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Friday, December 27, 2013

Thursday's Recap

By: Luke Devoe

Scores from Thursday, December 26, 2013 --- scores via
1:00South Windsor0-4West HavenBennett Rink - West Haven
West Haven D1 Christmas Tournament
2:00St. Bernard/Bacon/NFA10-3Norwalk/McMahonSoNo Ice House
2:00Fairfield Prep3-4Bishop HendrickenAdelard
3:00St. Joseph3-7Notre Dame,FfldBennett Rink - West Haven
West Haven D1 Christmas Tournament
4:00Staples/Weston/Shelton0-8Daniel HandNorthford Ice Pavilion
5:00Ridgefield1-2GlastonburyBennett Rink - West Haven
West Haven D1 Christmas Tournament
6:00Branford2-3North HavenNorthford Ice Pavilion
6:30Stamford3-6WesthillTerry Connors Rink
7:00Xavier1-4Notre Dame,WHBennett Rink - West Haven
West Haven D1 Christmas Tournament

Nearly half the state's games yesterday happened at Bennett Rink in West Haven, host of the D1 West Haven Christmas Tournament.  We shall start there.  In the two loser's bracket games early in the day West Haven prevailed 4-0 over a struggling South Windsor squad behind two goals from junior Wyatt Condon and a perfect 22 saves from junior netminder Mike Savino.

In the day's second game, Notre Dame-Fairfield blasted St. Joseph to the tune of 7-3.  The Lancers were led by top guns senior Christian La Croix and junior Jonny Suporn who both potted two goals in the winning effort.  Head coach Steve Hetherman opted to go with his third goalie in as many games as transfer Jesse Burns took the crease for this one stopping 27 of 30 shots.

In semifinal number one, Ridgefield took on Glastonbury.  The Tomahawks played a stellar game clogging up shooting and passing lanes and general just stifled any flow the Tigers tried to generate.  Tomahawk goalie Kyle Thibodeaux was stellar throughout finishing with 40 saves.  While he's only seen action in two of the team's three games, he's there guy and needs to be if they want to build on this early success.  Parsa Entezarian got the Tomahawks on the board in the second and Matt Holdaway got the eventual game winner five minutes into the third.  The Tomahawks advance to play NDWH in the tournaments final.  Ridgefield is a tough luck (1-2).  They fell to Prep in a close one on opening night, beat an overmatched West Haven team and on paper are probably a better team than Glastonbury.  However, on this night they were outworked and outhustled and ran into one of the state's blossoming goaltending talents.

Heading into the second game, I didn't really know what to expect from Xavier.  The roster undertook a major overhaul, some players are still suspended, long time mainstays have moved on and there's a new bench boss.  So when Falcon top gun senior Andrew Meoli scored midway through the first to give Xavier their only lead, I was thinking maybe this club could surprise.  NDWH put those thoughts to rest quickly on the backs of three point nights from senior captain Matt Dumas (2 G, 1 A) and juniors Kyle (3 assists) and Ryan Lynch (1 G, 2 A).  Nearly doubling Xavier's shots and forcing the Falcons into a large number of third period penalties, NDWH cruised to improve to (3-1), their third straight win after a season opening loss to New Canaan.  Lost in what seemed like a lopsided final was a very strong 32 save night from Xavier junior goalie Ben Guidobono.  He will be vital this year if they are to be ultimately successful.  On the other end, in my opinion NDWH sophomore Justin Daddio had his best game of the year allowing only the Meoli first period goal.

In other action, Fairfield Prep fell 4-3 to Bishop Hendricken (RI) in an opening round contest at the Mount St. Charles Holiday Face Off.  The Jesuits took a 3-2 lead midway through the third on a Kenny Kochiss goal, but Hendricken's Jon Finelli answered back quickly to tie ultimately leading up to the heart breaking Jamie Armstrong game winning goal with only 20 seconds left on the clock. Matt Beck stopped 29 in the losing effort while Steven Bayles and Justin Blanchette also scored for Prep.

St. Bernard-NFA-Bacon got their first win of the year in blow out fashion rocking Norwalk-McMahon 10-3 thanks in large part to junior Andrew Gagnon's four goal effort and a five point night from senior Kevin Teskey.

Daniel Hand moved to (3-0) on the year with a rout of their own, topping Staples-Weston-Shelton 8-0 Thursday at the NIP.  Danny Braumann potted four goals in that one while Chase Briggs and Nate McCann combined for the shutout.

Stamford eager to shrug off two lopsided losses to top end D1 and D2 teams got their chance Thursday against D3's Westhill.  The Vikings had other ideas topping Stamford 6-3.  Ryan Silk netted two goals and added two assists as Westhill ran off six unanswered in this comeback win.

In one of the more exciting games of the day, the North Haven Indians continue to announce their presence at the D2 level with a 3-2 win over top ranked Branford.  Getting outshot 52-20, the Indians were certainly opportunistic and made their shots count.  North Haven collected goals from Vin Fasulo, Mike Tantorski and Tyler Luedee.  Junior goalie Andrew Graziano was magnificent stopping 50 shots in the victory.  North Haven improves to (2-1) on the year while Branford drops to (2-1) on the year.

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