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High School Ice Hockey:
Casolaro Saves the Day for Cherokee

Wednesday, March 2, 2005

By Mike Costantino
SJSports Staff Writer

Bobby Casolaro stopped 34 shots as Cherokee defeated Rancocas Valley 3-2 in playoff action at the Skate Zone in Voorhees. Cherokee will now meet Moorestown, with the winner advancing to play Washington Township in the championship round. Rancocas Valley took its only lead at 1-0 one minute into the game as Patrick Hennessey was set-up by Aaron and Ryan Smith. Patrick McMahon with a nifty move down low tied the game at 1-1 for Cherokee about four minutes later. With both teams playing stay at home defense, the period ended at 1-1 and the shots were even at nine.

Dan Altieri put Cherokee ahead 2-1, scoring a goal on the short side on a nice feed from Zach Sawyer who was positioned behind the net. Casolaro made great saves on both Smith brothers and also stoned Rob Brown to keep Rancocas Valley off the board. Cherokee increased the lead to 3-1 as McMahon set up Lou Sarcone with about five minutes left in the period. Rancocas Valley out-shot Cherokee 14-11 but could not solve Casolaro. With a chance to cut the lead early in the third period, Rancocas was on the power play, but Casolaro made two great saves, once more robbing Aaron Smith. Matthew Sansoni brought Rancocas to within 3-2 with two minutes left in the game, but could not get the equalizer.

Photos by Art Redd

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