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HOCKEY: Brother Rice explodes in 2nd period to take out St. Mary's WITH VIDEO

OAK PARK — In its first game back from Christmas break, Birmingham Brother Rice was hoping to start off the New Year with a win, and continue its run back to the state finals.

On the other hand, Orchard Lake St. Mary’s was hoping to right the ship after the New Year. That was not the case on Saturday night.

Brother Rice (10-0-2) rode a five-goal second period that jumpstarted its 7-4 win over the Eaglets.

Brother Rice head coach Lou Schmidt knew going into he game that he’d get St. Mary’s best, but the key to the season up to this point has been his team’s tendency to feed off its success, which was key in the second period.

“We had (St. Mary’s) pinned down in their own zone, and we were getting a lot of shots,” Schmidt said. “We just wanted to execute and come out compete on every single shift. And that’s what our boys did.”

After the Eaglets (7-4-1) jumped out to a 1-0 lead after the first period on a short-handed goal by sophomore forward Cooper Marody, the Warriors came out and attacked the net.

Six and half minutes into the second period Brother Rice sophomore forward Matthew Riggleman intercepted a pass at center ice and walked it over to the right circle and fired a shot that was initially saved by St. Mary’s sophomore goaltender Will Ulrich. The puck then trickled behind Ulrich and tied the game at 1-1.

A minute and a half later, senior forward Marcus Mazur fired a shot from the left circle that was turned away. The puck then squirted to the top of crease towards junior forward Blake Bazzi who tapped it in for a 2-1 lead.

Brother Rice’s smothering play led to another intercepted pass a couple minutes later deep in the Eaglets’ zone. Sophomore Connor Jean took the intercepted puck behind St. Mary’s goal at the end line, and moved it in for a point blank shot over Ulrich for 3-1 lead.

A minute and half later at the 3:38 mark, junior defensemen Bobby Cross offered a beautiful lead pass to a streaking Mazur who carried the puck over to the right circle, and fired home a goal for a 4-1 lead.

The last goal of the period came only about 30 seconds later when Rice intercepted another pass near center ice. Bazzi and senior Collin Cueny were on a two-on-one as they entered the Eaglet zone. At the last second Bazzi quickly passed the puck to Cueny who tapped in the one timer for a 5-1 to end the second period.

At that point, Ulrich, who had faced 27 shots on net, was pulled in a move Orchard Lake St. Mary assistant coach Jimmy Cariera hoped would “regain some confidence” on his bench.

“We won’t blame all our goals on (Ulrich),” Cariera said. “There’s got to be five mistakes in front of him before there’s a shot on net. It became a snowball affect and we began chasing the puck.

“Will didn’t have a bad game, but we pulled him to try and give our bench some confidence and spark a change of luck.”

That spark was definitely was seen early in the third period after St. Mary’s got two goals and tried to close the gap.

Early in the third period Marody led a surge against junior goaltender Jack Bowman who turned away the initial offering. However, junior forward Kyle Kassa followed up the rebound and poked the puck through the five hole to make it 5-2. Four minutes later Kassa and Marody spurred another effort that too was turned away until junior Taylor Bommarito put back the point blank offering to make it 5-3.

With Brother Rice reeling, the Warriors caught a break when the Eaglets committed a penalty to give them a man advantage. After receiving a pass from Bazzi, senior Ross Haffey crashed the net and fired a shot to regain the momentum and score a power play goal to take a 6-3 lead.

Brother Rice would again build off its lead late in the third period when Mazur earned his second goal of the night to make it 7-3 before Marody would score his second goal of the night off a rebound with 1:11 to make it 7-4.

Next week Brother Rice will travel to Traverse City to face Traverse City Central and Traverse City West on consecutive nights where they look to avoid “bus legs” and extend its winning streak.

According to Cariera, the Eaglets will use this video to learn from the team’s mistakes and look to rebound on Wednesday night when they face Warren De La Salle on the road.



BIRMINGHAM BROTHER RICE 7, ORCHARD LAKE ST. MARY’S 4

OLSM 1 0 3 — 4

BR 0 5 2 — 7

First Period: 1, OLSM, Cooper Marody (unassisted) Short-handed

Second Period: 2, BR, Matt Riggleman (unassisted); 3, BR, Blake Bazzi (Marcus Mazur, Connor Duncan); 4, BR, Connor Jean (unassisted) Short-handed; 5, BR, Mazur (Bobby Cross); 6, BR, Collin Cueny (Bazzi)

Third Period: 7, OLSM, Kyle Kassa (Marody); 8, OLSM, Taylor Bommarito (Marody, K.Kassa); 9, BR, Ross Haffey (Bazzi); 10, BR, Mazur (Nick Rosa); 11, OLSM Marody (Anothony Scarsella)

Goalkeepers: OLSM, Will Ulrich (27) OLSM, Ryan Bednard (9) ; Rice, John Bowman (18)

RECORDS — Orchard Lake St. Mary’s 7-4-1; Birmingham Brother Rice 10-0-2

Last Updated: 1/5/2013 11:15:16 PM EST

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