Friday Finals: Home teams open with wins in East
Northeast 3 @ Maine 6 – Laurent Trepanier scored twice to lead the Nordiques to a 6-3 win in their season-opener over the Generals. It was all Nordiques in the first half of the contest as they opened up a 4-0 lead with 1st period goals from Brendan Gibbons and Patrick Schmiedlin and 2nd period goals from Blake Rothstein and two from Trepanier. The Generals tried to keep pace with two goals in the 2nd period from Jared Scott and Sixten Jennersjo, but Maine would lead 5-2 after 40 minutes. In the 3rd period, the Nordiques took a 6-2 lead on a goal from John-Paul Steele, while Nick Ramm would add a late goal for the Generals. Thomas Heaney made 27 saves in the win, while Cullen DeYoung made 27 saves in the loss.
Johnstown 1 @ Danbury 2 – Danbury goalie Adam Johnson made 41 saves to lead his club to a 2-1 home win over the visiting Tomahawks in each team’s season debut. After a scoreless 1st period, David Matousek opened the scoring on the season for the Tomahawks just 1:28 into the 2nd period, giving the Tomahawks the lead early. Danbury responded four minutes later with two quick goals from Luka Sukovic and Pete Lajoy, putting the Jr. Hat Tricks up 2-1. Johnson would do the rest, which included 13 saves in the 3rd period. Tomahawks goalie Matt O’Donnell made 28 saves in the loss.
New Jersey 2 @ Maryland 4 – Four different players scored and William Hakansson made 22 saves as the Black Bears opened up their 2022-23 season with a 4-2 win over the defending Robertson Cup Champion New Jersey Titans. New Jersey scored just :48 seconds into the game as newly committed Ryan Novo scored his first NAHL goal. That was answered later in the period by two goals from the Black Bears just :08 seconds apart as Jesse Horacek and Brad McNeil lit the lamp for a 2-1 lead. Elliott Lareau scored for Maryland in the 2nd period to make it 3-1. The Titan cut the lead down to 3-2 later in the period with a goal from Eric Charpentier. In the 3rd period, the Black Bears got an insurance goal from Hunter Ramos to secure the 4-2 win. Titans goalie Ben Charette made 30 saves in the loss.
Fairbanks 6 @ Minnesota 2 – Six different players scored and Kayden Hargraves made 32 saves as the Ice Dogs cruised to a 6-2 road win over the Wilderness. The Ice Dogs jumped out to a 3-0 lead thanks to 1st period goals from McCabe Dvorak and Cameron Ricotta, and a 2nd period goal from Gavin Waltz. The Wilderness tried to answer back with goals from Teddy Merrill and Joe Cesario, but the Ice Dogs would respond with a goal from Marc Lund in the 2nd period and goals from Justin Biraben and Kevin Marx Noren in the 3rd period. Wilderness goalie Isak Posch made 25 saves in his NAHL debut.