On Monday, November 6, the SAR Sting traveled to Paramus for a much-anticipated contest with the Frisch Cougars. Both varsity clubs entered the night with unbeaten, 2-0 records. The Sting had overcome Westchester and JEC by large margins, while the Cougars most recently defeated Kushner 6-0 and just squeezed by Ramaz 1-0 in their season opener.
However, Frisch had been without forward Joe Tropp for the first two contests, as he was recovering from a hand injury. Similarly, SAR lacked defenseman Efraim Herstic against the JEC Thunder, as he was out injured too. Despite past injuries, Tropp and Herstic returned to their respective teams on Monday night, and one of the undefeated squads was bound to take a loss.
The Sting exploded off the opening face-off, controlling most of the possession and setting an early tone for the rest of the game. SAR’s intense pressure was too much for the Cougars, as the Sting broke through early with a Jacob Nayowitz goal. Shortly after, the away team added to their lead with a Shua Friedman blast from the point to put SAR up 2-0. Frisch continued to be pushed back and was unable to settle in during the first period.
The second period didn’t change much, as the dominance for SAR continued. Frisch was hungry for anything that could spark a comeback, and after being given a power play, the Cougars were ready to eat. The power play was energetic for Frisch, but none of their numerous shots could find the back of the net. The momentum was quickly returned to SAR, and seconds after killing off the penalty the Sting netted another goal. The rampage persisted until the end of the second, and the Sting had tallied four goals that period, giving them a 6-0 lead going into the final 12 minutes.
SAR began the third sluggishly, as they thought they had put the game away for good. However, a Frisch surge quickly sliced the lead in half with a trio of goals in the beginning of the period. The Sting alertly rose from the dead, and another Shua Friedman goal put a nail in the coffin, ending the Frisch comeback and eventually the game at 7-3.
The main takeaways from the match were that SAR’s power play looked sharp, as they buried three of the Sting’s seven goals. Additionally, SAR proved they are a force to reckon with and that they are serious contenders. The Sting will be tested though, with upcoming dates with Rambam, TABC, Frisch and the defending champions DRS Wildcats.
On the flip side, the Frisch Cougars have work to do to patch up the holes that SAR exposed. Expect a closer contest next time the Cougars and Sting meet on November 27, as Frisch only faces Ramaz in between, and should be well rested and prepared for another war with their Bronx rivals.
By Henri Kolb