Jefferies has big afternoon, Warriors best U.S NTDP
By Ian Beauchesne (@IanBeau)
It was an early start for the Warriors and their offense on Sunday afternoon at Lawler Rink as they took on the U.S. Under 18 Team in an exhibition matchup. Alex Jefferies scored just 1:27 into the first and Coach Scott Borek’s team never looked back, en route to an 8-2 victory.
“We had a big bench, so guys sat for longer than normal. But they just stayed with it and I was really impressed with that.” said Borek, whose team registered 14 different skaters with a point, and six skaters had multipoint days.
The loss snapped a 12-game winning streak for the NTDP.
Ben Brar would get in on the scoring at 7:36 of the first period, Alex Jefferies picked up an assist and figured in on both Merrimack tallies in the opening frame.
Jefferies collected his second of the game in the middle period at 5:24 on a nice feed from Jordan Seyfert, who himself had a pair of assists in the contest as he figured in on the Regan Kimens’ goal just 2:59 later to extend the Warrior lead to 4-0.
Borek spoke on some of that depth being a key factor for the team moving forward.
“I’ve said all season that depth is one of our strengths and those guys showed that tonight,” he said.
Team USA would get on the board with a pair of goals in 2:17. Lane Hutson at exactly the midway point of the hockey game on the power play, followed by Ryan Chesley at 12:17 of the second.
Before the period would come to a close the Warriors would put a stop to any momentum swinging towards the visitors on a Mac Welsher tally just 40 seconds after their lead was trimmed to two goals. After 40 minutes it was 5-2 Warriors.
Three more goals for the Warriors in the final period came from Adam Arvedson at 9:26 on the power play, Regan Kimmens’ second of the game at 16:40, and Zach Uens with a buzzer-beater at the 20:00 mark of the game to finalize the 8-2 score.
Hugo Ollas made 27 stops in the win, while Tyler Muszelik took the loss with 26 saves on his day.
“I thought Hugo battled well today, his first real tests came on the 5-on-3 in the 2nd. But after those two goals they got, I thought he bounced back and got himself into it. He just looked very solid.” said Borek.
Merrimack will be back in action to wrap up the 2021 portion of their schedule on Friday evening when they host Dartmouth at 7 p.m. ahead of the Christmas holiday break.
Ian Beauchesne does play-by-play and public-address announcing at Merrimack College. He also hosts the Between The Hashmarks Podcast. You can follow him on Twitter @IanBeau
Merrimack 8, U.S. NTDP 2 at Lawler Arena U.S. NTDP: 0-2-0—2 Merrimack: 2-3-3—8 First Period: 1. MC Jefferies, Alex (EVEN STRENGTH, FIRST GOAL); Assist by Carlile, Declan and Drevitch, Logan; 2. MC Brar, Ben (EVEN STRENGTH); Assist by Hillier, Mark and Jefferies, Alex. Second Period: 3. MC Jefferies, Alex (EVEN STRENGTH, GAME WINNING GOAL); Assist by Seyfert, Jordan and Carlile, Declan; 4. MC Kimmens, Reagan (EVEN STRENGTH); Assist by Seyfert, Jordan; 5. US Hutson, Lane (POWER-PLAY); Assist by Howard, Isaac and Snuggerud, Jimmy; 6. US Chesley, Ryan (EVEN STRENGTH); Assist by Howard, Isaac; 7. MC Welsher, Mac (EVEN STRENGTH); Assist by Copponi, Matt and Jefferies, Alex. Third Period: 8. MC Arvedson, Adam (POWER-PLAY); Assist by Hillier, Mark and Vinnell, Zach; 9. Kimmens, Reagan; Assist by Arvedson, Adam; 10. MC Uens, Zach (EVEN STRENGTH); Assist by Messner, Mick and Sadovski, Kevin. Shots: Merrimack 36, NTDP 29 Saves: MC Ollas 27/29; NTDP Tyler Muszelik 28/34 Power Play: Merrimack 1-4; NTDP 1-2 Attendance: 1722