Over the final two periods, defense helped keep Woburn within one goal of rival Burlington, and late in the game junior defenseman Mark DeSantis helped reel the Tanners reel in a point in a 2-2 tie Wednesday night at Ned O’Brien Rink.
A jumbled mess of bodies in front of Burlington goalie Derek DeCastro caused the puck to squirt out to DeSantis at the right point, where he blasted a slap shot through traffic and into the back of the net with 2:58 left to knot the game at 2-2.
“That’s the type of team we have,” said Woburn coach Jim Duran. “They grind and they work hard…and they’re playing with a lot of confidence right now.”
The Tanners (2-0-1) jumped to an early 1-0 lead when senior captain Jared Baker picked off a pass at center ice and skated in alone, putting a backhander past DeCastro (17 saves) seven minutes into the first period.
A returning salvo came two minutes later when C.J. Grinnell took a defender on a ride inside the left hash marks, flipping the puck up over the right shoulder of Woburn goalie Jeremy Flibotte (14 saves) to tie the game, 1-1.
With the pressure turned up a notch, the Red Devils (1-1-1) struck again just 31 seconds later when defenseman Adam Crowley gathered a pass off the right boards and blasted a shot that trickled between Flibotte’s pads.
“We were getting outworked in the first period,” said Woburn captain Joe Connors. “The boys just came together in the locker room and said we weren’t going to get embarrassed.”
From there the game came down to the defense, and after allowing 12 shots on net in the first period, the Tanners blue liners, led by senior Andrew Deane, clamped down and allowed only four shots the rest of the way.
“We were having a real hard time getting it out of our own end,” said Duran. “What we wanted to do was try to dump into the neutral zone and pressure their D. That’s what we did and we had a lot of success.”
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