The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Sports

April 7, 2013

IT'S A WRAP | Miller’s overtime goal ends Tomahawks’ inaugural season

JOHNSTOWN — The result of Sunday’s NAHL Robertson Cup Playoff game wasn’t the one that the Johnstown Tomahawks wanted. Port Huron’s Ian Miller made sure of that just 3:28 into overtime.

But the intensity displayed by the Tomahawks at Cambria County War Memorial Arena on Sunday was everything that Johnstown coach Jason Spence asked from his squad throughout the season.

Needless to say, that made the Fighting Falcons’ 4-3 overtime win in the deciding Game 3 of the North Division Play-in series that much harder to accept.

“Some things happened, sometimes the bounces don’t go your way,” Spence said. “We played a good hockey game. I’m really disappointed in the loss, but out guys played hard and the puck’s gotta bounce the other way for us. We never capitalized on some opportunities, we had some open nets. Both teams played hard and (Port Huron) came up with the win.” 

Miller’s series-clinching goal came early in the overtime period when he collected a loose puck near the Johnstown net and wrapped the puck past Tomahawks goaltender Chris Truehl, sending Johnstown into the offseason while Port Huron advances to face North Division top-seed Sault Ste. Marie in the division semifinals after taking down the Tomahawks 2-1 in the best-of-3 series.

“I was just trying to get a shot on net, maybe it would have kicked out to someone,” Miller said. “But it made a nice bounce.”

While Port Huron advanced into the next round, the battles waged between the Fighting Falcons and Tomahawks left an impression on the victors.

“We knew that it would be a tough series,” Miller said. “(Johnstown) took it to us last game and they were were taking it to us today before we said ‘Let’s work together. We’re not going home yet.’ We were able to get two goals in the third and then the overtime winner.” 

The game-winner by Miller wasn’t the only late-game magic turned in by the Fighting Falcons. There was still the matter of the two-goal lead held by the Tomahawks at the 8:45 mark of the third when Johnstown’s Mitch Kontny slammed home a rebound from Andrew McDonald’s previous shot to put the hosts ahead, 3-1.

Port Huron inched closer at 12:59 of the third when Rick DeRosa, who will play at Penn State next year, redirected a feed from Miller into the net. With an extra attacker on the ice in the waning moments, Brett D’Andrea equalized the game at 3-all; stunning the 2,011 in attendance at the War Memorial.

“Our guys have been really good with understanding what the situation is,” Port Huron coach Michael Gershon said. “We have some good leadership. It really wasn’t anything we (coaches) needed to say. Nothing’s a bad shot.” 

Johnstown, which never trailed until the final goal, grabbed a 1-0 lead at 4:39 of the first as Brandon Reinholz poked in a loose puck with heavy traffic in front of Port Huron goaltender Max Milosek. Mitch Maloney leveled the score just 2:03 into the second when he capitalized on a mishap in the Johnstown crease as a skater inadvertently bowled into Truehl, leaving an open cage for Port Huron.

Cody Gylling regained the advantage for Johnstown by creating a turnover in the Port Huron end before unfurling a backhand shot which beat Milosek at 14:29 of the second. Kontny’s goal in the third built on the momentum gained by the Tomahawks to close the second with the lead.

“What worked was that we were getting shots on goal,” Spence said. “We were taking advantage and using our speed. When we were getting pucks to the net in traffic, it caused confusion for the goaltender and we were able to take advantage of that with rebounds and second and third shots.”

The two late goals from the Fighting Falcons reaffirmed the faith of the team’s coaching staff after 40 minutes.

“I think we just believed,” Gershon said. “Pretty much my speech coming into the third period was that we’re going to win this game. It’s all about believing in the playoffs and just continuing to play the right way.” 

Both Truehl and Milosek stopped 26 shots during the contest.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Sports
  • Pirates cut down by Reds’ Cueto

    April 23, 2014

  • Penguins 0422 Blown leads are troubling trend in series

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Sunnehanna makes changes to tourney week

    April 22, 2014

  • Penguins 0421 Penguins finish hot to grab 2-1 series lead

    Brandon Sutter, Lee Stempniak and Jussi Jokinen scored in a span of 2:13 of the third period to revive the Penguins from yet another two-goal deficit in a 4-3 victory over the Columbus Blue Jackets on Monday night.

    April 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Pirates 0421 Pirates walk off against Reds to halt home skid

    Ike Davis became the first player to hit grand slams for different teams in the same April, and Neil Walker had a winning run single with two outs in the ninth inning as the Pittsburgh Pirates twice overcame deficits to beat the Reds 6-5 Monday night.
    Pittsburgh trailed 2-0 before Davis’ fourth-inning homer off Mike Leake.

    April 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Sitting Bulls bring home national sled hockey title

    The Johnstown Sitting Bulls disabled sled hockey team recently won a national championship.
    The team, comprised of disabled athletes from Cambria, Somerset, Indiana, Bedford and Blair counties, finished first in the Youth B Division at the USA Hockey National Disabled Hockey Festival held April 11-13 in Marlborough, Mass.

    April 21, 2014

  • Local Sports Briefs

    April 21, 2014

  • APTOPIX Boston Marathon.jpg Marathon men’s winner has names of victims on bib

    The winner of the Boston Marathon men’s race had the names of last year’s victims written in marker on the corners of his race bib.

    April 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Pirates Brawl 0420 Brewers top Pirates in game highlighted by dustup

    Ryan Braun homered in the ninth inning to tie it, then Khris Davis hit a home run in the 14th that put Milwaukee ahead for good.
    Yet those were hardly the big blows that attracted all the attention Sunday in the Brewers’ 3-2 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates.

    April 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Football team ends boycott of embattled coach

    Minnesota State University-Mankato’s football team has ended its boycott of reinstated head coach Todd Hoffner, who successfully fought child pornography charges and other misconduct accusations that removed him from the job for 20 months.
    Hoffner said he assured the players, who refused to take the practice field Wednesday, that interim coach Aaron Keen, who led the team in Hoffner’s absence, will continue in a major role with the team.

    April 20, 2014