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Rusty Bandits bounce back from early issues in win

It wasn’t pretty in the early minutes, but Buffalo came out of the City of Brotherly Love with a 12-11 overtime victory over the Philadelphia Wings at the Wells Fargo Center on Friday night.

With the win, Buffalo sweeps Philadelphia (2-9) in the season series, 3-0.

Chase Fraser led the Bandits (10-2) with four goals on six shots, including the game-winner.

Chris Cloutier scored twice on seven shots in his return to Philadelphia. Buffalo acquired him in a trade with the Wings in February.

Corey Small added two goals, one of which tied the game at 11 and forced overtime with just over a minute to play.

Frank Brown and Kevin Crowley each netted two goals for the Wings.

Neither goalie made it easy to score. Matt Vinc stopped 47 out of the 58 Philadelphia shots that were sent his way while Doug Buchan turned aside 54 out of 68 Bandit shots.

Buffalo exhibited some rust as the game began, evidence of the team’s bye week. The home squad drew first blood on a Kiel Matisz goal. Buffalo struck back, but five straight Philadelphia goals put the host Wings up 6-2 midway though the second quarter.

Goals by Fraser and Ethan O’Connor had Buffalo down by two headed into the halftime break.

The Bandits rallied in the locker room and came out looking much more like the league’s top offense.

By the end of the third quarter, Buffalo found themselves with more work to do down 11-8.

The team shook off the rust and held the Wings scoreless in the fourth quarter, allowing Fraser and Small to tie the game before the former sealed the game five minutes into the extra period.

Buffalo will return to the KeyBank Center tonight for the team’s annual Native American Night and a game with the Georgia Swarm.

A portion of proceeds from ticket sales will be donated to Native American Community Services.

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