Jersey Boys rebound to old form with 4-3 win
BRECKENRIDGE – The Jersey Boys A League hockey team started its Mardi Gras celebration Tuesday night with a narrow 4-3 win over Fitzgerald Flooring/Empire Burgers.Fitzgerald, which had a full roster of 10 players, looked like it would easily defeat Jersey Boys’ five-member team. However, facing such a challenge seems to be just what Jersey Boys thrives off of. “We play with a small team intentionally,” said Jersey Boys hot shot Mike Ahlman. “It provides more of a challenge.” With not even their small numbers providing enough motivation for Jersey Boys, Fitzgerald’s Randy LeMere came away with a well-aimed goal late in the first period. Suddenly, being one down had Jersey Boys revved up; some players began barking that they shouldn’t be losing to the Fitzgerald team. Others reminisced on how this season has also seemed tougher than last fall. Jersey Boys was 1-3 going into Tuesday night’s game after winning the fall league title.Come the second period, the Boys found their motivation and stepped up their defense to an almost impenetrable back line led by strong man Andy Pacione. By the end of the period, even its offense got a boost as Ahlman took a fast breakaway deep into the Fitzgerald zone, teammates urging him on from the bench telling him to pick up speed. Ahlman tied the game at 1.The already fast paced game gained momentum in the final period and Fitzgerald’s larger squad seemed to be failing as too many line changes were taking an effect on its ability to protect its net. Russ Sikorsky of Jersey Boys, with his quick puck handling skills, finally buried one of his many shots on net early in the third period. That was quickly followed by a Jersey Boys goal from Pacione and then one that bounced off of a Fitzgerald player into his own net.But once Jersey Boys led 4-1, it lost its formidable challenge and Fitzgerald charged the last seconds of the game. LeMere blasted one in from the blue line followed by another by Randy Gill with just one second left in the game. Although it was not enough to bring the game into overtime, the two goals did succeed in taking away some of the glory for the Jersey Boys team. “We’ve had a bunch of close loses,” Ahlman said. “That’s the beauty of this league. Anyone can beat anyone on any night.” Erin Young covers rec sports for the Summit Daily News.
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