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Blades Dent Bullfrogs' Supremacy : Roller hockey: L.A. wins, 7-4, in front of 13,101 at The Pond to move into first-place tie with Anaheim.

July 24, 1994|MICHAEL ITAGAKI | TIMES STAFF WRITER

ANAHEIM — With his famous father watching from the stands, Coach Bobby Hull Jr. led his Los Angeles Blades to a 7-4 victory over the Bullfrogs before an announced crowd of 13,101 at The Pond of Anaheim.

Craig Charron scored four goals in the first seven minutes of the third quarter and goalie Max Mikhailovsky had a franchise-record 50 saves to lead the Blades (11-3) into a first-place tie with the Bullfrogs (11-4) in the Pacific Division of Roller Hockey International.

"This team has reached a new level," Hull said. "Early in the season, we didn't know what it took to win in this league. Now we know how to compete with the best, and now we know who the real best team in the league is."

The Blades, who won their seventh consecutive game, trailed, 1-0, at halftime, but Mikhailovsky kept it close. The Bullfrogs managed only a goal by Rick Judson despite outshooting the Blades, 21-14.

"I thought we played a great first half, we just didn't bury the puck in the net," Bullfrogs Coach Grant Sonier said. "Max stood on his head."

With Mikhailovsky keeping pucks out of the net, Charron was shoving them into the Bullfrogs' goal.

First, he scored an unassisted goal 37 seconds into the third quarter. Then after Bullfrog forward Kevin Kerr received a two-minute and game-misconduct penalty for holding an opponent's stick, Charron scored on the ensuing penalty shot to give the Blades a 2-1 lead with 11 minutes 3 seconds remaining in the third quarter.

Charron beat Bullfrogs goalie Chris Gordon for two more goals in the quarter to push the lead to 4-1. Charron has eight goals in his last two games.

The Bullfrogs tried to rally. Goals by Brad McCaughey and Savo Mitrovic cut the lead to 4-3 early in the fourth quarter, but the Blades' Nick Vachon helped blunt the comeback attempt.

Mitrovic scored twice in the fourth quarter, but both times Vachon answered with a goal for the Blades. Tony Gruba scored with 3:32 remaining for the final margin of victory.

"This win was huge for us," Charron said. "It couldn't be bigger. They've had a psychological edge on us in the past, but tonight we broke that."

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