Leading Bishop Guilfoyle Catholic 4-3 after two periods, the Hollidaysburg High School ice hockey coaches talked about getting a quick goal to start the third period, and that's exactly what the players did.
Forty seconds into the period, Brandon Ritchey scored off an assist from Milo Defay to put the Golden Tigers up 5-3 on their way to an 8-3 win in the Laurel Mountain Hockey League quarterfinals.
"In the room in between periods, we talked about coming out with a lot of energy and getting a quick one," Hollidaysburg coach Craig Fitzgerald said. "It set the tone for the remainder of the game. If BG scores the first goal of the third period, it's an entirely different game."
Ritchey, the league's leading scorer, finished with four goals, and Defay scored once and assisted on three others. Kent Brustle and Hunter Shields each had a goal and an assist, and Andrew Vonada assisted on two goals.
Hollidaysburg advanced to the league semifinals for a date with top-seeded Johnstown at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday at Planet Ice in Johnstown.
"I thought the team did a great job," Fitzgerald said. "We were missing three guys. That put a strain on the rest of the group, but they responded well."
BG started the game strong, outshooting Hollidaysburg 13-3 in the first period, but the Golden Tigers emerged from the opening period up 1-0 on a Ritchey short-handed goal.
The Marauders responded with a pair of goals in the first 5:10 of the second period. Ambrose Aquadro scored off an assist from Nicholas Bonsell then assisted on a Daniel Landon goal.
"We were short-handed a couple key players so we went out real aggressive to get a lead," BG coach Gary Landon said. "Their goalie played the best game I've seen him play this year."
Hollidaysburg goalie Brandon Amigh stopped 21-of-24 shots BG put on net.
Ritchey knotted the game 2-2, but Guilfoyle went on top again when Daniel Landon scored on penalty shot. Landon was awarded the penalty shot when John Johnson threw his stick at him in an attempt to stop a breakaway.
Hollidaysburg scored the final goals of the period to regain the lead. Defay scored off an assist from Vonada on a shot that was originally ruled it went from post-to-post without going in.
The referees conferred and called it a goal.
"That was a big bounce-back goal. It shifted the momentum away from them," Fitzgerald said.
Brustle's goal assisted by Lefay with 2:21 remaining in the second period gave Hollidaysburg the lead for good. The Golden Tigers tacked on four more in the third period to seal the win.
"Our games all year went back forth. Once they got up three goals, it kind of took the energy out of us. It was too much to overcome," Landon said.
BG's season ended at 9-9-3.
"We had a very young team with just two seniors. We were in almost every game," Landon said. "We have all our defensemen and goaltending coming back. I'm looking forward to next year."
SCORE BY PERIODS
Bishop Guilfoyle0 3 0-3
Hollidaysburg 1 3 4-8
FIRST PERIOD: H - Ritchey (Shields), 8:26.
SECOND PERIOD: BG - Aquadro (Bonsell), 13:04; BG - Landon (Aquadro), 9:50; H - Ritchey (Defay, Vonada), 9:32; BG - Landon (unassisted), 7:30; H - Defay (Vonada), 4:10; H - Brustle (Defay); 2:21.
THIRD PERIOD: H - Ritchey (Defay), 14:20; H - McKnight (Brustle, Ansley), 7:40; H - Ritchey (unassisted), 6:38; H - Shields (Delozier), 3:58.
Goalies: Bogert, BG, 15-of-23 shots faced; Amigh, H, 21-of-24 shots faced.
Records: Bishop Guilfoyle (9-9-3); Hollidaysburg (15-5-1).