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District 1 boys’ playbacks: Upper Dublin, Penncrest to meet for final state berth

Wednesday, 21st May 2014

Categories Boy's/Men's, High School, Posted 5/21/14
From Staff Report and contribution from

Ryan Siwinski scored the game winner with 4:14 remaining to give visiting Upper Dublin a thrilling 10-9 victory Tuesday over Garnet Valley in a District 1 playback.

Penncrest's Robert Logan had the OT game-winner and scored four goals

Penncrest’s Robert Logan had the OT game-winner and scored four goals (Photo by Lane Shima)

The win advanced the Cards into Thursday’s fifth-place game (for the final District state berth) vs. Penncrest at Harriton High (4 p.m.). Penncrest downed Central Bucks East, 13-12, in overtime.

Upper Dublin led, 8-3, and then allowed six straight goals before rallying for the dramatic win.

“I was really proud of our kids,” said UD coach J.P. Banks. “Bishop Shanahan is an excellent team, and we really didn’t play very well on Saturday (in a 14-5 loss).

“Coming into today, we hoped the boys would bounce back, but you’re never really sure, but they did. They came out with confidence, and they played a lot smarter. It was really nice to see our guys step up.”

The two teams spent the first half exchanging goals with Upper Dublin leading 2-1 at the end of one quarter only to watch the Jaguars knot the score 3-3 at halftime. The Cards appeared to be in command when they opened the second half with a 5-0 run, but the Jaguars reeled off six straight goals of their own – one to close out the third quarter and five to open the fourth.

“Down 9-8 with about six minutes left – the boys have been given every opportunity to quit, and they don’t,” Banks said. “They fight back, and they believe in what we’re doing.”

Nicholas Vernacchio scored the equalizer with 4:40 remaining. Twenty-six seconds later Siwinski connected on the game winner. The Cards’ defense held the rest of the way.

Michael Sowers had two goals and five assists and Evan Scott tallied three goals. Siwinski had two goals and an assist and Vernaccio scored twice. Bobby McPeak made six saves.

Brandon Dowd scored three goals, and Jacob Buttermore and Kyle Roberts each had two goals and one assist for the Jags.

What changed in the second half?

“It’s really feeling teams out and finding out what’s working for us,” Banks said. “Michael Sowers saw what he sees all the time – a long pole locking him off. Our other kids did a really good job of either getting him the ball or playing five-on-five. Our offensive coaches – coach (Ryan) White and coach (Haldy) Gifford – did a great job of getting the boys in positions to succeed.”

Banks credited the strong play of sophomore defensemnan Jack Rapine (nine groundballs, one assist).

“Jack really controlled the middle of the field,” said Banks. “They have a phenomenal face-off kid (Daniel Lanham), and we actually used Jack at the face-off for just about the entire night to neutralize him and to give us an advantage on possessions.

“He did a great job. The kid would win the face-off, and Jack was going after him to take it away. It gave us some extra possessions; it gave us some extra opportunities.”

Penncrest 13, Central Bucks East 12, OT

Robert Logan (four goals, one assist) tallied the overtime game-winner with 2:54 left following a key save by Dylan McCleaft to lift the Lions into the fifth-place game vs. Upper Dublin.

The game went back and forth all night and Penncrest was leading, 10-9, when Matt Vetter (three goals, one assist) tied it and then put the Pats ahead, 11-10, with 2:28 to play

That lead did not last long as Penncrest scored just 28 seconds later. Then with just 38 seconds left, Matt Schmidt (three goals) scored on a feed from Ryan Brown putting the Patriots up 12-11.

CB East lost the critical face-off, and Penncrest tied the score at 12 with just 23 seconds left in regulation, sending the game into sudden victory overtime.

Dylan Protesto (16 of 28 face-offs) won the face-off and tied it with 2:25 to play.

East won the OT face-off and Matt Brown got off a shot, McCleaft made the save. The Lions cleared the ball and called their only timeout in the OT to work on a play.

Out of the TO, East defended the play well, causing the Lions to re-set the play. On a screen, Logan got his hands free and fired off a 20-foot right handed rocket that found the back of the net to end the contest.

Will Manganiello added three goals and two assists for Penncrest and Ethan Trusty scored twice.

Matt Milici had four goals and an assist for East and Sean McGovern posted 13 saves.

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