King Philip Stuns North With Last Second Goal

King Philip boys hockey
King Philip senior Sam Naggar (right) celebrates his game-winning goal with 5.8 seconds left. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)
ByRyanLanigan_2016FollowRyanLanigan_2016
 
 
 FOXBORO, Mass. – King Philip established control early in the game while North Attleboro asserted itself in the third period.

It looked like the Warriors and Rocketeers were destined to finish level, especially with the strong play of goalies Kyle Abbott and Nate Kelly.

The Warriors peppered Kelly for two periods but only lit the lamp once while North gained traction offensively in the third, including the tying goal early in the fame. But Abbott came up with two of his biggest stops with under a minute to go.

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With 21.9 seconds left in the game, KP senior James Boldy won a faceoff in the defensive zone back to classmate Sam Naggar, who whipped a clearance around the boards and out of the zone. North collected the puck in its own zone but heavy pressure from junior Rowan Boulger down low forced a turnover at the blue line.

With the clock ticking down, Naggar released a quick slap shot that deflected off a defenseman’s leg and through the five-hole with just 5.8 seconds left in the game to deliver King Philip a stunning 2-1 win over North Attleboro.

“Just put it on the net in that situation, good things will happen when it gets there,” said first-year King Philip head coach Toby Carlow. “The first half of the game we were better for sure. The third period, give credit to [North] because they came out and played very hard, they didn’t want to go home with a loss. In a game like this, one mistake ends up as the difference in the game.”

King Philip carried a 1-0 lead into the third period thanks to a second period goal from junior Tyler Douglas. The Warriors had a hefty advantage in offensive zone time and a large edge in shots on goal (29-10) entering the final period.

The chances for North started early in the final and snowballed from there. A weird bounce off the glass on a clearance from KP presented North senior Mark Ayvazyan with a good chance right in front but Abbott came up with the stop.

“I think the kids deserved a better fate,” said North Attleboro head coach Kyle Heagney. “Nate Kelly played very well for us. We had a very sluggish start but we got better as the game went on, got better each shift. The third period, I thought we controlled the majority of the puck but just a simple breakdown at the end destroyed our destiny.

“There’s always a lesson in a win and a loss, but there always seems like a bigger lesson in the loss. When you lose with five seconds in the game, as a coach, you’re always wondering what if, what if, what if. It comes down to inches and milliseconds…there were a lot of what ifs.”

The Rocketeers’ pressure was rewarded with a power play opportunity and despite having limited offensive zone time through the first 30-plus minutes, North wasted very little time cashing in.

Brody Gaulin took the faceoff, Joe Quinn skated in and dished the puck back to Ayvazyan at the blue line and his low shot/pass found Kaden Burns skating in front of the net all alone and he tucked away a low backhand shot into the back of the net just five seconds into the man-advantage situation to pull the Rocketeers level at 1-1 with 10:09 to go in the game.

North kept it going and had another power play chance just two minutes later but Abbott and the KP defense was up to the task. Boldy and Naggar had early clearances, and the line of Nate Garstka, Douglas, Cam Lehan-Allen, and Sonny Bianculli denied North any chances.

The best chance of the power play came when North defenseman Gavin Arabian ripped a deflected shot that took a bounce right in front of goal but Abbott gloved it comfortably and held on.

KP’s second penalty kill unit of Max Robison, Evan Trujillo, Naggar, and Ethan Sullivan killed the rest of the power play.

North had two good chances in the final two minutes. First, Dominic Bertino came flying down the right side but his wrist shot was snagged by Abbott. And right before the final face-off that sent KP to the win, Ayvazian had a good bid from a similar spot but Abbott had another stop.

“Kyle made two huge saves and he was ready for them,” Carlow said. “It’s tough sometimes when for the first half of the game, you’re not seeing a lot so you have to stay ready for when it does come and he was. Their goalie played outstanding too.

The Warriors came out on the front foot and registered 20 shots on Kelly in just the opening 15 minutes. Jack Gresham had two early chances, Evan Regan had a good shot after a feed from Trevor Pelkey, and Tim Mullen had a shot through traffic but all of KP’s chances in the first were turned aside by Kelly.

“Nate showed up and did his job,” Heagney said. “The defense and the forwards, we didn’t do our job for Nate tonight. I thought he played very well and he’s the reason we were in the game so late.”

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KP’s breakthrough came just over a minute into the second period. Douglas won a faceoff in the offensive zone, Robison battled in front with a defenseman and Douglas came skating back through and finished a low shot from in close to make it 1-0 at 13:56 of the second.

“Give credit to KP, I thought they outplayed us, I thought they beat us to pucks, and I thought they were tougher on pucks,” Heagney said. “It just seemed like it was their night, I don’t think we put enough pressure on them or tested their goalie. In order to win a game, you need effort, energy, and execution and we were lacking in execution tonight.”

King Philip boys hockey (3-0 Hockomock, 7-1 overall) travels to Canton on Saturday for a big showdown with the Bulldogs at 6:20. North Attleboro (1-2, 4-3) has a non-league tilt at home against Dartmouth.

Wagner, Franklin Blank Canton In Hock Showdown

Franklin boys hockey Dylan McEvoy
Franklin junior Dylan McEvoy takes a shot in the second period against Canton. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)
ByRyanLanigan_2016FollowRyanLanigan_2016
 
 
 
FRANKLIN, Mass. – On paper, it’s just one of eight league games on the schedule, but there’s no hiding the significance of when Canton and Franklin meet on the ice.

The Bulldogs have won the Davenport every single year since the league split into two divisions and the Panthers have had a hand in all but one — a combined 23 division titles over the past 12 seasons.

Both squads are the favorites to win their respective division again this year and are the top two ranked teams in the league, meaning bragging rights were on the line at Pirelli Veteran’s Arena on Saturday night in front of a packed crowd.

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Franklin junior goalie Colby Wagner was terrific in net from the opening puck drop, turning in a 38-save shutout performance to lead the Panthers to a 2-0 win.

The Panthers scored once in the first period and added on a key insurance goal late in the third period, with both goals coming in similar fashion thanks in part to Franklin’s speed.

“It’s one of eight [league games] but it’s a good one,” said Franklin head coach Chris Spillane. “It’s just fun to play teams like this, and you know every year it doesn’t matter who’s up or who’s down, when it’s Franklin-Canton, both teams show up to play. And we get to play them again in a non-league game and it will be the same exact thing, the same exact atmosphere in their building.

“It was a gritty win. Our goaltender [Wagner] kept us in this game tonight, he made some key saves. We struggled breaking the puck out, that’s typically our strongest going from defense to offense, we can fly but credit to [Canton], they took time and space away. It was just one of those typical Franklin-Canton games, it was gritty and there’s no space for anyone.”

It didn’t take long for the scoring chances to start as Canton sophomore goalie Colin Davis (31 saves) was forced into making a terrific save just seconds into the contest as senior Aidan Kuykendall found senior Ryan Sicchio streaking into the offensive zone all alone for a chance in close 15 seconds in. And seconds later, Davis denied Anthony Lampasona after a pass from Ben Paterson in a 2-on-1 situation.

Canton got its early chances too as the Bulldogs went on the power play just 63 seconds into the game. Junior Matt Anderson had a blast from the blueline handled by Wagner, and junior Colin Blake had a bid in close that was turned aside.

That set the tone for the next 40-plus minutes as the Panthers and Bulldogs went up-and-done the ice, back and forth with chances on goal. Franklin had four power plays and Canton had two man-advantage chances throughout the contest but neither team cashed in with its special teams.

The first breakout came right at the midway point of the opening period. Paterson won a faceoff in his own defensive zone to junior Logan Marchand, who chipped one up the left boards that eluded the glove of a Canton defenseman at the blue line. Lampasona raced down and got to the puck first in the offensive zone and centered to a wide-open Dan Daley and he roofed his shot just under the crossbar for a 1-0 lead with 7:47 left in the opening stanza.

“Danny Daley, he’s a player to be reckoned with,” Spillane said. “He’s fast and can shoot the puck, his center [Ben Paterson] and [Anthony] Lampasona are both good at getting him the puck. It’s a nice all-junior line to have as our second line.”

Canton nearly responded a minute later when junior Brendan Tourgee dropped a pass out front for Blake, but his deflection on net was denied by Wagner’s shoulder. The Bulldogs had another big chance with just under two minutes to play as junior Brian Middleton won a battle at the blueline and raced in on a breakaway but his backhand bid was turned away by a pad stop from Wagner.

Davis made a nice stop early in the second after Franklin’s Paterson and Daley played a little catch, the former ripping a shot that was turned aside. Canton countered with a nice tip off the stick of sophomore Travis Thomas but Wagner stood tall.

“He’s very comfortable in the net, his rebound control is really good,” Spillane said of Wagner. “They were pressuring the crease and he never got rattled. He’s our number one right now for sure, but we have two other good options too in Jack O’Connor and Joe Torraco.”

While there were chances in all three periods for both teams, both defensive groups played well to limit how many genuine scoring chances there were. Kuykendall paired with senior Liam O’Rielly while Marchand was matched up with Vinnie Pasquarosa. For Canton, senior James Young paired with classmate Griffin Hughes, freshman Teddy Shuman worked with Anderson, and senior Jack Lauro played alongside freshman Graidy Carr.

Canton did have a powerplay five minutes into the second but Sicchio had a big clear, Ben Jarosz interrupted a pass to clear the zone, and Dylan McEvoy won a key faceoff and cleared the puck himself.

The third featured more of the same with chances from both sides, including an early power play for the Panthers that Canton killed off, including a key clearance from Young.

Jack Digirolamo muscled his way into space for a shot that was tipped by AJ Thomas, only for Wagner to get a stick to it. Tourgee found space shortly after but his bomb of a shot was wide of the net.

“We had a lot of one-and-dones and I think a lot of that was the product of missing the net on some key chances, and that started their break out,” said Canton head coach Brian Shuman. “And I think we were a little intimidated by their speed, guys backing off the line and just not able to win the races to pucks. That was preventing us from getting some good in-zone time.”

Franklin tacked on a key insurance goal with just over three minutes to go in the game. The puck bounced out from behind the Franklin net, and Daley was the first to it. He beat a pinching defenseman, slapping the puck off the boards and up the ice.

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Sophomore Carter Balducci raced onto it and centered to his brother, senior Tommy Balducci and he found the back of the net to make it 2-0 with 3:04 to play.

“They have so much speed, they’ll disrupt any team they are playing against,” Shuman said. “That’s the fastest team we’ve seen all year, probably the fastest we will see all year. They can go three lines of speed, and they certainly look a lot faster in person than they do on LiveBarn. They’re a good team and any mistake that we made, they made us pay. Whether it was a bad pinch or a guy slightly out of position…our goaltender played well though and made some big stops.”

Franklin boys hockey (2-0-0 Hockomock, 6-1-0 overall) will head to Foxboro to take on the Warriors on Wednesday at 6:30 while Canton (1-1-0, 6-1-0) returns home to Ponky to take on Oliver Ames.