ORONO — After playing a couple of productive shifts together in the first period, Spencer Valley, Tyler White and Kyle Alexander asked Brewer High School hockey coach Dave Shedd if they could play together for the rest of the game.
That would mean White and Alec Wortman would switch spots with Wortman joining Jacob Chapman and Joey Fowler.
The move paid off as the Valley-Alexander-White line combined for four second-period goals and another in the third to lead Brewer to a 6-4 win over Bangor before more than 2,500 at Alfond Arena Thursday night.
Valley finished with a hat trick, White had two goals and an assist and Alexander had a goal and two assists.
Alexander had scored with 13 seconds left in the first period to give the Witches a well-deserved 1-0 lead and Valley sandwiched three second-period goals around one by White to stake Brewer to a 5-0 lead.
Zeb Tuell and Parker Sanderson pulled Bangor within 5-2 late in the second period but White’s second goal 3:26 into the third period gave the Witches some valuable breathing room which they would ultimately need as the Rams came storming back.
Cam Dickson and Sanderson scored 21 seconds apart midway through the third period after Bangor had failed to convert on a full two-minute five on three.
But the Rams couldn’t get any closer and two late penalties prevented Bangor from pulling the goalie to try to inch closer.
Eastern Maine Class B leader Brewer improved to 16-1 while winning its 10th straight after absorbing a 3-1 loss to Bangor on Jan. 4. Bangor, which entered the game atop the Eastern Maine A standings, fell to 12-5 while losing for the fourth time in its last six games.
“We came out with a lot of energy,” said Valley.
“Kyle’s late first-period goal carried over into the second period,” said White.
Alexander scored off a terrific individual effort after taking a pass from Mike Shedd.
“It was a one-on-two and I put the puck through one of the defenseman’s legs and went around him,” said Alexander, who bore in on Ram goalie Chris Howat from the right side.
“I knew I couldn’t beat him with a (quick) shot so I faked going to my backhand and put it in the short side,” said Alexander, who wedged the puck between Howat’s left skate the the post.
Up to that point, Howat frustrated the Witches with several great stops, including a blocker stop on White’s solo effort and a right-skate save off Jacob Chapman, who one-timed a Fowler pass from the edge of the crease.
The Rams, who had hung Howat out to dry in the first period with turnovers and shoddy coverage in the defensive zone, continued that trend in the second period and were victimized as Brewer scored four times in the first 6:51.
Valley scored at the :28 mark as he was left all alone in the middle of the slot and one-timed an Alexander pass out from the corner between the pads of Howat.
“Kyle did all the work on that one,” said Valley.
Valley made it 3-0 during a line change as Chapman had the puck in the middle of the slot, lost it and then reached out and poked it over to him for a one-timer into the short-side corner from the right circle.
White scored on the power play at 5:39.
“I skated into the zone, their defensemen backed up and gave me some room so I cut across the slot and the shot went in off Howat’s side,” said White.
Just 1:12 later, White fed Valley the slot but Howat made the initial save.
“The rebound came out to me and one of their guys knocked me down but I took a whack at it and it trickled in,” said Valley.
Zeb Tuell and Parker Sanderson gave the Rams some life with goals 58 seconds apart later in the period.
Tuell drove to the net and Zach Papsadora’s shot took a fortuitous deflection off a Witch into his path and all he had to do was tap it into the empty net.
Sanderson scored his team-high 16th goal of the season when he skated on to a Connor Griffin drop pass and beat Adam Cossette with a rising 45-foot wrist shot to the glove side.
White scored what he termed one of the best goals of his life 3:26 into the third period off another Bangor turnover.
The puck slipped off a Ram defenseman’s stick and he cut in on Howat from the left side.
“I didn’t think I could do it,” said White. “I figured I’d take a low shot to create a rebound but I saw a spot open on the short side.”
White roofed it from a tight angle.
Dickson scored with a short-side wrister from the right circle and Sanderson beat Cossette to the far side from the left circle but it was too little, too late.
“That (Alexander) line is good. They move the puck well,” said Bangor’s Griffin, who missed the last five minutes of the game with a skate problem. “We had too many turnovers.”
“And we didn’t pick up guys in the slot,” said Bangor’s Wyatt Frost.
Bangor outshot Brewer 31-26.
“They came ready to play and we weren’t as aggressive as they were,” said Bangor coach Denis Collins whose defense corps had three sophomores and two freshmen along with one senior.
“We dumped the puck in and chased it and I think that wore them down,” said Chapman.