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Bomb Threat Forces Hockey Forfeit

October 23, 1999

KINGSTON, Ontario (AP) _ A bomb threat disrupted an Ontario Hockey League game at Memorial Centre for 45 minutes Friday night and it became a forfeit when the visiting team refused to return to the arena.

The threat was phoned in during the second intermission of the game between the Kingston Frontenacs and Erie Otters. It forced the evacuation of 2,600 people from the arena and police searched the building for 45 minutes before spectators were allowed to return.

The game didn’t resume because Otters’ management balked at having its players return and as a result, Kingston was declared a 7-3 winner. Jonathan Schill scored three goals to lead the Frontenacs, who led by that score after two periods.

Police said the bomb threat came through 911 and the identity of the caller is being investigated.

Erie coach Dave MacQueen, who consulted with OHL commissioner David Branch before making his decision to forfeit the game, said his primary concern was the safety of his players.

Doug Springer, co-owner of the Frontenacs, said someone was playing a ``dangerous and sick″ game with the bomb threat.

``There’s no question in my mind there’s some whacko out there having a laugh,″ Springer said. ``But it’s not funny, not at all. This is a very serious.″

Springer has already seen his team miss three home games because of a municipal labor strike and had another postponed by ice problems.

``I would never have dreamed this would happen,″ Springer said. ``It’s just unfortunate people haven’t had the opportunity to see what I think is a very good hockey team. But they will.″

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