“Give a lot of credit to the forwards and their back pressure,” said Central Catholic coach Mike Jankowski. “We made an adjustment to have the forwards come back more aggressively to help the defense in our zone and the neutral zone.”
Sean Holly tied the game for the Raiders when he fired a turnaround wrist shot from the half-wall that Prep netminder Zach Laramie misplayed as he saw the rubber fly past his outstretched glove. Laramie made 29 stops in the game most of which came over the final two periods and the hiccup, while costly, wasn’t indicative of the freshman’s overall performance.
“I thought Zach was outstanding with the exception of that one shot,” said Hanson. “Zach was great especially in the third period.”
The Red Raiders scored the game-winner with just over a minute remaining after one of an Eagles’ defenseman tried to make a play in the neutral zone but was unsuccessful, leading to an odd-man rush the other way. With chaos in front of the net, the puck deflected off of Hester and into the back of the net.
“Hockey is such a frustrating game,” lamented Hanson. “One bounce can make or break your season.”
One positive for the Eagles was the penalty kill. Despite giving up a power-play goal in the last second of the Red Raiders’ first man-up opportunity the Eagles killed three second period penalties, including a 5-on-3 disadvantage for 80 seconds.