North Penn pounds Abing­ton

North Penn Life - - Sports - By An­drew Mar­cus amar­cus@mont­gomerynews. com

The North Penn ice hockey team is mak­ing a habit of mercy rules and pulled goalies. On Thurs­day Abing­ton be­came the most re­cent vic­tim of the Knights’ at­tack. The Gal­lop­ing Ghosts goal­tender was un­able to make it through the sec­ond pe­riod be­fore he was re­placed.

The new blood be­tween the pipes did not make a dif­fer­ence as the ref­er­ees called off the hounds with nine min­utes left in the game, for an 11-1 win at Win­ter­sports Arena.

For those count­ing at home, since a 4-3 loss to Soud­er­ton to start the sea­son, the Knights have scored 41 goals in five games. And clearly it is not one per­son, be­cause you do not av­er­age more than eight goals per game like they have done in that span be­cause of one su­per­star.

“We have a lot of guys that can put the puck in the net,” Knights’ coach Kevin saitis said. “We have a lot of tal­ent and when we get them go­ing things like tonight can hap­pen. We have a full team back and healthy and the last cou­ple of games we have been click­ing.”

How­ever, lead­ing the Knights in points and to a 4-1-1 record is ju­nior Chris­tian Ahn. Ever since a break­out post­sea­son last March, the cen­ter has been a cat­a­lyst in front of the net.

“Chris­tian came into his own against Penns­bury and Coun­cil Rock South in the Sub­ur­ban ieague play­offs,” saitis said. “He had seven goals in two games. That is when he came out of his shell. He is a great player. He is fast, phys­i­cal, strong, and he has great in­stincts. He is a ter­rific kid to coach.”

Ahn grew up in South Korea play­ing soc­cer, but was in­tro­duced to the sport he has grown to love by his cousin be­fore he moved to North Wales in fifth grade. His cousin, who is five years older, still plays pro­fes­sion­ally in South Korea.

“My cousin in­spired me,” Ahn said. “I have al­ways looked up to him. I used to prac­tice with him all of the time. But when I was in fifth grade was the last time I have seen him.”

Ahn has now been on skates for seven years and has had to work hard to be­come the player and leader he is to­day for the Knights. He re­mem­bers those days as a fresh­man with the Knights where ice time was lim­ited.

“I was rid­ing the bench fresh­man year,” Ahn said. “I was in­spired the first time I went to my cousin’s game. I have just worked hard to get bet­ter.”

Ahn and the Knights are tak­ing sat­is­fac­tion in be­ing unstoppable. But ex­pe­ri­ences such as last year when they played the Ghosts re­mind them to never feel com­fort­able and al­ways con­tinue to be the ag­gres­sor.

“iast year against Abing­ton we were down 5-0 be­fore we came back to win 12-5,” saitis said. “Tonight we pres­sured the puck in our own zone and did not give them time to set up. Once we get pos­ses­sion we can take off.”

So whether the score is 11-1 in early De­cem­ber or a nail-biter in March, this ex­pe­ri­enced group is ready to put their hard work to good use.

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