BRAD RILEY battles on a faceoff during action on Jan. 12 against Timberlane. Kathy Sutherland. (click for larger version)
January 14, 2013WOLFEBORO — With two of their leaders sidelined during games last week, the Kingswood hockey team needed some production from some of their other players for games against Alvirne and Timberlane.
And that's exactly what they got.
Matt Mitchell scored four goals over the course of two games and the Knight offense scored 13 goals in those two games as they defeated Alvirne by a 5-2 score and knocked off Timberlane by an 8-6 score.
"It was kind of a break through," coach Andrew Trimble said. "We finally got that secondary scoring going. Our depth chart players started to produce a little and got more involved.
"Which is what we needed," the first-year Knight coach continued.
The Knights played on Wednesday without senior captain CJ Sirrell and played on Saturday without leading scorer Chris Pollini, but continued onward for the victories.
On the road in Tyngsboro, Mass. on Wednesday, Jan. 9, the Knights gave up the first goal of the game to Alvirne, but came back and the game was tied at two with about 10 minutes to go in the third period.
Then, the Knights took over, scoring the next three goals to pull away for the win.
A shorthanded goal from senior captain Brad Riley was the backbreaker, putting the Knights over the top for the victory.
Trimble noted that the third period was incredibly key and it was something the Knights had been working on quite a bit in practice the previous days in practice.
"Of all the weeks of practice that we've had, this one was probably the hardest," Trimble said. "We made it a point this week to play in the dirty areas, where they have to work for the points.
"And they knew that Thursday would be worse than Monday and Tuesday if they didn't respond in that third period," the Knight coach continued.
After not starting out terribly well against Alvirne, Kingswood came out and scored the first two goals of the game at the Pop Whalen Arena on Saturday, Jan. 12, then held on for the 8-5 win after a back and forth battle the rest of the way.
Goaltender Shawn Goggin had a long night in net, as he had been battling illness all week. After the Owls had battled back to put three goals past the Knight keeper late in the second period, Trimble called a timeout and gathered his troops, trying to get his team to respond.
And they did.
"We took the momentum back," Trimble said. "Once we got refocused, we took it to them."
Trimble praised the work of his captains, Riley, Sirrell and Lucas Bonenfant, for helping to get the team focused every time the Owls made a run and not allowing the visitors to take the lead.
"We have some good leaders who are leading by example," Trimble said. "CJ, Brad and Lucas, they do a good job, they set the tone."
The Knights will be on the road at St. Anselm College on Saturday, Jan. 19, against Goffstown at 11:30 a.m. It is the team's lone game of the week.
Joshua Spaulding can be reached at email@example.com or 569-3126