West Allegheny Clinches Class AA Penguins Cup for the First Time in School History
/ Pittsburgh Penguins
The legend of the red Mohawks finally lived true Saturday night at CONSOL Enerfy Center for the West Allegheny Indians, who defeated Erie Cathedral Prep in overtime, 4-3, to win their first Class AA Penguins Cup championship in school history.
“That started four years ago during my freshman year,” senior forward Jonathon Levitt said of the fashion trend that the entire team adopted. “It’s kind of been a curse. My freshman year we had three guys who didn’t get the Mohawk and we were three games away from States. It’s kind of been a curse. This year everyone did it and it worked. “
And worked it did. West Allegheny came out on top in a game that could have gone either way.
Sophomore forward Matthew Grebosky scored the game-winner with 5:58 left in overtime. Levitt threw a pass to Grebosky from the top of the circle, who slapped the puck past Erie goalie Trey Brown.
“I saw Levitt opening up and I just saw the ice open up,” Grebosky sad. “I called for it and he gave it to me. Honestly, I wasn’t picking any shots. I was just hoping for the net. I heard the post and I was shocked. I saw the ref give the signal and I just threw my gloves up in the air and so high. I was happy there. It’s great. “
The teams went into overtime having played an evenly matched 50 minutes of regulation. Each team had 20 shots on net entering the extra period, but the Indians recorded five shots during overtime while Erie couldn’t muster any.
“We were moving the puck around pretty well that shift,” West Allegheny head coach Tim Veach said. “We had them pinned in there for a little bit. I think they got a little bit of a clear and then we got it back in. They were moving the puck well.”
It was a back-and-forth affair, with the lead switching hands numerous times. Erie showed a promising start by netting the first goal. The Ramblers had several chances in the first five minutes on the man-advantage as they drew a plethora of penalties, but they would end up scoring shorthanded when senior forward Josh Ordos broke behind the defense to one-arm a shot past Indians goalie Jason Kumpfmiller.
West Allegheny responded by taking a 2-1 lead starting when senior forward Jared DiSanti stuffed a shot home from the side of the net after receiving a pass from senior defenseman Christopher Allison off the faceoff. Levitt scored the second goal when he did the work to draw the defensemen to get the pass back from DiSanti.
Erie tied the score at 2-2 with their second shorthanded tally of the game. It came in the second period when junior forward Zachary Faulkner received a pass from the slot and slammed it past Brown.
West Allegheny would regain a 3-2 lead going into the third period, but Erie stormed back again when senior defenseman P. Alec Zaphiris powered around the Indians defenders to slip the puck under Jason Kumpfmiller.
Though they put up a spirited fight all game, Erie lost momentum in overtime with West Allegheny’s stingy defensive effort – and this time, they couldn’t overcome.
The 4-3 victory is a game that will go into the books for West Allegheny.
“It’s like a storybook, like in a movie,” Levitt said. “It’s an unbelievable feeling. Unbelievable. To be the first in our school history to do it – we’re going to be a part of that school forever now. It’s a great feeling.”