Sunday, January 31, 1999

MIGHTY DUCK 6, WORCESTER 3


Close shave doesn't bother Askey

BY DAVE HELLER
Enquirer contributor

        Cincinnati Mighty Ducks goaltender Tom Askey cut his shoulder length hair to the point where his neck is visible between his mask and uniform. He also shaved off the goatee.

        But, unlike Samson, the lack of hair weakened neither Askey nor the Ducks as Cincinnati beat Worcester 6-3 at Cincinnati Gardens in front of 6,298, the largest crowd of the season.

        “Got home (Friday) night, looked in the mirror and decided I needed a change,” Askey said of his short haircut. “Grabbed it by the pony tail and just cut it off. Didn't effect (my confidence) at all.”

        Askey continued his recent stellar play, recording 34 saves. Over his last eight games, which includes seven starts, Askey has a 1.75 goals against average and .945 save percentage.

        Askey even recorded an assist, becoming only the second Ducks goalie to record a point.

        Askey has won three straight starts and four of his last five, helping the Ducks tie a franchise record for most wins in a month (6), set in March 1998.

        “What I notice from Tom Askey this year is that he's more focused, more prepared and having a veteran like Jamie Ram showing to help him out, show him the proper way,” Ducks coach Moe Mantha said.

        Said Askey: “When you have confidence you can play above your potential, and right now I just feel great. This game is coming easy to me.”

        Askey's job was made easier by a Ducks offense that scored three goals in the first period and didn't let up in the second, notching two more scores.

        “It felt good not to have to scratch and claw for every goal for once,” said Mike LeClerc, who had two goals.

        The Ducks' three goals in the opening period were scored in a span of 2:01 —

        Worcester ....... 1  0  2—3

        Cincinnati ....... 3  2  1—6

        First period: 1, C, Ferguson 2 (Banham, Pavlikovsky), ppg, 4:37; 2, C. Leclerc 16 (Reichert), 5:52; 3, C, Nikulin 11 (Banham, Askey), 6:38; 4, W, Podkonicky 8, 15:42.

        Second period: 5, C, Wren 19 (Reichert, Crowley), 7:41; 6, C, Reichert 18 (Ciernik, Crowley), 16:24.

        Third period: 7, C, Leclerc 17 (Wren), 6:02; 8, W, Corso 10 (Toporowski), 11:00; 9, W, Mayers 9 (Low), 19:24.

        Shots: Wor 13-12-12=37; Cin 14-9-7=30. Power play opportunities: Wor 0-5; Cin 1-3. Goalies: Wor, Johnson (start; 6:47 of 1st), (7-7-2) and Roche (6:38 of 1st); Cin, Askey (10-10-3). Attendance: 6,298.

       



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