Craig Ostroff recaps the action in Thursday’s North Penn/CB South contest. CB South/NP photos provided courtesy of Keith Clemens. Check back for a gallery of photos.
NORTH PENN 3, CENTRAL BUCKS SOUTH 3 (OT)
By Craig Ostroff
Few things can energize a team and swing the momentum of a game like a goal in the final minute of a period.
Ryan Kaufhold’s unassisted goal with 37 ticks left on the second period clock not only brought North Penn back to within a goal at 3-2, but it provided the Knights’ bench with a boost that propelled them to a stellar third period effort. And when Ryan Cunningham stole the puck just outside the offensive blueline and ripped a low laser into the net with 6:28 remaining in the final frame, it secured a 3-3 tie against Central Bucks South in Thursday’s Continental Conference matchup.
“Ryan Kaufhold scored that right off the draw, I think they won the draw and we got possession and he came right in and made a nice backhand goal,” North Penn coach Kevin Vaitis said. “That starts to carry some of that momentum into the third. I was very pleased with the energy we had in the second and third periods. We knew if it stayed a one-goal game we would have the chance to get that next goal and tie it up.
“Then Ryan Cunningham, we’re relying on him for a lot this year, he’s done a great job for us. He scored the game-winner for us (Wednesday, a 2-1 win over Central Bucks West) with about a minute-and-a-half left in the game, tonight he scored on a beautiful shot crossing the blue line. He’s played great for us all season, and through his entire varsity career.”
The Knights had a couple chances to end the game in overtime, including a terrific effort from Kaufhold to snake through the defense, but his attempt was thwarted by South goalie Mason Moyer, who recorded 30 saves on 33 shots.
Moyer’s solid effort in the first period helped the Titans build a 2-0 lead after 16 minutes. Goals a minute apart from DJ Lindenmuth (Daniel Kvecher and Owen Mendham assists) and Jonah Smith (Justin Montagna and Adam Cusick assists) gave South a cushion to work with.
North Penn got on the board less than a minute into the second period when Zach Cline poked in the puck (Chase Mueller assist) during a net-mouth scramble, but South regained its two-goal lead less than four minutes later when Smith tapped in a puck at the side of the net (Garrett Sklar, Montagna assists) for his second of the night and of the season.
“The first period we were kind of struggling to get going,” Vaitis said. “The mistakes we made in the first, those were all coachable moments we can show on tape and look to get better on, as long as we continue to work hard.
“I’m happy with tonight. We did not have our best performance last week against Pennsbury, and we were coming off last night where we outplayed CB West, and their goalie stood on his head and we were able to win 2-1 but it was close all the way to the end, so it was good to see we didn’t have a letdown tonight. We came out, started a little slow, John Boyles (32 saves) kept us in there, and we were able to capitalize and close the gap.”
The Knights (2-2-1) return to action at 7:10 pm Feb. 11 hosting nonleague opponent Neshaminy at Hatfield Gray. Central Bucks South (1-2-1) will visit Central Bucks East at 7:20 pm Feb. 10 at Bucks County Ice.
North Penn senior Zack Cline
Was a low-scoring, grind-it-out game the type of game you expect when you play CB South? We’ve played them all four years I’ve been here. It’s always a tight game against CB South. This is exactly the type of game we were expecting.
In the second game of a back-to-back, trailing early, you were able to force a tie. What does that say about your team? With the snow, we had no practice Monday and then had a game yesterday, so to come out and at least get a point out of tonight after going down 3-1 is great. It shows how much fight we have and shows that we know how to work hard and not get discouraged.
How important was that late second period goal? The bench was energized after that, you could feel it, and you could see it in the third period. We took it to another level after that goal.
Is the team where you think it needs to be at this point in the season? Of course, we’d like to be undefeated. Right now, we have a .500 record, so we’re not where we really want to be, but we’re happy with where we’re at. We were missing guys tonight and against Pennsbury. Getting games in and getting guys back, I think we’re in a good place to improve as the season goes on.
Given the uncertainty of the offseason, how nice is it just to be able to have a season? It’s great. I really didn’t think we were going to have this. It wasn’t looking good for a while, but I’m really happy that I get a chance to play a senior season and finish my career on the ice.
North Penn senior Ryan Cunningham
Was a low-scoring, grind-it-out game the type of game you expect when you play CB South? Our team isn’t as wide open as in years past, so I definitely thought we were going to have to grind it out a lot more. I think that showed by the two goals we scored that were rebounds in front of the net. We were working hard and battling to get those.
In the second game of a back-to-back, trailing early, you were able to force a tie. What does that say about your team? We’re getting better. We were missing two of our better forwards tonight, and to come back on the second day of a back-to-back is huge.
How important was that late second period goal? It was really important, it gave us a big momentum swing. Without that, I don’t know that we would have been able to come back in the third. That goal really pushed us.
Is the team where you think it needs to be at this point in the season? I think it is. We can always get better, but when we’re able to battle for a win like we did yesterday and make a comeback while missing some of our key forwards, it’s a big thing, it gives the younger guys experience in these types of games, and it shows our growth
Given the uncertainty of the offseason, how nice is it just to be able to have a season? It means a lot to me. It’s awesome they were able to get it together to get something going, and everyone really appreciates being able to play.
PENNSBURY 3, COUNCIL ROCK SOUTH 2 (OT)
Brendan Macainsh found the net with a short-handed goal 4:19 into the extra period, propelling the Falcons to the win in an overtime thriller between the SOL National rivals.
No one was thinking overtime when the Golden Hawks broke a scoreless tie with a pair of goals in the second period. Jeremy Purcell scored on the power play with an assist from Brennen Wright 10 minutes into the period, and less than a minute later, Sam Cherkassky turned a Julian Sarne pass into a goal and a 2-0 Rock South advantage.
The Falcons didn’t go down quietly. Justin Marlin scored with assists from Andrew Falkenstein and Jake McCaw 3:26 into the final period. Six minutes later, Macainsh connected on the equalizer, using a Shane Siegmund assist.
Marek Jorgenson turned away 15 of 17 shots he face in goal to earn the win. Carson Lopez kept the Golden Hawks in the game, turning in a brilliant 42-save effort to negate the Falcons lopsided 45-17 advantage in shots.
Council Rock South 0-2-0-0 2
Pennsbury 0-0-2-1 3
First period: No score
Second period: 1. Jeremy Purcell CRS (Brennen Wright) 10:03; 2. Sam Cherkassky CRS (Julian Sarne) 10:54.
Third period: 3. Justin Marlin P (Andrew Falkenstein/Jake McCaw) 3:26; 4. Brendan Macainsh P (Shane Siegmund) 9:22.
Overtime: 5. Brendan Macainsh P, 4:19.
Shots: Pennsbury 45, CRS 17. Saves: Carson Lopez (CRS) 42, Marek Jorgenson (P) 15.
Wednesday, Feb. 3
HARRY S TRUMAN 4, HATBORO-HORSHAM 3 (OT)
Eric Stofan scored just over a minute into overtime, capping a remarkable comeback by the Tigers who trailed 3-0 after one period. Jeremy McCartney and James Gallagher assisted on the game-winner, which was the first and only shot in OT.
Early on, there was absolutely nothing to suggest that the Tigers would even be in the game, much less rally to win it. The Hatters outshot the Tigers 11-4 in the opening period and scored three goals in six minutes to take what appeared to be a commanding early lead.
Sayvion Jones (Aidan Esack assist) put the Hatters on the scoreboard three minutes into the game, and two minutes later Vince Tarsi found the back of the net. At the 8:39 mark, Ben Lerner turned an Esack pass into a goal and a 3-0 Hatter lead. They did not score the rest of the way, this despite taking 21 shots in the second and third periods combined.
Truman goalie Connor Pilla stopped every shot that came his way after the first period barrage of goals in a stellar outing.
A goal by Jeremy McCartney late in the second period, using assists from Demian Ciarfardoni and Sean Dougherty, made it a 3-1 game heading into the final period. With six-and-a-half minutes remaining, McCartney’s second goal – this one with John Huhn and Brent McGoldrick assists – pulled the Tigers to within one.
Justin Reid scored the equalizer with just 62 seconds remaining, using assists from Stofan and Gallagher and setting the stage for overtime.
Both teams took 21 shots after the lopsided first period.
Hatboro-Horsham 3-0-0-0 3
Harry S Truman 0-1-2-1 4
First period: 1. Sayvion Jones HH (Aidan Esack) 3:00; 2. Vince Tarsi HH, 4:52; 3. Ben Lerner HH (Aidan Esack) 8:39.
Second period: 4. Jeremy McCartney HST (Demian Ciarfardoni/Sean Dougherty) 12:53.
Third period: 5. Jeremy McCartney HST (John Huhn/Brent McGoldrick) 9;23; 6. Justin Reid HST (Eric Stofan/James Gallagher) 14:58.
OT: 7. Eric Stofan HST (Jeremy McCartney (James Galagher) 1:06
Shots: HH 32, HST 25. Saves: Mason Rash (HH) 21, Connor Pilla (HST) 29.
PLYMOUTH WHITEMARSH 7, QUAKERTOWN 3
Luke Weikel scored four goals and Aidan Keogh also had a four-point night with a goal and three assists to lead the Colonials to the win.
The Colonials reeled off three straight goals in the opening 8:24 of the game. Weikel connected on back-to-back goals – the first with a Keogh assist and the second a power play goal with assists from Matthew Flynn and Keogh. Keogh’s short-handed goal with a Conlan Carpenter assist gave PW an early 3-0 lead. Jack Diliberto put the Panthers on the board with a power play goal, using an Eric Ozehoski assist.
In the second period, Diliberto found the net with another power play goal, this one with a Lucas Cunnane assist to make it a 3-2 game heading into the final period.
Weikel (Keogh assist) and Carpenter (Zach Spera assist) opened the third period with back-to-back goals to put the Panthers on top 5-2. Anthony Pagliei scored an unassisted goal for the Panthers, but Danny Smith and Weikel answered with goals for the Colonials. Jeffrey Menchen assisted on Weikel’s final goal.
PW goalie Kolton Galie was credited with 17 saves in the win. Quakertown’s Austin Stoudt had 27 saves.
Quakertown 1-1-1 3
Plymouth Whitemarsh 3-0-4 7
First period: 1. Luke Weikel PW (Aidan Keogh) 2:24; 2. Luke Weikel PW (Matthew Flynn/Aidan Keogh) 7:35; 3. Aidan Keogh PW (Conlan Carpenter) 8:24; 4. Jack Diliberto Q (Eric Orzehoski) 8:48.
Second period. 5. Jack Diliberto Q (Lucas Cunnane) 11:06.
Third period: 6. Luke Weikel PW (Aidan Keogh) 2:20; 7. Conlan Carpenter PW (Zach Spera) 2:39; 8. Anthony Pagliel Q, 3:42; 9. Danny Smith PW, 7:05; 10. Luke Weikel PW (Jeffrey Menchen) 11:53.
Shots: Quakertown 25, PW 34. Saves: Austin Stoudt (Q) 27, Christopher Maslij (PW) 4, Kolton Galie (PW) 17.
ABINGTON 6, WILLIAM TENNENT 3
Joe Stelico scored two goals and assisted on two others to lead the Ghosts’ attack. Stealing the spotlight on defense was goalie Ben Panella, whose 38 saves kept the Ghosts in the game.
Travis Ribkauskas (Jonathan Kreider assist) gave the Panthers an early lead, but Jordan Heydt (Nick Klinewski/Ian Heydt assist) evened the score. Tennent’s Justin Carelli and Stelacio exchanged goals in a 20-second span, and the score was still deadlocked. Stelacio’s second goal of the period – this one with assists from Tom Rourke and Matthew Kramer – gave the Ghosts a lead they would not lose.
Rourke’s power play goal with assists from Stelacio and Matthew Kramer put the Ghosts on top 4-2. Carrelli scored to pull the Panthers to within one heading into the final period. Cavin Loughlin and Thomas Lomas had the assists.
In the third period, the Ghosts tacked on a pair of goals – the first by Sean Faye with assists from Stelacio and Carpenter and the second by Kramer with a Sam Paulik assist.
Abington 3-1-2 6
William Tennent 2-1-0 3
First period: 1. Travis Ribkauskas WT (Jonathan Kreider) 3:05; 2. Jordan Heydt A (Nick Klinewski/Ian Heydt) 7:18; 3. Justin Carrelli WT, 7:43; 4. Joe Stelacio A, 7:58; 5. Joe Stelacio A (Tom Rourke/Matthew Kramer) 9:29.
Second period: 6. Tom Rourke A (Joe Stelacio/Matthew Kramer) 11:12; 7. Justin Carrelli WT (Gavin Loughlin/Thomas Lomas) 12:00.
Third period: 8. Sean Faye (Joe Stelacio/Griffin Carpenter) 6:55; 9. Matthew Kramer A (Sam Paulik) 8:32.
Shots: Abington 39, WT 41. Saves: Ben Panella (A) 38, Thomas Lomas (WT) 33.