Hockey: Upper Arlington Golden Bears fall in state semifinal

Dave Purpura
ThisWeek group

Other than the final margin, Upper Arlington hockey coach Hamish Baird felt a state semifinal against Lakewood St. Edward on March 13 bore an overwhelming resemblance to the two regular-season meetings they split by a combined three goals.

Ultimately, turnovers at the blue line and a shorthanded goal helped the Eagles end the Golden Bears’ deepest tournament run in 14 years with a 3-0 win at OhioHealth Ice Haus.

Upper Arlington's Noah Domagalski hits St. Edward's Ryan Dunn into the boards during a state semifinal March 13 at OhioHealth Ice Haus. The Golden Bears lost 3-0.

“They’re a fast team and obviously a very good skating club. We hung in there and had a couple turnovers that cost us and we couldn’t get the puck in the net. With a lucky bounce, maybe it’s a different game,” said Baird, whose team finished 22-10-0-3. “It was a battle back and forth (just like the earlier games). They move the puck well and that created opportunities for them.”

St. Edward, which improved to 25-3-2 and will play Toledo St. Francis in the state final March 14 at the Ice Haus, outshot UA 23-19. Bears goalie Garrett Alderman stopped the Eagles’ first nine shots before Jack O’Sullivan blocked a Rory Brennan shot, raced the other way and buried a shorthanded goal to Alderman’s left 4 minutes, 41 seconds into the second period.

“The defenseman was kind of fiddling with it so I decided to go attack him. I got down and got a really good bounce off my pad,” O’Sullivan said. “Luckily I got the shot off on time because the other (defenseman) was coming down on me fast. It was a good start.”

Jack Mansour gave St. Edward a 2-0 lead in the final minute of the second period, and the Eagles capped the win with Lucas Newton’s empty-net goal with 1:13 left.

UA, which was 10-0-1 in its previous 11 games, was playing in its first state tournament since 2007. St. Edward had not been to state since 2012.

“This was the most evenly matched game we had against them,” Alderman said. “That’s a really good hockey team ... but I couldn’t be more proud of our group of guys.”

dpurpura@thisweeknews.com

@ThisWeekDave