WAYNE — Not even five minutes had gone by following Glen Rock’s 2-0 win over St. Joseph in the Freedom Cup final, giving the Panthers the Cup three-peat, before coach Sergio Fernandez was already looking ahead.
“It hasn’t really sunk in yet, but I think as [Ramsey coach] Bob [Toy] can tell you, the goal is to get to The Rock,” Fernandez said, indicating Glen Rock’s goal of reaching the Public B final at Prudential Center in a few weeks.
“That’s not to say we don’t consider this important. Winning these is not easy to do, especially against such a well-coached and talented team like St. Joe’s.”
Though Glen Rock has had the Green Knights’ number for the last three years — 8-0-1, including wins in the past two Cup finals — it’s not always easy beating a quality team three times in the same season.
“St. Joe’s is a great team, but of course it helps us knowing we haven’t lost to them yet,” said senior Brendan Rosario, who struck for both Glen Rock goals Friday night.
“It’s going to come eventually and this streak against Joe’s will end … but we weren’t about to let that happen [Friday] on our watch.”
After Glen Rock dominated possession and the shot advantage in the first, 16-3, Rosario got the Panthers on the board with 1:10 remaining in the opening period off assists from Colin Morrow and Griffin Meyers.
“That was sweet for Brendan,” Fernandez said of Rosario, who tacked on an unassisted empty-net goal at the buzzer, his 15th of the season, to ignite the on-ice celebration.
“He started for us a lot as a freshman and he’s been a part of so many important games for us. To be a part this program and a part of three Cup wins, he’s really been tremendous for us.”