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2018-2019 Game Summaries

La Salle College Fends Off NA Rally For Pennsylvania Cup Crown

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The La Salle College Explorers survived a furious North Allegheny rally and scored three goals in the third period, including two empty-net goals, for a 6-3 victory over the Tigers in the Class AAA Pennsylvania Cup final. Sophomore Sam Lipkin netted a hat trick and scored a crucial short-handed goal in the third period to help the Explorers navigate to a sixth Pennsylvania Cup title.

La Salle’s quick-strike ability was on display in the first period as Lipkin gave the Flyers Cup champions a 1-0 lead 20 seconds into the game.

North Allegheny weathered the early storm and evened the score at 1-1 on a Tyler Putnam steal and breakaway goal at the 8:30 mark of the first. La Salle struck back just 28 seconds later on a marker by Michael Casey for a 2-1 advantage.

The Explorers expanded the lead to 3-1 at the 3:24 mark of the second period on another goal by Casey, assisted by Providence College commit, Daniel Sambuco.

As the physicality of the game picked up in the second period, so did North Allegheny’s intensity as the Tigers put together a frenetic comeback to tie the game. North Allegheny cut the deficit to 3-2 at the 13:10 mark of the second period when Haden Shimko sent a puck behind the La Salle net that caromed off the boards to senior Aaron Miller, who banked the puck off La Salle’s sprawling goalie, Aiden McCabe.

The Tigers carried that momentum into another goal with just 1:40 left in the second period as North Allegheny broke loose for a 3-on-2 rush. Junior Tyler Lamark crossed the blue line and dropped the puck to senior Luke Turkovich, who made a great move past one defenseman and sent a perfect pass to Miller on the doorstep for his second goal of the game, and sixth of the playoffs, to knot the score at 3-3.

A cross-checking penalty by Sambuco at the 6:22 mark of the third period set the table for North Allegheny to take its first lead of the game. However, La Salle College not only killed the penalty but scored on a short-handed goal by Lipkin to swing the pendulum back toward the Explorers, 4-3, with 9:21 remaining in the game. La Salle scored two empty net goals in the waning minutes, one by Sambuco and one by Lipkin, to close out a 6-3 win.

Congratulations to the North Allegheny ice hockey team and head coach Mike Bagnato and his staff for a memorable 2018-2019 season. For their play in the Pennsylvania Cup final, and throughout the season, the North Allegheny senior class of Aaron Miller, Nathaniel Heil, Justin Symons, Vincenzo Mazur, Richie Karapandi, Luke Turkovich, Tyler Duderstadt, Sean Parks, Haden Shimko and Dylan Watkins were all recognized as the Wright Automotive Players of the Game.

(Photo courtesy of Pittsburgh Hockey Digest, burghhockey.com).

Ice Hockey Summary vs. La Salle College, 3-23-19

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NA Blanks Peters Township, 3-0, For 3rd Penguins Cup Title

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Photo gallery by J.J. LaBella

The North Allegheny ice hockey team captured its third Penguins Cup title on Tuesday night with a 3-0 shutout over the Peters Township Indians at the UPMC Lemieux Sports Center. The contest pitted the highest scoring offense in Class AAA against the stingiest defense in the classification. The old adage that defense wins championships held true as senior goalie Richie Karapandi and the NA defense earned their fourth shutout of the season and first of the playoffs. Karapandi stopped all 23 shots he faced.

While the game was scoreless through one period of play, both teams were able to display their skilled skating and blazing speed in the opening stanza. Karapandi and Peters Township net minder Alex Wilbert matched each other save for save in the first period, but a costly turnover by the Indians set up the game’s first goal early in the second.

Just 37 seconds into the second period, junior Will Parreaguirre pounced on a Peters Township turnover and fed a pass to Aaron Miller for a 2-on-0 breakaway. Miller kept the puck and burned Wilbert on a backhand deke for a 1-0 North Allegheny lead. Following the NA goal, the Indians turned up the intensity on offense with nine shots on net and numerous scoring chances. However, all nine shots were turned away by Karapandi as the Tigers maintained their 1-0 lead going into intermission.

At the start of the third period, North Allegheny stormed out of the gates and twice hit the post on shot attempts, coming an eyelash away from expanding the lead. At the 5:42 mark of the period, the Tigers did finally break through for some insurance when Justin Symons steered a wrist shot from the top right point that was redirected in front by Parreaguirre for a 2-0 advantage.

Late in the period, Miller put the game away with his second goal of the game, and fourth of the playoffs, with an empty-net tally to finish off a 3-0 Penguins Cup victory for the Tigers. For his play, Miller was named the Wright Automotive Player of the Game.

With the win, North Allegheny advances to the Pennsylvania Cup championship on Saturday to face the LaSalle College Explorers at 4 p.m. at the RMU Island Sports Center. The game will be broadcast live via the internet by the North Allegheny Sports Network.

Ice Hockey Summary vs. Peters Township, 3-19-19

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NA Defeats Bethel Park In Double OT Thriller To Advance To Penguins Cup Finals

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Junior Will Parreaguirre’s game-winning goal at 5:06 of the second overtime propelled North Allegheny to a 2-1 victory over Bethel Park in the Class AAA PIHL Penguins Cup semifinals. Parreaguirre’s hard wrist shot beat Bethel Park goalie Nick Guimond at 12:40 Friday morning, ending another classic playoff marathon against the Black Hawks. The contest was the fourth to go into overtime in the last five playoffs meetings between the two schools.

North Allegheny advances to face Peters Township in the PIHL championship on Tuesday night at 8:30 p.m. The Indians also needed double overtime to defeat Mt. Lebanon in their semifinal, 3-2.

Appearing in the PIHL semifinals for the fifth straight season, North Allegheny struck first against Bethel with a Tyler Putnam goal at the 6:11 mark of the first period for a 1-0 lead. Putnam’s goal was assisted by Vincent Abel and Dylan Watkins.

While North Allegheny had the better of the scoring chances in the first period, Bethel Park began to assert itself midway through the second period. The persistent pressure resulted in a 5-on-3 power play opportunity and Bethel Park cashed in thanks to an Austin Read marker with 1:40 remaining in the second period, tying the game at 1-1.

The contest remained deadlocked all the way into the second overtime despite continuous scoring opportunities for Bethel Park. North Allegheny goalie Richie Karapandi remained poised in net under a barrage of Black Hawk shot attempts, making an astonishing 53 saves to earn Wright Automotive Player of the Game honors.

With Karapandi holding Bethel Park at bay, the Tigers were able to finally find the game-winning goal thanks to a BP turnover that resulted on a 2-on-1 break. That set the stage for Parreaguirre’s heroics and game-winning tally at the 5:05 mark of the second overtime for a 2-1 North Allegheny win.

North Allegheny advances to the PIHL Class AAA championship against Peters Township on Tuesday night at the UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex at 8:30 p.m. The game will be broadcast live via the internet on the North Allegheny Sports Network.

(Photo courtesy of Pittsburgh Hockey Digest, burghhockey.com).

Ice Hockey Summary vs. Bethel Park, 3-14-19

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Strong First Period Propels NA Past Seneca Valley In PIHL Quarterfinals

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North Allegheny earned a fifth straight trip to the PIHL Class AAA semifinals with a 3-2 victory over Seneca Valley on Monday night in the quarterfinal round. After sweeping the Raiders for three wins in the regular season, the Tigers ousted the defending Penguins Cup champions with yet another victory. Senior Aaron Miller sparked the NA offense with two goals and an assist on his way to Wright Automotive Player of the Game honors.

The Tigers leading scorer in the regular season, Miller pounced on his first opportunity at the 7:52 mark of the first period when Justin Symons sent a shot on net and SV goalie Aiden Campbell left an appetizing rebound and a wide-open net. Miller feasted on the rebound for a 1-0 lead.

North Allegheny’s second goal came in similar fashion when senior Haden Shimko sent a backhand toward Campbell and again Miller tickled the back of the net with the rebound for a 2-0 lead at the 10:12 mark of the first.

The Tigers tacked on one more goal before the end of the period thanks to a power-play marker by Tyler Lamark, assisted by Miller and Tyler Duderstadt for a 3-0 lead.

The physicality of the contest picked up in the second period as the two teams combined for 46 penalty minutes. Despite the uptick intensity, neither team scored as NA’s 3-0 lead remained intact.

Not until the 8:35 mark of the third period did Seneca Valley finally solve the NA defense and goalie Richard Karapandi. On their third power play of the night, the Raiders’ Bryce Korner blasted a slap shot from the left point that was deflected in front by Will Hohman to trim the SV deficit to 3-1.  

Receiving another power-play opportunity with less than two minutes remaining in the game, the Raiders cashed in courtesy of a Tyler Draper slap shot that cut the score to 3-2, Tigers, with just 26 seconds remaining. The Seneca Valley rally proved to be too little, too late as North Allegheny hung on in the waning seconds for the quarterfinal round triumph.

In net, Karapandi made 27 saves to earn his 13th victory of the year and first of the postseason. Campbell made 25 stops for the Raiders in a losing effort.

With the win, North Allegheny advances to the PIHL Class AAA semifinals to face Bethel Park on Thursday, March 14 at the RMU Island Center at 9:00 p.m. The game will be broadcast live via the internet on the North Allegheny Sports Network.

(Photo courtesy of Pittsburgh Hockey Digest, burghhockey.com).

Ice Hockey Summary vs. Seneca Valley, 3-4-19

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NA Secures Win At Butler In Regular Season Finale, 5-2

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Junior Tyler Putnam broke open a 2-2 deadlock with three straight goals to propel North Allegheny to a 5-2 victory at Butler on Monday night in the regular season finale. Putnam’s hat trick gives him 10 goals on the season, second best on the team. The win vaults North Allegheny into first place in the PIHL Class AAA standings by one point. Second-place Peters Township plays third-place Bethel Park tonight to decide the top three seeds in the upcoming PIHL playoffs.

The game was knotted up at 1-1 through one period, thanks to goals from Butler’s Bennett Thrash and North Allegheny’s Aaron Miller. Miller’s goal was his team-leading 12th on the season.

In the opening minutes of the second period, junior Will Parreaguirre scored to give NA a 2-1 lead. Butler answered back and tied the game at 2-2 at the 3:49 mark of the period. That set the stage for Putnam’s heroics.

Putnam’s first goal came with 7:02 left in the second period to give the Tigers a 3-2 advantage. Putnam tacked on two more goals in the third period to put away a 5-2 triumph over the Golden Tornado.

In net, senior goalie Richard Karapandi stopped 20 shots to earn his 12th victory of the season. Butler’s Connor Stroebel made 31 saves in a losing effort.

North Allegheny improves to 14-4 on the season and sits atop Class AAA with 28 points. The Tigers will await the outcome of the Peters Township-Bethel Park game to determine their seeding in the PIHL playoffs.

Ice Hockey Summary vs. Butler, 2-18-19

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