Newark, Del. — Salesianum (5-3-2) and St. Mark’s (7-1-2) both extended their winning streaks on Monday night (Dec. 23) at the Patriot Ice Center. The Sals earned their fourth consecutive victory with an 8-2 decision over Downingtown East (3-7-0), while the Spartans ran their current streak to five after beating Marple-Newtown (0-9-1), 6-2.
Salesianum 8, Downingtown East 2
Salesianum established their advantage early and refused to let up en route to a facile 8-2 victory over the Cougars. Cam Bergeman’s 17th, 18th and 19th goals of the season led the Sals with a hat trick, and Ethan Scharp and James Bell contributed two goals apiece.
Bell’s two goals came at 3:46 and 6:03 in the first period to give Salesianum a 2-0 lead, and an easy wraparound goal from Scharp from a Jake Ehrlich assist led to an early exit for Downingtown East goalie Ian Warter, who allowed three goals on just seven shots faced in the first 9:25. Bergeman extended the Sals’ lead to four with an unassisted power play goal at 13:27, beating relief goalie Giacomo DiCola from close range.
The Salesianum shutout ended with a Cougars power-play tally in the final 1:11 of the first, when Jacob McCallion put away the rebound of an Andrew Ceglia shot.
A mid-period altercation marred the second, but Salesianum extended their lead to 6-1 with two goals late in the frame.
In the seventh minute of the second, Bergeman broke out of his own zone and registered a shot on DiCola before tripping Downingtown East defenceman Sean Woods below the goal while vying for the rebound. Carter Vela tackled Bergeman and landed a couple punches in retaliation, and was issued a fighting major and a game misconduct for his actions. The Sals received a one-minute power play after Bergeman’s double minor for tripping and roughing, but failed to convert. After full-strength play had resumed, Bergeman potted his second goal of the night at 12:28 with a wraparound to the right corner, followed by a Frankie Pallante tally just 13 seconds later.
Downingtown East’s strongest period was the third, in which they recorded 15 shots on Salesianum goalie Aiden Kikut and notched their second goal. With Christian Kinsler off for roughing early in the period, Ceglia scored his ninth goal of the season off a Karl Zlogar assist at 3:06. Scharp responded for the Sals at 8:13, batting the puck past DiCola from the top of the crease off a Johnny Lee rebound.
With the game well out of reach in the final five minutes, Bergeman split defenders and fired a hard wrist shot past DiCola from between the circles to complete his hat trick and seal an 8-2 decision.
Kikut stopped 25 of 27 shots faced in victory to improve to 5-3-2; DiCola stopped 20 of 25 shots faced in relief for Downingtown West. Both teams were 2-for-4 on the power play; Downingtown West scored both of their goals while a man up.
The victory lifted Salesianum into a three-way tie for second with Father Judge and Roman Catholic in the PCL Division; all three teams trail Cardinal O’Hara (7-3-0) by two points.
Salesianum’s first game of 2020 will be at Oaks Center Ice against Spring-Ford on Monday, Jan. 6.
St. Mark’s 6, Marple-Newtown 2
Despite the absences of goalie Sam Griffith and captain Graham Kline, the St. Mark’s Spartans worked out of an early 2-1 deficit to defeat the Marple-Newtown Tigers, 6-2.
Colin Donegan and William Powell both scored for the Tigers in the opening 16 minutes, while Kelly Stroik was the only Spartan to beat goalie Matthew Beatty through 23 first-period shots.
The Spartans bounced back with a five-goal second period — and Will Ralsten scored all five. After tying the game 22 seconds into the frame, Ralsten one-timed a Nick Lawson centring pass into the Marple-Newtown net to give the Spartans their first lead of the game at :55. Ralsten’s further three goals all came in the final three minutes of the third period — a 10-foot wrist shot at 13:05 and a net-front jam-in at 14:29 before putting away a Luke Najera rebound amid a 4-on-0 attack in the closing three seconds of the period.
Neither team scored in a third period during which neither team could establish ample momentum to generate quality chances.
Najera provided strong support for St. Mark’s, contributing three assists. Sean Swain saved 11 of 13 shots in his second goaltending victory for the Spartans, while Beatty stopped 45 of 51 shots in defeat.
The Spartans, who rank third in the 10-team Liberty Division, return to action on Friday, Jan. 3, traveling to Ice Line to face Great Valley-Phoenixville.