The Northeast Generals scored three, first period goals and held on to beat the visiting Titans 4 – 2 to force game five of the East Division semi-finals.
The roles were reversed from Friday night’s game. This time the Generals’ Matt Boczar scored just fifty-three seconds into the game. After Northeast won the draw deep inside their own zone, the puck went back to Douglas Friberg who skated through the slot and passed it up to a breaking Kyle Schroeder down the near side boards. As Schroeder gained the line, he circled behind the Titans net and made a centering pass out front to Boczar in the slot and Boczar wristed the puck past Red Buckets goalie Andrew Takacs to give the Generals a 1 – 0 lead.
Northeast doubled their lead with 7:47 left in the first after Takacs was stripped of the puck behind his own goal line. As the Titans powerplay was ending, Northeast dumped the puck from their zone all the way to the other end of the rink. As Takacs went to play the puck near the far side boards, he was stripped of it by Paul Minnehan who passed it out to Evan Orr in the slot. As Takacs tried to get back to the net, he fell, and Orr shot the biscuit into the empty net to make it a 2 – 0 game.
Less than a minute later, Schroeder gave the General a three-goal lead. Looking for a line change, the Generals dumped the puck deep into the Titans zone where it was picked up by Owen Luik by his own far side corner. Luik started to skate towards the back of his net and he went to pass it to Anthony Mollica in the corner but the puck bounced off Mollica’s skates and landed at the bottom of the faceoff circle where it was picked up by Sixten Jennersjö. Jennersjö made a backhand pass to Schroeder who took a shot that beat Takacs short side for Schroeder’s first goal of the playoffs.
With 2:07 remaining in the opening period, Boczar was called for head contact to give the Titans a five-minute powerplay. Entering the second period down by three and with three minutes remaining on the man advantage, Levente Keresztes put the Titans on the board.
Billy Feczko picked up the loose puck at center ice and passed it up to a breaking Stephen Willey down the near side boards. As Willey gained the line, he made a cross-ice pass to Keresztes who one-timed it past Generals goalie Cullen DeYoung to make it a 3 – 1 game.
A minute later Marcus Sang brought the Titans within one. As the five-minute power play had just expired, Blake Farrell picked up the loose puck off of a DeYoung save at the near side half wall. Farrell send a pass back to David Posma at the point, and Posma took a shot that was deflected by Sang out front and past DeYoung to make it a 3 – 2 game.
The Titans had their chances to tie the game throughout the remainder of the second and the third but DeYoung was able to keep them at bay. Northeast’s Jared Scott scored an empty net goal with thirty-three seconds remaining in the game to close out the scoring and make it 4 – 2.
Takacs stopped 31 of 34 shots while DeYoung turned aside 35 of 37. Click here for the box score.
The fifth and deciding game will be held tonight at the Middletown Sports Complex at 7:00PM.