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High School Ice Hockey:
Paul VI And Rancocas Are Fit To Be Tied

Monday, January 19, 2004

By Mike Costantino
SJSports Staff Writer

In one of the more entertaining games of the season, Rancocas Valley and Paul VI skated to a 5-5 tie in Tier 1 action played in Voorhees on Monday night. With the season winding down and the tournament just around the corner, both teams skated well and could meet again down the road. Peter Antinore tallied twice and Bret Balco added a goal and two assists to lead the Paul VI attack. Rancocas had a balanced attack as five different players scored. Balco opened the scoring on the power play, the first of three goals scored with the man advantage by Paul VI, as he ripped home a shot from the slot on a feed from Mike DiGennaro. Rancocas, which never led in the game, tied the game at 1-1 as Justin Nusspickel scored from the right circle after Eric Lake had made two good saves from in close.

Lake, with advice from his dad, forgot about Friday’s game against Clearview where he looked ordinary, was strong in goal tonight and should Paul VI want to improve on last years play in the tournament they should bottle tonight’s effort. Zach Booth gave Paul VI a 2-1 lead with thirty-four seconds left in the period putting home a rebound of a shot by Antinore. Rancocas came right back as Sean Mellon put home his own rebound along the right side of the net to tie the game at 2-2. After Antinore put Paul VI up 3-2, Jesse Deczynski answered for Rancocas after Lake stopped Matt Sansoni in close. The puck just lay in the crease and Deczynski jammed it home. DiGennaro scored on the power play with less than two minutes left in the period as Balco made a nice play along the boards to keep the puck in the zone and found DiGennaro down low and he lifted his shot just under the crossbar and once again Paul VI led 4-3.

After Sansoni tied the game early in the third period on a turnover, Antinore put Paul VI ahead 5-4. After winning the face-off in the offensive zone, he skated right in front and scored on his own rebound. Jeff Sporer tied the game at 5-5 midway through the period as he broke down the left side and his quick shot found the net. Rancocas had a chance to take the lead with a two-man-advantage for thirty seconds late in the game but Lake made several key saves to preserve the tie.

Notes: Offensively this was the best Paul VI has looked, for a full game in a while. Rancocas has utilized a two-goalie rotation, but for the game Kevin Kraft started in nets and fellow net minder, Chelsea Ward played defense, and played well.

Photos by Art Redd

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