Published in the January 28, 2016 edition
By STEPHEN MARTELLUCCI
NORTH READING — On Monday night, the North Reading High boys hockey team was nipped, 4–3, by host North Andover at the Valley Forum in Haverhill. With that non–league defeat, the Hornets record fell to 8–2–2 overall as they suffered their second straight loss.
Nico Pastore gave the Hornets a 1–0 lead midway through the first period assisted by John Merullo and Kevin Murphy. The Scarlet Knights then tied it up with 2:30 left in the first.
Jared Valade made it 2–1 on the power play with 20 seconds left in the first period to regain the lead. Mike Driscoll and Tyler Calos assisted.
After a scoreless second period, the Knights tied it up in the first minute of the third. They then took their first lead of the night with 5:45 left in the game. North Andover then went up by two with two minutes left scoring on a, 2–on–1 break as they scored their third straight goal.
Valade scored a minute later, with the extra attacker, but the Knights were able to hold on.
“We came out strong,” said Hornets head coach John Giuliotti. “But they were able to chip away at us in that third period.”
The Hornets outshot the Knights on goal, 28–18, as goalie Nick Ponte (7–2–2) made 14 saves.
Edged by Chieftains
Last Saturday night, the Hornets lost their first Cape Ann League game of the season as they were edged, 2–1, by visiting Masconomet at Merrimack College. With that loss, the Hornets record dipped to 6–1–1 in the CAL.
The Chieftains scored with 3:30 left in the first period for the period’s lone tally.
After another scoreless second, the visitors scored two minutes into the third to go up 2–0 as Mitch Forbes scored his second goal of the night. Mike Driscoll then scored on a tipped shot by Valade to cut the lead to one with 9:30 left but the Hornets couldn’t get the game-tying tally.
“Masco is always a tough team and they came ready to play,” said Giuliotti. “We couldn’t get any scoring going.”
The Chieftains outshot the Hornets, 18–16, on goal as Ponte made 16 stops.
On Jan. 20, the Hornets defeated Amesbury, 3–1, at Merrimack College to complete the season sweep over the Indians.
After a scoreless first period, the Indians scored with 5:30 left in the second to head to the third leading 1–0.
With 12:30 left in the game, Pat Driscoll tied it with the assist going to Calos. Calos then made it 2–1 with 1:30 left on a rebound. Pat Driscoll and Murphy assisted. Calos then scored on the empty net in the final minute to close the door.
John Day made his debut in goal for North Reading and made 13 saves as the Hornets outshot the Indians on net 29–14.
“We beat them pretty handily the first time we played against them and our guys were looking beyond then,” admitted Giuliotti. “They gave us a good run and their goalie played well for them.”
This Saturday night, the Hornets welcome Triton to Merrimack with that game starting at 6 pm. On Feb. 3, North Reading visits Newburyport at the Graf Rink. Face–off for that game is at 7 p.m.