SOL SHSHL Ice Hockey Wrap (1-9-19)

Ben Reese recaps all the action in PW’s win over previously undefeated Wissahickon in SHSHL action.

By Ben Reese

HATFIELD -- In a meeting between the two most prolific scoring teams in the Suburban High School Hockey League, you would think that it would be a shootout with the team scoring the last goal being the winner.

In a sense, that is what happened between Plymouth Whitemarsh and Wissahickon. And, truth be told, PW did score the final goal but it was the Colonials' seventh of the game on its way to a 7-4 victory over the Trojans.

Plymouth Whitemarsh smothered the Wissahickon scorers throughout the game. The Colonials - though outshot 37-24 - still managed to control the high-powered Trojans offense.

Much of that credit goes to Colonial goalie Ben Yuter. He was solid between the pipes, stopping 33 shots and keeping his team in the game when the going got rough, especially as PW killed off a two-man advantage for Wissahickon.

"He had an amazing bounce-back game," PW coach Josh Aiello said of his goalie, who had given up nine goals in a loss to Lower Moreland. "We talked before the games about things we want to accomplish and one of the things for him was focusing on rebound control.

"I think he did an excellent job with that. When he had a shot from outside, not only did he stop the puck, but he put the rebound into the corner.

"I'm very proud of him. This is one of the best games of his high school career."

Pretty high praise for the goalie. How did he earn it?

"Just staying intense the whole time," Yuter said. "Watching every shot and seeing where everyone is and playing every shift like it's my last.

"We've always had a bit of a rivalry against Wissahickon. They were undefeated and we just needed to show them what's up, who's the boss in this league."

Wissahickon coach Ken Harrington saw his offense sputter under the pressure from the PW defense.

"Obviously, we scored some goals," he said, "but they were outworking us. We weren't adjusting.

"They were collapsing on us and we weren't adjusting. They were corralling us and we weren't responding.

"We had a couple of guys who were under the weather, but they were a game-time decision and it's no excuse. They were outworking us."

One example of that came when the Colonials' Colin Franzoni scored a short-handed goal. It came with 11 seconds left in the second period.

"I saw two guys (from Wissahickon) going in there and I tried to cut them off," Franzoni said. "I saw one turn back and I saw he was open so I busted on down and got the open pass, shot it and it went in."

That goal gave the Colonials a 5-3 lead after two periods. They added two more in the third while allowing one to the Trojans for the final 7-4 score.

Aiello had nothing but good things to say about Wissahickon.

"Definitely got to tip your hat to a very good Wissahickon team," he said. "They found a way the entire year to win games or tie games. They haven't had any games that showed up in the loss column.

"The fortunate thing is we have a great group of guys in our locker room that are hungry. Over the winter break when we didn't have any games, these guys still went out and played open hockey.

"This is the first game this year that our program played a complete game, from the dropping of the puck in the first period to the whistle at the end of the game. That's the difference in high school sports, who's going to want it. Who's going to pour their heart out.

"In this game, you saw our defensemen laying out to block shots. It's a lot easier to just let a puck go past you than to have a slap shot coming at you and you decide to lay your body down to block it."

From the beginning, it appeared that there were going to be a lot of goals scored. The two teams split four goals in the first period as Franzoni and Peter Troy scored for PW and Bryan and Sean Garry found the net for the Trojans.

It continued that way through much of the second period as Aiden Keogh tallied a goal for the Colonials and Bryan Garry for Wissahickon. But then things changed with Dean Keller scoring at 12:29 and Franzoni notching his short-handed goal at 15:49.

Wissahickon got one back to cut the score to 5-4 at the 36-second mark of the third period on a goal by Daniel Glazer. But Gavin Mulligan and Keller finished things off for the Colonials.

It is the first defeat for the Trojans this season. The win puts the Colonials that much closer to Wissahickon's tail.

Plymouth Whitemarsh 7, Wissahickon 4
Plymouth Whitemarsh          2          3          2 – 7
Wissahickon                           2          1          1 – 4
First period: 1, Colin Franzoni PW (unassisted) 9:10; 2, Bryan Garry W (Sean Garry) 9:31; 3, Peter Troy PW (Dean Keller) 15:06; 4, S. Garry W (B. Garry, Nicholas Hussa) 15:36 PP.
Second period: 5, Aidan Keogh PW (Troy) 5;43; 6, B. Garry W (S. Garry) 11:55; 7, Keller PW (unassisted) 12:29; 8, Franzoni PW (Jake Weikel) 15:49 SH.
Third period: 9, Daniel Glazer W (Ty Schiff) 0:36; 10, Gavin Mulligan PW (Desmond Brock) 6:14; 11, Keller PW (Franzoni) 12:26.
Shots: PW 24, W 37. Saves: Ben Yuter (PW) 33, Michael Henderson (W) 17.