Tag Archives: Assabet Valley Patriots

NH Avalanche 2000 – The last month

Since the last write-up I posted regarding the 2000 NH Avalanche Bantam Major Elite quite a few things have happened. Christmas and New Year’s have come and gone. High School hockey seasons have started. Kyle Greer has joined the roster and his offensive skills have been noticed. Today I will try to recap a few things here and get set for the remainder of the season.

The last game I reported here on this site was a one-sided loss to Assabet Valley played on December 7th. High School teams had just been selected and players making their school teams were still trying to figure out a few things. Among other things, these players and their families had to figure out the balance between school, sleep, homework, early morning rides versus work schedules, the new needs for school colored equipment, the school’s schedule for ice time, how many days per week, etc. That was last year, literally.

On December 14th the Avs hosted the Boch Blazers for a late afternoon game. The Avs, missing many of their players, played hard, and were competitive despite losing 4-0. The Avs could not click quite enough to generate sustained offensive pressure or to cash in on the chances they did have. The effort was solid despite having a short bench and taking 7 penalties in the game.

On December 21st, the Avs showed up at the Ice Den in Hooksett, NH for a home game that was never played, as the visiting Patriots from Assabet Valley did not show up. The Avs took advantage of the ice time by playing a 3-on-3, full sheet of ice, 45 minute game against themselves. The Avs did win that night.

Fast forward through the Holidays, a New Year started, dozens of high school practices, figuring out the schedules, who was playing where, and how much, and finally when can players make it to Bantam games, or not.

The Avs started 2015 with a road game in East Boston, Mass. on a Sunday morning. The overnight led to Sunday morning and all were greeted with a few inches of wet snow, some sleet, freezing rain, and rain, depending on what zip code you may have been in.

Jonathon Last looks to move the puck. (Photo by Terri P)

Jonathon Last looks to move the puck. (Photo by Terri P)

The players made it to Porrazzo Rink and battled the Advantage Ice on the ice sheet. The Avs played well throughout the game. Actually, they even carried the play for segments of the game. Even so, the Avs fell behind in the middle period, allowing a pair of power play goals to the home team. After two periods the Avs trailed on the scoreboard, 4-1. The lone goal had been scored by newcomer Kyle Greer, assisted by Cody Sullivan and Clay Sanders. In the third period, the Avs scored twice, but the comeback came up short as they lost 5-3. Third period goals were scored by Max Lajeunesse and Cody Sullivan. The first goal was scored by Max on an assist from Sebastian Beal.

Avs score a goal against Advantage Ice. (Photo by Terri P)

Avs score a goal against Advantage Ice. (Photo by Terri P)

Then, Sullivan’s goal was set up by Caiden Paradise and Kyle Greer. The Avs may have lost the game, but the effort was good, the officiating was questionable which reflected on the score sheet, as the home team was whistled for just one penalty after the first seven penalties had been called on the visitors. The game also marked the first time that ‘the team’ had really played together since the Turkey Tournament at Thanksgiving.

Next, Sunday the 11th witnessed the Avs first home game of 2015. The Avs welcomed a familiar foe in the Assabet Valley Patriots. Five weeks ago, this same Patriot roster beat the Avs 10-1 down at their barn. Sunday, the 11th, today, it was a different story. I mean, a completely different story. Less than two minutes into the game, the visitors scored first, and the Avs found themselves trailing before all lines had even played a shift. Over the next 43:46, however, the Patriots would not score again. The Avs answered the Assabet Valley goal with a goal of their own less than three-and-a-half minutes later. Mike Perry scored the goal on a nice redirection from in front of the net. He tipped a well placed shot along the ice from Sydney Herrington, up, and over the goaltender’s shoulder, and in to the back of the net. Herrington’s shot had been set up by a pass from Sebastian Beal at the point. The period would end with the score tied 1-1 and the effort from both clubs about the same as well.

In the second period the Avs seemed to play their way into even more chemistry between their lines as they were all together again for the second weekend in a row. Sydney Herrington gave the Avs a 2-1 lead as she raced across the slot and ripped a wrist shot into the back of the net. The goal came off of a nice feed from Max Lajeunesse who had been sprung up the left wing boards by a nice outlet pass from his own defensive end by Caiden Paradise. After two periods the Avs maintained a 2-1 advantage and were getting the better of the chances.

The third period saw Kyle Greer score a goal on perfectly placed shot just inside the post, and under the crossbar. Greer took a well timed pass from Lajeunesse and made no mistake. Cody Sullivan had started the play with a nice feed to get Max flying up the right wing before delivering the pass to Greer. Herrington had another great chance for the Avs from the slot but the goaltender got a piece of the shot and the puck rose high enough to glance off of the crossbar and over the net. The Avs would finish out the effort with teamwork apparent at both ends of the ice, and hold on to a 3-1 win. Spencer Burgess and Gavin Cram were both solid in net and each made key saves in the victory. Clay Sanders, Christian Levesque, Tyler Whiting, and Jonathon Last all contributed to the victory, getting chances to score or creating the chances, while shutting down the opponent.

The NH Avalanche 2000 team will be back on the ice for their next game on Sunday morning, January 18th at 10:45am versus the Seacoast Spartans. The game will be played at Thomas F. Sullivan Arena on the campus of Saint Anselm College. See you then. Thank you for stopping by.

 

 

NH Avalanche 2000 @ Assabet Valley Patriots – Valley Sports Arena

Last night the NH Avalanche 2000 team traveled to Concord, Mass. to play the Assabet Valley Patriots at the Valley Sports Arena. The was the first game the Avalanche had played since high school tryouts had been decided earlier in the week. The Avs had a few kids missing so they called up some players, three to be exact, from the Bantam Minor Elite team. The players called up for this game were, Maxwell Dorrington, Mason Drouin, and Eric Favreau.

The night was most definitely not one for the memoirs as far as the Avs were concerned. The final score ended up being 10-1, with the Avs getting a late third period goal, but it was a little too late to make such a comeback.

Things we may have learned, or even reaffirmed from Sunday night’s game, in no particular order.

  • Dorrington, Drouin, and Favreau can all skate. They played hard, hustled, and tested the waters against a much larger, more experienced team.
  • #26 on Assabet Valley wasn’t on their roster, but he alone was bigger than some of the hybrid vehicles I see on the roads these days, and he could play.
  • Against teams like the Patriots, any game the Avalanche play, short of solid, sound, and structured will likely result in scores similar to last night.
  • Goaltending must be sharp to save the teams’ bacon on mistakes made out in front of the crease. Some times it’s not fair, but chances still remain to save the day.
  • Turnovers happen, and minimizing them are a must against Assabet Valley. If a turnover, or mistake does happen, and they will, heady hustle should be the response in order to offset the error.
  • When this Avalanche team moves the puck well, they can get chances to score against anyone.
  • The Avs can be effective on the forecheck when they are willing to put some skin in the game and not just skate ‘fly-bys’ or go through the motions. See the goal scored by Sebastian Beal , set up by Eric Favreau. The two players picked off the puck on the forecheck and put it in the net.
  • It’s always better when the scoreboard operates the way it’s supposed to.

Any how, it’s on to the next game, and that is the beauty of a new day. Anything can happen.

NH Avalanche 2000 vs. Assabet Valley Patriots – Ice Den 2

Less than 24 hours after their first victory of the season the NH Avalanche 2000 team was back on home ice against the Assabet Valley Patriots. Just three weeks ago these teams met at the Ice Den Arena in a contest that resulted in a 5-2 win for the visiting Patriots. That game, as I saw it, was a battle of wills and the Patriots got the better of it. Today was different, although the result was another loss to the Patriots.

Today the Avs opened up a little bit shaky and the Patriots took advantage by piling up some early offensive zone possession time. That didn’t last too long and the balance of the period was played pretty evenly. After one period of play there was no score in the game and only one minor penalty had been called along the way.

In the second period not much changed really except that the Patriots made the Avs pay for every little mistake; Immediately. Over a span of 11:07 in the middle period, the Patriots scored FIVE even strength goals on just 6 shots. Patriot forward, #17, Maxwell Ray scored the first four goals on consecutive shots. #81 for the Patriots, Daniel Desmarais, assisted on all four of those goals, and ended up with one goal and five assists in the contest. Before the period ended, the Avs did get a goal when Sebastian Beal started a play out of nothing by throwing a shot at net which hit the goalie’s pad and the side of the net, but the puck bounced out to Cody Sullivan who followed with his own shot. That shot was saved but the rebound was quickly pounced on by Max Lajeunesse who rifled it home. The goal was the fifth goal this line combination had scored in just two and a half games. The period would end with the Patriots firmly in control, 5-1.

The visitors scored a power play goal early in the third period, taking a 6-1 lead and it looked like the Avs might skate out the balance of the game and just mail it in. However, one of the endearing things about this Avs team has been their willingness to work hard, to try, and not give up. Moments later Sydney Herrington created a great scoring chance with a beautiful move just outside of the crease. She didn’t score but Michael Perry gathered the rebound, paused nicely to gather the puck and improve his angle, then ripped a shot into the net. The Patriots would score one more time and lead 7-2 for the rest of the game. The Avalanche did play hard down the stretch and actually had several chances with good puck possession. I didn’t track all of the shots taken in the game by both sides, but I would be willing to bet that the shots ratio was a whole lot closer than the goals scored ratio. It was one of those days where mistakes were turned into goals in the blink of an eye. And if you blinked at the right time and watched the balance of the game you’d never have felt like the score was that lopsided.

The Avalanche return to action on Friday night the 28th in the Turkey Tournament. Their first game is scheduled to start at 6:30pm Pacific Time, that’s a 9:30pm start here in the East, at Governor’s Academy. Then they’ll play two games on Saturday, at Dover and UNH respectively.

Finally, Happy Thanksgiving everyone. Remember, we all have a lot to be thankful for, including tremendous kids.

 

NH Avalanche 2000 vs. Assabet Valley Patriots – Ice Den

Saturday saw the return of the NH Avalanche 2000 team to the ice in-game action at the Ice Den versus the, steep in hockey history, program from Assabet Valley (Concord, MA). I will do my best to recap the game here.

The first period ended scoreless. The period started slowly, choppy, unorganized, and rather sloppy if you ask me. Av’s goaltender Gavin Cram made several huge saves in the opening five minutes while his team scrambled to get their game bearings in order. Although there was only a single penalty and zero goals that counted in the opening period, I did take away a couple of things from the period. First, the Assabet Valley Patriots (AVP) did score a goal, but the puck was directed into the net off of a Patriots’ skates and waved off. Then it seemed that AVP was winning every single battle for the puck, getting there first, harder, faster, and with more confidence. Lastly the home team missed on at least half a dozen opportunities to head man the puck and stretch the AVP defense, forcing them to loosen up and play defense over the expanse of the rink.

The second period was a sign of things to come. Five penalties called and three goals scored in the period set the stage. The Av’s scored first on a rebound put in the net by Max Lajeunesse. The play was set up and assisted by Jon Fast and Clay Sanders. Two minutes later AVP scored to the tie game after the Av’s turned the puck over in their own end. Cram left the game for Spencer Burgess with the score tied 1-1 midway through the second period. AVP would take a 2-1 lead on a pretty goal just seconds into a power play and the period would end with the score 2-1.

The third period picked up where the second period left off, more hitting, more penalties, more goals, and more of AVP winning pucks and being the aggressor in all the gaps between players and the puck. There were ten penalties called, including a game misconduct, as well as four more goals. In a nutshell, the Av’s had a two-man advantage for 1:11 and managed just one shot that made it through to the goaltender. At the time, the score was only 3-1 in favor of AVP. They had taken a two-goal lead early in the period when the Av’s turned the puck over only 30 feet in front of their own net. After another turnover in their own end, the Av’s trailed 4-1 and were shorthanded when one of the missing ingredients from earlier in the game was utilized to perfection. Cody Sullivan made a long, aerial pass from his own blue line on the penalty kill, to Max Lajeunesse (Cody to Max, our own version of the French Connection) who easily got behind the defense, skated in, dazzled the goaltender and scored the shortie. Just 41 seconds later, a Patriot forward stripped our defender, in the defensive end, clean of the puck and scored to make the final score 5-2.

This game looked to me like two teams who matched up pretty well, but one team just wanted every puck more. AVP played with the arrogance that often accompanies the bragging rights earned by winning the edges that need winning.

Later this week I hope to get the player profiles posted here. I thank you for those of you who have answered the few questions I sent to make things a little more fun. If you haven’t sent them to me, please do. Thank you.