The New Jersey 87's celebrated its return to New Jersey by going 3-0-0 over the weekend, as the EHL team picked up a pair of 6-2 wins over New York Apple Core while the Premier squad defeated the New Jersey Renegades, 6-1.
Thursday's contest for the EHL took place at SoNo Ice House in Connecticut with Apple Core as the home team. After a scoreless first period, Tim DeBord broke the ice with his third goal of the season at 5:10 of the middle period. Apple Core evened the score with a power play goal from former 87 Zach Goldenberg, but Michael Hertzberg responded with a goal just one minute and 11 seconds later. Though Sebastian Kempisty tied the game early in the third period, the 87's took control in the final seven minutes of the game by scoring four unanswered goals. Everest Schneider scored his first as an 87 to give New Jersey a 3-2 lead, and DeBord picked up two more goals to complete the hat trick. Hertzberg finished the scoring by adding his second of the game, and Matt Sayles made 20 saves in the team's 6-2 win.
Monday marked the first true home game for either 87's team since March, as the EHL team hosted Apple Core in Jersey Shore Arena. Michael Leva scored the first in the 87's new venue at 12:50 of the first period, but Nick Swain responded late in the frame with a power-play goal. Matt Bielinski, who made his season debut with New Jersey, scored twice in the second period. Dante Terramani and Bryan VanNess added to the lead in the middle frame, and Terramani added one more goal in the third period as the team cruised to another 6-2 victory. Jeremy Connor made 21 saves on 23 shots as the EHL team improves to 8-0-0.
Head coach Adam Houli spoke about the return of Matt Bielinski, who started the year with the Danbury Jr. Hat Tricks of the North American Hockey League before returning to New Jersey.
"It's exactly what we needed. We needed that punch, we needed that edge and he provided it," Houli said of Bielinski. "He finds a way to put the puck in the back of the net and we couldn't be happier to have him back in town and get him to the places he wants to get to."
Though the EHL team played the first game at Jersey Shore Arena, the Premier team played the first game in New Jersey with a road game against the Renegades, who also moved into a new arena this season. After a scoreless first period, Brock Forrest opened the scoring at 1:45 of the second by going upstairs on a wrist shot from the left circle. The 87's turned up the attack in the third period with five goals, coming off the sticks of Michael LoRicco, Ryan Miller, Damion Williams and two from Lucas Kline. Cole Morre finished the night with 31 saves as the Premier team earned the 6-1 win.
"They have been great. We're a young team at that level, we're trying to work on that consistency of playing a full junior hockey game," Houli said of the Premier team. "It's never easy when you play the Renegades, so to come in and get a workmanlike game speaks dividends to that team and how hard they're working."
-Picking up three assists in Monday's win, Tim DeBord officially became the 87's all-time leader in goals, assists and points (44g, 59a, 103pts)
-Lucas Kline was named the EHLP defenseman of the week for picking up two goals and an assist against the Renegades. He is the first d-man to get a multi-goal game for the Premier team since Ty Carter on January 26 this year, also against the Renegades.
-Dante Terramani ended a five-game goal drought on Monday against Apple Core. "It feels great. It felt like I was in a bit of a rut, so getting those two (goals) and a couple of assists with that definitely helped," he said of breaking the goal drought.
Wednesday Oct 21: at Connecticut RoughRiders - 11:30 a.m.
Friday Oct 23: vs. Team Maryland - 1:00 p.m.
Friday Oct 23: at Philadelphia Little Flyers - 8:00 p.m.
Sunday Oct 25: Doubleheader at Connecticut Chiefs - 10:50 a.m. and 1:50 p.m.
Photo credit: Richard O'Donnell
Tag(s): In the News