The Vineyard varsity boys hockey team faced a stiff early season test in the form of deep, talented Division 1 Bridgewater-Raynham, Saturday night at the M.V. Arena. The Vineyarders were up to the challenge but fell on a Justus Daniels power-play goal with 57 seconds remaining as the Trojans skated away with a 4-3 win.
For the second game in a row, the Vineyarders got better as the game progressed, outshooting the Trojans, 14-5, in the third period and rallying from a 3-1 deficit. First, Tyson Aruajo took a long feed from Nick Vukota and, while falling flat to the ice, managed to slide the puck, then himself into the yawning cage to make it 3-2 at 3:57 of the final period. Sam Burke had the other assist on the play. Two minutes later, Emerson Mahoney tied the game with the assist to Araujo from the face-off.
“I was happy with the effort, especially in the third period” coach Matt Mincone said after the game. “That’s two third periods in a row. They’ve got to get a whole 45 minutes together.”
The Trojans scored first on the night and led 1-0 after the first period. Andrew Wiley tied the game at 5:24 of the second, from Andrew Carroll on the power-play. The Trojans regained the lead at 7:45 and scored a potentially deflating goal with two seconds left in the period.
The Vineyarders showed heart in the ensuing comeback but had a bitter pill to swallow, drawing a holding penalty with 2:07 left in such a tight, well-played, gritty game. “They weren’t undisciplined penalties,” coach Mincone said of his team’s six infractions on the night. “Late in the third period, they seemed better conditioned than we were, so we were making those little mistakes to slow things down and that’s what you get when you play a bigger division 1 team. They have a little more depth than we do. I challenged them in the game and they answered the call: in the third period we did everything we could.”
The Vineyarders (1-1) are back on the ice December 28-30 for a tournament at the University of New Hampshire.