With the playoffs looming in the not-too-distant future, the Sandwich High School boys’ ice hockey team proved that it can come through when it matters most with a pivotal win over rival Barnstable on Wednesday night, February 10. Sandwich fought back from a 3-2 deficit to score two third-period goals and defeat the Red Raiders by a 4-3 score, sweeping the season series with BHS.
Sandwich is now 8-1-2 overall, and improved to 3-1-1 in league play. After beating BHS this week, it’ll need a favor from the Red and White on Monday. A Sandwich win against Nauset, on February 20, coupled with a Falmouth loss to Barnstable on Monday, February 15, would allow the Knights to tie for the regular season championship. A win or a tie by the Clippers on Monday would give them the title.
Coach Jordan Mohre wasn’t thinking about the standings when his team entered the third period trailing BHS in Hyannis. He was wondering who would provide the spark that it needed to rally the team.
Freshman Josh Itri was the man to do it. Penalties were the biggest problem of the night for Barnstable, but SHS had not really made it pay for them until Itri fired home an unassisted goal at 1:37, just 25 seconds after the home team was called for a tripping infraction.
While it was a rookie who got the Knights the tie, it was a senior who scored the game-winner. At 5:14 of the third, defenseman Tim Clark took a feed from Caleb Richardson and snapped it past Conor Higgins to give the visitors the 4-3 lead.
From that point forward Sandwich used strong team hockey and excellent penalty killing to get through with the victory. “(Mike) Barrasso, Itri and Rob Cardillo were great, especially on both the penalty kill and power play,” coach Mohre said. “I loved the balance of our lineup and getting scoring from all over the place.”
Neither team allowed a lot to get through to the goalies, as Barnstable outshot the Knights, 17-14. Goalie Mitchell Norkevicius did not see a whole lot of action, but stopped the three shots he faced in the third period to help his team hold on.
Both teams scored twice in the evenly matched affair. Sandwich’s strikes came from Rob Cardillo and Jack Connolly. SHS led 1-0 and 2-1, but Barnstable answered both. The Raiders then got the lead late in the second period, on a goal from Dillon Huntington. That was the last one for BHS, though, and SHS rallied for two in the third to win.
Sandwich will host Martha’s Vineyard at 3:30 at Gallo Ice Arena on Friday, February 12. It will then welcome Nantucket to town for a game on Monday at 2:30 PM.