Penguins Cup championship previews
Penguins Cup championship previews -- all games today at Consol Energy Center
Quaker Valley vs. Mars, 1 p.m.
Records: Quaker Valley 19-1-1, Mars 19-2
Quaker Valley impact players: Doug Revak, sr., G; Ryan Dickson, jr., F; Kevin Kenny, sr., F; Jayson Lottes, sr., F
Mars impact players: Austin Heakins, jr., F; Christian Knapp, jr., G; Nick Blaney, sr., F; Joe Bender, sr., F
Notable: Quaker Valley dominated Kittanning, 7-1, in Monday's semifinals, setting up a rubber match with the Planets. The teams split their regular-season matchups; Mars won a 4-3 decision Nov. 3, and Quaker Valley took the Feb. 21 rematch, 7-0. Dickson and Kenny give the Quakers a strong one-two punch, scoring 57 and 48 points in the regular season. At 1.63, Revak had the best goals-against average of all Class A starters. ... Mars is going for its fourth consecutive Penguins Cup, a season-long goal that still is in reach after Max Master's overtime goal in Monday's semifinal against Hampton. The Planets got 23 saves from Knapp in that game, but he has split time with sophomore Alex Stepke, who also has good numbers. During the regular season, Heakins was the fourth-leading scorer in Class A, posting 64 points.
For the winner: Flyers Cup champion Bayard Rustin awaits in the Pennsylvania Cup championship at 3 p.m. Sunday at RMU's Island Sports Center.
West Allegheny vs. Erie Cathedral Prep, 3:30 p.m.
Records: West Allegheny 20-3, Erie Cathedral Prep 17-5
West Allegheny impact players: Jason Kumpfmiller, sr., G; Jonathan Levitt, sr., F; Jared Disanti, sr., F; Patrick Coburn, sr., F
Cathedral Prep impact players: Chris Coombs, sr., F; Jimmy Bufalino, jr., F; Mitch Campbell, so., D; Jacob Varo, sr., G
Notable: Seeking its first Penguins Cup, West Allegheny also is trying to bury the recent memory of an ugly, penalty-filled 5-0 loss to Cathedral Prep on Feb. 27. The Indians won the teams' first matchup, 3-1, on Oct. 31. Kumpfmiller led Class AA in regular-season wins (17), goals-against average (1.63) and save percentage (.920). Levitt paced West Allegheny with 44 points. ... Cathedral Prep is going for its first title since winning the Penguins and Pennsylvania cups in 1997. Coombs' 46 regular-season points ranked fifth in the class, and Bufalino's 43 were eighth-best. Bufalino and Campbell each notched hat tricks in Tuesday's semifinal against Chartiers Valley.
For the winner: The winner plays Flyers Cup champion Council Rock South for the state title at 5 p.m. Sunday at RMU's Island Sports Center.
Peters Township vs. Bethel Park, 6 p.m.
Records: Peters Township 17-5-3, Bethel Park 17-7-1
Peters Township impact players: Brian Baker, so., G; Cole Snyder, sr., F; Trevor Recktenwald, jr., F; Patrick Hannan, so., F
Bethel Park impact players: Alex Blum, sr., G; Derek Lesnak, so., F; Austin Jameyson, jr., D, Jacob Brown, sr., D
Notable: Bethel Park is looking for its seventh Penguins Cup. The Black Hawks had an excellent run not too long ago, winning four titles from 2000-05. Backed by strong defense and goaltending -- typical of Jim McVay-coached teams -- the Black Hawks are the PIHL's hottest team, winning their past 14 games. Blum made 25 saves against Penn-Trafford in Wednesday's semifinals as the Black Hawks topped the class's best offensive squad, 3-2. ... Peters is seeking is first Cup in Class AAA after winning four Class AA titles in a row from 2002-05. Peters split a pair of Section 1 matchups against the Black Hawks, winning the first, 2-1, in overtime but dropping the second, 5-1. Recktenwald led the Indians with 37 points and 22 goals in the regular season, and Baker was one of the area's top young goaltenders, posting a 1.77 goals-against average and .921 save percentage.
For the winner: Next up is the state title game against Flyers Cup champion La Salle at 7 p.m. Sunday at RMU's Island Sports Center.