The Section 1 champions Rye Garnets suffered a 5-3 loss to the Section 2 champions Queensbury Spartans Saturday.
Rye started off on a positive note in the regional championship game played in front of a rowdy, packed house at Playland Ice Casino.
Paul Mundinger scored early to give the Garnets a 1-0 lead. But the Spartans answered back with two more goals before the end of the period.
"We got off to a good start and it kind of got out of hand from there," said Rye Coach Jason Friesen.
Rye found the Queensbury scoring spurt too much. "We weren't able to control it," he said.
Queensbury continued to dominate in the second period, with a goal less than a minute in for a 4-1 score.
The goal led to a spirited period full of tough defensive play on both sides.
Rye did their best to control the momentum but the team could not get the puck past the Spartans' defense.
The Garnets skated the puck into Spartans' territory, but the Spartans would quickly take it back to the other end on several occasions.
Rye tried to break into the opposition's zone and steal the puck back in order to get a shot on net.
"One of the things we kept trying to do was a four check to limit the transition through the center of the ice," Friesen said.
The Garnets had difficulty with this until the final period of play when they were more in control.
In the third period, Rye finally began to regain the same ground they had in the first period.
Attempting to make a comeback, Taka Katsuta started things off right for the Garnets with a goal down the left side of the boards at 10:24. Mundinger contributed the assist.
Mundinger then tallied another goal at 8:02, putting the Garnets to within one point of a 4-4 tied score.
But the Spartans struck again, scoring two more goals before the end of regulation for the 5-3 regional championship victory.
"They are a good team," Friesen said about the Spartans. "It's the reason they're in games like this."
The Garnets had 20 shots on goal compared to the Spartans 50. Garnet Goalie Aaron Rix tallied 45 saves, the majority of them coming in the second and third periods.
Rye finishes the season at 15-6-3. Three seniors—Mundinger, Katsuta and Brian Powers—played their last game Saturday night.