From left: Eric Patterson, Michael Norris, Andy Waterlander, Jack Taylor, John McLeod, Jack Doran and Alex Spence. Front: Congressman Joe Wilson. (Community members listed in bold)
Despite 19-4 Win, Columbia Cyclones Fall 2 Goals Short of Playoffs In USA Hockey Nationals
For More Information: Contact Lezlie Patterson, team manager (803-518-4452 or firstname.lastname@example.org)
The Columbia Cyclones 16U squad gave the USA National Hockey Tournament something to talk about, despite falling two goals short of the playoffs, with a 19-4 victory in their final round robin game.
After losing its first two games to Maine and Arizona in Washington, D.C., the Cyclones faced elimination unless they defeated Louisiana by 17 goals.
Obviously, most thought the Cyclones were facing the impossible.
But when Eric Patterson scored 31 seconds into the game on an assist from Chip Ellis, fans began to wonder. When John McLeod scored 51 seconds later assisted by Ryan Rowe, then Blake Haggerty 1:33 after that off an assist by Patterson, fans were saying, “Can they actually pull this off?”
When the Cyclones led 13-3 at the end of two periods, the consensus was “Yes!”
The word began to spread, and fans from other teams began filing in to watch. Ellis scored six goals in final two periods, and Patterson scored his fourth goal of the game on an assist from Alex Spence with less than 4 minutes to play to bring the Cyclones within two goals of making the playoff round.
The Cyclones pulled their goalie in the final three minutes, but couldn’t get those last two goals. They won 19-4, setting a 2011 tournament record for most goals scored, and most shots – 71.
Eight players scored for the Cyclones, and 13 players had points in that final game.
Ellis led the scoring with 6 goals and an assist; Patterson had 4 goals and 3 assists. Spence had 2 goals and 3 assists; Rowe 2 goals and an assist; Austin Brown 3 assists; Elliott Wilch 2 goals. McLeod, Haggerty, Steele Drenning, Brenton Norton, Dylan Bryant, Will Painter and Jack Taylor also had points. Justin Krell, Richard Redd and Jack Doran contributed to the tough defensive play and Dan Cleary assisted the offense. Michael Norris and Andy Waterlander shared goalie duties.
Patterson led the tournament in points after the 3-game round robin play, with 6 goals and 4 assists. Ellis was fourth with 6 goals and 2 assists.
The Louisiana Ice Gators were gracious in understanding why the Cyclones had to try to win by 17 – they would have had to beat Columbia by 18 to make it to the playoff round.
Roster: The Cyclones team is comprised of players from throughout South Carolina, born in 1994 and 1995. Eric Patterson and Jack Taylor are from Chapin; John McLeod from Lugoff; Austin Brown, Alex Spence, Dylan Bryant, Justin Krell from Florence; Jack Doran and Will Painter from Columbia; Chip Ellis and Andy Waterlander from Charleston; Steele Drenning and Ryan Rowe from West Columbia; Brenton Norton from Lexington; Dan Cleary and Michael Norris from Irmo; Blake Haggerty from Aiken; and Elliott Wilch and Richard Redd from Augusta. Head coach Brian Bauman is from Columbia, assistant coach Bob Beesburg from Chapin and assistant coach Ron Norris is from Irmo.