Trib HSSN PIHL Player of the Week: Upper St. Clair’s Devin Rohrich
Sunday, February 3, 2019 | 6:06 PM
This past week, the new TribLIVE High School Sports Network PIHL Player of the Week scored 10 points.
He scored two goals and two assists in Upper St. Clair’s 9-5 win Monday over Hempfield. He then assisted on five goals while scoring another Thursday in a victory over Armstrong.
With the efforts, Panthers’ junior forward Devin Rohrich has 41 points on the season, which is second in Class AA, behind only his teammate, freshman forward Anthony Carone, who has 43. Rohrich’s 25 goals are the most in the classification.
“He’s a kid that takes a lot on his shoulders, so when we had a slow start Monday he made it a point to get a couple and set some others up,” USC coach Justin Becinski said. “Thursday, he had a great game; it was like every pass he made went in. Having five assists is a game some pros would love to have.”
According to Becinski, Rohrich has improved since Day 1 of this season.
“He knows how to backcheck and turn it up the ice, then either put it in the net or make a play for someone else to do that,” Becinski said. “He’s taken a big turn from even the first game of the year. It was like he just wanted to go, go, go then, but now he’s doing it the whole way up and down the ice.”
Becinski said that Rohrich is the type of player a team needs.
“Guys see how he works and how he plays and feed off it,” Becinski said. “We’ve got forwards backchecking as a result and doing what they need to do to get back. We need every guy to play like he does.”
One of the other things Rohrich has done well is limit bad decisions and penalties. He’s only taken three minor penalties in 16 games played.
“For the most part he’s very smart. Sometimes, he tries to do a little too much, but that’s seldom,” Becinski said. “There’s times I need him to do something and he does it, but not too much. He’s grown a lot and taken on a big leadership role for our team this season.”
A lot of time on the ice for Rohrich is spent alongside senior forward Quinn Giacobbe, who is also a top-10 point scorer in the classification.
Becinski said the two have been playing together for a long time in amateur hockey, which helps them feed off each other and create success.
The coach also said the younger guys look up to those two, as well as others.
“They see our leaders go out and play a certain way and want to follow suit,” Becinski said. “It’s a key to our success.”
Rohrich and the Panthers will hit the ice again Tuesday, for a 7:10 p.m. puck drop at Center Ice Arena against Penn-Trafford.
PIHL Honorable Mentions (week Of Jan. 28):
Richie Karapandi posted a 27-save shutout for the North Allegheny Tigers in a 3-0 win over Central Catholic Tuesday in Class AAA action. Mt. Lebanon’s one-goal, three-assist effort helped lead the Blue Devils to a 6-0 win over Butler Monday. Luke Husak had two goals and two assists in the same game.
Hampton’s Justin Adamski scored two goals and assisted on the third regulation goal, before scoring the winning goal in the shootout in the Talbots’ 4-3 victory over previously-unbeaten Pine-Richland Monday in Class AA. In Mars’ home-game clinching win Monday, Jackson Krock scored twice and had two assists. USC’s Anthony Carone had two goals and four assists in the Monday win, before posting a multi-point effort in Thursday’s win. Also, Moon’s Lukas Konecsni had 42 saves on 43 shots faced.
In Class A, Tyler Howcroft of West Allegheny had a hat trick and an assist in a 12-3 win over Freeport. In Meadville’s win over previously-unbeaten Montour, Nick Frantz scored two goals and had three helpers, while Cohl Weber had a hat trick and had two assists. Ryan Eisel scored four times for Montour, while two-time Player of the Week Ritchy Froehlich Jr. had four assists.
Finally, in Division II, Alexander Gesk scored four goals in Connellsville’s 10-3 win against Trinity. Knoch’s Lance Cotton had a goal, the game-winner and three assists in the Knights’ 8-4 win over Bishop Canevin.
Kyle Dawson is a freelance writer.