CB South Edged in OT by Downingtown East in Flyers Cup Final

Downingtown East edged Central Bucks South 4-3 in a classic Flyers Cup title game on Thursday. Photos provided courtesy of Dara N. King Photography.

By Ben Reese

HATFIELD -- Disappointment.

There was no mistaking that’s what Central Bucks South's ice hockey players were feeling after Downingtown East scored a power play goal in overtime to win the Flyers Cup 4-3 at Ice World Thursday night.

It was written all over the Titan captain's face. Matt Stoll, his voice cracking and fighting back tears, tried to explain the feeling.

"It's tough," he said. "It's really tough.

"Knowing that that was the last time I'll wear this jersey. Of course you want to go out on top, but I'm proud of the way our guys played. I really wanted it to go differently but I'm proud to be a Titan."

It might have been one of the best Flyers Cup finals ever or at least in recent years. The game went back and forth, up and down the ice with neither team holding a commanding edge.

"It's awesome, playing at such a fast pace," said Stoll. "Knowing for some players that this is the highest level we'll ever play, it's awesome.

"It's truly an honor to make it this far. That's really the word I would use. It's an honor."

The two teams were very evenly matched. It truly was anyone's game.

"They have a strong defense; their goaltender does a great job," CB South coach Shaun McGinty said. "They're a great transitioning team.

"We have strong forwards, we have good defense, we have good goaltending. The two teams that should have been playing in this game were playing. We just happened to come out on the short end of it."

South took the first lead of the game in the first period. Reis Braccio scored the game’s first goal with an assist from Joe DeLaurentis at 5:37 of the period.

But it was obvious that the 1-0 lead wasn't going to hold up.

At the 12:22 mark of the second period, the Cougars evened the score. Luca Pisani scored on the power play to tie the game.

With 1:08 remaining in the second stanza, the Titans again took the lead. Braccio scored his second goal of the game with the assist going to Dominic Patrone.

Then came the third period. South upped its lead to 3-1 on DeLaurentis' tally with 3:30 gone.

It didn't hold up. Jack Barton scored on the power play for East and Patrick Bobko tied the score again with 5:03 left in the third period, forcing overtime.

Pisani ended any drama in the 10-minute extra period. He took a pass from Michael Bolger and scored at the 7:50 mark on the power play to end the game.

It was that power play which bothered McGinty.

"It was a good game," he said. "It's a shame that it ended in a power play at the end of the game in overtime.

"You can't make that call (a holding penalty). It's overtime; it's the Flyers Cup.

"They're letting a lot of stuff go. In an overtime game with less than three minutes, you can't call that.

"Kudos to them. They have a great power play. If you give them an opportunity, they're going to capitalize."

As a senior and the captain, Stoll said a lot of things from the heart. After all, he had participated in four Flyers Cups in his high school career.

"I can honestly say I have a lot of brothers," he said. "Came out and played with great players -- Connor Matsinger, Thomas Liberta, Damon DeLaurentis, Joe DeLaurentis, a lot of great guys.

"Just knowing that I'll have brothers like that for the rest of my life is truly amazing."

As for the game, Stoll realized that it was a contest of two talented teams.

"When it comes to two great teams," the Titans’ captain said, "our coach always says it comes down to the intangibles.

"They have a good power play; we have a good power play. They have a good penalty kill; we have a good penalty kill.

"It just ends up being who is going to do the little things right. They got the upper hand."

Pisani was selected as the Most Valuable Player. He was joined on the all-tournament team by Cougar teammates Cohn, Alex Fox and goalie Matt Shandler along with the Titans' Stoll and Frank Carter.

Downingtown East 4, CB South 3 (OT)
Downingtown East                0          1          2          1 – 4
CB South                              1          1          1          0 – 3
First period: 1, Reis Braccio CBS (Joe DeLaurentis) 5:37.
Second period: 2, Luca Pisani DE (Mark Stankiewicz, Eric Stankiewicz) 12:22 PP; 3, Braccio CBS (Dominic Patrone) 15:52.
Third period: 4, DeLaurentis CBS (unassisted) 3:30; 5, Jack Barton DE (Justin Cohn) 5:45 PP; 6, Patrick Bobko DE (unassisted) 11:57.
Overtime: 7, Pisani DE (Michael Bolger) 7:50 PP.
Shots: DE 35, CBS 21. Saves: Matt Shandler (DE) 18, Tim White (CBS) 31.