The Hastings Raiders were stunned by the Rochester Century Panthers in a double overtime thriller in the Section 1AA quarterfinals.
The Panthers struck first early in the contest, as a Raider penalty led to a Century goal just 3:26 into the game. The Raiders would respond however, as alte in the first period, Connor Zgoda would score from Blake Vandehoef and Jon Harris to make it 1-1 after 1.
In Period 2, the Raiders would actually take the lead, with Vandehoef scoring on the power play 10:11 in, with Zgoda and Mark DeNoyer assisting. Two minutes later, it was Century scoring to tie it, and then they would take the lead three minutes later to lead 3-2 after two.
The Raiders backs were against the wall entering the biggest period of the year, and they would get a huge break, with one of the wackiest goals of the year. At 8:39 of the third period, Sawyer Zaruba would feed Connor Zgoda, who flipped the puck up into the air. Somehow, the puck landed behind the Century netminder and in the back of the net for the 3-3 tie. But Century wouldn’t let it stay tied for long, as they would net their third power play tally of the night at 12:45 to take a 4-3 lead. But, the Raiders showed no quit, tying the game with 1:14 remaining inr egulation when Vandehoef found a hole on the blocker side and put the puck past on a brilliant feed.
After nobody could find the tiebreaker, we went to overtime, where the Panthers outshot the Raiders 9-3 but Kody Niederkorn stood tall. So on to a 2nd overtime we went, and it was early in the session when the heartbreak arrived.
Rochester Century moved in on a 2-on-1 and despite the net coming off (which is a new rule where the play continues on a scoring chance) the Panthers found the back of the net, and beat Hastings 5-4.
The Raiders season ends at 15-10-1. Thanks to the seniors for their contributions.