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Barons use OT goal to stymie comeback by Hilltop in rivalry game Phillip Brents | Wed, Jan 29 2014 01:29 PM

The National Hockey League may have its Original Six but the CIF-Metro Conference has Dan Vaccaro and Keith Quigley, the conference’s coaching deans who have guided their respective teams since their formation in the San Diego County High School Roller Hockey Conference nearly two decades ago.

Vacarro got the Hilltop Lancers rolling in 1996-97; Quigley has led the Bonita Vista Barons since their founding in 1998. From the beginning, it marked the fiercest rivalry in the fledgling sport.

The two veteran coaches got to rekindle that old rivalry Tuesday night at the Castle Park High School rink and it proved to be just like old times as the Barons, after coughing up a 4-0 lead, pulled out a dramatic 5-4 overtime victory to improve to 10-3 on the season.

“I told the team at the beginning of the third period that Hilltop was going to throw everything at us, including the kitchen sink, to cite an old cliché,” Quigley said. “And they did. They tied it up. But the key for us to was finish it off.”

It’s been an amazing season for the upstart Barons, winners of the inaugural two Kiwanis Cup tournament titles in 2001 and 2002. Bonita Vista won its first tournament title in 12 years after dealing Hilltop a 4-3 setback in the championship game of the inaugural Pam Wiser Memorial Cup on Jan. 20, and doesn’t appear to be slowing down any time soon.

“We’ve played them twice and lost both times by one goal,” Vaccaro said. “Keith has done a wonderful job with his team. It was just like old times, and I’ll take that.”

The Barons built a 4-0 lead through two periods and midway through the third stanza looked to be rolling toward their most complete effort of the season. Scoring ace Jonathan O’Brien scored on a breakaway to push Quigley’s team out in front by a 1-0 margin in the opening period.

Bonita Vista scored the only three goals of the second period to seemingly take command of the scoreboard. Thomas Giltner set up O’Brien for a 2-0 lead and Giancarlo Dongo made it 3-0 off a pass from O’Brien.

O’Brien’s hat trick goal, assisted by Alex Tran, upped the BVHS margin to four goals.

Both teams had vocal cheering sections and Hilltop’s fans made the most noise in the third period as the Lancers made up the four-goal deficit with inspired play in the frantic closing minutes.

Andrew Tesner got Hilltop’s first goal to make it 4-1 and Phillip Fuñe then scored the first of his two markers on the night to cut the deficit to 4-2.

“We made some positional switches to increase our team speed in carrying the puck forward, and bingo, we scored two quick goals,” Vaccaro said.

Lancer netminder Jacob Moctezuma, meanwhile, covered a flurry of scoring chances by the Barons, who were seeking the means to finally put the game on ice. But Hilltop continued to ramp up its intensity, and Danny Godinez rewarded his teammates by scoring with 2:30 left in regulation to trim the BV lead to 4-3.

Tesner drew the assist on Godinez’ goal.

Fuñe then tied the game in the final minute of the period, assisted by Godinez.

A five-minute sudden-victory overtime period ensued, and Hilltop immediately went on the attack.

Said Quigley: “They had all the momentum going into overtime.”

The Barons (2-3 in Mesa League play) caught a break when the Lancers (0-5 in league, 7-7 overall) were whistled for a two-minute penalty, but Hilltop got the first shot off, forcing BV netminder Hawk Anderson to block a potential game-winning short-handed goal.

The Barons recovered to apply some pressure but couldn’t capitalize on the power play, and the teams went back to four-on-four skating for the duration of the OT session.

Giltner nearly sent in O’Brien on a breakaway but the pass was too far and the play ended up with a restart to the left of the Hilltop net. The restart came in front of the Lancer cage and, with players from both teams poking the puck, O’Brien finally flipped in a rebound to give his team the hard-fought overtime win.

The goal was the 60th of the season for O’Brien, who was promptly mobbed by teammates.

O’Brien finished the game with four goals and one assist. Quigley estimated that Anderson faced close to 60 shots fired his way in the game.

“I know they had 25 shots in the first period,” the BVHS coach said. “Hawk continues to amaze me with his solid play.”

 “You win some, you lose some, but we’ve kept this league going and it seems more competitive than ever this season,” Vaccaro said.

The Barons and Lancers will meet twice more in Mesa League play.

In another game on Tuesday:

Eastlake 10, Otay Ranch 1

The Titans are fielding one of the top programs in school history this season and made a clear statement for supremacy among the conference’s collection of nine Sweetwater district teams by handing their nearest challenger in the Mesa League standings a convincing defeat.

Eastlake improved to 5-0 in league play, 11-1 overall, following the win over the rival Mustangs (3-2 in league, 5-4 overall).

The man of the match proved to be defending conference scoring leader Aaron Mayer after the junior scoring wizard pumped in six goals to lead all players on the floor. Teammate Sam Bawden followed with two goals and two assists.

Mayer led the 18-team conference in scoring last season with 100 points. He equaled that on Tuesday by raising his 2013-14 totals to 62 goals and 38 points – exactly 100 points.

The Titans have four more league games, plus at least two non-league encounters, left on their regular season schedule.

How many points will Mayer finish with? Is he in line to become the top point-scorer in conference history?

A look back reveals that …

Castle Park’s Donny McGraw amassed 119 points during a 20-game regular season in 2002-03, including 86 goals. He tacked on six goals and one assist in the Trojans’ 8-7 overtime loss to Hilltop in the opening round of the Kiwanis Cup playoffs to end the season with 92 goals and 126 points.

La Jolla Country Day’s James Owsiany rocked the rink with 123 points in 2009-10 as the Torreys finished with the top three conference scorers.

Mar Vista’s Ian Nicklen finished with 118 points to lead the conference in scoring in 2006-07 after racking up 106 points in 2005-06.

La Jolla’s Johnny Noris totaled 114 points, including 97 goals, in regular season play in 2007-08; Bonita Vista’s James Arakaki totaled 109 points in 2003-04.

Mar Vista’s Hunter Calef collected 90 goals and 106 points in 2011-12 while LJCD’s Ben Sweeney put up 105 points in the 2008-09 regular season.

Otay Ranch’s Adrian Rodriguez tallied 101 points in 2004-05 while Eastlake’s Jace White and Otay Ranch’s Ryan Trego tied for the conference scoring lead with 94 points in 2010-11.

Scripps Ranch’s Dan Comrie tallied 105 points in regular season play in 2001-02, the first season that saw two non-district teams (Scripps Ranch, La Jolla Country Day) compete alongside district schools. Comrie tacked on four goals in two playoff games to finish with 109 points. He had three goals and two assists in an 8-4 semifinal playoff win over LJCD and collected one goal in the Falcons’ 3-2 overtime loss to the Barons in what likely stands as the greatest game ever played in the 14-year history of the conference.

Statistics cannot be located for the inaugural 2000-01 season, though teams only played a 14-game regular season schedule.



CIF-Metro Conference 2013-14 Standings
(Through Jan. 31)

South Bay League

Southwest Raiders 8-0, 9-2
Castle Park Trojans 6-3, 8-9
Mar Vista Mariners 5-4, 6-10
Sweetwater Red Devils 1-6, 2-12
Chula Vista Spartans 1-8, 1-15

Mesa League
Eastlake Titans 5-0, 11-1
Otay Ranch Mustangs 3-2, 6-4
Bonita Vista Barons 2-3, 10-3
Hilltop Lancers 0-5, 7-7

Central League
West Hills Wolf Pack 3-1, 5-6
Cathedral Catholic Dons 3-2, 5-6
La Jolla Country Day Torreys 2-3, 7-5
St. Augustine Saints 2-4, 3-7

North County League

x-Westview Wolverines 6-1, 11-1
Rancho Bernardo Broncos 6-2, 10-2
Poway Titans 4-4, 8-4
Scripps Ranch Falcons 3-5, 4-7
x-Del Norte Nighthawks 0-7, 0-11

x-missing game scores
Note: Overall records for Mesa/South Bay league teams includes placement games in the Pam Wiser Memorial Cup

Week 7
Monday, Jan. 27
South Bay League

Castle Park 5, Chula Vista 3
Mar Vista 4, Sweetwater 0

Central League
St. Augustine 1, Cathedral Catholic 0 (forfeit)

North County League

Scripps Ranch 9, Del Norte 5
Rancho Bernardo 11, Poway 2

La Jolla Country Day 6, Southwest 3
Westview 7, West Hills 0

Tuesday, Jan. 28
Mesa League

Eastlake 10, Otay Ranch 1
Bonita Vista 5, Hilltop 4 (OT)

Wednesday, Jan. 29
North County League

Westview 10, Scripps Ranch 2
Poway 9, Del Norte 5

Central League
La Jolla Country Day 4, West Hills 2

Rancho Bernardo 10, Cathedral Catholic 0

Thursday, Jan. 30

Westview 13, Cathedral Catholic 3

Friday, Jan. 31
South Bay League

Southwest 8, Chula Vista 2
Castle Park 1, Mar Vista 0 (forfeit)

Otay Ranch 12, Sweetwater 1


Week 6
Monday, Jan. 20

Rancho Bernardo 16, West Hills 0
Poway 9, Cathedral Catholic 4
La Jolla Country Day 11, Del Norte 1
Westview 6, St. Augustine 1

Tuesday, Jan. 21
Mesa League

Otay Ranch 7, Hilltop 3
Eastlake 15, Bonita Vista 1

South Bay League
Chula Vista 3, Sweetwater 0

Wednesday, Jan. 22
South Bay League

Southwest 5, Castle Park 0

Eastlake 18, Mar Vista 0

North County League

Rancho Bernardo 17, Scripps Ranch 1
Westview vs. Del Norte, no report

Central League
West Hills 7, Cathedral Catholic 5
St. Augustine 6, La Jolla Country Day 5

Thursday, Jan. 23

Bonita Vista 8, Castle Park 3
Otay Ranch 6, Chula Vista 0
Hilltop 5, Sweetwater 0
Poway 7, West Hills 5

Friday, Jan. 24
South Bay League

Southwest 6, Mar Vista 2
Castle Park 6, Sweetwater 0

Eastlake 19, Chula Vista 0


CIF-Metro Conference Scoring Leaders
(Through Jan. 28)
Sweetwater District Teams

•Aaron Mayer (Eastlake) 62 goals, 38 assists, 100 points
•Jon O’Brien (Bonita Vista) 60 goals, 3 assist, 63 points
•Angel Rocha (Southwest) 44 goals, 8 assists, 52 points
•Michael Mechling (Eastlake) 27 goals, 24 assists, 51 points
•Devyn Taras (Otay Ranch) 24 goals, 10 assists, 34 points
•Sam Bawden (Eastlake) 21 goals, 11 assists, 32 points
•Nacho Mireles (Castle Park) 20 goals, 4 assists, 24 points
•Nick Rodriguez (Eastlake) 15 goals, 7 assists, 22 points
•Will Winters (Eastlake) 14 goals, 8 assists, 22 points
•Andrew Tesner (Hilltop) 14 goals, 7 assists, 21 points
•Sebastian Ross (Hilltop) 15 goals, 5 assists, 20 points
•Nick Ziccardi (Eastlake) 13 goals, 6 assists, 19 points
•Eloy Rodriguez (Mar Vista) 18 goals, 0 assists, 18 points
•Phillip Fuñe (Hilltop) 15 goals, 3 assists, 18 points
•Carlos Barrios (Otay Ranch) 12 goals, 6 assists, 18 points
•Miguel Flores (Castle Park) 14 goals, 3 assists, 17 points
•Ulises Mireles (Sweetwater) 13 goals, 2 assist, 15 points
•Danny Castillo (Eastlake) 12 goals, 2 assists, 14 points
•Billy Warren (Mar Vista) 11 goals, 2 assists, 13 points
•Austin Hoffman (Mar Vista) 9 goals, 4 assists, 13 points
•Ricardo Mendoza (Eastlake) 4 goals, 5 assists, 9 points
•Mikey Thompson (Chula Vista) 7 goals, 1 assist, 8 points
•Giancarlo Dongo (Bonita Vista) 6 goals, 2 assists, 8 points
•Ruben Ponce (Otay Ranch) 5 goals, 3 assists, 8 points
•Freddie Perez (Castle Park) 7 goals, 0 assists, 7 points
•Pablo Corona (Hilltop) 6 goals, 1 assist, 7 points
•Mario Licudine (Sweetwater) 6 goals, 1 assist, 7 points
•Danny Diaz (Southwest) 5 goals, 2 assist, 7 points
•Ellia Manzo (Chula Vista) 5 goals, 2 assists, 7 points
•Thomas Giltner (Bonita Vista) 5 goals, 2 assist, 7 points
•Gabe Sanchez (Eastlake) 4 goals, 3 assists, 7 points
•Henry Avalos (Southwest) 5 goals, 1 assist, 6 points
•Dane Bottomley (Mar Vista) 5 goals, 1 assist, 6 points
•Evan Lovstrom (Mar Vista) 5 goals, 1 assist, 6 points
•Sheina Dunnells (Bonita Vista) 2 goals, 4 assists, 6 points
•Marvin Cirignano (Castle Park) 5 goals, 0 assists, 5 points
•Isaac Montero (Castle Park) 4 goals, 1 assist, 5 points
•Gerardo Martinez (Hilltop) 4 goals, 1 assist, 5 points


CIF-Metro Conference Rankings
(Through Jan. 30)

1. Westview Wolverines (11-1)
2. Rancho Bernardo Broncos (10-2)
3. Poway Titans (8-4)
4. Cathedral Catholic Dons (5-6)
5. La Jolla Country Day Torreys (7-5)
6. Eastlake Titans (11-1)
7. West Hills Wolf Pack (5-6)
8. Scripps Ranch Falcons (4-7)
9. St. Augustine Saints (3-7)
10. Del Norte Nighthawks (0-11)
11. Southwest Raiders (8-2)
12. Otay Ranch Mustangs (5-4)
13. Bonita Vista Barons (10-3)
14. Hilltop Lancers (7-7)
15. Castle Park Trojans (7-9)
16. Mar Vista Mariners (6-9)
17. Sweetwater Red Devils (2-11)
18. Chula Vista Spartans (1-14)



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