Foxboro Ties Taunton With Third Period Comeback

Foxboro Boys Hockey
Foxboro players celebrate Ronnie McLellan’s fourth goal of the night, which earned the Warriors a 5-5 tie at Taunton. (Josh Perry/HockomockSports.com)

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TAUNTON, Mass. – Foxboro went into the first intermission leading by a goal, but as the Warriors came out of the locker room for the third period, they found themselves trailing by three and in need of a reaction. Despite Foxboro dominating the first 10 minutes of the third period, Taunton remained in control of a three-goal advantage and seemed to be skating to a big two points.

Those last five minutes of Saturday afternoon’s game at Aleixo Rink turned into a wild ride.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

Foxboro scored three times and Taunton had a breakaway saved by backup goalie Jack Spinney. Ronnie McLellan’s tip with just 37.8 remaining on the clock, his fourth goal of the game, salvaged a 5-5 tie for the Warriors and sent both teams home with a point.

“We definitely showed a lot of character in the third period,” said Foxboro coach Mark Cedorchuk. “We just kept coming at them and our guys were hungry. We felt like it was just a matter of time until we got pucks to the net and got them through.”

The third period started with the Warriors on the power play and an early penalty on Taunton added more fuel to Foxboro’s momentum. Eoin Reager danced around three Tigers on the left wing, but was unable to beat Taunton goalie Sean Bunker (21 saves) five-hole. Bunker also had to quickly backpedal and make a blocker save when Sebastian Ricketts got a tip in front that nearly looped into the net.

While Foxboro was dominating the third (outshooting Taunton 13-5 in the period), the hosts still seemed pretty comfortable. That changed with 5:07 to play. Kirk Leach was given loads of time on the puck in the high slot. He waited, looking for a pass, before turning and firing a wrister into the top corner on the stick side.

Suddenly, the Warriors had life. McLellan nearly got his third goal of the day with a shot through the five-hole but Brady Nichols was able to clear the puck off the line. Less than 10 seconds later, McLellan completed his hat trick to bring Foxboro within one.

Nichols was close to scoring his fourth goal and putting the game away only for Matt Grace to clear his shot away from the far post. With 90 seconds to play, Taunton had a golden opportunity to seal the points when Michael Albert got behind the defense. He deked and went to his backhand and tried to slide the puck through the five-hole, but Spinney stayed low and made a huge save.

Taunton coach Kris Metea said, “Mike tried to go five-hole and he had him, which is where you want to go on that big of a goaltender, but it was a big save by the goalie and that was definitely a turning point.”

About a minute later, that save turned out to be even more important. Reager sent the puck on net and McLellan was in the right spot to redirect the shot just inside the far post, stunning the home crowd.

“Ronnie is such a smart player,” said Cedorchuk. “He just works his tail off. His competitiveness is second to none. I knew when that first one got through it was just a matter of time.”

Foxboro took the lead midway through the first period. Leach created the opening with a rush down the right side and his pass into the middle was one-timed by McLellan off a stick in front and past Bunker. The lead lasted less than two minutes, as Taunton responded on the power play. Nathan Fernandes passed the puck out from behind the net to Nichols, who crept in to the left face-off dot and smashed a one-timer past Foxboro starting goalie Espen Reager (14 saves).

Dylan Pothier worked an opening for Ricketts to have a shot on goal but Bunker made the stop. Then Leach thought he had scored and the one official ruled his shot a goal, but after a discussion it was (correctly) ruled to have come back off the post. The Warriors would go into the break with the lead after McLellan tipped in a shot by Jack Watts on the power play with 1:23 left in the first.

The second period was completely dominated by the Tigers, who outshot Foxboro 15-5 in the frame and scored four times without response.

Metea was asked if he had a special team talk before that period and he replied, “You’re right there, just keep doing what you’re doing, let’s create turnovers, get into transition, and when our power play is out there we’ll take advantage. Nothing really special, just stick to our system and we’ll be right back in the game.”

On the power play, Nichols had a shot from the point kicked aside and Camden Faria’s rebound was sent wide. The puck was kept in at the far boards and worked back behind the net again. Jack DeMoura passed it to Nichols, who had moved into the same position as he scored from in the first. This time he took a touch and roofed his shot just under the bar.

“Our power play allows him to slip into that open position,” said Metea. “He knows how to read where he is and our center coming from behind the net finds him pretty well. He deserves the hat trick.”

Albert, who is now only two points shy of 100 for his career, nearly put Taunton in front with a close-range tip only to have Espen Reager make a pad stop. The goalie was helpless to deny Albert’s next scoring chance. Shorthanded, he stole the puck in the neutral zone, shrugged aside a defender against the far boards, and then cut inside across the crease. Albert lifted his backhand to make it 3-2.

Reager, the reigning league MVP, has been outstanding this season, keeping the Warriors in games against some of the best teams in the Hock. Saturday was a struggle and two goals in 12 seconds would be the end of his day. First Nichols completed his hat trick with a wrist shot from a couple feet inside the blue line and then Albert got his second with a quick shot from the slot.

“The second period was one of the worst periods we’ve played all year,” Cedorchuk admitted. “We just weren’t getting to loose pucks. They got in a couple of good shots that normally our goalie makes saves on but he didn’t tonight. It happens. He can’t be great every night. I know it hits home with him, so I know he’ll rebound from it.”

Trailing 5-2 heading into the third was a big hill to climb, which only got higher as the time wore on, but the Warriors managed to stick with the plan and managed to fight their way back into the game. Taunton will rue the missed opportunity to get a win.

“We didn’t do what we needed to do,” said Metea. “You can’t lay off the gas and expect good things to happen when you make mistakes like that.”

Taunton (4-8-2) will be at home for the next four games, starting with a visit from Stoughton on Wednesday. Foxboro (4-4-4) faces an important visit from Attleboro on Wednesday in a game that both teams will need for their playoff hopes.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

Thursday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 12/26/19

Today’s games are listed below.

Boys Hockey
King Philip, 4 vs. Milton, 2 – FinalKing Philip built a 3-0 lead in the second period and added an important fourth goal in the third period to skate past Milton and into the championship game of the Quincy Youth Arena Holiday Tournament. The Warriors scored first as Jack Coulter lit the lamp with assists from Conor Cooke and Rocco Bianculli for a 1-0 lead through 15 minutes. KP tacked on two more in the second with Joe Boselli scoring unassisted and Coulter netting his second, from Cooke. Milton got on the board to make it 3-1 heading to the third. Aidan Boulger scored on a feed from Noah Ray to give the Warriors a 4-1 lead. The Wildcats scored on a power play with the goalie pulled in the final minute. KP will play North Quincy in the final on Saturday.

Oliver Ames, 0 @ Winthrop, 3 – FinalThe Tigers took a one-goal deficit late into the game but Winthrop scored on a late penalty and added a third in the final minutes to get the win. Senior goalie Owen Connor played well in net for the Tigers while freshmen Sean McCarthy and Jack Perron had strong games.

Stoughton, 6 vs. Tri-County, 3 – FinalStoughton/Brockton broke into the win column behind a six-goal outburst against Tri-County in the consolation game of the Bellingham Boosters Tournament. Junior Dante Massaro led the charge offensively, scoring a hat trick while junior Kyle Cruickshank scored twice and junior Ryan Flannery found the back of the net once. Junior goalie Ryan Spanno made 26 saves in net for the win.

Taunton, 2 @ Middleboro, 1 – Final – Taunton scored a pair of goals inside the final five minutes of the game to stun Middleboro with a come-from-behind victory. Camden Faria scored both goals for the Tigers, including the game-winner with just 16 seconds left to give Taunton two points. Brady Nichols recorded a pair of assists while Michael Albert and Connor McGrath each had one. Sean Bunker made 19 saves in net to earn the victory.

Girls Hockey
Mansfield/Oliver Ames, 7 vs. Walpole, 5 – FinalMansfield/Oliver Ames needed less than a minute to open the scoring, eventually skating away with a 7-5 win in a high-scoring affair. Emma Pereira and Alex Ledin each scored a pair of goals to lead the way for the Warriors, who led 3-1 after one and 6-4 heading into the third. Ella Waryas, Tess Luciano, and Melissa Shanteler all scored once in the win while Emma Garland, Sam Ledin, and Reese Pereira each recorded a pair of assists.

Saturday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 01/26/19

Today’s games are listed below.

Boys Hockey
Foxboro, 1 @ Attleboro, 3 – FinalAttleboro received goals from three different players on its way to a key win over visiting Foxboro. Kyle McCabe, Ryan Morry, and Sam Larkin each found the back of the net for the Bombardiers while Cam Littig had an assist.

Franklin, 5 @ King Philip, 2 – FinalFranklin tied the game at 2-2 with less than a minute left in the second period and then outscored the Warriors 3-0 in the final period to earn a key division win, moving into first place with one league game left to play. KP had a 1-0 lead after one period and took a 2-1 lead in the second but Franklin knotted the score with 51 seconds left in the second period. Franklin took a 3-2 lead just two minutes into the third, and then tacked on two goals in a two minute period halfway through the third. Cam Cassella, Matt Holmes, Scott Elliott, Shane McCaffrey, and Joey Lizotte each had a goal for Franklin. Brendan Shandley and Jack Coulter (from Garrett Maxwell) had goals for KP while James Lewis made 20 saves in net for the Warriors.

Mansfield, 2 @ Oliver Ames, 4 – FinalOliver Ames scored three straight goals between the first and second periods to take a 3-1 lead, and then tacked on an empty net goal in the final minute of the game to secure two points and a win over Mansfield. Hornet junior Joseph Troiano put Mansfield 1-0 on an assist from Coleman O’Brien but OA’s Max Ward (from Brett Williams) tied the game with 3:16 to go in the first period. Freshman Bryan Kearns (two assists) finished off a scrum in front in the second to put OA up 2-1 and James Beatty found Colin Bourne for a one-timer to give the Tigers a 3-1 advantage after two periods. Mansfield’s Jack Garland scored shorthanded on a breakaway early in the third to make it a one-goal game but Jake Gottwald iced it with an empty netter in the final minute. Owen Connor had 22 saves in net for the Tigers.

Taunton, 9 @ Stoughton, 4 – FinalTaunton senior defenseman Dylan Nichols scored two of his three goals in the first period and Camden Faria netted a pair in the first as the Tigers built a 5-1 lead after a period and never looked back. Nichols and Stoughton’s Sean Doherty traded goals to start the game but the Tigers scored four straight to take a big lead. Taunton’s Cam Sneyd had three assists in the opening period. Sean Doherty scored twice for Black Knights.

Girls Hockey
Canton, 6 vs. Norwood, 0 – FinalAfter scoring her 50th career goal last game, Lauren Fitzpatrick scored the first four goals of the night for the Bulldogs. Maggie Malloy and Lizzie Tassinari also scored in the win.

Franklin, 3 @ Medfield/Norton, 1 – Final – Three different players each scored once as Franklin rolled to a win on the road over Medfield. Cassi Ronan (two assists), Regan Paterson (assist) and Amanda Lewandowski each found the back of while Gabby Colace (13 saves) earned the win in net for Franklin.

King Philip, 1 vs. Westwood, 4 – Final

Mansfield/Oliver Ames, 1 vs. Medway, 1 – FinalEmma Pereira scored the lone goal of the game for the Warriors, putting them up 1-0 in the third period but Medway was able to find the equalizer.

Wrestling
Hock Super Quad (Canton, Franklin, Foxboro, King Philip, Taunton, Stoughton) – Click here for a photo gallery from this event.

Hock Super Quad (Mansfield, Milford, North Attleboro, Oliver Ames, Sharon) – Click here for a photo gallery from this event.

Boys Swimming
Stoughton, 52 @ King Philip, 95 – Final

Girls Swimming
Stoughton, 61 @ King Philip, 82 – Final

Boys Gymnastics
Attleboro vs. Braintree, 10:00AM

Thursday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 02/23/17

Today’s games are listed below.

Hockey
Canton, 7 vs. Boston Latin, 3 – FinalCanton overcame a two-goal deficit to finish the season with a win. Junior Bubba McNeice and sophomore Ryan Nolte each scored a pair of goals for the Bulldogs while Tommy Kilduff, Johnny Hagan and Jack Goyetch each scored once in the win.

Franklin, 5 vs. Barnstable, 2 – Final

Taunton, 9 @ Durfee, 3 – FinalTaunton senior Zack Albert registered four points while classmates Nick Terry, Cam Carnes and Jordan Hoey each notched three points in the win. Albert scored twice and had two assists, Terry found the back of the net twice with one assist, Carnes scored once with two helpers and Hoey had three assists. Mike Volkmann and Cam Welby each added a goal an assist while Jake Roberts and Owen Ross each scored once. Cam Sneyd and Andrew Carter each had two assists while Camden Faria had one assist. Goalie Justin Chappell (16 saves) also had an assist in the win.

Girls Hockey
Canton, 3 vs. Walpole, FinalCanton’s Colleen Kelleher recorded her seventh shutout of the season for the Bulldogs.

Wednesday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 12/14/16

Today’s games are listed below.

Hockey
Attleboro, 6 @ Foxboro, 4 – FinalAttleboro’s Jake Parker netted a pair of goals while PJ Elliott, Cam Littig, Dylan Wallace and Ryan Morry each scored once as the Bombardiers opened the season with a non-league win over Foxboro.

Franklin, 5 @ Bridgewater-Raynham, 2 – FinalJuniors Luke Downie and Brendan O’Rielly each scored a pair of goals while classmate Jeremy Miller scored once. O’Reilly and senior James Kilroe each recorded two assists as the Panthers opened the season with a win.

King Philip, 1 @ Oliver Ames, 4 – FinalJunior Eric LeBlanc led Oliver Ames with two goals while sophomore Colin Bourne and senior Jack Maloney each found the back of the net once. OA goalie Zach Walsh made 20 saves. Cullen Gallagher and Rory Madden each had an assist.

Mansfield, 2 vs. Winthrop, 3 – FinalMansfield led 1-0 after two periods but three straight goals from the visitors made all the difference. Matt Farragher and Tim Arnold each scored for the Hornets.

North Attleboro, 8 vs. Dedham, 2 – FinalClick here for a recap of the game.

Taunton, 14 @ New Bedford, 0 – FinalTaunton freshman Mike Albert registered seven points, scoring once with six assists. Sophomore Jack Patneaude scored twice and had two assists and sophomore Jaden Weyant scored once and had two assists. Eighth grader Camden Faria scored his first career goal and also had an assist while senior Chris Gomes scored twice, including his first career goal.

Wrestling
Canton, 51 @ Oliver Ames, 27 – FinalOliver Ames got wins from Liston Funai (138, pin), Eric Bernardi (152, pin), Sean Cosgrove (160, major) and Jay Fruci (195, pin).

Foxboro, 57 @ Milford, 18 – Final

Sharon, 15 @ Franklin, 52 – FinalFranklin’s Jordan Carlucci, Brian Farrell, Ian Bakalars, Dylan Maclean, Ed Cropper, Seamus Cogavin, Myles Polito, Kyler Colella, Jack Coughlin, and Brian Perry all won for the Panthers.

North Attleboro @ King Philip, 7:00

Mansfield, 58 @ Taunton, 18 – FinalTaunton’s Josh Grasso (126), Nuno Camara (182) and Elijah Simmons (195) each won via pin.

Swimming
Boys
Canton, 103 @ Attleboro, 64 – Final

North Attleboro, 70 @ Franklin, 86 – Final

Girls
Canton, 86 @ Attleboro, 84 – Final

North Attleboro, 80 @ Franklin, 85 – FinalJunior Ashley Loomis was a double event winner, taking first in both the 200 and 500 freestyle. Franklin swept the 100 freestyle with senior Helen Huang taking first, senior Leah Benoit coming in second and junior Audrey Finn finishing third.

Girls Hockey
King Philip, 2 @ Canton, 3 – FinalSophomore Maggie Malloy netted a pair of goals and classmate Lauren Fitzpatrick scored one – the game-winner in the third period – and added an assist.

Franklin, 6 vs. Leominster/St. Bernards, 3 – FinalSophomore Reagan Paterson netted a hat trick to pace the Panthers in their first game of the season. Junior Jackie Connelly added two goals and an assist while Maddie Hinkley scored once.