Nine-point 2nd period lifts Spirit over Invaders Canton fights back, falls short, 17-15


CANTON, Ohio -- The smoke from the halftime fireworks show didn't clear from the Memorial Civic Center last night.

And the haze from a nine-point, second-quarter scoring flurry by Baltimore apparently didn't clear from the minds of the Invaders as the Spirit won, 17-15.

Canton came back from a 17-12 deficit in the fourth period on an unassisted two-point goal by Carlos Ledesma.

With less than five minutes left in the game, former Invaders player and now Baltimore midfielder Clark Brisson was penalized for boarding, which set up a power play for Canton. Kia's shootout attempt was blocked by Baltimore goalkeeper Shawn Boehmcke.

But with 22 seconds left in the power play, Marcelo Carrera scored with an assist by Kia to pull Canton to within two points, 17-15.

The Invaders had another power- play opportunity after Rusty Troy was called for unsportsmanlike conduct, but Ken Pryor's shot went wide right and Baltimore held on to win. Baltimore is now 4-0 and Canton dropped to 1-3.

Canton jumped out to a 8-2 lead in the first quarter before 3,681 at its home opener, which was a celebration of its 10 years as a franchise.

But the Spirit wouldn't go away. Baltimore took a 11-10 lead at the 14:29 mark in the second quarter when Dan O'Keefe worked his way into the goalie's box and scored on a pass from Jason Dieter. O'Keefe's score topped the seven-point run by the Spirit in less than five minutes.

Baltimore went from one shot on goal in the first quarter to 11 in the second.

Canton had an 8-2 lead at the end of the first period on goals by Dick McCormick, Pryor and Kia.

The Invaders' Doug Swanson scored Canton's final goal of the first half at 1:23 in the second quarter. Then the Spirit took over.

Rob Ukrop led the spurt with a two-point goal. Lance Johnson had the assist. An unassisted three-point goal by Paul Wright moved Baltimore to within three points, 10-7. Johnson bounced the ball off a Canton defender to score to move Baltimore to within one at 11:44 in the second quarter.

NOTES: The 15-minute operatic interpretation of the birth of Captain Invader featured smoke, lazers and indoor fireworks before the game. The celebration was in honor of the Invaders' 10th season in the NPSL. Canton is one of two charter members still remaining in the NPSL. Milwaukee is the other. . . . The anniversary celebration delayed the game 15 minutes, and problems with the turf held play up for another 10 minutes. . . . On Nov. 13, 1984, the Invaders played their first road game against the Columbus Capitals. Columbus won the game, 10-9, in overtime.

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