Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Chase Shines in Blues' Loss to Tampa

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Chase Shines in Blues' Loss to Tampa

Article excerpt

At least members of the Kelly Chase Fan Club went home happy Tuesday night.

Chase was one of the few bright spots in the Blues' 5-3 loss to the Tampa Bay Lighting in a National Hockey League preseason game at Peoria's Civic Arena.

He scored one goal, briefly putting the Blues in the game by cutting Tampa's lead to 3-1 midway through the second period. He nearly accounted for two more, but D Daren Puppa made big stops on him and Nelson Emerson.

Chase also played his role as enforcer, calming down hyper defenseman Chris Lipuma on several occasions, much to the delight of his Peoria fans.

Otherwise, they had little to cheer. Blues goalie Parris Duffus gave up five goals on 16 shots through two periods. Gerard Gallant, Petr Klima, Brian Bradley, Brent Gretzky and Chris Gratton scored for the Lightning (3-1-1 in preseason).

The Blues had some horrible defensive blunders and never really were in the game, although they showed a brief sign of life after Chase's goal. Emerson and Doug Crossman scored late goals after Tampa had built a 5-1 lead.

"We have a lot to work on," a glum coach Bob Berry said. "On the bright side, we didn't fold the tent and played well in the third period."

Also on the bright side, Chase played well and got plenty of opportunity to do so. Right winger Rich Sutter left the game in the second period with a groin injury, giving Chase extra ice time.

"How much fun was it to play so much?" Chase asked rhetorically.

Chase made the most of his ice time, impressing Brett Hull.

"It's tough for me to say anything about him without getting in trouble," said Hull, the Blues' captain, "but he's a guy who should have been given a chance two years ago. The kid can play. His skills have developed tenfold."

Chase, 25, has developed steadily since the Blues signed him as a free agent on May 27, 1988, but he never has been able to get a regular job. …

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