Bullfrogs Decry the Officiating After 12-9 Loss to the Rhinos


There was another penalty-marred rout Sunday at The Pond of Anaheim, but the Bullfrogs were on the wrong side as San Jose took a seven-goal lead in the fourth quarter to win, 12-9.

Mark Woolf and Denny Purdie each had three goals and three assists as the Rhinos (7-1-2) scored eight third-quarter goals to take control before coasting to a Roller Hockey International victory. A crowd of 8,991 saw two scuffles, 110 penalty minutes and a game the Bullfrogs played under protest.

Bullfrogs Coach Grant Sonier and Rhinos Coach Roy Sommer criticized the officiating.

"They awarded a penalty shot after a game-misconduct penalty and a four-minute roughing penalty," Sonier said. "Nowhere in the rules does it say that a penalty shot should be awarded under those circumstances."

In the RHI, an automatic penalty shot is awarded after a five-minute major penalty.

"The Bullfrogs have a hell of a hockey club," Sommer said, "and to come in here and get a win, well, it's never been done before."

The loss ended a 16-game home winning streak for the Bullfrogs (9-2). The loss was also the first for Bullfrogs goalie Rob Laurie, who won in 15 starts. Goalie Chris Gordon replaced Laurie, who allowed 11 goals on 36 shots, in the fourth quarter.

Both coaches said San Jose's victory was tainted.

"The referees let the game get out of hand," Sommer said. "Some things happened that were uncalled for and no one wants to see anyone get hit with the butt end of a stick. (The officiating) made it bad for both teams."

For the Bullfrogs, the ugliness began in the third quarter when San Jose scored eight goals and officials whistled the Bullfrogs for 50 minutes in penalties.

After San Jose scored three goals in the first 2 minutes 38 seconds of the third quarter, Bullfrogs captain Kevin Kerr, who had two goals, scored on a rebound to put Anaheim a goal behind, 6-5.

After Kerr pointed to the net, he exchanged words with San Jose's Rob MacInnis and a fight ensued with the Bullfrogs' Darren Langdon going after MacInnis.

When officials maintained order, Langdon was assessed a game-misconduct penalty. Kerr received the first of his two 10-minute misconduct penalties, and Savo Mitrovic joined him in the penalty box, also drawing a 10-minute misconduct penalty.

San Jose took advantage of the situation, scoring five unanswered goals in the final 8:18 of the third quarter for an 11-5 lead.


Saturday's RHI All-Star game will be broadcast at 10 a.m. today on ESPN. Goalie Rob Laurie was the Bullfrogs' lone player on the Western Conference squad. . . . The Bullfrogs travel for games Thursday in Las Vegas and Friday in San Jose. Anaheim returns home July 17 to play San Diego.

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