Three Ties Culminate with OT Win

From behind the Dexter Southfield net, Rob Devaney ’14 passed the puck to Tommy Bishop ’14, who then snapped a shot and beat the Dexter goalie’s glove to secure a long-awaited overtime win for Andover Boys Hockey.

Andover goes into its final seven games of the season with a 10-5-3 record.

Coming out flat against Dexter on Saturday, Andover quickly fell behind 1-3 in the first period because of various mistakes.

Andover refused to give up, though, and regained its composure and took control of the game for the next two periods. With minutes left in the game, Assistant Captain Michael Kim ’14 took a slapshot from the point, creating a scramble in front of the net, and, with 14 seconds on the clock, Devaney found the loose puck and tucked it in the net, tying the score.

“We came back with two strong periods and were able to tie the game. I thought we had good execution with our goalie pulled,” wrote Head Coach Dean Boylan in an email to The Phillipian.

“Being able to fight back and steal the game was the best,” said Bishop, who buried the puck in the back of the net to seal the overtime victory for Andover.

Prior to Saturday’s win against Dexter, Andover had tied three games in a row.

One tie was against Belmont Hill last Friday. Andover’s lone goal in the game came early in the third period when Kim drove past a Belmont Hill defender and fed Assistant Captain Michael Lata ’14 a shot into the open net.

Belmont Hill tied the game up on a powerplay goal late in the third period, and although Andover outshot Belmont Hill 6-1 in overtime, the game ended in Andover’s third consecutive tie.

“I thought we played a very solid game against Belmont Hill Friday. We had our chances, but just couldn’t quite finish,” said Boylan.

“Even though we gave up a lead against Belmont Hill, it wasn’t in the same way [as the previous games],” said Peter Bensen ’14.

In its two previous ties, Andover suffered letdowns late in the third period, giving up two and three goal leads to Loomis Chaffee and Deerfield respectively.

With so many close games ending in unfavorable outcomes for Andover, the team struggled to remain patient and focused, especially because many slow starts and relaxing on the ice had costed the team a few games.

“We needed to come out in the first period a little bit more fired up to play. There is an extra gear that we can play at, but we don’t always play to that level,” said Bensen.

Andover’s elusive win at home on Saturday improved its impressive home record. The team has only lost one game and tied one game at home this season.

“Dexter is a top-eight team, and we played right with them except for the beginning of the game when we had a little breakdown,” said Payton Jancsy ’16. “We were down and we fought to the end. If teams come back against us, why couldn’t we do it to them?”

With playoffs drawing closer each week, Andover’s position to make the Elite Eight tournament is in contention.

“Honestly, we have been playing well. We can’t get discouraged, and the goals are going to come if we keep playing tough,” said Bensen.

Andover travelled up to Kimball Union Academy, ranked at 11, in its rescheduled game on Thursday and will face off against Governor’s on Friday at home.