On Saturday, Cheshire High School ice hockey (7-6-2) battled host Daniel Hand (10-1-1) to a 1-1 tie at Northford Ice Pavilion. The Tigers outshot Cheshire 40-29, but senior goalkeeper/co-captain Nick Maringola came up clutch with 39 saves and CHS was opportunistic in jumping out to the early lead.
Hand received a power play in the first period, but Cheshire answered with the opening goal just 5:06 into the contest. Junior co-captain Niklas Vasiljevs and classmate Thor Novicelli skated into a breakaway and despite Hand junior goalkeeper Eric Dillner (28 saves) making a save on a shot by Vasiljevs, he still scored a short-handed goal on the rebound.
The Rams killed a power play in the second period, but the Tigers still tied the game on a shot by junior Tatum Fitzmaurice with 8:53 left in the third. Sophomore Kevin Sandor picked up an assist on the play.
CHS went on the power play with 3:04 remaining in regulation, but were unable to score and the game went into overtime. Hand looked to capitalize after the Rams were given a 5:00 major penalty for hitting from behind with 3:34 left in overtime, but Cheshire held their rival scoreless and got back to even strength when the Tigers committed a hooking penalty with 26.8 seconds remaining.
While not coming away with a victory, the Rams picked up a point with the tie and qualified for the Division II state tournament.
After a week-long break from action, Cheshire returns next Saturday to host Guilford (5-6-1) at Wesleyan University. Start time is 6:05 p.m.
Before the game, the Rams will hand out the Ninth Greg Schena/Mark Whitlock Award. Annually awarded to a CHS player, the honor was created in memory of a pair of 2001 graduates who passed away a week apart in May 2010.
The Rams secured 17th place in the Highlander Invitational at Portland. At 132 pounds, junior co-captain Eli Moskowitz went 3-2 to lead CHS. After missing the majority of the regular season due to injury, sophomore Riaz Ras picked up his first wins at 220.
Next Tuesday, Cheshire visits Wilbur Cross to face host New Haven Co-Op at 6 p.m.
CHS placed 11th (68 points) in the 15th Southern Connecticut Conference Championship at North Haven. The Rams also performed as a Unified Team.
Reagan Gromko received All-SCC for the second straight year and co-captain Hannah Roberts earned the distinction for the first time.
Girls’ Ice Hockey (10-4-1)
At Hamden’s Louis Astorino Ice Arena, Amity/North Haven/Cheshire Co-Op fell 5-0 to Hall/Conard Co-Op (1-13). Hall/Conard netted two goals in the first period and added three more in the third to pick up their first win of the season.
Next Thursday, the Connecticut Blades travel to the International Skating Center of Connecticut to face host Simsbury at 4:20 p.m.