Seven teams crowned California Tier I state champions
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Six teams captured California Amateur Hockey Association Tier I state titles on Feb. 5 at The Rinks-Lakewood ICE, while one other was decided a week prior, also at Lakewood.
12U AAA Major – Anaheim Jr. Ducks
The Jr. Ducks used a two-goal performance from Joshua Niedermayer to down the Los Angeles Jr. Kings 4-1 in the championship final. Rocco Zimmerman and Colin Chon added one goal apiece and goaltender Dylan Silverstein posted the victory in net with a 15-save outing.
For the Jr. Kings, James Mastrosimone tallied the lone goal off an assist from Joshua Bonrouhi and Vincent Lamberti and Nicholas Avakyan shared time between the pipes.
12U AAA Minor – Los Angeles Jr. Kings
The Jr. Kings turned the tables on the Jr. Ducks in the 12U AAA Minor title game as Cullen Emery tallied a pair of goals to go along with two assists to lift the Jr. Kings to a 4-1 victory.
David Mnatsakanyan and Alexander Weiermair added single goals and Talen Garcia recorded three assists. Calvin Vachon picked the win in goal by turning aside 28 shots.
The Jr. Ducks’ lone goal was scored by Aidan Falvo and Miles Roberts and Sky Willer each saw time in the Anaheim crease.
14U AAA Major – San Diego Jr. Gulls
On Jan. 29, the Jr. Gulls opened the Tier I state tournament by taking the 14U AAA Major crown after a 4-1 win over the Jr. Kings.
Kyle Fraser, Maximillian Chu, Ethan Kuhrt and Samuel Deckhut scored and Hunter Garvey registered 20 stops in net.
“In the state playoffs, we got key contributions from every single player on the roster and were able to use our team depth to wear our opponents down, which is incredibly valuable in close games,” said Jr. Gulls coach Ross Carmichael. “We played strong in all three zones and had excellent goaltending.”
Parker Murray scored the only goal for the Jr. Kings and Alexander Bonrouhi made 17 saves.
14U AAA Minor – San Jose Jr. Sharks (top)
Sean Mentzer was the hero for the Jr. Sharks, scoring at the 9:22 mark of the third overtime to propel the Jr. Sharks to a 3-2 win over the Jr. Ducks.
Nicholas Cantor and Wes Turner scored San Jose’s first two goals, while Max Abene assisted on all three goals for the Jr. Sharks. Jackson Baker made 40 stops in net to pick up the dramatic win.
Benjamin Palmershiem and Brody Biller scored for the Jr. Ducks and goaltender Lucas Massie also finished with 40 saves.
15 AAA – Los Angeles Jr. Kings
Drew Vieten tallied two goals and an assist to lead the Jr. Kings past the Jr. Ducks 4-2.
Ian Krutchensky and Max Eckstein also scored to back Ronan Mobley’s 21 saves in the blue paint.
Kyle Baker and John Mulvihill scored for the Jr. Ducks and Ethan Lahmon turned aside 21 shots in the defeat.
16U AAA – Anaheim Jr. Ducks
Another three-overtime final saw Wyatt Wong win it for the Jr. Ducks in a 2-1 victory.
Jiyoon Chae posted the Jr. Ducks’ first goal and Jakob Wepman made 27 saves for the win in net.
Connor Kemp scored for the Jr. Kings and netminder Dustin Wolf finished with 30 saves.
18U AAA Major – Los Angeles Jr. Kings
Four different players – Wyatt Light, Auston Ghirardelli, Jared Christy, Lucas Bachofner-Binder – scored to guide the Jr. Kings to a 4-1 win over the Jr. Sharks.
Christy tacked on two assists and Jared Levine made 28 saves in goal.
Ryan Danner scored for the Jr. Sharks and Morgan Kelly stopped 42 shots between the pipes.
The Pacific District Tournament qualifiers are:
14U – Jr. Gulls, Jr. Kings, Jr. Ducks (in Anchorage, Alaska)
15U – Jr. Kings, Jr. Ducks, Jr. Gulls (in Las Vegas)
16U – Jr. Ducks, Jr. Kings (in Las Vegas)
18U – Jr. Kings, Jr. Sharks, Jr. Ducks (in Anchorage, Alaska)
The Pacific District Tournaments all run March 9-12.