January 12, 2013

HIGH SCHOOL BOYS HOCKEY: Small, Gagne help Cony tie EL

By Bill Stewart bstewart@centralmaine.com
Staff Writer

HALLOWELL -- The five-game winning streak is history, thanks to a few wasted opportunities, but not all was lost for the Cony hockey team Saturday evening against Edward Little at the Bank of Maine Ice Vault.

"We didn't play with that sense of urgency," Cony coach Chad Foye said. "We tried, but it wasn't there. You're going to have these kind of games throughout the season."

Zach Gagne scored a first-period goal and Tommy Small stopped 40 shots, including a few big ones in overtime, as Cony played Edward Little to a 1-1 tie in an Eastern A game.

The Rams (6-2-1) were playing their third game in four days and it seemed to be a factor as the game progressed.

Tyler Leet assisted on the goal for Cony, which is idle until hosting Bangor on Saturday.

Matt Verrill scored a power-play goal for the Red Eddies (2-4-2), who are fighting for an Eastern A playoff berth.

Zach Gosselin also made 40 saves, including nine in the eight-minute overtime.

"They are a good team," Gagne said. "We definitely didn't have our best effort, but we played OK. We definitely had some opportunities but just couldn't capitalize."

Small had eight saves in overtime, including two on mini-breakaways 21 seconds apart.

The first came with 6 minutes, 36 left when Brendon Pelletier came charging down the left wing and skated in alone on Small after a Cony defender fell to the ice. Pelletier got off a good shot, but Small gobbled the puck up with a nice chest save.

"I did what I had to do," said Small, a freshman who attends Monmouth Academy. "I needed to be there."

He was there again seconds later when Brendon Croteau split two defenders and barreled down the slot with a chance to win the game.

Croteau faked the forehand shot then went to the backhand, but Small didn't bite and came up with the save.

"He played tremendous," Foye said. "He's been consistent for us all year."

Added Gagne: "He had some really big saves for us. He kept us in it and gave us a chance to win."

Gagne gave the Rams a 1-0 lead when he scored from the top of the zone with 4:30 left in the first.

"I got a good pass and it was a perfect one-timer," Gagne said.

The Red Eddies tied it when Verrill beat Small down low with 5:13 left in the second. Trevor Haley had the assist.

"We had our chances but just couldn't finish them off," Foye said. "We didn't give up, though."

Bill Stewart -- 621-5640


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