Senior center Sean Hyatt had never had a two-goal game in his Bangor High School hockey career but that changed on Friday night.
Playing in front of a vociferous and enthusiastic crowd estimated at 1,800 in the annual “Fill the Alfond” game between the Rams and archrival Brewer, Hyatt scored goals 3:56 apart early in the third period to lead the Rams to a 6-2 victory at Alfond Arena in Orono.
Class A Bangor improved to 5-3 while Brewer, a Class B team, fell to 3-4-1.
Hyatt, who had scored one goal this season, gave Bangor a 3-1 lead 2:29 into the third period and then made it 4-1 on the power play.
“It’s cool, especially to get [my goals] in the third period of a big game,” Hyatt said. “This is the last game I’ll play in this rink so it feels real good.”
“I’m so proud of him. He played an awesome game,” said senior defenseman Jacob Munroe, who scored an important fifth goal later in the period. It came 1:37 after Brewer’s Keegan Nilsson had closed the gap to 4-2.
“[Hyatt] works hard, gets assists and he makes plays. It was nice to see him finish tonight,” Munroe added.
“Those goals really pumped us up and got us going,” said talented Bangor senior right wing David Brown, Hyatt’s linemate along with senior left wing Aidan Scripture.
Ben Brook’s first-period goal and Cooper Ireland’s late second-period tally supplied Bangor with a 2-0 lead but Kevin Moreau scored on a 5-on-3 with 54 seconds left in the middle period to slice the lead to 2-1.
Hyatt re-established the two-goal cushion by intercepting an ill-advised cross-ice pass in the high slot and breaking in alone on Brewer junior goalie Tyler St. Lawrence.
“I saw [the Brewer defenseman] telegraph the pass so I picked it off and took it to the net,” Hyatt said. “The goalie dropped and stacked his pads and I put it up over his glove.”
His power-play goal came off the rebound of a blistering Munroe slap shot.
“It bounced off the goalie, hit my chest and then I put it in,” said Hyatt, who is hoping his outburst will trigger a scoring surge the rest of the way.
“My linemates have been creating plays but I hadn’t found a way to put them in. Hopefully, I’ll get more now,” Hyatt said.
Nilsson scored his first of the year on a shot from the top of the right circle after a scramble in front with 6:33 remaining.
But Munroe iced it with a 40-foot wrist shot.
“When I came down the left side, I expected their defenseman to screen [St. Lawrence],” said Munroe, whose goal was his fourth. “So I put it to the side he couldn’t see it, the blocker side.”
Scripture added an insurance goal for the Rams 1:44 later, his third of the year.
Moreau and Munroe had assists to go with their goals.
Jake Hirsch finished with 23 saves for Bangor while St. Lawrence and Evan White combined for 23 for Brewer.
Bangor took a 1-0 lead when Brook sped around a Brewer defenseman on a 3-on-2 and roofed a 10-foot wrister over St. Lawrence’s glove for his fifth of the campaign.
That came 3:11 into the game and ended St. Lawrence’s shutout streak at 101 minutes, 11 seconds.
Ireland’s third of the season at the 11:18 mark of the second period came off a Drew Dorr rush.
Dorr stickhandled neatly in the zone but the puck got knocked off his stick and sat in the high slot. Ireland skated onto it and fired a wrist shot that snuck through the pads of St. Lawrence.
Moreau pulled one back for Brewer with his fifth as he beat Hirsch with a rising wrist shot from the left faceoff circle into the short side corner through a screen.
“Bangor was a little better than we expected them to be,” said Brewer standout senior defenseman Josh Birch, who had an assist.
“We played decent but not as well as we were hoping to,” Ingerson said. “We battled. Bangor is a good team. They capitalized on our mistakes.”