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Bellise Saves Bethpage



Official Box Score

Matteo Belisse made 22 saves in the 3rd period as the 1st seed Bethpage Eagles defeated the 6th seed Long Beach Marines 3-1 in a packed barn at Long Beach Municipal Ice Arena to advance to the NYIHSHL 2023-2024 Championship Series. Matteo Belisse made 46 total saves in the Eagles semifinals victory. Matt Marino made 19 stops in a heartbreaking loss for the Marines. The Marko Lisica-less Eagles were outshot 47-22 in the game. 

Bethpage Eagles senior Stavros Likourentzos, who led the league in goals scored and points in Varsity Conference I, was assessed a two minute minor for cross-checking that put the Marines on the play with 12:43 remaining in the opening frame. Matteo Bellise was sensational on the penalty as the Marines generated multiple Grade A scoring chances. Ryan Ribeiro tapped home a rebound for his first career varsity goal with 5:35 left in the 1st period. Nick Morolla entered the zone, toe dragged the defender and fired a shot that led to a net front rebound for Ribeiro to tap home. The Eagles led 1-0 after the first fifteen minutes despite being outshot 14-6. 

Liam Young came in on a breakaway opportunity early in the second stanza, however Matteo Bellise made a huge pad save to keep the Eagles up by one. Jake McAuliffe scored his second of the playoffs with 13:13 left in the 2nd period. Joe Corso got to work on the forecheck, made a pass that was partially deflected that McAuliffe settled before the Eagles senior beat Marino with a backhand shot from an off angle. Eagles captain Jake Kelly was assessed a two and ten for charging with 3:07 remaining in the second stanza. Eagles defenseman Michael Sheehan was assessed a two minute minor for tripping with 2:20 left in the second frame. Long Beach held a 5 on 3 advantage for the next 1:13 however Bellise stonewalled them at every turn before heading into the intermission with a 2-0 lead. 

A stunning save by Bellise in the opening minutes of the 3rd period proved critical to the Eagles holding onto the lead. Liam Young entered the zone, circled the net and made a pass to Quinn Judge who fired a shot that was kicked out by Matteo Belisse towards Luke Pichichero who went to bury the rebound. Belisse made a miraculous stop with the paddle before Nick Morolla picked up the puck and flipped it out of the zone from inside the crease. A cross-checking call that was assessed to Bethpage blue liner Nick Morgan with 5:37 left in the 3rd period put Long Beach back on the power play. Richie Behr Jr scored his fourth and final goal of the post-season on the man advantage with 4:47 remaining in the third frame to cut the Eagles lead to 2-1. Patrick Henry fired a shot that went off the pad of Belisse to Behr Jr who buried it from the back door. 12 seconds later Stavros Likourentzos scored to put the Eagles back up by two. Likourentzos won the draw to Ryan Ribeiro who entered the zone before handing it off to Nick Morolla for a quick shot. A botched clearing attempt by the Marines left Likourentzos stepping into a one-timer from the slot that beat the netminder blocker side. A two minute minor for tripping that went against Joe Henry with 3:48 remaining put the Eagles on the penalty kill. Liam Young forced a turnover off the ensuing draw, blew by the defender as he moved the back from his backhand to the forehand for a shot that Bellise came out of his crease to stop. Matt Marino was pulled in favor of an extra attacker with 1:29 remaining in the 3rd period. The Eagles won the draw forward leading to an opportunity for Nick Morgan and Nick Morolla however the Marines escaped unscathed. With 37 seconds remaining, Jake Kelly was assessed a two minute minor for unsportsmanlike conduct. A big save by Bellise against Pichichero led to the Eagles getting the clear and running out the clock. 

Three Stars Of The Game

Player (Team)StarStat LinePerformance Summary
Matteo Bellise (Eagles)1st46 Saves, Win, 1GABellise stole the game in a 46 save performance in Long Beach against a Marines squad that packed the barn
Ryan Riberio (Eagles) 2nd Goal, Assist Riberio scored the go-ahead goal and assisted on the insurance goal in a statement game for the Eagles freshman
Stavros Likourentzos (Eagles) 3rdGoal Likourentzos is always around the puck and when his team needed a goal it was the league’s leading scorer who put the biscuit in the basket
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