Quaker Valley goalie willing to take credit, blame
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There is no denying the pressure of being a goaltender in hockey.
Much like a quarterback in football or a pitcher in baseball, a goalie's play is spotlighted and is often times credited with a win or loss.
That is what Quaker Valley goalie Parker Sherry loves about the position.
“I love the fact that a game can go either way if I make a big save or not,” the junior said. “I can walk out of a game being the hero or I could miss one save by half an inch and cost us the game.
“If an offensive guy makes a mistake, no one sees it. If a defenseman does, they might. But if I make a mistake, it goes up on the scoreboard.”
Sherry has stepped up as one of the top goalies in PIHL Class A this season. He has made 180 saves and allowed allowing 13 goals — a save percentage of .930. He is allowing less than two goals a game with two shutouts.
His eight wins are the most for any goalie in Class A.
Sherry's debut season in 2012-13 couldn't have better prepared him for this season. As a sophomore, he recorded 15 wins while the Quakers went 25-1, won the Penguins Cup and reached the state title game.
“Last season prepared me for this year,” Sherry said. “We lost some important guys from that team and there is some more offense coming at me this season. My time on the ice last year got me ready to make better saves now.”
Last season, Sherry split time with Jonathon Pijar.
While he enjoyed playing and learning alongside the senior, it also fueled his competitive juices, as he wanted to get as many starts as he could.
“It is always good to have competition,” Sherry said. “It makes you want to be the best and it brings the best out of you. Coach (Kevin Quinn) tells us every practice there is always a spot to be filled and it could be yours.”
Sherry's game has been boosted this season by the talent across the ice for Quaker Valley. Jimmy Perkins is leading Class A in points with 22 goals and 12 assists while sophomore Connor Quinn is fifth with 12 goals and 13 assists.
Ryan Lottes (16 points), Cameron Peterkin (14) and Alex Quinn (12) have all helped the Quakers reach a 10-1 mark while lending support to their goaltender.
If the Quakers can keep up their high level of play across the ice, they will be looking for their third straight trip to Consol Energy Center to compete for a third straight Class A Penguins Cup.
“The junior and senior classes have been there two times so we know what it feels like,” Sherry said. “We want the underclassmen to understand the pressure of a big game like that. Then, if we an win the Pens Cup, the next focus is that state championship.
“We want show everyone last year was a tough loss but we are able to pull through.”
The Quakers return to the ice Thursday, as they travel to Serra Catholic for a 9:05 faceoff.
Nathan Smith is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at email@example.com or via Twitter @NSmith_Trib.
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