Gateway skates back into competition at Latrobe
The Gateway varsity ice hockey team will end a two-week break from competition when it plays Greater Latrobe on Monday at 8:35 p.m. at Kirk S. Nevin Arena in Greensburg.
The Gators are hoping to end a mini two-game losing skid that continued with a tough 5-1 loss to Pine-Richland on Nov. 19.
“The week off gave us a chance to get regrouped,” Gateway head coach Gene Perhac said.
“We've been able to get some more system work in for our team, especially the younger players. We emphasized what we need to work on most. We've been able to watch some film and make adjustments going into Latrobe. It's been a pretty positive break.”
Gateway and Latrobe split two games last year.
The Wildcats scored a 6-0 win in the first game, but Gateway rebounded to beat Latrobe, 6-4, 17 days later.
The Wildcats are off to a strong start this season.
Latrobe is 4-1 after five games, and the team has outscored its opponents, 34-11.
The Wildcats raced past Plum, 7-3, and Franklin Regional, 14-1, in their two most recent games.
“Latrobe has a strong developmental system, and they run the same system at each level,” Perhac said.
“They are consistent every year and are always right there when you talk about the best teams in (AA).”
Forward Josh Singley is Latrobe's leading scorer, and with eight goals and eight assists, he is at the top of the points list for all of Class AA.
On the Gateway side of the ledger, senior forward Taylor Siwik leads the team with six goals.
He scored two in a 5-3 loss to North Hills on Nov. 16, and he added the team's lone goal against Pine-Richland.
Fellow senior Cam Cacolice had three goals on the season, good for second on the team.
Perhac said his team has to cut down on penalties if it is to be successful moving forward.
Gateway took seven two-minute minor penalties in the second period alone against Pine-Richand, and the Rams scored three power-play goals in that period to break open a 1-1 tie.
“Pine-Richland was a pretty good game until the second period,” Perhac said.
“It was back and forth. We just took way too many penalties. We made mistakes, and when you are in the penalty box for 14 of the 17 minutes in a period, it catches up with you.”
Gateway managed only eight shots against Pine-Richland, and the Rams tallied 60 shots.
Gators junior goaltender Tyler Perhac went the whole way in net and made 55 saves.
Gateway continues its slate on Dec. 13 with the rematch of a season-opening loss to Hampton. The Gators and the Talbots will do battle at 7:45 p.m. at Center Ice Arena in Delmont.
Michael Love is a staff writer with Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-388- 5825 or at email@example.com.