The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA


March 24, 2010

Devils rally, hand Chiefs fifth straight loss

TRENTON, N.J. — For a few moments it looked like the Johnstown Chiefs might find a ray of light in a dismal season, as they were poised to pick up their first third-period comeback victory.

Then reality set in and the Trenton Devils scored twice to hand the Chiefs a 4-3 loss, which was their fifth straight and eighth in 10 games this month. The Chiefs, who will move to Greenville, S.C., at the end of the season, are 16-40-7-4 this season. They are 23 points behind Trenton, which has the next worst record in the league.

Goalie Kris Mayotte returned to the Chiefs’ lineup after a three-game absence and made 38 saves, but it wasn’t enough.

He made 16 saves in a scoreless first period, but Trenton got to him in the second. Chris Poli used a drop pass on the doorstep to set up Ryan Ginand, who scored into an open net six minutes into the period. The Chiefs responded as Chanse Fitzpatrick score on a rebound of Connor Shields’ shot at 8:51. Jack Combs twisted home a bouncing puck at 15:53 with the Devils on the power play for a 2-1 Trenton lead.

Sean Berkstresser slammed home his 20th goal of the season just 2:54 into the third to tied it at 2. Jim McKenzie picked up the primary assist on the power-play goal. Another pass by McKenzie sent Bear Trapp in on a breakaway just moments later. Trapp’s first goal as a Chief came with 4:45 gone and gave the Chiefs their first lead of the night.

But Trenton got two goals in less than two minutes to take control. Dave Leaderer scored on a tricky backhand from low on the left wing at 6:48 to tie it and then Jeff Prough pounced on a loose puck to score with Trenton on the power play.

The Chiefs power play went 1-for-3 while the penalty  kill was 2-for-5. 

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