An amazing turn-around weekend was iced Sunday morning with a shootout victory over SpaceCoast. They picked a great weekend to come alive, playing in front of countless college scouts. In the words of one NCAA scout, the Potomac Patriots “really put there program on the map this weekend.”
The EJHL South squad started the 2012 EJHL South Fall Showcase Friday evening against the Florida Eels. They would fall behind 1-0 after the first half, but second half goals from Matt Wipper, Nathan Marks, and Alex Grose would give the Pats a 3-1 win. Andrew Turgeon added two assists and Temur Hannan, Joe Pouliot, and Cameron Smith would each add one assist. Dustyn Moyer got the win and was solid in net.
In the Patriots 2-1 win over Palm Beach the Patriots would once again fall behind 1-0, but a power-play goal from Grayson Runey would tie the game. Shortly after Andrew Turgeon would snipe one top left corner over the goalie’s blocker from just inside the blue line for the game winning goal. Andreas Bagfeldt, Matt Wipper, and Andrew Turgeon would add assists. Dustyn Moyer notched win number two on the weekend with 16 saves.
Saturday evening the Patriots would pump 6 goals past the Tampa Bay Bolts’ netminder en route to a 6-2 victory. Five different goal scorers (Smith-2, Reece, Turgeon, Marks, and Piccirilli) would highlight the Patriots balanced offensive attack. Assists in the game were provided by Pouliot-2, Wipper-2, Rempe, Reece, Marks, Turgeon, and Grose. The goal by Mike Piccirilli was the first of his junior career and well deserved - “Mike is an outstanding young man. He’s found his role on this team and every game he gets better,” remarked GM RJ Zeigler. Dustyn Moyer would stop 27 shots in the victory to continue his stellar weekend.
The highlight of the weekend would no doubt be a shootout win versus SpaceCoast Sunday morning. The Patriots would blow a two goal lead late then dominate overtime to take the momentum into the shootout. Regulation time goals were scored by Evan Sterling, Andrew Turgeon, and Travis Reece. Kevin McDonald, Nathan Marks, and Temur Hannan would add assists. Cameron Smith would start the shootout with a slick move to his right and a quick shot glove side to put the Pats up 1-0. The SpaceCoast shooter tried to go five-hole on Dustyn Moyer but was denied as Moyer played it perfectly. Travis Reece, who scored a shorthanded breakaway goal earlier in the game with a deke forehand to backhand, would mix it up and deke to his forehand to put it past the SpaceCoast goalie for a 2-0 Pats lead. SpaceCoast would get lucky on their second shot as it squeaked past Moyer who again played the puck perfectly, but had it find the seven-hole. Matt Wipper would shoot third for the Patriots and with the game on his stick would come in and bury a quick snap shot stick side to seal the victory and the 8th point of the weekend for the Patriots. “Before I shot Coach (Zeigler) and I talked and were exactly on the same page. We’re both lefty and in practice we’ve talked about how tough it is for goalies to stop shots about a foot and half off the ice stick side. It worked perfectly,” explained Matt Wipper.
The Patriots will now have a much needed weekend off before heading to Atlanta for two tough games. “The road to the top of this league will no doubt go through Atlanta,” remarked Coach Zeigler, “if we want to prove that our young team can compete with anyone then we need to take some points from Atlanta. It will be tough to say the least, but we’re ready.”