Salem trails 1-0, comes back to tie G.P. South 2-2 before winning in a shootout
Trenton – Day one of the 2016 MIHL Prep Hockey Showcase had six games slated for action, and one of the headline games was Grosse Pointe South facing Salem at the Kennedy Ice Arena in Trenton.
Salem won in a shootout after regulation time ended in a 2-2 tie.
Senior forward Evan Newell got the lone tally in the shootout.
“I really don’t know how I scored to be honest, I just went down and kind of saw the corner for a second and put it there,” Newell said.
The game started off slow with each team playing possum until South (14-4-1), ranked No. 12 in State Champs’ top 25, was called for back-to-back holding penalties less than a minute apart.
The Blue Devils killed off the first penalty and then went ahead on a shorthanded goal with 6:20 to go in the first period. Senior forward and captain Adam Pitters scored on an assist from senior defenseman Brendan Cauvel.
“I’m proud of our play tonight, we’re playing top ranked teams and it’s really good competitive hockey,” Pitters said of the game and tournament.
Unranked Salem (10-7-2) tied the game early in the second on a goal from Newell.
The second features a number of solid hits by both clubs. The Rocks took a 2-1 lead with 1:55 left on a goal by junior defenseman Marty Mills with the lone assist credited to senior forward Nick Callegari.
Salem nearly increased its lead on a shot that rang off the post with 30 seconds left in the period.
The Blue Devils drew level with 13:55 to go on a power-play snipe from senior defenseman Bailey Thompson. Junior forward Jake Saunders found his teammate in the high slot for the assist.
Salem withstood some extreme pressure from South midway through the period after the Blue Devils had killed of a hooking penalty.
“We played in their end most of the third period and got lots of pucks to the net,” South coach Bobby McKillop said.
Both sides continued battling hard for the remainder of the third period, with play getting physical around the nets.
In the shootout Salem junior goalie Matt Visel stopped all three Blue Devils shots to earn the victory.
“It was a good game, back and forth. They outplayed us for stretches but we found a way to keep it close and pull it out in the shootout,” Salem coach Ryan Ossenmacher said.