FALMOUTH — Early in the third period, Nathan Gervais scored to put Greely ahead 4-1 over Biddeford.
The Tigers’ Nick Lemieux said he felt his teammates watching him. As a senior on a team with 13 underclassmen, he did the only thing he could do.
“Just stay positive,” he said, “and keep pushing all the way to the end.”
Then Lemieux backed up his words, scoring his second goal of the game with 1:03 to play to lift Biddeford into a 4-4 tie with Greely in a schoolboy hockey game Monday night at Family Ice Center.
Ten seconds after goalie Tom Green (34 saves) scrambled to the bench for an extra skater, Lemieux collected a pass from Corey Brown, glided across the crease and slipped the puck past Greely’s Kyle Kramlich (39 saves) to send the game into an 8-minute overtime.
“This was a good sign of maturity,” Biddeford Coach Rich Reissfelder said. “The guys fell into a big hole on three defensive lapses but fought their way back into the game.”
Biddeford carried play in the first half of overtime, and Greely controlled much of the final four minutes.
Greely (4-5-3) came in on a three-game win streak and ranked third in Western Class B Heal points. Biddeford (5-5-2) had won two straight, including a 6-3 win at Lewiston Saturday night, which pushed them to fifth place in Western Class A Heals.
“We’re disappointed in the result, but no, it doesn’t feel like a loss,” Greely Coach Barry Mothes said. “Those first two periods, I thought we played some of our best hockey of the season. We had our chances in the third and in overtime but we just couldn’t finish them off.”
It’s not as though anyone would have blamed the Tigers for feeling low. Greely cashed in on three Biddeford mistakes for a 3-1 lead after two periods. Then Aidan Black and Nathan Gervais slipped past the Tigers’ defense to break in two-on-none on Green, who charged out to rush Black’s shot, which hit the right post and caromed out to Gervais, who lifted it into the net for a three-goal lead.
“The younger guys look to see how I react in situations like that,” Lemieux said. “I just had to stay positive and hope they’ll feed off that, and they did.”
Austen Rogers started Biddeford’s rally 50 seconds later with a wrist shot from the slot to make it 4-2. Devon Werthner buried a pass from Tyler Bellerose at 7:41 to make it a one-goal game and set up Lemieux’s dramatics.
Joe Saffian put Greely up 1-0 43 seconds into the game when his shot deflected off a defender and went into the net. Lemieux tied it at 1 on the power play, finishing off a nice pass from Brady Crepeau at 6:48. Dylan Freid put the Rangers ahead 2-1. Greely went 0 for 4 on the power play, but Pete Hurley’s short-handed goal in the second period made it 3-1.