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Little Flyers Youth: 2008 Offense Catches Fire to Clinch League Playoff Position

02/14/2020, 3:45pm EST
By AL

2005s and 16 National Earn Playoff Births

Aston, PA –

16U National  -  The Philadelphia Little Flyers 16U National team wrapped up AYHL play this past weekend with a road game on Saturday against the New Jersey Titans Premier team.  The Titans jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the first period with an even strength goal, while outshooting the Little Flyers.  New Jersey’s power play was the difference in the second period, scoring two goals with the man advantage in under two minutes to go up 3-0.  Luke Riley scored the Little Flyers lone goal of the game in the second, an even strength goal that was assisted by Andrew Henry and Michael Guarracino.  The Titans regained their three goal advantage in the final minutes of the period with two even strength goals.  The third period saw the Titans add three more goals to win by a final score of 8-1.  In goal for the Little Flyers, Matt Lynch and Michael Manzi combined to make 49 saves against the Titans.

Sunday, the Little Flyers were back on home ice for their final AYHL regular season game of the 2019-20 season.  This game had its fair share of penalties and the game would come down to special teams.  After a scoreless first period, The CT Chiefs capitalized on a power play opportunity less than a minute into the second period.  With less than two minutes to play in the second and the Little Flyers on the power play, the Chiefs scored a shorthanded goal to take a two goal lead into the final period.  The Little Flyers had their chances in the third but could not solve the Chiefs goaltender and lost the game by a final score of 3-0 when the Chiefs added an empty netter with under a minute to play.  Michael Manzi held the Little Flyers in the game all day, making 38 saves. 

16U American -  The 16U American Little Flyer hit the road on Wednesday night for a league matchup against the Mercer Chiefs.  Jordan Pakuris’ power play goal opened the scoring in the game for the Little Flyers, taking the lead 2:35 into the game.  The Pakuris power play tally was set up by Santino Capone and Andre Amezquita.  Mercer answered back less than a minute later to tie the game at 1-1.  Things would remain the same until Evan Golato lit the lamp at the 11:51 mark of the second period with an even strength goal, Jordan Fabian and Jeremy Durr were credited with assists on the eventual game winner.  AJ Golden and the defense took care of the rest, with Golden making 19 saves in net and picking up the win.  The Little Flyers outshot Mercer 52-20 in the game.

In their final AYHL game of the season, the Little Flyers hosted the North Jersey Avalanche.  The two teams battled through a scoreless first period, even though the Avalanche held a distinct advantage in the shots category.  Less than a minute into the second period, North Jersey was able to take the lead with an even strength goal.  Several minutes later, the Avalanche were awarded a penalty shot which they scored on to take a 2-0 lead.  That is all the Avalanche would need offensively as the Little Flyers were never able to get the offense going in the Avalanche zone.  For the Little Flyers, AJ Golden made 29 saves while John Plumley made 11 saves. 

Bantam 2005  - In their final AYHL regular season game, the Little Flyers Bantam 2005 team took down the Long Island Gulls National team in a high scoring affair.  The Little Flyers dominated the first period offensively.  Kevin Hudak started the first period scoring with an unassisted even strength goal.  Off of the ensuing faceoff, Brody Bess set up Jack Wolf to take an early 2-0 Little Flyers lead.  The Little Flyers added two more goals in the final minutes of the first period to take a 4-0 lead into the second period.  First, Owen Ozer tallied a goal with Dante Passio collecting the assist, followed by a Nicholas Dignazio goal with helpers coming from Eric McHale and Matt Kratchwell.  Long Island put a goal on the scoreboard less than a minute into the second period to cut into the Little Flyers lead.  Jack Wolf answered back for Philadelphia recording his second goal of the game with Joe Samango being credited with the assist.  The Gulls made it a three goal game once again at the 4:43 mark of the second but Nick Fiore quickly regained the Little Flyers four goal lead with an unassisted goal.  The Gulls closed their deficit early in the third period scoring twice in a one minute span, but the Little Flyers offense was too strong in this game as Eric McHale, Kevin Hudak and Brody Bess all added goals in the middle of the third period to take this game by a final score of 9-5.  Matt Kratchwell picked up his second assist of the game on McHale’s goal, then McHale and Danny White combined to set up Hudak for his second goal of the game.  The Brody Bess was the exclamation point on the scoreboard that put the game out of reach for the Little Flyers with Joe Samango and Jack Wolf combining to set up Wolf for the dagger.  Christian Amato made 19 saves for the Little Flyers in the game and picked up the win.  The 9-5 victory solidified the Little Flyers playoff position for the AYHL playoffs.

Bantam 2006 -  It was a busy weekend for the 2006 Little Flyers as they began the weekend on the road for a two game Saturday series with the CT Chiefs.  Game one got off to a quick start as the Chiefs jumped out to a 1-0 lead just nine seconds into the game.  The Little Flyers were quick to respond as John Mullen and Spencer Parish set up Alex Fusaro for the tying goal five seconds after falling behind.  Quickly after Fusaro tied the game, CT regained the lead with an even strength goal.  In the final moments of the first period, The Chiefs added to their lead to take a 3-1 lead into the second.  The Chiefs offense got hot in the second period, scoring a Short Handed, Power Play and Even Strength goal.  Down 6-1, Alex Fusaro notched his second goal of the game, this time a shorthanded score that was set up by Grayson Esposito.  In the third period, Esposito pulled the Little Flyers closer, scoring twice in a three minute span.  First it was Alex Fusaro and Shane Maleno with the helpers to Esposito for his first of the game, then Jake Robinson and John Mullen combined to get the puck to Esposito again.  The Little Flyers comeback came up short as they were unable to catch the Chiefs in game one.  Vincent Berretta made 33 saves in the game for Philadelphia. 

Alex Fusaro kept his scoring ways in game two, scoring a Power Play goal just 2:53 into game two to give the Little Flyers an early 1-0 lead, the Fusaro Power Play goal was assisted by Corrado Ditoro.  After CT tied the game midway through the period, Shane Maleno took the lead back for the visiting Little Flyers, combining with Spencer Parish for the go ahead goal.  The lead was short lived as the Chiefs tallied back-to-back Power Play goals to take the lead.  In the second period, a Short Handed Chiefs goal gave them a two goal lead 2:36 into the middle frame.  Trailing 5-2 in the third, Grayson Esposito set up Spencer Parish for the Little Flyers second power play goal of the game with under five minutes left to play.  The Little Flyers comeback effort fell short as they fell by a final score of 6-3. 

On Sunday, the Little Flyers were back on home ice where they caught fire offensively.  Alex Fusaro and Shane Maleno scored first period goals for the Little Flyers but they found themselves trailing 4-2 after the first period.  The offense came alive in the second period for Philadelphia, Nathan DeLorme and Grayson Esposito dominated the game on the scoreboard.  DeLorme set up Esposito twice for goals in the first minute of the period to tie the game at 4-4.  Esposito completed the natural hat trick at the 9:08 mark of the second with Alex Fusaro picking up the primary assist and DeLorme collected his 4th assist of the game.  In the final minute of the period, it was DeLorme’s turn to light the lamp with a power play goal that was assisted by Fusaro.  As the third period began, it was DeLorme’s turn to take over with a natural hat trick of his own.  It was Alex Fusaro once again that set up DeLorme’s second goal of the game 1:22 into the third.  DeLorme quickly followed up off the ensuing face off, taking the puck down to the New Jersey Titans end of the ice to notch an unassisted goal and complete the hat trick.  Devin Schaeffer capped the Little Flyers scoring with an even strength goal that DeLorme collected an assist on to finish the game with an 8 point performance.  Vincent Berretta picked up the win in net for the Little Flyers with 25 saves. 

PeeWee 2007 -  On Saturday, the Little Flyers hosted the Washington Little Capitals team.  The Capitals scored the only two goals of the first period, both coming at even strength.  Washington added to their lead in the second to hold a 3-0 lead over the Little Flyers.  Unable to capitalize on some good scoring chances down the stretch, the Little Flyers fell by a final score of 3-0.  Jacob Aranda was solid in net for the Little Flyers all game long, making 22 saves.

On Sunday, the Little Flyers traveled to New Jersey for a game against the Mercer Chiefs National team.  Jason Beaman had his hand on both Little Flyers goals scored in the game.  First Beaman set up Thaddeus Raynish for a third period even strength goal, then three minutes later, Beaman scored a power play goal that was set up by James Happas.  Davis Fairbanks was busy for the Little Flyers in goal all day, making 39 saves.

PeeWee 2008 – It was a big weekend for the Little Flyers 2008 team, as finishing in first place in the American conference meant a trip to the playoffs for Coach Grant and the team.  Game one of a three game weekend was the toughest challenge as the Little Flyers hosted the Valley Forge Minutemen National team.  Jack Torr got the Little Flyers going early, scoring an unassisted goal just 42 seconds into the game.  Valley Forge responded with two goals in the first to take a 2-1 lead.  The Minutemen added padded their lead in the second period with two more even strength goals to hold a three goal advantage in the third.  Torr cut into the lead with his second goal of the game 9:37 into the game but that’s as close as the Little Flyers would come as they fell by a final score of 4-2.  Paige Faith made 24 saves for Philadelphia in the game.

Needing to take home the final four points of the weekend for their playoff run, the Little Flyers met the challenge in a big way, scoring eight Power Play goals in the game.  Anton Stackow scored back-to-back first period goals to get the offense going, Torr picked up the primary assist on the second Stackow goal.  Sam Flood and Michael Gravinese closed out the first period with power play goals coming just forty second apart, Aiden Delfin and Jack Torr were credited with assists on the power play goals.  In the second period, the Little Flyers Power Play onslaught continued with Nash Grant, Sam Flood and Jesse Xiong all scoring with the man advantage.  Stackow, Jackson Alcott, Adam Charrafi and Michael Gravinese all picked up second period assists.  The Little Flyers led 10-1 heading into the third.  The third period was more of the same for the Little Flyers as Nash Grant completed the hat trick and Lucas Sutton, Connor Nattress and Adam Charrafi all scored goals in the period.  Anthony Haag and the defense gave the Titans no opportunity to get back into the game with Haag making 16 saves in the game on the way to a 15-3 win.

The offense remained hot for Philadelphia in the second game against the Titans, this time all of the Little Flyers scoring was done at even strength.  Michael Gravinese led the way offensively, scoring four goals in the game.  Jack Torr (1G, 2A), Sam Flood (2G, 1A), Anton Stackow (2G, 2A), Paxton Hoishik (1G, 3A) and Aiden Delfin (1G, 1A) all had multi point games for the Little Flyers in an 11-2 win to seal their spot in the AYHL playoffs.  Anthony Haag and Page Faith split time in net for the Little Flyers with Haag making 5 saves while Faith made 11 in the victory.

Squirt 2010 – In their final AYHL game of the regular season, the Little Flyers traveled to Wilkes Barre for a game against the Jr. Knights.  Wilkes Barre took a 1-0 lead less than a minute into the game but that didn’t faze the Little Flyers as they would battle back all game back and forth with the Knights.  The home team added two more first period goals to take a commanding 3-0 lead with five minutes left in the first.  Pete Esposito got the Little Flyers on the scoreboard with help from Jeremy Raughley.  A three goal second period by the Little Flyers got them right back in the game.  Luke Hartman’s power play goal temporarily cut the Knights lead to one, Matthew DeNucci collected the only assist on the Hartman goal.  Wilkes Barre answered right back to regain their three goal cushion, but the Little Flyers wouldn’t go away as Chase Bell scored an even strength unassisted goal to cut the deficit to two.  Marcus Berlansky struck next for Philadelphia to bring the Little Flyers to within one; DeNucci notched his second point of the game with the only assist on the Berlansky goal.  The Knight would score the next two goals in the game to hold a 6-4 lead with ten minutes left to play.  Luke Hartman’s second goal of the game came at the 6:19 mark of the third period to get the Little Flyers to within one,  Berlansky and DeNucci were credited with assists on the goal.  With time winding down in the period, it would be Matthew DeNucci who completed the Little Flyers comeback, scoring a power play goal with help from Michael Siddons.  The game would end in a 6-6 tie,  Noah Russo had a busy day, making 31 saves in the game. 

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