Cats knock off Titans on to Frozen Four!!

by Coach Elliott on March 11, 2014

There were many in the hockey community who talked and wrote that the Northview Wildcats would need a pretty big upset to knock of the  St. Johns Titans in the district final this past weekend. If you looked at the records you might have agreed with them. Don’t include the players and coaches in the Northview locker-room as part of that group. Playing for just the 2nd game all season with a healthy lineup the Cats overcame an early 2 goal deficit to claim the district title for the 3rd straight year and an amazing 5th time in 9 years with a decisive 4 to 2 win on Saturday night.

     St. Johns caught an early break as the puck bounced in off a shin pad and found its way past senior goaltender David Marsh for a 1 to 0 lead just 4 minutes in. They would make it 2 to 0 just 30 seconds later as they beat Marsh over the glove side and seemed to have the Cats on the ropes. Marsh would stand tall the rest of the way. Playing perhaps his finest game of his career he shut down the Titans offense and give his team a chance at victory. He stopped the final 19 shots he faced, including 11 in a dazzling 2nd period, as the Cats mounted their comeback. Caleb Rau scored on a beautiful rush early on in the 2nd to close the game to 2 to 1 after 2 periods of play.  The Titans started the 3rd period on a powerplay and looked to push the lead back to 2. Marsh once again denied several quality scoring opportunities as his defensive partners cleared the slot. Seconds after the penalty expired junior winger Zack “greasball” Galecki beat Titans net minder Mike Barret on a breakaway to tie the game at 2 and send the Northview faithful into hysteria!!  The Cats pushed the tempo even more as they had the Johnnies on their heels. Senior Jacob Koback would make his presence felt. His goal with 6:39 left in the final period gave the Cats their 1st lead. St. Johns called a timeout to regroup however seconds later they would be called for interference and put the Cats on the powerplay. Jake would provide the final nail in the coffin just 17 seconds later at the 6 minute mark. Picking up a clean faceoff win by his younger brother Josh, he fired a puck in for a 4 to 2 lead. The Titans tried to mount a late comeback, but Marsh stopped a rush from Ian Rapp and another shot from longtime teammate Dominic Horvath and the Cats and their students erupted in victory as the final seconds ticked off the clock!!!!

     To some the Cats had completed the upset, to them they did what was expected and what they had prepared to do.  The win sends the Cats back to the state frozen four. They will take on St. Charles, winner of the Columbus bracket,  on Friday Afternoon @ 1;00 pm at Nationwide Arena in Columbus. Tickets are available at the school and at the Nationwide box office.

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