Williston Stuns New England Powerhouse, Salisbury, 6-1
On Saturday night, the Williston boy’s hockey team soundly defeated the Salisbury Crimson Knights 6-1 in the Wildcats home opener. The teams entered the campaign riding two vastly different waves into Lossone Rink; just seventy-two hours earlier, Salisbury defeated Founders League rival Taft with a convincing 5-0 win, while the Wildcats were licking the wounds of a 7-1 defeat to Kimball Union Academy in Meriden, New Hampshire.
Early in the first period it looked as if Salisbury was going to use the momentum of their Wednesday victory by controlling the play off the draw putting solid pressure on the boys in blue. However, Williston settled in quickly and at the 16 minute mark, senior Brendan White got the ‘Cats on the board with his first goal of the season, a power play, assisted by senior Mike D’Ambrosio and new Junior Jake Durocher. Six-and-a-half minutes later on a power play, Durocher scored on a quick snapshot from the left circle-top with a nifty pass from Schofield to put the Wildcats up 2-0. The period was back and forth and the Wildcats entered the dressing room leading.
The second period was dominated by Salisbury who, with excellent transition work and the help of a number of power play opportunities, peppered new sophomore goalie, Greg Iverson, with shots, early and often. The Williston penalty kill was up to the challenge and with 7:24 left in the period and killing another penalty, junior Sam Milnes intercepted a Salisbury pass and powered his way down the ice to the net, cutting across the crease and beating Trinity-bound goalie Nick Sorgio on a deceptive backhand to forehand move putting the Wildcats up 3-0. Salisbury continued to pressure Williston but could not solve the riddle of Iverson. The period ended with Williston holding onto the lead.
With a renewed sense of urgency, Salisbury opened the third period with a hard-working goal by Jacques Bouquot assisted by Alex D’Paolo just fourteen seconds in. The Williston faithful secretly wondered if Salisbury had found the Wildcat’s number but at 11:47 on the power play Jake Durocher wheeled with the puck in the zone and made a touch pass to second-year senior Owen Silvia, camped out on the bottom of the right circle, who found Nick Schofield streaking to the far post. Schofield one-timed the pass by Sorgio and Williston’s lead was 4-1. A little over five minutes later, new junior, Billy Smith, made an almost identical pass to Schofield on the far post beating Sorgio near-side to put Williston up 5-1. Williston put the proverbial nail-in-the-coffin with 3:24 left in the game when Smith took a shot in the low slot from Sam Milnes that got caught under Sorgio’s pad but Milnes jammed in the rebound. The game would end in 6-1 victory for Williston.
For his 52 save effort, Iverson garnered the player of the game sending the Wildcats to the victory bell for its first win of the season.
Williston is headed to Ashburnham, MA this Wednesday for a 4:45 tilt against another New England powerhouse, the Penguins of Cushing Academy. Williston will be back at Lossone on Friday night against Academie St. Louis from Quebec on Friday night at 7 and on Saturday night at 6 against defending New England champions, the Gunnery Highlanders. Good seats are still available for both contests.