Salisbury and Avon Skate to 2-2 Tie
Neutral Zone was in attendance virtually to watch a rivalry game between the Avon Old Farms Winged Beavers and the Salisbury School Crimson Knights on Friday night at Salisbury School in Connecticut. The two teams will play a three game weekend set, with tomorrow at Avon and Sunday back at the Salisbury School. The game started slow with each team trying to feel each other out. Each team had some sporadic chances, and the Knights would have two Power Plays but the period would end scoreless 0-0.
The Second period started the same way with each team playing physical and limiting chances to the perimeter of the rink. Salisbury had started to tilt the ice a bit, but the Winged Beavers would strike first. After a breakdown in the neutral zone, Avon would walk-in on a 3-1. 2005 Hudson Miller would finish the odd-man rush by taking a feed back door and roofing the puck. Before the end of the second, the Knights would even the game as Calum Chau would snap a low hard shot from the point that was redirected off a AOF player and past his own goalie. The second period would end tied at one.
Avon would start the third period with more than three minutes of Power Play time as Salisbury was penalized with a major penalty for a hit to the head at the end of the second. Avon would capitalize on the man advantage after some sustained zone time. Seth Robinson would find Liam Verdoni, who one-timed the puck past the Knights’ goalie. A few minutes later, Salisbury would again tie the game as Jackson Ebbott won a puck battle and fired the puck on the net. The rebound came right to Massimo Lombardi who collected the puck and slid it past the Winged Beaver netminder. Avon would have a few Power Plays down the stretch but would not be able to capitalize and regulation would end 2-2.
Avon would have a 5-3 Power Play in the extra session, but Connor Callaghan stood tall. The game would end in a 2-2 tie.
The game was physical and a bit sloppy as both teams were still trying to get their footing. Both teams however, were able to make some nice plays in space on the big ice. There were several penalties called and each team spent a good amount of time on the Power Play. Several players on each team had good nights.
For the home team, David Chen is counted on to drive the offense. He is slick with and without the puck and uses his feet to create chances. He won a majority of the draws and possesses the puck for long stretches. He plays in all situations and takes good angles pressuring the puck. He is slippery below the dots and slides off pressure getting to the net. Connor Driscoll does a lot of little things well. He plays at top speed and has a high motor. He plays physical and can be used in all situations. He is responsible in his own end and stops on pucks. He has a good set of hands and can make defenders miss in space. He has a quick release and can shoot in stride. On the backend, Liam Lesakowski is a big body that moves fairly well. He is direct and makes confident, simple decisions. He plays physical and limits forward to the perimeter of the rink. He closes well and chips pucks away from pressure. He has a long reach and limits forwards time and space below the dots.
For the visitors, Liam Verdoni had a solid game. He plays in all situations and uses his speed to create issues. He is balanced and beats defenders to the perimeter of the rink. He finds the soft areas of the ice and has a quick release on his shot. He sees the ice well and identifies passing options quickly. Patrick Neal also had a strong game up front. He is smaller but has a high motor and compete level. He is athletic and uses good spacing to find soft areas in the offensive zone. He slips in-and-out of pressure and is always around the net and puck. Seth Robinson is slick on the back-end. He retrieves pucks well and quickly turns the up the ice. He took a bad hit and was able to come back from it and assist on the second goal. He sees the ice well and knows where he is going with the puck before it gets to him. Finally, in between the pipes, Connor Callaghan had a strong showing. He was tested frequently in the second period and stood tall to the task. He controls rebounds and doesn’t give up on the play easily. He kept his team in the game and gave them a chance to win down the stretch.
- Liam Verdoni, AOF
- Massimo Lombardi, Salisbury
- Conor Callaghan, AOF
Photo Credit: Dan Hickling/Hickling Images