By Rick Woelfel
WEST CHESTER—Malvern Prep displayed an abundance of firepower Monday night, Nick Martino scored three goals and assisted on a fourth as the Friars bested Holy Ghost Prep 5-4 Monday night in an Atlantic Prep Athletic Conference game at Ice Line.
The Friars (2-0, 1-0 in the APAC) hadn’t played a game in nearly three weeks but displayed few, if any signs of rust.
“The guys have been working hard, Martino said. “Everyone’s been putting in the time, putting in the effort. We thought we were prepared for the game.”
Martino got the scoring started with 2:26 left in the opening period when he beat Firebird netminder Sean Joyce from close range off a feed from Kyle Washalavitch.
Holy Ghost Prep (1-2, 0-2) drew even on Jack Kelly’s power-play goal exactly 90 seconds into the second frame but Matt Harris put the Friars back in front at the 8:12 mark before Martino, with Washalavitch’s help, made it a 3-1 game at 12:07.
The Firebirds’ Byron Hartley cut the Malvern Prep lead in half when he scored from a deep angle near the right faceoff circle just 16 seconds into the third period.
The remainder of the period featured an abundance of up-and-down hockey and four goals.
When Ryan Sambuco scored a power-play goal for Malvern Prep at the 2:39 mark and Martino completed his hat trick at 4:16, the Friars appeared to have things well in hand.
But the Firebirds didn’t quit. Colin Costello beat Friar goaltender Dan Dougherty at 5:55 and it was a two-goal game once more with plenty of time on the clock.
The two teams spent most of the rest of the game going end to end, a development that did not entirely please Malvern Prep coach Dave Dorman. “I was very happy for about two-and-a-third periods,” he said, “but then after that, it got a little too lose. I think we got caught up in the emotion of the game, and the fans, but it was still nice to get the win.”
Holy Ghost Prep coach Gump Whiteside praised his team for continuing to battle even after falling behind. “I thought we played well in the third period,” he said. “I was a good win for Malvern, but I thought we showed a lot of spunk.
“I told the boys ‘I thought that energy in the third period was great, but you need to play three periods to win a hockey game.’ But I like the compete factor in the third period.”
Holy Ghost Prep 0 1 3—4
Malvern Prep 1 2 2—5
First-period goal: Nick Martino (MP) from Kyle Washalavitch and Andrew Harder, 13:34
Second-period goals: Jack Kelly (HGP) from Rip Spor and Andrew Serafin, 1:30 (pp); Matt Harris (MP) from Ryan Sambuco, 8:11; Martino (MP) from Washalavitch, 12:07.
Third-period goals: Byron Hartley (HGP) from Serafin, :16; Sambuco (MP) from Andrew Harder and Washalavitch, 2:39 (pp); Martino (M) from Charlie Andress, 4:16; Colin Costello (HGP) from E.J. Pohl and Kelly, 5:55; Serafin (HGP) from Danny Behr, 15:45.
Shots: Holy Ghost Prep 26, Malvern Prep 29; Saves: Sean Joyce (HGP) 24, Dan Dougherty (MP) 22.
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