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Lions Stay In Playoff Hunt With 2-2 Tie



The West Islip Lions (4-11-1-2) kept their playoff hopes alive after securing one point in the standings following a 2-2 tie with the Kings Park Commack Knights (12-1-3-2). Jayson Krauthamer made his second start in as many nights for a shorthanded Knights team in Monday’s tie game. KPC was without Nick Sattler and Ryan Walsh due to injury. John Coyle and Sean Richardson were assessed game misconducts during the Knights Sunday night overtime win over Sachem. Jesse Lemza, Ronald Kemly and Tyler Granelli did not draw into the lineup for KPC. Ryan Hoenigmann made his Varsity debut for the Knights as fellow JV teammate Jack Franke was recalled for his second career varsity game. Braiden Buccino made his tenth start of the season for the Lions. West Islip was without Charlie Brandenstein, Spencer Jordan and Thomas Albertelli

Ciaran Pollard sniped bar down to give the Lions a 1-0 lead just 8 seconds into the 1st period. 37 seconds later Brian Prange went forehand-backhand to score five hole and tie the game at 1-1. Michael DeSaro scored short side with a backhanded shot that gave the Knights a 2-1 lead with 10:42 remaining in the 1st period. Braiden Buccino stonewalled the Knights for the remainder of the game.

The Lions began to turn the tide in the 2nd period against a Knights squad that had just nine regulars and eleven total skaters in the lineup. James Barbieri sniped short side high to score the game-tying goal on the power play with 10:25 remaining in the second stanza. The goal was accredited to the incorrect player on the official scoresheet. KPC’s Jayson Krauthamer made a series of show stopping saves down the stretch to keep the game tied.

The Lions moved into eighth place after securing a point in the 2-2 tie. West Islip has two games on their schedule, but will likely need to defeat East Islip or Connetqout Sayville BBP to secure a post-season birth. The Lions have yet to beat either team so far this season. The Patriots now find themselves back one point in the standings with one game in hand. Ward Melville has two tough opponents in Kings Park Commack and St. Anthony’s ahead of them, but will also face off against an Longwood team that has yet to win a game. The tie proved detrimental to a Knights team that needs just one more point to clinch second place in the standings. KPC has two chances to collect that point, but they will come against a strong St. Anthony’s program that won’t go down without a fight and a Ward Melville team battling to with West Islip to secure the eighth seed.

Scoring Summary

PeriodTimeGoal ScorerAssistsTeamGoal Type
1st14:52Ciaran Pollard (#9)William Shields (#88)West Islip
1st14:15Brian Prange (#94)Connor Cohen (#18), Stefan Hludzinski (#14)Kings Park Commack
1st10:42Michael DeSaro (#6)Franco Justinic (#32)Kings Park Commack
2nd10:25James Barbieri (#2)Andrew Mervyak (#77), Ciaran Pollard (#9) West IslipPP

Penalties by Period

PeriodTimePlayerPenalty TypeTeam
1st13:12Nicholas Hubbard (#24)Tripping – Minor, 2 MinWest Islip
1st00:55Stefan Hludzinski (#14)Roughing – Minor, 2 MinKings Park Commack
2nd11:10Michael DeSaro (#6)Slashing – Minor, 2 MinKings Park Commack
2nd09:34Stefan Hludzinski (#14)Roughing – Minor, 2 MinKings Park Commack
2nd07:55Christian McGrane (#72)Tripping – Minor, 2 MinKings Park Commack

Three Stars of the Game

StarPlayerStat LinePerformance Summary
1stCiaran Pollard1 Goal, 1 AssistOpened the scoring to set the tone in an impressive performance for the Lions Captain
2ndBrian Prange1 GoalPrange was a standout performer for a Knights squad with just eleven skaters in the lineup
3rdJames Barbieri1 GoalBarbieri tied the game in the second stanza as he continued to come up clutch down the stretch this season

Upcoming Schedule

The West Islip Lions will be back in action against the East Islip Chiefs on Monday January 29th at 9:40 PM. East Islip beat West Islip 9-1 on opening night, with the Chiefs blanking the Lions 6-0 in their second meeting of the season. Now it’s do or die for Ciaran Pollard’s squad as they look to flip the script on their cross-town rival in a game that could make or break their playoff chances.

The Kings Park Commack Knights will face off against the St. Anthony’s Friars on Friday February 2nd at 10:10 PM. KPC defeated St. Anthony’s 4-2 on opening night and it was Deja Vu all over again when the Knights defeated the Friars 4-2 in their second meeting of the season. Stefan Hludzinski’s team will need to bring their A-game in both matchups if they wish to solidify their position in the standings.

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