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High School Sports

Flurry of goals propels Avon to Baron Cup title game

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    Avon High School's Zach Zwierecki (19) celebrates a goal with Gabe Intagliata (9) on Friday night, Feb. 10 against NDCL.

    KRISTIN BAUER / CHRONICLE

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    Avon High School's Zach Zwierecki (19) slaps the puck into the goal as NDCL's Connor Zoul (8) trails behind on Friday evening, Feb. 10.

    KRISTIN BAUER / CHRONICLE

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    Avon High School's Leo Goetz (10) shoots for the goal as NDCL's Connor Zoul (8) trails behind on Friday evening, Feb. 10.

    KRISTIN BAUER / CHRONICLE

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BROOKLYN -- Avon earned its second trip to the Baron Cup II championship game by scoring three goals in a 1:33 span of the first period en route to a convincing 6-2 win over Notre Dame-Cathedral Latin at the Brooklyn Recreation Center on Friday night.

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Avon High School's Zach Zwierecki (19) celebrates a goal with Gabe Intagliata (9) on Friday night, Feb. 10 against NDCL.

KRISTIN BAUER / CHRONICLE Enlarge

The Eagles (27-5-1) will face Southwestern Conference foe Olmsted Falls in the 3 p.m. championship game Sunday after the Bulldogs stunned White South champion Chagrin Falls with four first-period goals on just eight shots during a 5-1 victory.

Avon has beaten Olmsted Falls (12-12-1) four times this season, with three of the games going to overtime.

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Avon High School's Zach Zwierecki (19) slaps the puck into the goal as NDCL's Connor Zoul (8) trails behind on Friday evening, Feb. 10.

KRISTIN BAUER / CHRONICLE Enlarge

“The plan was to get a quick start and try to relax a little bit,” Eagles coach Kyle Botos said. “Three goals like that kind of settles everybody in.”

The Eagles pressured NDCL (14-9-2) from the start and it paid off with the three scores in less than two minutes midway through the first period.

Defenseman Leo Goetz started the scoring with a slap shot from the right wing on assists by Shane Docherty and Alex Provenza with 8:56 left in the first period.

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Avon High School's Leo Goetz (10) shoots for the goal as NDCL's Connor Zoul (8) trails behind on Friday evening, Feb. 10.

KRISTIN BAUER / CHRONICLE Enlarge

It only took Zach Zwierecki 10 seconds to score his 58th and 59th goals of the year, leaving him one short of the county record by Avon’s Eric Novakovic during the 2013-14 season when Avon last made the Baron Cup title game. They lost 3-1 to Western Reserve Academy in that final.

The first goal came on assists by Gabe Intagliata and Zach South at the 7:43 mark and the second on a Goetz assist. The 3-0 lead allowed the Eagles to stick to their relaxation game plan.

“Right after we did that, on the faceoff you could kind of see the wind come out of (NDCL’s) sails,” Zwierecki said. “Some of us let it get to our heads a little bit, thinking we had this game. We had to keep coming at them hard. We are definitely looking to win this and get the first one in school history.”

The Lions scored goals in each of the last two periods, but both were followed by an Avon score by Docherty to keep NDCL from building any momentum.

Docherty moved the lead to 4-1 early in the third by scoring on assists by Zwierecki and Intagliata at 12:54. NDCL’s Jaret Cippollito scored with 4:01 left to trim the lead to 4-2.

Docherty didn’t quite repeat Zwierecki’s 10-second flurry in the third but he came close, tallying twice in a 27-second span to put the game away for the Eagles. Zwierecki picked up his fourth point with an assist on the first, while Provenza and Ian Dargai were credited with the final assists of the night.

“We were in the locker room before the game talking about how we needed to come out and get a quick start,” said Docherty, who was on the Baron Cup final team three years ago. “I was part of that my freshman year and it was heartbreaking. We want to come out better than ever and win this thing.”

Contact James Brady at 329-7135 or jbrady_ct@yahoo.com.

Avon 6, NDCL 2

FIRST PERIOD: (A) Leo Goetz (Shane Docherty, Alex Provenza), 8:56, (A) Zach Zwierecki (Gabe Intagliata, Zach South), 7:43, (A) Zwierecki (Goetz), 7:33. Penalties: None.

SECOND PERIOD: (N) CJ Natale (Trant Szmania), 5:25. Penalties: (A) Provenza (2:00 roughing), 2:23, (A) Docherty (2:00 hooking), 1:02.

THIRD PERIOD: (A) Docherty (Zwierecki, Intagliata), 12:54, (N) Jaret Cipollone (Natale, Ryan MacDonald), 4:01, (A) Docherty (Zwierecki), 2:34, (A) Docherty (Provenza, Ian Dargai), 2:07. Penalties: (A) Owen McDougald (2:00 tripping), (N) Matt Arko (2:00 slashing).

NDCL 0 1 1 -- 2

Avon 3 0 3 -- 6

Shots on goal: NDCL 35 (7-14-14), Avon 33 (11-12-10). Saves: (NDCL) Bobby Zoul 27, (A) Danny Fielding 33. Power-play opportunities: NDCL 0-2, Avon 0-1.



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