It may still be early but it’s also late enough so that there are some things to be looking at.
As you may know, there are three equally-weighted criteria that go into the formula that determines playoff position. NEPSIHA and Div. I winning percentages are easy to see and easily calculated. But the third criterion is the one that I believe will make the difference this year – that is, strength of schedule and how well a team does in its games against better teams. (In mathematical terms, percentage of games played against Div. I teams with a winning percentage of50% or better times winning percentage in such games.) It’s that third criterion that will make it difficult for a team like Canterbury to sneak into the playoff picture – even if they continue to win. Right now, Canterbury is winning 78% of their NEPSIHA and Div. I games, but it has played very few games against teams with winning records and it is only .500 in those games. Taft, by contrast, has "only" a 72% winning percentage, but it has played 86% of its games against winning teams and has won two-thirds of those games. That strength of schedule will serve Taft well as the season moves on, assuming, of course, that they continue to win. The Rhinos certainly made a statement this week.
In the east, where the playoff race will be even closer, one difference maker may be Andover's schedule. They have the toughest remaining schedule of any team currently in contention. If they win consistently, they will be in a position to jump over other teams and also get a better seeding because of strength of schedule.
One wild card in all of this is that while some teams do not currently have a winning percentage, they may, by the end of the season, have one. If St. Seb’s and Milton, for example, improve and get to .500, that will help a number of teams that were lucky enough to play them during their struggles.
As we said, it’s still early in he projecting game. Things will be clearer around the beginning of February, both in terms of positioning and who will need to do what in order to make the playoffs. For now, though, keep an eye on that third criterion. When it comes to prep hockey, some wins are more valuable than others.
Mon. Jan. 31
BB&N at St. Paul’s, 3:45
Gunnery at T-P, 4:45
Salisbury at Berkshire, 4:00
Williston at Westminster, 4:30
Lawrence at GDA, 6:00 (makeup of 1/26 game)
Brewster at Andover, 4:15 (makeup of 1/26 game)
Jacobs Wins 500th
Ashburnham, Mass. – Cushing Academy head coach Steve Jacobs earned his 500th career win today as the Penguins blanked Phillips Exeter, 3-0.
At the final buzzer, the Cushing players mobbed Jacobs on the bench, and a brief ceremony followed on the ice.
Afterwards, Jacobs, who is in his 20th year as head coach, saluted Bill Troy, his assistant for the past 15 years “for the passion he’s brought to the program.” Jacobs also saluted the program's support staff and, of course, the many players who've worn the Cushing uniform. When it was pointed out that 500 wins comes out to an average of 25 a year for two decades, Jacobs replied, “That just means we’ve had great players here.”
Jacobs also had praise for his current team. “I love the team I have right now,” he said. “Our goals don’t come easy but they have a great team attitude, a great chemistry. It makes it a fun team to come and work with every day.”
Win #500, versus an Exeter team that had beaten them 4-1 back on December 11, was a solid, workmanlike effort. The Penguins outshot Exeter 33-14, scored one goal in each period, and got a shutout from junior goaltender Richard Bachman. Cushing was whistled for just three penalties in the game, while Exeter had seven called against them.
Cushing got on the board just 1:55 in when the visitors turned over the puck in the neutral zone and junior Damen Nisula took it in alone, sliding a backhander past Exeter goaltender Chris Mannix for an unassisted goal that made it 1-0.
In the second, with Cushing on the powerplay, junior Tom Bardis made a nice pass, right to left across the top of the goalmouth, finding the stick of junior Aaron Bogosian who buried it to put the hosts up 2-0 at the 3:29 mark. Broc Little also picked up an assist on the play.
In the third, Cushing picked up their third and final goal when a bad Exeter turnover in their own end put the puck on the stick of senior forward Pat McLaughlin, who fired it by a surprised Mannix at the 11:38 mark.
“We played solid in all phases of the game,” Jacobs said. “We played great D, had the edge in territory, and got good goaltending. It was an important win for us against a good team.”
Notes: Northeastern-bound PG Steve McClellan, a converted defenseman who had been moved up to forward this season and never looked totally comfortable there, was back patrolling the blueline today.
In Jacobs’ 19 seasons, his teams have never had a losing season, and in all but one season have reached the final eight. Twelve Cushing teams have reached the final four, and five have reached the title game. Two Cushing teams have won prep championships, in 1996 and 1998. The Tom Poti-Ryan Moynihan-Bobby Allen-Joe Exter led team of 1995-96, which went 35-1 was the best Cushing team we’ve ever seen, and one of the great prep teams of all time. Jacobs coaching record is now 500-90-23.
Fri. Jan. 28
Bridgton at NMH, 4:00
Tilton at GDA, 5:30
Proctor at KUA, 3:00
Nobles at Brooks, 5:30
Thayer at St. Sebastian’s, 4:15
Sat. Jan. 29
Avon at Choate, 6:00
Berkshire at Winchendon, 4:30
Deerfield at Hotchkiss, 3:30
Exeter at Cushing, 4:00
GDA at Milton, 7:00
Holderness at Salisbury, 5:30
Lawrence at St. Paul’s, 3:00
Loomis at Andover, 4:30
Pomfret at Canterbury, 4:00
South Kent at NSA, 7:00
Tilton at Bridgton, 3:00
Trinity-Pawling at Taft, 4:00
Westminster at Kent, 2:30
Williston at AA, 2:00
Brooks at BB&N, 2:30
Berwick at Belmont Hill, 2:00
St. George’s at Nobles, 2:00
Sun. Jan. 30
Albany Academy at Millbrook, 1:00
Holderness at Choate, 12:00
South Kent at Northwood, 11:15 am
Taft at NMH, 1:00
Winchendon at Canterbury, 1:00
Mon. Jan. 31
BB&N at St. Paul’s, 3:45
Gunnery at T-P, 4:45
Salisbury at Berkshire, 4:00
Williston at Westminster, 4:30
Lawrence at GDA, 6:00 (makeup of 1/26 game)
Brewster at Andover, 4:15 (makeup of 1/26 game)
The list of makeup games is long this year, and, as dates are added in the wake of the snows of Jan. 8, 22, and 26, it will get longer yet. Please send any additions to information (at ) ushr.com
Thurs. Jan. 27 – Loomis at Avon, 4:30 (from 1/26)
Thurs. Jan. 27 – Westminster at Deerfield, 5:00 (from 1/26)
Mon. Jan. 31 – Lawrence at GDA, 6:00 (from 1/26)
Mon. Jan. 31 -- Brewster at Andover, 4:15 (from 1/26)
Thurs. Feb. 3 – Canterbury at Berkshire, 3:45 (from 12/6)
Sat. Feb. 5 – St. Sebastian’s at Nobles, 3:00 (From 1/26)
Tues. Feb. 8 -- New Hampton at Berwick, 3:45 (from 1/26)
Fri. Feb. 11 – Berkshire at Pomfret, 4:00 (from 1/26)
Sat. Feb. 12 -- St. Paul's at Thayer, 2:10 (from 1/26)
Mon. Feb. 14 – Kent at Salisbury, 4:15 (from 1/22)
Mon. Feb. 14 – Westminster at Loomis-Chaffee, 4:45 (from 1/22)
Thurs. Feb. 17 – Proctor at Berwick, 3:30 (from 1/12)
Sun. Feb. 20 -- Choate at Deerfield, 2:00 (from 1/22)
Mon. Feb. 21 – South Kent at Cushing, 4:00 (from 1/22)
Mon. Feb. 21 – Nobles at Lawrence, 4:00 (from 1/21)
Fri. Feb. 25 – Kingswood-Oxford at Portsmouth Abbey, 4:30 (from 1/8)
Fri. Feb. 25 -- GDA at Pomfret, 7:00 (from 1/8)
A winter storm watch has been issued for Eastern Mass. for today, and a snow advisory is in effect for much of the rest of New England. 3" to 7" of snow is expected. Please e-mail any cancellations/postponements to email@example.com Thank you!
Bridgton at Holderness, 3:15
Choate at Trinity-Pawling, 4:00
Cushing at NMH, 2:30
Hotchkiss at Canterbury, 2:30
KUA at Exeter, 4:30
Lawrence at GDA, 4:45
Salisbury at Gunnery, 4:30
St. Paul’s at Thayer, 4:00
St. Sebastian’s at Nobles, 5:00
Taft at Kent, 2:30
Tilton at Winchendon, 3:00
Westminster at Deerfield, 2:30
Williston at Millbrook, 4:00
Portledge at Albany Academy, 5:00
Brewster at Andover, 3:30
Loomis at Avon, 2:45
Hebron at Belmont Hill, 4:30
Berkshire at Pomfret, 3:30
Wyoming Seminary at South Kent, 3:30
Rivers at Roxbury Latin, 2:00
Vermont Academy at Proctor, 3:00
Worcester Academy at Groton, 3:00
New Hampton at Berwick, 3:30
Hoosac at Harvey, 4:00
Pingree at Portsmouth Abbey, 5:00
Note: We're looking for any makeup dates for games that were wiped out by the snowstorms of Sat. Jan. 8 and Sat. Jan. 22. Please email any updates to firstname.lastname@example.org Thank you!
Weather Strikes Again
Update 12:30 pm: The National Weather Service snow advisory for the Connecticut River Valley has been cancelled. However, it's still snowing in Eastern Mass. and Rhode Island, where a winter storm warning remains in effect.
St. Paul's at Thayer, postponed.
St. Sebastian's at Nobles, postponed.
Westminster at Deerfield, postponed to Thurs. 1/27 5:00 pm at Deerfield
Hebron at Belmont Hill, cancelled.
Loomis at Avon, postponed to Thurs. 1/27 4:30 pm at Avon.
Lawrence at GDA, postponed to 1/31 6:00 pm at GDA
New Hampton at Berwick, cancelled
Brewster at Andover, cancelled
Note: Please e-mail us with any postponements/cancellations and we'll post it here. E-mail address is email@example.com
1/22/05 Updated 1:45 pm
Storm Cancellations, Postponements, and New Start Times
With a storm expected to arrive in New England this afternoon, there have been some schedule changes. This is what we have so far. There may be additional cancellations we don't know about, so please check with the schools before heading out.
Sat. -- Kent at Salisbury has been postponed. The game will be made up Mon. Feb. 14 at 4:15 pm.
Sat. -- Belmont Hill at St. Paul's cancelled; no makeup date yet available.
Sat. -- Gunnery at Williston cancelled.
Sat. -- South Kent at Cushing has been postponed until a later date.
Sat. -- Westminster at Loomis game has been moved up from 7:00 pm to a 4:30 start. Scratch that: THIS GAME HAS NOW BEEN CANCELLED.
Sat. -- Choate at Deerfield has been moved up from 6:00 to 4:30. THIS GAME HAS NOW BEEN CANCELLED, too. (Likely makeup date: Feb. 20)
Sat. -- NMH won't be making the trip to Exeter, so Exeter will be heading out there to get the game in.
Sat. -- Trinity-Pawling at Hotchkiss has been cancelled; new time and date to be announced.
Sat. -- Berkshire at Avon has been postponed; new time and date to be announced.
Sat. -- Rivers at Berwick has been postponed; new time and date to be announced.
Sun. -- Tomorrow's Lawrenceville at Taft game has been cancelled and will NOT be rescheduled.
Note: Yesterday's Nobles at Lawrence Academy game was postponed due to severe cold in the Lawrence rink (!).
Please email any schedule changes/cancellations/postponements etc. to firstname.lastname@example.org -- we do not want our readers bombing up and down New England highways for no good reason! Thank you!
Ward Kicks out 43 Shots to Lead Andover Past Nobles
Dedham, Mass. – Andover, behind goals from Kevin Maresco and Chris Cahill and a 43-save effort from junior goaltender Matt Ward, edged host Noble & Greenough, 2-1, this afternoon.
Both teams needed this win, as Andover was coming off yesterday’s 6-1 loss to Thayer, while Nobles was coming off a 3-1 loss to St. Paul’s on Wednesday.
Both teams had a ton of chances today, and the game could have gone either way.
There was no scoring in the first period, though both junior Ryan Maguire and freshman Jimmy Hayes had excellent chances for Nobles – the former hit the crossbar and Ward came up with a big save on the latter.
All of the game’s scoring came in a wide-open second period. Nobles struck first when Maguire picked up a loose puck off a neutral zone turnover, broke into the Andover zone alone and shot one far side. Junior defenseman Mark Fayne picked up an assist on the goal, which came at the 2:02 mark.
After a dubious slashing call sent Nobles’ sophomore forward Josh Franklin to the penalty box, Andover converted on the power play as Maresco, a senior from Lynnfield, Mass., knocked home the rebound of a Kyle Kucharski shot at 5:07 to make it a 1-1 game. Junior defenseman Tommy Dignard also picked up an assist on the play.
Shortly after, with Kucharski in the box, Nobles poured it on during the power play, but couldn’t bury it. Ward came up big on Matt Rhone, and then robbed Franklin on a partial breakaway.
When play returned to full strength Andover went through a stretch during which they had difficulty getting the puck out of their end and through the neutral zone with any kind of speed, but Nobles, despite carrying the play, couldn’t bury their chances.
Instead, it would be Andover that would score the next goal and it would turn out to be the game winner as junior Chris Cahill took a shot that deflected off Muse, Nobles’ sophomore goaltender, and into the corner. Cahill went and got it, skated it back out front and roofed one from about 12 feet out to make it a 2-1 game with 1:47 left in the period.
The third period was scoreless, though both teams had some excellent chances. Muse made a great early save on J.P. Martignetti to keep the game at 2-1. Nobles had a couple of excellent chances to tie it up, the first coming when Maguire stole the puck in the neutral zone, broke in alone, and fired one five-hole that Ward was just able to squeeze between his pads. A couple of minutes later, Ward came up big on a Matt Rhone scoring attempt.
Muse, who, like Ward, had a strong game, had to come up with another big stop on Martignetti in the final minutes. With a minute left, Muse was pulled for the extra attacker but Nobles couldn’t solve Ward.
“Ward played a heck of a game,” Andover coach Dean Boylan said afterward. “At times we got sloppy, but he held the fort. Plus we got a few breaks.”
Nobles coach Brian Day said he was pleased with his team’s effort. “We worked, and got back to some basics that we had gotten away from, but we just couldn’t finish. We were tougher today in terms of taking hits and getting our noses in there, though. We’ll continue to work to get better.”
Notes: Nobles outshot Andover, 44-34 and has now scored only two goals in their last 70-80 shots… For Andover, Cahill had what was probably his strongest game since returning from the NTDP and resuming prep play after the Christmas break… There were five penalties in the game, two against Nobles and three against Andover.
Northwood Tournament On Tap
The 26th Annual Northwood School Tournament, with 26 teams this year, gets underway Friday morning and runs through Sunday.
Northwood Schedule, Jan. 21-23
Fri. Jan. 21
BB&N at Milton, 7:15
Bridgton at Kent’s Hill, 4:00
Nobles at Lawrence, 5:30
Salisbury at Deerfield, 4:00 (makeup of 1/8)
Thayer at Andover, 5:30
Winchendon at NMH, 6:00
Selected Div. II:
Bridgton at Kent’s Hill, 4:00
St. Mark's at Rivers, 4:15
Sat. Jan. 22
Albany Academy at Pomfret, 4:30
Andover at Nobles, 2:30
Belmont Hill at St. Paul’s, 4:00
Berkshire at Avon, 2:30
Choate at Deerfield, 6:00
Gunnery at Williston, 5:30
Kent at Salisbury, 2:30
NMH at Exeter, 4:00 (makeup of 1/8)
St. Mark’s at St. Sebastian’s, 3:00
South Kent at Cushing, 4:00
Taft at Canterbury, 3:00
Thayer at Milton, 2:00
Tilton at KUA, 2:00
Trinity-Pawling at Hotchkiss, 2:30
Westminster at Loomis, 7:00
Winchendon at Millbrook, 4:30
Selected Div. II:
Groton at Middlesex, 2:30
Rivers at Berwick, 1:30
Brunswick at Kents Hill, 3:00
Proctor at Holderness, 3:30
St. Mark's at St. Sebastian’s, 3:00
Portsmouth Abbey at Vermont, 5:30
Worcester at Kingswood-Oxford, 2:00
Sun. Jan. 23
Albany Academy at Gunnery, 1:00
Lawrenceville at Taft, 12:00
Bridgton at Winchendon, 1:00
Salisbury Battles Back Against Deerfield
Deerfield, Mass. – Salisbury, blitzed by three Deerfield goals in the first six-plus minutes of play, battled back today to take a 7-5 win over a hungry Deerfield team in a makeup of the snowed-out game of Jan. 8.
Jerry Pollastrone led the way for Salisbury with a four-point game (2g,2a), while linemate Mike Atkinson finished with three points (2g,1a). Forward Ben Ketchum and defenseman Mike Walsh each had two assists.
For Deerfield, Josh Lesko hada pair of goals while linemate Mike Collins had a pair of assists.
The game was the first between the two teams since Salisbury edged Deerfield, 2-1, in the Flood-Marr final last month. This one had a much different feel, very wide open and physical, with the referees letting a lot go. The fans were wide awake from beginning to end.
In the early going, Deerfield was on fire, taking the play to the visitors, who were pinned in their own end. Up to about the nine minute mark, Salisbury only had one shot on goal while Deerfield built an early 3-0 lead.
The Big Green struck first when Lesko beat Salisbury goalie Jeff Mack with a snap shot just 1:08 in, Matt Lentini and Collins assisting.
Deerfield went up by two when a Matt Lovejoy shot from the point slipped between Mack’s pads at the 5:45 mark.
Just 19 seconds later, Deerfield went up by three when Collins took a shot from the left faceoff circle and it came out to Lesko, who banged it home.
After that goal, Salisbury woke up, and carried the play, both in terms of shots on goal and territorially, for the rest of the game.
Salisbury got on the board when a Walsh shot from the point was tipped home by Danny Galella at 12:16. It was Galella’s first goal of the season.
Salisbury outshot Deerfield 11-9 in the period, but trailed at the break 3-1.
Deerfield came out for the second and scored a goal right off the bat to go up 4-1 as Milton Lyles faked a shot, drew the goalie over, and dished it to linemate Jeremiah Bayer who flicked it high into the net.
Salisbury would then begin to pour it on. First, defenseman Alex Biega took a pass at the blue line, held it, took a step or two down the high slot and snapped it past Deerfield goalie Rick Redmond at the 6:30 mark. Atkinson and Pollastrone picked up assists on the play.
A little over a minute later, Atkinson, off a pass from Ketchum, fired a wrister from the left faceoff circle that beat Redmond, cutting Deerfield’s lead to 4-3.
But Deerfield struck next as J.J. Evans took a headman pass from a Deerfield d-man, and neatly deked Mack at the 11:42 mark to put Deerfield back up by two.
Salisbury would cut the Big Green lead back to one again when, with the teams skating 4-on-4, Deerfield turned over the puck down low and Atkinson picked up the loose puck and fired it past Redmond at 15:36.
The second period ended with Deerfield clinging to a 5-4 lead. Salisbury outshot Deerfield 20-6 for the period.
In the third, Salisbury tied it up at 5-5 when Ketchum passed it to Walsh who moved it up to Pollastrone who flew down the left wing into the Deerfield end and fired a perfect bullet from the faceoff circle that beat Redmond high to the near side at the 11:09 mark.
The winning goal came with 5:13 left in regulation when Jeremiah Cunningham carried the puck down the left side, made the pass across to Will Ortiz who fired it past Redmond. Andrew Estey also picked up an assist on the play.
Deerfield pulled Redmond with 1:09 left and managed to keep the puck in the Salisbury end for 49 seconds, though the disc was bouncing all over the place like a superball. Eventually, the suspense came to a crashing end when Salisbury defenseman Brian Hartigan then got the puck up to Pollastrone, who buried the empty netter with 20.6 seconds left.
“It was a great game,” relieved Salisbury coach Dan Donato said afterward. “Deerfield came out flying, and we just weren’t ready to go. We came out and tried to feel them out.”
“In the second period, we outshot them, 20-6. I told them, ‘Just keep playing the way you are and we can win.”
“Deerfield is a good team. They made us work hard. I think we’ll look back in March and say that a lot of good came out of this game. This was a big game for us to win.”
For Deerfield, it was a tough loss, but they did give Salisbury a run for their money, despite being outshot by a 38-18 margin. Salisbury, in the end, just has too much firepower up front.
Andover at St. Sebastian’s, 4:15
Canterbury at Westminster, 2:30
Cushing vs. Thayer (@ Babson), 3:30
Exeter at Choate, 2:00
Gunnery at Millbrook, 4:00
Hotchkiss at Kent, 2:30
Kimball Union at Deerfield, 4:15
Lawrence at BB&N, 5:00
Loomis at Taft, 2:30
NMH at Avon, 4:00
South Kent at Williston, 4:30
St. Paul’s at Nobles, 3:00
Tabor at Milton, 3:30
Trinity-Pawling at Salisbury, 2:30
Winchendon at Pomfret, 3:00
Selected Div. II:
Portsmouth Abbey at Rivers, 3:00
Brewster at Berwick, 3:30
Hebron at Pingree, 4:30
Kents Hill at Proctor, 4:30
Cushing and Thayer Battle to a 4-4 Tie
Wellesley, Mass. --In a rugged, hard-fought game at Babson College this afternoon, #4 Thayer and #7 Cushing went at it for 59 minutes and emerged with a 4-4 tie.
All four of Thayer’s goals were scored by the Greg Collins (3g)-Brian Gibbons (4a)-Pierce Norton (1g,2a) line, while Cushing spread their four goals between three lines.
After a first period in which the two teams were mostly feeling each other out, things heated up right off the bat in the second, when five goals were scored in a little over ten minutes.
Cushing scored just 30 seconds in when PG Steve McClellan, from the right faceoff, circle made a perfect pass to Tom Bardis, who was streaking down the slot. Bardis fired it by Thayer goaltender Mat Frechette to give the Penguins a 1-0 lead.
Cushing quickly added another, going up 2-0 when a Damen Nisula shot appeared to deflect off the skate of a Thayer defenseman and past Frechette at the 2:08 mark.
Cushing’s lead was cut to 2-1 when Thayer capitalized on a Keith Yandle turnover in the Cushing end. Gibbons, quick and elusive as always, got the puck to Collins who buried it at the 3:02 mark.
Thayer then scored two fairly similar goals to tie up the game and then take the lead. Both of the goals came on the power play and both came after Cushing’s Aaron Bogosian failed to cash in on scoring opportunities at one end and the play turned back up ice.
In the first case, Norton, with one second left on a Sam D’Agostino penalty for slashing, took a pass from Gibbons and beat Cushing goalie Richard Bachman with a hard, low shot at the 8:53 mark.
Less than two minutes later, at 10:43, Norton hit Collins with a pass and Collins, in front, cashed in at the 10:43 mark to turn a 2-0 Cushing lead into a 3-2 Thayer lead – and that’s how the period ended.
In the third, with Cushing on a power play, sophomore Brad Malone, who played a strong game, made a nice pass out from behind the goal line, onto the stick of D’Agostino, who converted at the 5:06 mark to make it a 3-3 game.
Neither team was playing for the tie, though.
At the 9:15 mark, Thayer went ahead when Collins scored a nifty goal off a faceoff, just pushing the puck ahead, stepping up and firing it off the far post and in.
As the clock counted down, and there was under five minutes left,Cushing was applying pressure, searching for the equalizer. They got it when Malone banged home the puck from a scrum in front.
In overtime, Norton had several shots in one shift, but couldn’t get the game winner for Thayer. With 30 seconds remaining Yandle went end-to-end for Cushing and got off a shot which Frechette was able to handle.
The game ended in a 4-4 tie, marking the third straight Wednesday that Cushing has played a tie game.
Afterward, Thayer head coach Larry Rooney said, “We responded well to a down game on Saturday (a loss to Lawrence Academy) and that’s what we were looking for. Even though we tied it was a moral victory. We have to continue to climb and move forward. It was a great game. A lot of up-and-down action. The game could have gone either way.”
Cushing head coach Steve Jacobs said, “We kept letting them back in. We had them 2-0, and then we took some bad penalties. In the third period we played great, but then we gave up that faceoff goal. I’m happy with the way we battled, but I’m disappointed in some of the penalties we took.”
Notes: Thayer played the game without defenseman Anthony Aiello, who received a DQ for a penalty taken in Thayer’s Saturday loss… Cushing outshot Thayer 28-22, with the first two periods pretty even, and the third going to Cushing.
The makeup of the Jan. 8 snowed-out game between Salisbury and Deerfield will take place this Friday afternoon, Jan. 21, at 4:00 pm at Deerfield Academy.
Deerfield Wins Ugly
Pawling, New York - Deerfield took too many unnecessary penalties, had too much difficulty clearing their own zone, and let Trinity-Pawling hang around too long, but held on for a 3-1 win Saturday in a game that can only be described as ugly.
Leading 1-0 going into the third period, thanks to a Tommy Schmicker goal with less than three minutes remaining in the previous stanza, Deerfield came out with hopes pf putting away a physical and feisty Trinity-Pawling team that was riddled with injuries and illnesses (T-P dressed four JV players for the game). Trinity-Pawling, of course, had other ideas.
The beneficiary of a rather questionable call, Trinity-Pawling went on the power play at the 12:51 mark of the third period, and finally took advantage of the extra skater. Having pinned Deerfield in their own end for the entire first minute of the power play, T-P senior Brendan Smith dug the puck out of the corner to the right of Deerfield goalie Rick Redmond, and fed a pass to Josh Stone, who was inching in from the left point. Stone unleashed a slapshot that somehow found its way through a crowd in front of a screened Redmond, and the score was tied at 1-1.
Playing their second game in less than 24 hours, Deerfield seemed to wake up after the T-P goal , as less than three minutes later, Deerfield's Mike Collins beat Trinity Pawling goalie Travis Myers on a pretty puck movement rush. Josh Lesko and Matt Lentini assisted on this goal – and it would prove to be the game-winner.
Deerfield scored again, just fifty seconds later, as Matt Lovejoy scored on a slapshot from the left point after receiving a nice set up pass from right defenseman Jeff Landers.
The game, which had moments of ugliness building since the opening of the second period, got really nasty when, long after a whistle stopped play in front of the Trinity-Pawling net, T-P's Ryan Hennessy speared a Deerfield player in the neck. Hennessy was given a 5-minute major and tossed from the game. Deerfield was unable to convert during the long man advantage, and with 2:51 left in the game and 1:04 remaining in the major penalty, Deerfield was called for roughing, setting up a 4-on-4 for most of the remainder. Trinity Pawling pulled Myers with over a minute left to play, giving them the extra skater, but was unable to score.
The game ended with no further mishaps.
Dignard OT Strike Lifts Andover Over Exeter
Andover, Mass. -- A goal by Andover junior defenseman Tommy Dignard with 29 seconds left in overtime gave Andover a 5-4 come-from-behind win over archrival Exeter here this afternoon.
The winning goal came off a neutral zone turnover. With the clock winding down it looked as if Exeter, which had been clearly outplayed from the beginning of the third period, would be able to escape town with a tie. Exeter, however, was unable to dump the puck into the Andover end, which would have eaten precious seconds off the clock. Instead, Andover picked up the loose puck and took it into the Exeter end for one last crack. There, senior Kyle Kucharski picked up the puck behind the Andover net, drawing two defenders to him. With the front of the Exeter net unprotected, Dignard drifted down from the left point, whereupon Kucharski hit him with a heads-up pass. Dignard fired it, and his shot went off the post and in, setting off the Andover celebration.
Earlier in the game, Andover was looking up from a hole. After Exeter’s Chris Downer fired a high shot over Andover goalie Matt Ward with 7:33 left in the second period, Andover found themselves trailing 4-2.
But less than two minutes later, that lead had been wiped off the board as Andover struck twice in quick succession. First, Andover junior Chris Cahill snapped one off from the slot that broke off the right pad of Exeter goalie Chris Mannix and into the net to make it 4-3 at the 11:36 mark, and then 32 seconds later, on the powerplay, Andover’s Dignard fed Steve Rolecek who made a nice pass to Kevin Maresco, who fired it past Ward at the 12:08 mark. Suddenly, the game was tied 4-4, and that’s where things stood going into the second intermission.
Exeter began the third period killing a penalty. A few minutes after killing it off, Exeter took another penalty, for too many men on the ice. Four minutes after that they took their third straight penalty of the period, a slash called on Tommy Price. With their top players weary from constantly killing penalties, Exeter appeared on the ropes, but Andover, which would hold a huge territorial edge throughout the period, had a hard time getting many high-quality chances. Nonetheless, their strong forecheck forced Exeter to play a kind of rope-a-dope, taking hard hits from Andover forwards able to outskate them and had more size and skill.
But Andover just couldn’t score, in part because Exeter worked hard, battling for everything.The pattern continued in OT – until Dignard moved down from the point and put the game away. It was the first goal in a span of 28:03.
Earlier in the game, Exeter’s Price scored on the first shot of the game, then Andover followed with a pair, as Kucharski and Ryan Burke scored to give Andover a 2-1 lead. Exeter’s David Ramsay tied it up at 2-2 with 1:06 left in the period.
In the second period, Exeter’s Kevin Crane tied it up with an against-the grain, wide-angle shot that sailed over Ward’s left shoulder for a powerplay goal at the 6:57 mark. 10:27 into the period, right after Kucharski had a good scoring opportunity thwarted at one end, the play turned back up ice. In the neutral zone, Exeter’s Chris Downer picked up a loose puck and was off to the races, puttingshot high over Ward to take the 4-2 lead, the lead that just would not hold up.
Afterward, Exeter coach Dana Barbin said, “Any time you lose to your archrival it’s a heartbreaker, especially when you have a two-goal lead.”
Andover head coach Dean Boylan said, “The game was a really good one and it could have gone either way.” “But,” he added, “today things just went our way.”
MacPherson Tournament Underway Today
The MacPherson tournament, held at St. Andrew's College in Aurora, Ont., gets underway today.
Participating teams are Upper Canada College (Toronto, Ont.), Gilmour Academy (Gates Mills, Ohio), Kings Edgehill School (Windsor, Nova Scotia), Northwood (Lake Placid, NY), Notre Dame HS (Burlington, Ontario), Shady Side Academy (Pittsburgh, PA), St. Francis HS (Athol Springs, NY), and St. Andrew's College (Aurora, Ontario).
Here’s the tournament web site. Please check here for the latest results.
Choate at NMH, 6:30
Cushing at Deerfield, 7:00
Nobles at BB&N, 5:45
Tabor at Holderness, 7:00
Tilton at Proctor, 6:00
Winchendon at Williston, 5:00
Hoosac at Pingree
Worcester at Portsmouth Abbey, 5:30
Tilton at Proctor, 6:00
Avon at Kent, 2:30
BB&N at St. Mark’s, 3:30
Berkshire at Williston, 2:30
Canterbury at Albany Academy, 4:30
Deerfield at Trinity-Pawling, 2:30
Exeter at Andover, 4:30
GDA at Belmont Hill, 2:00
Gunnery at Winchendon, 4:00
Holderness at NMH, 3:30
Loomis at Hotchkiss, 2:30
Milton at Middlesex, 3:30
Pomfret at Millbrook, 7:00
Salisbury at Westminster, 2:30
South Kent vs. Worcester Academy (at Yale), 5:15
St. Paul’s at St. Sebastian’s, 3:15
Tabor at KUA, 1:30
Taft at Choate, 7:00
Thayer at Lawrence, 1:00
Tilton at Cushing, 3:30
Worcester vs South Kent (@Yale), 5:15
BBN at St. Mark's, 3:30
Kents Hill at Bridgton, 3:30
Pingree at Proctor, 4:30
Brewster at Hebron, 1:00
Groton at St. George's, 2:30
Note: We’re looking for makeup dates from the snowed-out games of this past Saturday (Jan. 8). Please e-mail new dates to email@example.com.
The weather is lousy again today, with New England forecasts showing, in various combinations, snow, rain, and ice pellets. So far we only know of one game that’s been scratched – Proctor at Berwick. As of now, a makeup date has yet to be set.
Note: The Berkshire School has new dates for their two snowed-out games. The Dec. 6 Canterbury game will be played at Berkshire on Thurs. Feb. 3 at 3:45 pm, and the Jan. 6 Williston at Berkshire game is now scheduled for Mon. Jan 24 at 4:45 pm.
Nothing Decided Here
#7 Cushing Academy and #9 Tabor Academy skated to a 1-1 tie today, with the Penguins’ Brad Malone and the Seawolves’ Drew Wadsworth scoring the game’s only goals 19 seconds apart early in the third period.
Overall, the game was pretty even, with both teams taking turns at holding the puck in the other team’s end, and a lot of 5-on-5 skating. Tabor, which had the game’s top line in the Chris Potts-Steve Silva-Matt Cook combination, had more quality scoring opportunities but were denied by Cushing junior goaltender Richard Bachman, who had 36 saves. Steven Ritter was strong for Tabor, kicking out 39 shots. (We find those shot numbers a little high on both sides, but no matter: both goalies came up big when called upon.)
After a scoreless first period, Cook had a great opportunity to put Tabor on the board when he had the near side lined up but couldn’t bury it. Later in the period, Tabor junior forward Jamie Jelinek had a great shorthanded opportunity, stripping Cushing defenseman Keith Yandle at the blue line and taking off the length of the ice only to be stopped by a great Bachman glove save that kept the game 0-0. About a minute later, Bachman came up with another excellent glove save, this time off Potts.
The game entered the third period still 0-0, but not for long as Cushing, on the power play, scored when Malone, a 6’2” sophomore from Miramichi, NB – the land of Atlantic salmon – banged away at a rebound until it popped in just 54 seconds into the period.
Nineteen seconds later, Tabor tied it up at 1-1 on a nice all-around play. Cook got the play started by moving the puck smartly to Silva who dished it to defenseman Wadsworth, the trailer on the play. The goal, which was even-strength, came at the 1:19 mark and finished off the day’s scoring.
But the best part of the game was yet to come, as the game picked up speed and intensity over the last 5-7 minutes of the third period.With it came a number of good opportunities. Perhaps the best came when Tabor’s Chris Bower, stationed behind the net, got the puck out front to Keith Bombaugh for a great scoring opportunity with about four minutes left. Bombaugh, however, couldn’t put it by Bachman.
In overtime, Tabor had good pressure, particularly late, but neither team could find the back of the net.
As time ran out, Cushing’s Yandle took a gratuitous chop to the back of Potts’ legs, the only down point to what had been a good clean game. Yandle was assessed a major and, in the minor skirmish that followed, Tabor’s Andy Brennan retaliated with a cross check, picking up a minor.
Players on both sides today missed the game due to injury or sickness. Tabor forward Keif Orsini was out with a separated shoulder, so defenseman Ben Smith moved up to center. For Cushing Jayson Lee, Damen Nisula, and Scott Soborowski were out with injuries; and Ben Ewing and John Frey were sick.
For Cushing, it was their second 1-1 tie in a week. Last Wednesday, the Penguins and Governor Dummer battled to a 1-1 tie.
“We were a little off,” Cushing coach Steve Jacobs said afterward. “We battled hard, but it was sloppy – too many turnovers. We forechecked well, had the edge in territory, and Bachman played well for us. But Tabor’s a good team.”
“Both teams played hard and moved the puck well” Tabor coach Gerry Dineen said. “It was an exciting game.”
Avon at Hotchkiss, 2:15
BB&N at GDA, 5:15
Berkshire at Albany Academy, 3:00
Choate at Canterbury, 4:00
Cushing at Tabor, 3:30
Exeter at KUA, 4:30
Gunnery at South Kent, 2:30
Holderness at Winchendon, 3:30
Kent at Trinity-Pawling, 2:30
Lawrence at Nobles, 4:30
Loomis at Deerfield, 2:30
St. Paul’s at Milton, 3:45
Thayer at Belmont Hill, 3:30
Tilton at Andover, 2:30
Westminster at Taft, 2:30
Williston at Pomfret, 4:30
Key Div. II Games:
Brooks at St. George's, 4:30
Proctor at Berwick, 3:30
Roxbury Latin at St. Mark's, 5:00
Vermont Academy at Groton, 3:30
Kents Hill at Brewster, 3:30
Hebron at Middlesex, 4:45
Note: We’re looking for makeup dates from the snowed-out games of this past Saturday (Jan. 8). Please e-mail new dates to firstname.lastname@example.org.
So far, we have one makeup date: NMH at Exeter has been rescheduled to Sat. Jan. 22 at 4:00 pm.
Rhinos Slay Another Dragon
Salisbury, Conn. -- #8-ranked Taft School continued its roll over higher-ranked teams Monday, handing #2 Salisbury a 5-4 defeat in a hard-fought match here. Shane Farrell led the Taft offense with a hat trick.
The Taft victory was not a one-sided one, however, as Salisbury outshot Taft 36 -24 in the game.But the Taft defense, led by junior goalie Alex Kremer, proved to be the difference in the game -- just as it was Saturday when Taft upset #1 Avon Old Farms by a 1-0 score.In that game, the Taft goalie was sophomore Andrew Margolin.
Taft took a 1-0 lead at 15:40 of the first period when Farrell scored on a shot from just above the left face-off circle that somehow eluded Salisbury goalie Jeff Mack. It was the only score in the period.Taft outshot Salisbury 9-8.
But the Salisbury offense kicked into high gear when they opened the second period with 1:50 remaining on a power play.During that span, Salisbury pumped off five shots on the Taft goal but Kremer stood up to the test.At 4:52, however, Salisbury senior Tyler Quinn took a shot from approximately the same spot that Taft scored on in the first period, and this time Taft goalie Kremer let in a goal that he probably should have stopped.
For the rest of the second period, the two teams traded power play goals.
With just over seven minutes left in the second period Salisbury took a penalty, and Taft capitalized quickly on the power play when Charlie Townsend pumped in a shot from just outside the left face-off circle at the 12:36 mark.Almost immediately after that goal, however, Taft took a penalty, and, at 13:37, Salisbury responded with a Will Ortiz power play goal on a tough-angle shot from the left of the goal. Less than a minute later, Salisbury got caught with too many men on the ice, giving Taft yet another power play. With 1:31 remaining in the period, Max Pacioretty fed Sean Carty with a perfect pass at the left post, and Carty put the puck home.At the end of the period Taft had a 3-2 lead, even though Salisbury had outshot Taft in the period 16-11.
The power play seesaw continued as the third period opened.This time it was Salisbury's turn when Taft's Jake Davis was sent off the ice with a penalty. Ortiz picked up his second goal of the game when he poked in a rebound of a shot by Mike Biega (whose brother, Alex,sat out the game with an ankle injury) at 4:33.That tied the game at 3-3.The game intensified from that point on, but Taft broke the ice at 8:59 of the period off a 2-on-1 rush.Farrell took the shot from just outside the right face-off circle, and scored when the puck caromed off the left post into the net. Just over two minutes later, at 11:06, Jeff Beck fed a perfect pass through the Salisbury defensemen to Farrell, sending him in on a breakaway.Farrell scored on a shot into the upper left corner, giving the visitors a 5-3 lead.
Salisbury pulled its goalie in the final minutes, and it paid off when Jeremiah Cunningham stuffed home a rebound in front of the net with 8.3 seconds left on the clock.
But time ran out for Salisbury, and Taft had its second major upset of the week.
Thayer Roars Back with Five Straight Third Period Goals
Canton, Mass. -- Trailing 3-1 with just under 13 minutes left in the third period, #6 Thayer exploded for five straight goals on the way to a 6-3 win over #4 Nobles Saturday.
Down the stretch, Thayer's top line of RW Pierce Norton (4g,1a), LW Greg Collins (1g,4a) and C Brian Gibbons (1g) was simply unstoppable. Norton in particular played like a man among boys in the offensive zone, using his size, strength and mean streak to dominate along the wall and around the net.
Nobles started strong, opening the scoring at 2:41 of the first on a breakaway goal by Ryan Maguire, who tucked a backhander behind Thayer's Matt Frechette after taking a nice home-run pass from D Derek Pallis.
Thayer replied at 3:57 on a power play when Norton muscled out from the backboards and tucked a backhander up under the bar. Collins and Ryan Driscoll assisted.
Thayer had the edge in play in the first, forechecking aggressively and pinching its D at every opportunity.
Much of the second period was played in the neutral zone before Nobles took the lead on a late goal by its '89 line of Josh Franklin, Jimmy Hayes and Andrew Glass. Franklin corraled a loose puck in the left corner and fed Hayes, who snapped a 20-footer over John Muse's glove from between the faceoff dots at 15:03.
Nobles went up by two 5:16 into the third. With the teams playing 4-on-4, Matt Rhone cleanly won a draw back to Josh Burrows, then tipped Burrows' shot past Muse.
At that point, Nobles looked to be in good shape. Inexplicably, though, they fell apart and the strength and speed of Norton, Collins and Gibbons took over.
The comeback started on a Norton top-shelf wrister from close range at 8:15. Collins assisted.
Norton tied it on a power play at 10:34, tipping in a shot from the top of the crease. Anthony Aiello and Collins assisted.
At 12:27, Gibbons scored the day's prettiestgoal. Sent in alone by Norton, Gibbons faked Muse out into the Sportsplex parking lot before sliding home the winner.
Norton notched his fourth from Collins at 14:26 and Collins bagged an empty netter with 21 seconds left.
Nobles will try to bounce back when it hosts Lawrence on Wednesday, while Thayer heads over to Belmont Hill.
Taft Edges #1 Avon in a Nail-Biter
Watertown, Conn. -- After Avon beat Taft in early December, long-time Avon coach John Gardner said he didn't look forward to facing Taft later in the season.
Well, Part II came today -- this time in Taft's spiffy building, before a crowd that had braved the sleet and horrible driving conditions – and the Rhinos, behind a 26-save shutout by sophomore Andrew Margolin and a 5-on-3 powerplay goal off the stick of Jeff Beck at 9:22 of the third period, emerged with a 1-0 win
With the win, new Taft head coach Dan Murphy, formerly an assistant at Avon under Gardner, picked up his first win over his mentor.
Fans who braved the sleet and horrible driving conditions were treated to one of the best matchups of the season. Both teams were flying from beginning to end, the hitting was hard, and fans saw opportunity after opportunity result from fierce forechecking and mid-ice turnovers. A total of 17 penalties were called in the game, and both Taft and Avon managed to create several excellent scoring opportunities while on the penalty kill, but both goalies – Margolin and Avon’s Jon Quick – were on top of their game.
The game’s only goal, midway through the third period, came after Avon was called for a tripping minor, and then, just 11 seconds after that, Avon's Augie DiMarzo picked up his third penalty of the game, a slashing minor, giving Taft the two-man advantage. The Rhinos wasted no time in applying pressure, pinning the puck low in Avon's end, and less than a minute later, Taft's Shane Farrell, faking a slap shot from the point, snapped a hard pass to Doug Jones who was positioned about six feet to the left of the Avon goaltender. Jones never hesitated, one-timing a pass across the goalmouth to a wide-open Beck, who one-timed his shot into the net, just under a sprawling Quick, with 8:38 remaining in regulation.
The game started out with each team picking up an excellent scoring opportunity in the first period.
On the first, about halfway through the stanza, and with Avon on the power play, Quick came up with a beautiful pad save on a short-handed attempt by Taft's Shane Farrell, who entered the Avon zone on a semi-breakaway.
Taft's two best scoring chances of the first period came while playing a man down – and putting constant pressure on Avon's point men.
Avon's best chance in the first came after a blue line scramble in Taft's end, with a clearing attempt hitting the skate of an Avon defenseman. The puck went directly to Winged Beavers’ forward Sean Backman, who turned and snapped a shot on goal. Taft’s Margolin kicked out his left skate, and came up with the big save.
In the second period, just like the first, Avon took an early penalty. On the ensuing powerplay, Taft moved the puck well, but the aggressive yet patient Avon penalty kill allowed only a couple of perimeter shots to get through. In the middle portion of the second period, the game’s intensity picked up a notch, with the teams perhaps sensing that the game would probably be decided by the first goal. At the same time, both teams sent a steady flow of players to the penalty box-- ten minors were called in the period -- and much of the second stanza was played with man-advantage situations or 4-on-4 play.
Taft failed to convert on its first two-man advantage halfway through the second period, although they pressured the Avon defense well. As soon as the powerplay expired, Avon began their own assault, resulting in their best scoring chance of the period. The Winged Beavers’ Joe Sides, moving in on Margolin's right, took two strides across the blue line and unleashed a slap shot targeted toward the upper right corner of the net. Margolin was barely able to get part of his glove on the puck, but he caught just enough. The puck continued over Margolin's shoulder and rolled past the post by inches.
With the score still 0-0, the third period began with wide-open skating and two teams that appeared willing to hit anything that moved. Five minutes into the final period, Taft was called for a roughing penalty, and Avon tried to capitalize. With excellent puck control, moving the puck in clock-wise, then counter-clock-wise, Avon kept steady pressure on Taft, moving the puck lower and lower, patiently waiting for the right shot. But the Taft defensemen worked hard to minimize Avon’s opportunities, blocking shot after shot with their skates or bodies. The ones that did get through were handled by Margolin.
As the Avon power play expired, Taft immediately went on the offensive, and Quick had to make a spectacular save on Taft forward Jake Davis, who had muscled his way through two Avon players. Davis let go a shot that Quick, somehow, grabbed out of the air.
The game-winning goal by Beck, who formerly played at the Hill School, came at the 8:38 mark, a nice tic-tac-toe goal with the Rhinos on a 5-on-3 powerplay.
Taft was called for too many men on the ice with just over five minutes remaining, and although Avon applied steady pressure, they were not able to convert on the power play. Avon's Sean Backman had, perhaps, Avon's best scoring chance of the game, snapping a close-in and hard shot off the rush. Margolin made a save that can only be described as pure burglary.
With 1:05 left in the game, Avon pulled their goalie in a last ditch effort to tie. But again, the Taft defenders gave Avon little to shoot at, blocking most shots before they hit the net.
That’s it, then: Avon and Taft split their season series. There’s a chance they’ll meet again, though – in the playoffs.
Weather Causing Cancellations
With a winter storm moving across New England today, we have a number of cancellations, as the Williston-Berkshire, Winchendon-Gunnery, Salisbury-Deerfield, Exeter-NMH, Choate-Andover, GDA-Pomfret, and Proctor-Brunswick game are all scratches.
Please call the schools and check the weather forecasts before heading out and, if there are any cancellations/postponements, please send them as soon as possible to information (at) ushr.com. Thank you.
Avon at Taft, 2:30
St. Paul’s at Middlebury JV
Belmont Hill at St. Sebastian’s, 3:00
Bridgton at Tabor, 2:00
Andover at Choate, 6:00 -- cancelled, no makeup date
KUA at Cushing, 3:30
Salisbury at Deerfield, 3:00 -- cancelled, may be made up Sunday
GDA at Pomfret, 7:00 -- cancelled, no makeup date
Holderness at Tilton, 3:00
Hotchkiss at Millbrook, 7:00
Kent at Loomis, 3:00
Milton at Lawrence, 1:30
Nobles at Thayer, 2:10
NMH at Exeter, 3:00 -- cancelled, no makeup date
Trinity-Pawling at Westminster, 3:00
Williston at Berkshire, 2:30 -- cancelled, no makeup date
Winchendon at Gunnery, 2:00 -- cancelled, no makeup date
Andover Too Much for Holderness
Andover, Mass. – Sophomore Joey Smith notched four points (2g,2a) to lead Andover past Holderness here today. Juniors J.P Martignetti (2g,1a), Paul Engelhardt (1g,1a), Hunter Thunnell (2a), and senior Steve Rolecek (2a) all had multiple points for Andover.
The Holderness power play wasn’t clicking today, as they went a minus three, giving up a pair of shorthanded goals in the first, and then another early in the second
Senior forward Noah Andersen-David (2g) and freshman Paul Kirtland (2a) led the Holderness offense.
Andover outshot Holderness, 44-24.
Wednesday’s Div. I Prep Games
Avon at Pomfret, 3:00
Thayer at BB&N, 3:15
Milton at Belmont Hill, 4:00
Canterbury at Williston, 3:30
Cushing at GDA, 5:00
Holderness at Andover, 3:30
Kent at South Kent, 2:30
Lawrence at St. George’s, 4:00
Nobles at St. Sebastian’s, 4:15
NMH at Tilton, 4:30
Tabor at Exeter, 3:30
Falcons Top UCC, Win Tabor Tournament
Marion, Mass. -- The New England Junior Falcons, behind a pair of Tim Kunes goals, won the 2005 edition of the Joshua H. Weeks Tabor Invitational here today, holding off an opportunistic Upper Canada College squad by the score of 4-2.
The game began as many had hoped for, with fast, wide-open skating and plenty of hitting, as both teams fought early to establish territorial advantage. The two referees and one linesman let the boys play -- only one minor penalty was called in the first period -- and the game quickly became an old-fashioned street fight.
UCC broke through first and early as the Falcons over-stepped the forecheck, and got caught too deep into UCC territory. UCC forward James Giroday and line mates Sam Yorke and David Chubb moved the puck quickly up ice where Giroday made a nifty move in front of Falcons’ netminder Doug Raeder and roofed a wrist shot over the goalie’s shoulder.
Just six minutes later, with the hitting becoming heavier and more frequent, the Junior Falcons answered back as defenseman Kunes was the recipient of two quick passes from forwards Matt Draheim and Nick Snow and beat UCC goalie Zach Saunders. Kunes buried his shot from the slot and the score was tied at 1-1.
With less than two minutes remaining in the opening period, UCC's top line of Gilles Hickey, Colin Greening, and feisty Michael Belliveau put steady and yet unseen pressure on the Falcon's defensemen. Hickey began the play by outworking two Falcons defenders, getting the puck out of the corner, and feeding Greening who was stationed behind the net. Greening then one-timed a tape-to-tape pass to Belliveau who, positioned perfectly in front of the net, beat Raeder to recapture the lead. The first period ended with UCC leading 2-1.
As will happen in championship games played with spirit and grit, tempers began to surface as the second period got underway and both teams continued some fierce hitting. Playing 4-on-4, the Falcons evened the score when Kunes scored his second goal of the game, wristing an in-close shot over a sprawling Saunders. Saunders, it should be noted, had been standing on his head, making save after save, and keeping the score tight.
The Falcons scored the eventual game winner less than two minutes later as Nick Johnson was left alone in front of the UCC net, and Johnson pounded away at the puck, finally beating Saunders on his third rebound attempt.
The second period was a hard-hitting and penalty-filled affair that showed clearly that these two teams didn't like each other. The fans, however, loved what they were watching. The second period ended with the Falcons leading 3-2.
Upper Canada began the third period with a two-man advantage for almost a full two minutes, but the Falcons’ penalty killers, changed frequently by the Falcons’ coaches, kept UCC's powerplay completely off balance.
The only tally of the third period came five minutes in as Upper Canada, as they had shown all tournament, had difficulty getting the puck neatly out of their own zone. After losing the puck three times in their breakout on the same shift, the Falcons stole it again a fourth time, this time converting as Barry Almeida put the Falcons up 4-2, the final margin of victory.
Despite four power plays to end the game, including one with a two-man advantage for almost a fill minute, UCC was unable to rebound.
In the end, it was a combination of a fierce Falcon forecheck and a weak UCC breakout that cost UCC the chance to repeat as tournament champions.
7th Place Game:
St. Sebastian’s 4, Hill 1
SS: Coskren (2), Murphy, Fine.
Penalties: SS 4 minors, Hill 3 minors.
SOG: St. Sebastian's 46, Hill 18.
Goaltenders: Toomey (SS); Curl (H).
5th Place Game:
Holderness 5, GDA 2
3rd Place Game:
Tabor 7, Milton 1
T: Cook (3); Potts (2), McGrath (2).
Penalties: Tabor 13, Milton 9
SOG: Tabor 34, Milton 26
Goaltenders: Ritter and Roy (T); Stearns (M)
N.E. Jr. Falcons 4, Upper Canada College 2
NE: Kunes (2); Almeida (2)
Penalties: NE 11 minors/1 misc, UCC 8 minors
SOG: NE 36, UCC 16
Goaltenders: Raeder (NE); Saunders (UCC)
Nobles Wins Cushing Tournament
Ashburnham, Mass. -- Noble and Greenough, behind a pair of goals from junior Ryan Maguire and a 31-save shutout by sophomore John Muse, edged host Cushing, 2-0,in the title game of the Edward G. Watkins Invitational Tournament here this afternoon
After a scoreless first period, Maguire put Nobles up 1-0 with 24 seconds left in the second period. Maguire, in his second year at Nobles after coming over from Arlington High, took a pass from linemate Matt Nelson and, from the left faceoff circle, snapped a shot into the far top corner, past the glove of Cushing junior goaltender Richard Bachman.
With 27 seconds left in the third period, Maguire would score an empty-netter to account for the 2-0 margin of victory.
Maguire’s goals were his fifth and sixth of the tournament. After the game he would be named the tournament MVP.
This was a good prep game -- fairly even territorially, and played hard and clean. Cushing, with the loss of Chris Bourque, Billy Ryan, Boomer Ewing, et al doesn’t have the firepower of recent years. Muse played an excellent game – he stopped everything that came his way – but he didn’t have to stand on his head. Second opportunities were kept to a minimum.
“We capitalized on our one chance,” Nobles coach Brian Day saidafterward, “and we had good goaltending.”
“This was a really good prep hockey game, and winning the tournament is a great accomplishment for our program.”
Day singled out the work of Muse and Maguire, whose two senior linemates, Drew DeLorey and Matt Nelson, a Yale recruit, also had strong games. “We always talk about executing the little things,” Day said. “There was a total commitment to that today.”
Berkshire won the third place game when senior Jonny Micka scored a rebound goal 43 seconds into overtime to top Canterbury 4-3.
Ths one had a wild finish, as Berkshire actually looked as if they had it won when they went ahead 3-2 when junior Spencer Noyes scored off a faceoff play with 43 seconds remaining in regulation.
However, with less than two seconds on the clock Canterbury junior RW Sebastian Kimmel scored to tie up the game and send it into OT.
Berkshire was without head coach Alex Moody throughout the tournament. On New Year’s Eve, Moody became the father to a 9 lb, 9 oz. Baby girl, Maris Lane Moody.
Ryan Maguire, Nobles
John Muse, G, Nobles
Drew DeLorey, F, Nobles
Matt Nelson, F, Nobles
Tom Bardis, F, Cushing
Keith Yandle, D, Cushing
Kyle Koziara, D, Cushing
Pat Cullity, D, Berkshire
Jason Zuck, G, Canterbury
Matt Germain, F, NMH
Sean Driscoll, F, Pomfret
Paul Jerusik, F, Lawrence
David deKastrozza, F, Culver
7th Place Game:
Lawrence 4, Culver 1
LA: Massar, Jerusik, Nolin, Schneider.
Penalties: LA 6 minors, Culver 4 minors
5th Place Game
NMH 3, Pomfret 2
NMH: Rosata (2), Germain.
P: Kemmerer, Welch.
Penalties: Pomfret 8, NMH 8
SOG: NMH 43, Pomfret 28
Goaltenders: Schoen (NMH); Wenning (P).
3rd Place Game:
Berkshire 4, Canterbury 3 (OT)
B: Ashley, Flanagan, Noyes, Micka.
C: Kupperman, Ciardullo, Kimmel.
Penalties: Canterbury 9, Berkshire 6
Goaltenders: Crowson (B); Zuck (C).
Nobles 2, Cushing 0
N&G: Maguire (2)
C: No Scoring
Penalties: Cushing 4, Nobles 3
SOG: Cushing 31, Nobles 30
Goatenders: Muse (N&G); Bachman (C).
Falcons, UCC to Meet in Tabor Title Game
-- Marion, Mass.
The New England Junior Falcons will meet Upper Canada College in the title game of the Tabor Tournament Sunday afternoon at 3 pm. tomorrow.
GDA 1, UCC 1 (GDA wins shootout)
SOG: GDA 38, UCC 25
Penalties: GDA 5, UCC 5
Goaltenders: Galajda (GDA); Saunders (UCC)
Hill 4, Tabor 2
H: Petrov, Donaher, Kennedy, Kratz.
T: Potts (2).
Penalties: Tabor 8, Hill 4
SOG: Tabor 36, Hill 23
Goaltenders: Ulsh (H); Ritter (T).
Milton 2, Holderness 1
M: Matczak, Hextall.
Penalties: Milton 3, Holderness 2.
SOG: Milton 31, Holderness 26
Goaltenders: Moutain (M); Murison (H).
N.E. Jr. Falcons 4, St. Sebastian’s 1
NE: Vatrano, Fernandez, Cannone, Tellier.
Penalties: N.E. Jr. Falcons 8, St. Sebastian's 8
SOG: NE 41, SS 17
Goaltenders: Dryjowickz-Burak (NE); Toomey (SS).
Tabor 2, UCC 2 (UCC wins shootout)
UCC: Greening, Reburn.
T: Orsini, Jelinek.
Penalties: UCC7, Tabor 6
SOG: Tabor 37, UCC 34
Goaltenders: Ritter (T); Saunders (UCC)
GDA 7, Hill 1
GDA: Day, Ferriero, Kapstad, Carpino, MacPhee, Morrissey, Genovese.
Penalties: GDA 4, Hill 3
SOG: GDA 29, Hill 14
9 am – 7th Place Game: Hill (1-2) vs. St. Sebastian’s (0-3)
11 am – 5th Place Game: GDA (1-1-1) vs. Holderness (1-2)
1 pm – 3rd Place Game: Tabor (1-1-1) vs. Milton Academy (2-1)
3 pm – Championship Game: UCC (1-0-2) vs. N.E. Jr. Falcons (3-0)
GDA fans aren't thrilled that their team is playing in the fifth place game when they had a better record than Tabor, which will be playing in the fifth place game. However, GDA's "better record" includes a shootout win, which isn't really a win. Such wins, according to the tournament rules, are to be "used for seeding purposes only."
The tie-breaking system gives two points for a win, and one point for a tie, hence UCC (1-0-2) finishes with four points and Tabor and GDA each finish with an identical 1-1-1 record (good for three points).
According to the rules, "If two teams finish with the same number of points, the seeding will be determined by the winner of the head-to-head game between the two teams. "
However, on Friday afternoon Tabor beat GDA 3-2 in a regulation win, hence Tabor finishes higher.
Cushing-Nobles to Face Off in Watkins Finale
Nobles and Canterbury finished regulation in a 3-3 tie earlier this evening. In the ensuing shootout, Nobles prevailed and will move on to Sunday’s 3 pm championship game against host Cushing.
Nobles 4, Culver 2
N&G: Nelson (2), Glass, Hayes.
C: Kreps, deKastrozza.
Penalties: Culver 4 (inc. major/game misc. to S. Geoffrion for a hit from behind); Nobles 3
Canterbury 3, Pomfret 2
C: Kupperman (2), K. Garceau.
P: Driscoll, Delaney.
Penalties: Pomfret 6 minors/1 misconduct; Canterbury 2 minors/1 major
Berkshire 3, Lawrence 2
B: Rabbani (2), Gunn.
L: Jerusik, Hutton.
Penalties: Berkshire 6, Lawrence 5
Cushing 4, NMH 2
CA: Yandle (2), Koziara, Bardis.
NMH: Powers, Crapser.
Penalties: NMH 10 minors/1 misc.; Cushing 9 minors.
Canterbury 3, Nobles 3 (Nobles wins shootout)
C: K. Garceau, Rowella, Silvestro.
N&G: DeLorey, Maguire, Glass.
Penalties: Canterbury 5, Nobles 5.
Pomfret 6, Culver 2
P: Driscoll (2), Marcus, Rich, Vraibel, Berard.
C: deKastrozza (2), Hennessey.
Penalties: Culver 6 minors/3 misc.; Pomfret 6 minors/1 misc.
Sunday’s Playoff Matchups:
9:00 am – 7th Place Game: Lawrence (0-3) vs. Culver (0-3)
11:00 am – 5th Place Game: NMH (1-2) vs. Pomfret (1-2)
1:00 pm – 3rd Place Game: Berkshire (2-1) vs. Canterbury (2-1)
3:00 pm – Championship Game: Cushing (3-0) vs. Nobles (3-0)