Wissahickon Captures SHSHL Ice Hockey A Championship

Wissahickon wore down a shorthanded Lower Moreland squad to capture the SHSHL A championship. Photos courtesy of Kathy Leister Photography. Check back for a gallery of photos.

By Ben Reese

HATFIELD -- Nobody expected this.

Nobody thought that the final score of the A Championship game of the Suburban High School Hockey League would be 16-6. It was the most unexpected outcome possible.

But that’s exactly what happened. Wissahickon mercy-ruled an undermanned Lower Moreland for the championship.

"I thought it would be a lower scoring game," Wissahickon coach Ken Harrington said. "I didn't really think it would be a shootout. I thought it would be closer, maybe like 6-4, 6-3.

"The fact that they came back on us in two games, you know they don't quit. They got worn down."

That Lower Moreland did.

The Lions, who have only nine skaters and a goalie on their roster, were without two players who were suspended for one game because of penalties in the previous game.

That made the small bench even smaller. And meant a lot of time on the ice for every player.

"It's obviously a different game when you're missing two of your top skaters," said Lion coach Gus Salfiti. "I didn't expect a blowout like this. They absolutely outskated the heck out of us. They wore us down real quick.

"We tried to keep up with them in the first period but then we got burned out. I thought about calling a timeout in the first seven minutes of the second period (to get some rest). At that point, it was just let's hang in there and hope nobody gets hurt."

The only thing that got hurt was the back of the nets. The 22 goals just might be the most scored in an SHSHL championship game. In the first period alone, nine goals were scored, but the Lions kept it close, trailing by just a 5-4 score after one.

Back-to-back goals by Sean Garry spotted the Trojans a 2-0 lead just over two minutes into the game, but less than a minute later, Vincent DeMaio cut that lead in half when he connected on an unassisted goal. A Nicholas Hussa goal put the Trojans on top 3-1, but Noah Gazzara and Coleman Peppelman scored back-to-back goals to knot the score. Bryan Garry and Hussa answered with consecutive goals for the Trojans, who went on top 5-3, but Peppelman’s goal in the closing seconds of the period trimmed that lead to one.

Wisshickon scored seven goals in the second period, opening up a 12-5 lead. The Trojans added four more in the final stanza.

Bryan Garry topped the score sheet for Wissahickon with six goals. Brother Sean Garry added three, Daniel Glazer and Nicholas Hussa had two each and Nolan Ryan, Samuel Junker and Matt Cade finished off the scoring with one each.

Coleman Peppelman led the Lions with three goals. Vincent DeMaio had two and Noah Gazzara had one.

"This feels like a great reward," said Harrington, whose team has had it share of adversity. "We had one of our D (defensemen) get a broken wrist, we had a couple of unfortunate things happen, one of the games we didn't play with the Garry boys.

"These last two games are the first where we've had all 13 players."

And, in the end, 13 outlasted seven.

Wissahickon 16, Lower Moreland 6
Wissahickon   5          7          4 – 16
Lower Moreland        4          1          1 – 6
First period: 1, Sean Garry W (Daniel Glazer) 0:27; 2, S. Garry W (Bryan Garry, Glazer) 2:22; 3, Vincent DeMaio LM (unassisted) 3:08; 4, Nicholas Hussa W (Ty Schiff) 5:29; 5, Noah Gazzara LM (Arthur Rubinsteyn) 6:53; 6, Coleman Peppelman LM (Tyler Skolnick) 7:46; 7, B. Garry W (Matt Cade) 13:27 PP; 8, Hussa W (Cade, Ben Junker) 13:56; 9, Peppelman LM (Gazzara) 15:45.
Second period: 10, Samuel Junker W (B. Garry) 3:06; 11, Nolan Ryan W (unassisted) 3:42; 12, B. Garry W (S. Garry) 4:52; 13, DeMaio LM (Peppelman) 6:31; 14, B. Garry W (unassisted) 7:03; 15, Glazer W (unassisted) 10:52; 16, B. Garry W (unassisted) 11:10; 17, B. Garry W (S. Garry, Glazer) 13:11.
Third period: 18, Glazer W (S. Garry) 3:06; 19, B. Garry W (S. Garry) 5:47; 20, Peppelman LM (Gazzara) 6:03; 21, S. Garry W (unassisted) 9:50; 22, Cade W (unassisted) 10:51.
Shots: W 53, LM 33. Saves: Michael Henderson (W) 27; Jacob Lungin (LM) 37.