CB South defeated North Penn to capture the SHSHL AA title on Monday. To view photos of all the CB South/NP game action, please visit the Photo Gallery.
WARWICK – It's amazing how a short period of time can change the outcome of an ice hockey game.
A three-minute and 30-second stretch of the third period meant the difference between a loss and a win for Central Bucks South.
The Titans scored three goals in that short span and beat North Penn 5-3 to win the Suburban High School Hockey League AA title at Warwick Ice on Monday night.
With the Knights' Caleb Witzaney in the penalty box for hooking, South got its offense going. Bobby Mallon got the first goal of the spree, scoring with 1:12 gone in the period on the power play.
Fifty seconds later, the Titans took their first lead of the game. Dominic Bova slid the puck past North Penn goalie Cody Matthews for a 3-2 lead.
Jared Conroy got an insurance goal 2:19 seconds later to give South a lead it wouldn't lose.
“The power play got us going,” said CB South forward Connor Bechtel. “We got one and then we just piggy-backed off each other and we just kept going.
“I think we knew we could take them, but we just had to play our game. It was 2-0 we were down, and we just got going and they couldn't stop us.”
Titan coach Tom Coyne had another view of the three-goal explosion.
“A couple smart plays and a couple big hits in our own end, maybe a good stop,” he said of the reasons his team got going. “It's just you get one (goal) and we're the kind of team that it just becomes contagious. We just emotionally got going after that.
“It got to 2-1 and I really liked our chances. You could feel that they (North Penn) were kind of gripping a little tight and from there I just knew.
“We were just chipping away. Our shot total started to come up and we started finishing our hits. It was fun.”
North Penn coach Kevin Vaitis realized that his team came a bit unglued in that third period.
“They got frustrated with some of the plays out there,” Vaitis said of his players. “I got a little frustrated with some of the things that took place, but we as a team have to do a better job of maintaining our composure and play the game against CB South.
“That's the bottom line. We came out and jumped on them the way we wanted to early in the game and couldn't really keep that lead up.
“They got a couple goals that kind of took the wind out of our sails. We tried to make a comeback, but it was a little bit too late.”
A lot of the credit goes to Bechtel. He missed the entire first period because he was in Wayne, N.J., playing in a makeup game for his junior team.
His mother rushed him from that game to Warwick in time for the second and third periods. Coyne, for one, was glad of that.
“He's a leader,” Coyne said. “He leads a lot by what he does on the ice. That picks the guys up.
“His junior team had a playoff or a makeup game from Hurricane Sandy so he had to go up there and play that. Thanks to his mom for breaking all the speed laws, she got him here for the second and third.”
Bechtel scored goals in both the second and third periods and added an assist on Mallon's goal that started the onslaught. Not a bad night considering he missed the first 16 minutes of the game.
It was in that first period that North Penn took its first lead. For nearly the entire 16 minutes, it appeared that neither team was going to score a goal.
But, with 14.9 seconds left in the period, the Knights made their move. Alex Peterson took a pass from Jeremy Snyder and backhanded a shot into the upper left-hand corner of the net over the shoulder of South goalie Jeff Pelkowski.
Peterson came back in the second period to increase North Penn's lead, scoring with another assist from Snyder with 3:17 elapsed in the second for a 2-0 lead.
Bechtel got one of those two goals back later in the period. He took passes from Mike Pilla and Brandon Spognardi and beat Matthews at the 11:36 mark to cut the Knights' lead in half.
The second period saw nine penalties called. At one point, North Penn had three players in the penalty box and South had two.
Mallon, Bova and Conroy got things rolling for the Titans in the third period. Their goals put the Titans in a position to grab the win and the title..
Witzaney got North Penn back within one goal when he scored with 9:06 left in the period off an assist from Matthew Mette.
But Bechtel had the final word. After North Penn pulled its goalie, Bechtel put one in the unguarded net with four seconds left in the game.
The two teams will now prepare for the Flyers Cup, which actually began for some teams on Monday night. South, seeded first, will play Central Bucks East, an 8-3 winner over Haverford Monday, and North Penn, the No. 2 seed, will take on Conestoga, a 4-2 winner over Dallastown. Both games will be Thursday evening: the Titans will play at Warwick at 6:45 p.m. And the Knights will play at 9 p.m. at Hatfield Ice.
Central Bucks South 0 1 4 – 5
North Penn 1 1 1 – 3
1. Alex Peterson NP (Jeremy Snyder) 15:52. Penalties: Caleb Witzaney NP (unsportsmanlike conduct) 2:21; Brenden Clements CBS (high sticking) 2:21; Connor Matsinger CBS (slashing) 5:18; Derek Heckler NP (interference) 8:56; Jake Burns NP (cross checking) 10:56.
2. Peterson NP (Snyder) 3:17; 3. Connor Bechtel CBS (Mike Pilla, Brandon Spognardi) 11:36. Penalties: Dominic Bova CBS (cross checking) 0:34; Kevin Saylor NP (tripping) 4:53; Burns NP (holding) 10:38; Bova CBS (slashing) 11:39; Dalton Bideau NP (cross checking) 15:28; Ryan Nowicki NP (elbowing) 15:28; Matthew Mette NP (roughing) 15:28; Matsinger CBS (elbowing) 15:28; Nick DeLaurentis CBS (roughing) 15:28.
4. Bobby Mallon CBS (Jake Bauer, Bechtel) 1:12; 5. Bova CBS (Bauer, Kevin Casey) 2:02; 6. Jared Conroy CBS (Alex Stoll, Spognardi) 4:41; 7. Witzaney NP (Mette) 9:06; 8. Bechtel CBS (Spognardi) 15:56. Penalties: Witzaney NP (hooking) 0:48; Peterson NP (roughing) 6:15; Derek Heckler NP (holding) 6:15; Pilla CBS (roughing) 6:15; Witzaney NP (roughing) 9:06; Matsinger CBS (roughing) 9:06.
Shots: CBS – 29, NP – 26. Saves: Jeff Peklowski CBS 23; Cody Matthews NP 23.
ARCHBISHOP WOOD 10, UPPER MORELAND 3
The Vikings responded to Friday’s loss to the Golden Bears by seizing early control of Monday’s rematch and never looking back. The Vikings – sparked by a pare of Shane Lydon goals – scored four straight goals after the Golden Bears got on the scoreboard first when Matthew Baumgardner scored three minutes into the game (Matthew Iehle/Nick Park assists).
It was a 7-3 game at the end of two periods, and for good measure, the Vikings tacked on three more goals in the third period.
The Vikings, who held a lopsided 46-18 advantage in shots, were led by the four-point effort of Lydon (two goals, two assists) and the three-point performances of Bailey Nixon (three assists) and Patrick Cavanaugh (two goals, one assist). Ryan Meinke, Matt Mandes and Shane Freeman each contributed one goal and one assist. For the Golden Bears, Iehle led the way with two goals and one assist while Park had a pair of assists.
Wood goalie John Capinas turned away 15 of 18 shots while Darrien Olson was credited with 36 saves.
The two teams will do battle on Tuesday night for the SHSHL Class A title.
ARCHBISHOP WOOD 4 3 3-10
UPPER MORELAND 1 2 0-3
UM-Matthew Baumgarnder (Matthew Iehle, Nick Park) 3:01
AW – Ryan Meinke (Matt Mandes ) 7:15
AW – Shane Lydon (Ryan Meinke) 11:08
AW – Shane Lydon (Tim Schisselbauer, Shane Freeman) 11:21
AW- Patrick Cavanaugh (Kevin Neiley, Bailey Nixon) 15:22
AW – Jonathan Rosica (powerplay) (Troy Potts) 1:40
UM – Matthew Iehle (Nick Park) 2:08
AW – Matt Mandes (kevin Neiley, Bailey Nixon) 7:09
UM – Matthew Iehle (unassisted) 8:15
AW – Ian Schoenieber (Michael Anzideo, Shane Lydon) 10:55
AW – Patrick Cavanaugh (unassisted) 3:10
AW – Kyle Gallen (Patrick Cavanaugh) 3:28
AW – Shane Freeman (powerplay) (Bialey Nixon, Shane Lydon) 10:54
Archbishop Wood 13 19 14-46
Upper Moreland 8 5 5-18
John Capinas (AW) 15; Darrien Olson (AW) 36.