CCYHA's Anthony Mastromonica and Eastern Mass' Devon Moran battle for a faceoff on Monday. (Photo by Carmo Photography)
WEST CHESTER – CCYHA defeated the Cape Cod Whalers 5-2 this past Saturday during pool play at the Tier I 18U Youth National Championships.
On Tuesday morning, the Capitals will face off against the Whalers once again, this time, for a national championship.
CCYHA scored five unanswered goals en rout to a convincing 7-2 semifinals victory over the Eastern Massachusetts Senators.
Six different players scored for the Capitals, highlighted by a pair of goals from forward Shane Pinto. CCYHA head coach Matthew Plante acknowledged the balanced offensive attack, and knows it’s nothing new for his team.
“That’s how we’ve been all week, even the guys that aren’t putting the puck in the net are making contributions,” Plante said. “They’re doing the little things like blocking a lot of shots, a lot of the intangibles, managing the puck really well.”
“You don’t get to the national championship game without getting contributions throughout the entire lineup,” he added.
For Kyle Haskins, who is a team captain and opened the scoring in the first period, getting to this stage in the tournament is something he’s wanted for a long time.
“It feels pretty good, I think everyone really wanted it, most of us didn’t get it for two years so it’s something we really pushed for,” Haskins said.
Despite two goals in the third period by the Senators, Plante felt his team did well to limit the opposition’s scoring chances throughout the game.
“I thought we did a great job defensively with our structure in the neutral zone, we had a lot of good looks ourselves, we had five (goals) through two periods but we could’ve had a few more,” he said. “We were generating some good chances off of our structure defensively and through the neutral zone while limiting their opportunities as well.”
Also getting in on the goal scoring for the Capitals were Zach Schrock, Jake Roberts, Ryan Sullivan and Nolan Barrett.
With fan buses filled with students being brought to the game tomorrow, Haskins knows it could be an unforgettable moment.
“It’s the first time our school’s ever been here,” he said. “It’s honestly just a pleasure to play and have all our guys here and our school come. It could be something really special.”
Cape Cod Whalers 5, CarShield 2
The Cape Cod Whalers will get a shot at redemption versus CCYHA in the title game of the Tier I 18U Youth National Championships after defeating CarShield 5-2 in the semifinals.
Two third period goals from forward Ian Murphy put the icing on the cake for the Whalers, who also received goals from Jay O'Brien, Cameron Lemanski and Jack Rathbone.
Cape Cod head coach Andrew Orpik thinks his team is coming together at the right time as they head into the national championship.
"It’s a long weekend and games get harder as you go along but we have a pretty tight knit group and I think the guys are really pulling the rope in the same direction and really playing for one another," Orpik said.
In their previous win over Shattuck St. Mary's, CarShield exploded offensively with a nine-goal outing. Against the Whalers, the offense was not there.
"I think our goaltending again was really good, defensively I think we bared down and guys did a good job of making sure they took away opportunities in front of the net," Orpik said.
"What I tell our guys is the more we possess the puck the less they other team has an opportunity," he added. "We did a pretty good job offensively cycling the puck and making their D work.”
Both CarShield goals came courtesy of the man advantage, each by Joe Winkelmann.
Going up against CCYHA for the second time in four days, Orpik expects a 'slugfest.'
"They're a really disciplined team, I think provided we play the right way it’s gonna be a tight game," he said. "We’ve played each other twice and each team has won once so I think its two really good hockey teams.”