PLATTSBURGH — The Northeastern Clinton boys’ hockey team pieced together a successful first period, managing a 2-1 lead at the end of 15 minutes.
But No. 10-ranked Beekmantown quickly extinguished their momentum.
The Eagles (13-3, 6-1) scored seven unanswered goals inside the final 27 minutes and 21 seconds of play to grab an 8-2 win in Champlain Valley Athletic Conference action Monday.
“We just came together,” Beekmantown junior forward Kyle Constanty said. “The first period didn’t go so well for us. Came back out and started moving our feet, looking for open areas to go and put pucks in the net.”
After the first period, the Eagles were able to establish a forecheck and get pucks in deep, according to coach Justin Frechette.
“We started playing Beekmantown hockey and that was the difference, I think,” Frechette said. “We didn’t have the jump in our legs for whatever reason in the first period, but I’m real proud of how the boys bounced back and played a real strong second (and) beginning of the third.”
Tied at 2-all, Ryan Savage, a sophomore defenseman for the Cougars (7-5-1, 3-4-1), took a vicious hit behind Northeastern Clinton’s net. He was removed from the ice on a stretcher with 10:09 remaining in the second period.
“After a delay, you’re always worried about guys’ legs and stuff, but they had the same delay, and they came back,” Cougars coach Rob Francis said. “You can’t blame it on that. It’s hockey. It’s a rough sport. Guys get hurt. You’ve got to bounce back and unfortunately we couldn’t.”
Northeastern Clinton had five power-play opportunities, but was unable to generate any sort of offense on the one-player advantage and was held scoreless.
Along with Constanty, Nate Foster, Brendan Davison, Brandon Buksa and Ryan Waterbury all scored in the come-from-behind victory.
Constanty, Foster and Buksa each recorded two tallies.
“I think, if you look at our goals throughout the year, it’s been balanced scoring,” Frechette said. “That’s been something we worked on is the depth of our team.
“Also, it doesn’t appear on the score sheet, but Tyler Pepper had a great game on the backend for us and made several key plays. Through the lineup, I thought our kids did a good job bouncing back from the slow start. (Callum) Sullivan and Pepper definitely had a good game for us.”
Constanty was satisfied with the play of the team as a whole.
“Everyone stepped up,” Constanty said. “You know, goals all around for some of these other people. Yeah, I thought we came out in the second and third period and played really well.”
Beekmantown has three CVAC games remaining on its schedule, including a pivotal matchup with Lake Placid Wednesday. The Blue Bombers knocked off the Eagles, stealing first place in the standings with a 4-2 win Jan. 22.
Constanty said the six-goal win Monday should create momentum moving forward.
“This is a big win for us,” Constanty said. “We’ve got Lake Placid Wednesday, so it’s going to be a good matchup. This is a big boost of momentum for us. We just want to finish out the season strong.”
Beekmantown 8, Northeastern Clinton 2
Beekmantown 1 4 3 — 8
Northeastern Clinton 2 0 0 — 2
First period- 1, NCCS, LaMere, 2:58. 2, BCS, Constanty (Wawrzynski, Davison), 8:06. 3, NCCS, D. Roberts, 13:08.
Second period- 4, BCS, Foster, 2:39 (SH). 5, BCS, Davison (Constanty), 7:39. 6, BCS, Buksa (Foster, Davison), 11:09 (SH). 7, BCS, Buksa (Foster), 14:54.
Third period- 8, BCS, Constanty (Barriere), 1:20. 9, BCS, Waterbury (Constanty), 1:32. 10, BCS, Foster (Buksa), 2:40 (PP).
Email Ricky St. Clair at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @Ricky_PRSports.