North Andover, MA – The Islanders Hockey Club made it seven in a row by toppling the Jersey Hitmen in a weekend sweep and moving into 1st place in the NCDC. Currently 11-1-0 with 22 points and 3 games in hand, the IHC have worked hard to get better every week and it has certainly paid off for the boys in blue and orange. Game one could have been over early if not for the goaltending of Ryan McInchak, but it would still be the Islanders who would strike first when Jeremy Cote (UVM) would pop home a rebound off a Jonathan Young (Merrimack) and Tyler Levine play. Early in the second Brent Hill would once again score, his fifth game in a row, to make it 2-0 with Jeremie Lavallee assisting. The Hitmen would tie things up before the end of the period with Ryan Finnegan and Martan Yelle picking up goals.
The Islanders would put some outstanding shifts together and 16:18 into the third Hayden Taylor would take a feed from Sam Nestor at the red line, blow by the Hitmen defense and cut across and tuck one past McInchak for a 3-2 lead. George Sennott would take a Mark Cheremeta pass and end the game with an empty netter. Justin Ferguson would make 26 saves for the win.
Game two would see the Hitmen come out with more intensity, but this day would be Justin Ferguson proving over and again why he is the top goalie in the NCDC. The Dartmouth recruit would finish the day with 45 saves, including a shorthanded breakaway he would glove standing up and then break the puck out for the IHC. The Islanders would still strike first with just 1-second left in the first period. With seconds remaining and a faceoff looming in the offensive end, the IHC would make some personnel changes and run a perfect faceoff play ending with a great tip by Lucas Michaud off a JJ Layton shot.
The Hitmen would however strike just 33 seconds into the second when Tyler Coffey would put one in from Tuomas Halonen. Just minutes later the Islanders would again take the lead off a beautiful power play goal from Hayden Taylor with tremendous playmaking going to Jeremie Lavallee and Brent Hill. Tyler Levine would get his first goal of the year when he took a beautiful feed from Jonathan Young and one-time a bomb past a helpless Alex Mosquera.
Mosquera would later be left all alone due to a beautiful pass from Lucas Michaud on the PP. With three Hitmen defenders in the corner, Michaud quickly identified a wide-open Mark Cheremeta in front of Mosquera. Cheremeta would make a nifty move and backhand one top shelf for a commanding 4-1 lead. The Hitmen would make it 4-2 when Remy Parker would pick up a missed shot off the wall and tuck one past Ferguson. Later in the third, the Islanders would strike for their third power play goal going 3 for 6 in the day when Nestor would find Liam Darcy who would quickly get it to an open JJ Layton on the right point. Layton would walk to the slot and rip a laser over the blocker of Mosquera and the 5-2 win.
The IHC will take a break next weekend and return to action when they travel to the CT Rangers November 4 and 5 while the Hitmen will travel to the Fall Beantown this weekend.