YONKERS – Forget revenge.
Suffern couldn’t even get a goal against Scarsdale, falling to the reigning Section 1 champions 1-0 on Monday at E.J. Murray Memorial Skating Center.
It was the first win of the season for the Raiders.
The Mounties came in with all kinds of momentum after wins against Pelham, Fairport and West Genesee. And they had plenty of motivation after losing to the Raiders in the Division 1 title game each of the two previous seasons.
“Scarsdale hockey is going to be good no matter what now,” senior forward Stephen Nicholas said. “The past two years, a legacy was built. Our job is to keep it up.”
This win provided a jolt of needed confidence.
“We have played so poorly,” said Raiders coach Jim Mancuso, whose team is 1-2-1 on the season. “I knew one way or another we couldn’t continue to play that badly. We made a trip upstate over the weekend, and we didn’t win, but we could’ve won. It made a big difference. We came back here and played like a team.”
Suffern wasn’t awful.
The Mounties were on the puck most of the game and out-shot a Scarsdale team with limited experience by a 38-10 margin.
“It’s very frustrating to play a game like that,” senior forward Tim Patwell said. “We keep a team under 10 shots and lose. It comes down to the forwards putting the puck in the net, so this one is on us.”
Nicholas got behind the defense in the opening minutes of the game to give the Raiders a 1-0 lead with a smooth backhand finish.
“It was a perfect breakout pass from Jonathan Schwartz,” he said. “I saw the defenseman was taking away the middle, so I used what little speed I have and was lucky to get around him.”
Scarsdale goalie Sam Seltzer took it from there.
“We haven’t had a lead to start a game all season so the goal gave us a momentum boost,” he said. “It’s a huge win for us and gives us confidence for the rest of the season. We came together and showed our potential.”
Player of the game: He didn’t have to be spectacular, but Raiders goalie Sam Seltzer did come up with some impressive stops. The sophomore finished with 38 saves in his first varsity win.
“Sam isn’t very big so he doesn’t take up a lot of space,” Nicholas said. “But once that puck is shot, he is so quick and can be in any position in the net.”
Turning point: An interference call gave Suffern a power play with 9:29 to play, and the Mounties did apply some pressure, but Seltzer moved left to make one stop and right to dead end the rebound as the penalty expired.
Stat line: Suffern went 0 for 7 on the power play. … The rematch is Feb. 5 at Sport-O-Rama.
Quotable: “We don’t have many high-level, skilled players this season,” Nicholas said. “We have a lot of guys who are hard-workers.”