GLOUCESTER— It looked like the Rockport hockey team was well on its way to a win Saturday night against Pentucket at the Talbot Rink.
The Vikings were the superior team over the first 15 minutes dominating play in the first period and taking a 2-0 lead into the break. Then it all came unglued.
Pentucket outscored Rockport 5-2 over the final 30 minutes and came away with a 5-4 win. In the final 30 minutes Rockport (1-2) resorted to some old bad habits with undisciplined play leading to several penalties. The Vikings were hit with eight penalties over the final two periods, and a power play goal from Pentucket late in the third period essentially clinched a Sachems win.
“It’s disappointing,” Rockport head coach Derek Papalegis said. “We got off to a strong start and we couldn’t keep it going. It’s especially disappointing because we made a lot of mental mistakes. Undisciplined play threw us off, just too many selfish penalties.”
Sachems (2-2-1) head coach Bill Burns was quick to credit his players improved play over the final two frames.
“We started slow but in the last two periods we really started forechecking better,” Burns said. “We made them make mistakes in their own end by playing aggressive and our defense did a good job keeping them away from the front of our goal in the last two periods.”
Pentucket’s play over the final two periods was powered by its top line of Ian Mitchell, Tom Pingree and John Orlando. The trio scored all five goals for the Sachems with each player scoring three points.
Mitchell had a hat trick, Orlando had two goals and an assist and Pingree had three helpers.
“We weren’t physical enough with them,” Papalegis said about the Sachems top line. “We let them skate through us time after time. They’re a talented line and they started picking corners on us.”