Bandits can't hold lead in 4-2 loss to Senators Leboutillier, King goals not enough in road defeat


CHARLOTTETOWN, Prince Edward Island -- Jason Zent and Steve Strunk each had a goal and an assist as the Prince Edward Island Senators defeated the Baltimore Bandits, 4-2, in an AHL game last night.

With the Senators trailing 2-1 in the second period, Zent cashed in on Claude Savoie's rebound at 5: 16 and, seven minutes later Strunk drilled another rebound past Bandits goalie Mike O'Neill for a 3-2 lead.

"At this point of the season, we can only concentrate on what we can do," said Zent. "We can't worry about other teams. We need to concentrate the way we did tonight. Because if we are looking over our shoulders we are not looking ahead."

Jean-Yves Roy and Lance Pit- lick added singles for the Senators bTC (30-33-4), who moved from fifth to third place in the Atlantic Division standings.

Peter Leboutillier and Steven King scored for the Bandits (25-24-9), who remained one point ahead of the Carolina Monarchs in the battle for the eighth and final Western Conference playoff spot.

"They played much harder after the first period," Bandits coach Walt Kyle said of the Senators. "That group of guys understands the importance of getting in the playoffs and taking advantage of their games at home. I don't think we played well. We played two dead periods."

Leboutillier opened the scoring at 3: 48 of the first, catching PEI goalie Frederic Cassivi by surprise with a 45-foot slap shot.

Roy tied it early in the second period, but King took a harmless shot at 4: 59 that startled Cassivi again as Baltimore took a 2-1 lead.

After Zent tied it at 5: 16 of the second period, Baltimore blew a five-on-three power-play opportunity, and Strunk netted the winner shortly after.

"Their penalty killers did a great job on the five-on-three," said Kyle. "We didn't adjust particularly well. We weren't getting shots. We have a pretty good power play. We're fourth or fifth in the league. We just didn't execute."

Pub Date: 3/20/96

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