We have four National Hockey League games on which to report this Sunday morning. There were some fine individual efforts, a great comeback and a surprise visitor to the Maple Leafs dressing room.
Mikita One-Man Wrecking Crew
The Chicago Black Hawks, er, shall we say Stan Mikita, had no trouble getting past the Minnesota North Stars last night in Bloomington, Minnesota. Led by Mikita’s three goals, the Hawks slammed the Stars 4-1.
There were just under 15,000 fans in the North Stars’ new arena and they witnessed a fine display by the Hawks. They also saw some great goaltending by their own netminder, as Gary Bauman’s heroics in the Minnesota goal kept his team in the game.
The game was particularly encouraging for Chicago, whose slow start this season has been well-documented. Mikita’s offensive outburst is definitely a good sign. But even more welcome was the solid work of the Hawks’ defensive unit.
The North Stars managed just 18 shots at Chicago goalie Denis DeJordy. Only Andre Boudrias, with his sixth goal of the season, managed to get one past DeJordy, and that was in the second period.
Pat Stapleton gave the Hawks a 1-0 first-period lead at 18:07 of the first. He whipped in a 15-footer after taking a nice setup pass from Doug Mohns.
Mikita followed up with the eventual winning goal just past the half-way mark of the game. He beat Bauman with a quick backhander. Boudrias got the home side on the board just past the 14-minute mark but that was as close as the Stars would get.
Mikita completed his hat trick in the final 20 minutes. His second goal came as a result of a great individual effort to pick up his own rebound and deposit behind Bauman. Number three on the night came off a shot from the faceoff circle to Bauman’s right.
North Stars lost right winger Bill Goldsworthy in the second period when he was jammed up against a goal post. Goldsworthy had to be removed from the ice on a stretcher. Reports after the game indicate he suffered a lacerated and broken arm, as well as an undetermined hip injury.
Walton Leads Leafs
Young Mike Walton continued his recent rise to stardom last night at Maple Leaf Gardens. Walton scored two goals to lead the Toronto Maple Leafs to a 3-2 win over the visiting Detroit Red Wings. The win for Toronto was encouraging in more ways than the scoreboard indicated.
After the game in the Toronto dressing room, as Walton described his two goals, a familiar voice chimed in, “It’s all luck.”
Walton and everyone else was delighted to see Maple Leafs star Frank Mahovlich smiling and joking with Walton and other players. The Big M looked fit, relaxed and ready to play.
Mahovlich was released yesterday afternoon from Toronto General Hospital after being confined there for 22 days with a nervous disorder. He told team mates and reporters he is anxious to return to the lineup.
On the ice, it was Walton’s show. The two goals give him seven in the past five games. It was five games ago when he replaced the injured Dave Keon. He could have had at least two more, had it not been for superlative efforts by Detroit goalie Roy Edwards, who robbed him twice.
Walton was happy to score the winning goal, since he was the goat on Paul Henderson’s second-period marker which gave Detroit a 2-1 lead. He wan’t paying attention on a key faceoff which enabled Gordie Howe to win the draw directly to Henderson. He explained:
“Red Shetler (the linesman) apologized to me after that play. He was telling some guy to get out of the circle and I was listening to the conversation. He dropped the puck before I was set. So I didn’t have my stick there and Howe was home free. But don’t put the rap on Shetler. He’s a good fellow and a fine official. It was just one of those things.”
Marcel Pronovost had the other Toronto goal, while Gary Jarrett also scored for Detroit.
Flyers Edge Blues; Parent Stars
Philadelphia Flyers goalie Bernie Parent made 41 saves to enable his team to nip the St. Louis Blues 2-1 last night in St. Louis. The Blues outshot the Flyers 42-23 and only the spectacular work of Parent enabled the Flyers to take the two points.
Gary Dornhoefer and Bill Sutherland took care of the scoring for the Flyers. Terry Crisp had the only St. Louis goal.
The game was not as one-sided as the shots on goal totals would suggest. Many of the St. Louis shots were from long range, often as a result of a dump-in. This is not to diminish Parent’s fine game, he had to make a number of saves on close-in chances, displaying great agility and quickness.
Seth Martin also played will in goal for the Blues. He made big stops on Lou Angotti and Sutherland, who was an offensive problem for the Blues all night.
Bruins for Real, Dump Habs
The Montreal Canadiens learned last night a fact that the rest of the NHL is quickly realizing: The Boston Bruins are for real. The Bruins skated into the legendary Forum last night and took a 3-1 decision over the Habs right in their own rink.
The Bruins spotted Canadiens a 1-0 lead, thanks to a power play goal by Habs’ Bobby Rousseau. The visitors then roared back with one goal in the second and two in the final frame to claim an important two points.
It wasn’t until 11:16 of the second period that Boston finally managed to tie the game on a wonderful individual effort by Phil Esposito. The lanky Bruins centre carried the puck into the Montreal zone, split the defence and slid a perfect shot past Canadiens goalie Gump Worsley into the corner.
It was a tense, close-checking game that had the look of an eventual tie. But things changed just past the half-way mark of the third. With Habs’ Claude Larose off for tripping, Ken Hodge tipped in a Bobby Orr point shot to give the Bruins the lead.
That was the only edge Boston needed. They threw a blanket over the Montreal offence and allowed no real scoring chances the rest of the way.
Johnny McKenzie provided an insurance goal for the Bruins with just over a minute left in the game. John Bucyk did the leg work on this one, breaking up a Montreal clearing play on the right-wing boards. He slipped a perfect pass to McKenzie in front of the Canadiens’ goal. McKenzie made no mistake.
Both goalies, Worsley of Montreal and the Bruins’ Eddie Johnston, were outstanding. Bruins outshot the Habs 26-17.
Pens Comeback Nets Tie
The visiting Pittsburgh Penguins spotted the Oakland Seals a 2-0 lead, then came back with a pair of third-period goals to salvage a 2-2 tie last night at Oakland before a crowd of 5,977 disappointed fans.
After a scoreless first period, Tom Thurlby and Alain Caron gave the Seals a 2-0 lead at the end of the second period. The goal by Thurlby was his first in the NHL after eight seasons in the minors. Tom was called up from Vancouver of the Western Hockey League last week.
The Penguins commenced their comeback at 5:53 of the final frame. Art Stratton tipped in a Dick Mattiussi point shot past Oakland goalie Charlie Hodge to narrow the gap to 2-1. Hodge had no chance on the play.
Bob Dillabough tied the game at 8:23 on the prettiest play of the night. Picking up the puck near centre ice, Dillabough rushed past the Seals defence, broke in alone on Hodge and beat him from about eight feet with a nifty backhand shot.
Pittsburgh goalie Hank Bassen was principally responsible for Pittsburgh even having a chance in this game. His early saves kept the Seals from running away. He was especially tough on Caron, whom he stopped four times.
- Cleveland Barons of the AHL bombed the touring WHL Phoenix Roadrunners 10-2 in an interlocking game at Cleveland. Norm Ferguson led the Barons attack with three goals. Wilf Martin, Jim Patterson and Wayne Schultz had two each. Cecil Hoekstra had the other Cleveland score. Walt McKechnie and Lou Jankowski scored for the Roadrunners. McKechnie also suffered an eye injury when hit by the puck and had to be taken to hospital.
- Hershey Bears downed the Springfield Kings 5-3 in AHL play at Hershey. Chuck Hamilton led the way for the Bears with two goals. Don Marcotte, Michel Harvey and Mike Mahoney added the others. Billy Inglis fired a pair of goals for the Kings, with Rick Pagnutti netting the other.
- Toronto Marlboros whipped the Oshawa Generals 7-0 last night in an Ontario Hockey Association Junior A game at Oshawa. John Wright scored three times for Toronto, with Tom Martin adding a pair. Singles came from Terry Caffery and Carl Varga.
- Toronto prospect Nick Harbaruk, a holdout from the Rochester Americans since training camp, has finally signed his contract. He has been loaned to Tulsa of the Central Professional Hockey League.
- Rangers Larry Jeffrey hadn’t scored a goal all season, so to change his luck, for Thursday’s game against Boston he changed his sweater number from 17 to 10. The switch was both good and bad for Jeffery. He scored his first goal of the season minutes before being knocked out cold when blind-sided by Boston’s Ted Green.