Council Rock South got its season off to an impressive start Wednesday night. The Golden Hawks scored four goals in the first period and went on to a 6-1 win over North Penn in a SHSHL non-league curtain raiser at Revolution Ice Gardens.
Julian Sarne and Kevin Koles scored two goals apiece as the Golden Hawks picked up where they left after a 2020-21 campaign that saw then reach the SHSHL Class AA final.
Sarne got his team on the board 9:11 into the first frame off a feed from Koles on a play that started behind the North Penn net. Matt Yothers answered back for the Knights just 64 seconds later but Sarne scored his second goal at the 11:16 mark and the Golden Hawks rolled on from there. Koles made it 3-1 on a breakaway at 11:16 when North Penn got caught in a line change and Bobby Gilbert extended his team’s lead two seconds before the period ended.
Sarne, a senior, stressed the importance of the fast start. “I think it was very important that we came out buzzing today,” he said. “We need a good start to the season. We’ve got to kick it off great. It’s our senior year. We just needed a win in the books.”
Koles scored his second goal 4:24 into the second session and Matt Constanini completed the scoring at 14:36.
South coach Joe Houk was pleased with the win, but offered a qualifier. “It’s good to get off to a fast start.” he said. “I thought we didn’t play our best game. We were very sloppy, we had a couple selfish players, and stuff like that, But I thought overall, we did a good job.”
Houk said he was concerned about his team maintaining its focus in the late going. “I thought the flow of the game was okay,” he said. “But, when we get games like that, we get real complacent and we start doing stupid stuff. But, we haven’t had a lot of time together yet. By we’ll work on it. We’ll get back at it at practice on Monday.”
The evening’s unsung hero was North Penn goaltender Nick Crist who faced a barrage of 62 shots and stopped 56 of them. It was the junior’s first varsity game.
“He did a great job for us,” said North Penn coach Kevin Vaitis. Sixty-two shots and six goals. “He kept is in it. It could have been worse.”
Vaitis noted that the evening was a learning experience for a young team. “We have some young players that got some quality minutes tonight,” he said, “and we’re going to look to kind of grow and build upon that.”
North Penn 1 0 0—1
C.R. South 4 2 0—6
First-period goals Julian Sarne (CRS) from Kevin Koles, 9:11; Matt Yothers (NP) from Justin Yothers, 10:15; Sarne (CRS) from Sam Cherkassky, 11:16; Koles (CRS) unassisted, 12:55; Bobby Gilbert (CRS) from Cherkassky, 15:58
Second-period goals: Koles (CRS) from Blaize Peppe, 4:24; Matt Constantini (CRS) from Koles, 14:36
Shots: North Penn 21, C.R. South 62; Saves: Nick Crist (NP) 56, Carson Lopez (CRS) 20