William Tennent notched an important win over CR South in SHSHL action Thursday. Check out the recaps. Archbishop Wood/Abington & Lower Moreland/Upper Moreland photos provided courtesy of Keith Clemens Photography. Truman/CR North photo provided by Darryl Rule of J&D Photography. Check back for a gallery of all three games...CLICK HERE.
By Ben Reese
WARWICK -- Eric Lineman is a legacy.
If you've watched "Animal House" lately, you know what a legacy is, at least in that sense.
In Lineman's case, it's a good thing, especially for the William Tennent ice hockey team. Lineman backstopped the Panthers to a 3-0 win over Council Rock South in a Suburban High School Hockey League game at Warwick.
He is the second member of his family to play goalie for the Panthers. His older brother, C.J., manned the nets for Tennent for three years and now is playing at Rider.
Eric is aware of the shoes he has to fill.
"(I'm) following his footsteps," he said of his brother. "He started out as a goalie and I watched him play and I just wanted to follow his footsteps."
Of course, Panther coach Nick D'Aurizio also knows what he had and what he has now.
"C.J. was a great goaltender," D'Aurizio said. "He's a great older brother so he mentored his brother on how to be a goalie in this league.
"Eric was able to sit on the bench for a year when C.J. was a senior and really learn from him."
The legacy and the help he had from his brother is fine, but what about Thursday night? How could Eric blank one of the highest scoring teams in the league?
"I was just in the zone tonight," the Panthers’ goalie said. "It was just one of those nights. I just ignored the penalties and just stayed in my game."
D'Aurizio has seen this coming.
"Eric has been playing at an elite level for the past seven, eight weeks," the Tennent coach said. "Since we had our turnaround in late 2016, it's been the quietest dominant goaltending performance I've ever seen.
"Night in and night out, if you looked at our goals-against over the last six, seven games, it's been like one or two goals. He's just playing at an elite level. It's really nice to have someone like that behind us."
While Lineman stood on his head to blank the Golden Hawks, there was also the elephant in the room.
At the end of the second period, after time had run out, a fight broke out on the ice. All told, five Tennent players and three Rock South players were assessed game misconduct penalties and banished from the ice, causing both teams to play with very short benches.
"It's tough," said D'Aurizio of the short bench. "It's hard with the sheer numbers.
"It's difficult, but at that point, every single guy on that bench was so fired up. Everybody was ready to go. There was no such thing as being tired."
Rock South coach Joe Houk agreed.
"It's hard, super hard," he said. "It wasn't a good game from the start.
"I think we controlled the first ten minutes until they scored the goal. Once they scored that goal on the power play, it was downhill. Of course, you don't win games in the (penalty) box."
Right. Games are won on the ice and Tennent got the goals to win it.
In the first period, John Dern gave the Panthers the lead they would never lose, scoring on the power play with an assist from Liam Ovington.
Tennent got two more goals in the second period, both on the power play. Eric George got the first one off assists from Stephen Skiba and Dern, and Chris Kreider notched the second with assists going to Sean Ovington and Bobby Markus.
Meanwhile Lineman was taking care of business. He kicked out all 32 shots on goal from the Hawks.
Houk had some praise for the Panthers.
"They're a good team because they all stick together," he said. "I have a group here, a group here and a group here.
"We're not a very good come-from-behind team. We've got to be in the lead in order to stay in the lead."
Overall, D'Aurzio was happy with the outcome.
"When we play good teams, we put up a fight, win or lose," he said. "That's two games where we've knocked off Council Rock South and that's something we haven't done in 15 years.
"They're a perennial powerhouse and any time we can knock them off it's big. It shows we've got something special here."
Especially in goal.
William Tennent 3, Council Rock South 0
William Tennent 1 2 0 – 3
Council Rock South 0 0 0 – 0
First period: 1, John Dern WT (Liam Ovington) 12:23 PP.
Second period: 2, Eric George WT (Stephen Skiba, Dern) 6:22 PP; 3, Chris Kreider WT (Sean Ovington, Bobby Markus) 14:08 PP.
Shots: CRS 32, WT 23. Saves: Jeremy Siegel (CRS) 20, Eric Lineman (WT) 32.
NESHAMINY 5, PENNSBURY 3
Nicholas Ruggero’s three-point night led the Redskins in Thursday’s battle between the neighboring rivals.
The Redskins opened up a 3-1 lead in the opening period and maintained that two-goal lead the rest of the way. Ruggero scored an unassisted goal one minute into the game, and five minutes later, Ruggero set up teammate Joseph Buday to give the ‘Skins an early 2-0 lead. A goal by Pennsbury’s Dawson Belmont with a John Bezilla assist cut that lead in half, but Anthony Sabatini scored a late goal to put the Redskins on top 3-1.
Ruggero (Brett Nelson assist) scored the only goal of the second period to send the Redskins into the final period with a 4-1 advantage. Aric Miller’s goal 6:46 into the fourth period gave the Redskins a 5-1 lead before the Falcons scored a pair of late goals by Sujit Hiremath (Jake Sieger/Griffin Foll assists) and Nathan Raccagno (Hiremath assist).
Neshaminy goalie Steven Glik turned away 26 of 29 shots he faced to earn the win while Pennsbury’s Brandon McCaffrey was credited with 20 saves.
Neshaminy 3-1-1 5
Pennsbury 1-0-2 3
Shots: Neshaminy 25, Pennsbury 29.
Saves: Steven Glik (N) 26, Brandon McCaffrey (P) 20.
N: Nicholas Ruggero
N: Joseph Buday (Nicholas Ruggero)
P: Dawson Belmont (John Bezilla)
N: Anthony Sabatini
N: Nicholas Ruggero (Brett Nelson)
N: Aric Miller
P: Sujit Hiremath (Jake Sieger/Griffin Foll)
P: Nathan Raccagno (Sujit Hiremath)
Wednesday, Feb. 15
ARCHBISHOP WOOD 8, ABINGTON 3
Timothy Cordero led a balanced Wood attack with two goals and two assists for four points. The Vikings took a 3-1 lead after one period and still led by two goals heading into the final period when they exploded for four goals.
Tomas Hill (Cordero/Joseph Hill assists) put the Vikings on the scoreboard less than a minute into the contest. Cordero followed with a goal, using an assist from RJ Panella. Tim Burke found the net to make it a 2-1 game, but Declan Cole’s power play goal sent the Vikings into the second period with a 3-1 lead.
Tomas Hill (Brendan Cullura assist) and Burke (Andrew Profit/Luke DeCristofano) exchanged second period goals. Evan Capinas, Cole and Cordero reeled off consecutive goals to open the fourth period before Abington’s Ryan Gosselin found the net. Joseph Hilll’s goal closed out the scoring.
David Casper recorded 17 saves in goal for the win. Abington’s Jacob Snellenburg kept his team close with a 43-save effort.
Archbishop Wood 3-1-4 8
Abington 1-1-1 3
Shots: Wood 51, Abington 20.
Saves: David Casper (AW) 17, Jacob Snellenburg (A) 43).
AW: Tomas Hill (Timothy Cordero/Joseph Hill)
AW: Timothy Cordero (RJ Panella)
A: Tim Burke
AW: Declan Cole (Timothy Cordero/Evan Capinas)
AW: Tomas Hill (Brendan Cullura)
A: Tim Burke (Andrew Profit/Luke DeCrisofano)
AW: Evan Capinas (Declan Cole)
AW: Declan Cole (Brendan Cullura/Evan Capinas)
AW: Timothy Cordero
A: Ryan Gosselin
AW: Joseph Hill (Brendan Cullura)
COUNCIL ROCK SOUTH 3, NESHAMINY 0
The Golden Hawks took a tenuous 1-0 lead into the final period when they tacked on a pair of insurance goals. Golden Hawk goalie Mason Procz turned away all 24 shots he face in the shutout win.
Nicholas Meli – who had a hand in all three goals – put the Hawks on the scoreboard 59 seconds into the opening period, using a Michael Kauffman assist.
In the third period, Jake Houk’s goal with assists from Meli and Kauffman gave the Hawks some breathing room, and Meli put the finishing touches on a big night with his second goal of the game midway through the period.
Neshaminy goalie Steven Glik turned away 29 of 32 shots he faced.
Council Rock South 1-0-2 3
Neshaminy 0-0-0 0
Shots: CRS 32, Neshaminy 24.
Saves: Mason Procz (CRS) 24, Steven Glik (N) 29.
CRS: Nicholas Meli (Michael Kauffman)
CRS: Jake Houk (Nicholas Meli/Michael Kauffman)
CRS: Nicholas Meli