WALL TOWNSHIP — Collin Sullo had a hand in five goals as the junior scored three goals and set up two more to power Freehold Township to an 11-3 victory over cross-town rival Freehold Boro-Raritan at the Jersey Shore Arena in Wall.
Evan McNamara added two goals and two assists, Kyle Nestepny also scored twice and Jacob Liebross chipped in a goal and two assists for Freehold Township, which has won six of its last eight games to improve to 8-5-2 overall.
“We are a very young team and our potential is so great,” Freehold Township coach Michael Celano said. “We have three seniors on this team and the rest are underclassmen. We are getting some really solid play out of our goalies and we have a very solid defensive core.”
With some solid work down low, McNamara and Sullo got the puck from the corner to Liebross who was open at the side of the net to put Freehold Township on the board 2:24 into the game. McNamara and Sullo continued to make plays and the duo worked in unison again, this time setting up Nestepny just 38 seconds later to make it 2-0.
McNamara was on the finishing end with 9:42 left to send Freehold Township into the first intermission with a three-goal lead.
Sullo scored twice in a span of 2:43 on turnovers at center ice which led to odd-man rushes to extend Freehold Township’s lead to 5-0 before Tyler DesRochers scored unassisted with 47 seconds left in the middle frame.
Freehold Boro would get on the board before the end of the period, however, as Jon Wilder intercepted an errant puck in the neutral zone on the power play before going in all alone and beating Township goalie Mike Ottone on a breakaway with 14 seconds left.
Ottone, who finished with six saves, gave way to Mike Pannullo for the third.
Freehold Township scored five times in the third and final frame beginning with Niko Neron, who scored shorthanded 3:41 into the period, assisted by Tyler Sanborn.
Nestepny connected on his second goal of the game to make it 8-1 before Freehold Boro beat Pannullo when Andrew Kutzman scored, unassisted, with 6:50 remaining in regulation.
Sanborn found the back of the net 1:01 later and Sullo completed the hat trick with 2:20 left before McNamara picked up his fourth point of the contest on an unassisted effort with 1:49 on the clock.
Credit to Freehold Boro-Raritan (5-11-2), which never stopped battling and was rewarded when Dylan Muerer lit the lamp with seven seconds left.
“I am very happy to see the team coming together,” Celano said. “We are really starting to play some good hockey.
“If we are going to make a run, now is the time for the pieces to all fall together,” Celano added.
Main Image: Freehold Boro’s Dylan Muerer (17) gets around Freehold Township’s Kennan Alkoc (3) to get a shot off at the Jersey Shore Arena in Wall Township on January 30, 2018. (Tom Smith/TSPImages)
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