Owen J. Roberts proves too much for Perkiomen Valley

Bucktown — Saturday was a true test for Perkiomen Valley.

It was a test to see if the Vikings were ready to compete with a perennial PAC-10 powerhouse like Owen J. Roberts, who has faced Spring-Ford in the previous eight PAC-10 championships.

And it’s safe to say Perk Valley passed, but still has some work to go as it suffered a 7-4 loss at the hands of Owen J. Roberts, despite entering the fourth quarter tied 4-4.

“There were times where we had good possessions, but we made mistakes and felt rushed, which really cost us,’ said Perkiomen Valley (3-2, 4-2) head coach Bryan Churchey. “When you’re playing in a tight, competitive game against a really good team like them, every possession matters. In a game like this, the team that controls the ball usually comes away with the goals, and that’s what happened today.’

Although it was tight for most of the way, it was the experience of Owen J. Roberts that ultimately gave them the edge, as the Wildcats boast a roster of 18 seniors as compared to Perk Valley’s eight.

“Perk Valley came ready to play today,’ said Owen J. Roberts head coach Jeff Neese. “It took us a while to get our heads into the game, and it showed. But down the stretch we buckled down and did what we needed to do to get the win.’

Austin Delgatto (one assist) had his head in it the whole way as he scored a game-high four goals for Owen J. Roberts (4-1, 4-2) while Jack Colt (one assist), Evan Massa and Chris Kent all scored once. Brandon Calle made seven saves in net while Sam Garges had two assists and Austin Coury had one.

“Once we settled in and started to make good passes, we were able to create a lot of scoring chances inside,’ said Delgatto, a junior. “We knew this wouldn’t be an easy game, but we played really well and took advantage of whatever they gave us.’

For Perkiomen Valley, Ben Minardi had two goals while Shawn Coulter and Matt Baker each had one. Kevin Mo made 17 saves in goal. Nick Sienna and Nick Marren each had an assist.

Perkiomen Valley came out of the gates quick, as the Vikings jumped out to a 3-0 lead eight minutes in spearheaded by two unassisted goals from Ben Minardi.

But Delgatto netted two goals in the final two and a half minutes of the quarter, and the Wildcats never took their foot off the gas as they scored seven of the next eight goals to secure the victory.

Colt and Delgatto each netted goals for the Wildcats in the second frame to enter the half with a 4-3 and never trailed the rest of the way.

In the third, both defenses hung tight, until Sienna went on a breakaway and found Baker to tie it at 4-4.

But it was the Wildcat offense in the final quarter that gave them the edge as Delgatto and Massa scored two quick goals to open up the quarter followed later by another goal from Kent to seal the Wildcats the win.

“We stepped up on both sides of the ball and that proved the difference,’ said Neese. “That’s a strong team we faced today, and we’ll need to keep up the intensity when we face them again.’

“Our team did a lot of good things out there today,’ said Churchey. “Obviously it wasn’t the result we had hoped for, but I’m really happy with the fight and the grit that our guys showed on both sides of the ball. We kept a really strong team in-check, and I’m really impressed with that.’

Although Perkiomen Valley didn’t quite ace the test Saturday, the Vikings showed a lot of promise for the rest of the way as they’ll get a second chance at the Wildcats in just a few weeks.

NOTES — With the wind blowing strong from north to south, Owen J. scored three goals while playing against the breeze while Perk Valley had none … Owen J. Roberts is now in second place in the PAC-10 with the win while Perkiomen Valley drops to third … The Wildcats will look to keep rolling on Monday as they travel to Holy Ghost Prep in a non-league game … Perkiomen Valley will look to bounce back with a non-league game at Lower Merion.

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