Great Scott!
Butler senior enjoys 5-point night against P-R as Tornado hockey team snares 6-3 victory

By Derek Pyda 
Eagle Staff Writer 

MIDDLESEX TWP — Connor Scott is used to being in the middle of so much of Butler’s offense. 
Why should Senior Night be any different? 
The senior forward tallied a pair of goals and three assists Tuesday in Butler’s 6-3 victory against Pine-Richland at Ice Connection. 
Scott leads the Golden Tornado in goals (17) and assists (22). His latest effort helped Butler (11-7-1) jump ahead of Seneca Valley (11-8) for fifth place in the PIHL Class AAA standings. 
“I often find it hard to put into words how important Connor is to the team,” said Butler coach Patrick Hammonds. “He helps us build energy on both offense and defense and he is so competitive.” 
Scott’s first score jump-started a 3-goal first period for the Tornado. He stole a pass in his own end, skated the length of the ice and deposited the puck behind Rams’ goalie Anthony Szafranski with 3:14 off the clock. 
Scott later assisted on Trevor Gilliland’s goal and Ronan Miller also scored as Butler had the Rams on the ropes after 17 minutes of play. 
“We play the system well,” said Scott. “We enjoy playing it and are able to capitalize on our chances.” 
Gilliland made it 4-0 with a short-handed goal early in the second period before Pine-Richland fought its way back into the game with scores from Jack Drury and Nate Carnovale. 
But just over three minutes later, Butler went on the power play thanks to a cross-checking penalty on the Rams’ Andrew Rossi. Jonathan Fair made the most of the opportunity, scoring on Ben Stauffer. Scott added his second goal just 16 seconds before intermission, handing a 6-2 edge to Butler
“Two goals like that take the wind out of your sails really quick,” said Pine-Richland coach Brian Miller. “We knew they would be on the power play at some point and were unable to take advantage of the penalty kill.” 
Matt Cole scored for the Rams with 6:25 left in the game, but his team’s long odds of coming back became even more slim when Butler was awarded a 5-on-3 for a minute and 23 seconds beginning at 5:40
Zach Schnur stopped 14 shots in net for Butler. Szafranski (eight) and Stauffer (15) combined to make 23 saves for the Rams. 
Fair, Gilliland, Ryan Rebmann and Sam Gross each added one assist for Butler
January was a rough month for Butler, which lost four straight games to playoff-bound teams. But the Tornado have now won three of four and will look to close the regular season with a win over Shaler next Tuesday. 
“Consistency is the key and sometimes, it’s hard to maintain,” said Hammonds. “It’s that time of the year when teams are buckling down and trying to position themselves for the playoffs. That four-game losing streak was a wake-up call for us.” 
“The game against Shaler is big because we want to build momentum entering the playoffs,” said Scott. “We had it going into the playoffs last year and look at the run we had (reached the Penguins Cup final). We want that home-ice advantage in the first round, so we need to finish in the top four.” 
There will be no postseason for the Rams, who fell to 3-16 with Tuesday’s defeat. 
“We have 12 seniors, so we have a lot of youth coming up,” said Miller. “We want to get a fresh mindset on the varsity team.”