The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Tomahawks

January 20, 2013

McCombs provides much-needed offense for Tomahawks

JOHNSTOWN — The Tomahawks had seen their share of pucks hit the post or bounce in the wrong direction by an inch or two this weekend.

Johnstown also had to contend with the mostly stellar play of Michigan goaltender Trevor Gorsuch for two nights.

So, when the ’Hawks finally broke through with a three-goal third period, a collective sigh of relief probably was felt on the home bench and throughout a crowd of 3,304 fans at Cambria County War Memorial Arena.

“It’s a big relief,” said Tomahawks forward Jaycob McCombs, who scored his team’s final two goals, including the game-winner in a 3-2 victory over the Warriors. “We’ve got a really hard-working, blue-collar team. We were close (in Friday’s 3-1 loss) but we hit a couple posts and couldn’t find the back of the net. Coach keeps telling us to keep working hard and they’re going to start to fall.”

Michigan led 1-0 after Connor Lyons scored high on goalie Chris Truehl’s glove side 2:40 into the second period.

Truehl later stopped a penalty shot by Michigan’s Zack Szajner at 13:25 of the second to give the Tomahawks a lift.

“Huge,” Tomahawks coach Jason Spence said. “A huge, huge stop.”

Truehl challenged Szajner and countered the Warriors player’s move before going down on the ice in a backward motion to squeeze the puck before it went through his five-hole.

“You’ve got to come out and challenge him and not just back up and hope you can read it right,” Truehl said. “That one, I was able to read it. It didn’t go in. I’ll take it.

“He went wide of me, so I thought I’d extend. He went back to my five-hole, so I had to turn and cover it so it couldn’t go in the net.”

The large crowd on Johnstown Hockey Heritage Night appreciated the effort. So did Truehl’s teammates.

“That was a big turning point, absolutely the turning point,” McCombs said.

In the final period, Johnstown’s Cody Gylling positioned himself just outside the crease and beat Gorsuch at 4:40 to tie the game with the power-play goal.

McCombs made it 2-1 just over two minutes later. But Michigan, which had won four straight over the Tomahawks and five times overall, wouldn’t go away. AJ Marcinek converted a power play to make it 2-all at 12:55.

McCombs netted the eventual game-winner at 15:03.

“(Tomahawks defenseman) Ian Spencer was coming down the right wing and he took a shot a little wide,” McCombs said. “It hit the end boards and popped out to the left side of the net. I took a quick glance at the goalie and saw he wasn’t really set yet.

“I tried to throw it in there and get it somewhere to the five-hole. I think it hit his left skate and trickled in between his legs.”

The win capped a night that began with Johnstown Jets legend Don Hall – wearing a blue Jets No. 9 jersey – dropping the ceremonial first puck. Tomahawk players Cody Boyd and Corey Schafer took the faceoff.

Boyd is a Richland product, and Schafer played at Westmont Hilltop.

Area high school and youth hockey players filled the ice for the pregame event, and a Johnstown hockey history display was situated in the large room behind Section 9.

“It feels great,” Spence said. “It was a big letdown (on Friday). It is a big relief. The big thing is we get to take this big period into this week. There were some guys who were obviously frustrated after Friday night (when the Tomahawks lost to Michigan despite taking 48 shots on goal).

“They all knew they had worked real hard and didn’t get rewarded. Tonight. we got that reward. It didn’t come until late and we had a lot of frustration.”

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Tomahawks
  • horizontal hawks Fighting Falcons win playoff series against Tomahawks

    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.

    April 12, 2014 2 Photos

  • ’Hawks need a win to survive

    At the moment, it’s not about advancing through the postseason for the Johnstown Tomahawks. It’s simply a case of surviving to play another day.

    April 11, 2014

  • Falcons clip Tomahawks in overtime

    The Johnstown Tomahawks squandered a pair of two-goal leads and fell 4-3 in overtime to Port Huron in Game 2 of the North Division semifinals on Friday night.
    Johnstown trails the best-of-5 series 2-0 and will try to avoid elimination when the series moves to Cambria County War Memorial Arena on Friday.

    April 5, 2014

  • Tomahawks drop Game 1 on road

    The Johnstown Tomahawks came back from an early two-goal deficit, but Jon Hall scored a third period goal to give the Port Huron Fighting Falcons the 3-2 win in Game 1 of the best-of-5 North Division semi-finals on Thursday night at McMorran Arena.
    The Fighting Falcons struck first, as Bryce VanHorn scored 1:39 into the first period. Logan Lambdin earned an assist on the goal.

    April 4, 2014

  • tomahawks okicki Tomahawks set to open postseason on road

    The Johnstown Tomahawks open the Robertson Cup playoffs tonight at Port Huron hoping to reclaim the form that enabled the second-year team to move near the top of the NAHL North Division a mere six weeks ago.
    Standing in the way of fourth-seeded Johnstown is No. 1 Port Huron, a team that planted itself firmly atop the division and never relented.

    April 3, 2014 1 Photo

  • 'Hawks drop season finale at Janesville

    The Johnstown Tomahawks closed the NAHL regular season with a 4-1 loss to the Janesville Jets in front of 650 fans at Janesville Ice Arena on Saturday night.
    The Tomahawks had secured the North Division’s fourth and final playoff spot when Springfield lost at Soo on Friday night, so the game had no bearing on the playoff race.

    March 30, 2014

  • Tomahawks clinch berth in playoffs

    The Johnstown Tomahawks lost a 5-3 decision at Janesville on Friday, but clinched a NAHL playoff berth nonetheless because Soo defeated Springfield 2-1 earlier in the day.
    The Tomahawks began the weekend in fourth place, three points behind Janesville and three points ahead of fifth-place Springfield.

    March 29, 2014

  • Tomahawks’ playoff hopes hinge on next two games

    March 27, 2014

  • Eagles avoid sweep, nip Tomahawks

    The Johnstown Tomahawks battled back from a three-goal deficit in Sunday afternoon’s final regular-season home game against Soo, but a late third-period score by the Eagles sent the Tomahawks to a disappointing 4-3 loss.
    Soo (24-27-7) erupted for three unanswered goals in a six-minute span to open the second period before the Tomahawks (28-25-5) pulled within one heading into the third and subsequently tied it at 5:53 of the final period on a blast from inside the right circle by Matt Meier.

    March 23, 2014

  • Tomahawks deal Eagles dramatic loss in shootout

    The Johnstown Tomahawks are honoring their fans throughout the final home weekend of the NAHL season.
    On Saturday night, the Tomahawks made sure those among a crowd of 2,951 remained seated until the final siren of each period and throughout overtime and a shootout.

    March 23, 2014

Poll

Do you think that Jack Williams will get the 270 signatures from city residents needed in order to have a referendum placed on a municipal ballot to have the city's pressure test mandate repealed?

Yes
No
I'm not sure
     View Results
Order Photos


Photo Slideshow

House Ads