The boys hockey team from St. Joseph’s Catholic Secondary School, as the 2020 SDGAA champion, is skating today in Arnprior at EOSSAA.
The Panthers won the SD&G high school league playoff title last week in Long Sault, beating the Char-Lan Crusaders 3-1 in the final.
St. Joe’s and Char-Lan entered the March 3 tournament tied in regular-season record and points, but the Panthers got the top seed on a tie-breaking formula.
Following a scoreless first period in the championship game, the Panthers opened the scoring in the second stanza, when, with 5:26 left in the frame, Kale Lauzon found the back of the net, set up by Joshua Esfold and Ben Houle.
Char-Lan drew even in the third period, with 4:49 left on the clock, as Danny Flaro scored, assisted by Curtis St. Onge.
The Crusaders managed to survive a penalty, only to have St. Joseph’s score moments later, taking the lead for good. Adam Winter was the marksmen, taking the feed from Nolan Shane. The Panthers iced it in the dying seconds with an insurance tally from Shane.
Char-Lan advanced to the championship contest following a 6-2 semifinal win over Tagwi. Donovan Francis and St. Onge each scored twice for the winning side. The other Crusaders tallies came from Thomas Pasco and Seamus O’Connell. Assists went to Flaro (2), O’Connell, Francis, and Pasco. Warriors scoring were Nathan Gallinger and Matt Doyon, with assists from Liam Ault and Ben McAlear.
In the other semi, St. Joseph’s dispatched Catholic rival Holy Trinity 3-0.
The Panthers are seeded fourth at the six-team, one-day EOSSAA tournament.