Farmingdale will meet Neumann in the D1 ChampionshipECRHA March 4th, 2017 at 4:55PM March 4th, 2017 10:55PM
“Game of the weekend” has been thrown around a few times throughout friday and Saturday. But the D1 winner’s final between Farmingdale and Neumann certainly takes the cake so far.
With Neumann coming off a lopsided victory against Rhode Island last night, and Farmingdale scoring late to beat West Chester, and the interactions these two teams have had the last two years, everyone knew this was the game to watch. With the stands filled and family and players lined along the boards, we got underway. And in under a minute, it was Chris Russolello and Farmingdale striking first with a wrister from the slot that sailed into the top right corner of the Neumann net. We saw four minutes afterwards of some of the most intense, fast paced, physical roller hockey you will see. The teams traded penalties, and we played 3 on 3 hockey for over four minutes. It was at the tail end of the 3 on 3 that Michael Strofe would find a puck at the bottom of the circle and fire it home. And 17 seconds later Phelan shot a one timer into the upper left corner of the net to put Neumann up 2-1. After a wicked slash by Farmingdale’s goalie Muccio-Schrimpe, D1 scoring title winner, Tyler Kraft, put the Knights up 3-1 on the powerplay. Play continued hard and fast with teams taking shots left and rights, and plenty of trash talk between the two teams, and it was at 9:20 of the second that Luc Corso was able to take a shot and watch it trickle through Adam Goggio and into the net to cut the lead to one. As the third period started, you could tell this game was far from over, as Shane Fox got called for a hook near center, and Luc Corso made him pay a minute later, scoring his second of the game and tying the game at 3. But, less than a minute following, Michael Strofe found the scoresheet again after a bad change on the side of Farmingdale. Farmingdale would call their timeout with 2:59 on the clock, and 40 seconds later, Russolello tied the game up at 4. Then, chaos ensued. Neumann was applying pressure as the final minute began, and Farmingdale’s Dustin Muccio-Schrimpe made a stretching toe save that kicked out to the blue line and sparked a 3 on 1 for Farmingdale, as they passed their way down the rink, it was former Neumann player PJ DiMartino who won 2 national championships with the school, would fire a shot past Goggio and the Sportsplex erupted. The D1 winners final definitely lived up to the hype. Final Score: Farmingdale 5 Neumann 4.
While the insanity occurred on rink 1. West Chester met with Rhode Island in a do or die matchup for both teams. It was 1:52 in that West Chester would go up on the powerplay with a goal from Derek Hoffman as he would continue his scoring streak this weekend. From there, Rhode Island would equalize with a goal from Brendan Winne. From there, West Chester would go on to score 7 unanswered goals, create a running clock situation, and ensure their place in the loser’s final against Neumann. Derek Hoffman continued his fiery scoring pace on Championship Saturday, with 3 goals and 3 assists in the win. Final Score: West Chester 9 Rhode Island 2.
In the loser’s final, we had Neumann, after an upsetting last second loss to Farmingdale, facing off against a West Chester team who has been on a tear throughout the day. The game began as Neumann came out firing shots at West Chester’s Wittman in net, as he turned aside what seemed to be shot after shot. But, at 4:18 it was Michael Strofe who’s seem to hit a stride today putting Neumann up 1-0. Following the Strofe goal, play opened up for both teams as they traded chances at each end of the rink. Then as the 2nd period started, Neumann began to up the ante again, When Ryan Carr put away a pass from Tyler Kraft to make the game 2-0. From there, Neumann turned up the heat and West Chester just simply seemed to run out of energy. The Knights finished the 2nd period with a pair of goals from Fox, and a second from Strofe. To finish the game, Strofe, who’s currently leading the team in points this weekend, was named the first star with 3 goals and 2 assists. Final Score: Neumann 12 West Chester 1.
With that result, we will have a rematch that the whole crowd was looking forward to for the ECRHA D1 Championship between the Rams of Farmingdale and the Knights of Neumann.