B'ville hockey rallies past Liverpool

Not even eight minutes had passed, and the Baldwinsville ice hockey team was on the brink of falling out of the Division I playoff race.

Even on the familiar home ice of Lysander Arena, the Bees were down, 3-0, to the Liverpool Warriors last Tuesday night, knowing that it could not make any further mistakes if it wanted to climb toward the top four and make it to the Section III tournament.

What followed in the remaining two-plus periods of play was pure hockey bliss for B'ville fans, as the team roared back, took the lead by the time the second period was over, and pummeled the archrival Warriors 8-4.

All the trouble began when Nick Leader, starting in the net, surrendered goals to Matt Wilson, Brad Capone and Dan Cibelli, all within a span of 3:23.

Down by three, head coach Mark Lloyd pulled Leader in favor of Eric Manley, and immediately the Bees showed much more energy, as Justin Tierney scored to cut the deficit to 3-1 late in the period.

Though Kevin Sattler put Liverpool up 4-1 with a goal early in the second period, the Bees remained unfazed -- for it was about to take over.

Ben Blujus provided the spark, scoring twice in a span of 15 seconds to rattle the Warriors and slash the deficit to 4-3.

Then, on a Liverpool power play, Ryan Vendetti made the night's most spectacular move. Vendetti took the puck in his own end, sped up the middle and slid around two Warrior defender, then charged to the net and beat Matt Miller up top for a short-handed goal that tied it, 4-4.

As if that wasn't damaging enough, Tierney provided a dagger when, on a delayed penalty with 40.1 seconds left, he put home his second goal and B'ville was out in front, 5-4, going to the second intermission.

Shocked by the turn of events, Liverpool fell apart in the third period. Eric Parah, who had three assists on the night, scored to make it 6-4, Vendetti broke in to get his second goal, and Blujus completed his hat trick with 4:24 to play.

In addition to the three goals, Blujus gained two assists. Kevin McMahon matched Parah with three assists, while Cameron Davoy got one assist. Manley, after his late entry, finished with 14 saves.

After two weekend games in the north country, the Bees get another crucial test Thursday when Oswego visits Lysander Arena.

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