Young Green Knights roll to fourth straight victory
WEST HAVEN — Immediately following a 3-0 season-opening loss to New Canaan, the Notre Dame-West Haven hockey team vowed it would go undefeated for the remainder of December.
That promise became a reality last Thursday night when the Green Knights defeated Darien, 3-0, at the Edward L. Bennett Rink and concluded the 2010 portion of the season with a 4-1 record.
It was the second shutout for in five starts for sophomore goalie Greg Harney, who stopped 14 shots.
“When they (Darien) put the most pressure on, he (Harney) made his best saves,” Notre Dame coach Bill Gerosa said.
Harney made six saves, several at close range, in the third period and corralled four each in the first two periods.
As a team, Notre Dame has allowed only five goals, with three of them coming in that loss to New Canaan.
“Notre Dame moved the puck tonight a lot better than we did,” Darien coach Larry Vieira said. “They have skilled players and now they believe. There’s a reason why they’re 4-1 at this point in the season.”
The Green Knights got started at the 7 minute, 5-second mark of the first period when junior forward Colby Cretella redirected R.J. Bishop’s shot from the point past Blue Wave goalie Max Rothston, who had a busy night in making 24 saves with 10 of them coming in the first 15 minutes.
Darien (1-4) was unable to capitalize on a one-man advantage early in the second period when Darren Capobianco drew a cross-checking penalty at 1:16.
Shortly after a four-shot flurry in the third in which Harney stopped every Blue Wave attempt, Cretella scored his second goal of the game and sixth of the season by batting in a rebound off a Matt Merola shot. Bishop also earned an assist on the play.
The power-play goal came at 11:42 and Joe Travaglino’s empty-netter with 18 seconds left created the final margin.
“Notre Dame had a better sense of urgency tonight,” Vieira said. “You have to give them all of the credit. But, I honestly thought that we didn’t give a full effort in this one.”
Notre Dame, which steps into a big week with games against Fairfield Prep and West Haven this week, has the start it wanted.
“We don’t have any snipers, or any hot shots,” Gerosa said. “We simply work well together as a team. We achieved what we have so far through hard work.
“Half of this team is made up of freshmen and sophomores. We’re having fun, they’re listening, and they’re playing their hearts out.”