PWN Korey Lubinger #9 beats PAC goalie Nicholas Berube after receiving a tremendous pass from line mate David Selden (top left)
by Marc Ayotte With the D-3 hockey playoff picture quickly taking shape down the stretch, the Pack strengthened their hold on third place in the standings, despite a home loss against mediocre Somersworth on February 8. A Wolf Pack road win against Pembroke- Campbell three days later, combined with a recent Hollis-Brookline loss to first place Kennett, helped solidify W-P’s third place position. Heading into the final four games of the regular season, the Pack (10-3) is ahead of the Cavaliers (9-5) in the all-important rating category, by a relatively comfortable .6 points.
Still without the services of key personnel, the Pack came out punch less against last years’ defending champion Somersworth team in a game last Wednesday at Salem’s Icenter. As a result, the Hilltoppers used goals from Austin Siering and Dominik Hlinica to jump out to a 2-0 first period lead.
At 3:26 of the second period, a penalty to Somersworth’s Siering presented the Pack with an opportunity to get back in the game. However, the Pelham-Windham power play seemed uninspired as they remained two goals down until 6:43 of the period. At that point things got worse, when (appropriately named Hilltopper) Stevie Wolf beat Pack goalie Brendan O’Connell for a 3-0 lead. A key save by O’Connell on a breakaway by Somersworth’s Wolf with 5:34 remaining kept the visitors off the board, but a lackluster W-P offense saw
them heading into the third period, trailing by three.
At 3:38 of the final frame, the
Pack struck for their first goal of the night. Porter Carelli riffled a wrist shot from the top of the left face-off circle, beating Somersworth goalie Cory Soule. Thirty six seconds later, Captain Korey Lubinger pulled the Pack within one, at 3-2. The Wolf Pack come back was momentarily derailed when Somersworth apparently took a 4-2 lead, but the goal was waved off by way of a delayed penalty call against the Hilltoppers. However, once again the Pack was not able to capitalize on the man advantage situation. One minute after the W-P power
play expired, the Pack defense allowed another breakaway, this time by Somersworth’s Jonathan Hansen. And this time the Hilltopper converted, beating the Pack goalie to his stick side for a 4-2 lead. With less than three minutes remaining in regulation, Dustin Lubinger made things interesting by beating Soule and pulling the Pack to within a goal at 4-3. With 1:04 left on the clock, Nick Neary threaded the needle, sending Matt Cerretani in for an excellent scoring chance, but Cerretani’s bid to go five- hole on Soule was unanswered. And at 14:45, Siering scored his second goal of the game for Somersworth, an empty net tally that handed the Wolf Pack a crucial 5-3 loss. As a result of the loss, W-P’s record dropped to 9-3 on the year. Pack Wins OT Thriller
February 17, 2012 - 9 Sports Wolf Pack Splits Pair of Crucial Games On Saturday, February 11, the
Wolf Pack team bus headed north to Hooksett and the Tri-City Arena for an encounter against another joint-force foe in Pembroke-Campbell. The host Spartan-Cougar combo was read-hot entering the contest, winners of five straight and outscoring their opponents 32-10 during that stretch. After three periods of fantastic end to end hockey, which featured solid checking and a combined 89 shots on net, could not determine a winner, the Wolf pack’s Dustin Lubinger took matters into his own hands. Just 19 seconds into the extra session, the sophomore scoring machine, while perched in the slot, slid the puck past partially screened PAC goalie Nicholas Berube, for a pivotal and dramatic 5-4 overtime win. The Pack jumped out to a 2-0 lead at the end of the first period on the strength of two goals by Dustin Lubinger. Ahead 1-0 at the time, ‘D- Lube’ redirected a Nick Neary shot from the point past Berube for the two goal lead as the Zamboni made its first appearance. And if not for the spectacular performance between the pipes by Berube, the Pack lead could have been sizably bigger. Although Pelham-Windham held a decidedly territorial advantage through most of the first two periods, they were unable to build upon their two-goal lead. In a sudden switch of momentum, a PAC burst of energy turned the game around with less than two minutes remaining in the middle frame. At 13:09, P-C center Cade Lacroix broke in alone on Michael Donovan, slipping a shot past the left pad of the Pack goalie, cutting the lead in half at 2-1. Thirty-eight seconds later, Michael White tied the game for PAC as the two teams awaited the start of the third, deadlocked at two goals each.
An extremely entertaining third period saw Pembroke-Campbell score their third unanswered goal at the 5:31 mark. On an assist from Nicholas Christino, Lacroix scored his second goal of the game, giving his team their first lead, 3-2. The Pack came right back when David Selden slid a beautiful pass through the PAC crease to Korey Lubinger who directed the puck past a sprawled Berube into the empty net to tie the score at three. Two minutes later, the Pack regained the
Lady Pythons Make a Season-Ending Statement
by Marc Ayotte On February 2, the Pelham girls’ varsity basketball team stood at 3-8 and occupied one of the lower rungs of the girls’ division II basketball ladder. Since that time, the Lady Pythons have rattled-off four consecutive wins and are in excellent position of making the post season. This past week, the Pythons aided their playoff push with a thrilling 59-54 overtime win against Pembroke on the road along with a 71-23 thrashing of Manchester West, also away from the friendly confines of the Snake Pit. On Friday, February 10, the Pythons used some late game heroics
by Alicia Gendron and Gina Grimes to overcome a double digit deficit and emerge with a crucial win over the Spartans, giving Pelham a much needed five points in the standings calculations. Down by 11 points with under 4:00 left in the game, Gendron’s ‘tres’ cut the Pelham deficit to eight, beginning the fantastic finish. Freshman Katelyn Surprenant’s hoop with: 06.2 showing on the clock cut Pembroke’s lead to two. What happened next proved to be a Pelham-favorable and fatalistic event. Inexplicably, yet much to the delight of Python head coach Bob Shepard, Pembroke, with possession of the ball called a time out with 2.6 seconds remaining in the game. On the ensuing inbounds play, the Spartans turned the ball over, leaving 1.2 ticks on the clock. Up stepped Gina Grimes; the junior forward buried a buzzer-beating jumper that tied the score at 53, sending the game into OT. In the extra session, Shepard says “our veterans came through.” Behind Grimes’ basket and two free throws as well as Becca DeBaldo’s two makes from the charity stripe, the Pythons outscored the Spartans 6-1 and made the trip back to Pelham, owners of the five-point win. Three days later, the girls’ added fuel to their playoff push with a resounding 48 point crushing of the Blue Knights. Ahead 20-0 four minutes in, and 26-2 after the first quarter, the game’s outcome
was never in doubt. All 13 players who saw action made their way into the scoring column. Becca DeBaldo used two-triples, three conventional baskets and seven free throws in pouring in a team high 19 points. Katelyn Surprenant, filling in at point guard, chimed in nicely with a 14 point performance. Other notable Python scorers were Hannah Paitchel (7), Brenda Pietrillo (6), Lauren Anderson (6) and Kathryn Mostone and Gina Grimes, each with five points. The win improved Pelham to 7-8 with two games remaining; both games on the road with one against Milford and the season finale at Windham on February 28.
HER E W E ARE
Dustin Lubinger, #11, celebrates his game winning hat trick against Pembroke-Campbell; Porter Carelli #10 and Korey Lubinger #9 join in the celebration
Dustin Lubinger fires a wrist shot over the glove hand of Somersworth goalie Cory Soule for one of his team-leading 19 goals
lead when Nick Neary’s bullet from the blue line beat Berube, giving W-P a 4-3 lead with 7:16 left. In the ebb and flow action that epitomized the final period, Pembroke- Campbell retaliated. Eighteen seconds after they had surrendered the lead, Kevin Gallagher knotted the contest at four, with assists from Christino and Lacroix. During a 15 second span late in the game, the Wolf Pack challenged what proved to be their ultimate fate. Back to back undisciplined W-P penalties gave P-C a two-man advantage for 1:45 – but the Spartan/ Cougar power play was unable to cash
in. The two teams played to a 4-4 tie at the end of regulation, setting up the scintillating – albeit brief- overtime period. With line mates Porter Carelli positioned just behind him and brother Korey staked-out near the right post, Dusting Lubinger’s wrist shot from about five feet out in front of the PAC crease found its way to the back of the net, polishing-off another hat trick performance while giving the Pack an exciting 5-4 win and solidifying their hold on third place in the D-3 standings.
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