Ice Hockey wins twice, ready for tourney

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It may have been too late to try to catch up to Newington coop in the Division III or Central Connecticut Conference standings, but Hall-Southington’s win at Newington last week might have been it most signature victory of the season.

After letting Newington get the better of them on their home ice, the Warrior Knights were ready this time, and they came out with their guns blazing as soon as the puck dropped. Just six seconds into the game, Sean Roach took the puck by himself and slipped it past Andrew Fogarty of Newington for an immediate 1-0 lead.

Moments later, Hudson Hollander was right there for the rebound after an initial save by Fogarty and found the net for a 2-0 lead. Then just seconds after coming up with nothing during a four-minute power play, Duncan Hollander recovered a loose puck and had a breakaway toward the goal. At last second, he dished the puck to Mason Woods for the Warrior Knights’ third goal of the period.

It was all said and done as the teams went in for their first intermission. Roach added one more goal to match Newington’s lone goal from Sam Hedlund for the 4-1 final. Noah Behrens-Gould had 15 saves on 16 opportunities. Hall-Southington outshot Newington, 19-16.

The Warrior Knights came back this past Saturday and won their second in a row with a 4-2 win over EO Smith-Tolland. The teams were neck-and-neck after the first intermission, but like in their previous matchup, Hall-Southington’s defense did a better job in the second and third periods, and scored a goal in each period.

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Hall-Southington outshot EO Smith-Tolland, 32-19. Roach had two goals for the second straight game to go with one assist, while Hudson Hollander and Tom Nardi had a goal as well. Cam Perez had two assists. Behrens-Gould had 17 saves.

Hall-Southington improved to 10-1 this season when they score four goals or more. On the contrary, the Warrior Knights are 3-5 when they score three goals or less.

Hall-Southington locked up a spot in the CCC south postseason tournament, which began on Thursday, March 6. The No. 3 Warrior Knights matched with No. 2 Newington once again. If Hall-Southington won, they would play Saturday, March 7 with a time and location not announced before press time. No. 1 WMRP and No. 4 EO Smith-Tolland was the other semifinal matchup.

Hall-Southington also secured a top-five seed for the Division III state tournament. They were two points ahead of New Milford for the No. 3 seed in the rankings entering this week. The Division III tournament is set to begin on Monday, March 9.

To comment on this story or to contact staff writer Spencer Dreher, email him at Sports@SouthingtonObserver.com.