Reprinted from yesterday's late editions.
The Washington Capitals surged back after trailing by four goals to gain a 4-4 tie tonight with the Toronto Maple Leafs.
The stalemate stretched the Caps' winless streak to 16 games.
The two goalies, Gary Smith and Mike Palmateer both were able to take credit for the comeback.
Smith, the lanky guardian of the Washington goal, played superbly the last two periods, thwarting 22 of 24 shots.
Palmateer, the tubby tot in the Leafs' net blamed himself for Washington's rally.
"They didn't come back as muchas I let them come back," Palmateer complained after letting in two easy goals in the third period.
Guy Charron scored his seventh of the season from a difficult angle at 3:06 of the third period and Jack Lynch slapped a sinker from the blue line a 4:16 for the tie.
The leafs led, 4-0, early in the second period on two goals by Lanny McDonald and singles by Borje Salming and Dave (Tiger) Williams. Bill Collins and Gerry Mechan narrowed the score to 4-2 going into the last period.
"our ability to come back came out two games ago with Atlanta," observed Capital coach Tom McVie. "We were down, 2-0. The last 35 minutes of the game was ll Washington, but we only got a 2-2 tie out of it."
"Tonight we got down four goals. Not only did we come back-that was the big thing -- but we pressed the issue. We can be proud of highting back while on the road.
"Smith, shaky at the start of the game, settled down. With the match tied, Williams began jousting with defenseman Rick Green in front of the Washington goal. In an ealier meeting of the teams, a similar fracas distracted Smith and the Leafs scored and won the game. Tonight, his concentration was steady.
"We had a meeting before the game and decided that the defensemen would look after Williams and I would do my job," Smith said. "Williams is a dangerous man to have front of the net.
"I hope we'be turned the corner now. We've had a lot of tough luck. Nothing has gone right."
Toronto coach Roger Neilson concurred, "Washington has had bad breaks all season. Look at how they were ahead of Montreal and were tied in the last 16 seconds.
"The breaks were bound to go their way. We probably had one of our best powerplays of the season tonight, with six or seven scoring chances, and Smitty came up with every one of them."
The game started as a dull affair with some of the 16,485 fans finding better entertainment playing volley-ball with a balloon in the stands. They booed the usherette who took away their toy. Later, they booed the Leafs for giving away certain victory.
Toronto held a 4-0 advantage when Bill Collins foughtoff Toronto's Jerry Butler to beat Palmateer with a wrist shot at 9:15 of the second period. Then Toronto rookie defensemen Trevor Johansen set up a two-man breakaway by hitting Bob Sirois and Meehan raced by him, Sirois faked a shot and Meehan scored the goal.
Neilson tried to rouse his team with some rough stuff. He put together a line of Kurt Walker, Williams and Jim Jones. It took a few seconds for Walker to engage Bugsy Watson in a meeting of something less than the minds. Walker pumped 11 short left hooks into Bugsy's startled expression.
But that was the Leafs' last successful offensive effort.