Cherry Hill East used strong defense and solid goaltending to defeat HLV 2-1 and win the Tier II championship once again. This is the third year in a row for the Cougars. Most of the game was tight checking and strong defense on both sides as neither wanted to make a mistake. Dylan Altomonte scored six minutes into the game to give Cherry Hill a 1-0 lead as his shot from the point through a screen found the net. That lead lasted less than two minutes as HLV would respond with a goal by Pierce Wickenden as he would be planted on the doorstep and put home a rebound of a shot by Tyler Grey to tie the game at 1-1.
Sean McKenna would score the game winner at the five minute mark of the second period, Tommy Papa broke down the right side and got in tight to create a scoring opportunity and McKenna was there to put home the rebound and a 2-1 lead. Luke Martini made his biggest save of the game late in the second period, with Cherry Hill on the power play, Grey had a short-handed breakaway, and Martini stoned him to keep it 2-1 after two. The Cougars played strong defense in front of Martini and HLV could only manage seven shots in the third period. As Coach Busler said after the game, “Despite each year graduating numerous seniors the players stick to the game plan and play our system and that has led to our success, it’s a total team effort.” Who could argue with that?
Notes: Congratulations to Coach Busler, Coach Amon and the entire Cougar organization.