After a 6-2 loss in last week's Big North Bronze Cup game against Ramsey, many on Pascack Valley's hockey team thought their season over.
Entering the game, PV's prospects looked good, as PV was handily outscoring its opponents in its 5 victories.
Ramsey struck first, but PV's Luke Ciocca came back to tie the game.
However, from Ciocca's goal on, it was all Ramsey, as the Rams came back to score 5 unanswered goals.
The general feeling is that that game marked the end of PV's season, coach Ken DelSanto was approached by the High Point (10-8-1) coach, who asked if PV wanted to play.
PV was hungry to play again and avenge the loss, so along came this opportunity.
Ultimately, PV opted to take the High Point coach up on his offer, which means PV will have another chance to end the season with a win, and gives Trent Shanley one final chance to score 30 goals this season.
The game is Friday at 7:20 at Skylands Ice World.
Trent Shanley, who's solidified himself as one of North Jersey's premier goal scorers, looks to join elite company in the coming games, as he is just one point shy of 100 for his career.
Shanley, who was the catalyst for PV (5-11-1) against Ramapo on Thursday night, provided four goals and one assist in the 6-3 victory, bringing his season point total to 37, and career point total to 99.
PV's got five games remaining, which gives Shanley five opportunities to try and reach the mark.
If he reaches 100, he will join Matt Truglio, Andrew Redvanly, and several others to record 100.
Stay right here and follow @pvsportscenter on Twitter for updates.
Despite PV's 4-10-1 record so far this season, it hasn't slowed down forward Trent Shanley and defenseman Alex Sullivan.
Shanley, who was recently nominated as one of the best goal scorers in the Big North Conference, currently has 21 goals in 15 games, good for 1.4 goals per game. He also currently sits nine points shy of 100 for his career, and with five games to play, he needs to average just around 2 points per game to reach the milestone.
Also among the tops in North Jersey for scoring is sophomore defenseman Alex Sullivan. Sullivan's 15 assists put him seventh in North Jersey in assists, and top among defenseman.
Check out the full list here:
Seniors Trent Shanley and Luke Ciocca are getting recognition for their individual achievements, despite a recent skid by PV.
Shanley currently ranks 16th in the state with 21 goals entering Tuesday night's game against Scotch Plains-Fanwood.
Ciocca has 10 goals on the season entering Tuesday's game.
As a result of the forward duo's impressive performance, NJ.com is running a poll for the best goal scorer in the Big North Conference, and has nominated both Shanley and Ciocca.
You can vote for both of them here:
That's about the only word that can adequately describe what transpired on Tuesday night at South Mountain Arena.
Pascack Valley won 12-6 over West Orange to move to 2-7-1 on the season. But it's not just the 12 goals that are surprising—it's where they came from.
Riding momentum from the previous day's game, a 4-3 loss at the hands of Scotch Plains-Fanwood, in which PV scored three late third period goals, PV came out firing from the beginning of Tuesday's game against West Orange.
Literally the beginning.
Trent Shanley, PV's leading scorer entering the game, scored 36 seconds into the game and from then on, it was Shanley versus the world.
It would be that first goal that likely propelled Shanley into the annals of New Jersey high school hockey history.
That goal was Shanley's first of eight in the game. To put it in perspective, PV has gone almost two full seasons without scoring eight goals as a team in one game.
He scored two goals in PV's previous game against Scotch Plains, and with 11 minutes left in the first period, he already had a hat trick.
While that efficiency is impressive, it's more impressive that Shanley only needed two periods to reach the eight goal mark.
The eight goals put Shanley in a league of his own. It's likely that not even Johnny Gaudreau or James Van Riemsdyk, two current NHL players from New Jersey, scored eight goals in a game during their high school careers.
But he was quick to deflect praise.
"Honestly, it wasn't about me. Getting eight goals is great and all, but it was more important that the team got back in the win column," he said.
If Shanley wasn't going to praise himself, other people had no problem doing so.
Shanley's performance can't be understated. In fact, it's hard to do a performance of that caliber justice.
While West Orange may not have been the strongest opponent, it doesn't diminish the result, and the momentum that PV gained from winning for the first time since December 3rd.
"As a team we gained some confidence back. Now we have to take this confidence and use it to our advantage each and every game," he said.
But Shanley wasn't the only one to enjoy success yesterday.
Senior Luke Ciocca, who had a hat trick and an additional two assists, as well as freshman Jake Zaretsky, who scored his first varsity goal, both helped out in the win.
"This was the turning point our season needed," Ciocca said. "We were able to get the puck in the net and and move the puck as a team."
PV will take on Nutley in its final game of the Essex Holiday Tournament.
Pascack Valley is 1-4-1 through its first six games this season, and is winless in its last three.
But it's not all bad for PV, as senior Trent Shanley currently has six points (5 goals, 1 assist) and senior Luke Ciocca also has six points (3 goals, 3 assists). Both have played big roles for the Indians this year.
PV takes on 2-2 Tenafly tonight, and PV coach Ken DelSanto said that defense will be a point of emphasis.
"We need to focus on our defense first before we start doing anything else," he said. "Our starting defensive corps has been young, but they're playing at a relatively high level so far."
One of the key young defenders has been Alex Sullivan, who scored a goal last week for PV in its 3-3 tie against Glen Rock.
He's been leaned on heavily as a leader of this defense, and has taken it upon himself to try and do more whenever he can.
"I try my hardest certainly to do what I can, and people are relying on me more than last year," he acknowledged. "I do what I can [to communicate] on the ice, because there are some inexperienced players."
The Indians hope that a win against the Tigers will give them the momentum needed going into their holiday tournament.
Welcome to The Smoke Signal's new Hockey blog. Here you'll find out various info about the team, its players, and coach both on and off the court.
Be on the lookout for routine posts ranging from funny to serious to informative to anything in between.
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