Northeast’s netminder Cullen DeYoung stopped 52 of 53 shots to lead the visiting Generals to a 4 – 1 win over the Titans to take a 1 – 0 lead in this best-of-five East Division semi-finals series.
Blake Farrell was called for roughing with 6:57 remaining in the first period to put the Generals on the powerplay. While pressuring in the offensive zone, and Farrell’s penalty just expiring, Northeast’s Jared Scott gave the Generals a 1 -0 lead. After Northeast’s Sixten Jennersjö took a wrist shot down low that hit the crossbar, the deep rebound came out to Alexander Krause at the far side point. Krause passed the biscuit down to Jackson McCarthy at the half wall. As McCarthy went towards the net, he made a centering pass out front that was redirected by Scott and past Titans goaltender Andrew Takacs for the first goal of this playoff series.
At 1:33 into the second period, Northeast’s Ryan Gordon was called for cross-checking to give the man advantage. Twenty-three seconds later the Generals doubled their lead. After Brendan Dumas took a shot that was blocked by DeYoung, Dumas was able to pick up the loose puck at the far side half wall. Dumas went to pass it to Nick Ring in the slot but it was intercepted by Northeast’s Brent Keefer. Keefer exploded down the ice and into the offensive zone. As Keefer gained the line on a two-on-one, he took wrist shot from the top of the slot that went off the near side post and beat Takacs short side to make it a 2 – 0 game.
While still on the man advantage from the Gordon penalty, the Titans were able to cut their deficit in half with eleven seconds remaining in the powerplay. After DeYoung made a save, the loose puck went to the near side corner where it was picked up by Ryan Coughlin. The Charlotte, NC native passed the biscuit to David Posma at the top of the faceoff circle and Posma took a wrist shot that founds its way through a screen and past DeYoung to make it 2 – 1.
The Generals regained their two-goal lead midway through the second period on David Andreychuk’s first goal of the game. After Andreychuck picked up the loose puck along the near side boards at center ice, he started to cut towards the middle of the ice as he gained the line. As Andreychuck reached the top of the slot, he took a quick wrist shot that handcuffed Takacs and beat the Titans goalie glove side.
Andreychuk scored his second goal of the game at 6:23 into the final period after intercepting Takacs’ outlet pass at the top of the slot and depositing the biscuit into the empty net to make it 4 – 1 and close out the scoring.
Takacs stopped 29 of 33 shots to take the loss. Click here for the box score.
Game two of this best-of-five East Division semi-final series will be held tonight at 7:00PM at the Middletown Sports Complex.