North County's bid for an undefeated regular season fell short last night when visiting Broadneck rolled to a 12-8 victory.
Broadneck (12-1) ran off seven unanswered goals in the first 16 1/2 minutes, taking the steam out of the Knights (12-1). John Lengyl fired three of those goals on his way to a four-goal outing.
Jason Hull and Mike Ploss (two goals each) and Jeremy Ogas scored the remaining goals, and Bob Hanna (two goals, five assists) handed out four of the six first-half assists. Mark Collins and Andy Mocarsky each scored a goal to keep North County from being shut out during the first half.
While the Bruins' offense put constant pressure on goalie Chris Labosky (eight saves), the defense, led by goalie Sam Peterson's 12 saves, hounded its opponents throughout the half by forcing them to shoot without first controlling the incoming passes.
"My defensive unit of Dobson [Brian], Irmler [Alex], Paez [Andrew] and Konrad [Matt] did a tremendous job," said Broadneck coach Clay White. "It would be tough to find four better defensemen anywhere."
White continued, "We were scared coming into the game because of the way North County had been coming out of the gate in the first half. This time, we finally got off to a quick start."
Shortly after Broadneck took its biggest lead of the night, 11-3 with 8:36 left, the Knights showed the pride of a playoff team by scoring five of the last six goals. Greg Sabo and Ian Stevenson each scored twice, and Shawn Moyer and Collins scored once.
"We had our opportunities to score early in the game, but we just didn't get enough good shots off to test them," said Knights coach Paul Shea.
With both teams having assured themselves of playoff spots in the 4A-3A state tournament (Broadneck in Region IV, North County in Region II), White saw last night's game as a yardstick to measure his team against the elite.
"This game was basically for bragging rights in the county, that's all," he said. "But it's a challenge to go undefeated in this county with so many strong teams like North County, and we've done it for two straight years."