BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – A local high school hockey player had the game of a lifetime this week when he scored three goals in a span of just 23 seconds.
Jett Malczewski, a sophomore at Iroquois High School, recorded the incredible feat in the third period of a game at HarborCenter on Monday. His hat trick broke open a tie game and lifted Iroquois/Alden over Amherst, 7-3. Captain Sam Staerker helped set up all three goals.
“I just didn’t believe it,” Malczewski told News 4. “The energy from everybody from coaches to my linemates and teammates was amazing. The atmosphere was great. My passes from my linemates were just perfect. … Everyone was like, ‘save some goals for me.'”
Iroquois/Alden coach Duke Ziegler said he hadn’t seen anything like this in his 30-plus years of coaching.
“Some of the kids were saying, ‘change it up, Coach?’ I said ‘no, let them go’ after the the first one. ‘Change it up Coach?’ ‘No, let them go,'” Ziegler recalled, laughing. “I don’t think I’ll ever see that again. It’s just crazy.”
Chris Watson, a spokesperson for the New York State Public High School Athletic Association, said the organization doesn’t have records that specific. “But I can say this,” he added, “I’ve never heard of someone scoring three goals faster than that.”
The fastest three goals in NHL history were scored 21 seconds apart by Hall of Famer Bill Mosienko for Chicago in a March 1952 game against the Rangers. Center Gus Bodnar assisted on all three, earning the record for fastest three assists.
The only other NHL player to score three goals in under a minute was 10-time Stanley Cup winner Jean Beliveau, who did it 44 seconds apart in 1955. In recent times, Tampa Bay’s Brayden Point scored three goals 1:31 apart in November 2018.
Ziegler believes Malczewski’s incredible feat is worthy of bringing positive national attention to the sport, especially with the NHL paused due to Covid-19 and the league announcing Wednesday it will not send players to the Olympics.
“We’re trying to get it out. We’re pretty excited,” Ziegler said. “It’s good for the area, Buffalo high school hockey, it’s good for the districts, Iroquois and Alden. It’s just good overall.
“We’re hoping the networks will pick it up.”
Ziegler said the team was excited when ESPN’s John Buccigross tweeted about the feat.
“He puts a lot of time and effort into his skillset,” Ziegler said of Malczewski, who plays travel for the Buffalo Regals SCTA team, which competes against Canadian opponents. “I think he’s got some stuff that’s untapped. He can skate like the wind and his edgework and everything’s great. If he can just put the overall package of the game together he’s going to have something special at such a young age.”
Malczewski scored the first goal shortly after coming out of the penalty box, joining a rush and finishing off a pass from Kevin Rieman with 14:48 left in the game. On the ensuing faceoff, Staerker pushed the puck forward on a set play and Malczewski and Rieman were off to the races, scoring just six seconds later. (The NHL record for fastest two goals is four seconds apart.)
Amherst won the next faceoff but quickly gave the puck away. Defenseman Ethan Iozzia recovered it and sent it off the boards to Staerker, who banked a perfect pass behind Amherst defenders that Malczewski collected and fired past the goalie with 14:25 remaining, 23 seconds after his first goal.
Malczewski had one goal this season prior to Monday’s game. He was happy to share the credit with his Iroquois/Alden teammates, who currently sit in first place in ECIC II with a 3-0-1 league record (5-0-1 overall).
“My linemates,” Malczewski said, “they just put the put the puck in the right place and I got it to the net.”
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Nick Veronica is a Buffalo native who joined the News 4 team as the Digital Executive Producer in 2021. He previously worked at NBC Sports and The Buffalo News. You can follow Nick on Facebook and Twitter and find more of his work here.