2015-01-28 / Sports

Dragons ride top line to win

Cassidy, McKearney and Berry lead the way to 3-1 Brunswick victory
BY JACOB OUELLETTE Times Record Staff


COLLEEN MCKEARNEY (RIGHT) had a goal and two assists on Monday to help lead Brunswick over Portland/Deering, 3-1, in a girls high school hockey game in Portland. Here, she skates with the puck past Bulldogs center Lexi Michaud. 
JACOB OUELLETTE / THE TIMES RECORD COLLEEN MCKEARNEY (RIGHT) had a goal and two assists on Monday to help lead Brunswick over Portland/Deering, 3-1, in a girls high school hockey game in Portland. Here, she skates with the puck past Bulldogs center Lexi Michaud. JACOB OUELLETTE / THE TIMES RECORD PORTLAND

As the high school girls hockey season faces the final week of play, the Brunswick High School Dragons have found themselves in the hunt for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Heal Point Standings. So close to a point where they can taste it.

Before Monday’s contest against Portland/Deering, the Dragons sat at No. 7 with a record of 2-13, right behind rival Mt. Ararat (2-13-1), which occupies that final playoff spot and less than a point edge in the Tournament Index.

Brunswick, now 3-13, proved that it wants that final spot, walking away from the William B. Troubh Ice Arena in Portland with a 3-1 victory over the Bulldogs (1-13-1).

“We played three periods of hockey,” Dragons head coach AJ Kavanaugh said after the game. “Offensively, defensively and goaltending. We haven’t had a complete game where all three phases stepped up. We had that top line, we didn’t have a lot of shots on net, but they had the majority of them, they kept the pressure on while they were out there. I was just so pleased with the effort.”


BRUNSWICK HIGH SCHOOL’S Caitlyn Olson (left) looks up ice as Portland/Deering’s Callie Sturgeon pursues. The Dragons improved to 3-13 on the season with a 3-1 victory over the Bulldogs in Portland on Monday. 
JACOB OUELLETTE / THE TIMES RECORD BRUNSWICK HIGH SCHOOL’S Caitlyn Olson (left) looks up ice as Portland/Deering’s Callie Sturgeon pursues. The Dragons improved to 3-13 on the season with a 3-1 victory over the Bulldogs in Portland on Monday. JACOB OUELLETTE / THE TIMES RECORD “(This win) was pretty big because now we have a chance at playoffs,” freshman forward Colleen McKearney said. “Before we didn’t because we kept losing, but we’re doing better and we’re growing as a team.”

The first five minutes of the game featured strong defense by both sides, keeping the puck away from the net. However, with under nine minutes to play in the first period, Portland/Deering fired four shots on net, with each blocked by Dragons goalie Jordan Van Savage.

Brunswick countered swiftly as Madeline Berry slipped the puck to Tessa Cassidy, who rocketed a centering pass to McKearney, who took a hard one-timer in front of the crease for a 1- 0 advantage.

The Bulldogs answered four minutes later when Delaney Stokes ate up a rebound created by Lauren McIntyre and flipped it behind Van Savage to knot the game at one apiece.

Portland/Deering continued its attack in the second period when an initial blocked shot was taken around the net for an attempted wrap-around goal, but Van Savage was able to jam her left pad against the post to kill the threat and keep the score deadlocked at one.

With 5:36 remaining in the frame, Cassidy snuck up on a Bulldog defender who was in the process of taking a halted puck from her goalie, Anna Freund, and made an attempt to loft it into the back of the net, but was unable to gain complete control.

Brunswick’s first line gave the Dragons a huge momentum boost with only 19 seconds left in the period as Cassidy sent a centering pass to Berry to put the Dragons up by a goal heading into the final frame.

“Colleen had a goal and two assists, it was just a great effort by all three of them (top line),” Kavanaugh said. “Madeline Berry, who has been playing defense, not knowing what to do position wise, but she knows what to do around the net and she had a goal and assist.”

“It’s a new line so we’re working better together than before,” McKearney said. “We didn’t have as strong of chemistry between other people, but it’s only our second game together and it’s working pretty well.”

The Dragons put the dagger in the backs of the Bulldogs with 7:29 left in regulation when McKearney followed suit with the previous two goals and sent a centering pass to Cassidy while the Dragons possessed a 5-on-3 advantage, to which the junior forward fired it past Freund for the third and final goal of the night.

“It was huge and they knew it,” Kavanaugh stated of his team’s mentality of needing a win. “Our season hanged in the balance of ‘this could be the win that gets us into playoffs’ but it certainly could have been ‘the loss that ended our season’ and the girls knew that going in, they put the pressure on themselves and they got seniors they’re playing for and they played a complete game.”

The Dragons will continue to fight for the final playoff spot as the season continues. They will face talented Greely on Saturday (6:10 p.m.) to which will act as a “dress rehearsal” in Kavanaugh’s eyes, as Brunswick has the potential to face the Rangers in the postseason if the black and orange are able to finish the season on a high note.

Brunswick 3, Portland/Deering 1

At William B. Troubh Ice Arena in

Brunswick 1113
Portland/Deering— 1001

First period — 1. (B) Colleen McKearney (Tessa Cassidy, Madeline Berry), 6:31; 2. (P/D) Delaney Stokes (Lauren McIntyre), 12:18. Penalties — None. Second period — 2. (B) Madeline Berry (Tessa Cassidy, Colleen McKearney), 14:41. Penalties — (B) Bench (served by Madeline Berry), too many players on ice, 1:29; (B) Colleen McKearney, body checking, 2:25; (P/D) Lauren McIntyre, unsportsmanlike conduct, 2:25; (P/D) Kaylin Madore, hooking, 4:27. Third period — 4. (B) Tessa Cassidy (Colleen McKearney), 7:31. Penalties — (P/D) Mia Thurston, tripping, 2:06; (B) Adele Wise, too many players on ice, 3:09, (P/D) Ella Coose, interference, 5:26; (P/D) Lauren McIntyre, tripping, 6:31; (P/D) Lauren McIntyre, body checking, 11:23; (B) Colleen McKearney, hooking, 11:23; (P/D) Callie Sturgeon, hooking, 12:58. Power play — Brunswick 1-for-5; Portland/Deering 0-for-2. Shots — Brunswick 14; Portland/Deering 28. Saves — (B) Jordan Van Savage 27; (P/D) Anna Freund 11. Records — Brunswick 3-13; Portland/ Deering 1-13-1. Up next for the Dragons – Saturday at Greely, 6:10 p.m.

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