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Hockey: 2017 South Season Recap

Written by Keith Barnes on .

There was one question spinning around the PIHL at the start of the Class 3A playoffs.

Who is Alex Wilbert?

In the end, he showed everyone who he was and led Peters Township to a state title in the process.

On a whim, Indians coach Rick Tingle replaced all-star goaltender Wesley Kaylor with the freshman Wilbert, who was a less-than-thrilling 2-3-1 with a 2.67 goals-against average and a .903 save percentage in six regular season games.

It might have seemed like a ludicrous move for a team that came in as the No. 6 seed and had a favorable matchup against Canon-McMillan, but since Peters Township had lost to the Big Macs late in the season, Tingle took a runner on his untested freshman and it paid off in spades.

In four playoff games, Wilbert went 4-0 with a 1.00 GAA, a shutout of North Allegheny and a stunning .964 save percentage as he stopped 108 of the 112 shots he faced.

He might have saved his best game for last as he stoned Holy Ghost Prep and halted 37 of 38 shots and William Barnes scored on the power play at 13:34 to give the Indians a 2-1 victory in the state finals.

Baldwin turned a few heads when it dropped down in classification to Class 1A and won the West Division, but the Highlanders stay in the postseason was short-lived as they were knocked out in the first round by Montour.