Black Division Quarterfinals: NYCHC Takes Down Fairfield

by Justin Miller

The first game of the 2023-24 Empire Conference Black Division tournament featured #4 NYCHC taking on #5 Fairfield. Lucas Chaconas got Fairfield their first goal of the game, but they were outdone by NYCHC and Brandon Avezov in the period. Avezov tied the game with a toe drag move, scored the go-ahead goal with a top-shelf shot, and completed the natural hat trick with a forehand-backhand move. 

Down 3-1 to start the second, Zachary Pers buried a rebounded shot on a power play to get Fairfield back within one. However, the NYCHC offense took control yet again. Johnny Cotton and Jonas Passante scored nearly two minutes apart to take a commanding 5-2 lead in the game. Anthony DeFilio and Cotton exchanged goals in the final two minutes to set up a 6-3 game in the third. 

Fairfield was unable to mount any kind of comeback as NYCHC played their best defensive period of the game. Avezov scored his fourth goal of the contest in the third, cementing a 7-3 first round victory for NYCHC. They’ll take on the highest remaining seed in their semi-final matchup on Saturday. 

3 Stars of the Game

1. NYCHC, Brandon Avezov: 4 goals, 3 assists

2. NYCHC, Jonas Passante: Goal, 2 assists

3. NYCHC, Johnny Cotton: 2 goals