North Allegheny Rolls In Third Period To Claim Class AAA Penguins Cup Crown
Thursday, March 21, 2013 | 12:19 AM
The North Allegheny Tigers got two third period goals from Joe Griffin to claim the 2013 Class AAA PIHL Penguins Cup with a 2-0 victory over the Peters Township Indians Wednesday night at Consol Energy Center. Bradford Thornburgh stopped all 20 shots he faced to pick up the shutout win, his first of the playoffs and fourth of the season.
It's the second Penguins Cup Championship for the Tigers, North Allegheny claimed the crown in 2007.
Griffin scored shorthanded with 11:50 remaining in regulation time as he was pressuring Carter Ekburg deep in the Peters Township zone. Ekburg tried to clear the puck behind the net, it went on goal and behind Brian Baker. It was Griffin’s second shorty of the playoffs, he scored against Bethel Park in the semifinals and third overall on the season. Griffin said after the game that he wasn’t even sure that he touched the puck, but the senior will take credit for it without question. He added the insurance goal with just under four minutes to play, set up by Matt Fantaski.
With the victory, the Tigers will meet Flyers Cup champions LaSalle on Saturday at 4:30 pm at the Iceworks in Aston for the Pennsylvania Cup championship. Peters Township falls for the third straight year in the Penguins Cup final, dropping the Class AA title to Bishop Canevin in 2011 and a 2-1 decision to Bethel Park last year.
Neither team scored in the opening period, Trevor Recktenwald had the best opportunity for the Indians from the top of the circle, a slap shot gloved by Thornburgh. Both teams were 0-2 on the power play in the first.
Both Thornburgh and Baker stood tall between the pipes in the second, again the Indians had two great chances, Adam Alavi hit the post and Bradley Tylenda went high above the net on a two on one rush, with the rebound being sent out in front with Tylenda robbed by Thornburgh with a glove save.
Peters Township had their chances in the third, Tylenda made a nifty move between defenders midway thru the period, he also was stopped on a slapper from the high slot with 5 ½ minutes left in regulation. The Indians pulled the goaltender with two minutes remaining, Tylenda hit the post on a shot from the center point with 80 seconds but the Indians could not solve Thornburgh on the night.
Neither team could score on the power play, NA finished 0 for 3, Peters Township 0-4. North Allegheny out shot Peters Township 25-20 for the game. It was the second victory for NA over Peters Township this season, Peters won the first meeting 6-4 on December 11th and North Allegheny won 2-1 two days later.
North Allegheny Tigers 0 – 0 – 2 = 2
Peters Township Indians 0 – 0 – 0 = 0
NA: Joe Griffin (3) SHG (Harry Kramer) 5:10
NA: Griffin (4) (Matt Fantaski) 13:13
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