CANONSBURG – There are times when it’s better to be lucky than good.
Fortunately for the Peters Township ice hockey team, Adam Alavi was both during a game against rival Canon-McMillan Monday night.
Alavi scored three goals to carry the Indians to a 5-2 victory over Canon-McMillan at Southpointe Iceoplex, one on a rebound, the second on a dump-in that got a little help from Big Macs goaltender Ryan Christian’s pad and the third on a wrist shot from the inner edge of the left circle.
“I did get really lucky on a few of those,” Alavi said. “My second goal banked off the kid’s leg and went in. I got lucky on that one, so I guess it was kind of my night.”
That it was, though Trevor Recktenwald didn’t fare too bad with a goal and three assists, the goal coming while the Indians (5-4) were short-handed just 47 seconds before the end of the second period, as he completed a two-on-one break with Josef Kittelberger by stuffing the puck through the right side of the crease.
Peters Township scored three consecutive goals over the final 2:51 of the second period to turn a 2-1 deficit into a 4-2 advantage.
“It was good for us to keep that momentum,” said Recktenwald, who leads Peters Township with 11 goals and 27 points this season. “You could tell they were getting winded and didn’t want to deal with us because we had so much speed.”
Which could’ve been said for the Big Macs (7-2-2) coming in. Canon-McMillan was 5-0-2 in its previous seven games, averaging 6.7 goals during that stretch. While the Big Macs had totaled 71 goals, nobody else in Class AAA had more than 55.
But goaltender Brian Baker stopped 31 of 33 shots, and the Indians held Canon-McMillan without a goal on six power-play chances.
“We definitely came out with a lot of effort,” said Baker, whose team is in second place in Section 1-AAA with 10 points, six fewer than Canon-Mac. “I think they thought they were going to walk all over us. We just came out strong and put it to them.”
Sam Barnes gave Peters Township an early lead when he fired a wrister from the right edge of the slot at 4:32 of the opening period before James Oddi tied it by chipping a rebound to the far post from the middle of the left dot at 2:07 of the second.
Anthony Tonkovich put the Big Macs in front at 8:43 of the middle period with his 11th goal of the season, but the Indians scored three straight times in the period to build a 4-2 edge after two.
First, Alavi deked left with a rebound and beat Christian, then he scored on what appeared to be a dump in from the high slot, the puck ticking off Christian’s pads and in at 14:51 – also giving Alavi two goals in 42 seconds.
Recktenwald capped the run when he finished off a two-on-one, short-handed break with Kittelberger by stuffing the puck inside the right post at 16:13.
Alavi put the finishing touches on his magnificent night when he went top-shelf with a rebound at 12:34 of the final period.
“I just rise to the occasion – big game against Canon-Mac, big fan section,” Alavi said. “Just rose up, I guess.”