The Saratoga Springs hockey team found itself in an early hole that it couldn’t dig itself out of.
Section III champion West Genesee scored less than 30 seconds into the first period and pulled away with two third-period goals to defeat the Blue Streaks 3-0 in Sunday’s state Division I final in Utica.
Obviously, our goal was to get to the state championship, and we did, said Saratoga coach Mike Ricupero. `We were disappointed that we fell short, but I told the guys that we had nothing to be ashamed of.`
Goaltender Graeme Bulmer did everything he could to keep the Blue Streaks (19-5-1) in the game. The senior bounced back from West Genesee’s early strike and finished with 25 saves.
`Graeme played outstanding,` said Ricupero. `When the chips were down, he kept us in the game.`
Unfortunately for Saratoga, it couldn’t get anything going against West Genesee (25-0-0). The Wildcats allowed only 11 Blue Streak shots as they completed an undefeated season.
Saratoga advanced to the state finals with a 4-3 semifinal victory over Section V champion Pittsford Saturday.
Jimmy Murray scored the go-ahead goal late in the third period for the Blue Streaks. Stephen Cash, Cody Nizolek and Michael Layman also tallied for Saratoga.“
Associate editor/sports editor