Usually when I write the recaps of the game I try to do “traditional journalism” for the first half and my thoughts for the second but I was unable to take notes due to the I-Phone’s poor battery life. So I’m merging the article and the blog.
I’m gonna state the obvious; it was a heartbreaker. But it was a game with plenty worth sharing with the Dog Pound faithful.
The game itself had to have been one of the best high school hockey games I’ve seen. Plymouth South came out of the gates flying and by the time I got my ticket ripped it was a 2-0 deficit for the Dogs. And just minutes later South got another to extend the lead to 3-0. The Dogs did settle in but a three goal deficit after one was not exactly ideal.
But in the second period it was as if a whole new team took the ice for the Canton boys. They dominated play outshooting the Panthers 16-1 in the frame. The newfound energy enabled the Dogs to break through with goals from Chris Lavoie and Johnny “Hockey” Hagan. The deficit shrunk to 1.
There were thunderous chants of “Ratt-led!…Ratt-led!…Ratt-led!” pouring down from the stoody (loudest chant these two ears have heard) and it appeared as though everything was coming up Bulldogs.
I tweeted that the third period was going to take 5 years off my life and I was wrong.
It took ten.
Both teams came out ready to battle for their playoff lives and the intensity in the rink was palpable. The Dogs had several chances to tie the game leaving everyone convinced they would find the equalizer.
But with every minute that passed, more and more hands started being clasped together and placed on top of lips. (Even I went through the Rosary 3 times just to try and get an open look in the slot)
And with just under two minutes to go the prayers were answered after the puck found its way onto Hagan’s stick again who buried his second of the night to tie the game up for the first time since virtually the puck had been dropped.
The stoody erupted like I’ve never seen before. Pure euphoria and joy was the only way to describe it. I only made it through one round of “Sieve!” I was so out of breath! (And I love chanting “Sieve!”)
But tragically the excitement was short lived as after the ensuing face-off Plymouth South was able to respond with a goal of their own to make it 4-3 just 14 seconds later and despite battling to the bitter end, a PS empty netter sealed the defeat of the Dogs.
It was an ending full of emotions for me. Not only did I have many friends on the team who I wanted nothing more than to see in the Garden but I had a sinking realization that this was also the last time I’d watch a boys puck game from the stoody. Needless to say “Hurt” by Johnny Cash was the first song on for the long car-ride home.
But after taking some time to reflect I was more proud of the team than I was sad about the loss. There aren’t too many teams that would continue to fight after being down three goals in the first; let alone come back to tie it with a real chance to win.
Keep your heads up boys because it was an amazing run with moments I won’t soon forget and for that I say;
Thanks for the memories.