The Sandwich High boys’ hockey team wasted little time in getting its season off on the right foot.
The Blue Knights scored three goals in the first period en route to a 7-2 shellacking of the visiting Abington Green Wave on Thursday, December 6, at Gallo Ice Arena. In addition to the game being the first of the season for both teams, it also marked the first high school hockey game in the state. That was a point of pride for head coach Jordan Mohre.
“It’s one of those cool things where you wait all year long to get out there and play. There’s that anticipation. Opening the year for the entire state is pretty cool,” Mohre said.
Junior Sean Connolly scored his first of two goals to pace the Blue Knights early, finishing off a shot from senior Andrew Childers just three minutes into the action. About two minutes later senior Jack Hemeon finished off a pass from classmate Jonathan Stutzman, who recorded three assists in the matinee game.
Sophomore Rob Cardillo had a big game, recording the first hat trick in state for the 2018-19 season. He had his first goal at the 8:16 mark of the first period to give Sandwich a 3-0 advantage heading into the first intermission.
Thirty-nine seconds after the Green Wave got on the board, Cardillo was true on Sandwich’s first shot of the period to push Abington’s deficit back to three, 4-1. His third of the game came with 5:10 left in the second period on an unassisted shot.
Paired with Stutzman, who returned to the team after playing juniors previously, and sophomore Mike Barrasso on the same line, Cardillo was one-third of Sandwich’s most productive offensive line on the night.
“We put those guys together early in camp and they really developed a chemistry, even on the penalty kill,” Mohre said of the unit. “I think you’re going to see that chemistry continue to develop. [And Barrasso] is going to be doing a lot of things that don’t necessarily show up on the scoresheet, but he adds a bit of grit to that line.”
Cardillo added, “You have to go out hard on every shift, that’s the only thing that matters really.”
From the moment the opening puck dropped, Sandwich dictated the pace and outshot the Green Wave, 42 to 17.
“I think this team buzzed right away and it’s due to the way we’ve been practicing. We came out flying and trying to avoid those slow starts,” Mohre said.
Junior goaltender Carson Schemenaur earned his first varsity win in net, stopping 15 of the 17 shots he faced.
“I think we have goalies who are pushing him. But he stepped up and had the best camp. He’s really one of the guys who has experience at that position and he came up with some good stops for us,” Mohre said.
Sandwich (1-0) continues its non-league schedule on the road against Nantucket on Wednesday, December 12, at 5:15 PM.