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MacAinsh’s hat trick powers Pennsbury to Flyers Cup AA title

HATFIELD TWP. > A magical season for Pennsbury’s Brendan MacAinsh ended with a hat trick, as the Falcons’ senior dynamo led his squad to the Flyers Cup AA Title Tuesday night.

“I told MacAinsh after the game,” Pennridge coach Jeff Montagna said, “I’ve been around this game a long time. He’s as good a player that’s come through this league. He’s as good a leader that’s come through this league. And if we’re gonna lose to somebody, I’d rather lose to him. He put that team on his back and he won them a Flyers Cup.”

MacAinsh’s three goals and Most Valuable Player performance was the difference for the Falcons, who skated to a 5-3 victory in front of a standing-room-only crowd at Hatfield Ice.

Said MacAinsh, the Falcons’ incomparable forward: “For four years, I’ve been trying to get this. I got the SHSHL (title) but nothing is like this. This is awesome.”

Pennsbury built a 3-1 lead by the third but saw Pennridge storm back to draw even. Justin Marlin scored the go-ahead goal for the Falcons with 8 minutes, 19 seconds left to play, and MacAinsh’s open-net goal as time expired ushered in the celebration.

“It was more of a defensive matchup in the first half of the game and then flood gates opened,” said MacAinsh. “We started stretching the ice out a little bit more on both sides and that’s when the goals started coming.”

Pennsbury watches the action from the bench during its Flyers Cup 2A Final battle with Pennridge. (Kev Hunter/MediaNews Group)

The Falcons tied the game at one apiece in the second period when MacAinsh struck for the first time. The senior scored again on a slap shot from the top of the circle to put Pennsbury up 2-1.

Heading into the third, the Falcons felt juiced.

“That break really helps us,” MacAinsh said. “We’re usually gassed in the second, and that break makes us come out on fire every time.”

Sure enough, Pennsbury increased its lead to 3-1 when Andrew Falkenstein set up Evan Eisler.

But the Rams rallied back.

Goals by Tyler Manto and Shane Dachowski deadlocked the game at three apiece.

The Falcons then made their push, overcoming a solid effort by Ram goaltender Jacob Winton.

“McDaniel played great too. He saved us a couple times,” said MacAinsh. “Pennridge could have had a couple more but (McDaniel) didn’t let them cash in.”

Andrew Falkenstein of Pennsbury defends Pennridge’s Shane Dachowski during their Flyers Cup 2A Final battle. (Kev Hunter/MediaNews Group)

The Rams went up 1-0 in the first on a goal by Dachowski and seemingly made it 2-0 but the goal was waved off (the net was knocked off center).

“It was a fabulous hockey game. Props to Pennsbury. Props to their goaltender,” said Montagna, who guided his squad to the title a year ago. “For a period and a half, we had chance after chance. And we did not take advantage of it. If we get that game to 2-0, it’s a whole different story. The goal that got called off, that changed everything.

“I’m proud of the guys. It’s the price of playing this game. It’s the price of wanting something so bad. You’re not always gonna win…We’ll be back.”

Pennridge’s Shane Dachowski and Colin Dachowski, along with Pennsbury’s Andrew Falkenstein, Justin Marlin (leading scorer for the tournament) and goalie Aaron McDaniel all landed spots on the all-tournament team.

Pennsbury 5, Pennridge 3

Pennsbury 0 2 3 – 5

Pennridge 1 0 2 – 3

First Period

P-Shane Dachowski (Tyler Manto), 4:39.

Second Period

Pby-Brendan MacAinsh (Justin Marlin), 13:38; Pby-MacAinsh (Marlin), 15:45.

Third Period

Pby-Evan Eisler (Andrew Falkenstein), 2:35; P-Manto (James Rush), 4:22; P-Dachowski (Kevin Pico), 5:46; Pby-Marlin, 8:41; Pby-MacAinsh, 16:59.

Shots: Pennsbury 29; Pennridge 37.

Saves: Aaron McDaniel (Pby) 34; Jacob Winton (P) 24.



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