Published in The Geauga County Maple Leaf
February 25, 2017
Kenston piled up two more impressive wins over the weekend as the program continues to move through the OHSAA tournament.
The Bombers shook off a disappointing performance against Western Reserve Academy in the first round of the Baron Cup to win the team’s first two tournament games against Notre Dame Cathedral Latin and Gilmour Academy.
Kenston beat NDCL 4-1 and Gilmour 5-2.
NDCL came into the game last week on a high note having won the Baron Cup III against the Bay Rockets in the championship the week before. The Lions won the Blue North Division title.
“Coach Bilyk did a great job of lighting a fire under us before the third,” said NDCL captain Joe Iademarco after the Baron Cup win. Iademarco made his mark with two goals, giving credit to teammates Grey Wilson and Jaret Cipollone for the assists. Junior CJ Natale and sophomore, Will Ferrell, also scored.
But it was Kenston’s night one week later.
Kenston’s Ryan Herpy got the Bombers off to a good start by going end-to-end, scoring an unassisted goal with 13:29 left in the first period.
Kenston’s Von Houk (hooking) and Bennett Wenger (slashing) got called for penalties in the period.
Cole Lombardi, trying to make things happen, broke into the NDCL zone and proceeded to put the puck into the NDCL bench, sending several of the players scampering for cover.
Herpy scored again on a wrist shot that beat Bob Zoul, NDCL’s goaltender, on the stick side with 4:26 left in the period giving the Bombers a two goal lead it would not relinquish. Kent Mack, Kenston’s goalie, makes a great glove save on only the second shot fired his way with a minute left in the period.
NDCL’s Iademarco scooped up the puck and scored an unassisted shorthanded goal with 7:05 left in the period, cutting Kenston’s lead in half.
Bailey Mulhern was called for his second penalty (elbowing) of the period with 5:25 left the second period.
Zoul made a great save on a Herpy break-away to start the third period. Herpy got called for a cross checking penalty during a scuffle in front of the net.
NDCL did an admirable job of squelching the Bombers ability to clear the puck out of its own zone throughout the period.
Will Mulhern gave up his body and made a terrific block on a would be shot on goal that inspired his teammates. John Barto gave a lamplighter by beating the NDCL goaltender on the stick side with 6:12 left in the third period.
Jack Zalinsky is credited with an assist on Barto’s goal. The Kenston team continued to make things tough on itself as Von Houk took a silly tripping penalty with 5:34 left in the third period.
Kenston’s Bailey Mulhern earned his third penalty of the game with 4:30 left in the game to give NDCL a two-man advantage and a chance to get a much-needed goal.
But the Bombers successfully killed a series of NDCL power plays and Barto collected his second goal of the period by scoring an empty-netter with 90 seconds to play.
Kenston coaches Eric Horschler and Joe Kummerl were disappointed in the night, saying their team had “played down to our competition.”
The Bombers outshot the Lions 29-21 in the game.
“These young men are high schoolers who need to learn how to play consistent hockey,” the coaches said. “And continue to do the little things game in and game out to be successful.”
The Bombers worked on things at Saturday’s practice before knocking off Gilmour Academy 5-2 at the Kent State University Ice Arena, despite falling behind 1-0 on the ice.
Jonathan Wiegand scored Kenston’s first goal with an assist from Ryan Herpy. The Bombers then peppered Gilmour’s goaltender with 14 straight shots. Gilmour then retook the lead 2-1 before being out-played the final two periods.
Herpy rifled a wrist shot past the Gilmour goaltender with 9:17 remaining in the second period to tie the score. Louie Sugarman received the lone assist on the goal. Von Houk got the game winning goal with 7:52 remaining in the game with Ashton Taylor earning an assist. Gilmour outshot Kenston 13 to 10, but the Bombers outscored Gilmour three to two.
The Bombers will now play a very talented Shaker Heights team Saturday. The Raiders, a fellow Red North opponent, beat Kenston twice in the regular season, 3-0 and 3-2.