GLOUCESTER – Each bench at Gloucester’s Talbot Rink is decorated the same way.
Behind each bench, a large vertical Gloucester hockey sign hangs. Flanking each bench, a similar, horizontal Rockport sign.
Naturally, with each team sharing the same home rink, a rivalry has built up between the two programs.
Neither team has had much in the way of bragging rights, though, as the two teams hadn’t met since 1991. Until last night.
And after a heated 45 minutes, Gloucester skated away with clear ownership of “The Tank” with a resounding 7-3 win over the Vikings.
“I’ve been trying to get a game with these guys for a while and we were lucky enough to get it this year,” Rockport coach Derek Papalegis said. “These guys have all played together. Guys had been talking it up on Facebook and we’ve had it circled for a while, and unfortunately, we didn’t show up to play.”
It didn’t take long for Gloucester to establish itself as the top dog last night. The Fishermen held a clear size advantage over Rockport, and coupled their grittiness with a speedy cycle in the offensive zone.
By the time Alex Webb got the Fishermen on the board 2:29 into the first period, there was a feeling that the floodgates were just waiting to be opened.
They finally did in the second period. With Gloucester up 2-0 after Pete Mondello picked a corner late in the first, the Fishermen upped their intensity in the second.
Third-liner Jerry Ciaramitaro banged home a rebound in a scrum out front just 1:40 into the second period to extend the lead to three.
Midway through the period, Casey Noyes converted a Matt Lane feed to make it 4-0. Thirty five seconds later, a Jared Favazza power play blast from the top of the circles made it 5-0. Not long after, Mondello added his second -- this one on the power play -- to make it 6-0.