The Buffalo Bandits began the Troy Cordingley era on a losing note as they fell to the Philadelphia Wings 17-13 on Saturday night at the First Niagara Center.
Wings forward Jordan Hall torched the Bandits for five goals, including four-straight in the second quarter, which allowed Philadelphia to take control of the game for good.
Former Bandit Tracey Kelusky got revenge on the team that released him in the offseason as he had a six point effort (2 goals, 4 assists) in his first game as a Wing. Kyle Buchanan led all players with eight points including a hat trick.
"They (Philadelphia) pushed us around," Cordingley said, "they we were prepared and played well, they won as team."
The Bandits offense struggled to sustain any momentum as they looked nervous in front of the home crowd.
"We have a plan and we didn't stuck with the plan, not even in the first quarter," said Cordingley, "we had guys on different pages."
There was a burst of greatness late in the first half when they scored on back-to-back power plays. Buffalo worked the ball around very well with Shawn Williams and Mark Steenhuis capitalizing. Kevin Brownell followed with a breakaway goal on a turnover to cut the lead to 9-7 going in to the half.
Ryan Benesch scored twice in his Buffalo debut along with an assist. Second-year transition player, Dhane Smith, led all Bandits with three goals and two assists.
Anthony Cosmo started in net for Bandits, but was pulled in the third quarter after giving up 13 goals on 51 shots. Kurtis Wagar came on in relief as the Bandit netminders faced a staggering total of 68 shots. The most shots the Bandits gave up last season was 63.
Buffalo is off until January 10 when they host the Toronto Rock at the First Niagara Center.