Rye storms past Shaker-Colonie
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Heading into the 2011 season, Rye's biggest question mark was right between the pipes.
Who would step up and replace standout goalie Aaron Rix?
On Friday evening at the Ice Hutch, first-year starter Aidan Talgo emphatically provided the answer. The junior goalie made 23 saves as the Garnets (1-0) cruised to a 6-1 season-opening victory over Section 2's Shaker-Colonie (0-1-3)
“I thought I played pretty well,” said Talgo, who was awarded with the game puck. “The defense helped me out a lot so I have to give a lot of credit to them.”
And he also gave credit to Rix.
“(Rix) was a good mentor and taught me a lot about work ethic and technique and how important they both are,” Talgo said. “I still talk to him a lot. He's at school in Denver, but we are still pretty close.”
As for the game, well, it was pretty much the opposite of close.
Rye — which grabbed a 1-0 first-period lead behind a goal from senior captain Ryan Rogers — broke it open in the early stages of the second period. The Garnets torched the Jets for three goals inside the first five minutes of action to extend their lead to 4-0.
Junior forward Chris Lipari (1G, 2A) sparked the surge, scoring off an assist from Rogers at the 13:42 mark. Sophomore forward Jack O'Brien (2G) then lit the lamp 28 seconds later off an assist from senior captain Kirk Holmes (1G, 1A). Rogers, who totaled a team-high four points on two goals and two assists, capped off the impressive three-goal run at the 10:37 mark off assists from Michael Bennincasa (2A) and Lipari.
“The second period is where we ran away with it,” said Rogers, who is well on his way to besting last year's 30-point campaign. “We had a lot of different goal-scorers and all three lines were generating offense.”
After outshooting Shaker-Colonie 10-6 in the opening period, Rye knew the goals were bound to come.
“The first period we had out chances, but we just couldn't get them in,” said O'Brien, who gave the Garnets a 6-1 lead with 9:14 left in the third period. “We came out of the first period looking to score a bunch of goals and we finally got them in.”
For Rye — which dropped a heartbreaker to Pelham in last year's Section 1 Division 2 title game — it was the ideal start to the season.
“Hopefully it keeps going on and we get better each game and we can make it back (to the sectional finals),” O'Brien said.
GAME NOTES: Rye fared well in its first game against an upstate squad, but things might get a little tougher next weekend. The Garnets are slated to travel upstate to take on Bethlehem and Glens Falls. Bethlehem edged Mamaroneck, 3-2, earlier in the season and Glens Falls upset Pelham, 6-5. Both games will act as litmus tests for Rye.
KEYS TO THE GAME
1. Speed kills: Shaker-Colonie learned this the hard way. Rye made up for its lack of size by skating circles around the Jets. The Garnets chased down every loose puck and showcased sharp stickhandling skills to dice up a Shaker-Colonie defense that always seemed to be a step or two behind. Rogers was especially impressive, owning the ice on each of his shifts.
2. Talgo looks the part: Judging by Friday's performance, Rye has found its goalie of the future in junior Aidan Talgo. And the first-year starter was at his best when the outcome of the game was still in question. Almost all of Talgo's six first-period saves were highlight-worthy, as he continually stuffed Shaker-Colonie on the doorstep.
3. Spreading the wealth: Four different Rye players lit the lamp against Shaker-Colonie, which speaks to the squad's overall depth. There wasn't too much drop off between any of the Garnets' three lines.
RYE (2:07) Ryan Rogers from Michael Bennincasa | 1-0 RYE
RYE (13:42) Chris Lipari from Rogers | 2-0 RYE
RYE (13:14) Jack O'Brien from Kirk Holmes | 3-0 RYE
RYE (10:37) Rogers from Bennincasa and Lipari | 4-0 RYE
RYE (14:25) Holmes from Lipari and Rogers | 5-0 RYE
SCL (10:58) Eric Egan from Mike Mineau | 5-1 RYE
RYE (9:14) O'Brien from Cal Hynson | 6-1 RYE
Shaker-Colonie: Eric Egan (1G); Mike Mineau (1A)
Rye: Ryan Rogers (2G, 2A); Chris Lipari (1G, 2A); Luke O'Brien (2G); Kirk Holmes (1G, 1A); Michael Bennincasa (2A); Cal Hynson (1A)
Shaker-Colonie: Kodi Riddell (10 saves, 3 goals against); Zach Dignum (11 saves, 3 goals against)
Rye: Aidan Talgo (23 saves)
Shaker-Colonie 6 7 11 24
Rye 10 11 6 27
* Email Isaac Cass at Icass@cablevision.com | Follow him on Twitter @MSGV_Icass *