Randolph Advances to Sectional Final Behind Sharkey's Two goals

The Randolph Rams faced their toughest test of the season on Tuesday night at SportsCare Arena. They were going up against a strong Ridgewood team with one of the best goalies in the state. Jack Scali came into the game off a 42-save performance last week against Ramapo. Randolph was also unsure if they would have lead scorer Jase Zangara and both of the Melly brothers for the game due to injuries and illness. Prior to puck-drop, we got word that all three would play.

1st Period

With nearly a capacity crowd in attendance, it was time for playoff hockey in Randolph, New Jersey. Both teams approached center-ice with the crowd roaring, and we were underway! The Rams learned quickly that this Ridgewood Maroons team would be physical. 

The Maroons were great on the defensive end, and their star goalie, Scali, got in front of every shot on goal. A little over midway through the 1st period, the Maroons struck first. Jack Sherman found the back of the net off an assist by AJ LoSauro, giving Ridgewood an early 1-0 lead. 

The Maroons extended their lead late in the period, with AJ LoSauro as the catalyst again. LoSauro found Senior Tyler Fitts, who put one past Randolph Goalie John Krynicki to make it a 2-0 lead for the Maroons heading into the first intermission. This was the first time the Rams had been down multiple goals all year, and the players' frustration was evident as they skated into the locker room.

2nd Period

The 2nd period started with some hard-nosed, physical hockey from both teams. Both teams had players sent to the penalty box early on, but neither could capitalize. The turning point of the period and the game was when Ridgewood continued to be called for penalties. Not only did this give this Rams team multiple power plays, but it also forced Scali to take on more shots.

LoSauro and Finn Doherty were sent to the box within 16 seconds of each other, giving Randolph a huge 5-on-3 advantage. Jacob Campbell won the faceoff back to Andrew George, and the Randolph Junior fired a missile past Scali—putting the Rams on the board 2-1. Scali had nine more shots on him after the goal but stood tall and preserved the Ridgewood lead heading into the break.

3rd Period 

Ridgefield head coach Mike Lucchesi kept his team out on the ice during the intermission, trying to calm them down after a rough 2nd period. The Rams came out of their locker room with a lot more swagger now that they had broken the shutout. Their confidence paid off right away in the 3rd period, as they controlled the puck in the offensive zone and fired shots at Scali.

Another Ridgewood penalty paved the way for a Randolph power play. The Rams took advantage and tied the game up on a deflection goal from Sophomore Daniel Sharkey. Andrew George and Vinny Crisafulli were credited with the assist, and we were all knotted up at 2. 

Keegan Melly put Randolph ahead 41 seconds later, getting one by Scali off a feed from Zangara. The Rams had come all the way back to take a 3-2 lead with just under 12 minutes to go. 

Ridgewood needed to counter fast if they wanted to regain momentum and stay alive in the state playoffs. Doherty kept the Maroons alive, tying the game up minutes later, making it 3-3 headed down the stretch. \

With less than a minute to go, LoSauro almost sent the Maroons to the finals but missed high on a shot that got past Krynicki. The Rams retook the lead when Sharkey fired a wrister past Scali, giving Randolph the lead within 44 seconds left. The crowd erupted. The stands were shaking. It was an electric moment for Sharkey and one he and his teammates won't soon forget. Zangara added an insurance goal a few seconds later, sending the Rams into the North Sectional Finals to face Northern Highlands on Thursday.

3 Stars of the Game

3rd Star: Ashton Feinberg

After turning the puck over on the Ridgewood goal early in the game, the Senior Defenseman played a crucial part in holding the Maroons to just three goals. Feinberg got in front of multiple shots, including laying out to block one of them.

2nd Star: Andrew George

George got the party started for the Rams in the 2nd period, finding the back of the net late in the 2nd period. George was also credited with the assist on Sharkey's first goal that tied the score up at 2.

1st Star:: Daniel Sharkey

No surprise here. After deflecting in the game-tying goal early in the 3rd period, the Sophomore sent the Rams to the Section Finals, burying a wrist-shot past Scali with 44 seconds left in the game.