NEWBURYPORT — Coming off of a decisive victory over Amesbury on Wednesday, it would have been understandable if Triton hockey came out slow against a Pentucket team that’s been struggling all season.
Instead, the Vikings played one of their best games of the season.
Triton came out in the first period with authority and didn’t let up for the rest of the game, eventually skating to an 8-0 win Saturday afternoon. Seven different players netted goals, with the Vikings outshooting Pentucket 41-11 in a dominant all-around performance.
“Moving our feet, beating them to the puck. We passed the puck the best we have all year tonight.” said Triton coach Ryan Sheehan said of his team afterwards. “We’re taking care of the [game] that we should be winning.”
The scoring started early for the home team when forward Ben Rennick passed the puck from behind the net to the high slot for fellow junior Aidan Lowry, who buried it in the back of the net at 11:52 in the first quarter. Less than two minutes later, captain Brad Killion drove home a loose rebound off a slapshot from defenseman Tyler Godfrey for the second goal of the game.
Triton scored once more before the period was over, capitalizing on what would be the first of seven Pentucket penalties. The Vikings worked the puck around the perimeter of the offensive zone before Cael Kohan fed James Tatro for a one-timer at the top of the circle that he ripped bar-down less than 30 seconds into the power play.
“Penalties were a killer,” said Pentucket coach Mike Lincoln. “When you’re already down in the game and you have to play five-on-four, five-on-three, and five-on-four again ... You can’t score goals like that.”
Pentucket tried to establish some physicality out of the gate in the second period, but Triton kept its composure, maintaining control of the puck in the offensive zone. Before long Triton scored again off another opportunistic rebound from junior Jack Forrest.
The Sachems made a goalie change following the latest goal, but despite the change up Triton was back on the board a minute later. Senior Jack Niska slid a cross ice pass to Ryan Lindholm, who scored with 7:13 remaining in the second.
Richie Hardy tried to give Pentucket a spark with back-to-back break away opportunities following the goal, but was snubbed both times as Triton goalie Josh Bradley did his part to earn the shutout. Pentucket managed to fend off the onslaught for the rest of the second period, despite taking three penalties in the last three minutes.
Triton finished the game much the same way they started, with Rennick, Niska, and Lowry contributing goals in the third period to close out the win. Pentucket made a few more efforts in transition to get on the board, but they were unable to establish much offensive rhythm, and Triton was able to hold on for the win.
Triton will look to continue its two game win streak at home against Lynnfield on Wednesday night, while Pentucket faces a quick turn-around to prepare for Wilmington on Monday.
“I’m real proud of the way this team has responded to adversity,” Sheehan said of his team’s past two performances. “What we have to do now is prove we can play with the big dogs in this league.”
Triton 8, Pentucket 0
Pentucket (1-7): 0 0 0 — 0
Triton (7-2-1): 3 2 3 — 8
Goals: T — Aidan Lowry 2, Brad Killion, James Tatro, Jack Forrest, Ryan Lindholm, Ben Rennick, Jack Niska
Assists: T — Rennick 3, Tyler Godfrey 2, Cael Kohan, Brady Lindholm, Mike Beevers, Evan Piscatelli, Connor Kohan, Forrest, Tatro, Niska