Quaker Valley claims second state hockey championship
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By the time Bayard Rustin took a 1-0 lead over Quaker Valley just 30 seconds into Sunday's Class A Pennsylvania Cup Final, Quakers coach Kevin Quinn had his scouting report.
From that point on, the Quakers put that knowledge to good use.
Four different Quaker Valley players scored goals, and the Quakers clamped down on Bayard Rustin en route to a 4-1 victory in the state championship at the Robert Morris Island Sports Center.
Kevin Kenny, Clayton Bouchard, Ryan Lottes and Otto Schaefer scored for the Quakers (21-1-1), who quickly fell behind the Flyers Cup champion from West Chester with Jeff Nelson's goal just 30 seconds in.
Nonetheless, Quaker Valley, playing an unfamiliar opponent just 24 hours after defeating Mars for the Penguins Cup on Saturday, adjusted its defense accordingly.
"We've got a good strategy to stop teams, and we've proven against Mars and Kittanning that we can do that," Quinn said. "But 'intel' is important. Scouting is important is in hockey. You have to know what you're up against, and then the kids have to execute, which they did."
The Quakers killed six penalties and held Rustin (15-3-2) to 17 shots. Senior goalie Doug Revak stopped 16 of them and said the one puck that slipped by provided something of a calming effect.
"It settled us into the game," Revak said. "I think we realized that we need to calm down and stay focused and get back going to our game, and I think after that we really shut them down."
Quaker Valley threw 25 shots at Rustin goalie Zach Sheriko. Kenny evened the score at the 12:47 mark of the first with a glove-side goal from the left circle, then five minutes into the second period Bouchard went five-hole on Sheriko after Ryan Dickson skated the puck through the goal mouth.
"I just wanted to get to the net because I saw Luke (O'Neill) was going on the other side for a rebound," Bouchard said. "Unbelievably, it went through his five-hole. It was pretty lucky, but it was a real game-changer, I think, to get the momentum back."
Lottes scored at the 12:49 mark of the third, and Schaefer chipped in a power-play goal with 18 seconds left in the game. Bouchard also had an assist, and Jayson Lottes had two helpers to lift Quaker Valley to its second state title and first since 2006.
"I think Quaker Valley had a great game plan," said Rustin coach Nick Russo. "They didn't get to see us all year. We didn't get to see them. I really wanted to get off to that good start, but they just ground us down. We took some bad penalties and didn't capitalize on the opportunities we had on the power play. It was very uncharacteristic of us, but kudos to Quaker Valley."
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