WAYNE, NJ - The Passaic Valley-Cedar Grove ice hockey team is headed to the Big North Bronze Cup Finals following a 5-1 victory over Pascack Valley on Tuesday.
“It was a good victory for us. We lost to these guys the first game of the season, so we had a bit of a ‘lets get one back’ factor…it’s good to get the win and get to the Big North Bronze Cup Final,” said Head Coach Erich Fleischmann.
The Hornets came out with a chip on their shoulder. Knowing a trip to the Bronze Cup Finals was on the line they quickly acted scoring the game’s first goal less than five minutes into the game off the stick of Sam Giuffrida.
“For us it’s extremely important to get out in front. We’ve been playing behind for almost every single game this year, it felt really good to get out in front for a change and have a little push,” said Fleischmann.
Later in the period, puck moving defenseman Matt O’Donnell was able to drive the net for the first of his two goals. O’Donnell’s tip in with 3:23 left in the period was the eventual game-winning goal of the contest.
“[Lukas Zimovcak] made a really good pass I had my stick on the ice and just tipped it in,” said Matt O’Donnell.
O’Donnell’s second goal of the game would come in the third period for the fifth and final goal of the contest. O’Donnell’s power play goal broke an 0 for nine streak for the Hornets.
“[O’Donnell] is a big help when he’s here, just his presence alone…he played a pretty good game,” said Fleischmann.
The Indians would not go quietly, however scoring the lone goal in the second period to make the third uncomfortable for PVCG. The Hornets knew a strong third was necessary having lost a two goal lead in the third period in the teams’ previous match.
“We made it interesting there and gave it back to them, they had some good chances,” said Fleischmann.
Eventually the PVCG offense course corrected and made sure to close out the contest. Goals by Matt Vuolo and Niko Dimitrakiou along with O’Donnell’s helped close out a 5-1 victory for PVCG.
“We took it back over in the third period and when it counted the guys made the plays,” said Fleischmann.
The PVCG Team is clicking on all cylinders offensively with 16 goals in their last four games.
“We’re starting to click offensively we’re moving the puck around,” said O’Donnell.
The Hornets victory improves the team to 10-7-1 on the season winning three of their last four games. Their next game will be in the Big North Bronze Cup Final on Thursday evening.
“It was a tough game again, we always make it look interesting, but it’s good to be in the final,” said Fleischmann.
TAPinto Verona/Cedar Grove is an online newspaper serving the Townships of Verona and Cedar Grove. TAPinto Verona/Cedar Grove is accredited by the New Jersey Press Association, and is a locally owned news organization serving the community.