|High School Ice Hockey:
Township Versus Clearview In The Finals - A look Ahead
Sunday, February 25, 2001
By Mike Costantino
SJSports Staff Writer
Washington Township will look to knock off defending league champion and fierce rival Clearview in the finals of the SJHSIHL starting on Friday night at Hollydell in a best of three series. Having finished the season undefeated in league play, Township looks to avenge last year's bitter memory as Clearview defeated them in the championship after spotting Township the first game. And this series should be as physical and exciting as last year, so lets break down this match-up:
- Team speed - Arguably the two fastest teams in the league, both have great frontline skaters, its Township depth that gives them a slight edge. Advantage Township.
- Goaltending - Township employs the two-headed goalie system with Buckalew and Seczech, Clearview has Wiesenbach who was key in their win last year. Advantage Clearview.
- Defense - Township has the leagues best Defenseman in Anderson and Clearview has the next best defenseman in Gooch, earlier in the season this was Clearviews biggest weakness but with Coble moving to the back line they have solidified that position. Slight edge to Township.
- Coaching - Coach Sullivan won it all last year and is more demonstrative and vocal. Coach Brown in his first year has a quiet but stern approach. Both styles work. Call it even.
- Intangibles - Township has been the odds on favorite all year, and went undefeated during the regular season. However in the playoffs it's been a struggle even though they continue to win. Clearview is the defending champ and would like nothing better than to hand Township its first two losses and seems to be playing its best hockey at the right time. Call it even.
- Prediction - Can Clearview play disciplined hockey, generate at least twenty five shots per game, continue scoring on the power play, don't surrender any short-handed goals and get strong goaltending? Should all of this happen positively for Clearview they still might not win, but their chances improve greatly. Can Township stay away from the retaliation penalty, limit the amount of scoring chances and get good goaltending ? With their great speed they can cover a lot of mistakes but need to limit the amount of odd-man rushes. Close games favor Clearview, but Township has been able to jump out to early big leads. Township in three.