The Marblehead boys hockey team coasted on the fumes of a four-goal second period to a 6-3 Division 3 state championship win over Westfield Sunday.
The Headers outshot the Bombers 42-19. Senior forward Chris McLeod had a goal and two assists in the winning effort.
“This is Marblehead’s finest moment right now,” Marblehead coach Bob Jackson said. “We had nine guys who have been here for four years. I can’t tell you the dedication, commitment and enthusiasm they brought every day. Good things happen to good people, and we had some good kids.”
Marblehead controlled play early in the first. The Headers outshot the Bombers 5-0 through the first four minutes and maintained strong puck possession. Still, it was the Bombers who scored first.
With 5:12 left in the opening period, Marblehead junior forward Austin Haley attempted a pass in the defensive zone that Westfield junior forward Nick Sibilia intercepted and shot easily through Header goaltender Tony Cuzner’s five-hole to give the Bombers a 1-0 lead.
Haley made up for the errant pass with 7:37 to go in the first as he banged a rebound home off a McLeod shot to knot the game at 1-1.
Westfield regained the lead with one minute remaining in the period. Junior forward Kyle Levere caught a long pass at the blue line and charged into the offensive zone on a breakaway. Cuzner broke up his initial attempt with a poke-check, but the rebound went out to Cuzner’s right and the goalie sprawled on his back in an attempt to stay in front of the puck. Westfield’s Conner Laraway lifted the puck over the sprawled Cuznor to put the Bombers up 2-1.
Marblehead erupted for four goals in the second period. The scoring started when Westfield’s Nate Barnes was whistled off for tripping. The Headers scored halfway through the power play when Ryan Dempsey drew Liberto to the left side of the net and then sent a blind pass from behind the net to McLeod, who was waiting backdoor and fired into a virtually empty net.
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