Pittsburgh Hockey Digest

PIHL

PIHL Class-AAA Penguins Cup preview: North Allegheny vs. Peters Township

REGULAR SEASON

Oct. 16- North Allegheny defeated Peters Township 5-3 at Printscape Arena

The Tigers opened up a 4-0 lead by the 16-minute mark of the second period as Dylan Watkins, Aaron Miller, Justin Symons and Christopher Hanlon found the scoresheet early. Jeremy Anthos, Dylan McElhinny and Mark Lehman fired back for the Indians to make it 4-3 late in the third. Watkins empty-net power-play goal sealed the contest for North Allegheny.

Jan. 7 – Peters Township defeated North Allegheny 3-1 at Baierl Ice Complex

A scoreless first led to an early goal by Torrey Schwartz in the third, and the Indians headed to the third up a goal. Karl Fuchs scored at 3:08 to tie things up for the Tigers, but a goal by Schwartz and a late tally by Ryan Luppe gave Peters Township a cushion they’d not let up.

LAST WEEK

Peters Township defeated Mt. Lebanon

North Allegheny defeated Bethel Park

ODDS AND ENDS

SCORING

Peters Township finished the season No. 1 in scoring offense at 4.44 goals per game. The Indians were fourth at 3.50 GPG. Richard Karapandi and Co. led the AAA classification in team defense, only allowing 1.78 goals per game on the year. Not far behind, the Indians were in a second-place tie with Bethel Park at 2.50 GPG.

SPECIAL TEAMS

The Indians finished second in the classification with a 25.7% efficiency on the power-play, while the Tigers finished fourth at 23.8%. North Allegheny flexed their muscles on the penalty kill, finishing first with a 88.4% rating. The Indians finished third in that regard at 83.3%.

WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN

The teams are pretty even when you consider all of the factors, and when the Indians chose to ride Alex Wilbert in net, they flourished through the postseason thus far. It will be interesting to see if they can get in Karapandi’s head, as not many teams have been able to shake the all-star.

Verdict: Welcome to the main event. Buckle up, this is going to be a bumpy ride that could come down to who sticks to their game plan throughout. Both teams are built for the title, and the winner certainly will have earned the title by the time it is over. This is a straight toss-up that could go either way.

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