Wildcats rally past Hingham
Weymouth takes control in third
NORTH ANDOVER — In the second period of Weymouth’s Super 8 game against Hingham yesterday, the Wildcats couldn’t find their way out of their zone with a GPS.
Hingham controlled the tempo, unleashing a flurry of shots, and took a one-goal lead heading into the third period.
But after intermission, however, Weymouth came out invigorated and flipped the script on the defending Super 8 champs en route to a 4-3 victory in round-robin play at Merrimack’s Lawler Arena.
“The way we fought back says a lot about these kids and this team,” said Weymouth coach Matt Cataldo, whose team split the regular-season series with the Harbormen. “We played a good chunk of this game back on our heels, but once the players see that they can take advantage of a team they play well.”
Said Hingham coach Tony Messina, “Down a goal, they played desperate and with a sense of urgency.”
The catalyst for the Wildcats’ turnaround was a roughing penalty. With a little more than seven minutes remaining in the game, Weymouth’s Tyler Piacentini and Hingham’s Ryan Linehan were sent to the penalty box for matching roughing penalties.
When the penalties expired, Piacentini shot out of the box and, seconds later, set up the tying goal.
“The guy in the penalty box said, ‘You have fresh legs, now go out and get one,’ and that’s what we did,’’ said Piacentini.
Piacentini trickled a pass through traffic toward the net and linemate Riley Flanagan was at the back door to knock home his second goal of the game, tying the score at 3 with 5:21 left.
“Tyler has been doing that all year,’’ said Flanagan about the pass that set up the goal.
Less than three minutes later, the Wildcats notched the winner.
Flanagan flew down the right side and centered a pass to Trevor King, who was able to poke the puck between Derek McInnis’s pads.
“This game wasn’t pretty, it was about doing all the little things,’’ said Cataldo. “They didn’t want [a loss] to their rivals to hang on their heads for the rest of time.’’
In the second period, Hingham all but lived in the offensive zone. The Harbormen came away with two goals, but could have had two more if it weren’t for a great save by Weymouth netminder Brian Brady and a hit post.
Dan Griffin tied the score at 2 for the Harbormen at 8:36 when he redirected a hard slap shot from the point by John Carlson past Brady.
With 50.2 seconds left in the frame, Linehan let loose a wrist shot that beat Brady glove side high to give the Harbormen a 3-2 lead.
Flanagan scored his first goal of the game on the power play with three minutes gone in the second period. Steve Bristol flung the puck on net from the blue line and Flanagan tipped it home to give the Wildcats a 2-1 lead.
In the first period, Weymouth’s Jonathan Wilson scored his second goal of the season off a pretty backhand feed from Ian Sheridan. Hingham’s Alex Pompeo scored a seeing-eye goal from the point on the power play with 5.2 seconds left to tie the score at 1.