Mass. Girls HS: #6 HPNA Blanks #7 Andover In Key MVC/Dual Large Contest

Gary Demopoulos
Gary Demopoulos
Gary Demopoulos has been covering prep school hockey for the HNIB News for over 30 years, and has been the editor of the HNIB News since 2005. A former sportswriter and news editor at the Woburn (MA) Daily Times Chronicle, he has been the HNIB News' key reporter for Mens Prep School hockey since 1988, as well as womens hockey, both at the prep school and high school levels. for almost 20 years. Gary also helps organize and oversee HNIB's many summer tournaments and festivals for scholastic players.

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Early on, the MVC/Dual County Large has solidified its reputation as one of the strongest girls leagues from top-to-bottom, highlighted by close, hard-fought games.

With at least a piece of first place on the line, HPNA and Andover met for the first of their two meetings this winter Saturday morning at Breakaway Ice Center.

Taking advantage of its opportunities, HPNA took a 4-0 win over Andover in a game that was closer than the final score would indicate.

With the win, HPNA resides in first place alone in the MVC/Dual County Large at 4-0-1 (8-0-2 overall), while the Warriors fall to 2-1-2 (6-2-3 overall).

HPNAs Jenny Hubbard makes save with Andovers Hannah Rowe and Lauren Adams on the doorstep during third period action.

“It really wasn’t a 4-0 game,” said HPNA coach Gary Kane. “We capitalized. We worked all week on getting pucks to the net and rebounds and just taking the puck to the net. Today was a huge win. We have been a big third period team and we’ve scored a lot of goals late. But, we told the kids ‘let’s break it down. You have to win each period as though it is a game.'”

Senior Hannah Keating scored the only goal HPNA would need just 1:04 into the game. Collecting the puck on the left wing side, Keating cut to the middle and snapped home her own rebound.

Andover had good offensive zone time in the first period (and through the whole game for that matter). But when the Warriors got shots to the net, HPNA’s Jenny Hubbard was there to make the save. She was especially busy in the third period, as Andover had a couple of power plays.

“She was phenomenal,” Kane said of Hubbard. “She has been stellar this year. That’s her third shutout. To be outshot and have the game we had, we needed Jenney to be there today.”

HPNA took control of this game with a pair of late second period goals to expand its lead to 4-0, scoring twice in a 1:02 span.

Rose MaClean of Andover looks for puck at side of HPNA net.

Keating’s second of the day, at 11:48, made it 3-0. Swooping in from the left side, the senior put home a well-placed wrister. The fourth goal came off the stick of Shelby Nassar, who made a nice move in front and fired home a high shot past Andover goalie Lillie Jagger.

HPNA’s second goal of the game was scored by Katerina Yelsits, who buried a rebound off the right post during a power play.

In the final period, Andover has many chances, including bids from Kate Gemmell, Hannah Rowe and Rose MacLean, but were unable to get a puck past Hubbard.

The two teams will be again on February 19th at Haverhill.

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