Brunswick hockey topples No. 1 ranked Loomis, 4-3

Brunswick School sophomore Christian LeSueur goes towards the Hotchkiss net during the team's home opener at the Hartong Rink. — John Ferris Robben photo

Brunswick School sophomore Christian LeSueur goes towards the Hotchkiss net during the team’s home opener at the Hartong Rink. — John Ferris Robben photo

On Wednesday afternoon at the Hartong Rink, the Brunswick School ice hockey team rallied from a 2-0 first period deficit to knock off No. 1 ranked and unbeaten Loomis, 4-3.

The Pelicans, winners of the Avon Old Farms Christmas Classic and sitting at 9-0 entering Wednesday’s tilt, scored the game’s first two goals after an evenly matched, fast-paced opening five minutes.

Brunswick, though, worked its way back into the game at a key moment. With only 28 seconds left in the first, junior Colin Slyne maneuvered his way through a pair of Loomis defensemen and snapped off a quick shot that beat the goalie under his glove  to make the score 2-1 Loomis after one. 

In the second, the Bruins utilized an aggressive forecheck to draw their opponents into a few costly penalties. Sophomore defenseman Phil Kemp, on a 5-on-3 situation, tied the contest at the 11:51 mark off a nice feed from classmate Christian LeSueur. 

Loomis stuck with its hard-nosed, first-on-the-puck forecheck to regain the lead a few minutes later after an unfortunate deflection off a Bruins’ skate blade.

It was Slyne again, however, who had the last word, as the winger struck for a power play goal late in the frame  to make the score 3-3 after two.

The final 18 minutes began with a 4-on-4 situation, and it didn’t take long for Brunswick to take advantage. 

Senior defenseman and co-captain Mike Faulkner drove wide and threw a one-handed backhander on net. The puck rebounded into the slot and LeSueur buried it to give his team the lead 4-3 with 16 minutes to go. 

From there, Brunswick locked its game down defensively, keeping a third man high in the offensive zone and backchecking with a purpose to deny any Pelican scoring chances off the rush. 

All 16 players dressed , as well as senior goaltender Matteo Esposito, teamed up to keep Loomis off the board down the stretch. 

Junior forward Jack Stephenson helped preserve the victory for Brunswick, as he laid out to block a shot and pinned the puck along the boards (while outnumbered three to one) for 15 seconds in the final minute. 

The Pelicans held a slim 31-30 shot advantage in the tilt.

Up next for Brunswick is another tough contest, as the Bruins host Westminster on Friday, runner-up to No. 4 ranked Salisbury at the Flood-Marr and 6-2 overall. Game time is slated for 5 p.m.

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