Sports Roundup

Southern Scores Big Against Brick for Third Straight Hockey Victory

By David Biggy | Dec 18, 2019
Photo by: David Biggy Yater Henry and the Southern Regional ice hockey team is off to a 3-0 start after victories over Brick and Howell last week.

Southern Ocean County — This season, the Southern Regional ice hockey team has some home games scheduled for Flyers Skate Zone in Atlantic City. So far, the Rams are 1-for-1 at their new location.

In the first period of a Dec. 13 clash with Brick, Southern jumped out to a 3-1, first-period lead and never looked back, adding four goals in the second period to take a 7-2 lead into the third, en route to an 8-4 victory.

Parker Lech staked the Rams (3-0) to their initial lead about five minutes into the game, scoring on assists from William DiStefano and Christopher Laureigh. Later, on a power play, Laureigh gave the Rams a 2-0 lead when he buried a feed from Andrew Irwin and Zach Minafo with 7:42 left in the period.

After the Green Dragons trimmed the lead to a goal, Laureigh scored again to make it a two-goal game, with assists coming from Lech and Yater Henry with 40 seconds left in the period.

Laureigh scored a hat trick during the second period and Henry added another as the Rams took command. Laureigh’s third goal of the contest arrived just 35 seconds into the second period, assisted by Lech and Jeff Leonard, before he struck again, this time off assists from Leonard and Irwin, on the power play 45 seconds later. Henry delivered his goal, short-handed, with 9:41 on the clock on assists from Laureigh and Minafo. DiStefano and Justin Braun assisted Laureigh’s fifth goal of the game with 1:21 left in the second.

Brick appeared to be making a serious comeback when it scored three consecutive goals bridging the second and third periods, cutting Southern’s lead to 7-4 with 8:41 to go. But Matt Leonard finished off the Green Dragons with a short-handed goal, assisted by Laureigh, with 3:39 left. Sophomore goaltender Trey Mattern ended with 12 saves for his third straight victory in the crease.

On Dec. 11, Southern erased a 3-1, first-period deficit by tallying six goals in the second and finishing off with two more in the third, as the Rams went on to knock off a solid Howell club, 9-4, during which Mattern made 17 saves.

Laureigh again led the way with three goals and three assists, while Andrew Irwin and DiStefano each popped in a pair of goals and gave out an assist, and Minafo scored once and delivered two assists. Braun contributed a goal and an assist, Jeff Leonard gave away three assists, Henry added a pair of assists, and Josh Irwin also had an assist.

The Rams will be playing in the annual Winding River Holiday Tournament starting Monday, Dec. 23, when coach Dan Wasilewski’s second-seeded squad again takes on Brick, the seventh seed, at 2 p.m. The tournament continues on Thursday, Dec. 26, and concludes the next day.

Barnegat Boys Bowl 11th Win

Heading into a Dec. 12 clash with Lacey, the Barnegat boys bowling team was tied with the Lions for second place in the Shore Conference South B division. Once the match was over, the Bengals remained in second place, thanks to a 2-1 victory, while the Lions dropped to third.

In a tight, 870-862 first game, the Bengals were led by Joe Spagnola, who delivered a 223 to go along with Mike Pulig’s 193, Matt Xiques’ 179 and a 155 from Anthony Balas. In the second game, Barnegat cruised to a 954-873 win, as Spagnola tallied a 231, while Matt Charland fired a 201, Balas came through with a 200 and Xiques knocked down 189 pins. Lacey spoiled the sweep with an 893-790 win, despite a 190 from Xiques, 176 from Spagnola and 171 from Balas.

Spagnola finished with a 630 series, while Xiques registered a 558 and Balas delivered a 526.

The Bengals are 11-4 thus far, four losses behind division-leading Manchester, which hammered Pinelands, 3-0. The Wildcats (6-9) were led by Ethan Edwards with a 540 series on the strength of 183 and 234 games. Ryan McGown scored a 452 series after tossing game scores of 149, 170 and 133.

Meanwhile, the Barnegat girls also tried to keep pace with Lacey and take over second place, but the Bengals dropped a 2-1 decision. During Barnegat’s 784-751 win in the second game, Lily Spagnola threw a season-high 255 en route to a 650 series, while Keslea Jecas tossed a 145, and Jasmine Reid and Madison Kubicz each threw a 135.

Spagnola ended with 202 during the third game and a 193 in the first game, while Jecas topped out at 146 in the third, Kubics scored her highest game in the third with a 137, and Reid added scores of 163 and 152 to finish with a 450 series.

The Pinelands girls also lost to Manchester, 3-0. Caitlyn Rodriguez led the way with scores of 155, 177 and 146 for a 478 series, while Kaitlyn Edwards delivered scores of 166, 160 and 133 for a 459 series. Courtney Burns topped out a 136 in the third game.

In Shore Conference South A division action on Dec. 12, the Southern Regional boys squad scored a 3-0 win over Central, registering game victories of 768-705, 901-714 and 860-719. Colin Wilkinson led the Rams’ effort with games of 196, 178 and 172 for a 546 series, while Robert Petrozzino delivered scores of 199 and 187 during the last two games to end up with a 527 series, and Joe Wilkinson topped out at 191 during the second game. Andrew Christensen tossed a 172 in the second game, and Nick Marano contributed a 189 in the third.

The Southern girls couldn’t find a winning rhythm against Central, falling 2-1. The Rams won, 699-640, in the first game when Kyla Bender fired a 159, Kaitlyn Gonsalves added a 155 and Olivia Wilbert threw a 144. Wilbert threw a 140 and 160 during the last two games, and Jordon Rizzo delivered a 172 in the third as well.

David Biggy

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