“It’s becoming an issue,” Spillane said of his team’s inability to score on the power play. “It’s something we’re working on. I takes five skilled players on a power play to make something happen, but our five skilled players this year aren’t making good decisions.”
The Clippers’ strong defense would not be able to hold forever as Franklin’s Ryan Spillane tipped one in on a wrap-around goal with just 30 seconds left in the period, assisted by Mason Saunders and Joe Bourque, to tie things at one going into the final period.
Both teams came out for the third period equally hungry and equally matched, with each team seeing their opportunities and frights. But the equality would trump all and both teams would have to settle for the non-league tie.
“We’ve played each other for many years, and every year it’s the same type of game,” Spillane said. “It prepares you. You have to play up so when we get to your league, your guys are playing at a higher level than what your league is. So, every time you have a chance to play a quality, non-league opponent, you’ve got to jump on it. Newburyport is consistent. They’re neither up nor down, they’re a good team every year.”
“They’re a good team,” Yameen echoed of the Panthers. “I think they controlled the second (period) a little bit, and we came back and controlled the third. I thought we might have deserved a little bit better than a tie, but hey, they’re a good team and that is why we play them every year.”