NORTH OLMSTED — Olmsted Falls proved it belonged on the ice with Southwestern Conference tournament favorite North Olmsted after a one-goal loss Saturday morning.
Unfortunately, the Bulldogs won’t get the chance to get over the hump against the Eagles because they couldn’t get past Brecksville on Sunday evening. Olmsted Falls dropped a 5-2 decision to the Bees in the game to determine which team would battle North Olmsted in today’s championship game.
The Bulldogs (15-9), who hung tough with Ohio’s ninth-ranked Eagles in a 3-2 loss Saturday, started flat against Brecksville by giving up two goals in the game’s first three minutes and never recovered.
Brecksville (15-5-1) also lost to North Olmsted on Saturday, then posted two victories Sunday. The Bees beat Amherst for the second time in the tournament, 4-3 in Sunday’s first game.
Despite holding a 28-22 shots-on-goal advantage, the Bulldogs never appeared to get on track against the quicker Bees. Brecksville consistently beat Olmsted Falls to the puck while the Bulldogs had trouble clearing the puck from the neutral zone in the early moments of the first period.
“Brecksville came out with the energy and we couldn’t match it,” Olmsted Falls coach Brian Thompson said. “The two goals they scored right off set the tempo.”
Mark Pinter began the scoring at 2:14 with an unassisted goal following an interception in the neutral zone. Just 43 seconds later, John O’Neil — with assists from Tony O’Neil and Ryan Milota — made the score 2-0.
Thompson said his team’s all-out effort against North Olmsted earlier in the day might have had something to do with the outcome of the nightcap, but added it was no excuse.
“There probably was a letdown after the (North Olmsted) game,” Thompson said. “I can’t say it was all us, though. Brecksville skated hard and we didn’t. They wanted the game more than we did.”
Olmsted Falls’ Cam Brady made it 2-1 on a power-play goal with 9:42 left in the first period. Brady scored both Bulldogs goals.
Things only got worse in the second period. Pinter picked up his second goal on a power play less than three minutes in, and Tony O’Neil scored a short-handed goal at 6:11 to give the Bees a 4-1 lead.
Brady’s second goal came with 3:04 remaining in the game to make it 4-2, and Brecksville finished the scoring when Pinter completed his hat trick with 12 seconds left. The final goal was an empty-netter after Olmsted Falls took goalie Pat Butterfield off the ice.
North Olmsted and Brecksville will meet for the championship today at North Olmsted Recreation Center at 3 p.m.
Olmsted Falls 1 0 1 — 2
Brecksville 2 2 1 — 5
FIRST: 1. B, Mark Pinter (unassisted), 2:14; 2. B, John O’Neil (Anthony O’Neil, Ryan Milota), 2:57; 1. OF, Cam Brady (Jason Kolar), 5:18. Penalties — B, Adam Gerow (cross-checking), 4:29; B, Bobby Putka (interference), 9:25; B, Dominic Peterre (tripping), 11:46.
SECOND: 3. B, Mark Pinter (Bobby Putka, Anthony O’Neil), 2:57; 4. B, Anthony O’Neil (John O’Neil, Bobby Putka), 6:10. Penalties — OF, Cam Brady (interference), 2:01; OF, Eddie Gerus (roughing), 5:18; B, Ryan Alexander (roughing), 5:18; B, Dan Perko (head contact), 6:38; B, Chris Capuano (interference), 9:02; B, Ryan Alexander (charging), 11:48; OF, Collin Brady (holding), 13:39.
THIRD: 2. OF, Cam Brady (Buddy Gerus, Collin Brady), 11:56; 5, B, Mark Pinter (unassisted), 14:48. Penalties — OF, Buddy Gerus (tripping), :59; B, Ryan Alexander (tripping), 3:35; OF, Buddy Gerus (slashing), 5:33; P, Dan Perko (interference), 9:15.
Shots on goal — Olmsted Falls 7-10-11—28, Brecksville 6-6-10—22. Goalies — Olmsted Falls, Pat Butterfield (21 shots, 17 saves); Brecksville, Dan Miller (28 shots, 26 saves). Power-play opportunities — Olmsted Falls 1 of 8, Brecksville 1 of 4.
AMHERST 8, AVON LAKE 8
Alex Bergendahl scored at 11:31 of the third period to give Avon Lake a tie in the fourth-place game of the Southwestern Conference tournament. Avon Lake (7-17-1) scored four times in the third while Amherst (11-11-2) got three goals in that period.
Amherst 2 3 3 — 8
Avon Lake 3 1 4 — 8
GOALS: (Am) Bill Nagel 3, Shamus Sorrell, Jaron Smith, Ryan Morris, Matt Willard, Brian Sochacki; (AL) Michael Dillon 4, Zack Sherman, Cody Griffith, Makz Galati, Alex Bergendahl.
ASSISTS: (Am) Ryan Morris 4, Shamus Sorrell 3, Bill Nagel 2, Adam Willard 2; (AL) Michael Dillon 3, Cody Griffith 2, Jordan Zwolinski, Alex Bergendahl, Makz Galati, Craig Shaffer.
SAVES: (Am) Courtney Carney 10, Adam Ross 3; (AL) Bryan Emery 24.
NORTH OLMSTED 3, OLMSTED FALLS 2
Steve Bond broke a 2-2 tie with a goal with about nine minutes remaining to give defending SWC tournament champion North Olmsted (17-4) a berth in today’s title game. Tyler Arendec and Sean McBride had assists on the winning goal.
Olmsted Falls 1 1 0 — 2
North Olmsted 1 1 1 — 3
GOALS: (OF) Cam Brady 2; (NO Ronnie Soltesz, Tyler Arendec, Steve Bond.
ASSISTS: (OF) Buddy Gerus 2, Collin Brady; (NO) Chad Murphy, Sam DeJoy, Mike Konyesni, Brandon Hammermeister, Tyler Arendec, Sean McBride.
SAVES: (OF) Pat Butterfield 12; (NO) Zech Laughbaum 9.