In an early Friday afternoon game, the Cushing Varsity “B” Boys’ Hockey team welcomed Route 12 rival Winchendon School to Iorio Arena. The Wapitis of Winchendon had improved greatly since the two teams previous meeting and gave the Penguins all they could handle
The first period saw the Penguins outshooting the Wapitis at a nearly 2:1 ratio, but they were unable to find the back of the net. Winchendon put an early puck behind Cushing’s netminder Ben Speyer ’20 on a man-up situation and held onto the 1-0 lead for the first period. Despite the clear dominance in shots, the Penguins found themselves in the box multiple times in the first period and were forced to kill off penalties and not be able to get quality shots on net.
Coming out of the first intermission, the Penguins were committed to staying out of the box in the second period and they did so for the most part. In turn Cushing forced Winchendon into taking several penalties and the Penguins scored two power-play goals to pull in front 2-1. The first power-play goal came off the stick of Brendan Dougherty ’20 on a beautiful finish from a goalmouth feed off the tape of Seamus Cummings ’22 and Josh Beese ’19. A backdoor power-play goal by Shane McElhaney ’22 with assists from Chase Davis ’21 and Nick White ’19 pushed the Penguins ahead by one on the scoreboard.
The team came out of the locker room determined to dominate the third period and secure a solid win. A big goal early in the period by Frank Viacek ’20 from a feed by Luke Kowalka ’20 gave the Penguins a 3-1 lead. Once again the Penguins found themselves in penalty trouble with several penalties giving Winchendon both 5-on-4 and 5-on-3 advantages. The penalty kills units of White, McElhaney, and Viacek as well as Davis, Brian Lemay ’21, and Adam Canfield ’19 stood tall and killed off the Winchendon power-plays. An insurance goal by Lemay from the point with assists by Beese and Dougherty brought the Penguins lead up to 4-1, which they would hold onto for the final score.
The Penguins outshot the Wapiti 45-18 on the afternoon and showed dominance despite a slow start to the game. Speyer was once again solid between the pipes and made 17 saves on the day. The game puck went to forward Ryan Ebensberger ’20, who despite not recording a point in the game, moved up to the third line for the third period and hustled throughout. Ebensberger did an excellent job getting pucks deep, backchecking, and making smart decisions with the puck. The team came together by pulling in multiple individual efforts for the team win.
Next up for the Penguins is another home game tomorrow, Saturday, Feb. 16th at 4:30pm against Cardigan Mountain School.
39 School Street Ashburnham, Massachusetts 01430 978-827-7000 email@example.com
Cushing Academy exists for students and develops curious, creative, and confident learners and leaders. Founded in 1865, Cushing is a co-ed, college preparatory boarding and day school for students in grades 9-12 and PG. Our students, who come from over 30 states and 30 countries, excel in our outstanding academic, art, and athletic offerings. We welcome you to visit our community and beautiful 162-acre campus in Ashburnham, Mass., just one hour from Boston, to experience all that Cushing has to offer.