Search ENP

Powered by Blogger.


Social Connect

Get it on Google Play

Upcoming Events

February, 2016:

Friday, February 20

ART247 Black and White Exhibition

March, 2016:

Advertise Your Event on ENP!
More info here

Saturday, November 15, 2014
The Lockport Express bested the Roc City Royals in the first Junior A hockey game played at the new Cornerstone CFCU Arena. (PHOTOS BY HEATHER N. GRIMMER / ENP PHOTOGRAPHER)


Tied at 2 at the end of the second period, the Lockport Express found their game in the final period on the way to a 7-4 victory over the Roc City Royals.

The 450-seat bleachers in Cornerstone Arena's main rink was near capacity, with the crowd having an obvious bias to the home team for the first time this season. Head Coach Frank Vecchio said the home crowd was a double-edged sword to start the game.

"I think some guys had some nerves," Vecchio said. "First game in the building. A lot of people. But it was a good atmosphere. Thank God we came out with the win."

The first Junior A goal scored at Cornerstone Arena was scored by
Frank Vecchio Jr., of the Lockport Express at 7:47 of the first period.
Vecchio's son, Frank Jr., opened the scoring in the game, scoring the lone goal of the first period on the power play at 7:47 of the first. Christian Whitcomb and Anthony Merante tallied assists on the goal.

Roc City tied the game in the opening minutes of the second period with a goal by Wesley Austin, assisted by John Melcher and Mason Versage at 1:29. Just under four minutes later - at 5:24 - Nick Siracuse put Lockport back up 2-1 with assists by Merante and Vecchio.

Siracuse had been in Michigan spending time with the NAHL Michigan Warriors but was back in Western New York for the weekend.

"It's always nice to have 'Cuse," Vecchio said after the game. "He's a horse. But it looks like he's going back to Michigan next week. They're going to give him a five-game tryout. See how he does."

In the waning seconds of the second period, Anthony DePetres tied it for Rochester. Austin assisted the goal at 19:57.

In the third, Lockport found their stride. Mark Friol scored first, at 0:54, asssted by Peter Guido. At 9:05, Merante made it 4-2, assisted by Vecchio and Siracuse. Just 23 second later, it was 5-2 on a goal by Michael Crissy, with assists by Daniel Golba and Gibson Stewart.

What was the difference? Speed, says the coach.

"We're built on speed," Vecchio said. "When we don't use it, we're not very good. When we do, we're tough to beat."

Roc City tried to climb back in it, scoring at 15:45 - a goal by DePetres, assisted by Austin and James Lockamyeir. But the Express answered a minute later on the power play. Dillon Hayes tallied the goal with an assist by Justin Durkee at 16:52. With the goaltender pulled, Roc City made t 6-4 at 18:51 on a power play goal by John Wise, assisted by Lockamyeir. But Syracuse landed an empty netter in the closing seconds, giving Lockport the 7-4 win.

The same two teams play again Saturday, this time in Rochester. Vecchio said the formula for victory will be the same. "Just try to get our guys to use our speed. For some reason, with this team we get caught up in trying to hit and hit and hit."

NOTES: Former Express goaltender Ian Stahl started in net for Roc City, stopping 34 of 40 shots. With the win, Lockport is now 12-6 on the season. The game started nearly an hour late because the officials couldn't find the arena.

Get the daily East Niagara Post email update.
Send an email to with "email update" in the subject line.


Post a Comment

Comments are always appreciated. Your comment will be reviewed for approval before being made public.