Second-period surge helps Williamsville East past Grand Island
Forward Tyler Trubish got things started for the Flames, scoring a power-play goal, 27 seconds into the second period. Less than a minute later, forward Zach Dorobiala beat Vikings goaltender Greg Nicolia – who made 31 saves, including 17 in the second period – to give the Flames a 2-0 lead; Matt Aichinger and John Bielinski were each credited with an assist. At the 8:12 mark, defenseman Jacob Shine made it 3-0, scoring on a feed from Trubish.
“We had some momentum going with that second period,” said Flames head coach Mike Torrillo. “They came back and got one on us [in the second period], on the power play, and then definitely fought hard until the end.”
The Vikings’ power-play goal that Torrillo mentioned occurred at the 10:45 mark of the second period, at which point forward Jake Zimmerman ripped a slap shot from the point and past Flames goaltender Adam Dentico. Forwards Mark McKenna and Tommy Corrao each picked up a point on the play.
Vikings forward Joe Fanara chipped in a rebound, making it 3-2 with more than seven minutes remaining in the third period. However, Fanara’s goal was the lone third-period blemish on Dentico, who kicked aside 32 shots on the night – including 16 in the final session.
“That’s the way the season went. We had a team that never quit,” said Vikings co-head coach Bob Simpson. “The performance we had tonight kind of symbolized that. We were down 3-0 to a team like that, with a goalie like that…I’d probably hang my head and say: ‘All right. It was a good season.’ But our guys came back. Our fourth line scored that second goal, so that just shows you the type of character we have on Grand Island.”
Forward Austin Bianchi, who assisted the first Flames goal, scored an empty-netter with less than a minute remaining.
The Flames advance to the semifinals – against an opponent to be determined – Tuesday evening at the Northtowns Center at Amherst.
Freelance sportswriter Charles Roberts covers the WNY Varsity Hockey Federation for MetroWNY.com. Reach him at ChRobert3@aol.com or on Twitter: @cHartleyRoberts.