By Josh Schafer, HockomockSports.com Contributor
BROCKTON, Mass. – The puck dribbled free, deep in the Canton zone, as Oliver Ames goaltender Zach Walsh skated to his bench. Before the extra skater could enter the offensive zone, Canton forward Ryan Nolte corralled the puck and sent it the length of the ice into the empty Tiger goal.
Nolte’s simple flick put the finishing touches on the Bulldogs’ 2-0 victory over Oliver Ames at Asiaf Memorial Ice Rink on Wednesday night.
The Bulldogs dominated play in the first frame outshooting the Tigers 10-3. But Walsh kept the Canton offense in check for the first half hour of play, totaling 28 saves on the night.
“[Walsh] played well, he’s a good goalie,” Canton head coach Brian Shuman said. “He takes up a lot of the net and is very athletic…there’s some saves when you’re like ‘Wow how’d he make that?’ and that’s how he has always been against us.”
As the first period carried on, Canton’s offensive pressure intensified. Canton forward Mike Dadasis ripped a shot off of Walsh and the juicy rebound bounced unguarded in front of the net. Walsh denied Jack Goyetch’s rebound opportunity with another flash of his leg pad and Oliver Ames escaped the zone.
Oliver Ames struggled to land shots on goal tallying only 14 shots. A strong fore-check coupled with aggressive neutral zone play from Canton limited Oliver Ames’ offensive chances.
“We have to shoot the puck more,we talked about it a lot tonight,” Oliver Ames assistant coach Mike Zuccarelli said. “Getting into the shooting lane and shooting the puck. Then crash the net.”
Canton’s persistent attack finally broke through midway through the third period. Dadasis entered the zone with speed along the far side boards. He slid the puck to a streaking Bubba McNeice, who rocketed a back-hand shot to the short side top left corner of the cage.
“We needed a play to be made because we had some chances we just couldn’t seem to bury,” Shuman said.
Canton scored multiple goals in a game for only the second time this year while Oliver Ames failed to score in its second straight appearance. Canton goaltender Quinn Gibbs stopped 14 shots for his first shutout of the season.
Up next, Canton (3-2-1) hosts King Phillip at 4:00 p.m. on Saturday at the Canton Ice House. Oliver Ames (3-3) travels to Wellesley on Monday at 4:00 p.m. at Babson Skating Rink.
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