BRISTOL—Council Rock North and Neshaminy had a lot to play for Wednesday night. Both teams were trying to enhance their standing in the eyes of the Flyers Cup Competition Committee and the ‘Skins were trying to wipe away the memories of 6-1 loss to Council Rock South in their last start.
It was the Indians who prevailed, and in dramatic fashion, overcoming deficits of 4-0 and 5-1 to post a 6-5 win at Grundy Arena. Nick Hahn scored what proved to be the winning goal with 5:20 remaining in regulation.
Council Rock North improved to 5-6 overall and 4-5 in divisional play. The win is sure to make a lasting impression While North competes in the Class AA Division of the SHSHL, the Indians are a Class A team for Flyers Cup and are doing their best to make a case for inclusion in the field.
North coach Greg McDonald was asked if the win was his team’s biggest to date.
“I’d probably say so,” he said. “I think we had all but one player here tonight. It was the first time we had a full roster, so we were able to kind of manage the game differently. Certainly, by the boys’ reaction, I think it was the biggest win of the year.
At the end of the first period, the Indians were staring into the abyss. Goals from Jacob Adami, and Joey Hornung, and two from Max Gallagher, gave Neshaminy (8-3-1, 5-3 in the division) what seemed to be a commanding 4-0 lead.
Jackson Accardi got North on the board 1:13 into the second frame but David McColgan answered for Neshaminy with a power-play goal at the five-minute mark to seemingly restore the status quo.
The Indians kept at it however. Accardi scored his second goal of the game, a shorthanded effort, at 5:40, and Jackson Mosley followed with a goal of his own at 9:23 to make it a 5-3 game heading into the third period.
Neshaminy kept up the pressure as the final session began. Mosley scored his second goal of the night at 4:13 before Karson Grainey tied the game at 6:16.
But North found itself shorthanded going down the stretch. With 7:35 left in regulation, Mosley was called for slashing and drew a 10-minute misconduct along with it. That gave him four penalties on the night and an automatic game misconduct. With 3:39 still to play, Accardi drew a 10-minute misconduct penalty of his own.
But Neshaminy persevered and Hahn sent his teammates into celebratory mode with his game-winning goal. Hahn, a sophomore, said the Indians were poised to continue their comeback as the final period began.
’We had great (chemistry) going into the third,” he said. “We were pumped up and ready to go.”
The events of the last two periods left Neshaminy coach Matt DeMatteo perplexed and frustrated. His team was ranked fifth in the latest set of Class AA Flyers Cup rankings and the loss was a black eye, or perhaps a left hook to the jaw.
“You get a four-goal lead and you can’t keep it, that’s embarrassing,” he said. “We came out, we stuck to the game plan early on, we played a good first period, then the last two periods we just fell apart.
“We didn’t stick to the game plan. Top to bottom, we just abandoned it and I don’t know why. If something is working, why wouldn’t you stay with it?”
Council Rock North 0 3 3—6
Neshaminy 4 1 0—5
First-period goals: Jacob Adami (N) from J.J. Hathaway, 4:30; Joey Hornung (N) from D.J. Harris, 11:52; Max Gallagher (N) from Hathaway, 14:31; Gallagher (M) from Ryan DeMatteo, and Liam Mooney, 15:02
Second-period goals: Jackson Accardi (CRN) from Karson Grainey and Nick Hahn, 1:13; Dan McColgan (N) from Hathaway, 5:00 (pp); Accardi (CRN) from Grainey and Jackson Mosley, 5:40 (sh); Mosley (CRN) from Zach Weissman and Grainey, 9:23
Third-period goals: Mosley (CRN) from Weissman and Lucas Siomos, 4:1; Grainey (CRN) unassisted, 6:16; Hahn (CRN) from Weissman and Siomos,11:40
Shots: Council Rock North 32, Neshaminy 33
Saves: Ian Goldberg (CRN) 28 Cory Hemberger (N) 26