The following was submitted by the Nashoba Grizzlies. To submit your own content, e-mail [email protected]
This past weekend the Nashoba Grizzlies Squirt AA team went to Springfield to compete for the State Championship. 12 teams fought to earn the title of Massachusetts State Champion. The first game, Friday evening the Grizzlies faced Barnstable. It was a hard fought game with the Grizzlies entering the 3rd period ahead 1-0 on a goal by Ben Svoboda. Barnstable answered with 3, the Grizzlies would add 2 by Own Crann ending regulation tied 3-3. This started the 5-minute sudden death overtime. Goalie Luke Buretta had an incredible weekend, keeping this game tied at the end of OT. On to the 5 man shootout started by Crann, big save by Barnstable’s goalie. Barnstable would net one going ahead by one in the shootout. Next was Svoboda, who came up big and made it even. Barnstable would be denied again by Buretta. it was still tied, next was a sudden death shootout. Barnstable sent their skater and once again he was denied by Buretta. The Grizzlies sent defenseman Porter Gallant who flew up the ice and sunk a sweet goal for the win. What an incredible start this tournament.
Up next on Saturday morning was Waltham, the Grizzlies left much of what they had on Friday night on the ice as they skated to a 6-1 loss with Crann scoring the sole goal. On to Saturday night, to face the #1 seed, Plymouth. Plymouth took an early lead and scored: 48 seconds into the first period, things were looking down as Plymouth took a 2-0 lead now 6 minutes into the first. The Grizzlies would not lay down. Defensively Riley Molongski and Zoe Musante pushed the Plymouth forward away from the net, denying them shots on Buretta. Gallant and Jarod Dantas held the points and kept play in the Plymouth zone. With 3.5 minutes left, Crann scored ending the first behind by 1. The second period saw plenty of chances for both teams, nice shots by Tyler Olsen, Svoboda, Michael Blake and Charlie Bonenfant. Some awesome back checking and passing from Shahoj Makkapati, Ladquidara and Fitzgerald. Crann would score again in the second with 3 minutes left tying the game 2-2. The third period saw much of the same, fighting back and forth again ending the game in a tie. On to overtime. The teams battled back and forth for 4:20 minutes. Nashoba was called for a tripping penalty placing Plymouth on a power play, this was the edge they needed and slipped a goal in with 30 seconds left to play in OT. It was a hard loss but an impressive come back for the Grizzlies. Most importantly, many of the coaches and parents from both Barnstable and Plymouth approached Grizzlies parents and coaches to compliment them on the class and character of the Grizzlies for their hard work, determination and style of play. Nashoba’s Pee Wee AAA team and Squirt AAA team will be also playing in the State Tournament this coming weekend.