FOXBORO — The North Attleboro High and King Philip Regional High hockey teams went toe to toe on the ice at Foxboro Sports Center Wednesday night, finally settling for a 3-3 Hockomock League tie.
After the Rocketeers claimed a 2-0 lead after the first period despite being outshot in the period, King Philip took advantage of penalty opportunities, scoring three goals in less than four minutes to claim a 3-2 advantage of their own.
“Our power play looked pretty good and that’s something we’ve been practicing,” King Philip coach Paul Carlow said. “We were moving the puck and got good looks. I think we may have have been a little too cautious in the third (period), but it was a good, hard-fought game.”
North Attleboro captain Dennis Morehouse tied the game for good with his goal with 2:57 remaining in the second period, beating King Philip goalie Jesper Makudera top shelf.
“I thought we came out in the second and got some bad breaks, but that’s just the game of hockey and to come out and get the tying goal back is exactly what we want to keep doing,” said North Attleboro coach Ben McManama.
In the first period, Sam Clarke gained the zone for North Attleboro and put a shot on net that kicked off Makudera’s pad and landed on the stick of Jake Gruber, who tallied the first goal. The Rocketeers gained a 2-0 advantage in the final minute of the period when Jeff Baker scored a goal assisted by Morehouse and Charlie Connolly.
King Philip, who outshot North Attleboro 32-28, took advantage of a golden opportunity by scoring a trio of power-play goals. First, Rocco Bianculli (one goal, two assists) beat Rocketeer goalie Nick Digiacomo 13 seconds into a powerplay with the assist going to Kyle Gray (two assists).
A minute later, the Warriors tallied two more goals after Morehouse was sent to the box with a five-minute major penalty for boarding. Joe Boselli had the tying goal from Bianculli and Gray and captain Chris Daniels put the Warriors on top 3-2 when he scored on a put-back opportunity, assisted by Bianculli and Jack Coulter.
“We put ourselves in those bad positions, but we did a great job of continuing to battle through tough times,” McManama said of his team’s fight despite earning 11 minutes of penalties that led to three Warrior goals.
North Attleboro had an 11-4 shot advantage in the third period and closed the final 1:32 with a man-advantage, but ultimately could not net the game-winner.
Digiacomo finished the game with 29 saves for the Big Red including three key consecutive stops at the close of the first period, while Makudera stopped 25 shots for KP, who was able to kill off all four of their penalties.
North Attleboro (6-2-4, 2-0-2) take on Oliver Ames at Asiaf Arena in Brockton Saturday, while King Philip (6-3-1, 1-1-1) also returns to the ice Saturday against Taunton at Aleixo Arena.