Though it proved to be a bit stressful, especially at the outset, the Liverpool ice hockey team still found itself back at the .500 mark heading into another important stretch of the season.
In last Monday’s game against Central Square at the Cicero Twin Rinks, the Warriors, led by Tyler Garofalo, pulled out a 7-6 decision over the Red Hawks.
All game long, it proved tight. With a 2-2 tie going into the second period, the Warriors managed to inch out in front, 5-4, in that frame, and held on by matching Central Square's output in the final period.
Through it all, Garofalo managed a hat trick, finding the net three times, while Kody Gaulke had two goals and one assist and Dalton Horton managed three assists.
Supporting them, Nate Bittel and Don McManus earned single goals, with Richie Hart managing two assists. Rocco Leone and Zach Vivenzo had one assist apiece. Despite some struggles in the net, goalie Stephen Kozikoski recorded 23 saves.
Liverpool maintained its offensive firepower against Ontario Bay Thursday night at Greater Baldwinsville Ice Arena, but improved on defense and beat the Storm 9-3.
Essentially, the margin was built in the first two periods, the Warriors steadily working its way to a 5-1 lead and answering every time Ontario Bay tried to get close in the late going.
It was Horton’s turn to earn a hat trick, as his three goals and one assist were mostly fed from Gaulke, who had a season-best five assists.
Passes also went to Leone, Garoafalo, Don Husted, Nate Bittel and John Melnik, who picked up one goal apiece. Zach Vivenzo earned a pair of assists as Alex Bittel joined Horton, Husted and Leone with single assists.
With those wins, the Warriors improved its record to 7-7-1 as it hosts four-time defending Division I champion West Genesee next Tuesday before a Jan. 25 trip to Cicero Twin Rinks to take on Fayetteville-Manlius.