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SLC denies all-out OFA hockey effort

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BRASHER FALLS -On Wednesday, at noon, OFA Hockey Coach Jon Frederick left the Canton-Potsdam Hospital with half a thumb after surgery in the aftermath of a garage door accident.

On Wednesday night he left the Tri-Town Civic Center with his pain eased somewhat by the fact that his third-seeded team had rendered such a complete effort in a 3-2 overtime loss to second-seeded St. Lawrence Central in the Section 10 Division II semi-finals.

The Larries advanced into Sunday’s Division II championship game against top-seeded Norwood-Norfolk at the Clarkson Cheel Center at 1 p.m.

N-N downed Malone 4-1 on Wednesday night.

“We played one heck of a hockey game and we couldn’t be prouder of the guys tonight. For an eighth grader Jared Barr was just amazing out there” said Frederick speaking for himself and Associate Coach Matt Morley.

“The guys were well prepared, they gave it all they had and created some nice chances with our one-man forecheck. It was a great hockey game and both goalies played very well.”

SLC 3, OFA 2 (OT): The Larries got off to a fast start then survived some late scoring heroics by the Blue Devils (9-12) to earn a chance to defend their sectional crown.

“We won our last game against Ogdensburg 7-0 then we came out and scored on our first shift tonight and went into a mode where we started to think that things were going to come easy for us. We knew coming into the game that Ogdensburg was a capable team and they showed up to play tonight,” said coach Mickey Locke after the Larries improved to 14-6-1.

SLC opened the scoring just 33 seconds into the game when the Luke Peets one-timed a centering pass from the right wing by Lukas Arquiett into the back of the net on the first shot of the night. Kody Kocsis also logged an assist.

The lead held until late in the second period. While on the power play, the Larries were whistled for an icing. On the ensuing face-off from the right circle, the puck went right to Jared Barr poised alone in the slot. SLC netminder Nate Burnett made a sliding save with his right pad on Barr’s first close range attempt but the puck bounced right back onto the eighth-grader’s stick and he made no mistake stuffing the rebound into the back of the net with 3:55 left in the second period. Andrew Roddy earned the lone assist on the equalizer.

The Larries regained the lead 11:18 into the third period. After controlling the puck deep in the OFA zone, Arquiett worked it back to Jacob Sutton at the point and he quickly slid across to eighth-grade blueline partner Drew Rose, who sent a shot toward goal through a screen and into the back of the net.

But the Blue Devils regrouped to tie the game with 1:14 left in regulation when a shot from the point by David Middlemiss led to a goalmouth scramble that ended with Jon Tayler knocking a loose puck across the goal line.

After trading chances in the early stages of overtime, the Larries ended the game at the 2:55 mark with a perfectly crafted transition goal.

Kocsis was able to slip behind the OFA defensemen and took a long feed from Arquiett just outside the Devils’ blueline and broke in alone on junior netminder David Prudhomme.

The junior forward, pulling his own version of a T.J. Oshier shootout move, said he decided to go with a deke move as he raced in on the breakaway. He drew the OFA netminder to his left and then flashed back to to the right and slipped the puck into the net for the winner.

Both junior netminders had outstanding games with Burnett posting 29 saves and Prudhomme handling 31 of the shots he faced.

N-N 4 - Malone 1: “Both teams know each other pretty well. Like any other big game, it’s going to come down to the team that makes the fewer mistakes on Sunday,” noted Norwood-Norfolk coach Paul Durant as the top-seeded Icemen look to avenge last year’s loss to SLC in the title game.Freshman forward Kaden Pickering provided the early spark for the Icemen when he struck for a pair of unassisted goals in the first five minutes of the game. He opened the scoring 1:10 into the game when he intercepted a pass and went in to score a shorthanded goal then made it 2-0 at the 5:03 mark by relaying a neutral zone turnover into a breakaway tally.

Austin Cousineau netted the third N-N goal with 1:15 left in the first period assisted by Shane Cryderman and Zeb Brown. Cousineau pushed the Icemen lead to 4-0 midway through the second period assied by Brown and Tyler Fobare before the Huskies got on the board at the 11:58 mark when Tucker Bartenslager finished off a play set up by Kyler Head and Bailey Conklin.

Brandon Richards turned aside 19 of the shots he faced backstopping the win while Joey Brown kept the Huskies (6-14-1) in range with a stellar 46-save effort.

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