The two coaches shared two main thoughts after OFA and Canton played to a 1-1 tie in Fridays Northern Conference Interdivisional Hockey game staged before a large crowd at the Edgar Newell Memorial Golden Dome on Friday.
Both coaches pointed out that it is tough to beat OFA goaltender Dave Prudhomme or Canton netminder Jake Watson with an initial shot and both emphasized that their teams need to improve their finishing efficiency as the second half of the regular season unfolds.
The duel of two of the NACs elite goaltenders lived up to its billing. Watson fielded 27 saves with 10 in the first period and 11 in the third period climaxing with a series of game-saving stops in the final seven minutes.
The Devils lone goal came 6:18 into the game when Brandon Mullin used a cleaver stickhandling move in front of the net to complete a scoring sequence where Gian Rufa and Jake Garrison picked up assists.
Prudhomme collected 11 of his 23 saves in the second period where Canton used its forecheck to reverse the flow of the first.
The Bears also gained a 1-1 tie in the middle stanza when Matt Mende one-timed a shot directly in front of the net with E.J. Curtis and Brandon Rodee assisting.
Most of our games have been close like this and we just have to improve our scoring. Jake Watson played well very tonight and made some great stops in the third period, said Canton Coach Randy Brown after his Bears finished the game at 0-2-1 in NAC play.
And their goalie (Dave Prudhomme) came up very big in the second period where we could have gotten the lead.
Coach Frederick was happy with his teams offensive pressure and the fact that the D2 Devils stayed unbeaten (2-0-1) against NAC D I opponents.
That was a big point for us tonight and puts us at 5-1-1 heading into Wednesdays game at the Islanders and we have the Brian Wade Jr. Memorial Tournament next weekend. We had a lot of scoring chances tonight. Jon Tayler and Zach Barr played extremely hard and Mark Morrow continues to come into his own, said Frederick.
We had a very strong first period and put on a lot of pressure in the third coming back from the second period where they were able to rattle us. It was a good hockey game and both goalies were very tough.
OTHER NAC ACTION
Northwood 4 - N-N 3: Northwood Prep scored twice in the third period to defeat the Flyers (6-5) in a semifinal of the Norwood-Norfolk Tournament.
Zeb Brown, Cody Smith and Austin Cousineau scored goals for the Icemen.
Plattsburgh 3 - SLC 2: Ryan Whalen scored the game-winning goal at 4 minutes, 38 seconds of the third period
Kody Kocsis scored both goals for St. Lawrence Central.
Islanders 4 - Salmon River 4: Ronnie Boots scored with three minutes, two seconds left in regulation as the Shamrocks forged a tie. Ty Terrance provided a goal and three assists for Salmon River (1-7-2, 0-4-2).
Jordan Van Brocklin notched a pair of goals for the Islanders (4-5-2, 2-5-1).
Lancaster 5 - Massena 1: Three power play goals in the second period helped propel Lancaster to the convincing win over the host Red Raiders in the first round of the Massena Tournament.
Connor Paquin worked the Massena crease for 18 saves.
Rome FA 4 - Potsdam 2: The Sandstoners gave up two quick goals to start the second period and were unable to recover in time to overcome the Black Knights in the first round of the Massena Tournament.
Mason Bartell and Trevor Keleher scored for Potsdam.