Tuesday, March 11, 2014
By Gary Hawkins
HALLOWELL — A Cony/Monmouth Academy hockey team that’s been in a slump turned in one of its better efforts Saturday night at the Bank of Maine Ice Vault.
Austin Davis scored two goals, and Drew Keithley and Aaron Manter added one apiece to lead the Rams to a 4-2 victory against Winslow.
Alex Berard and Keegan Cain scored for the Black Raiders.
Cony (7-5) had lost three of its last four and slipped to sixth in the Eastern Class A Heal point standings. Included were poor efforts against St. Dominic and Waterville.
But things changed against Winslow (6-5), which last week beat Waterville in a matchup of Eastern Class B rivals.
‘We worked hard all week in practice, and we definitely knew we had to come out and play,” Davis said. “We kept moving our feet, which was key, and we played through the physicality.”
The Rams took control in the first period. Keithley scored when he redirected a tough angle shot from the left side past Winslow goalie Andrew Beals (18 saves).
Both teams picked up the physical pace midway through the period. Cony goalie Tommy Small (21 saves) kept Winslow scoreless with a couple nice saves, and Davis added to the lead with 56 seconds left in the period, taking a pass from Spencer Buck behind his blue line and skating end to end. His shot bounced off Beals and trickled over the goal line to make it 2-0.
“We played a lot better as a team tonight,” Cony Coach Chad Foye said. “I thought we skated and hustled a little more. We’ve just got to develop some consistency off this and keep going.”
The Black Raiders had some good chances early in the second period and finally scored on a nifty play by Berard, who knocked a crossing pass from Jacob Houghton out of the air with his stick and flipped a shot past Small. But 20 seconds later, Manter went end to end, stickhandling through traffic and wristing a shot to the top left corner of the net to restore Cony’s two-goal lead.
“That was a nice answer to that goal,” Foye said. “It’s kind of what you look for.”
Winslow picked up the pace in Cony’s end and generated some good opportunities in the third period. Small made a couple tough saves, and a few more shots hit the post or went just wide.
“Most teams turn it on when they’re behind and play harder,” Winslow Coach Andy Dube said. “It was a game where we had to show up immediately and play hard the first five minutes. Cony came out with a lot of fire.”
Davis gave the Rams a three-goal lead with 6:41 left.
Keegan Caine made it 4-2 when he wristed a shot from the slot into the goal with 2:44 left.