Brooks vs. Tilton – In each team’s second game of the tournament weekend they each came out flying. It didn’t take long to break the seal as Brooks forward Charlie Alcorn gained separation and put home a breakaway goal to make it 1-0. The momentum swung Brooks way for the entire period until a fumble around the cage led to Tilton’s Mike Tersoni burying a loose puck to tie it up with 18 seconds left.
Tilton owned the opening to the second and two minutes in assistant captain and defenseman Brett Lockhart scored to give them the edge. Brooks kept fighting back and eventually tied it late in the frame when Charlie Alcorn struck again from the slot which sent us to the third. Early in that final frame Max Cocchi buried a rebound near the net to make it 3-2 and that was all she wrote.
Overall, Brooks looks much improved from last season: they are still just as hard to play against as before but they have more team speed and a bit more offensive creativity. They got good goaltending in the loss today and Jake Inzirillo made some highlight reel saves. Tilton just keeps coming at you in waves. They can beat you playing multiple styles and they have an athletic D core that can play physical and move the puck quickly. Mike Tersoni was a menace all game long and coaches will need to keep him on their shortlists. Tilton 3 Brooks 2
1st Star: Max Cocchi, Tilton
2nd Star: Charlie Alcorn, Brooks
3rd Star: Mike Tersoni, Tilton
Millbrook vs. Berwick – This game took a few shifts for both teams to get settled into a rhythm. For the first 10 minutes there were a lot of missed passes and players not being in the right spots to capitalize on offensive chances. The action picked up in the final five minutes and Millbrook owned the momentum as junior forward Jake Percival slid past the D and roofed one shorthanded to make it 1-0 Mustangs. It didn’t take long for him to find the scoresheet again as he worked a nice give and go with senior defenseman Bauer Morrissey, tapping it home far side to make it 2-0 after the first period of play.
After a slight delay due to Zamboni issues, the second got underway. The puck possession was largely dominated by Millbrook and they cashed in with four minutes left as senior D Bauer Morrissey ripped one from the point bar down to make it 3-0 Mustangs.
In the third period, Berwick made a massive push and put a scare into Millbrook. First was a nice follow up tally near the cage by 2004 born sophomore Brock James, followed a minute later by assistant captain (stepping in on D due to injury) Chris Dowd off a shot through traffic, which made it 3-2. Millbrook fended off the push after a nice centering feed by Andrew Kimball and a score by Kyle Neudorf. Berwick cut the lead to one with over a minute to go as older brother Carson James stuffed it home at the net and that was how the game ended despite a pulled goalie for Berwick: 4-3 final.
Milbrook is flush with talent and they play a very physical style of hockey that wears down opponents. They also have skilled puck movers on the back end who get involved offensively which adds to their depth. Berwick is willing to play the physical game too but they have a couple of players that really stand out in senior captain Tyler Gaulin and senior blue liner Mike O’Brien. Both play with pace and set the tone offensively that the rest can follow. UK native Mason Alderson-Biddulph is intriguing as well: size and athleticism will take him far at this level, especially as a junior. Millbrook 4 Berwick 3
1st Star: F Jake Percival, Millbrook
2nd Star: F Kyle Neudorf, Millbrook
3rd Star: F/D Chris Dowd, Berwick