March 26, 1997

Council Rock’s Shaun Young seized the moment of opportunity. When the puck skipped off the stick of Germantown Academy defenseman Danny McDonald, Young snared it near the blue line and headed for a one-on-one duel with goalie Sam Weiner. “I saw the five-hole [between Weiner’s pads] open up,” said Young, who had raced in from the left boards. “At that point, I just dropped my right shoulder and I fired the puck past him. I was so happy.” Young’s third-period goal lifted Rock to a 2-1 victory over archrival GA in the semifinals of the Class AAA Flyers Cup tournament Monday at the Face-Off Circle in Warminster. Young’s game-winner came with 8 minutes, 21 seconds remaining. “He just beat me,” said Weiner, a four-year starter who helped lead the Patriots to Class AAA Flyers Cup titles in 1994 and 1995. “There are no two ways about it.” The Indians are headed to the Class AAA finals for the first time since 1991. They will meet Inter-County Scholastic Hockey League champion Malvern Prep in a best-of-three series beginning at 8 tonight at the Face-Off Circle. “We just came ready to play,” said Young, a senior winger who missed much of last season with a broken wrist. “We knew the game was going to come down to who wanted it the most.” Rock finished second to the Patriots during the Suburban High School Hockey League regular season. It turned the tables on GA in the league’s best-of-three championship series, winning two games to one. Said Young: “Germantown Academy is our archrival. Beating them makes our season.”
In the final game, the Indians grabbed a 1-0 lead early in the second period on a goal by senior winger Matt Skinner. GA evened the score at the 13:21 mark when junior center Peter Narog took a crossing pass from junior defenseman Justin Holmes and directed it past junior goalie Ryan Young. Rock outshot the Patriots by 12-4 in the second period

and by 30-17 for the game. GA was denied a berth in the Class AAA Flyers Cup finals for the first time in five seasons. The Patriots were swept by La Salle, two games to none, in the championship series last season. “It’s always disappointing to lose, but especially when it’s against Council Rock,” Weiner said. “They’ve been our top competition the last four years.”
Game 2 of the Rock-Malvern Prep championship series is scheduled for 10 p.m. Friday at the CoreStates Spectrum (following an American Hockey League game between the Phantoms and Hershey). Game 3, if necessary, will be played at 8 p.m. Monday at the Skatium in Havertown.

Conwell-Egan. For coach Rich Slack’s squad, it was a nightmarish ending to an otherwise successful season. The Eagles were routed, 11-1, by Council Rock last week in the quarterfinal round of the Class AAA Flyers Cup tournament. The Indians held a 7-0 lead heading into the third period. “We were just outclassed,” Slack said. “They chewed us up and spit us out.” Rock outshot C-E by 45-15. “Their first line [Young, Skinner, and senior center Shaun McGinty] beat us up and down the ice all game long,” Slack said. Senior center Dan Lenza accounted for C-E’s only goal, scoring unassisted with 7:23 remaining in the game. The Eagles went 19-3-1 during the Lower Bucks County Scholastic Hockey League regular season and finished as runners-up to Archbishop Ryan. They lost to Ryan, two games to one, in the league’s best-of-three championship series.
“The season was not a total disaster,” Slack said. “We fell short, however, of achieving two of our goals. First, we wanted to win our league championship. Secondly, we wanted to advance to the finals of the Flyers Cup.” C-E routed Washington Township (N.J.), 8-2, in the qualifying round of the Flyers Cup.

In addition to Lenza, Slack loses three regulars to graduation: goalie Brian Urban, defenseman Bill Mooney, and center Bill Bobbing. “This group of seniors helped elevate this program to the next level,” said the coach. “They are a very special group of boys.”

North Penn. The Knights more than held their own against SHSHL competition this season, posting a 16-2-1 mark during the regular season and winning the National Division title. The squad met its match, though, when it played Bensalem of the LBCSHL, in the qualifying round of the Class AA Flyers Cup tournament. Despite North Penn’s 31-22 advantage in shots, the Owls eased to a 6-1 win. “We had been finding ways to win all season,” North Penn coach Tony Mauriello said. “Against Bensalem, we just came out and threw a clunker.” Sophomore center Neil Chiaradio led Bensalem with five points, collecting three goals and two assists. Junior winger/center Randy Ron-Gione added a goal and three assists. Down by 6-0, the Knights averted a shutout when junior winger Dan Cook scored with 10:34 to play. Sen- ior winger Rob Everett assisted. Said Mauriello: “We had a great season, far better than anybody anticipated. “I didn’t expect our record [23-6-2 overall] to be as good as it was.”

By Rick O’Brien
The Philadelphia Inquirer