“A lot of things didn’t go our way,” Headers first line center Ian Maag said. “Beverly’s fast, they’ve got the depth and are one of the best teams we play.”
As important as those four scores from Doherty were, the work of Biarelli in the Beverly goal was just as vital to the win. He was under heavy pressure for most of the first period, turning aside great bids from the speedy Trip Franzese as well as scoring force Tom Koopman crashing the net. Never flustered, Biarelli made a multitude of big saves; of the Headers’ 26 shots, 16 were prime scoring opportunities out front or in the slot.
“It gives you a sense of comfort when you’ve got a guy like this scoring four goals for you,” Biarelli said, nodding to Doherty next to him.
“We said before we headed out of the locker room before the game began that we were going to play this like it was a playoff game. We weren’t going to let up.”
Ryan Santo scored Beverly’s final goal; the junior right wing tipped defenseman Nick Albano’s shot from the left point inside the far post for his 7th goal of the season with 6:14 to play.
After losing their first game of the season Monday in Peabody, the Panthers (18-1-1) rebounded with three straight wins and will be the No. 1 seed when the Division 2 North playoff pairings are released today.
“It would’ve been nice to go undefeated,” said Doherty, “but that (loss) put things in perspective for us. The second season starts now; we’ve been expecting to do well in the playoffs ever since last summer’s workouts.”
Always looking for areas in which his team can improve, Gilligan wants to see his team play with more urgency as far as the physical side of the game; it took Beverly a period or so to get adjusted to Marblehead’s bodychecking.