BENSALEM—The pattern is becoming all too familiar for Holy Ghost Prep. Matthew Frett scored 35 seconds into overtime to give Gloucester Catholic a 2-1 win over the Firebirds Thursday afternoon at Grundy Arena.
It marked the third time in three games Holy Ghost Prep has gone down to defeat following regulation. The Firebirds (4-8) fell to LaSalle in overtime on December 21 and St. Joseph’s Prep in a shootout on December 14.
The winning goal came on a two-one one situation. Frett carried the puck down the right wing, took his time, and beat Firebird netminder Sean Joyce.
“It’s just really frustrating,” said Holy Ghost Prep coach Gump Whiteside. “We’ve just got to start winning some hockey games. We’ve got to care a little bit more, we’ve got to work harder, and just get better.”
For most of the afternoon the teams skated on even terms. The game got off to a fast pace. Six minutes of the opening period passed without a whistle. Joyce came up big when he denied Gloucester Catholic’s Carter Jones with six-and-a-half minutes left in the period.
Frett got his team on the scoreboard with just 61 seconds left in the opening session. Tyler Carter took the initial shot from the left wing. Joyce made the save but Frett put in the rebound.
Holy Ghost Prep was forced to come up by big on the penalty kill in the second period when defenseman Jack Kelly drew a five-minute major penalty plus a game misconduct, at the 6:48 mark for head contact. The Firebirds stood tall at the start of the subsequent power play before things even up when the Rams’ Connor Millikan drew a boarding call at 8:06.
The third period saw the Firebirds fail to take advantage of one power-play chance but they got a second when Frett was sent off for hooking with 4:31 left in the game. This time the hosts were able to capitalize. Stefen Melekos took the initial shot from the right wing, Ram goaltender Christopher Liscio made a quality save but Byron Hartley put in the rebound with a forehander.
The sudden-death overtime period was over seemingly in the blink of an eye.
“There were parts of the game where I thought our effort was really good,” Whiteside said. “Puck possession time, I thought we did some really good things. But again, we lost 2-1 and that’s the bottom line.”
Notes—Gloucester Catholic was a semi finalist a year ago in the New Jersey High School Athletic Association’s private school tournament. It is one of four schools that is playing a round robin with Atlantic Prep athletic Conference teams. The others are The Hun School, Princeton Day, and St. Augustine.
Gloucester Catholic 1 0 0 1—2
Holy Ghost Prep 0 0 1 0—1
First-period goal: Matthew Frett (GC) from Tyler Carter, 14:59
Third-period goal: Byron Hartley (HGP) from Stefen Melekos and Thomas McNulty, 12:16 (pp)
Overtime goal: Frett (GC) from Jake Grace, :35
Shots: Gloucester Catholic 27, Holy Ghost Prep 25; Saves: Christopher Liscio (GC) 24, Tristan Devine (HGP) 25