Tilton is taking home the Championship trophy after defeating Holderness with a final score of 5-2. Braintree, MA native Owen Cuddyer stood tall in net, helping the Rams to their victory.
# 1 Tilton struck first against #7 Holderness early in the first period on a goal from Shawn Leslie (Braintree, MA). The Rams were able to keep the puck moving in the offensive zone creating multiple scoring opportunities leading to the scrum that produced Leslie’s goal .
Holderness was able to respond with 6:49 left in the first period when Isaiah Fox (Pierrefonds, QC) passed to the top of the point for Carter Rose (Brasher Falls, NY). Rose was able to take a hard, low shot on net to tie the game.
The scored remained 1-1 throughout the second period and play remained even between both teams. Both Holderness’ Connor Androlewicz (St. Louis, MO) and Tilton’s Owen Cuddyer (Braintree, MA) were tested but were able to stand their ground in net. Both teams had power play opportunities including a 5 on 3 chance for Holderness with 3:33 left in the period. Holderness was unable to capitalize but had multiple scoring chances including a shot from Joe Biddle (Andover, MA), which hit the post.
The third period took a turn for the Rams when Jagger Benson (Lynnfield, MA) was able to fire a puck, top corner on a redirected poke check of Leslie to make the score 2-1 with 6:45 left in the period.
Tilton was able to put themselves up 3-1 on the powerplay with a goal from Brendan Sjostedt (Tewksbury, MA). Sjostedt was able to control a rebound out in front and put it home with 4:47 left in the period. Holderness took another penalty, with 4:38 left in the game. Jack Seymour (Chelsea, QC)of Tilton was able to take a shot and bury the puck with 4:15 left to go.
With Tilton now up 4-1, the Rams called a timeout to review play for the remainder of the game. Holderness was able to come out after the timeout and control the puck in the offensive zone. Carter Rose took a shot from the point where Paxton Bunting (San Francisco, CA) was able to bury for Holderness, making the score 4-2.
Play continued to go back and fourth and with time ticking. Tilton declined a penalty shot with about two minutes left, preferring the power play. They almost immediately took a penalty. Androlewicz was pulled from net, leading to the fifth and final goal of the game, empty net from Brendan Sjostedt.
1st Star: Jagger Benson, Tilton
2nd Star: Owen Cuddyer, Tilton
3rd Star: Brendan Sjostedt, Tilton
NZ’s Take: Both teams like to push the pace and move quickly through the neutral zone. The flow of the game was alittle choppy through the first two periods as there were several minor penalties. Each teams Power Play got several chances, including a 5-3 for Holdnerness in the second. The third period really opened up with Tilton finally capatalizing on its opportunities.
For Holdnerness, the play of Connor Androlewicz ( St Louis, MO) cant be overlooked in net. Although he let in four goals, he was calm under pressure and saw easily through screens. Kevin Pitts (Pt Claire QC) was solid up front. He isnt a burner but he moves well in space and sees the ice well. On the back-end, Carter Rose (Brasher Falls, NY) plays a steady two-way game. He doesnt panic with the puck and made some slick reads to break the puck out of his zone. Its clear to see he is at the beginning of his development curve.
For Tilton, Jagger Benson (Lynnfield, Ma) plays in all situations. He gets up the ice quickly and is creative making plays. At times he tries to do too much which gets him in trouble but overall he does several things well. Brendan Sjostedt (Tewksbury, Ma) has a great first step and can separate through the middle of the ice. He finds soft areas in the offensive zone and makes smart touch plays.