By Team Reporter-Nate Gordon ’16
In a game in which Williston (9-6-1) saw more scoring production from lines other than its top line, the Wildcats defeated the Albany Academy Cadets (6-9-3) 6-2 at home on Saturday, January 25th.
Going into the second period, the score was tied at one. In the first, less than four minutes into the game, junior forward Brandon Borges skated into Williston’s offensive zone before passing the puck to senior Max Willman. Willman evaded one Cadet defenseman and then scored on a backhand shot. Junior forward Tyler Scroggins also had an assist on the play.
Eight minutes later, on the power-play, Albany’s leading scoring, junior Shawn Knowlton, scored his fifteenth goal of the season. This tied the game at one.
Less than two minutes into the second period, junior defenseman Chris Dumont scored his first goal of the season to give the Wildcats a 3-1 lead. Dumont was on the left (facing the goal) side of the rink, near the boards, when he got the puck. He took a slap shot that never left the ice and found its way into the back of the net.
After the game, when asked if he meant to really shoot, or was just looking for someone to tip the puck in, Dumont said, “Well, I’d like to say [I did shoot it there], but the truth is that I was looking for a stick, I saw [Scroggins] in front there. I was trying to get [the puck] down low, hoped it go in, but I got the monkey off my back, my first [goal].
Under nine minutes later, the Wildcats took a 3-1 lead when Scroggins scored his ninth goal of the year. Senior defenseman Seth Cupak and Dumont had the assists on the goal.
Although the Wildcats entered the final period with a two-goal lead, Head Coach Derek Cunha was not pleased with his team. He told them they needed to stop talking to their opponents after the whistle and that they need to play less individualistically.
The Cadets made it a one-goal game just 1:18 into the final eighteen minutes when junior forward Knowlton scored his second goal of the game.
However, the Wildcats responded by scoring three unanswered goals in the final 15:03.
The first, scored by junior Will Flynn and assisted by senior forward Kyle Hall came just under two minutes after Albany’s goal.
Five minutes later, senior Anthony Mantz gave Williston an authoritative 5-2 lead. This was Mantz’s second goal of the season. Junior forwards Brandon Bork and Rourke Ferguson had the assists on the play.
With fifty-five seconds remaining, Williston sealed the deal with a shorthanded goal. Mantz picked up the puck and skated down the right (facing the goal) side of the ice. He then slid the puck to Ferguson who tapped the puck into the net for his fourth goal of the season.
It was ironic that the Wildcats scored on the penalty kill considering that they had eight power-plays which amounted to 17:06 minutes—over thirty percent of the game–and never scored with the man advantage.
Senior goaltender Tim Nowacki stopped 29 of 31 pucks (.935%).
This was the first of a two-game home stand. Next, on Monday, the 27th, Williston will face Westminster (8-6-2).