LEWISTON — This time, York High came back.

This time, overtime proved a time for celebration.

Anthony Figlioli scored an improbable goal from behind the net after 43 seconds of overtime Saturday to give York the Class B boys’ hockey state championship with a 4-3 win over previously unbeaten Brewer at the Colisee.

Figlioli also assisted Craig Decato to make it 3-3 on a two-on-one break at 11:28 of the third period.

Figlioli and Decato each scored twice for the Wildcats (16-5). Alex Ahrikenchikh made 32 saves, 16 in the third period.

Kyle Alexander, Joe Fowler and Evan Nadeau scored for Brewer (19-1-1). Adam Cossette made 23 saves.

This was York’s third trip to the state final in the past four years. In 2008, Winslow beat York 4-3 in overtime. In 2010, Brewer beat the Wildcats, 3-1.

“I don’t know about revenge, but the victory sure was sweet,” York Coach Michael Vessey said.

Several minutes earlier, Vessey was considering his end-of-game strategy and when he would pull his goalie.

Evan Nadeau of Brewer scored on a breakaway, shooting over Ahrikenchikh’s blocker at 8:55 for a 3-2 lead.

We were getting a little bit nervous,” Vessey said. “But with Craig and Anthony out on the ice “

They took off on a break, Figlioli on the left with the puck.

“They left me open. He passed it over and I shot five-hole,” Decato said of his tying score.

Brewer Coach David Shedd sighed. A Figlioli-Decato rush was what he wanted to avoid.

“Once we got the lead, I told them to keep it simple,” Shedd said, “but we didn’t keep it simple enough.”

Ahrikenchikh skated to the bench to join the celebration.

“They picked me up went I was down,” he said.

It was Ahrikenchikh who kept the Wildcats in contention. Brewer outshot York 17-5 in the third period, but Ahrikenchikh held on, including a stop on another Nadeau breakaway.

“I faked shot, then went blocker side again, but he deflected it,” Nadeau said. “He had a great game.”

Ahrikenchikh grinned about the play: “I guessed where he was going.”

In overtime, York dumped the puck into Brewer’s zone. In the scramble for the puck behind the net, Figlioli angled a shot at Cossette. It bounced off the goalie’s stick and slid through his legs.

“I had no idea what happened,” Figlioli said. “It was overtime. All you want to do is get the puck on net and that’s what we did, and it went in.”

Brewer outshot York 35-27 and created several other chances with its speedy forwards. But defensemen Conor O’Brien, Wesley Warner, Michael Valeri and Alex Jannetti were making stops before the puck reached the goal.

The Wildcats got the first power play and pounced. Figlioli drilled in a rebound at 13:38.

The cheers from the York side had not quieted when Brewer’s transition game took off again. Alexander played a two-on-one perfectly, holding onto the puck until the very end and scoring the tying goal on a wrist shot at 14:26.

York got momentum right back in the second period by showing a little of its own transition.

Valeri passed up the boards to Decato, who touched it to Figlioli flying up the ice.

Figlioli’s shot was blocked, but York, helped by a hustling Shane Hughes, kept possession. Decato eventually swatted the puck into the net from a scrum outside the crease for a 2-1 lead at 1:36.

Brewer responded when one of its speedsters, Joe Fowler, faked a defenseman in the slot, bolted to his left and shot inside the post at 10:56.

Then came the wild third period. Then overtime.

“A great game,” Brewer’s Shedd said. “If the two teams played again, it could be the same.” 

Staff Writer Kevin Thomas can be reached at 791-6411 or: [email protected]