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Tornado Midget teams wrap up second PHL event

By DJHA, 10/27/12, 9:15AM CDT


San Jose PHL Event


The NAPHL put on its second event of the 2012-2013 season over the weekend, held in San Jose, Calif. Both Texas Tornado Midget teams were there, playing in four regular-season games apiece at Sharks Ice. The event was hosted by the San Jose Jr. Sharks and featured eight teams from each Midget division. The Tornado PHL teams came out strong at the last PHL event, played in Blaine, Minn. in September, but weren’t able to exactly replicate that success in San Jose.


The 18U team did go 2-2 over the weekend, including a victory over the host team on Sunday. The 18Us opened up the event with two games on Friday, winning the first and losing the second. Cooper Cothran saw just 13 shots, stopping 12 in the Tornado victory. Later in the day, however, the Anaheim Jr. Ducks handed the Tornado a 6-3 loss. Gary Lassan, Chris Beck, and Tommy Dierl each picked up goals for the Tornado. On Saturday, the Tornado took one on the chin against the Pikes Peak Miners, dropping a 6-0 game. They rebounded on Sunday morning with goals in all three periods to beat the San Jose Jr. Sharks, 3-2. Austin Murray scored in the first period and Dustin Johnson followed suit in the second, but the Sharks answered with two goals in the third to tie it. Late in the period, Murray’s second goal of the game proved to be the game-winner, as the Tornado finished the weekend with a 2-2 record. With 14 points overall, the 18Us are tied with the California Titans atop the PHL Red Division.


The Tornado 16U team played the exact same teams as their 18U counterparts and came away with similar results. Logan Berloff’s hat trick combined with a shutout from goaltender Dylan Short gave the Tornado a 4-0 win over Pursuit of Excellence on Saturday morning. Unfortunately, the rest of the weekend did not go as smoothly. After a 5-1 loss to the Anaheim Jr. Ducks on Sunday morning (Jack Stensgard had the only Tornado goal), the team returned to the ice later in the day for a matchup against Pikes Peak. Berloff and Benjamin Allen scored to give the Tornado a 2-0 lead, but the Miners responded with three unanswered goals for the 3-2 win. On Monday morning, the 16U team finished the event with a game against the San Jose Jr. Sharks, which the Sharks won 5-3. Allen, Mark Sanchez, and James Distefano notched goals for the Tornado. The 16Us are in second place in the PHL Red Division with eight points.


Both teams will return to Blaine, Minn. in late November/early December when the PHL returns to Schwan’s Super Rink. Both the 18Us and the 16Us will play five games in Blaine next month.