Lancer Icemen Rebound From Humbling Loss With Wins

Any team that is dealt an overwhelming defeat early in its season will have reasons to take a step back, reassess, and make adjustments, for the next time out.

And that’s what the Londonderry High School hockey team did after getting pummeled Monday night, Jan. 2 in tallying victories over Manchester opponents from Central High and Trinity later in the week.

The now 5-1 Lancers rebounded extremely well from their humbling 8-0 loss to Bedford on the second day of the new year with a 4-0 blanking of the host Manchester Central Little Green at the JFK Coliseum in the Queen City on Wednesday the fourth.

Londonderry put forth a dominant performance throughout the contest, enjoying a 43-13 total advantage in shots on net and leading from the middle of the first period onward. Sophomore forward Patrick Murphy had three of the four LHS goals.

Speaking of alterations his team made during its one practice session between the Bedford and Central games, Lancer coach Peter Bedford stated, “We made changes. We changed our fore-checking scheme, our defensive scheme, and we even changed our lines. And the kids showed today that they were comfortable with the changes.”

Londonderry controlled play from the opening face-off, enjoying a 5-1 advantage where shots on net were concerned in the opening five minutes and snagging a 1-0 lead with 7:41 left in the opening period when Murphy was set up for his first goal by Dom Federico. The goal-scorer zipped a wrist shot from the top of the right face-off circle in the Central zone past Green goalie Keenan Alnahas, who would keep his crew in the game nearly single-handedly by making some 39 saves before the game’s final buzzer blared.

The locals finished with an 18-3 advantage in shots on net but just got that one blast past Alnahas in the first 15 minutes of action.

Londonderry drove 15 more shots on the Central net during the middle stanza and got three of them past Alnahas in snagging a commanding 4-0 advantage.

Murphy was set up for the first of them by Anthony Federico five minutes into the second, and he bagged his hat-trick a little less than five minutes later when he tallied a power-play goal with Dom Federico and Merrill Neiman garnering the assists.

Londonderry ended the game’s scoring with 3:16 left when Troy Muldoon was set up by Patrick McKinnon, going up by the apparently insurmountable margin of four goals.

Cody Baldwin turned aside all 13 Central shots in contributing to the shutout.

Speaking of hat-trick-bagger Murphy, Bedford said, “He’s definitely one of our more skilled players. He’s a sophomore, and I think he’s starting to figure it out.”

And the Lancers continued to show they’d figured out with a 3-1 besting of the Trinity Pioneers’ crew for whom Bedford served as an assistant last winter.

Bryan Murphy was set up by McKinnon for the lone goal of the first stanza, and Neiman made it a 2-0 game after being set up by Jacob Parilla and Patrick Murphy on the only goal of the middle period.

Trinity cut its deficit in half early in the third stanza before the Lancers ended the scoring on a power-play tally by Dom Federico with 9:23 to go. Troy Muldoon had the helper.

“Trinity is a better team than their record shows, and they probably played their best game of the season. But we did a good job of limiting their chances,” said Bedford.

LHS freshman goalie Cam Donovan made 18 saves his contribution to the Lancer success.

The locals return to action on Friday afternoon with a home game against Pinkerton Academy.

Londonderry High hockey player Anthony Federico battles a Central rival along the boards during the recent LHS win. Photo by Chris Pantazis

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