Hanover HS (15-1-1) at Canton HS (16-0)

Canton Holds off Hanover 4-3 at Home

The Canton Ice House was home to one of the bigger games of the Mass HS Hockey season as 15-1-1 Hanover High School paid a visit to 16-0-0 Canton High School. Not only could this game have implications in the D2/D3 playoff seeding, but could potentially impact the Super 8.  The game did not disappoint as both teams came out firing and played hard until the final buzzer.

Canton got the scoring started less than a minute into the game when Timmy Kelleher took a feed from Ryan Nolte and found the back of the net. Hanover would answer less than a minute later and as Manning Morris scored off a shallow angle after taking a pass from Ethan Davis.

The second period started just a quickly as the first as Ryan Nolte intercepted a D-to-D pass at the blueline and rushed in alone before beating the goalie under the bar. The shorthanded goal gave the home team a brief 2-1 lead. This lead was short-lived as Hanover again would tie the game less than a minute later on the same power play. Lucas Lanagan drove wide around the defense and wheeled the net. As he wheeled the cage he fed the puck to the slot and Sam Perkins was there to bang it in. Before the second was over, Canton would strike for back-to-back goals to take a 4-2 advantage. John Hagan took a breakout pass on his near wall, he drove the length of the ice and when he got to the tops of the circles fired a low snapshot past the Hanover netminder. Less than 45 seconds later, Chris Lavoie took a feed in the slot and buried the snapshot. Canton looked to be in control heading into the final frame.

The third period was more up-and-down hockey with each team getting some quality chances. Hanover made it a 4-3 game with 11 minutes to go. Nate Delprete finished a rebound off of a 2-2 rush and stuffed the puck past the Bulldog goalie. Hanover had several good chances the rest of the period, but Michael Staffiere closed the door with some nice saves.  Canton was able to hang on for a 4-3 win.

Three Stars:

1st Ryan Nolte, (Canton (1-1-2))

2nd Michael Staffiere (Canton (W))

3rd Manning Morris, (Hanover (1-1-2))

NZ’s Take

Both of the teams will be tough outs in the HS playoffs. Canton is a big, heavy team that has two lines that can put the puck in the net. Hanover is smaller but has defensemen that move the puck well and some forwards that can really move through the neutral zone.

For Canton, John Hagan had a nice night. He is a long, athletic winger that has a deceptive shot which he shoots in stride. He has some touch on the puck and made a few plays in transition that led to scoring chances. Ryan Nolte is a skilled forward that is controlled and finds the soft sports in the ice. He plays through contact and doesn’t hesitate to work around the net. On the back-end, Owen Lehane is counted on to play big minutes. He is athletic and doesn’t make many mistakes. He makes a good first pass out of his end and doesn’t hesitate to join the offensive rush.

For the visitors, Lucas Lanagan runs the offense. He can really move and can make defenders miss in space. At times he is counted on to do too much and hold the puck too long. Manning Morris is a skilled winger that sees the ice well. He has good touch and looks back-door for open teammates.