PIHL Penguins Cup Recaps – Monday, March 10th
Tuesday, March 11, 2014 | 12:31 AM
A couple of dandies got the puck rolling on the PIHL’s Semifinals Week as the top four seeds in Class A took to the Robert Morris University Island Sports Complex center stage Monday night. Defending champ Quaker Valley was on the ropes, but could not be knocked out by Freeport while upstart Thomas Jefferson will continue their memorable season after eliminating Mars. Here are complete recaps from both Class A Semifinals games Monday, which can be heard archived here on MSA Sports at the link below.
PIHL PENGUINS CUP CLASS A SEMIFINALS:
Thomas Jefferson Jaguars 4 – Mars Fighting Planets 2
Mars (18-6-0), the #2 seed in the 2014 Class A playoffs and a three-time champion, lost to #3 seed Thomas Jefferson (17-5-2) twice in three regular season meetings. And yet the Planets appeared confident entering Monday night’s semifinal contest at RMU Island Sports Center. Why not, though?
After all, the loss in the season opener was so long ago, and the rubber match decision came on a night when Mars was without much of its star power due to travel team commitments. Add that to Mars trouncing Serra Catholic in the playoffs while TJ had trouble with Deer Lakes, and the odds could easily be seen as stacked against an upset, but that is just what occurred.
The Planets carried the play through the first half of period one, but it was the Jaguars lighting the lamp on a third chance rebound by Nick Tamburi with 6:46 on the clock. Zach Uhlyar threw it on net, and his linemate did the rest of the work, managing to beat Tyler Spreng.
Brendan Mason set up the next Thomas Jefferson goal less than three minutes later, blocking a Craig Mazzotta shot before throwing the puck up ice for a streaking Tommy Kimmick, who fired a wrister from the high slot that beat Spreng top corner for a 2-0 advantage through 17 minutes of action.
Uhlyar got the eventual game-winner just 18 seconds into period two, blasting a slap shot from the left point on the power play. Kimmick duplicated his first goal with 7:01 on the clock, and the Jags appeared poised to run away with the hockey game.
Not so fast, though, said Beau Heakins a mere 24 second later. He swept a low wrist shot in from the right wing on the power play, beating Nick Ripepi through the five-hole, and it was 4-1 when the Zamboni hit the ice.
Mars would strike just under six minutes into period three when Mazzotta picked up a loose puck along the goal line on the left wing side, and he roofed it. The Planets would continue to pour on the offense, but Ripepi and company held the fort, and some late penalties killed any final hope of a comeback.
Thomas Jefferson advances and will go for the fourth Penguins Cup in program history, the first since 2000, going up against two-time defending champion Quaker Valley on Monday at 4:30 PM from Consol Energy Center.
SCORE BY PERIODS:
Thomas Jefferson : 2-2-0=4
Mars : 0-1-1=2
SHOTS ON GOAL:
Mars 26, Thomas Jefferson 14
SCORING SUMMARY – 1st Period:
6:46 – TJ – Nick Tamburi (Zach Uhylar)
3:54 – TJ – Tommy Kimmick (Brendan Mason)
16:42 – TJ – Uhlyar PP (Kimmick, Tamburi)
7:01 – TJ – Kimmick (Mason, Brad Delenko)
6:37 – MA – Beau Heakins PP (Paul Maust)
11:07 – MA – Craig Mazzotta (Heakins, Keaton Hanna
Thomas Jefferson 1-for-3
PLAY OF THE GAME:
Game-winning goal from Zach Uhlyar
MSA THREE STARS:
#1 Tommy Kimmick, Thomas Jefferson – 2 G, 1 A
#2 Zach Uhlyar, Thomas Jefferson – GWG, 1 A
#3 Nick Ripepi, Thomas Jefferson – 24 SV
Quaker Valley Quakers 4 – Freeport Yellowjackets 3
Quaker Valley (23-1-0) scored two goals in the final 32 seconds, including a stunner with 0.2 left in regulation, shocking No. 4 Freeport, 4-3, on Monday night at Robert Morris University’s Island Sports Center in the PIHL Class A Penguins Cup Semifinals.
Jimmy Perkins netted a hat trick, including the tying goal with 32 seconds left in the game. Just 31.8 seconds later, Cameron Peterkin found the back of the net, sending the top-seeded Quakers to CONSOL Energy Center for the Class A Championship Game.
Perkins found the net first in the game, scoring on a powerplay wrist shot at 8:17 of the second period. Less than four minutes later, Freeport’s Cole Hepler would tie the game on a rebound shot that trickled through the pads of Quakers’ goalie Parker Sherry.
The score would stay tied until 1:01 into the third period when Hunter Kepple would jump in on a two-on-one rush and bury a pass from Stone Haberstroh, giving Freeport (15-6-2) a 2-1 lead. But Perkins would not be denied, evening the game on a breakway after winning a puck race against Freeport’s Jared Kapustik and beating Yellowjacket’s goalie Matt Huston with a backhanded shot at 10:11 into the period.
But Michael Frazetta would give Freeport a 3-2 lead just 2:47 later, banging in a Hepler pass as he stood all alone in front of the net.
The Yellowjackets would hold off Quaker Valley for the next three minutes, but see their lead vanish on Perkins’ third goal of the game and fifth of the playoffs. With the goaltender pulled, Perkins would go forward on a faceoff and sneak a shot over the left shoulder of Huston, tying the game with 32 seconds left.
Moments later, Perkins and Connor Quinn would both throw shots at Huston, leading to a rebound goal by Peterkin with 0.2 left on the clock, giving Quaker Vally the dramatic 4-3 win in what will surely go down as one of the top PIHL Semifinals ever played.
Quaker Valley will next play #3 Thomas Jefferson on Monday, March 17 at 4:30pm in the PIHL Class A Penguins Cup Championship. Perkins, who finished with three goals and an assist in the game, now has eight points in two playoff games. Quinn added three assists for the Quakers, who will look to win their third straight Class A Championship and fifth since 2006.
Score By Period:
Quaker Valley Quakers : 0-1-3=4
Freeport Yellowjackets : 0-1-2=3
Quaker Valley: 24
Bladerunners Scoring Summary:
(8:17) QV: Jimmy Perkins (powerplay) (Alex Quinn, Connor Quinn)
(12:02) F: Cole Hepler (Robert Reichenbaugh, Thomas Intrieri)
(1:01) F: Hunter Kepple (Stone Haberstroh, Jared Kapustik)
(10:11) QV: Perkins (2) (Ryan Lottes, Parker Sherry)
(12:58) F: Michael Frazetta (Hepler)
(16:28) QV: Perkins (3) (Connor Quinn)
(16:59) QV: Cameron Peterkin (Perkins, Connor Quinn)
Management Science Associates Three Stars:
1. Jimmy Perkins (Quaker Valley) (3 G, A)
2. Cameron Peterkin (Quaker Valley) (GWG)
3. Cole Hepler (Freeport) (G, A)
Mount Lebanon Rec Center Play of the Game:
Cameron Peterkin’s goal with 0.2 left on the clock, giving Quaker Valley the 4-3 comeback win.