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Jags top Cabrini, win City Cup

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A year ago the Allen Park and Cabrini teams started playing the in-city rivalry game with the City Cup on the line. Over the weekend, the Jags won that cup for the second time since its inauguration by shutting out Cabrini 4-0.

The game-winner came just two and a half minutes into the night’s contest.

David Pischke snapped one over the Cabrini net minder’s shoulder with help from Toph Mann and Jason Obrycki-Smith.

A defensive turnover on Cabrini’s part helped the Jags to strike again.

Mike Dice stole the puck from behind the net and passed it to a waiting Alec Case out in front. Case slipped it in, five-hole for the 2-0 lead with 8:24 left to play in the first.

The intense play kept up from both teams and almost a period and a half went by before the Jags struck again.

Mann added a goal to his earlier assist with a screen shot goal on the power play with 19.5 left in the second period.

Pischke assisted.

Coach John Brithinee was not worried about his team not scoring for almost the whole second period.

During that time, Allen Park put 25 shots towards the goal and 15 on net.

“I think we were focusing more on getting our guys to put things on the net so we could get a rebound attempt,” he said. “That’s what our focus was on.

“I thought that we controlled the play in that period, so I wasn’t too uptight about how they played.”

Early in the third the Jags killed off a five-on-three situation with capped the scoring with 4:41 left on the clock.

Nick Fulton scored on a wrap around goal with a backhanded shot, unassisted for the 4-0 final.

It was a night of celebrations for the Jags in their last home game of the season.

“These are tough games,” Brithinee said. “It’s senior night, sponsor night, all the players get announced; it’s the last home game.

“It’s tough games to keep mentally ready to go but they did.”

The Monarchs have struggled in the win column this season but Brithinee said his team did not take the opponents lightly.

“I thought they (Cabrini) played pretty well,” he said. “Brett Kates, their goalie played fabulously.

“They play so stinking hard every shift. Shift after shift after shift they just keep coming at you. And that’s what my guys can learn from.”

Cabrini Coach Bill Alvis was not disappointed with his team’s effort on the night.

“We had an outstanding game by senior goalie Brett Kates,” he said. “The team stuck to our game plan for the most part and kept the game close.”

Earlier in the week, Allen Park fell 2-1 to Gross Pointe South. Michael Szalie scored the lone goal.

Pre-regionals start this week for each team.

Cabrini took on Anderson on Monday with the winner playing Gabriel Richard tonight.

The Jags had a bye in the first round of the playoffs and will play the winner of the Ann Arbor Gabriel Richard-Divine Child game on Thursday night.

“DC is ranked very high in the state so we’re coming in as the underdog obviously,” Brithinee said. “I think they’re expected to win because of their ranking and what they’ve done and everything that goes on.

“So my expectations are that my guys will come out and play three strong periods of hockey and if it takes four or five or six or seven; they’re gonna be mentally ready to play.”

A season ago Allen Park won the game in triple overtime and this season the two teams have split games.

“I think the guys that were on the team last year understand what it’s gonna take,” Brithinee said. “We split this season so they know they’re not unbeatable.

“I won’t talk them down. I’ll let them get as high as they wanna get because it’s gonna take all that emotion.”

Last Updated: 2/25/2014 2:50:40 PM EST