PHOENIXVILLE - It is early in the spring sports season, and coaches are still hunting for the right combination of players along with the search for hard work and improvement with each practice session and game.
Perkiomen Valley coach Bryan Churchey also sought a complete game from his players during last Wednesday afternoon’s Pioneer Athletic Conference contest against Phoenixville.
The Vikings found both their offense and defense clicking that led to an 11-2 victory over the Phantoms at their new multi-purpose turf field.
Perkiomen Valley opened a 5-1 lead in the first period and stretched that margin to 8-1 by halftime.
“This was probably the most complete game we’ve played this year,” said Churchey. “In our first two games our offense and defense were on and off at times. Today, we put them both together. On offense, we created scoring opportunities and on defense we did a great job communicating. That’s what we want.”
Kris Boyd, Sean Tornetta and Zach Lynn each scored two goals for the Vikings while Dan Sullivan, Shawn Dickey, Jamie Klementisz, Doug Stearly and Ben Minardi added single tallies.
Lynn picked up two assists, and Boyd, Dickey and Minardi chipped in helpers for the visitors.
Bryce Womack played three quarters in goal and had five saves while Mike Filopanti finished the game in goal. Sean Cooney and Ryan Gallagher anchored the defense.
Chris Schellberg scored the first Phoenixville goal at 3:14 of the first period to make it 3-1 in favor of the Vikes. But the Phantoms did not score again until Isaac Levine converted an assist by Scott Welsh with 1:57 left in the game.
Nick Lolli had a big game in goal for the Phantoms with 16 saves. Lolli was busy with 10 stops in the first half alone.
“We put in a whole new offense, a whole new offense, new clears and a new philosophy,” said Churchey. “So there has been learning curves. We want them to stay within the system. That’s what we have been preaching, but sometimes they go back to old habits.”
Churchey was glad to see considerable improvement from his midfielders - Zach Port, Sullivan, Lynn and Dickey - who all figured prominently in the attack.
“They really stepped up,” said Churchey. “They had no points yesterday against Bishop Shanahan, but today they dominated.”
Boyd, Sullivan and Dickey scored the first three goals of the game with Schellberg’s goal sandwiched in between Tornetta’s first goal and the second by Boyd
before time expired in the opening quarter.
Tornetta scored on a rebound at 11:07 of the second quarter, and Lynn put home a feed from Dickey at 4:52 to make it 7-1. Klementisz earned his goal with a pass from Boyd at 1:23 to seal the scoring prior to halftime.
There was no scoring during the third period.
“Defensively, our poles are doing pretty well,” said Phoenixville coach Grady Wise. “They were pressuring the ball. With our zone and 1-on-1, we stuck with in on defense. And Nick Lolli did a great job in goal making saves. Some of them were right on the doorstep. He made a lot of saves.”
The Phantoms know they will have to generate more offense in order to stay the course of improvement.
“The effort is there,” said Wise. “The depth factor is going to work against us because we are thin. But we run up and back. They are playing up and down. They play dead tired and they are going to have to play when they are dead tired. It’s early, and we have to learn from this game.”