Slow start, down 2-0; Strong finish, 7-3 win
The Flames quickly found themselves behind 2-0 just 7 minutes into the game. This may have been the result of back-to-back early morning (8am scrimmage yesterday) games, or maybe the team’s attendance at MRYHA Night at the Verizon Wireless Arena last night. Either way, the Stars led 2-0 early, and were carrying the play. As the period wore on, the Flames started heating up and the scoring chances opened up. First, on a clean face off win, Patrick Goren fed Sean Moore in the slot and he one-timed a shot just inside of the far post to get the Flames on the board. A few minutes later, Brendan Courtney pushed a nice pass from his defensive position up to Sam Hebert who skated up the left-wing, cut back to the net and scored a nifty goal to tie the game at 2-2. The period ended with a 2-2 score and the Flames earning a slim 7-6 edge in shots on goal.
The second period started with the Flames and Sam Hebert getting a goal in the opening 22 seconds to take a 3-2 lead. Over the next several minutes the tide turned and the NE Stars starting winning loose pucks, keeping the puck in the offensive end, and getting people in front of the net. This led to the Stars’ scoring the tying goal, and then going on successive power plays. Finally, after killing three straight minutes of penalties, the Flames started engulfing the offensive end of the ice with waves of scoring chances. Just as a Flame penalty expired, Sam Hebert struck again with an even-strength goal. It was his 3rd of the game, and the eventual game winner. Shortly thereafter, Hebert scored again on an easy put-back goal after great passing and offensive presence from Ryan Douthart and Brendan Courtney. The period ended with the Flames in front 5-3 and the momentum squarely with the visiting team.
The 3rd period saw the Flames really open up their passing game, which led to 10 shots on goal and 2 more goals. Ryan Douthart figured in both goals during the period, as did Wil and Sam Hebert. Not on the score sheet, but certainly present with strong skating, hustle, back checking, and positioning was Kyle O’Flaherty. The first goal of the period was scored by Sam Hebert, but was really created by Douthart and Wil Hebert. The final goal was scored when Douthart was rewarded for a strong game and a real nice hockey play, assisted by Wil and Sam Hebert. Keenan Alnahas and Anders Lindberg combined to make 17 saves on 20 shots they faced, with Alnahas earning the win in net.
The Flames return to action this afternoon when they host the Concord Capitals at 12:50pm in the West Side Arena. Thank again for bearing with us through these last few months. Please enjoy the rest of the season and find fun in everything you do.