2020-2021 Game Summaries
The North Allegheny ice hockey team dropped a 4-2 decision to Malvern Prep in the Class AAA Pennsylvania Cup Championship on Saturday at the UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex in Cranberry.
Making their fourth appearance in the state championship game, the Tigers were seeking their third state crown and got off to a great start in the first five minutes of the contest. At the 3:17 mark of the opening stanza, Trey Gallo sent a shot on net that was not controlled by Malvern Prep keeper Anthony Perti. Sophomore Nate Spak quickly pounced on the rebound for his second goal of the playoffs and NA led, 1-0.
The Tigers had a chance to expand the lead just minutes later when Malvern Prep’s Travis Buckley was charged with a cross checking penalty. However, Quinn Dougherty changed the momentum of the game with a short-handed goal at the 7:09 mark of the period and the game was tied at 1-1. Only 26 seconds later, the Friars struck again as senior Jack Costabile scored for a 2-1 lead. Costabile added another tally at the 9:38 mark of the first for a 3-1 Malvern Prep lead.
The Friars had the benefit of a power play to start the second period and quickly cashed in 20 seconds into the period on a goal by Jimmy Kirk and the MP lead swelled to 4-1. Shortly after the Kirk goal, the Tigers were the recipients of a power play and junior sniper Connor Chi hit top shelf at the 2:40 mark of the second with a wrist shot and NA cut the deficit to 4-2. The goal was Chi’s fourth of the playoffs.
While the Chi goal gave NA a shot in the arm, the Tigers were unable to get any closer in the and ultimately fell 4-2 to the Friars, who won their third Pennsylvania Cup title and first since 2004. Perti earned the win in net with 21 saves. Senior Josh Bailey made 21 saves in net for the Tigers.
Finishing the season with a 16-6-2 record and winning a fourth Penguins Cup title this season, 2021 will go down as a memorable one for the North Allegheny ice hockey team. Congratulations to head coach Mike Bagnato and the entire team for another successful season.
Ice Hockey Summary vs. Malvern Prep, 4-24-21
|SCORE BY PERIODS||1||2||3||FINAL|
On the strength of three third period goals, and a dazzling performance in net by senior goalie Josh Bailey, the North Allegheny ice hockey team won its fourth Penguins Cup championship with a 4-1 triumph over the Mt. Lebanon Blue Devils at the RMU Island Sports Center. The Tigers became the first team since Bethel Park (2000-2002) to win consecutive titles in Class AAA. NA won the 2019 PIHL crown, and with no championship awarded due to COVID-19 in 2020, the Tigers made it back-to-back titles with their win on Monday night.
Looking to get off to a quick start, the fourth-seeded Tigers struck first just 3:40 into the game. Matt Irvin led a 3-on-1 break and delivered an accurate pass to Austin Peterson on the right wing. Peterson then found a wide-open Nate Spak in front of the net for his first goal of the playoffs and a 1-0 lead.
The seventh-seed Blue Devils were the lowest seed to reach the Class AAA final since No. 8 Canon-McMillan beat Seneca Valley in overtime in 2010. Winners of six of its previous seven games entering the title tilt, upstart Mt. Lebanon gave North Allegheny all it could handle in the second period. Outshooting the Tigers 20-5 in the stanza, the Blue Devils’ persistence paid off with a goal by Sam Mitchell at the 6:09 mark and the game was deadlocked, 1-1. Mt. Lebanon continued to pepper Bailey with shots in the second period but NA’s net minder remained stoic as the game stayed tied by intermission. Bailey made 33 saves on 34 shot attempts to earn the victory.
Needing to kill off three penalties in the second period, a seemingly exhausted North Allegheny team was reinvigorated after intermission. In the third period, the Tigers outshot the Blue Devils, 10-6, and took a 2-1 lead on a Connor Chi wrist shot from the high slot that beat ML goalie Austin Martin at the 8:04 mark. NA gained some insurance at the 13:56 mark of the third thanks to a goal by Peterson, his team-leading fourth of the playoffs, for a 3-1 advantage. Sophomore Trey Gallo put the game away with an empty-net marker that was lofted into the Mt. Lebanon net from approximately 170 feet away with just 1:03 remaining to cap a 4-1 victory.
North Allegheny turns its focus next toward the Class AAA Pennsylvania Cup championship game on Saturday at 4:30 p.m. at the UPMC Sports Complex in Cranberry. The Tigers will try to win their third state title when they take on Malvern Prep, who defeated La Salle College High School on Monday night, 4-3 in overtime, in the Flyers Cup title game.
Ice Hockey Summary vs. Mt. Lebanon, 4-19-21
|SCORE BY PERIODS||1||2||3||FINAL|
Connor Chi’s goal just 30 seconds into overtime propelled North Allegheny to a 4-3 triumph over the Peters Township Indians in the PIHL Class AAA semifinals on Monday night at the RMU Island Sports Center. The goal, Chi’s second of the night, punched North Allegheny’s ticket to the Penguins Cup finals next week to face the seventh-seeded Mt. Lebanon Blue Devils.
Monday night’s game marked the fifth time in the last six years the Tigers and Indians met in the PIHL playoffs. Like many of the postseason games in years past, this one was another instant classic between two storied programs.
In a fast-paced first period, both teams lit the lamp twice. Peters Township sophomore Austin Malley opened the scoring with a power play goal at the 3:38 mark of the period. On a night where the NA special teams played a pivotal role, the Tigers answered back with a power play goal of their own when Trey Gallo sent a shot on net that was saved by Tanner Ringwald, but junior Luke Washabaugh jumped on the rebound for a goal at the 5:02 mark to tie the game at 1-1. The tie was short-lived as just a minute later, the Indians regained the lead on a goal by Koby Ringwald to bring the score to 2-1, Peters Township. At the 13:12 mark, a great defensive play by Chi led to a scoring chance on the other end and the junior’s sniper shot beat Tanner Ringwald for a 2-2 tie.
The second period became more of a defensive struggle with the North Allegheny penalty kill unit staving off three Peters Township power play chances. Early in the third period, the Tigers got their second power play chance of the night and cashed in again on a marker by Austin Peterson at the 1:43 mark for a 3-2 lead. The Tigers were 2-for-3 on the night with the man-advantage and stopped the Indians on 3-of-4 power play chances.
NA’s one-goal lead remained intact until the waning seconds of the third period, when Malley netted his second goal of the evening with just 4.3 seconds to play and the game was deadlocked again, 3-3.
Playing in their seventh overtime game of the season, North Allegheny improved to 5-2 in OT contests thanks to Chi’s goal 30 seconds into the extra session for a 4-3 victory.
Senior goalie Josh Bailey made 21 saves to earn the victory, while Tanner Ringwald stopped 19 pucks in a losing effort.
North Allegheny, the reigning Class AAA Penguins Cup champions, advances to the PIHL title tilt to face Mt. Lebanon. The Blue Devils earned their second straight upset on Monday night with a 3-2 win over third-seeded Pine-Richland. The Class AAA championship game will be played on Monday, April 19 at 6:30 p.m. at the RMU Island Sports Center.
Ice Hockey Summary vs. Peters Township, 4-12-21
|SCORE BY PERIODS||1||2||3||OT||FINAL|
With a complete and convincing all-around performance, the fourth-seeded North Allegheny ice hockey team shutout the fifth-seeded Seneca Valley Raiders on Monday night, 5-0, in the PIHL Class AAA quarterfinals at the Baierl Ice Complex in Warrendale. The Tigers scored 47 seconds into the game to gain control and senior goalie Josh Bailey stopped all 32 shots he faced. Earning his first shutout of the season, Bailey was named the Wright Automotive Player of the Game.
With two narrow victories in the regular season over Seneca Valley, North Allegheny earned their 10th consecutive victory over the Raiders with plenty of room to spare on Monday night. In their first playoff meeting with the Raiders since a 3-2 quarterfinal round win in the 2019 playoffs, the Tigers set the tone early with a 2-on-1 break that led to a Trey Gallo goal just 47 seconds into the contest for an immediate 1-0 lead. The Gallo marker was assisted by Connor Chi and Cole Jackman.
The one-goal lead remained intact until the 6:14 mark of the second period when Gallo struck again with a slap shot from near the blue line that beat SV keeper Zander Stark for a 2-0 lead. Gallo’s second goal was assisted by senior Aaron Mark. Just over two minutes later, the Tigers cashed in on a power play chance courtesy of an Austin Peterson marker, assisted by Nate Spak and Chi, and the NA lead swelled to 3-0.
In the third period, the Tigers put the game on ice with another goal from Peterson and a Matt Irvin tally to close out a 5-0 triumph.
With the win, North Allegheny advances to the PIHL semifinals to take on a familiar playoff foe, the Peters Township Indians. The contest will be played on Monday, April 12 at 6:30 pm at the RMU Island Sports Center.
Ice Hockey Summary vs. Seneca Valley, 4-5-21
|SCORE BY PERIODS||1||2||3||FINAL|
Needing a win to secure a home game in the upcoming PIHL Class AAA playoffs, the North Allegheny ice hockey team rallied for a 3-2 victory in an overtime shootout on Monday night at Mt. Lebanon.
In a seesaw affair, it was the Tigers who struck first on a power play goal by Matt Irvin with 3:57 remaining in the first period. The Irvin goal was assisted by Trey Gallo and Connor Chi. However, with only 1:27 left in the opening stanza, the Blue Devils got even thanks to a goal by Aidan Weaver.
Following a defensive and scoreless second period, Ryan Patrick gave Mt. Lebanon a 2-1 lead at the 6:19 mark of the third period. With their backs against the wall, the Tigers answered the bell and knotted the score at 2-2 with 4:55 left in regulation when Kyle Holmes scored, assisted by Gallo and Aaron Mark.
Neither team scored in the first overtime and the game proceeded to a shootout where NA clinched the victory, 3-2. It’s the sixth time NA has played in an overtime game this season and fifth time an NA game was decided by a shootout. The Tigers are 4-2 in OT and 3-2 in shootouts this season.
In net, senior Josh Bailey picked up the win with 21 saves on 23 shots.
With the win, North Allegheny improves to 13-5-2 on the season and sits in a tie for third place with Pine-Richland at 28 points in the Class AAA standings. Mt. Lebanon falls to 9-9-2 and resides in sixth place in the standings. The Tigers will host a Class AAA quarterfinal round game next week.
Ice Hockey Summary vs. Mt. Lebanon, 3-29-21
|SCORE BY PERIODS||1||2||3||OT||SO||FINAL|