The Duxbury girls’ hockey team joined the ranks of DHS winter teams that were bounced from first round tournament action when they suffered a frustrating 1-0 loss to Waltham last Wednesday night on the road. The Duxbury girls’ hockey team joined the ranks of DHS winter teams that were bounced from first round tournament action when they suffered a frustrating 1-0 loss to Waltham last Wednesday night on the road.

A Waltham goal less than three minutes after the puck was dropped stood up the rest of the way, as the #6-seeded Hawks (16-3-2) eliminated #11-seed Duxbury.{sidebar id=4}

It wasn’t a highlight goal that gave the Hawks the win, but Allie Hickey’s tip of a Samantha Cormier shot redirected the puck past Julia Hannon’s left and dribbled over the goal line for what proved to be the game winner at the 12:12 mark of the opening period.

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THE ONE AND ONLY: Duxbury goaltender Julia Hannon looks back at the game’s only goal.

 

Once Waltham got ahead, they shifted their game plan to defense and backed in on goaltender Nikki Cormier all night long to smother several Duxbury scoring bids.{sidebar id=1}

“They wanted to win a one-goal game,” said Duxbury Coach Friend Weiler. “They weren’t pushing it. We had our chances with a couple of odd-man rushes and we hit a post. I would have liked to win the game, but I was happy with our effort.”

Both teams had brief power-play chances in the first period, with Waltham getting the better opportunity. But a defensive gem by Colleen Connolly on a break in by Dana Centofanti midway through the period kept it a one-goal game.

Duxbury would get its best chance later in the period when Jen Baran broke out on a 2-on-1, only to see her pass slide back over the blue line for an off-sides call.

The Lady Dragons looked like they were on the verge of tying the game early in the middle period when freshman forward Molly O’Sullivan went in on a break-away, but Cormier came up big to keep the score at 1-0.

Waltham countered with a break-in of their own two minutes later, but sophomore defenseman Taryn McCall got back to break up the scoring bid.

The game entered the third period with the next goal being crucial. Connolly got a great opportunity from the face-off circle to tie the game in the first minute of action, as the Lady Dragons put the pressure on Cormier, but couldn’t dent the junior netminder.

It became more and more frustrating for Duxbury, as each scoring bid was being stopped by a Waltham defense that plugged up the slot.

With 8:55 to go, O’Sullivan had another scoring bid, faking Cormier to the ice and watching as the goalie smothered her shot.

Momentum shifted to Waltham in the second half of the period, as Hannon stopped a breakaway, and made consecutive saves on her knees to keep Duxbury in the game.

With 1:13 to go, Duxbury Coach Friend Weiler called a timeout. When play resumed in the Duxbury end, Hickey and senior captain Katie Monaghan did a masterful job of tying up the puck behind the Duxbury net, killing off valuable seconds and making the chances for an overtime game a mute point.

“We got stronger as the game went on,” said Weiler. “It took awhile for them to get into it, and that speaks to how young this team is. It’s tough to lose the game on a little tipped misdirection, but we snapped out of it. I was proud of how they performed.”

The game also marked the end of the high school hockey careers for seniors Erin Powers, Erin Levesque, Colleen Connolly, and Catherine Byrne.{sidebar id=6}