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Fenwick's Ben Kohen (left) and Joey Scorpio (right) celebrate after Kohen scored the first goal of the game in the first period during the Hockey City Classic game against St. Rita at Soldier Field on Saturday, February 9, 2013. | Michael Jarecki ~ For Su
Ben Kohen always looks forward to playing against arch-rival St. Rita. Who can blame him?
Kohen scored a hat trick, his second one of the year against the Mustangs, to account for all of the scoring as Fenwick came away with a 3-0 victory at the Hockey City Classic at Soldier Field on Saturday.
"The only feeling better than doing this here is if I could do it in the Kennedy Cup finals or the state finals,’’ Kohen said. "I think we will probably see them again down the road.’’
The No. 8 Mustangs (22-10-4) have won the last five Kennedy Cups, which determines the Catholic League champion, but have a very young team this year. Fenwick is the favorite to break that streak and the No. 4 Friars (34-10-5) have beaten the Mustangs in three of the four contests played between the two teams this season.
"We don’t want to make it easy on them; that is the main thing,’’ Fenwick coach Kurt Kabat said. "Ben is a strong and powerful kid who is capable of having a big game and he certainly did tonight.’’
Kohen scored a goal in each period. His first one came from the right circle as he fired a wrist shot past Mustang goalie Marty Napleton. The second one came from right out front on a nice feed from Paul O’Toole as Kohen beat Napleton to the glove side.
Kohen then finished the hat trick with 1:47 left to play as he tipped in a perfect feed from Joey Scorpio. He was mobbed by his teammates but only had one hat thrown on the ice by Fenwick’s equipment manager. The fans were too far from the rink to participate in the traditional celebration of throwing hats on the ice when one player has scored three goals.
"What a great pass by Joey,’’ Kohen said. "He put the puck right there for me.’’
The shutout was split between Zach Danna and Pino Barker, who worked the final two periods. Barker stopped 21 shots including some close calls in the third period when the Mustangs dominated play by outshooting the Friars 12-2.
"A few of those shots I didn’t think that I got them,’’ Barker said. "It was so exciting playing here. I’ve never done anything like that before.’’