Yarmouth picked up important points in the hunt for a playoff spot with a 3-2 win over the second-place Gardiner Tigers. The Clippers are on a week-long hiatus before they host Gorham next Saturday at 7:10 pm in another important divisional match-up.
The first period was evenly-matched as both teams struggled to establish puck possession. Goaltender Charles Henry Watson ’22 continued his strong play in net and made a number of key saves to keep the score even. Watson’s outstanding play has been so consistent this season that it has become common-place.
Just over a minute into the second period, Captain Kurt Heywood ’19 buried a shot to give Yarmouth the lead, but the scoring opportunity really started with patient play by Matt Robichaud ’22 at the point. Rather than taking a low-percentage shot, Robichaud paused to allow a passing lane open up to Matt Sanborn in the slot. Although Robichaud’s pass slid off Sanborn’s stick, Heywood was able to collect the loose puck close to the net to finish the scoring opportunity.
The Clippers started to dominate play in the second period, but a defensive miscommunication and a slew of penalties led to back-to-back Gardiner goals over a span of less than one minute. Despite outplaying Gardiner in the second stanza, the Clipper ended the period trailing 2-1.
In the third period, Yarmouth battled back and again gained the territorial edge. At 10:57 of the third period, Captain Sam Marjerison ’19 scored an unassisted goal on a shot that eluded the Gardiner netminder to tie the game.
The Clippers continued to battle and began to get pucks and bodies to the net. The key to Yarmouth’s offense has been concentrating on simple, fundamental hockey plays rather than taking low-percentage outside shots that too often hit the glass rather than the net. With 5:20 remaining in the game, it was a simple, hard-working play that was the difference. Sam Marjerison carried the puck deep into the zone against defensive pressure. Kurt Heywood picked up the loose puck and fed a pass to Will Giese ’20 who went hard to the net and put away the game-winner.
The Clippers kept the game interesting in the final minute as they struggled to get the puck out of their zone. However, as he has done all season, Watson stepped out and made some key saves to preserve the victory.