Worcester, Mass -- The Philadelphia Little Flyers EHL Premier team traveled to Worcester Massachusetts this past weekend for the final Premier showcase of the season. The team went into the weekend shorthanded, missing some key team contributors due to the flu and injury.
In Game one, the Little Flyers looked to shake the bus legs off early against one of the top teams in the Northern Conference, the New England Wolves. In the two 25 minute half format, the Little Flyers fell behind midway through the first period with the Wolves scoring twice in a two minute span. Newly named Assistant Shane Green got the Little Flyers on the scoreboard with an even strength goal that was shot from the point. New England answered back, this time taking a three goal lead by scoring twice in a minute and a half span. Green’s defensive partner, Sebastian Rominiecki would get the Little Flyers back to within two with a goal of his own that was assisted by Nicholas Bouchard. Little Flyers Captain, Luke Headman got his team to within one, taking a feed from Asa Wilson for a second half goal to make the score 4-3. The Wolves regained their three goal lead midway through the second half and wouldn’t let the lead go, defeating the Little Flyers by a final score of 6-3. The Little Flyers had their scoring chances, outshooting the Wolves 39-35. Jacob George made 29 saves in the game for Philadelphia.
Several hours later, the Little Flyers were back at it, this time against the team that sat atop the EHL Premier Power Ranking, the New Hampshire Avalanche. Philadelphia came out aggressive in this game, pressuring the Avalanche in all aspects of the game which led to the first goal of the game. The forechecking by the line of Jonathan Rineer, Tyler Ruppert and Patrick Price created a turnover in the Avalanche zone which led to Rineer setting up Price for a shot from the slot which ended up in the back of the net to give the Little Flyers a 1-0 lead. With less than three minutes left in the first half, the trio of Ruppert, Price and Rineer would strike again, this time Price and Rineer picked off the puck to send Ruppert all alone with the Avalanche goaltender, Ruppert finished the play netting his 10th goal of the season. Tyler Cassidy was lights out for the Little Flyers in net, making 14 first half saves.
Out of the intermission, Kelly Stroik put the Little Flyers up 3-0 less than a minute into the second half. Following a rush by Jake Reifer, Stroik hustled into the Avalanche zone to pick up a loose puck at the side of the Avs net to give the Little Flyers their largest lead of the day. Cassidy and the defense shut down the Avalanche for most of the second half, limiting prime scoring chances. The potent Avalanche offense got going late in the game, scoring two goals just twenty nine seconds apart to cut the Little Flyers lead to one. Cassidy carried the Little Flyers down the stretch, making several huge saves to preserve the 3-2 win over the league’s top ranked team.
In the final game of the showcase, the Little Flyers faced off against the Valley Jr. Warriors. Tyler Ruppert got the Little Flyers offense going early, scoring 3:49 into the first half, Sebastian Rominiecki assisted on the play. The Little Flyers found themselves short handed four times in the first and leaned on Jacob George to make 14 first half saves to keep the Jr. Warriors off the scoreboard. Jake Reifer doubled the Little Flyers lead late in the first half with Rominiecki picking up his second primary assist of the game. Valley made the game interesting by scoring the first goal of the second to cut the Little Flyers lead to one, but Kelly Stroik answered back several minutes later to regain the Little Flyers two goal advantage. Stroik’s second goal of the weekend was assisted by Rominiecki and Reifer. Less than a minute later, Little Flyers veteran Nicholas Bouchard scored his 7th goal of the season to give the Little Flyers their largest lead of the day, Jake Reifer collected his third point in the game with the assist on Bouchard’s goal. The Little Flyers maintained the three goal lead throughout the remainder of the game to win by a final score of 4-1. Jacob George picked up his first win of the season in net with the Little Flyers who finished the showcase with a 2-1 record.
Rominiecki Named Defenseman of the Week
On Tuesday, the Eastern Hockey League named Sebastian Rominiecki the Warrior Hockey Defenseman of the Week in the Premier league. Rominiecki collected four points in the Little Flyers two win weekend with a goal in game one against the New England Wolves and a three assist performance against the Valley Jr. Warriors. Rominiecki now has 16 points on the season, surpassing his total of 11 all of last season. The Little Flyers now move onto a big Mid-Atlantic Conference matchup with the New Jersey 87s on home ice at IceWorks Skating Complex on Saturday between the Conference’s top two teams.