Boston High School: Billy Stahley

Recap: No. 2 Cathedral 10, No. 7 Central Catholic 1

January, 25, 2015
Jan 25
WEST SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – Their numbers have become fantasy-like over the first half of the season.

Springfield Cathedral has been tallying up goals as swiftly as the stock market takes in shares on a good day.

Through 12 games, the No. 2 Panthers have lighted the lamp 102 times as they continue to make easy work of the opposition. The latest team to get butchered was No. 7 Central Catholic on Saturday.

The Raiders were left in a daze after being blown out 10-1 at the Olympia Ice Center -- the most goals Central has surrendered since allowing eight to Malden Catholic a year ago.

Cathedral (having now scored 47 goals in its last five games) jumped on the Raiders (10-4-1) for three first-period scores and never looked back.

D.J. Petruzelli, Johnny Leonard and Riley Prattson each scored a pair of goals to improve the Panthers record to 12-0-2. This meeting was the second of the season between the two hockey powers. Back in December, Cathedral handed the Raiders a 6-0 defeat in the opening round of the Pete Frates Winter Classic.

"This year we have really stressed the little things more than anything else," said Petruzelli, a Quinnipiac commit. "In the past we have gotten beat because we haven't played with the intensity that we need to. Our team focus this year is to do those things correctly and I think that is what has made us so successful this year."

Right away, Petruzelli set tempo in this one by scoring just 52 seconds in for a 1-0 lead. Later in the first period, on the power play, Prattson was left unattended in the left circle. After taking a nice feed from Petruzelli, the sophomore fired a point blank shot over Raider goaltender Kyle Thing's shoulder putting Cathedral up by two goals. In the waning moments of the frame, Zac Prattson, from a sharp angle inside the right circle, banked a shot off of Thing's left leg pad and into the net making it a three-goal advantage.

"We knew they had a long bus ride so we felt if we could jump on them early then we would have a good chance of winning this game," Petruzelli said. "We played four lines and, for the most part, we all rolled pretty well. This year is a different team than I've ever been apart of here. We have a lot of great core guys in the room and we are going to continue to do whatever it takes to keep our level of play up."

The aggressiveness from the Panthers never heeded entering the middle period. After killing off a 31 second 5-on-3 opportunity early, Cathedral proceeded to attack the Central zone at will. Within a span of 10 seconds midway through the frame, Cam Griffin and Prattson each found the back of the net to increase the Panthers lead to 5-0. A few minutes later, with Cathedral freshman Devan Tongue in the penalty box for a leg check, Leonard broke in alone on new netminder Ben Zargaj, beating the junior with a backhand.

Leonard would make his presence felt again shortly thereafter. With Dan Petrick finishing up his minute and a half tripping infraction, the sophomore defenseman returned to the ice and back checked Raider defenseman David Sheehan off of the puck just inside the offensive zone. Leonard alertly gained control of it and flew down the ice unscathed before flipping a shot over Zargaj's glove for a 7-0 advantage.

Leonard, a junior and future UMass-Amherst product, leads the team with 27 goals.

"When these kids move the puck they are a really good team," Panthers head coach Brian Foley said. "They are all playing unselfishly which is the biggest thing. There is a lot of positive energy on this team so hopefully we can just keep it going, keep working hard and play good defense. Johnny has been pretty automatic for us. He is a very good goal scorer. You feel good whenever he is moving in on the goalie like that. Overall we have some good balance and depth on this team and getting production from a lot of kids."

Later in the period, the Raiders finally got on the board courtesy of Billy Stahley's hard wrist shot from the right circle. But with only 29 seconds showing before the second intermission, Petruzelli notched his second goal, firing a shot past Zargaj from the slot for an 8-1 advantage.

Central will come away from this game knowing it put up some quality shots on net, yet were stoned throughout thanks to the solid play of goaltender Keith Petruzelli. The sophomore, who is committed to Quinipiac University, stopped 33 of 34 attempts.

"Obviously we didn't get the goaltending we were looking for," said Central head coach Mike Jankowski. "I thought our energy was good but our ability to finish wasn't very strong. Their goalie made some big saves when he needed to. I really can't come away too disappointed in how we played today. The effort was there and we out-shot them (34-30). Hopefully it is onward and upward from here. Other than the score sheet, it was a good game. When Cathedral had their chances they capitalized. They are a very good team."

With this one well in hand, all Cathedral wanted to do was run out the final 15 minutes and move on. But before they did, the Panthers were able to notch a couple of more markers with Peter Crinella and Kyle Kazeroid adding insult to injury.

"I feel our strength as a team is a lot better than last year," Foley said. "All of these kids have worked very hard in the off-season and it is paying off for us."

Super 8: Central Catholic 4, St. John's Prep 1

March, 4, 2013

LOWELL, Mass. -- In the final minute of the second period, Central Catholic goalie Colin Soucy found himself staring down the barrel of future Providence Friar Brian Pinho.

With the Raiders holding a 3-1 lead, the St. John's Prep standout had just forced a turnover at the Raiders blue line and walked in all alone. Pinho aimed for the high, glove side but Soucy flashed his mitt to nullify what could have a momentum - and game - changing goal.

Soucy made eight more stops in the third period, finishing with 22 for the game, and the eighth-seeded Raiders pulled the early shocker of the Super 8 by knocking off the top-seeded Eagles, 4-1.

"I knew what his moves were," said Soucy, drawing on the experience of playing the Prep back in December. "He came in, he was eyeing the glove side, and I just kicked out and made the save. I learned a lot on how his head moves, his stick fakes and everything like that. I knew that he shot glove a lot so i just wanted to make the big saves."

Raiders (15-5-3) coach Mike Jankowski not only felt that stop kept the Prep (17-3-1) from getting any spark of life, but it was also a huge confidence booster for his junior netminder, given who the shooter was.

"It was huge, especially with who we turned it over to," Jankowski admitted."You don't want to turn it over to anybody but if you turn it over to him...that's just a testament to [Soucy] and what he's able to do. Not looking at who it is but doing what he needs to do to shut him down and move forward."

Shots were even through the first two frames but Central seemed to more jump in its step while the Prep was surprisingly flat, something they weren't able to shake for the entire contest. The Raiders also cashed in the game's first goal as Lloyd Hayes fired a shot on Prep goalie Billy Price. Price made the initial stop but the rebound accidentally caromed off one of his defensemen and went right back into the net at 5:08.

The Eagles made amends on the power play just over five minutes later as Tyler Bird screamed a shot through the Central crease that got blocked but founds its way to Jimmy Currier, who stuck in a backhander to tie the game at 1-1.

Kevin Regan put CC back on top just one minute into the second, snapping off a beauty of a one-timer off a feed from Billy Stahley. Defenseman Nick Gorski, who also played a stellar game in his own end, contributed to the offense by rifling a shot into an open net off a long rebound with Price out of position. Central tacked on one final goal in the third, courtesy of Alex Lester.

"We had a lot of momentum from the Hingham game coming into this and we all knew that no one was giving us credit for what we can do," Gorski said. "We knew we could beat them, we already beat them this year. They’re a very strong program and we definitely knew we had a hard game coming. The first period really showed it. We came out flying and we just continued that for the rest of the game."

The two teams will meet again on Thursday (7:45 p.m.) for game two of the best-of-three series at Stoneham Arena.