Friday, February 20, 2004
By Mike Costantino
Timber Creek scored three goals in a span of nineteen seconds to erase a 4-3 deficit and key a 7-4 victory over a very tough Cherokee II. Proving that their undefeated season in Tier 2 was no fluke, Cherokee II gave Timber Creek all it could handle and led for most of the game. Each team traded goals in the games opening moments, Lanny Frederick for Timber Creek and Doug Ferguson for Cherokee II. Phillip Rivello put Timber Creek up 2-1 as he picked up a loose puck in the slot and ripped a shot into the net but Zach Sawyer tied the game at 2-2 scoring on the power play.
Cherokee II again took advantage of the man advantage as Greg Cristofor connected on the power play and led 3-2 early in the second period. However, it would be their inability to capitalize on an excellent opportunity that would change the game. The turning point came midway through the second period when Cherokee II led 3-2 and had a two-man advantage for fifty-eight seconds. With a chance to take control of the game, a score here to go up by two goals would have been tough for Timber Creek to come back. However, strong defensive support from Ray Zola and Matt Carpenter kept Cherokee II off the board. Moments later Timber Creek had a two-man advantage and were able to cash in as Dan Cavallaro scored with about five minutes remaining in the second period. Andrew Katz scored a late goal in the period and Cherokee II led 4-3 heading into the final period.
Zola tied the score at 4-4 as he intercepted a clearing pass and ripped a shot from just inside the blue line with just under ten minutes left in the game. That goal seemed to lift a heavy weight off the Timber Creek bench and when Tom Hopkins jammed home a rebound along the side of the crease, the bench erupted as Timber Creek now led 5-4. Right off the face-off Matt Carpenter broke in and scored to make it 6-4. Then Hopkins again on a break, finished the barrage of goals as his breakaway put the game out of reach at 7-4. Timber Creek will move into the next round and play Cherry Hill East on Monday.
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