Conestoga’s Al Lutz celebrates with teammate Geordie Shaw after scoring the overtime game winner against CB East in semi-final play.

March 23, 1987

Conestoga and Malvern Prep breezed into the Flyers Cup championship last week by sweeping the final- round playoffs of their respective leagues. Malvern drubbed Haverford High 8-2 in Monday’s second game of their best of three series of the Eastern High School Hockey League to take the title. Conestoga, meanwhile, beat Downingtown 4-1 the same night, then squeaked out a 5-4 overtime win the following night for the title in the Inter-County Scholastic Hockey League. The two teams will compete for the Flyers Cup with four other area league champions in a two division round robin that will also include Central Bucks East, Bishop Egan, William Tennent and Delaware’s William Penn high schools. And tonight’s opening game at the Havertown Skatium looks to be an exciting one as Malvern and Conestoga face off in a Main Line matchup. Malvern’s Friars have now compiled an overall 21-0 record en route to the Cup and, according to coach Tom Eagan, still are not ready to taste defeat. “Though we expected to [make the Flyers Cup, it’s always nice to reach your goal,” Eagan said after taking the EHSHL title. “But it’s time to reach an even bigger goal. We’ll find out now what it’s really all about.” On Monday, the Friars handled Hav- erford High School with ease, holding the Fords to just 12 shots on net while peppering Fords’ goaltender Erik Vogel with 35. The Friars jumped to a lead in the first period with a pair of short-handed goals scored less than a minute apart. Steve Kinsley scored first for Malvern with an assist going to Al Tedesco, before Mike Tordone scored unassisted to make it a 2-0 game. A goal by Chic Kelly later in the period boosted the Friars lead to 3-0. Kinsley scored his second goal of the night on a power-play midway through the second period. A Haverford goal by Derek Amoroso then cut the margin to 4-1, but the Friars continued to dominate play, scoring two more times before the period was out to take a commanding 6-1 lead.
Amoroso scored again for the Fords in the final period to make it a 6-2 game, but scores from the Friars’ Kinsley and Matt Lannen ended the game at 8-2 and finished Haverford’s season. Kinsley, who was credited with four goals and an assist, will be relied upon to keep up the scoring in Flyers Cup play. “He’s been pretty consistent for us,” Eagan said of the winger whose 30 regular season goals were tops in the EHSHL. “But really, the whole team’s been consistent. Offense has always been our strongest point this year.” Likewise on Monday night, Conestoga took care of Downingtown with little trouble in the opening game of their playoff. The Pioneers scored twice in the opening period with goals by Doug Kisela and Geordie Shaw. After a goal by Doug Smink increased the Pioneers’ lead to 3 goals in the second period, Shawn Buckley narrowed the lead to 3-1 for Downingtown on a power-play goal assisted by Scott Weil. With just 31 seconds remaining, however, Don McEwan scored for Conestoga to regain the 3 goal edge.

The Pioneers held on to the 4-1 lead through the final period of play a tight, scoreless period that may have been an indication of what was to follow the next night. “Our kids played good defensive hockey in the first game and we forechecked the heck out of them,” Pioneers coach Taylor Railton said. “But Downingtown played a lot better and wanted to open things up more in the second game.” In the Tuesday night contest, Downingtown got on the board first with a first period goal by Mike Torrance. Al Lutz came back to tie the game at 1-1 for Conestoga before the period was out, however, with an assist credited to John Parisi.

The second period saw Conestoga take a 2-1 lead when Shaw scored unassisted, then lose the edge as Downingtown came back with a pair of goals, making it 3-2. The lead switched hands for the fourth time when Lutz and John Ma- son scored goals to push the Pioneers to a 43 edge. A bench penalty on Conestoga for too many men on the ice, however, gave Downingtown a power-play in the last minute, and they capitalized on it with just 16 seconds remaining when Mike Torrance scored on a breakaway to send the game into overtime. The two teams played even throughout the extra 5-minute period. But Conestoga defenseman Sibby Brown better known for thwarting scoring attempts than for attempting to score let go a wrist shot with 1 second remaining that hit Downingtown goalie John Gray’s glove hand, then fell over the goal line as the buzzer sounded. Downingtown disputed the goal, saying that time had expired, but the referees signaled it good.
Downingtown ended its season with an overall 19-3 record, while Conestoga advances to the Flyers Cup with an overall record of 20-1-1.

CREDIT: The Philadelphia Inquirer

By David T. Shaw