The snow did not accumulate as much as feared Thursday night, February 18, around Gallo Ice Arena, but the goals did for the Sandwich Blue Knights in the 39th Canal Cup. Sandwich dominated from the outset and took home the annual championship between the teams that both call Gallo Ice Arena their home rink, 9-0.
Sandwich improved to 11-1-2 for the year and has one regular-season game, this weekend against Nauset, before the start of the Cape and Islands League tournament. For Bourne the game was their last of 2021. They end the year at 3-8-1.
Jon Sheehy was named Bourne’s MVP for the night. Mike Barrasso won the award from the Sandwich side, as he played a big hand in the Knights’ lopsided win.
Senior Rob Cardillo paced the offense for Sandwich in the first period as he played a role in the first three of his team’s four first-period strikes. On the first, with SHS on a power play, Cardillo fired a shot from the right circle that beat BHS keeper Nolan Roche (24 saves) but hit the far pipe and caromed out to the opposite circle. Josh Itri collected the rebound, walked the puck to the net and sniped inside the near-side pipe, on the top shelf, for a 1-0 lead.
Cardillo later had a clean breakaway on Roche. The goalie got just enough to stop the initial offering but was helpless to hinder the charging Mike Barrasso, who chipped in the second goal of the game at 7:34.
Two late goals in the first all but put the game out of reach. Cardillo made it 3-0 with an impressive drive to the net through the middle of the ice, sending in a snap shot at 11:30. Then, with just 16 seconds to play in the opening frame, Kevin Jordan deked through the defense and lifted a backhander upstairs for a 4-0 lead after one.
SHS continued to click in the second period. Drew MacKinnon made it 5-0 with a goal at 1:06 with a rocket from the top of the left circle. Exactly one minute later Caleb Richardson snapped one in from the high slot, and then Aiden Barrett got in on the action with a goal at 5:25.
In the third period, Itri snapped home a power-play goal with a shot from high in the slot that was fed to him by Cardillo, who picked up his third assist of the game on the play. Barrett got his second of the game at 12:38, popping in a MacKinnon rebound to account for the final score.
Starting SHS goalie Mitchell Norkevicius halted the seven shots he saw before turning things over to senior Ben Moreno. In his final Canal Cup, Moreno prevented everything sent his way from finding its target. He made 11 saves in the combined shutout. Norkevicius had seven stops.
Bourne’s chances were few and far between. The Knights’ speed and strength advantage kept the ice tilted for large stretches of the evening. The Canalmen’s best chances to score came in the third period, with a power play. Jon Sheehy and Tyler Evans both had quality scoring chances with the advantage, but Moreno made the stops, including a great one to preserve the shutout against Evans.
Sandwich 5, Nantucket 3
Nantucket had a valid claim to the title of the best team on Cape Cod and the Islands before it came to Gallo Ice Arena. Sandwich, which is also in that conversation, won a battle between two of the top clubs thanks to a strong third period, as they beat the visitors by a 5-3 score on Monday.
Jack Connolly scored two goals to lead the scoring for the Knights. Connolly put in the first of the game for his squad, tying it up at 1-1 late in the first and then scored at 9:29 of the second to break the tie and put his team ahead. The second came with Nantucket changing as he slipped in behind the defense and was able able to create space and tuck it away.
Nantucket tied the score shortly after, but the game did not remain deadlocked for long. Kevin Jordan redirected a Drew McKinnon blast for a power-play goal at 13:59 to send the Knights into the second intermission with a one-goal advantage.
SHS never trailed after that. A big power-play goal at 5:13 from Tim Clark gave his team some breathing room. Clark finished off a feed from Colin Norkevicius on the post to make it 4-2.
Nantucket got its own power-play goal at the 12:43 mark of the third to make things interesting. However, with the goalie out, Sandwich was able to ice it with 50 seconds left to play. Rob Cardillo filled the vacant net for the Knights.