NEVILLE TWP., Pa — Jake Fetzer scored at 2:34 of the overtime periods as the Carrick Cougars completed the comeback in dramatic fashion, defeating the Neshannock Lancers 5-4 Monday at RMU Island Sports Center.
Neshannock opened up a two-goal lead at 9:17 of the third period when Terence Rice tapped one past Carrick starter Sean Dugan, but it was short-lived as, Fetzer cut the Lancers’ lead to one at 11:17 of the final period and Ian Norkevicus’ flair for the dramatic tied the game on a set face-off play with 14 seconds remaining.
Fetzer took care of it from there, netting the overtime winner to send Carrick to the PIHL Class-B championship game.
Hunter Deal opened up the scoring for the Lancers, beating Sean Dugan at 3:59 of the first period. Carrick wasn’t without chances as the Cougars pelted Riley Mastowski with 22 shots but ultimately unable to beat the sophomore netminder in the opening frame.
Opportunity arose for Neshannock to extend the lead in the second, turning two Carrick mis-plays into goals by Santino Multari and Deal. Deal’s second was a shorthanded breakaway goal that disrupted the Cougars’ workflow, causing Chris Serakowski to fire his timeout.
The Cougars came alive, as Tyson Feldman used a set play on a faceoff to fire a shot through Mastowski’s five hole, cutting the Neshannock lead to two on the power play.
The Lancers followed up a Multari penalty with a power-play, but a misplay led to Mikey Farkal’s short-handed breakaway goal that brought the contest back within one.
THEY SAID IT
The Cougars return to the Class-B championship game for the first time since 2017 (it was then called Division 2), when Carrick dropped an overtime contest to the Meadville Bulldogs.
Awaiting the Cougars are the rival Ringgold Rams, who the Cougars defeated 3-2 in overtime on Feb 24. Faceoff is scheduled for Tuesday, March 17 at 8:30 p.m. at UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex in Cranberry Township.