H-town earns late tie with Raiders; Northern cruises past LaPax
Huntingtown pulled out an improbable tie, while Northern kept rolling in a Maryland Student Hockey League Southern Conference doubleheader Wednesday night at Capi- tal Clubhouse in Waldorf.
In the opener, Easton Cipressi scored two goals late in the third period to help Huntingtown earn a 4-4 tie against the Raiders.
The Hurricanes (4-12, 3-1-2 MSHL Southern Conference) trailed 4-1 midway through the sec- ond period, but Cy Har- wood started the comeback when he scored on a tap-in with 9.6 seconds remaining in the period.
Cipressi pulled Hunting- town to within a goal when his a slapshot trickled past Leonardtown goalten- der Matthew Corolla (27 saves) with a second un- der two minutes remaining in the third.
“I was looking for the rebound, but it ended up trickling in,” Cipressi said.
“He’d like to have that back,” Leonardtown head coach Jerry Leger said of Corolla, “but the problem is we allowed them to shoot. He does a good job in there. He’s kind of small so he doesn’t take up a whole lot of net so he has to move around a lot. It makes it tough, especial- ly when you go up against some good shooters, but he does the best he can.”
Forty-three seconds later, Cipressi complet- ed the hat trick — he scored the Hurricanes’ first goal in the first period — when he wristed a centering pass past Corolla to tie the game.
“Cy made a nice pass over the player’s stick and it left me wide open,” Cipressi said. “I had to get the shot off quick so it wouldn’t get blocked, and it hit the far post and went in.”
“We came out slow, no doubt about it, and our goalie took a lot more shots than he should have taken,” Huntingtown head coach John Krohn said. “We just weren’t clicking in any of our lines. The second period we changed up some of our lines and started clicking and then the third period we went to basic hockey and were able to bury some.”
The Hurricanes had a good chance to go ahead for the first time, but, on a two-on-one, Samuel Nyman’s hard shot from the right side sailed over the net.
“The first period we started out a lot faster than we normally have and were taking it to them. They didn’t know what hit them,” Leonardtown’s Bryce Leger said. “But we got comfortable with our lead and I think our tempo just dropped off. It was disappointing.”
The Raiders (3-4-1, 2-41) grabbed a quick 2-0 lead on goals by Andrew Severson and Nick Burch and later went ahead 3-1 when Leger broke in alone and tucked the puck past Huntingtown goaltender Cameron Mackiewicz (28 saves) as time expired in the first period.
“I had zero clue the clock was ticking down,” Leger said. “I’m just going to the net and looking for my teammates and trying to put it on net. Yeah, I was surprised it was that close, but I’m thankful for it going in.”
Leonardtown surged ahead 4-1 on a penalty kill when Burch stole the puck off a defender’s stick in front of the Hurricanes net and fired a shot into the net.
“Any time you give up a shorthanded goal right in front of your own net and you’re already behind can be tough, but the guys regrouped,” Krohn said. “Whether you’re up by five or you’re down by five, there’s no quit and that’s what we expect from them.”
Leonardtown was unable to hold leads of 2-0 and 4-1.
“We had possession, we were in their zone most of the time, but by the sec- ond period they were start- ing to get a bit fatigued and stopped skating a bit,” Jerry Leger said. “Then we had some penalties that didn’t help us so we had to cycle some people. That really gave us some issues and by the time we got to the third period we weren’t as mentally strong and went back to our bad habits and not playing the way they were taught to play. I seriously think that’s a game we should have had.”
Northern downs LaPax
In the nightcap, they may have lost their home rink to fire, but Northern remained red-hot and scored seven unanswered goals to pull away from LaPax and cruise to a 9-3 win.
Wirth the win, the Pa- triots (8-0, 7-0) remain undefeated on the season and, according to Northern head coach Erik Lars- en, are currently ranked No. 2 in the state behind Churchill of Montgom- ery County.
“We’re doing good,” Larsen said. “I’m real pleased with how they work with each other and the chemistry. All around it’s been a good year for us.”
Northern suffered a set- back last week when its home rink Tucker Road Ice Rink in Fort Washing- ton burned down, forcing the Patriots to scramble to find practice times and reschedule games. North- ern played Thomas Stone at 10:30 p.m. last Friday at Bowie Ice Arena.
“It’s difficult because you have to try and find ice [time] and ice [time] is sold out everywhere,” Larsen said. “There’s not that much [ice time avail- able] anyway.”
“It’s crazy,” Northern’s Cody Middledorf said. “It’s hard to believe really, but we’re getting through it.”
Middledorf erupted for five goals on Wednesday to help pace the Patriots to the win.
“I just shot and it seemed like everything went in,” he said. “There wasn’t really anything to it. I just put pucks on the net.”
Justin Robinson had two goals and an assist, Michael Cross and Jus- tin Lantz each added a goal and Wesley Crofoot chipped in with a pair of assists.
Northern led 2-0 before the game was three minutes old on two goals by Middledorf in 37 seconds, but LaPax battled back to tie the game on goals 53 seconds apart from Garrett Estep and Trevor Reece.
“I think our guys got a little relaxed after we got the two-goal lead, but they’re a good team and they weren’t going to give it to us and they took advantage,” Larsen said. “They were going to work hard and skate hard. They have some talented guys and if we let up, that’s what was going to happen and they proved it.”
The Patriots rallied by scoring the next three goals before the end of the period and added three straight goals to open the second period.
LaPax (3-2-2, 2-2-2) — which is comprised of teams from La Plata, Patuxent, Great Mills, Calvert, The Calverton School and Chopticon — received two goals from Reece. Derek McKee added an assist.
“I think we played great,” LaPax head coach Joey Martel said. “I can’t complain about the way these kids skate; it was fun. These guys are fun and they’re consistent and when you look at our record and our goals forgoals against it’s pretty even and we have the lowest penalties in the Southern Conference. You see it’s a balanced team.”
LaPax will play Bowie in the second game of doubleheader at Capital Clubhouse starting at 6:45 tonight. The opening game will see Huntingtown play Stone. Northern and Leonardtown are off until Wednesday when they will play one another at 6:45 p.m. at Capital Clubhouse.
LaPax’s Garrett Estep, left, and Northern’s Justin Lantz battle for control of the puck in Wednesday’s game at Capital Clubhouse in Waldorf. The Patriots won the contest, 9-3.