By Rob DiAntonio @RJD_Photos
After defeating John Jay-Cross River in their second meeting during the regular season and playing to a tie in the first game, HORACE GREELEY was confident heading into the Putnam-Northern Westchester regional championship game.
But the top-seeded John Jay Wolves took control from the start and went on to hand the third-seeded Quakers a 5-1 loss on Saturday at Brewster Ice Arena.
“We did a better job in the two regular season games of staying out of the penalty box,” Greeley coach Dan Perito said. “I thought we had a good start but then took three penalties in the first (period), which took us out of the rhythm we were starting to establish. I thought John Jay did a good job of preventing second-chance opportunities and when we did get on the power play, they were able to kill all of our opportunities.”
John Jay had its 2-0 lead cut in half when Ben Cohen scored an unassisted breakaway goal with 8:55 left in the second period. But the Wolves had the answer, scoring just two minutes later to make it a two-goal game again.
Arye Wolberg and Ben Madden combined for 31 saves for the Quakers, who finished their season with a 6-4-1 record.
“I told the team after the game last night I couldn’t be prouder of this team and we could go on to win 10 straight sectional titles, I still would hold this team at the top,” Perito said. “Everything that we sacrificed to make sure we had a full season and had a chance to get to the finals is a true testament to their character and dedication to our program.”
Greeley gained an early lead and cruised past No. 2 MAHOPAC 9-3 in the semifinals on Thursday.
“We did a great job of establishing our forecheck and forcing turnovers,” Perito said, “and countering off those turnovers to create scoring chances.”
Gabe Adams and Cohen paced the Quakers with three goals and an assist apiece. Ilan Laurence notched a goal and three assists. Jared Rothman added a goal while Dylan Mutkoski had two assists. Wolberg made 24 saves.
Ryan Caraher netted two goals to lead the Indians. Jake Roberts had one goal while Mike Horan made 33 saves in net.
Greeley easily disposed of sixth-seeded MOUNT PLEASANT, 8-1, in the quarterfinals on Wednesday.
Adams and Rothman (1 assist) each had two goals to lead the Quakers. Charlie Spar had a goal and two assists while Joe Lamb added a goal and an assist. Jacob Rothman and
Ethan Stogsdill each added a goal. Ben Madden made 30 saves.
Robert Criscuolo scored the IceCats goal on a feed from Matt Labriola. John Sarfaty made 29 saves in net.
Sixth-seeded WHITE PLAINS fell to No. 3 Rye 11-2 in the quarterfinals of the Southern Westchester tournament.
John Myers and Daniel Cardozo had a goal each for the Tigers. Anna Chochrek (32 saves) and Sean Keenan combined for 45 saves.
No. 4-seed BYSNS (Brewster/Yorktown/Somers/North Salem) saw senior G Matt Gergley stand on his head to make saves (39 in all) until John Jay pulled away in the third period for a 5-2 semifinal win. The Herd gave the Wolves all they could handle and should be proud of a terrific season.