When a girls hockey team has found the net 16 times through its first three games of the season, the scouting report will probably point to a high-scoring game.
But it doesnt matter who comes to play at Nashoba Valley Olympia, Acton-Boxborough coach Brian Fontas knows his goalie is always ready.
Eighth-grade sensation Cali Loblundo shut down Hinghams high-scoring offense Saturday night, making 31 saves, including 14 in the third period, as the Colonials got some revenge in a 1-0 win.
She played incredible, said Fontas. [Hinghams] offense is explosive and we just focused on team defense and getting in their face -- and we did that tonight.
Its been almost 10 months since the Colonials season came to a bitter end at the hands of Hingham at TD Garden. Loblundo fought a plethora of scoring chances that evening, but the Harbormen found the net three times.
On Saturday, Fontas had his crew key in on Hinghams top group of forwards. And even though the coach rarely matches lines, having last change gave him some flexibility while senior captain Emily Loebs and the entire A-B defense kept the Harbormen scoreless for the first time in nearly a year.
It was just lingering from last year, Fontas said. You dont need another reason to get up for this game. It was a completely different game this time around.
Without first-line center Leah Cardarelli, who will be out until at least February with a stress fracture in her hip suffered during field hockey season, the Fontas watched his second line of all eighth-graders create some magic. The Smurf line, as he calls it, put A-B on the board early when Kaitlin Hoang found the net in the first period.
From there, the Colonials played tight defense, killing off seven power plays, including a pair of five-on-threes, as A-B improved to 5-0-1. Hingham dropped to 3-1-0.
Its just nice to know that we can do that, Fontas said. Keeping an offensive-explosive team off the score board thats impressive.