High school ice hockey

One is loneliest number for Tigers, but glorious to Windjammers in victory

Camden Hills outlasts visiting Gardiner 1-0 in hard-hitting, fast-paced, late-season affair
By Ken Waltz | Feb 14, 2020
Photo by: Ken Waltz Camden Hills' Ben Wells looks at the puck and referee before a faceoff against Gardiner on Feb. 12 in high school ice hockey at the Midcoast Recreation Center in Rockport. The host Windjammers held off the Tigers 1-0.

Rockport — The young, athletic skaters flew around the ice to move the puck at near-lightning speed, but also to provide hard checks to opponents on the boards and in open spaces, while the goalies, as the old hockey cliché goes, literally stood on their heads, doing anything and everything in their power to keep the puck out of the net.

And they did that in amazing fashion — except once. In the end, that one proved a critical and game-altering number.

Thus was the scenario that played out on Wednesday night, Feb. 12 as playoff-bound Gardiner and Camden Hills battled skate to skate for every precious inch of the Midcoast Recreation Center ice as neither the visiting Tigers nor the Windjammers were willing to budge.

And because of that, each took the brunt of plenty of hard hits, with many rink athletes left sprawling on the ice or crumbled next to the boards wondering what just hit them.

Watch video and see more photos below.

The energy and electricity was high as the foes, who looked to maintain strong playoff position in Class B North, tried every trick in the book to get the puck past standout goalies Jackson Bernier of Camden Hills, who stopped all 20 shots he faced, including a few cluster chances, and Gardiner’s Quinn Veregge, who made 17 saves on 18 shots.

The lone goal — and there were plenty of quality chances for both squads in the 45-minute affair — came in the second period as the Windjammers, ultimately, sealed an important 1-0 high school ice hockey win over the Tigers.

At 6:32 of the period, Camden Powell converted Levi Guay’s assist for the game’s lone goal. And the Windjammers made that precious commodity stand up.

“In the second period we changed our approach in the defensive end and began getting better transition plays out of our end and into the Gardiner end,” said Windjammers coach John Magri. “Levi Guay used his speed to get a puck deep into the Gardiner zone and his linemate Camden Powell came flying behind him crashing the net and signaled to Guay that he was there. Guay sent a back-handed pass to the sound of Powell’s stick and Powell buried the puck in the net without ever slowing down.”

Camden Hills finished 1-of-8 in power plays and Gardiner 0-of-5.

Besides the player-to-player body checks all over the ice, there also were plenty of one-on-one tussles near the net as Windjammers and Tigers looked to carve out coveted space in front of the goalies.

The Tigers ended with a 20-18 edge in shots, including a whopping 14-2 advantage in the first period, before the Windjammers countered at 11-2 in the second. Play was more even in the third and final period.

“I have to give credit to Gardiner for their first period of play,” said Magri. “The last time we played them they were a very slow, no-pressure team. They came out in the first period and put the most pressure on our defensemen that they have seen all season. We could not play our game, we could not get out of our zone, Gardiner outshot [us] in the first period 14-2 and I just wanted to get out of the period so we could make some adjustments.  If it wasn’t for the amazing play of goalie Jackson Bernier in that first period we would have had come out in the second period with a deficit. “

In a penalty-filled game, Gardiner ended with 10 infractions for 20 minutes and Camden Hills seven for 14.

“It was not a pleasant experience to watch the unfolding of Gardiner after this one goal,” Magri said of the Tigers after the hosts scored in the second period to break the scoreless deadlock. “They stopped pressing Camden [Hills] with the same work ethic and discipline as the first period. They became more focused on ‘cat calling’ the Camden [Hills] bench and players. They began focusing on ‘chippy’ play and hence began racking up penalties and becoming unproductive. The Gardiner team we faced in the first period was one of the best teams we have faced, but they just couldn’t find the discipline or possibly stamina to keep that kind of press on for three periods.”

The coach said the end of the third period brought more penalties to Gardiner, which resulted in a five-on-three advantage for the hosts for the final minute of the game, which essentially took away any chances for the Tigers to press for a tying goal.

In the Maine Principals' Association Heal Point Standings for Class B North, Camden Hills (9-4-3, 92.5000 points) is second, while Hampden Academy (11-0-3, 99.1204 points) is first in the 12-team region. The top eight teams qualify for the playoffs.

Gardiner, which also lost 3-1 to Camden Hills earlier in the season, is 9-6 and fifth.

The Windjammers host the No. 1 Broncos on Saturday, Feb. 15 at 7:15 p.m..

“The entire Windjammer team has their focus on Saturday night’s game against Hampden Academy on senior night at the MRC,” Magri said.

Gardiner at Camden Hills ice hockey
Camden Hills hosts Gardiner on Feb. 12 in high school ice hockey at the Midcoast Recreation Center in Rockport. (Video by: Ken Waltz and Zack Miller)
The Camden Hills' student section. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Jackson Bernier. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Jackson Bernier. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Noah Quesnel. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Ben Wells. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Camden Powell. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Jason Greenleaf. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Will Gardner, left, and Charlie Griebel. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Rory Carlson, left, Nicholas Tausek, middle, and Jakob Johnson. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Elias Libby. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Levi Guay. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Ben Wells. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Scene from Gardiner at Camden Hills on Feb. 12 in high school ice hockey at the Midcoast Recreation Center in Rockport. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Camden Powell. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Charlie Griebel. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Charlie Griebel. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Jakob Johnson. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Quinn Brown, left, and Elias Libby. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
The Camden Hills' band. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' coach John Magri, middle, among others. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
The Camden Hills' bench. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Andrew Orne. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Jason Greenleaf. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Jason Greenleaf, left. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Quinn Brown, back, and Gardiner's Sean Michaud. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Ben Wells, right. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Ben Wells, right, and Gardiner's Hunter Vasvary. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Levi Guay, front. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Levi Guay, left, and Camden Powell, right, as well as Gardiner's Chase Kelley. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Elias Libby. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Nolan Delehey. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Hayden Thibeault. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Noah Quesnel. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Charlie Griebel, left, and Gardiner's Jakeb Weston. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Charlie Griebel, left, and Gardiner's Jakeb Weston. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Quinn Brown, front, and Jackson Bernier. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Jason Greenleaf. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Jackson Bernier. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Nolan Delehey, left, and Gardiner's Alex Grover. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Quinn Brown, right, and Gardiner's Cameron Rizzo. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Hayden Thibeault. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Hayden Thibeault. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Hayden Thibeault. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Charlie Griebel, left, and Gardiner's Alex Grover. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Charlie Griebel, front, and Gardiner's Alex Grover. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Jackson Bernier. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Ben Wells, middle, and Gardiner's Jared Shaw, left, and Parker Smith. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Camden Powell, left, and Gardiner's Jared Shaw. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Levi Guay, left, and Gardiner's Alex Grover. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Anna Griebel. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Charlie Griebel. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Jason Greenleaf. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Ben Wells, left, and Jason Greenleaf. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Jason Greenleaf. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Ben Wells, left, Jason Greenleaf, middle, and Charlie Griebel. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Nolan Delehey, left, and Jackson Bernier. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Nolan Delehey, front, and Gardiner's Parker Smith. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Levi Guay. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Jackson Bernier. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Charlie Griebel, left, and Quinn Brown. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Jackson Bernier, left, and Gardiner's Sean Doyle. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Jackson Bernier. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Quinn Brown, front, and Charlie Griebel. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Jackson Bernier, right, and Andrew Orne, middle, as well as Gardiner's Angelo Chadwick. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Andrew Orne, left, Jackson Bernier, middle, and Levi Guay. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Andrew Orne, right, and Gardiner's Angelo Chadwick. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Members of the Camden Hills' band. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Jackson Bernier, front, among others. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Noah Quesnel. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Noah Quesnel. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Elias Libby. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Quinn Brown, left, and Gardiner's Hunter Vasvary. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Ben Wells, left, and Gardiner's Alex Grover. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Rory Carlson, left, and Gardiner's Sean Michaud. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Rory Carlson, left, and Gardiner's Sean Michaud. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Rory Carlson, left, and Gardiner's Sean Michaud. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Charlie Griebel. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Charlie Griebel, right, among others. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Levi Guay. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Quinn Brown. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
Camden Hills' Quinn Brown, left, and Gardiner's Parker Smith. (Photo by: Ken Waltz)
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