Wreckers rout Vikings in finale (Updated)
The Staples-Weston-Shelton ice hockey team erupted for five goals in the third period, cruising by Westhill of Stamford by a 9-2 margin at Milford Ice Pavilion on Friday afternoon.
With the FCIAC Division II victory, coach Ralph Unker’s Wreckers wrapped up their campaign at 6-14, while the Vikings finished up 5-12-2.
Senior center Wyatt Fern netted a hat trick for SWS, adding a pair of assists to round out a five-point effort.
Sean Stewart chipped in with two goals and an assist, while Matthew Weisgerber, Stevie Shulman, Ian Offenberg and Owen Engeldrum added single markers.
Shulman also recorded a pair of assists, while Eric Zurmehle tallied three assists.
Westhill got a power-play goal from Neal Smolinski, with the junior winger beating Wrecker goaltender Matthew Beckoff with a left-sided shot, in the second period to pull within 4-2.
The Vikings nearly equalized late in the period, but the Wreckers made key plays to preserve their two-goal margin.
First, Thomas Meyers cleared a rolling puck off the goal line that resulted from a drive by Westhill defenseman Gunnar Erikson that rattled off the post.
Then, winger Ryan Silk broke through the neutral zone with a clear path to Beckoff. Beckoff, a 6-2, 215-pound sophomore, held his ground and parried Silk’s shot up off the boards with 25 seconds left in the period.
SWS put the game away with a blazing third period.
Offenberg finished off a three-on-one rush with a goal at 52 seconds. Stewart picked up the primary assist and Zurmuehle the secondary.
At 2:41, Fern’s second marker of the game made it 6-2, leading to a Vikings’ timeout.
Westhill then pulled starting goalie Tyler Phillipson, inserting freshman Lucas Ehrlich in net.
Moments later, Speed collected the puck, skated in on Ehrlich and snapped a shot through the five-hole that extended the margin to 7-2 at 5:49.
Stewart, from Zurmuehle and Fern, then buried a shot with 6:52 left, before Fern finished off his hat trick with a goal at 14:37.
SWS grabbed a 1-0 edge at 1:51 of the first period, with Stewart stuffing the puck underneath Phillipson.
Beckoff (17 saves) stopped a drive from Smolinski before Fern wound a shot over the Viking crossbar.
Fern converted his next chance, taking a pass from Shulman in the slot and flipping a backhander over Philipson’s stacked pads at 7:09.
An unassisted goal from Viking sophomore Szczepan Misiak cut the Wreckers’ lead in half, before Speed set up Shulman for a goal at 10:36 to give SWS a 3-1 advantage heading into the first intermission.
Weisgerber then laced a shot from the blue line, high over Phillipson stick-side, and into the top corner for a 4-1 Wreckers’ margin.
Smolinski’s power-play goal cut the deficit in half after two periods, before SWS buried the Vikings with its third-period deluge.