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Area minor hockey team vy for state, regional tournament honors

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A total of eight area minor hockey teams will be heading to their respective New York State Amateur Hockey Association tournaments this weekend while the Tri-Town Timberwolves PeeWees will be looking to defend a northeast regional tournament title in Rhode Island.

LIGHTNING

18-UNDER BOYS

The Louisville Lightning 18-Under boys team will be in Amherst for the Tier III tournament starting this morning against the Fulton Raiders starting at 11:45 a.m. They return to action Saturday morning at 6:15 a.m. against Mohawk Valley before wrapping up the opening round against Great Neck at 3:25 p.m.

The other division teams include Saranac Lake, the Valley Eagles, Bear Mountain and Jamestown.

The semifinals are Sunday morning and the title game at 6 p.m.

THUNDER MIDGET BOYS

The St. Lawrence Thunder Midget boys are slated to compete in Amherst at the Tier II 16-Under tournament. They open this morning at 7:50 a.m. against Monroe County before taking on Niagara Jr. P.E. this evening at 7:05 p.m. They close out the preliminary round on Saturday at 11:45 a.m. against the Long Island Edge. The other division teams include Long Island Rebels, New Hartford, GNY Stars and Bud Bakewell.

The top two teams from each round-robin division advance to the Sunday morning semifinals. The championship game is slated for Sunday at 1:30 p.m.

LOUISVILLE,

N-N MIDGET BOYS

The Louisville Lightning and Norfolk-Norfolk Minor Hockey Midget boys teams will be chasing Tier III 16-Under tournament honors in Amherst.

Both teams get the weekend underway this morning at 6 a.m. with Louisville facing the Valley Eagles and N-N taking on Alexandria Bay.

Louisville then faces off against Batavia GAHA at 5:15 p.m. while N-N goes up against Jamestown at 3:10 p.m. The two Northern Zone teams close out their preliminary rounds on Saturday at 9:55 a.m.with N-N playing Bronxville and Louisville squaring off aginst Palisades.

The semifinals are Sunday morning and the championship game at 1:30 p.m.

ICE STORM 19-U GIRLS

The North Country Ice Storm 19-Under Girls will be chasing a Tier II title in Rochester starting today at 1:20 p.m. against Skaneateles. The Ice Storm then take on Cazenovia tonight at 8:15 p.m. before closing out the opening round on Saturday against Brewster starting at 6:40 p.m.

The semifinals are Sunday morning and the title game at 4:10 p.m.

The teams competing in the other division include the Buffalo Hornets, the Island Waves, Tompkins-Ithaca and Chazy.

ICE STORM,

THUNDER 16-U GIRLS

Two Northern Zone teams will be vying for top honors at the Tier II 16-Under tournament as both the North Country Ice Storm and St. Lawrence Thunder are slated to make the trip to Rochester.

The Ice Storm open against Monroe County today at 11:45 a.m. before facing Skaneteles this evening at 6:40 p.m. They finish the preliminary round on SAturday at 11:45 a.m. against Troy-Albany. The Thunder make their tournament debut against Cazenovia today at 11:30 a.m. then take on West Seneca tonight at 6:40 p.m. before closing out the first round aginst Brewster on Saturday at 11:45 a.m.

The semifinals are both slated for 9:10 a.m. on Sunday and the championship game at 4:10 p.m.

ICE STORM

12-UNDER GIRLS

The North Country Ice Storm 12-Under Girls team are slated to compete for the Tier II title in Rochester starting this afternoon against the CNY Bobcats starting at 3:10 p.m. They return to the ice Saturday monrining at 6:25 a.m. to face the Buffalo Regals before going up against West Seneca in the opening round finale at 3:25 p.m.

Both semifinals games are scheduled for Sunday at 7 a.m. and the tournament final at 2 p.m.

TIMBERWOLVES PEEWEES

Fresh off their second straight state Tier III 12-Under tournament win last weekend in Amherst, the Tri-Town Timberwolves PeeWees are slated to Rhode Island this weekend looking to defend their Northeast Regional Tournament title.

They are slated to open against New Hampshire today starting at 6:40 p.m. They return to action on Saturday with games against Connecticut starting at 8:20 a.m. and Massachusetts starting at 2:30 p.m.

The tournament semifinals are Sunday morning and the title game at 3 p.m.

Coached by the trio of Brad Adams, Chad Phippen and Chris Rose, the Timberwolves opened the state tournament with a 5-0 win over Onondaga then skated to a 5-1 decision over Jamestown before falling 6-2 to Palisades.

Despite the loss, the Timberwolves managed to qualify for the semi-finals as the second seed behind Palisades in their division. They went on to beat Bronxville, the top seed from the other round-robin division, 3-1 in the semis, setting up a rematch with Palisades in the state final. Palisades advanced via a 3-2 decision over Saranac Lake. The Timberwolves avenged their preliminary round loss with a 4-3 overtime win in capturing a second straight state title.

In the win over Onondaga, Noah Adams netted two goals. Jah Robertson and Logan Shantie tallied a goal and two assists each. Ryan LePage struck for the other goal while Brendan Phippen and John Sullivan each notched a pair of assists. Rico DiMatteo and Torran Robertson combined to backstop the shutout.

Against Jamestown, Jah Robertson fashioned a goal and two assists. Kaleb Rathbun (1 assist), Olivia Hunter, Adams and Phippen struck for the other goals while Carter Rose logged a solo assist. DiMatteo and Torran Robertson again shared crease duties.

In the first-round loss to Palisades, Payton Felix had a goal and assist. Rathbun netted the other goal while Jarrett St. Hilaire earned an assist and DiMatteo went the distance between the pipes.

The semi-final round win over Bronxville saw Jah Robertson (1 assist), Adams and St. Hilaire score goals as the Timberwolves broke away from a 1-1 tie with two goals over the final four minutes. Felix, Phippen and Rose each tallied solo assists while DiMatteo backstopped the win.

In the title game, Phippen converted on a rebound off a shot by Adams 2:50 into the second 10-minute overtime to lift the Timberwolves to the title after Palisades had battled back to tie the game with 2.5 seconds left in regulation. Rose also helped set up the game-winner. Rathbun finished with two goals and an assist. Adams had two assists along with Jah Robertson. St. Hilaire struck for the other goal. Shantie and Grant Taylor each posted solo assists and DiMatteo worked the crease for the win.

“We were defending champions so the bullseye was on our backs,” noted coach Rose. “It was a very emotional win for us. There was a big relief of pressure after Brendan scored the overtime goal.”

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