By BRIAN JENNINGS
One player netted four goals to eliminate the fourth-seeded Warrior-Knight ice hockey team from the CCC South regional tournament. On Thursday, Mar. 2, Hall-Southington fell, 4-2, to top-seeded Farmington Valley in the semifinals. The Generals are currently fifth in Division II.
“We needed to play a smarter game against a team like this,” said Hall-Southington coach Brian Cannon. “We haven’t been able to pull ourselves up to that level. We just can’t keep our concentration often and long enough to do it.”
The Warrior-Knights put the first dent in the scoreboard after Michael DiPietro found the back of the net early in the first period. Farmington Valley answered with four-straight goals though with a pair in the first, one in the second, and one in the third.
Timothy Arena not only completed the hat trick, but scored all four goals for the Generals.
“He’s smart and skilled, and everyone knew it,” the coach said. “We came in with a plan to keep the kid in front and not let him go, but we let him go left, right, and center. It was painful.”
Jeremy Fortin scored the final goal of the game with about eight and a half minutes remaining in the contest.
Zach Monti saved 18 shots on goal. Hall-Southington took 24 shots on goal and committed four of the eight penalties in the game. The Warrior-Knights had just three hits in the second period.
“We also wanted to come in with a more physical presence, and we failed to do that too,” said Cannon. “I thought we were going to play a physical game tonight. It’s not good enough to do it.”
Farmington Valley eventually went on to capture the regional title with a 7-4 win over No. 3 EO Smith-Tolland in the championship game at Trinity College in Hartford on Saturday, Mar. 4. EO Smith-Tolland defeated No. 2 Wethersfield-Middletown-Rocky Hill-Plainville, 3-1, in the semifinals.
Top-seeded NW Catholic won the CCC North regional title with a 5-3 win over No. 2 Simsbury in the other championship game. NW Catholic defeated No. 4 East Catholic, 3-1, and Simsbury defeated No. 3 Glastonbury, 2-1, in the semifinals.
Next up for the Warrior-Knights is the Division III tournament. In the first round, the sixth-seeded Warrior-Knights are scheduled to host No. 11 Newington Co-op (3-14-3) on Monday, Mar. 6 at 7 p.m. Hall-Southington is currently 9-8-3 overall.
For this week’s box scores, click here: (http://southingtonobserver.com/2017/03/07/weekly-scoreboard-for-the-march-10-edition/). To contact sports writer Brian Jennings, email him at BJennings@SouthingtonObserver.com.