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Goffstown School District


Goffstown School District

Goffstown School District

Game Summaries & Headlines.

Game Summary

1 month ago @ 7:41AM by 1inawesomewonder

Grizzlies Top Bearcats 4-3 in OT!

Game Date
Dec 20, 2023

December 20, 2023 - All The Way Back - Sullivan Arena, St. Anselm College -

After splitting the opening two games of the season, the Goffstown Grizzlies returned to home ice to play the Bearcats from Somersworth-Coe-Brown-Northwood. The Bearcats have been among the better teams in Division II, NHIAA Hockey the last few years, and on Wednesday night, Goffstown dug a deep hole for themselves before working to come all the way back.


All The Way Back Tie game. Third period. Sullivan Arena. Goffstown Grizzlies hockey on a Wednesday night before Christmas. What a great place to be. (Photo by Meagan Tarrier)




It was a Wednesday night, the last one before Christmas. The student section was larger and louder than in the opening game. The sense of a Christmas break on the horizon might have factored into the equation. The students on the ice, and in the stands would have plenty to cheer about over the course of the game.

The Goffstown Grizzlies spent 4:42 of the opening 11:00 minutes of the game shorthanded. And for 1:18 of that time they were 2 skaters short. Yet, Kyle Bennett and the penalty kill units kept the Goffstown deficit at 1-0. The first period ended with the Bearcats holding onto to a 1-0 lead, that could have been three or four times larger. Goffstown was outshot 15-6 and the period was territorially controlled by the Somersworth-CBNA group.

During the middle period the Bearcats were whistled for four penalties, one of which was nullified when the Grizzlies scored on the delayed penalty call. The Grizzlies failed to score on the other two power play opportunities, but they did manage to stay close in the shots on goal category, being outshot 9-8 in the period. After the Grizzlies tied the game, 1-1, they allowed two even strength goals over 1:44 of play, and thus fell into a 3-1 hole half way through the game.


All the way back It was Ava's birthday. Here she is stacking pucks before the game. A little 'puck art' goes a long way. (Photo by Meagan Tarrier)


The key to the game, obviously, was that the Grizzlies scored the next three goals, and didn't allow any more. Goffstown scored late in the second and went to the second intermission, trailing 3-2.

Despite taking three more penalties in the final period, Goffstown and Somersworth had 7 shots each in the period. The Grizzlies scored the only goal of the period, and regulation time ended with the score knotted at 3-3.

In the overtime, the Grizzlies seemed to have more left in their tank, or at least it played out that way. The Grizzlies ended up with 6 shots on goal, and allowed none.

Here is how the Grizzlies scoring worked out:

  1. Grizzlies get on the board - After a nice save by Kyle Bennett, the Bearcats cycled the puck with possession for nearly a minute. Then Austin Campbell was first on the puck in the corner and he swept the puck out to the point where Sam Chapman and a Bearcat defenseman were trying to keep the puck on opposite sides of the blue line. The puck bounced Chapman's way and he was off with the puck through center ice. He had Tyler Lessard on his right as they sped over the blue line. The Bearcats had 3 players back, one on Chapman's hip, one in front of the two Goffstown forwards and one trailing close behind. The defender in front stepped up to stop Chapman and he slid a pass over to Lessard who had a moment to settle, aim, and fire. Lessard's shot found the net and the game was tied, 1-1 for a moment. Lessard from Chapman and Campbell.
  2. Goffstown takes a step toward coming all the way back - The Goffstown Grizzlies were on the power play and had possession of the puck in the offensive zone. The Bearcats tried a clearing attempt but Campbell kept the puck in the zone at the left point. The power play ended as Campbell's pass went to the low circle where Zack Tarrier was set up. Tarrier spotted Gavin Diodati in front, or Dylan Ellbeg closing from the slot, or Owen Matatall coming in the back door from the right point. But the pass was made and Ellbeg grabbed the puck on his backhand and flipped a perfect shot into the open side of the net. It was an even strength goal and the Grizzlies cut the lead from 3-1, down to 3-2. Ellbeg from Tarrier and Campbell.
  3. Goal #3 came in period #3 and it tied the game, 3-3 with 5:48 left in regulation - Goffstown was killing a penalty when Lessard and Ellbeg broke out of the defensive zone on an innocent 2-on-2 semi-break. Ellbeg got a long shot on net but the goaltender, Dylan Cossette had to pin the puck against his shoulder and settle for a face-off. Ellbeg and Lessard were replaced by Tarrier and Chapman to finish the penalty kill. The Grizzlies lost the face-off, but Campbell and Chapman kept the puck in, then Tarrier got the puck deep. Chapman battled for the puck in the far corner as time on the penalty wound down. Eventually, Chapman was left in the corner as the Bearcats broke out of the zone. But the penalty kill pressure had slowed the breakout just enough to be in good position to defend. Matatall stepped up at center ice to force the breakout play east-west instead of north-south, just enough to allow a hustling Tarrier the opportunity to backcheck on the play. Tarrier pulled a "Pavel Datsyuk-ian" pilfer of the puck at center ice as Chapman tagged up and Diodati escaped from the penalty box. Tarrier flew into the circle and let a shot fly from just beyond the dot. The shot was a hair higher and a few feet closer than Ellbeg's shot a moment before. The puck hit Cossette and bounced up and over his shoulder and into the net. Great team play multiplied by a singular brilliant defensive effort and perfect shot. Game-Tying goal, Tarrier unassisted. 3-3.
  4. OT Game-Winner - If you are a hockey player as a junior in high school and you are a student athlete that hasn't played on the high school hockey team in either of the previous two seasons while attending the high school, then you might need some time to fit in with the group that gathers and competes for NHIAA Hockey wins. If that player is Sam Chapman and he plays his first varsity game five nights before Christmas, on home ice, for a 1-1 team against a very good opponent, then why not make it a very special night, coming all the way back, to play for and with the Grizzlies. After Chapman was leg tripped by JR Norris at center ice (no call and thankfully no injury) the Bearcats got the puck deep into the Grizzlies defensive end. Zack Tarrier had the puck on the end boards and he angled a pass off of the boards that was nicely received by Gavin Diodati along the wall. Diodati took a second and rifled a perfect pass across the ice to Sam Chapman. The pass allowed Chapman to take a hard stride or two toward top speed and the puck while cutting slightly to the middle. Chapman's line of travel and his speed blew up the defensive structure that the Bearcats had in place. Chapman flew over the blue line with two defenders chasing him, but he was gone. Chapman, on his forehand, calmly buried his first career goal which happened to be an overtime game-winning goal in his first varsity game. What a special night! The Grizzlies and their fans went wild! The Goffstown hockey team had come all the way back, to win it, 4-3 in OT. Chapman from Diodati and Tarrier. What a way to end the first game of a high school career. This also earned Kyle Bennett his first varsity win in net.


All the way back Grizzlies win! Grizzlies win! OT game-winner brought to you by Chapman from Diodati and Tarrier. No apples, just assists, goals, Grizzlies, and a team celly. Great play! (Photo by Meagan Tarrier)


NHIAA Hockey:

Wednesday, December 20, 2023

Sullivan Arena


Somersworth CBNA Bearcats: 01 - 02 - 00 - 00 = 03  (OT)

Goffstown Grizzlies: 00 - 02 - 01 - 01 = 04  (OT)



Shots on goal:

Somersworth CBNA Bearcats: 15 - 09 - 07 - 00 = 31  (OT)

Goffstown Grizzlies: 06 - 08 - 07 - 06 = 27  (OT)

Goffstown Grizzlies Penalties:

  1. Ellbeg (Trip)
  2. Tarrier (Rough)
  3. Chapman (Trip)
  4. Chapman (Rough)
  5. Diodati (Interference)
  6. Ellbeg (Rough)
  7. Diodati (Rough)

Goffstown was 0-for-2 on the power play, while the Bearcats were 0-for-5.

Dylan Cossette made 23 saves on 27 shots (.852). Cossette played all 48:31 of the game.

Kyle Bennett made 28 saves on 31 shots (.903). Bennett played all 48:31 of the game. This was Bennett's first career varsity win.



All the way back Guarding the Grizzlies Den at Sullivan Arena. (Photo by Meagan Tarrier)







The Grizzlies have a break from NHIAA League play for a couple of weeks, but they will be playing hockey over the Christmas break. They will play in the Brian C. Stone Memorial Christmas Tournament again this year. This year's schedule is similar to previous years as far as dates and times go, all at JFK Memorial Coliseum. But the schedule is determined a simple 8-team bracket. Check it out. And get out to some games. It's a great atmosphere every year.




You can follow other Goffstown Hockey stories, here.


Remembering Jen Cheney...

The Jen Cheney Memorial Scholarship and Sportsmanship Award (awarded each season)

As a sixteen-year-old junior, Jen was a manager for the very first Goffstown Grizzlies hockey team in the 1999-2000 club season. Her infectious smile and friendly nature was a joy for everyone fortunate to know her. Jen is now our eternal team angel. The spirit of Jen lives on...our team champions an angel memorial patch sewn to each uniform jersey.

On Thursday, May 18th, 2000, Jen was killed by a drunk driver. We are dedicated to memorialize Jen’s life with the Jen Cheney Memorial Scholarship and Sportsmanship Award. But we also want to deliver a message from our team angel… simply…if you choose to drink, don’t drive.


The beginning of every article. (C) 1inawesomewonder 2017.

The thoughts and opinions expressed here are those of the individual contributors, mostly mine, and do not necessarily reflect the views of the schools, coaches, players, or characters listed in any of these blog posts. Or, maybe they do, but you would have to ask them directly.

Either way, "It's a great day for hockey" ~ the late "Badger" Bob Johnson.

"We should be dreaming. We grew up as kids having dreams, but now we're too sophisticated as adults, as a nation. We stopped dreaming. We should always have dreams." ~ the late Herb Brooks.

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