WEST ORANGE, NJ - John Vilade scored two goals to help Ridge record a 4-2 ice hockey victory over Randolph in the semifinal round of the NJSIAA Public A state tournament Thursday at Codey Arena.
Second-seeded Ridge scored two goals in the first period and opened a 3-0 lead before third-seeded Randolph got on the board for the first time in the third period. Ridge (22-6-1) will play for the Public A state championship Sunday at 6:30 p.m. at Mennen Arena against either Princeton or Watchung Hills.
The Red Devils took a 1-0 lead on Will Allen's goal with 10:28 left in the opening period with an assist from Connor Villa. Vilade converted a feed from Alex Konovalov into a goal with 4:49 left in the first period for a 2-0 lead. Konovalov had the assist again as Ridge built a 3-0 lead on Jack Mandala's goal with 10:49 to go in Period No. 2.
Randolph (12-9-5) finally broke through on a power play with just over 10 minutes left in the final period when Matt Siegal's shot deflected off Jack Zimmer and past the Ridge goalie to cut the Red Devils' lead to 3-1. Ridge made it 4-1 when Vilade connected for his second goal with eight minutes to go.
Zimmer scored for the Rams with 6:24 left to close out the scoring. Randolph actually outshot Ridge, 27-18, overall. Chris Ambrozy made 25 saves in Ridge's victory.
Ridge will appear in the state championship game for the first time in eight years.