HATFIELD TWP. >> Central Bucks West built a big lead early and then, as coach Dave Baun said, did not resort back to pond hockey.
Instead the Bucks played a fundamentally-sound game throughout, had few breakdowns, moved the puck well and went to the right places.
“I was really proud of them,” Baun said of his team, which now sits atop the Continental Conference after its 9-3 win over North Penn Thursday night at Hatfield Ice.
The Bucks improved to a perfect 10-0 in the Continental.
“Imagine that,” Baun said. “A few years ago we were 0-10, went four years and won three games. So some of these kids were around for that. It’s good. When things work out the way they should, everyone should enjoy a little time in the sun and a little time in the shade.”
CB West remains in the sun, and bolted to a 5-1 lead Thursday night.
Jake Boehm got to a loose puck and put it home for a 1-0 Bucks lead just over two minutes into the contest.
Dalton Karl found an opening and went top shelf to increase the margin to 2-0 and then Boehm quickly had his second goal, knocking in a rebound for a 3-0 West lead seven minutes in.
“I like the way we created opportunities and just made things happen,” Boehm said. “It’s good team play. It’s good (to get to 10-0). We obviously have a lot of pressure on us but we’re good under pressure. Hopefully we can keep it rolling.”
George Boyle scored on a breakaway for the Knights, providing some momentum with 3:27 left in the period, but then West came on strong, finishing the first with back-to-back goals.
After a score by Joey Rockovich, Boehm set up Scott Cappuccio to make it 5-1 after one period at Hatfield Ice.
“I really like the way they’re playing,” Baun said of his squad, which got additional goals from Tucker Forte, Cappuccio, Joe Anton and a team-high 12th tally from Karl to lead 7-2 after two and put it away in the third. “They’re mature. They have fun but they support one another and they never get down.
“We played CB South a week ago (and won 5-2) and they scored a couple goals, came back on us, took the momentum but our kids kept a good attitude and stayed supportive, which means a lot to me as a coach.”
North Penn, still in the thick of the playoff race, settled down in the second and third periods, getting goals from Nathan Oh and Josh Kaufhold.
“We kind of finally woke up there but you spot a team like that three goals – and they’re tough defensively – it’s gonna be tough to battle back there,” Knights coach Kevin Vaitis said. “The thing I was pleased with was the guys kept moving their feet, they kept working, and we played all the way to the end. And getting that goal at the end is something we can build on for next week.
“We got five games left so we gotta get going here,” Vaitis said. “Once you get into the playoffs, everybody’s 0-0, and we’ve seen that before. But right now we gotta focus on Pennridge next week.”
Caleb Floyd made nine saves on 14 shots for North Penn, with Catherine Winstanley finishing up, turning away 17 of 21 West shots. Jonah Brous secured 15 of 16 North Penn shots, and Jeremy Kennard came on late, stopping 16 of 18.
Central Bucks West skates again Wednesday night against Souderton Area back at Hatfield Ice and North Penn (6-5) returns to the rink next Thursday the 27th against Pennridge, also at Hatfield Ice.