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Mustangs take care of FR, 9-3

| Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2012, 8:59 p.m.

The Plum varsity ice hockey team had no trouble with Franklin Regional on Monday, as the Mustangs came off a two-week break and put a second straight game in the win column.

The 9-3 victory over the Panthers, which put Plum at 2-4-1 on the season, featured a four-goal, two-assist night from senior Andrew Walters and the first varsity goal from freshman Zach Keller.

Junior Joe Randazzo netted his 11th and 12th goals of the season, and senior Andrew Pagano and sophomore David Stonebraker also tallied goals.

Three players — Randazzo, Walters and Stonebraker — are averaging at least a point a game.

“The locker room was one of understanding and that we knew we had to put up one win with another,” Plum head coach Dave Stonebraker said. “The kids believe in themselves. The game won't win an Oscar, but a win is a win, and we're happy with that.”

Franklin Regional scored two goals in the second period and one more in the third, but each time, Plum answered quickly with a goal of its own.

“We always want to dictate our style of play and not be at the mercy of another team's style,” coach Stonebraker said. “We were able to dictate the tempo and our style.”

Randazzo added two assists, and seniors Jordan Gable, Jimmy D'Andrea, and Zach Crawford; junior Zach Kuhn; Stonebraker; and freshman Zach Nolan each contributed an assist.

The defense limited the Panthers to 23 shots. Senior goaltender Taylor Cestra played the first period and stopped all four shots she faced, and sophomore netminder James Borriello stopped 16 shots in the second and third periods.

“Both played really well,” coach Stonebraker said. “It's nice to get James more experience.”

Plum returns to the ice Monday against undefeated Class AA newcomer Hampton at 8:30 p.m. at Ice Connection of Pittsburgh in Valencia. The Talbots are 3-0 heading into a game Thursday against Kiski Area.

“Hampton's record speaks for itself,” coach Stonebraker said. “We respect their program, but we have every intention of going down there and getting a victory. Hampton will have a tough battle on its hands.”

Michael Love is a staff writer with Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-388-5825 or at mlove@tribweb.com.

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