vs. Brunswick School
|Date:||January 4, 2019|
Salisbury Hangs On Against Pesky Brunswick
Showing little rust after a 19-day hiatus, Salisbury jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the first period and appeared to be on their way to an easy win over visiting Brunswick. The Bruins, however, had other ideas, extending the Knights to the final horn before resigning themselves to a 5-4 defeat. The win was the seventh straight for the surging Knights (9-2), who currently sit atop the New England Prep Rankings.
Salisbury went up, 1-0, on a power-play goal by Ilya Usau 3:22 into the game. Usau pounced on a rebound, ten feet out from the net, beating a Bruin defender to the puck and whacking it into the right side of the goal behind netminder Dan Dachille.
Nick Capone nearly made it 2-0 at 10:58, taking a cross-ice pass in full stride and sending a shot along the ice toward the open side of the net, but the puck clanged off the bottom of the post. Capone did not have to wait long for redemption, as he made good at 10:34 off a pass from Justin Hryckowian. Lucas Mercuri also assisted on the play.
With 7:16 left in the period, Bobby Metz shredded the Brunswick defense with an individual rush through the attacking end. Dachille was ready for him, though, and sealed off the left side of the goal to deny the shifty Metz. Dachille was at his best during a scramble inside the 5:20 mark, as a loose puck drew the attention of several Knight attackers, none of whom could penetrate Dachille’s resistance.
While the Bruins were on the power-play, the Knights upped their advantage to 3-0 when Matt Coronato raced into the Brunswick end along the right boards and found Jake Quillan with a brisk, cross-ice pass. Dachille could not shift position quickly enough to do anything other than admire Quillan’s bullet as it sped through the goal-mouth.
Still on the power-play, Brunswick finally solved Knight goalie Nick Haas with just 1:20 left before the first intermission to trim the Knights’ lead to 3-1. Salisbury went on the power-play at 16:58, but the period clock expired without any change in the score.
Early in period two, Matt DeBoer found Hryckowian with a sweet cross-ice pass, but Dachille moved quickly to close the open side of the net. As play continued, both teams had further power-play opportunities but could not convert. Haas had one of his biggest saves of the game at 14:28 while Brunswick was enjoying a two-man advantage. A Bruin attacker parked on the corner of the crease behind Haas took a pass and redirected it toward the open side of the net, but somehow Haas recovered quickly enough to keep the puck out. With 6:19 left, however, and just seconds after Haas had denied a breakaway, the Bruins scored a short-hander of their own to make it a one-goal game, 3-2.
Two minutes later, at 4:21, Michael Cameron restored the two-goal lead at 4-2 on a brilliant individual effort. Cameron moved the puck down the right side before arching his way through the Brunswick end toward the left circle. Suddenly, he unloosed a blur of a wrister that gave Dachille no chance as it located the top right corner of the net.
The teams moved on to the third period, and with 10:25 left Brunswick again narrowed the lead to a goal at 4-3. The Bruins continued to threaten, and it took Haas’s outstretched glove hand to stop a hard shot at 4:24 that would have otherwise tied the game. With just 2:57 showing, Salisbury mustered a semi-breakaway with Usau taking a Luke Krys pass in close and ramming the puck at Dachille. The Bruin netminder seemed to make the stop, but the puck squeezed through his pads and appeared behind him. The only question was whether or not it still had enough momentum to carry it across the goal line. It did, barely, but the linesman was in position to make the call, even as Dachille tried desperately to erase the evidence.
Usau’s second goal of the game would prove critical, as Brunswick would not fold. With Dachille sidelined in favor of an extra attacker, the Bruins scored to trim the score to 5-4. The clock still showed 50 seconds. Brunswick continued to keep the extra skater on the ice, but the Knights withstood the final assault to hold on for the win.