The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Local Sports

April 12, 2014

Fighting Falcons win playoff series against Tomahawks

JOHNSTOWN — The third period of Game 3 of the NAHL North Division semifinal served as a quick primer of the Johnstown Tomahawks’ playoff fortunes against top-seeded Port Huron.

Trailing by two goals going into the third, the Tomahawks ramped up the intensity, producing a goal early and a multitude of chances at an equalizer until the game’s final moments when goaltender Max Milosek stopped Jordan Watt’s breakaway try as the Cambria County War Memorial Arena’s horn sounded.

The Fighting Falcons bested the Tomahawks 4-3, ending Johnstown’s season with a three-game postseason sweep in the best-of-5 series.

“I’m really proud of them,” Tomahawks coach Jason Spence said. “The community, the character that they bring. They’re the reason why hockey works in Johnstown. You recruit good men, I’m proud of that. We fell short, but we didn’t stop fighting. It’s tough to lose three one-goal games, but we had chances and opportunities and they get passed by ... It’s hard to think about right now, but I already can’t wait until next season.” 

It didn’t take long for Port Huron to match its 2-0 lead in the series on the scoreboard, using goals from Jon Hall (at 6:06) and Latrobe product Noah Batis (8:00). Hall’s goal came as he received a feed in the slot from Austin Romzek before sending a puck past Johnstown starting goaltender Brett Young.

Batis’ tally – a shot from the right faceoff circle – occurred with help from Bryan Yim.

Johnstown connected on its first goal at 10:53 as Brandon Reinholz took advantage of a scrum in front of Milosek during a Tomahawks power-play opportunity, deflecting a puck into the cage. Jordan Watt and Mitch Hall assisted on the goal that kept the furious scoring pace of the first period on track.

At 15:13, Alex Archibald – with assists from Yim and Niko Coffman – ran the Fighting Falcons’ lead back to two goals when he slammed a shot past Young. Just over a minute later, Johnstown replied with Matt Meier finding the net with helpers credited to Shane Bednard and Hall.

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