TEWKSBURY, MA -- Both Rangers squads each participated in their own league wide showcases this past weekend. The EHL team lost their perfect showcase record but went 2-1-0 over the last week, scoring a total of 17 goals over the 3 games. After the week, the Rangers now sit in 4th place in the New England Conference with an overall record of 13-4-0 and trail the Vermont Lumberjacks by just 5 points for the top spot in the conference with a game in hand.
On the other end, the EHLP squad posted 3-1-0 record over the past week and sit in 3rd place in their conference with a record of 14-3-0.
On Wednesday, The EHL team traveled to Worcester for a matchup against the Railers Jr. Hockey Club. Wednesday’s game marked the second of four matchups against their conference opponent this season. The Rangers won the first game back in October and last week's game followed a similar path. Connor Galloway put the Rangers on the board first with a goal just under 4 minutes into the contest. The Railers evened things up early in the 2nd frame, but Galloway added another goal around a minute and a half later to give the Rangers back the lead. Connor Doherty gave the boys a 2 goal advantage a couple minutes later and the floodgates opened up from there as the Rangers added 5 more goals in the period and took a 7-1 lead into the final intermission. Nathan Young, Connor Bizal, and the current Rangers leading scorer, Brent Rickett had the 2nd period goals. Jonah Nash, Andrew Keith, and Will Fisher added goals in the 3rd period and the Rangers won by a final score of 10-2. Karlis Reinis Riba was solid between the pipes, stopping 23 total shots and also had an assist in route to his 2nd win of the season.
The 3rd league-wide showcase started this past Sunday as the Rangers faced-off against the New York Applecore for the first and only time this season. After falling behind early on, Bizal tied the game up at 1 goal a piece near the end of the 1st half for his 11th of the year. Just over a minute later, Nick Weaver gave the Rangers the 2-1 advantage. Christian Snyder notched his first point with the Rangers with an assist on the goal. Martin Pietraszek added an empty net goal in the 2nd half and the Rangers won their 5th straight showcase game by a final score of 3-1. Billy Girard stopped 16 shots for his league leading 10th win of the season. Rangers co-captain, Mitchell Haight, collected a pair of assists in the win as well.
On Monday, the 2nd day of the showcase, the Rangers matched-up against the Philadelphia Little Flyers. Monday’s game marked the first and only matchup against the Mid-Atlantic opponent this season. The Little Flyers posted a strong 1st half scoring the game’s first 5 goals but Nash scored a short handed tally near the end of the frame to cut the deficit down to 4. Rickett converted on the power play in the opening minutes of the 2nd half and Galloway followed up win another goal around 10 minutes later to make it a 5-3 game. However, the Little Flyers added two more goals later on in the frame and went on to win by a final score of 7-4. Keith scored the other Ranger’s 2nd half goal and Haight collected a pair of assist again in the loss.
On Friday, the Premier squad traveled down to Newington for a matchup against the Connecticut Chiefs two days before the league wide showcase. The Rangers beat the Chiefs by a score of 10-0 last month and will play their conference opponent 3 more times after Friday’s matchup. Javen Heidergott gave the Rangers the early lead just under 8 minutes into the game for his 2nd goal of the season. The Chiefs tied things up on the man advantage early in the 2nd period, but Quinn Shepard scored a power play goal of his own just a few minutes later to give the Rangers back the lead. The league’s leading scorer, Johnny Malandruccolo, extended his point streak out to 8 games at the halfway point of the 2nd frame to make it a 3-1 game. Both Bailey Doust and Ryan Bailey added two more quick goals and the lead quickly sprung out to 5-1. After the Chiefs made it 5-2, Malandruccolo and Nick Snyder put the game away in the 3rd and the Rangers won by a final score of 7-2. Cam Libby stopped 25 shots for his 4th win of the season.
On Sunday afternoon and day #1 of the league wide showcase, the Rangers faced-off against the New Jersey 87s for the first and only time this season. Shepard gave the boys the early lead just over 5 minutes into the game and they didn't look back from there. Both Bailey and Malandruccolo added goals in the half to give the Rangers a 3-0 lead. The lead opened up in the 2nd half with 4 more goals in the frame by Malandruccolo, Shepard, Snyder, and Matt McPherson and the Rangers won by a final score of 7-0 over the 87s. Logan Palmer stopped all 14 shots that he faced for his 3rd shutout of the season.
On Sunday night, the Rangers squared off against the Philadelphia Revolution for the first time this season. The Mid-Atlantic opponent scored just 12 seconds into the game but Malandruccolo responded a few minutes later to even things up. Derek D’Arcy gave the Rangers the lead with just 18 seconds left remaining in the half for his 6th goal of the year. The boys came out strong in the 2nd half as Bailey notched a pair of quick goals followed by a Shepard power play tally just a minute after to give the Rangers a commanding 5-1 lead. However, the Revolution fought back with 3 goals of their own to cut the deficit down to 5-4. Bailey completed his hat-trick though in the winding minutes of the game and Malandruccolo added a short handed goal for his 29th of the season to put the game out of reach. Palmer stopped 15 shots in the 7-4 win for the goaltenders 8th win of the year.
On day #2 of the showcase, the Rangers matched-up against the Mid-Atlantic’s 1st place team, the Philadelphia Little Flyers. The Rangers fell behind in the first half on the power play but Derek D’Arcy scored his 7th of the year and tied the game up at 1-1 near the halfway point of the 2nd half. Unfortunately, the Little Flyers scored a few minutes later and held on to the 2-1 lead. Palmer was busy in net, stopping 32 shots in the losing effort and the Rangers 7 game winning streak came to an end.
Both Rangers squads will look to start new winning streaks as they are both back in action this upcoming week. The EHL squad will host the Seacoast Spartans on Thursday afternoon at 1:30pm to kick off the week. The Rangers are then scheduled to face-off against the Seahawks Hockey Club on Saturday night at 7:45pm followed by a game against the East Coast Wizards in Stoneham on Sunday at 11:00am.
The EHLP team on the other hand, will face-off against the Valley Jr. Warriors in Haverhill on Friday night at 8:20pm and then are scheduled to travel to Worcester for a matchup agaisnt the Railers Jr. Hockey Club on Sunday at 12:50pm.