Chartiers Valley hockey looking to turn corner
Thursday, October 10, 2019 | 4:20 PM
The Chartiers Valley hockey team may have started the season with a pair of losses, but the Colts have fought to the final buzzer in each game.
Chartiers Valley opened the season with a 3-1 loss to North Hills. The team then fell to South Park, 2-1, in a shootout.
“We’ve been keeping games close,” Chartiers Valley coach Paul Bonetti said. “But we have had trouble scoring. We haven’t scored an even-strength goal through two games. We have had good goaltending and done well clearing the puck from the zone.”
To jump-start the offense, the staff may consider switching up the lines. Chartiers Valley won a tournament in the preseason in Columbus. The team has stuck with those lines but haven’t found similar results.
“Our season is only 18 games,” Bonetti said. “We are already two games in. We don’t have 82 games to tinker around. We need to make a more firm decision. We switched things up a little in the third period (against South Park).”
The Colts entered the season with a young roster. Chartiers Valley returned only three players with extensive varsity experience — seniors Luke Vaughn and Trevor Colberg and junior Jax Fodor.
“As the coach, I am the captain of the ship,” Bonetti said. “But the captain needs deck hands. Those guys help me out with the younger players. Those guys step up when I’m not around.”
Fodor is leading the team through the first two games with an a goal and assist. Vaughn has added an assist.
There has been plenty of excitement with the new faces to the varsity roster. Bonetti described junior Ryan Kanter as an “energy player.” The Colts are also getting defenseman Andew Evans back to near full health. The sophomore suffered an injury during baseball season and was unable to play with the team during the summer.
“The very short period of time he has been back, he has been a big contributor,” Bonetti said. “I think he will only will improve.”
The team has used a pair of goalies to start the season. Sam Watchek made 39 saves in the loss to South Park. Logan Marnik stopped 27 shots in the setback against North Hills.
“It is great to have that kind of tandem,” Bonetti said. “They are going to be ready to stop the shots. We just need to start putting the puck into the net on the other end.”
The Lions are stepping up this season, moving from Class A to AA. The Lions compete in the Southwest Division against Baldwin, Montour and West Allegheny.
The Lions started the season with a 1-1 record, falling to West Allegheny, 3-2, and beating Montour, 5-4. Ethan Syzmanski is leading the team with three goals and two assists.
The Crusaders opened the season with two very different results. Canevin topped Trinity, 7-1, before falling to Carrick, 10-1. Cameron Ropchock is leading the team with three goals and an assist.
Canevin competes in the South Division of Class B. Other teams in the division include Carrick, Ringgold, Trinity, Elizabeth Forward, Morgantown and Connellsville.
The Crusaders are a co-op of four different schools: Canevin, Keystone Oaks, Seton-La Salle and Our Lady of the Sacred Heart.