This is the first “normal” week we have had in the past two weeks — no holidays, no vacations, no early deadlines. What is normal, however, for this time of year is the number of games we have to report on.
The Berlin-Gorham girls hockey team won their game against Conval-Conant by a 5-0 score. I had the good fortune of attending that game and broadcasting it live on Phlumestream with good friend Butch Ladd.
The Conval-Conant Griffins have struggled early on and Berlin Coach Craig Bartoli showed a lot of coaching class by having a strategy that kept his team sharp and working on plays while keeping things in check, scoring-wise.
First period scoring came from Jill Hallee, an unassisted goal; Ava Petrie with assists from Alexia Bourassa and Tiah Turmel; and Cienna Langlais (Sidney Chapman and Haley Hamilton).
I’m not totally sure, but it is possible that those were the first points for Ava, Alexia, Tiah and Cienna as members of the Berlin-Gorham hockey team.
In period 2, Turmel again had a role in the scoring, this time with a nice goal of a perfect pass from Sophia Schoenbeck.
Grace Bradley, assisted by Chapman, scored in the final period to up the score to 5-0, that would hold up at the final horn.
The goaltending duties were shared by Natalie Williams and Kaelyn Blais, with Natalie making three saves (the only three of the game for the Griffins) and Blais facing none.
Abbie Friend kept her team in the game with a fine performance with 25 saves.
On Saturday, the Mountaineers tied Lebanon-Stevens-Kearsarge, 3-3, and then on Tuesday, they defeated Oyster River-Portsmouth, 7-0, to up their record to 4-1-2.
The Berlin High School boys’ hockey defeated Hollis Brookline-Derryfield, 5-4, in overtime, at the Notre Dame Arena, on Saturday.
The Mountaineers got an early 2-0 lead, with both goals coming off the stick of Trevor Breault assisted by Carter Poulin and Tyler Rousseau on the first one and then on a power play, abetted by Braden Riendeau.
Later, Hollis-Brookline tied it up before Berlin’s Ben Estrella put the hosts up 3-2 on an unassisted, power-play goal.
The visitors tied it up again, and eventually went ahead 4-3.
Late in the final period, Berlin pulled their goalie for an extra skater, and it proved a wise decision because, at 14:18 in period 3, Tyler Rousseau and Estrella set up Brayden Riendeau, who scored to tie things up at 4-4.
Then at 6:12 in overtime, Riendeau scored the winning goal, with the assist going to Trevor Breault.
Berlin outshot the visitors by a huge 40-15 margin, but again ran into an impetuous goalie, who kept his team in the running for a win.
That 40th shot on goal, however, was one he was unable to save, and it was the clincher.
Berlin goalie Anthony Pizzuto had 11 saves between the pipes for the winners.
Riendeau, Breault, Rousseau and Estrella all had multiple points in this big win.
Berlin Coach Mike Poulin spoke highly of the boys and the game, saying: “The boys showed great character coming back late and scoring with our goalie pulled. The team looked good on the power play scoring two power-play goals. We got good looks at their goalie and had traffic in front, but we just couldn’t find the back of the net enough. Overall good win and timely scoring especially from Brayden Riendeau who scored both the tying and game-winning goals.”
Poulin said, “There was a good crowd at the Notre Dame Arena Sat night, including lots of the Berlin High School student body. It was a great and encouraging crowd and atmosphere to play for and in.”
The Berlin High School girls basketball team bested Somersworth on Monday night with a 43-19 home win, a game that featured a relentless full-court press by the Mountaineers that resulted in numerous turnovers and fast break baskets, great ball movement and a full team effort.
Freshman Makenna Peare was on fire for Berlin, and during a stretch in the third period, her sister Kaylee had two points and Makenna followed up with six straight points, propelling the hosts to an 8-0 run, to lead the Hilltoppers by 13 points.
The younger Peare had a 17-point performance, followed by Makenna Balderrama, who attacked the basket and was a rebounding machine, and chipped in with 12 points.
Kaylee Peare had six points, and two each came from Madison Cordwell, Kelly McCormick, Rayna Bourbeau and Ashlin Lozeau.
Berlin played the following night with White Mountain Regional and lost, 42-41.
The Berlin High boys basketball team lost to and at White Mountain Regional, 59-27, after their exciting 43-41 overtime victory over Newfound last Friday.
Gorham High boys lost a barn-burner to always tough Colebrook, 56-48, and the girls were also defeated by a now 5-0 Colebrook team, 54-14.
North Country Hockey
Finally, in the North Country Hockey League games on Monday, The Town and Country defeated Amoskeag, 3-2 in a shootout.
Cody Martin and Jeff O’Neil scored in the shootout for the T&C, while Mark Bisson scored the lone Amoskeag shootout goal.
In regulation play, T&C’s O’Neil (from Greg Wedge), and Jeremy Eafrati (Jesse Deblois), scored with Adam Riendeau making 15 saves, while Amoskeag got goals from Bisson (Al Martin & Jamie Blais), and Ethan Dorval (Zack Perreault & Bisson), and goalie Scat Middleton had 11 saves.
In game 2, Mr. Pizza defeated the Pub, 6-4.
Goals for Mr. Pizza included: Shane Warren (Cam Cochran), two for Chris DeAngelis (Travis L’Heureux-assisted on both), Hat Trick — Cam Cochran (1. Sawyer Sanschagrin, 2. Warren & Spencer Devost, and 3. unassisted — empty net), saves by Goalie Zack Cascadden; three of the Pub goals came off the stick of Craig Villeneuve (1 and 2. Justin Jacques, 3. Travis Lamontagne and Justin Vien), and the fourth one was scored by Matt Soprano from Evan Bledsoe and Lamontagne — 12 saves by Johnny Parkhurst.