|2015 commit Chase Berger (white) works around a Kirkwood defender during the MSCHA quaterfinals|
Chase Berger, a 2015 forward commit, helped his Saint Louis University High School Jr. Billikens to the Missouri state championship Monday night, the school's first, with a 2-1 overtime win over Christian Brothers College High School at the Scottrade Center, home of the St. Louis Blues.
Berger played an integral part in the title-winning goal. Via stltoday.com:
The championship actually came on the end of [Stephen] Lordo’s stick just 3 minutes, 18 seconds into overtime.Lordo, in case you didn't connect those gigantic dots, is the brother of Penn State defenseman Joe Lordo and is headed to Robert Morris on a lacrosse scholarship.
He slipped a shot past CBC goaltender Joseph O’Brien and into the Cadets' net to send everyone with anything to do with SLUH hockey into a championship frenzy.
“Our captain, our emotional leader Chase Berger threw a great puck at the net, he always makes a smart play,” Lordo said. “He just wrapped a gift right on the doorstep and I was able to hammer it home.”
Following a 19-5-2 regular season that led to a no. 2 ranking, SLUH was invited to the Mid-States Club Hockey Association's Challenge Cup playoffs (in Missouri, high school hockey, unlike most sports, is not sanctioned by the Missouri State High School Activities Association, but by the MSCHA) and swept through Lindbergh (8-4), Vianney (2-1) and Westminster (5-1) in a round robin stage on January 31st, February 2nd and February 4th, respectively.
In a best-of-three quarterfinal round on February 8th and 11th, the Jr. Bills took down Kirkwood by 5-3 and 6-1 scores, with Berger scoring twice in each game.
Then, in a semifinal rematch with Lindbergh, SLUH was backed up against elimination with a 4-1 loss in game one on February 21st, but bounced back to win 4-0 on the 23rd, followed by a 1-0 win in a 10-minute mini-game to decide the series. Senior captain Berger starred in game two with a natural hat trick, and assisted on the only goal in the mini-game.
“We were flat that first night, and the second night we came out and knew we needed to give everything we had so the fans had one more game to watch,” Berger said of the team’s mentality on Saturday night.Berger finished his high school season with 15 goals, while with his midget major team, the St. Louis AAA Blues, he led the Tier 1 Elite Hockey League in scoring with 66 points in 40 games. Berger plans to join the USHL's Tri-City Storm, which selected him in the 2011 USHL Entry Draft, next season (after receiving a two-game call-up this season). Two seasons later, he'll follow his brother - Princeton junior captain Jack Berger - in playing for Guy Gadowsky.
Berger’s only comment on to his twig work was, “They were getting pretty cocky on Twitter and other things so we came out pretty turnt.”