Downingtown East Wins Flyers Cup

Downingtown East defeated Central Bucks South 4-3 in overtime Thursday night to win the Class 2A Flyers Cup at Hatfield Ice.

Luca Pisai scored the winning goal with 2:10 left in the first sudden-death overtime period.

This account of the game was published in the Intelligencer on Friday, March 16 and the newspaper holds the copyright.

Downingtown East 4, Central Bucks South 3

By Rick Woelfel

HATFIELD— The performance was held on a stage that measured precisely 200 feet long and 85 feet wide. And on that grand stage, Luca Pisani was the brightest star of all. Pisani’s goal, 7 minutes and 50 seconds into overtime, gave Downingtown East a 4-3 win over Central Bucks South Thursday night at Hatfield Ice in a Flyers Cup Class 2A final that was the ultimate advertisement for interscholastic hockey.

The second-seeded and defending championship Cougars, who claimed their four Cup since 2010, went on the power play when the Titans’ Nick Morelli drew a holding penalty at the 7:09 mark when he took down a Cougar on the right wing at the blue line in front of the Titans’ bench and directly in front of one of the referees.

The winning goal came on a slapshot from the left point.

It was Pasani’s second goal of the game; he was named the tournament’s Most Valuable Player.

South coach Sean McGinty directed a stream of verbiage at the officiating crew following the goal and afterwards his emotions were still running on high. “In my opinion… you can’t make that call,” he said. “It’s overtime. It’s the Flyers Cup.”

The Titans took a 1-0 lead at the 5:37 mark of the first period when Joe DeLaurentis parked himself on the goal line to the left of the Cougar net and found Reis Braccio in front, Braccio found the back of the net with a forehander. That was the only goal of a fast-paced opening session.

Downingtown East drew even on a second-period power-play chance. The Titans’ Dominic Patrone was sent to the box for high sticking at the 11:59 mark and it took the Cougars just 28 seconds to score. Pisani launched rocket from the center of the ice just inside the blue line and found his target inches off the ice just inside the right post.

Braccio put the  top-seeded Titans (30-4) ahead with 1:08 left in the period on a goal that produced traffic in front of the Cougar net. Goaltender Matt Shandler was knocked to the ice in the midst of he scramble. He regained his feet but Bracio scored in the midst of the scrum. The Cougars argued for goaltender interference but the goal was allowed to stand.

DeLaurentis and the Cougars’ Jack Barton traded goals two minutes, 15 seconds apart in the third period before Patrick Bobko tied the game for Downingtown East on a slapshot from the point with 5:03 left in regulation.

It was a game that saw the two teams push each other to a level that only truly outstanding teams can aspire to. Even in the midst of his disappointment, South captain Matt Stoll sensed that.

“It’s awesome,” he said, “playing at such a fast pace. Knowing that for some players, this is the highest level we’ll ever play at. “It’s awesome. It’s truly an honor to make it this far.”


Notes: South was trying for its third Flyers Cup title in five years. Downingtown East will play in the state championship game on March 24. The Cougars, who held a 35-21 edge in shots, are the first Class 2A team to defend the Flyers Cup title since Council Rock South six years ago.




Downingtown East 0 1 2 1—4

C.B. South 1 1 1 0—3

First-period goal: Reis Braccio (CBS) from Joe DeLaurentis, 5:37.

Second-period goals; Luca Pisani (DE) from Mark Stankiewicz and Eric Stankiewicz,, 12:27 (pp); Braccio (CBS) from Dominic Patrone, 15:52.

Third-period goal: DeLaurentis (CBS) unassisted, 3:30; Jack Barton (DE) from Justin Cohn, 5:45 (pp); Patrick Bobko (DE) unassisted, 11:57.

Overtime goal: Pisani (DE) from MIke Bolger, 7:50 (pp).

Shots: Downingtown East 35, C.B. South 21; Saves: Matt Shandler (DE) 18; Tim White (CBS) 31.

Records: Downingtown East (19-5); Central Bucks South (30-4)



A look back at Thursday’s Flyers Cup 2A final

Downingtown East’s Luca Pisani, who scored two goals, including the game winner,  is #6.

His teammate Mike Bolger is # 98. Joe DeLaurentis of Central Bucks South is #66.

Photo by Dara Nappen King

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s