Mt. Pleasant Can’t Hold off Pelham’s Comeback in a Tough 6-3 Loss

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By Jonathan Martirano

Mt. Pleasant Ice Cats(11-7-2) @ Pelham Pelicans(12-7-1)

Tuesday, February 7 at the Ice Hutch

It was a back and forth battle between the Mt. Pleasant Ice Cats and Pelham Pelicans on Tuesday night, which resulted in a 6-3 Pelicans victory.  The Ice Cats started things off only a minute into the game at 16:03 after Louis Sdao sent the puck across to Daniel Kauber who stickhandled his way into the back of the net for an early 1-0 lead.  The Ice Cats wouldn’t stop there as less than a minute later at 15:11, Sdao won a faceoff to Nicholas Delia in the high slot who shot one past the goalie to take a commanding 2-0 lead less than two minutes after the initial puck drop.  This quick start led to a surprising goaltender change for Pelham, and it paid off well for them as they cut the lead in half only 44 seconds later at 14:27, after Will Crotty took a low shot on the right side boards that went in- already making the game 2-1 2:33 into it.  After the scoring buzz, things cooled down, but Pelham had some solid scoring opportunities to keep some momentum.  That momentum carried with them to 6:46 to tie the game at 2-2, when Griff Evans took a bouncing puck for a breakaway with the goalie, and made a nifty backhand-forehand deke to finish the play and score. But the Pelicans were not finished just yet as at 2:39 Crotty made a strong forecheck behind the Ice Cats net, and fed a wide-open Luke Green in front to take the 3-2 lead. “I think Pelham tried to simplify their game by dumping pucks deep and getting pucks on net to shift the momentum back.” Ice Cats senior Joey Engleman said on the Pelicans making a strong comeback after a quick two goals.  The first period ended with the Pelicans up by 1.

In the second period, Pelham would add to their lead just over a minute into the frame at 15:49 when Crotty notched his 2nd goal of the game off a shot in front from Evans to make the score 4-2 Pelham.  Only 30 seconds later however, the Pelicans would be penalized, but they killed off the Ice Cats power play.  Pelham then used their momentum to add another goal to their lead at 11:04 with Green stuffing one in backhand in front for his second goal for the 5-2 lead and their fifth unanswered goal after being down 2-0. Mt. Pleasant needed some offense, and quickly, if they wanted to get back into the game and they did so at 7:27.  Nicholas Delia made a pass to Joey Engleman on a 2 on 1 and Engleman shot one top corner to cut the Pelham lead to 5-3.  Both teams would have multiple scoring chances, throughout the rest of the period, along with a power play for the Ice Cats, but the score would remain the same heading into the third period.

It was all or nothing for Mt. Pleasant in the third period and they needed to score one early to have a chance in this hockey game and at 11:07, Daniel Kauber took a shot from the corner which appeared to go in, but was unfortunately waved off as the puck never fully crossed the goal line.  This was a big blow to the Ice Cats, who already had a tough game thus far.  The Ice Cats kept pushing with numerous close calls, but couldn’t budge one past the Pelham netminder.  With 5:21 remaining, the Cats and Pelicans would get coincidental minor penalties, but nothing came from it.  With 2:54 minutes remaining, Mt. Pleasant called a timeout to regroup their team, but the Pelicans defended their attack and Evans added his second of the day with the empty net goal for some insurance.

“We knew from the beginning of the season that we would face them.Win or loss, we wanted to come into the playoffs playing our best hockey of the season. Now that we saw them, we now know what we need to do going forward.”  Mt. Pleasant Coach Alex Munoz said.


North Rockland Scores 3 Unanswered Goals to Hand BYSNS a 3-1 Loss

BYSNS Bisons(5-14-1) @ North Rockland Raiders(6-11-1)

Friday, February 10 at Sport-O-Rama

The BYSNS (Brewster-Yorktown-Somers-North Salem) Bisons took on the North Rockland Raiders on Friday afternoon in a tough 3-1 loss.  In the first period, BYSNS came out strong with a pair of big hits and close scoring chances.  The Bisons continued their strong start and got some luck at 5:14 when North Rockland’s Ryan O’Shea tripped up Matteo Guastadisegni and sent the Bisons to the power play.  And only a little over a minute into the man-advantage, Charlie Heese of BYSNS took a shot from the right side boards which hit the goalie’s pad and bounced up and into the back of the net for the opening goal.  The score would stay the same for the remaining four minutes and BYSNS would lead 1-0 going into the second period.

It didn’t take long for some action in the second period when North Rockland had multiple grade-A chances minutes in but goalie Ty Wingfield of BYSNS made some great stops to keep the puck out of the net.  However, not long after those exceptional saves at 14:14, Danny Anello would throw the puck in front from behind the net, and it would hit off the back of Wingfield’s skate to tie the game at 1-1.  Soon after the tying goal, the Raiders would take the lead at 10:21 after Christian Gokey stripped the puck from a Bisons defender at the blue line and sent the puck across to Austin Lupo who finished the play to make it 2-1.  And the Raiders wouldn’t stop there after Kevin Cahill sent James Kilduff a clean breakout pass, which led to a fast break down the left side, and a top-shelf snipe for Kilduff to up the lead to 3-1.  BYSNS would have some quality scoring chances, but would get in some trouble after Max Messina went off for holding at 2:39.  The Bisons held off the Raiders power play and headed into the third period down two.  After the strong start of BYSNS, North Rockland extinguished the heat and took the game over.

Shortly after the start of the final frame, BYSNS got into some more penalty trouble when Owen Cunnigham was sent off for a slash at 13:08 and Michael Bonelli directly after for a high stick at 12:59.  North Rockland had some adequate scoring chances on their 5 on 3 power play but luckily for BYSNS, North Rockland could not convert.  The Bisons had some quality chances of their own throughout the rest of the period, with numerous chances off redirections, but couldn’t put one in.  As time winded down, BYSNS called for a timeout at 2:40 and pulled their goalie for the extra attacker.  However, with 12 seconds to go, the BYSNS got a roughing penalty, which ultimately iced the game and the North Rockland Raiders came out victorious with a 3-1 win.

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