Ben Patrizi emerged as the hero in Perry’s penalty kick win over visiting Gilmour Academy in a Division II sectional championship game on Monday.
Patrizi blocked Gilmour’s final attempt then scored the decisive kick to send the Pirates to the Mentor District tournament for the second straight season.
“It’s very exciting to not only make it to districts but in back-to-back years,” Perry coach Adam Wilson said. “This will only be our fourth trip in school history, so the boys understand this opportunity comes few and far between. We all understand how hard it is for any team to make it to this stage, so we use all of that as motivation moving forward.”
The fourth-seeded Pirates will travel to No. 1 West Geauga on Thursday.
Perry had defeated Gilmour Academy in the regular season, 1-0, but the Lancers learned from that setback and battled the Pirates to a 0-0 draw in regulation.
It remained scoreless through two overtime periods.
“Gilmour came ready to play and took it to us,” Wilson said. “They definitely did their homework and came with a plan in place that they implemented at a high level. We didn’t record a shot in regulation, but we made some adjustments and made a lot of strides in OT creating good chances and putting shots on goal, which really gave us the momentum heading into penalty kicks.”
Tyler Silvis and Landen Mayher both converted their PK attempts and Gilmour also converted on 2-of-4 tries heading into the final shot for both teams.
“Ben came up huge for us all night with save after save and even two in the shootout, so it was only fitting that he ended it,” Wilson said. “He’s had an incredible year and showed exactly what he’s made of in tonight’s game.”
The Pirates improved to 9-6-2 overall as they head back to West Geauga. The Wolverines edged the Pirates in their regular season matchup, 2-1, but this time Perry enters the match riding a wave of momentum.
“Excellent game from both teams,” Wilson said. “Gilmour had us on our heels for 80 minutes and didn’t let up. I’m extremely proud of how hard our boys pushed in OT against a very tough Gilmour team.”