The Amity Spartans Ice Hockey team hosted the Cheshire Rams in West Haven on Wednesday, Jan. 31.
The teams were fairly evenly matched, so both were prepared for a tough battle.
Both the Rams and Spartans skated fast and fought hard to be first to score, but that honor belonged to Cheshire at 12:12 when Kyle Letourneau got one past Amity’s goalie Michael Holloway on an assist from Liam Killea. Score: 1-0 Cheshire
Amity skated onto the smooth ice full of vim and vigor, and determined to get in a position where Cheshire would be trying to catch up to them and it didn’t take long. jason Csejka, one of the Spartan’s tried and true warriors who is almost guaranteed to score in every game, made an unassisted goal just 1:55 into the period.
Less than two minutes later, Jamie Blum, another star player on the team, began broke the early tie, assisted by Csejka and jacob Silliman. Then it was Csejka’s turn again making a goal on an assist from Blum at 8:18.
At 3-1 the Spartans were looking good. The puck landed in the net one more time, but it didn’t count because the referee ruled that the net moved before the goal — spectators disagreed.
With :18 seconds remaining in the period, James Ilnicki, scored for the Rams, assisted by Evan Veivia, and Letoruneau. Score 3-2 Amity.
With such a tight score, both teams were determined to win this battle. Early on it looked like it may be a heartbreaker for the Spartans, when Cheshire’s Killea, assisted by Ilnicki, tied the game at 3:41. Then at 5:50 Killea was back taking the lead with an unassisted goal and for 7 minutes it wasn’t looking good for the home team. They played their hearts out, but couldn’t land one – until, with just 1:41 remaining in the game, Blum, assisted by Colin Hughes scored and tied the game at 4.
The action on the ice was furious as the Rams and Spartans went head to head again doing everything possible to break that tie, but goalies Mike Holloway and Nick Maringola would not let anything by. So the game ended in a tie, a first for both teams.
All of the boys played to win and didn’t give up, but once the buzzer sounded there was no winner and no loser.
This was Amity’s first overtime game and head coach Mike Richetelli couldn’t have been more proud. He said “We had a solid effort from everyone tonight in all three periods.”
“Every time we play Cheshire it’s always a solid effort by both teams,” Richetelli said. “The games are always great battles. We play similar teams in tough schedules. As a result, an example of how closely we match up they were 7-6 coming into this game and our team was 6-5.”
He said Csejka (a junior) and Blum (a senior) offer so much to the younger team members. They lead by example with good sportsmanship, determination, and skill.
CHESHIRE 1 1 2 0—4
AMITY 0 3 1 0—4
Shots: Amity 40, Cheshire 31.
Saves: Cheshire Nick Maringola 36; Amity Mike Holloway 27.
Records: Cheshire 7-6-1; Amity 6-5-1.
Next Up: The Spartans are on the road at DiLungo Rink on Saturday, Feb. 3 at 1 p.m, for a game against the East Haven/Old Lyme/Old Saybrook/East Hampton co-op.