Even if it has to be done the hard way, it will be done
Scoring the first two goals of the match, Carl Michael Montano rescued the gold medal hopes of the Philippine men’s ice hockey team after pocketing the game-winning shot against Malaysia, Wednesday evening at the Empire City Mall in Malaysia.
The forward and the rest of the Nationals started strong in the first period, scoring two goals early. Nonetheless, captain John Steven Fuglister was given a game misconduct penalty that almost made it hard for the squad.
The Philippines turned this into motivation, scoring three goals after Malaysia took one back off that power play to push the lead to 5-1.
The hosts would not be pushed aside and cut the deficit to one, 4-5, to end the second period. The Malaysians then capitalized on another man-advantage to eventually tie the game with a Mohd Hariz Mohd Oryza strike.
The hometown team used the momentum to take the lead at 6-5, before Paul Gabriel Sanchez wrested the lead back for the Philippines on the strength of back-to-back goals. But the Tigers quickly equalized, as Chee Ming Bryan Lim scored.
There were no goals in overtime, sending the game into a shootout, despite three attempts from the Filipinos as opposed to the Malaysians’ solitary shot.
Team Philippines goalie Paolo Spafford played huge in the shootout, causing the shooters to miss the net. Lenard Lancero’s shot saw Tengku Azily Tengku Abdilah’s glove, but Montano would not be denied of the goal and the win.
The Filipinos have just a few hours to soak it in as they will go for the gold against Thailand, Thursday afternoon at 4:00pm.