Bridgewater, NJ – The Islanders Hockey Club swept the New Jersey Rockets 3-1 and 5-1 to push the longest win streak of the NCDC season to 16 games. Both games were dominated by the visiting team and also were some of the chippier games of the season. Despite the blatant attacks the IHC played through and persevered by outshooting their opponent by a two to one margin each game.
Saturday would see both Liam Darcy and Justin Pearson lead the way with a goal and an assist. Darcy would strike first in the second period when he took a feed from Mark Gallant and Jeremy Cote playing 4x4 and let a laser go for the 1-0 lead. Luke Rowe would tie things up 1-1 in the third, but George Sennot just a couple minutes later would score the game-winning goal with Pearson and Mark Cheremeta picking up assists. Ninety seconds later and on the PP Justin Pearson would score on a rush play set up from Darcy and goaltender Louis Felix St-Jean, easily the best puck moving goaltender seen in years. He would also finish the night and remain undefeated for the year stopping 21 of 22 shots.
Sunday would be more of the same with slashing; hooking, and interference play reminiscent of the mid-90’s. It would not take long for the IHC to get on top this day with Justin Pearson opening the scoring with Hayden Taylor and Jeremie Lavallee getting helpers. Mark Cheremeta would take a beautiful tic-tac toe play from Lucas Michaud and Matt Dillon and make no mistake one timing an open net goal for a 2-0 lead. Michaud would score one of his own on the PP with Lavallee and Brent Hill helping out on the play for a commanding 3-0 lead after the first.
The Islanders would start the second shorthanded for a bench minor due to Coach Tremblay standing up to the officials in an effort to protect his players. Several guys would be injured on stick infractions not called by the referee on this day. His players would respond killing off the PP and going on the attack. Halfway through the period Justin Pearson would re-direct a beautiful shot/pass from Liam Darcy. Eric Nilsson would also assist on the play. Late in the second, Matt Dillon would transition the puck to Jonathan Young who would send Mark Gallant wide at the blue line. Gallant would burst past the defender, cut in hard and put on the brakes and tuck one backhand short side for a beautiful goal. Despite many attempts in the third, Doug Connor would stop all 20 shots faced and keep the coring at 5-1. Justin Ferguson would fight through the game after being run hard in the second period and having to spend a few minutes on the bench recovering. He would finish the day making 20 saves.
The IHC will host the CT Rangers this weekend at Merrimack College with a 1pm puck drop on Saturday in Gallant Arena and an 11:30am tilt Sunday in Lawler Arena.