La Salle 5, Father Judge 0

HATFIELD—In the end, it could be said La Salle did what was necessary. Michael Casey scored three goals and Chris Wnek added two more as La Salle shut out Father Judge 5-0 Tuesday night in a Class AAA Flyers Cup quarterfinal game at Hatfield Ice. The second-seeded Explorers, who have now won seven straight, will face Holy Ghost Prep in a Thursday semifinal (6:30 at Hatfield Ice).

In theory the Martin could have been much wider. The Explorers (9-4) outshot the seventh-seeded Crusaders (6-6-1) 47-14 over the course of the 48 minutes.

But Father Judge goaltender Colin McKee was the best player in the building by far. He made 40 saves before leaving the game with an injury with 90 seconds remaining in the third period.
La Salle dominated the first period, outshooting the Crusaders 11-4 but came away with just one goal, courtesy of Casey during a power play at the 11:01 mark off a setup from Dan Whitock. The goal came while Father Judge’s Sean Ford was sitting in the penalty box serving an interference minor.

Casey extended the Explorers’ lead 6:44 into the second period during another power play. The goal game just six seconds after the Crusaders’ Shawn Miller was flagged for high sticking.
But that was all the Explorers could do in the first two periods against McKee, who spent most of that time under heavy enemy fire; his team was outshot 34-8 over the first 32 minutes and the Explorers charged the Crusader net with impunity during much of that span.

“Their goalie played tremendous,” said La Salle head coach Wally Muehlbronner.

Both sides spent considerable time in special-teams situations. The game featured 17 minor penalties.

The third period, which included eight penalties, saw La Salle extend its lead. Chris Wnek beat McKee at the 4:30 mark before scoring his second goal of the night during a power play at 11:50.
With three minutes to go, McKee was pulled for an extra attacker and Casey completed his hat trick into an empty net with 2:08 left in regulation.

Muehlbronner left the rink happy to be advancing but otherwise dissatisfied. “How many two-on-ones did we give up by not playing a simple, smart game like we have been?” he said. “It’s a two-goal game going into the third period, Judge had some really good opportunities and their goaltender is playing phenomenal. That’s a tough game.”

Muehlbronner made it clear his players must step up their games if they hope to attain their goal of winning the 12th Flyers Cup in school history. “Hopefully they understand they were probably lucky to win tonight,” he said, “and we’re lucky to be moving on.”

Father Judge 0 0 0—0
La Salle 1 1 3—5
First-period goals: Michael Casey (L) from Dan Whitock and David Kimmel, 11:01 (pp);
Second-period goal: Casey (L) from Andrew Budzynski, 6:44 (pp);
Third-period goals: Chris Wnek(L) unassisted, 4:34; Wnek (L) from Tim Whitock, 11:50 (pp); Casey (L) unassisted, 13:52.
Shots: Saves: Colin McKee (FJ) 40 and David Marcelinho (FJ) 2, Liam Gross (L) 14

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