The Capital Area Patriots played catch-up all night against the Bishop Foley Unified Warriors. The Warriors, who never trailed in a game that went the distance in over time, settled for a 3-3 tie.
The game was played Friday night at Jackson’s Optomist Arena.
The Warriors Brett Russell, who had to sit-out the first half of the season as a transfer student, scored his first high school goal, and also notched his first assist in the game.
Freshman Dominic Finazzo opened the scoring in the game with a Warriors goal scored with 11 minutes left in the first period. Russell’s assist was on this tally.
Warriors head coach Dave Williamson was impressed with the play of his underclassmen throughout the game, “The underclassmen stepped up. Dominic Finazzo played well, Alberto (Nava), Brett (Russell), Stevie (Jacques). They stepped-up. They came out and they played hockey.”
The Warriors took a 1-0 lead into the locker room at the end of the first period…
…And the Patriots came out charged-up to start the second period.
“In the second period, (The Patriots) came out hard, they took it to us. We were on our heels, but we were all right. We regrouped and we did fine,” said Williamson.
That aggressiveness paid off when the Patriots tied the game 1-1 early in the second period.
The Warriors Dominic Doxen recaptured the lead for the Warriors with just under 10 minutes left in the second period. Rudy Stuglin and Matthew Blake got the assists.
The 2-1 lead for the Warriors last only 33 seconds as the Patriots quickly tied the game up again.
With the score knotted at 2-all, Warriors goalie Daniel Collins was relieved in net by senior goalie Alex Day. It was Williamson’s plan for the night to play both of his goalies, starting with the sophomore Collins.
Williamson was pleased with the play of Collins and Day. Smiling he said “The goalies did really well. With Daniel, our eyes are open a little wider watching him play.”
The Warriors took the lead again 3-1 in the third period on Russell’s first career goal. It was set-up by the hard work of Captain Kaylan Taylor who kept the puck in the Patriots zone on a sprawling move inside the blue line.
“Kaylan, he just comes and he brings it,” said Williamson. “He doesn’t say many words, he just goes out there and leads.”
The Patriots never gave up. Nine minutes into the third period, they tied the game at 3-3. That’s where the score stood at the end of regulation time.
Both teams had scoring opportunities in over time. The one that took everyone’s breath away saw the Warriors Tyler Hiltunen parked on the doorstep of the Patriot’s goal just outside the crease. He took a cross ice pass from Finazzo and jammed the puck at Patriot’s goalie Colin VanWyke who made a great save. It kept a tie from turning into a loss for the Patriots.
When time ran out in OT, and the final score stood at 3-3.
Williamson liked what he saw from his team. “We moved the puck well. We crashed the net. That’s one thing we have to do. We have to get all three guys there. We did in the third period. Tyler Hiltunen had one shift where he had three or four checks, and that’s huge… It was a fun game.”