After falling behind 3-0 in the first period, the Toll Gate boys hockey team would battle back to force a 3-3 tie against North Kingstown at the Thayer Arena last Friday evening.
Trailing 3-2 heading into the final period, the Titans would knot the score at 3-all when Nate McCamish scored just 19 seconds into the third frame. However, both teams would battle to a draw the rest of the way and would go home with the tie.
The Skippers would get two goals in the opening 3:01 to take a quick 2-0 lead, and would add one last goal late in the period to give North Kingstown the 3-0 advantage after one.
However, the Titans would battle back in the second and get a goal from McCamish in the opening minutes, followed by a power-play score midway through the period from Camden Palumbo to make it 3-2 heading into the third.
“Moving our feet,” said Toll Gate coach Michael Champagne of the difference between his club’s later periods. “We let them take the play to us, we were watching a little too much and not taking care of stuff in our own zone. It’s all about moving the feet and executing. We came out in the second and were a different team. We have the talent but if we’re not moving our feet then it doesn’t mean anything.”
Although the Titans were hoping to secure the win, they were able to snap a 5-game losing streak. Champagne was pleased with his team’s resilience when the going got rough early in the contest.
“It’s still early. They get it, they were down a little bit, these last few games I’ve seen their heads hanging, but tonight that didn’t happen. I think we focused on that there was still plenty of time left in the game and that we could change it. They did it to their credit, they gathered themselves, had some good chatter on the bench and they righted the ship on their own,” said Champagne, who was also happy with goaltender Matt Modeen’s showing in net in which he made two big stops late in the third. “Matt fights. Even if it’s not always pretty, he’s always battling and putting himself in position to make plays. He came up with a great glove save late in the third period and that’s what he can do. He fights, it’s not always clean, but he battles and his confidence wasn’t shaken going into the second. I was proud of Matt and his effort.”
The Titans sat at 1-8-1 on the season on Monday after falling to Lincoln on Saturday, and took on Cumberland on Monday evening. Champagne hopes that the Titans will build on the final two periods and gain some momentum moving forward.
“We want to get every point that we can get. It’s disappointing not to get the points but I’m happy with the effort in the last 35 minutes,” said Champagne.