Bears USA Hockey OH HS State Championships Recap
The North Royalton Bears participated in the 2015 USA Hockey, Ohio High School State Championships March 6-8th in Columbus earning 6.5 points total in the three game round robin. The 12 team tournament (top 4 teams from Columbus, Cincinnati and Cleveland) follows a point by period format with the top 4 point earning teams advancing to the semifinals after the three game round robin.
The Bears faced off against the tournament’s #1 seed, Dayton, in their opening round game falling to the Stealth, 4-3. North Royalton got off to a sluggish start surrendering two quick goals before finding their pace. Trailing, 2-0, midway through the 1st period the Bears netted their first of the game when Paul Jablonski tapped home a rebound from a Nicolai Kolasinski shot; also picking up an assist on the goal was Preston Vinyard. The story of the middle period was the solid play in net from the Bears freshman net minder, Collin Mischak, who came in to relive Joey Fratantonio early in the game. Mischak stopped 25/26 shots in the 2nd period alone and 44/46 overall. North Royalton seemed to respond to the energy Mischak provided and picked up their play considerably in the final period scoring twice. Anthony Picciano tallied an unassisted score early in the 3rd and, after a Stealth goal; Jacob Krosky brought the Bears back to within one assisted by Cam Cook and Timmy Orlosky.
North Royalton faced off against Northern Kentucky, Cincinnati’s #3 seed, in their second game of the tournament topping the Norse, 5-1. Senior captain Paul Jablonski led the way for the Bears scoring three times for the hat trick. Jablonski opened the scoring for the Bears in the 1st period with assists being awarded to Nicolai Kolasinski and Nick Magro. Mike Ambrose put the Bears up, 2-0. Just 39 ticks later when he buried a Jacob Krosky feed; also assisting on the goal was Colin O’Connor. The Bears added to their lead late in the middle period, on the power play, when Cam Cook blasted home an Ambrose fee d to put the Bears up, 3-0. Jablonski added his second of the game, assisted by Krosky and Ambrose, early in the final period and, after a Norse goal, added his final goal, an unassisted score with just over three minutes left in the period. Collin Mischak played solid in net stopping 18/19 shots he faced in the victory.
The Bears faced a tough test in their final game facing off against the Newark Generals, the #2 seed in Columbus and the 2015 Greater Columbus HS Hockey League Blue Jacket Cup winners. The two teams skated evenly through the opening period with each team scoring twice. North Royalton got goals from Jeremy Gripp, assisted by Christian Fernandez, and Jacob Krosky, assisted by Timmy Orlosky and Collin O’Connor. Newark owned the middle period netting the only two goals scored despite the two teams each having great chances. The final period was back and forth, much like the whole game, however Newark once again got the edge on the scoreboard scoring twice with Royalton only getting one. The Bears lone goal was scored by Paul Jablonksi assisted by Nicolai Kolasinki and Nick Magro.
The Bears finished their 2014/15 season with an impressive 26-17-5 season.