Hawks Look to Regain Series Edge in Game 3

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Byline: Tim Sassone Daily Herald Sports Writer

Dropping Game 2 of their Western Conference semifinal series with Colorado isn't the end of the world for the Blackhawks.

But if they don't learn from what went wrong in their ugly 5-1 defeat and correct it tonight in Game 3 at the United Center, the Hawks could be getting closer to the end of the season.

After impressing everyone with their discipline for five games, the Hawks' evil twin emerged Saturday. A rash of undisciplined penalties gave Colorado 7 power plays and the Avalanche scored a pair of goals.

"We let our heads get to us," Jeremy Roenick said. "We've been good all through the playoffs, and I guess we were bound to explode. But we accept responsibility for it and we've got to learn from it."

After a good start, the Hawks began to unravel just past the 12-minute mark in a 1-1 game when referee Rob Shick missed an obvious penalty on Scott Young against Steve Smith.

Young dropped Smith to the ice with a forearm to the face, took the puck from him, and got off a shot that Jeff Hackett stopped. But Craig Wolanin scored on the rebound.

Smith took a 10-minute misconduct penalty for arguing with Shick as the Avalanche seized all the momentum and scored 2 more goals before the period was over.

"That was a punch in the head (by Young) and everyone saw it on video except the principle guy," Enrico Ciccone said. "Smitty got mad and got caught up in the emotion. That happens. Maybe it's a good lesson for us for the next game."

Smith said all he wanted from Shick was an explanation why there was no call, but the referee instead only answered him with curse words.

"But it was a bad play on my part to go after the referee like that," Smith said.

"Obviously, (Shick) missed that call and it cost us a goal, but we can't let those things get to us," said coach Craig Hartsburg. …