ANDREW ENO (3) of the Brunswick Dragons turns to look at a shot just released by St. Dom’s Caleb Labrie. The Dragons dropped only their second game, 8-2 against the Saints at Sidney J. Watson Arena at Bowdoin College on Tuesday.

ANDREW ENO (3) of the Brunswick Dragons turns to look at a shot just released by St. Dom’s Caleb Labrie. The Dragons dropped only their second game, 8-2 against the Saints at Sidney J. Watson Arena at Bowdoin College on Tuesday.

BRUNSWICK

If you imagine a group of students sitting in a classroom and the teacher just told them that there is a test coming up, there’s a good chance the mentality of said students changed to a rather focused nature.

On Tuesday night the Brunswick High School boys hockey team experienced a test of its own, facing St. Dom’s in what became a lesson plan for the road ahead, as the Saints went on to capture an 8-2 Eastern A victory over the Dragons at Bowdoin College’s Sidney J. Watson Arena.

“They’re the fastest team, the most talented team we’ve faced this year,” Brunswick head coach Bill Bodwell said after the game. “They play at that level, their schedule is very difficult so they’re used to that level, it’s a really big adjustment for us.”

“I feel like they’re a fast team, they move the puck really well,” Dragons captain TJ Sullivan said. “I feel like we haven’t seen that a lot this season, so I think we just need to work harder, skate faster and just get up to the tempo of where they’re at. I think this is the first time we’ve seen it, you can only prepare so much in practice and it’s a different thing when you’re in the game.”

The Dragons entered the night sitting in the No. 3 slot of the Eastern Class A Heal Point Standings, while St. Dom’s occupied the spot right above at No. 2. What was presumed to be a tight match up quickly became just that as the two teams battled head-to-head in the first period and headed into the first intermission deadlocked at one goal each.

It was the Dragons that took the first lead of the game when Sullivan accepted a pass from Jacob McGowan on a 2-on-1 situation, lofting it into the top shelf of the net with the clock reading 7:23.

The Saints had an opportunity to tie it with 5:15 remaining in the period when a check into the boards jarred the puck loose, allowing for St. Dom’s to create a scoring opportunity, but starting goalie for the Dragons, CJ Conner, gathered it up in his gut to end the threat.

What appeared as though the Dragons might be taking a 1-0 lead into the second period soon changed when Saints forward Adam Poulin skated through a misplayed puck and sniped it past Conner into the right corner of the net with 43 seconds left.

“We were a little slow getting off the bus tonight,” St. Dom’s coach Steve Ouellette stated about his team’s firstperiod performance. “Our legs weren’t moving, guys weren’t getting to their spots, we were making things a little more complicated than we should be. Brunswick came out and they were playing hard as a younger team generally can and will do, so I got to give them credit for that.”

Saints second period surge

The story written in the first period quickly became a different one in the second when the Saints dumped five goals on top of the Dragons to take hold of a commanding lead.

With only 2:55 expired, St. Dom’s Caleb Labrie fed a pass to Austin Roy, who was able to skate around the Dragons defense and flick the puck into the back of the net for the 2-1 advantage.

From that point forward, the Saints controlled the game, with Ryan Lutrzykowski scoring two minutes later (Brad Berube assist), and Berube adding the Saints third goal of the period with 7:43 remaining (Bryan Bonenfant assist).

“This could have been one of those trap games and they took it in stride,” Ouellette said of his team’s overall performance. “We didn’t have a great first period, kind of tight, 1-1, but this year we’ve already been in a few overtime games, a few of those tough, tight games. We’re kind of used to that type of mentality on how you got to react to those things. I think that’s really kind of our difference right now.”

With 2:03 remaining in the second period and the Saints having added another goal off the stick of Lutrzykowski (Roy and Berube assisting), the Dragons were able to capitalize on a power-play opportunity just five seconds into penalty. McGowan ate up a pass in front of his own bench, with Sullivan and Nate Granholm credited for the setup, and slapped it past Saints goalie Alex Michaud to make it 5-2.

But, it took only six seconds for St. Dom’s to respond when Berube collected his second goal on the night off a pass from Roy, pushing the game into the third period with a 6-2 score.

Brunswick managed to fire 11 shots on net in the third frame, three more than the first two periods combined. However, the Saints added two more goals in the third, coming off the sticks of Roy (Dillon Pratt assist) and a power-play goal from Poulin (Mitch Lorenz and Sam Story assist).

“I told the team going into the third period, ‘We’re going to take this period and learn how to become a better hockey team,’” Bodwell stated. “I thought we did that. I had three freshmen playing on defense and it is a good opportunity for them to see a team at St. Dom’s level to help us become a better program. I think tonight’s going to serve us well.”

“St. Dom’s is definitely going to be one of the best team’s that we play,” Sullivan said. “But, there are going to be other good teams and we just need to work hard, skate fast and play well moving forward.”

The Dragons will have a day to recoup before traveling to Cheverus on Thursday to take on the Stags at 6 p.m.

St. Dom’s 8, Brunswick 2

At Sidney J. Watson Arena in Brunswick

St. Dom’s 1 5 2 8
Brunswick 1 1 0 2

First period — 1. (B) TJ Sullivan (Jacob McGowan), 7:37; 2. (SD) Adam Poulin, 14:17. Penalties — (B) TJ Sullivan, tripping, 5:10; (B) Jared Parent, tripping, 14:20. Second period — 3. (SD) Austin Roy (Caleb Labrie), 2:55; 4. (SD) Ryan Lutrzykowski (Brad Berube), 4:56; 5. (SD) Brad Berube (Bryan Bonenfant), 7:17; 6. (SD) Ryan Lutrzykowski (Austin Roy, Brad Berube), 11:19; 7. (B) Jacob McGowan (TJ Sullivan, Nate Granholm), pp, 12:57; 8. (SD) Brad Berube (Austin Roy), 13:03. Penalties — (B) Jared Parent, interference, 1:07; (SD) Chris Laverdiere, interference, 5:14; (SD) Caleb Labrie, contact to the head, 12:52. Third period — 9. (SD) Austin Roy (Dillon Pratt), 5:11; 10. Adam Poulin (Mitch Lorenz, Sam Story), pp, 12:17. Penalties — (B) TJ Sullivan, tripping, 7:42; (B) Jared Parent, interference, 11:15; (SD) Austin Roy, cross-checking, 12:34. Shots on goal — St. Dom’s 16-15- 11—42; Brunswick 5-3-11—19. Saves — (SD) Alex Michaud 17; (B) CJ Conner 24, Devin Allard 10. Power play — St. Dom’s 1-for-5; Brunswick 1-for-3. Up next for the Dragons — Thursday at Cheverus, 6 p.m.


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