One goal closer to UCHC championship with 8-1 win over King’s College

Wilkes went into its game versus King’s College 12-3 on the season and came out 13-3 with an 8-1 win over the Monarchs.  With the United Collegiate Hockey Conference Championship in mind, the Colonels are one goal closer to making that dream a reality.  

“We have a level and a standard in which we try and play,” said head coach Tyler Hynes.  “Coach Bombardier and I were just concerned with making sure we stayed at that level and I think we did a really good job at that.  That shows maturity in this team.” 

The Monarchs suited up a majority of their team to take on the No. 8 ranked Wilkes men’s ice hockey team on Jan 28. 

In the first period, King’s and Wilkes went back and forth with the puck, unable to get points on the scoreboard. 

Wilkes made quite a few shot attempts on King’s goalkeeper Matt Bidini, but did not convert.  This led to many face-offs, which were won by the Colonels. Wilkes reset their offense on one of the face-offs and senior Michael Gurska passed the puck to senior Nick Fea who assisted sophomore Jimmy O’Kane at the 11:25 mark, making the scoreboard read 1-0. 

“The first goal definitely felt good,” said O’Kane.  “Our line was all over them and Mike (Gurska) had a good shot that I was able to get a stick on.”

The Monarchs tried to get a quick shot off right after Wilkes scored, but senior goaltender Nico Pidro saved the attempt.

Wilkes controlled the puck and stayed on offense for the majority of the first period with 33 shot attempts to King’s eight. 

The second period began with more Colonel puck control, leading to a goal by senior Jay Gallagher four minutes into the period after a rebounded shot by senior Dylan Kuipers. One minute later, Fea scored off of a pass from O’Kane, making the score 3-0 over the Monarchs.  

“Scoring a goal in any rivalry game makes it extra special,” said Gallagher.  “We knew we had the speed to take over the game.”

The Colonels played a fast game on the ice, keeping the Monarchs on the edge of their skates as two minutes after Fea’s goal, senior Donald Flynn found senior Tyler Barrow for another goal on a power play.  

King’s could not keep up with Wilkes’ quick-play strategy.  At the 9:38 mark, Fea converted another goal for the Colonels making the score 5-0.  

“I feel like we are the fastest team in this league,” said Hynes. “We feel like another team is going to have to prove us otherwise to say we are not.  I could just keep complimenting this team all night right now with how they are playing.”

The aggressive rivalry between the Barre led to a fight on the ice.  King’s was charged with a penalty and Wilkes went on a power-play run, but Flynn picked up a penalty as well.  Both teams had four players on the ice along with goalkeepers.  The penalty clocks ran out for both teams and five skaters returned to the ice for the Colonels and Monarchs.  

Wilkes’ graduate student Xavier Abdella picked up a cross-checking penalty moments later, but the Colonels stopped the Monarchs with their four defenders.  The power play ran out for King’s and it was 5v5 again on the ice.  King’s Aaron Frenkel was able to sneak one in with 4:30 left on the clock.  The eventful second period ended with a 5-1 score.   

Fea started off the third period with a hat trick goal at the 1:01 mark.  

The pace of the game began to slow down, but a King’s 10-minute misconduct penalty led to another Fea goal at 6:21 mark on a power-play assist by Gurska.  The score was 7-1. 

“It felt good to put a couple in,” said Fea.  “It would not have happened without my line-mates.  It was nice to get another win in the state of PA.”

After Fea’s fourth goal, King’s put Nick Konkel in goal in an attempt to stop the Colonel offense.  However, this change was unsuccessful as sophomore Jack Lane scored six minutes later bringing Wilkes to 8 goals.  

Wilkes’ defense and goalkeeper Pidro kept the Monarchs from getting the puck in the net, even with multiple Colonel penalties and fewer skaters on the ice.  The final score of the game was 8-1 and Pidro ended the game with 20 saves. 

“Nico Pidro, if I do not start there, then I am not doing my job right,” said Hynes.  “He has just stepped in and for a young man who had not gotten a lot of opportunities, talk about being ready for the opportunity when it comes, he is ready for it.  Our guys believe in him and I think he has made a believer out of everybody.” 

While King’s looked sharp on the ice with their new uniforms, they were not sharp enough to gain a win over Wilkes.


Nick Fea preparing to score
Photo: Ariel Reed