CHESHIRE — With all the partisan chatter about walls these days, there is one folks should be able to agree upon.
It’s called the Cheshire hockey defense.
With Monday night’s 2-1 victory over South Windsor at Wesleyan’s Spurrier-Snyder Rink, the Rams held an opponent to one goal or less for the 10th time this season.
That’s 10 times in 15 games.
All that’s subject to a shutdown around coach Anthony Giusto and his Cheshire hockey adminstration are opposing offenses.
That firm defensive footing is fast shuttling the Rams up the CIAC Division II ladder. WIth Monday’s win, Cheshire improved to 10-4-1 and jumped from the No. 7 rung to No. 5.
The ascension could continue Wednesday night, as the Rams travel to East Haven’s DiLungo Rink to take on Guilford at 7:15 p.m. Guilford ranks No. 1 in Division II at 12-4-0 and is coming off a wild 8-6 Saturday night victory over Daniel Hand, the top team in Division III.
Talk about the irresistable force meeting the immovable object. Guilford is averaging 5.8 goals a game. Cheshire, led by junior goalie Nick Maringola and senior captains/blue-liners James Illnicki and Ben O’Connor, are allowing just 1.4.
Sophomore Niklas Vasiljevs had both Cheshire goals against South Windsor. He was assisted by Aidan Gaudet and Joey DeLucia on a first-period strike. Kyle Sheehan assisted Vasiljevs in the second period.
Also on Monday night, Division II Hall-Southington rallied to tie Division III Tri-Town 4-4 in a non-conference crossover at Veterans Memorial Rink in West Hartford.
Initially down 3-1, the Warrior-Knights cut the margin to one goal before the first period was out. Then, after a scoreless second period, they knotted the game 3-3 early in the third.
Tri-Town (8-7-2) pushed ahead one last time with 9:02 to go. The Warrior-Knights (5-10-1) got the final equalizer from Southington’s Nate Zmarlicki on the power play with 6:25 left in regulation.
Southington’s Bobby Allan had a hand in all four Warrior-Knights’ goals. He scored the first, then assisted Mike DiPietro, Sean Roach and Zmarlicki.
Allan and the Warrior-Knights remain at home to host the East Haven Co-op (7-8-2) on Wednesday night at 7:30 p.m. Hall-Southington beat EH & Co. 5-4 in overtime on Jan. 31 in East Haven.
Also Wednesday, a major battle looms at Northford Ice Pavilion, where the Lyman Hall Co-op takes on Branford at 7 p.m.
The Trojans are the No. 2 team in Division III at 12-4-0. The Hornets rank No. 3 in Division at 10-3-3.
The Co-op will be looking for revenge, having lost to Branford 5-3 back on Dec. 22. Senior Kyle Roberts (20 goals, 28 assists), junior Matt Pettit (18/24) and freshman Jack Roberts (10/23) lead the Trojans in scoring.
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