Even in a loss, Trinity head coach Mike Connell saw something Tuesday he thinks bodes well for the future of his program.
“I loved the way my freshmen played today,” said Connell following his team’s 3-0 loss to Hanover in the second round of the Manchester Monarchs Christmas Hockey Classic at JFK Coliseum.
In other action Tuesday, Goffstown defeated Manchester Central 10-5, Bedford beat Manchester Memorial 9-1 and in the late game, Bow nudged Concord, 3-1.
The third and final set of games in the round-robin format resumes Wednesday at 2 p.m. when Central and Bedford meet. Memorial and Goffstown play at 4 p.m., Trinity challenges Bow at 6 p.m and Concord and Hanover skate at 8 p.m.
Connell praised the play of forwards Aiden Ross, Andrew Reed, Declan Clougherty, Marc L’Heureux and goalie Ryan Brewritt, all freshmen, who contributed something positive to the team.
“I thought they played hard, smart and were in position for the most part to make a play,” said Connell. “They’re getting a taste of varsity hockey and, if they continue to play this way, they’re going to earn more ice time. It gives me a lot of hope for the future of our program.”
Trinity’s freshmen weren’t enough to stop Hanover senior forwards Grant Morhun, Will Smith (power play) and Jake Acker, each of whom scored a goal. Acker assisted on Smith’s power play goal and Owen Stadheim also had an assist.
“Winning the loose pucks was encouraging for us today,” said Hanover coach Dick Dodds. “Each game we’re starting to build team unity that will hopefully get us into the playoffs later this year.”
Hanover goalie Luke Ratliff turned back 21 shots for the shutout.
Goffstown 10, Central 5: The Grizzlies scored seven first-period goals for a 7-1 lead and coasted to the win.
Sophomore Sebastian Beal led the offense with three goals and teammates Mickey Bridgeman, Tyler Riendeau and Noah Charron each scored twice. Max Lajeunesse, who had the other goal, and Griffin Cook each had three assists. Goffstown netminder Curtis McKay stopped 14 points.
Central trailed 9-1, but made it a respectable game by scoring four of the last five goals. Freshman defenseman Garrison Gagnon tallied twice and teammates Casey Hoag, Bowen Bilodeau and Sean Mulholland each tallied once. Freshman forward Wil Hebert had two assists and sophomore goalie Adam Richardson collected 15 saves.
Bedford 9, Memorial 1: A seven-goal blitz in the second period by Bedford dampened a spirited Memorial team, which trailed 2-1 after the first stanza.
Griffin Gagne and Jack McDonough powered the Bulldogs with two goals apiece. Lighting the lamp once for Bedford were Kyle Greer, Kristen Perras, Jack Sylvain, Nick Cannone and Colin Voloshin, who had two assists. Bedford goalies Erik Voloshin (eight saves) and Patrick Gately combined for 12 saves. Memorial’s lone goal was scored by Rickie Beauparlant.
Bow 3, Concord 1: All the scoring came in the third period. Bow snapped a 1-1 tie with 2:51 left when Austin Beaudette swooped in on a rebound off a shot by linemate Ryan Tobeler for the game-winner. Tobeler added an empty-net goal with 41.5 seconds left.
The Falcons took the early lead on a power play tally by Doug Champagne with 6:57 to play, but Concord answered 1:34 later when Alex Marceau wristed one home.
Concord’s Spencer Burgess stopped 17 shots and Bow netminder Nate Carrier had 24 stops, including two big ones at the expense of Concord forward Colin Kastle.
The standings after two rounds had Bedford leading the Wally Tafe Division at 2-0, followed by Goffstown (1-1), Central (1-1) and Memorial (0-2). The Hubie McDonough Division found Hanover (2-0) leading the pack ahead of Concord (1-1), Bow (1-1) and Trinity (0-2).
The top two division winners after today’s round will play in the 6 p.m championship game on Thursday.