The Black team, which had gone 4-3 in adult roller hockey league play this winter, upset the previously undefeated Grey team, the one featuring the league’s most outstanding player, Tyler Jarvis, 7-6, in the championship game at Sportime’s Arena in Amagansett on Feb. 25.
Jarvis, who oversees Sportime’s roller hockey leagues, was very much in evidence the night of the final, weaving in and out of traffic repeatedly on his way to the crease. But while the Grey team’s goalie, who prefers to be known simply as Dodge, could not shut Jarvis, who was to finish with a game-high 5 goals, down, he turned enough of Jarvis’s and his teammates’ shots away to prevail.
The Grey team had played the Black team once during the regular season, and Joe Ferraro said it was a rout, “something like 11-1, though we didn’t have our goalie that night.”
Dodge later said he hadn’t been at that regular season game because his wife had just given birth to twin sons, Bishop and Jacob, who are now 2 months old.
The Grey team’s goal was tended by 15-year-old Khloe Goncalves, of Springs, a national and regional age-group roller hockey champion who received special dispensation after having made her case with Jarvis.
“She’s phenomenal,” said Dodge. “She’s a national champion, which is saying a lot because there are tens of thousands of kids who play the sport in this country. Her positioning is sound, she knows where the net is at all times . . . the only way we were able to score on her was up top.”
Asked to compare goaltending in roller and in ice hockey, Dodge, who was reared in Seattle, and who has played goalie in ice hockey, said, “Tending goal in roller hockey is harder, absolutely, because there’s much more friction, limiting your ability to slide. It’s the difference between glass and mud.”
Still, he said, he loved roller hockey.
Obviously disappointed, Goncalves said, in packing her equipment bag, that she’d be back.
Jarvis broke the ice, as it were, with a wrist shot that beat Dodge to his glove side five minutes into the fray, but Justin Agnello tied it a minute and a half later, beating Goncalves high to the left side of the cage. James Keogh, who was to finish with 4 goals for the victors — thus earning the M.V.P. award from Dan Cebulski, the team’s senior player — put the Black team ahead 2-1 with 10 minutes to go until the break, by which time the score was knotted at 3-3, Patrick O’Sullivan and Jarvis having sandwiched goals around one by the Black team’s Mike Murphy.
The Grey team was presented with a man-up situation between the 5:19 and 3:19 mark, Ferraro having been escorted to the sin bin by one of the referees, Jim LaGarenne, but could not capitalize. With halftime nearing, Jarvis capped one of his frequent breakaways with a shot that caromed into the Grey team’s nets off the left post.
The Blacks carried it to the Greys from the get-go in the second 22-minute period, taking a 5-3 lead on goals by Agnello (assisted by Keogh) and by Keogh, who was assisted by Ferraro. Two more by Jarvis knotted the count at 5-5 with 13:45 left to play.
Keogh scored the next two, in the 35th and 36th minutes, treating the Blacks to a lead they would not relinquish during the remaining eight-plus minutes of action.
Some of the Greys complained that the first of Keogh’s aforementioned goals had been “kicked in,” but it was allowed to stand inasmuch as the puck had apparently caromed in off one of his skates while it was stationary and in contact with the playing surface.
Keogh’s winning score, with 8:14 to go, resulted from a one-on-one breakaway, which led Joe Horan, a spectator that night, to say later, in Goncalves’s defense, “If someone scores on you, that means five guys haven’t done their jobs.”
Jarvis did his best in the remaining minutes to overcome the 2-goal deficit, but, with the defense forcing him to shoot from the outside, by and large, could only (with Matt Rice assisting) get one back. Dodge made a nice save of a slap shot by Patrick Rice, taken from about 10 yards out with 15 seconds left, to nail down the championship.
“It was a team win,” Cebulski said after the celebrating. “And we beat them with one of our scorers, Austin Vecchio, missing. . . . The hardest part, of course, was defending Tyler.”
“He’s a dynamite player,” Dodge said of Jarvis, who, as usual, topped the stats list this season, with 26 goals and 17 assists, for 43 points, “but he does a good job of spreading the talent around among the teams.”
The next day, Brian Rubenstein, a member of the 3-4 Maroon team, said that while he often was the runner-up to Jarvis in roller hockey stats, “Tyler always has twice as many points as the rest of us.”
Matt Rice of the Grey team, with 11 goals and 13 assists, was this season’s runner-up to Jarvis. Rubenstein, with 13 goals and 8 assists, was third.