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High School Ice Hockey:
Clearview Ousts Eastern, Eyes First Crown

Monday, February 21, 2000

By Mike Costantino
SJSports Staff Writer

Clearview defeated Eastern 6-3 to sweep their semi-final series and will try and win their first SJHSIHL championship against Washington Township. The game plan for Clearview remained the same, smother Becker and Cianfrani as soon as they touched the puck and capitalize on their chances. Well, their best chance came on the power play with just over two minutes left in the first period. Patrick Sullivan was set up perfectly by John Meenan and Mike Gooch, and Clearview took a 1-0 lead into the second period.

Sullivan scored his second of the game at the nine-minute mark, again from Meenan and Rob Coble. That was the only goal of the period, and Eastern was down 2-0 heading into the third period. Four minutes into the third period, Adam Roy on a great pass from Joe Jurkofsky cut the lead to 2-1 and brought the crowd back into the game. Just two minutes later with Clearview on the power play, Gunnar Fox tallied to restore the two-goal lead at 3-1. When Coach Pontonio looks back at these two losses, giving up five power play goals and two short-handed along with averaging about fifteen shots less a game than during the regular season will definitely stand out.

Eastern, to its credit, kept the heat on and with a two-man advantage Lucas Urso made it 3-2 with about six minutes remaining. But about a minute later, Ryan Arnold scored a strange goal that seemed to deflect off the boards and hit Eastern goalie Mike Keppler in the back and Clearview had its two goal lead at 4-2. That seemed to take the wind out of the Eastern sails. Hiddeman and Dave Gooch scored late for Clearview and Urso added his second with twenty seconds left to make the final 6-3.

Photos by Boog Williams

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