The South Division champion Philadelphia Little Flyers survived a quarterfinal scare while Wilkes-Barre/Scranton twice pushed the Northern Cyclones to overtime and the Boston Bandits scored a minor upset of the New York Bobcats in the Eastern Hockey League’s quarterfinal round. Three of the final four teams are from the North Division.
No. 3 Philadelphia Little Flyers vs. No. 6 Hartford Wolfpack
(Little Flyers win series, 2-1)
With the series tied at a game apiece, the Little Flyers took immediate control of Game Three with three first-period goals on the way to a 5-0 series-clinching win. Jude Warner (goal, two assists), Hector Majul (two goals, assist) and Beau Browning scored in the first period and Alec Derks turned back 30 shots in the shutout. Jesse MacIntyre had the Flyers’ fifth goal.
Garrett Gallagher’s goal at 1:05 of OT lifted the Flyers to a 3-2 victory in Game One. John Nugent and Drew Gannon also scored while Todd Schauss and Dylan Vander Esch tallied for the Wolfpack.
Hartford pulled even with a 3-2 win in Game Two behind 19 Spencer Landry saves and goals from Ori Beyamini, Kurt Johnson and Zach Felser.
No. 1 New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs vs. No. 8 Valley Jr. Warriors
(Jr. Monarchs win series, 2-0)
Kris Holmes gave the Warriors an early 1-0 lead in Game One but the Monarchs scored the next four, including Shawn Nelson’s power play game-winner in the second period. Payton Baldillez, Cam Owens and Cam Spicer also scored to nullify a 48-save performance by the Warriors’ Matt Penta. Jake Theut turned back 41 shots for the Monarchs.
The Monarchs raced out to a 4-0 lead in Game Two en route to a 6-2 series-clinching win. Kyle Lajeunesse had a natural hat trick for New Hampshire while Hunter Laslo, Brent Beaudoin and Eric Berglund netted single goals. The Warriors’ Justin DeWitz and Charlie Widmar connected for early third-period goals, making it a 4-2 game at the time. Theut had 23 saves for the win.
No. 5 Boston Bandits vs. No. 4 New York Bobcats
(Bandits win series, 2-0)
Tyler Drevitch’s power play strike with 6:25 left in regulation made the difference in the Bandits’ 3-2 Game One win backstopped by Ryan Hubbard’s stellar 52-save performance. Alex Bonito and Connor Court had the Bandits’ other goals while William Campion and Michael Bronzo delivered for the Bobcats.
The Bandits closed out the series with a 5-3 Game Two win, twice rallying from a goal down. Colin Clapton had the game-winner at 5:46 of the third period and Brandon Yee followed with an insurance score 57 seconds later. Drevitch, Freddy Gerard and Ryan Gouveia also scored for Boston while Lucas Brown, Daniel Malafronte and Brian Schehr had the Bobcats’ scores. Hubbard was again immense in the Bandits’ goal with 40 saves.
No. 2 Northern Cyclones vs. No. 7 Wilkes-Barre/Scranton
(Cyclones win series, 2-0)
The Knights forced two overtime games but couldn’t finish the Cyclones, who prevailed, 2-1 and 5-4.
Jeremy Young had the game-winner at 2:38 of OT in Game One. The Knights’ Kenny Orlando and the Cyclones’ Grant Gallo matched power play goals 1:22 apart in the second period for the only regulation scores. Goalies Drew Weigman (31 saves) of the Cyclones and Daniel Ernandes (36 saves) of the Knights were both outstanding.
In Game Two, WBS’s Chris Deming forced OT with 2:46 left to play but the Cyclones’ Bryan Dallaire ended the series at 4:05 of the first overtime. Kevin Valenti, Riley Christensen, Jack Jenkins and Casper Dryssen all scored for the Cyclones while Dan Perex, Nick Foland and Kenny Orlando connected for WBS. Ernandes had 49 saves in defeat.
(Best of 3)
No. 1 New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs vs. No. 4 Boston Bandits
No. 2 Northern Cyclones vs. No. 3 Philadelphia Little Flyers