Salmon River Central exacted some postseason revenge by rallying to down Section 6 champion Starpoint, 4-3, while the first banner season in a decade for Potsdam Central ended in a 6-1 loss to Section 1 champion Clarkstown in the quarterfinals of the state boys hockey playoffs Saturday.
Salmon River 4, Starpoint 3
In what turned out to be an extraordinary reversal from last year’s first-round matchup between the two Division II teams in Fort Covington that saw the Spartans rally from two goals down in the third period to win in the second overtime, the Shamrocks overcame a 2-0 hole to start the final frame. Salmon River then scored the final two goals in the last six minutes to complete its redemption at HarborCenter in Buffalo.
The Shamrocks (21-2) earned their first trip to the state semifinals since 2005 and are now slated to make their first appearance in the state championships since the venue was moved from Utica to Buffalo after the 2015 finals.
The will return to HarborCenter next weekend to take on the winner of the quarterfinal game between Section 3 champion Skaneateles and Section 5 champion Webster-Schroeder that was slated for later Saturday evening in the second of the two semifinals set for next Saturday that is to start at 11:20 a.m. The other semifinal starts at 9 a.m.
In the win over Starpoint (18-6), the Shamrocks found themselves trailing 2-0 after giving up late goals in each of the first two periods. Mike Merrifield opened the scoring with 3:23 left in the first assisted by Austin Bush and Reed Marriner.
The same trio produced the second goal with 1:53 left in the middle frame with Bush converting from Merrifield and Marriner.
The Shamrocks drew a late penalty to close the second period and quickly converted to start the third when senior Caiden Cartier fired home a low shot from the point for a power play marker just 16 seconds in. Classmates Kade Cook and Luke Miller earned assists.
Senior Evan Collette then tied the game 29 seconds later off from Miller, and the teams remained deadlocked until the 9:47 mark when the Spartans regained the lead on a goal by William Mainstone from Justin Bull.
Salmon River quickly countered with its second equalizer of the period when Cook found the back of the net after taking an assist from Chase Lewis at 11:09.
Starpoint then took only its second penalty of the game with 3:12 remaining and the Shamrocks once again took advantage as Collette, the reigning Section 10 Division II MVP and leading scorer, took a pass from Miller and wristed it home with 1:25 left.
Senior goalie Rick Chatland made 33 saves.
Clarkstown 6, Potsdam 1
In a Division I matchup at Monsey, Clarkstown broke the game open with four goals, including a pair of power-play markers, in the second period before outscoring the Sandstoners 2-1 in the third for the win.
The duo of Jason Rothstein and Nick Romeo anchored the winning offense, with Rothstein notching three goals and an assist and Romeo generating two goals and an assist.
Andrew Fenninger added a goal and two helpers while goalie AJ Levy turned aside 29 shots he faced.
After a scoreless first period, Clarkstown opened the scoring when Rothstein finished off a play set up by Romeo and Sam Sobler (three assists). A Potsdam player was called for a penalty on the goal and just over a minute later, Fenninger made it 2-0 with a power-play goal set up by Romeo and Ty Hague. Rothstein netted the third goal of the period at the 6:36 mark before Chase Chalfin closed out the scoring burst at 10:23.
The Sandstoners spoiled Romeo’s bid for the shutout when senior Ryan Rutley converted on a play from junior John Duffy and sophomore Brodie Hughes at 5:45.
Sophomore Chase Rozler made 38 saves as the Sandstoners closed out the season at 12-11 after capturing their first sectional title since 2011. They also earned a share of the Northern Athletic Conference Division I regular-season title with the Massena Red Raiders — their first league banner since 2013.
Division II Quarterfinals
Salmon River 4, Starpoint 3
Salmon River 0 0 - 4 - 4
Starpoint 1 1 1 - 3
First period: 1. Sta, Merrifield (Bush, Marriner), 13:37.
Second period: 2. Sta, Bush (Merrifield, Marriner), 15:07.
Third period: 3. Sal, Cartier (K. Cook, Miller), ppg, :16; 4. Sal, Collette (Miller), :45; 5. Sta, Mainstone (Bull), 9:47; 6. Sal, K. Cook (Lewis), 11:09; 7. Sal, Collette (Miller), ppg, 15:35.
Goalies: Chatland (SR) 29 saves; Gareau (St) 22.
Records: Salmon River (21-2); Starpoint (18-6).
Division I Quarterfinals
At Sport-O-Rama Rink
Clarkstown 6, Potsdam 1
Potsdam 0 0 1 - 1
Clarkstown 0 4 2 - 6
Second period: 1. Cla, Rothstein (N. Romeo, Sobler), 2:49; 2. Cl, Fenninger (N. Romeo, Hague), ppg, 3:50; 3. Cla, Rothstein (Fenninger), 6:36; 4. Cla, Chalfin (Sobler, Fenninger), ppg, 10:23.
Third period: 5. Cla, N. Romeo (Rothstein), :45; 6. Pot, Rutley (Hughes, Duffy), 5:24; 7. Cla, Rothstein (Sobler), 12:06.
Goalies: Rozler (P) 38 saves; Levy (C) 29.
Records: Potsdam (12-11); Clarkstown (21-3).
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