In Play with Tom Markowski

C.C. ends four-game winless streak, hands Rochester United its first loss, 6-0

Hockey   | Tom Markowski

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Plymouth – Even the best teams go into a slump. Detroit Catholic Central won its first 10 games then scored just three goals in its next four games, losing three and tying the other.

Consider that slump over. History.

The Shamrocks stunned Rochester United by scoring three goals during a 1:26 stretch of the first period to take a 3-0 lead and C.C. never let up as it blanked Rochester (15-1-1) 6-0 in a showdown between the two top-ranked teams on Friday at Compuware Arena.

Forward Evan Rochowiak opened the scoring at 5:57 with a wrist shot that beat goaltender Jared Myers from the left slot.

Mitch Ossowski, a senior captain who hadn’t scored since before Christmas, got the next two from almost identical spots, in the high slot. The second came at 4:31. Brian Kearns assisted on both.

 “We ran into a slump,” C.C. coach Danny Veri said. “We had more intensity in practice. They wanted to prove something today.”

Spencer Wright stopped 20 shots to earn his second shutout of the season.

It was a bit of redemption for Wright. On Wednesday C.C. lost to Birmingham Brother Rice, 3-1, and Wright accepted the blame for not being at the top of his game.

“I’d like to have that second goal back,” he said. “I was just down on myself (afterward). We were in a kind of a funk. We weren’t scoring much. I felt I had to do something.”

Last weekend C.C. travelled to Indiana to play Culver Academy and lost 3-0 and 4-1.

After losing to Brother Rice the Shamrocks needed to get their mojo back with a win against the No. 2-ranked team, and Wright answered the call early.

Max Harper, one of Rochester’s top players, broke in alone on Wright with a chance to put his team on top just 1:35 into the game. Harper and teammate Marshall Bowery both have 59 points this season but Wright stood his ground.

“Oh sure, that was a big momentum swing,” Wright said. “That was my first shot. I saw him block the shot and come down the ice. I stayed with the shot fake and got my pad on it.”

C.C. is the defending Division 1 champions and Veri challenged his players after Wednesday’s loss. C.C. is a team with depth and experience, and Veri expected more than what he’d seen recently.

“It was definitely a big win,” Wright said. “Culver and Brother Rice are good teams. It’s a bounce-back win. Coach wanted to show we’re still the premier team in the state.”

C.C. did that. The Shamrocks had 32 shots, were the more physical team and they played three full periods.

Alex Kreutzer’s goal with 14.8 seconds left in the second period made it 4-0. Rochowiak scored his second to make it 5-0 and Nick Macari completed the scoring.

“We looked at our schedule and there was no way we’d run the table,” Rochester coach Craig Staskowski said. “As much as it was us struggling, give C.C. credit. We haven’t played a team that came into our zone like this. Spencer played really well. We had our chances and it started with that breakaway.”