Tue, Mar 10, 2015 - Page 19 News List

Steve Clark inspires come-from-behind Black Bears victory

By Grant Dexter  /  Staff reporter

The Black Bears staged a remarkable comeback to edge the Leopard Cats in their Taipei Ice Hockey League semi-final at the Iceland rink on Sunday night.

The Bears trailed 3-1 going into the third period, but a long-range strike by Steve Clark and a goal right before the siren by Chris Hsu forced overtime.

The game went into a shootout after neither team found the net during time added on, and, after two misses, Clark stepped to the fore again, whipping a shot past goaltender Luca D’Arsie.

“I felt nervous,” Clark said after the game about being two goals down. “I was confident that we could come back, but one game in an elimination setting, you never know what’s going to happen.”

“The boys played good and everyone stepped up when it was time,” he added.

The Bears created a number of opportunities with their passing game, but it was an errant pass from the opposition that gave Clark his chance in the third period. He got the puck after a wayward clearance from behind the net, crossed the blue line and blasted it into the net past the D’Arsie’s left shoulder.

In the other semi-final, the table-topping Buffaloes were knocked over by the Clouded Leopards 5-2.

Hubert Wang got one goal for the Leopards, while Dennis Chou and Tony Yin bagged a brace each.

The Buffaloes got on the board through James Liao and Jack Weng.

“We did not play well enough,” Buffaloes captain Charlie Yang said. “Our passing let us down; it was a bad night.”

“But that’s hockey, right?” he added.

The finals are to be played after a break for the International Ice Hockey Federation Challenge Cup of Asia, which is on at the Iceland rink from Saturday until March 19.

Taiwan, the United Arab Emirates, Mongolia, Thailand and Macau are involved.

Yang, who is to play for Taiwan, said they were sure to win.

Yang coaches skating to children and adults in Taipei and at the New Taipei City Tucheng Civil Sports Center.

“I teach kids and adults,” Yang said. “If people want to learn to skate, they can come down to the rinks and ask at the front desk. The staff there will be able to find someone to help them.”

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