MIDDLETOWN — The momentum swing delivered a shockwave to the gut of the Middletown North, a staggering blow to the belly of an Lions club that would have knocked a team with lesser intestinal fortitude to the icy canvas.
This third period goal by St. John Vianney standout John Gelatt knotted an anticipated Class A North bout at 1-1 with under six minutes remaining in regulation, sending a wave of jubilation through the Lancers bench and fan section…but High School North refused to be swept away by the tide.
Minutes later it was winger Chris Repmann who reached in and rescued Middletown from the swell, as Dan Quiles dug out a puck along the side boards and sent a bouncing pass into the slot that was settled by the emerging sophomore star and hammered past the opposing keeper for a late 2-1 advantage and the eventual game-winning goal in an upset that radiated through the Garden State’s scholastic hockey landscape.
“This was a really big deal for us, we were super happy,” said Repmann, who added an empty net goal to complete his three point evening in the 3-1 triumph over the Lancers. “We knew how good of a team they were, but I think it took until the next day at school when all of our friends and teachers were coming up to us that it really sunk in.”
Repmann was the big man on campus in Lions Country the following morning, and through the early portion of the Lions 2017-18 campaign, the sophomore has been a driving force at the heart of High School North’s offense, a role he continued shoulder against the Lancer’s with two goals and an assist in that 3-1 triumph over St. John Vianney, and another clutch performance against Manalapan to close out Week 4.
In this non-divisional tilt with the Braves, Repmann pumped life into a slow-to-start Lions attack when he notched two more tallies in a 3-2 victory that sent High School North into the holiday break with a record of 6-2-1.
“Middletown North has a history of being competitive year in and year out,” said Repmann, who earned SportsFood.com/Alite Flooring Player of Week 4 honors. “We’ve lost some great seniors last season, but we have younger guys who are capable of picking up the slack.”
“It feels good to be able to help my team so much. I was looking forward to seeing what we could do this year, and our first and second lines have really worked well together. We’re producing a lot of offense lately and it feels really good to put up numbers like that.”’
Repmann added his team-leading 11th goal of the season in a Dec. 29 victory over Rumson-Fair Haven and dealt out his 10th assists, bringing his club-best point total to 21 through 10 games.
THE FAN FAVORITE
The people have spoken, and they’ve made their voices heard in the favor of Ocean Township standout Dylan Haar.
In a Week 4 reader’s poll that saw nearly 11,000 votes cast, the junior forward garnered nearly 57% of the vote, or 6,001 total votes.
Haar earned his nomination by helping the Spartans to three Week 4 victories, including divisional wins over Red Bank Regional and Freehold Boro, and concluding triumph over local foe Howell, allowing Ocean Township to head into the holiday break with a record of 5-2-1, the club’s best start since the 2013-14 season when it finished 18-6-4 and made a run to the state quarterfinals.
Haar had a goal and an assist in the victory over Red Bank, before delivering his fourth career hat trick and second three-goal effort of the season in an 8-1 decision over Freehold.
STARS OF WEEK 4
Logan Beattie, Wall Township: The junior netminder steered aside 37 of 28 shots in 3-1 victory over Freehold Township, before stopping 32 of 34 to preserve a 2-2 tie with divisional foe St. John VIanney.
Deven Ralph, Middletown South: The senior had a goal and two helpers in a Class A North victory over Howell, and included in the three-point evening was his 100th career point.
Chase Dorworth, Rumson-Fair Haven: The junior notched his first career hat trick in a 5-3 victory over divisional foe St. Rose, lifting the Bulldogs to their first A-North win of the season.
John Gelatt, St. John Vianney: The junior centerman had goals in each of St. John Vianney’s three Week 4 games, including two tallies and four points in a 7-1 triumph over local parochial rival Red Bank Catholic, and the game-tying marker in 2-2 tie with Wall Township.
Michael Farinacci, Manasquan: The freshman had two goals and two assists in a 7-6 victory over Class A Central rival Central Regional, allowing the Warriors to remain as the division’s lone unbeaten team.
Thomas Swartwout, Brick Memorial: The junior defenseman was a two-way force in Week 4, notching five goals and five assists, including two tallies and three helpers in a 5-5 tie with crosstown rival Brick Township.
Matt Pousson, Jackson Memorial: The senior netminder stopped 25 of 27 shots faced in a non-divisional victory over Rumson-Fair Haven, before posting his fifth career shutout with 27 saves in a victory over crosstown rival Jackson Liberty.
Hunter Price, Brick Township: In Week 4 the senior was every bit of the two-way defenseman he’s billed to be, registering eight goals, including two hat trick efforts against Toms River South-East and Steinert.
Kyley Toye, Brick Township: The freshman standout logged her first career goal in a victory over Steinert, becoming the first female skater to deliver a goal for Brick Township since her mother — Cindy Acropolis-Toye — completed the feat in 1996.