DENVER — The Buffalo Bandits didn’t need John Tavares on Saturday night. They won their third straight game without him.
The Bandits (3-1) used long scoring runs in the first and third quarters to defeat the Colorado Mammoth, 16-9, before 14,822 in the Pepsi Center. Buffalo’s offense came from a variety of sources.
Dhane Smith had four goals, including a natural hat trick split between the second and third period. Ryan Benesch finished with eight points (one goal, seven assists), while Shawn Williams had six points.
Meanwhile, defenseman Steve Priolo had three goals – all in the first period. It was the first hat trick in Priolo’s Bandit career. He had never scored two goals in a game until last week’s contest against Toronto.
There was no immediate word on why Tavares missed the game. The veteran scored five goals, including the overtime winner last week in Philadelphia.
Goalie Anthony Cosmo of the Bandits had the 5,000th save in his career.
Former Canisius star Adam Jones had five points for the Mammoth (1-5).
Buffalo returns home on Saturday night for a game against the Rochester Knighthawks. The Bandits are a half-game behind the 3-0 Knighthawks.