Freshmen deliver in Broncos’ rout of Storm
Ponaganset duo of Briggs, Besser scores five goals in blowout win
BURRILLVILLE — Ponaganset didn’t provide a player to the Burrillville/Ponaganset/Bay View co-op hockey team last season.
In the first game of this season, a pair of Chieftain freshmen combined for five goals Thursday night against overmatched the South County Storm. Freshman forward Isabella Besser scored what turned out to be the game-winning goal 10 minutes, 20 seconds into the opening period. She added two more goals in the third period to finish her hat trick, while Ponaganset classmate Kristen Briggs scored twice in a 9-0 victory over the Storm at Levy Rink.
“I like how the kids moved the puck,” BPBV coach Cortney Lacey said. “Once the freshmen click and they get used to playing with the rest of the team, they’re going to be really good. They’re fast, they move the puck, they’re smart and they know where to go. Once they get used to playing with each other, they’ll be fine.”
BPBV (1-0 Division I) wasn’t tested by the team that beat them to claim the 2017 state title. South County put one shot on senior goalie Emily Etheridge in the opening period and the Bronco only had to make one save in the third period to record a shutout. On the other side of the ice, Peyton Newman made 28 saves and allowed two goals before she was replaced midway through the second period. The Broncos ended up putting 52 shots on net.
The Broncos are back in action tomorrow night when they travel to Thayer Arena to take on Warwick/ Prout co-op.
“Emily is going to have to come up big for us this season. She’s a senior, she’s a captain and she knows what she has to do,” Lacey said. “Especially against teams like La Salle and the good teams, she knows what she needs to do. It seems like she always does that in the big games. She did it last year.”
South County (0-1 Division I) was hemmed into its own zone from the opening whistle, so it was just a matter of when – not if – the Broncos would score against Newman, who was in net when the teams met in the state final in 2017. The opening goal came at 10:20 when freshman Avery Moriarty slipped a cross-crease pass for Besser to slide into an open net.
The Broncos doubled their lead with 15 seconds left in the period when sophomore defenseman Diana Poland found Burrillville sophomore Madison McCutcheon for a goal. McCutcheon scored twice, while Poland played all 45 minutes and recorded a goal and three assists.
“Diana sees the ice so well and everything we do is around her,” Lacey said. “She can control the game and she does a good job controlling the team. We only play three defensemen, so she’s always on the ice. Against some of the bet- ter teams like La Salle and Mount she’ll have to take a break, but in most games she’s going to play the whole time.”
While the Storm didn’t put a shot on Etheridge in the middle period, the Broncos continued to bombard Newman with shots from every angle. It took the hosts 9:21 of the period to score their third goal, as Poland took a feed from Burrillville’s Cora Gaucher to score from close range. McCutcheon made it 4-0 late in the period after good work from Burrillville’s Alix Etheridge.
BPBV scored early and often in the third period. It took Besser just 1:56 to score her second goal, and Briggs scored her first goal at 3:23 of the final period. Besser, Briggs and Bay View junior defenseman Lizzy Ng finished the scoring. Alix Etheridge and Moriarty finished with three assists, while Ng also had an assist.
“All the girls were trying to go 100 miles per hour at the start of the game,” Lacey said. “We need them to learn to slow it down and play their game. High school hockey is different from lower levels of hockey. Everyone, especially the freshmen, just need to be more patient when we have the puck.”
Follow Branden Mello on Twitter @Branden_Mello
South County 0 0 0—0
BPBV 2 2 5—9
First period – BPBV, Isabella Besser (Avery Moriarty, Kristen Briggs), 10:20; BPBV, Madison McCutcheon (Diana Poland), 14:45.
Second period – BPBV, Poland (Cora Gaucher, Alix Etheridge), 9:21; BPBV, McCutcheon (Etheridge), 12:54.
Third period – BPBC, Besser (Poland, Moriarty), 1:56; BPBV, Briggs (Lizzy Ng), 3:33; BPBV, Besser (Moriarty, Poland), 4:30; BPBV, Briggs (unassisted), 7:22; BPBV, Ng (Etheridge), 12:15.
Saves – SC, Peyton Newman (28 saves); Mandy Koskela (15 saves); BPBV, Emily Etheridge (2 saves).
Burrillville senior goalie Emily Etheridge, seen here in a contest last season, only needed to make two saves to record a shutout in BPBV’s 9-0 victory over South County Thursday night at Levy.