Churchill defeats Whitman in inaugural Caps High School Game of the Week
The overwhelming fan response to the first Capitals High School Game of the Week vote was a foreshadowing of things to come. The Washington Capitals were welcomed to Rockville Ice Arena by rowdy and crazed Walt Whitman and Winston Churchill students and fans and the electric atmosphere carried over to the ice.
Both teams took part in a pre-game ceremony as Capitals assistant coach Calle Johansson dropped the ceremonial first puck, followed by a photo opportunity that included Johansson, Capitals mascot Slapshot, the Red Rockers, both school’s captains and both school’s coaches.
The fans were loud and enthusiastic as both teams came out flying. The rivalry was evident from the first puck drop as both teams finished their checks and played extremely physical. Churchill struck first as senior Zach Arden scored his first of the night with an assist from brother Jacob. Churchill took advantage of a Whitman penalty and jumped out to a 2-0 lead after Zach Satin’s one-timer beat Whitman goaltender Zach Butler. Butler kept things close with a series of spectacular saves, but Churchill carried a 2-0 lead and a 13-1 shot advantage into the first intermission.
After another minor penalty to Whitman, Zach Arden opened the scoring in the second period with a power-play goal under Butler’s glove, his second tally of the game. Whitman continued the parade to the penalty box with two-consecutive minor penalties and Zach Arden struck again, this time on a five-on-three advantage, for his third goal of the contest and first hat trick of the season. With the score 4-0 in favor of Winston Churchill, Walt Whitman got on the board as Andy Dexter pounded home a rebound in front of the Churchill net to cut the lead to three goals. With just 44 seconds remaining in the second period, Churchill took advantage of a defensive lapse and Zach Arden capped off a three-on-zero for his fourth goal of the game. Just 28 seconds later, Connor Martin beat Zach Butler through the five hole to give Churchill a 6-1 lead after two periods of play.
Seventeen seconds into the third period, Whitman senior Lucas Karron found himself all alone in front of the Churchill net and beat goaltender Alex Chen for Whitman’s second goal of the game. Less than two minutes later, Churchill responded with a wraparound goal from Christopher Lai to reclaim the five-goal advantage. A little over halfway through the third period, Whitman defenseman Stephen Nowack scored on a rebound in front of the Churchill net to make the score 7-3. Churchill held strong and was able to hold on for the 7-3 victory, outshooting Whitman 44-15.
Churchill senior Zach Arden finished the night with four goals and an assist while Connor Martin and Zach Satin each tallied a goal and two assists. Alex Chen stopped 12 of 15 shots for the win.
Whitman goaltender Zach Butler made 37 saves on 44 shots in a losing effort, keeping Whitman in the game early with some key saves. Whitman had three different goal scorers in the game, including Lucas Karron who added two assists and tallied a point on each of Whitman’s three goals.
The Washington Capitals would like to thank both Walt Whitman and Winston Churchill high schools for their participation and hospitality. Round two of the Washington Capitals High School Game of the Week voting begins today. Make sure to check out the matchups on WashingtonCaps.com to vote early and vote often!
Each week the Capitals will highlight standout teams, players and coaches from each of the three local leagues in the Capitals Amateur Hockey Roundup.
Winston Churchill’s big win over Walt Whitman in the Caps High School Game of the week put Churchill into a tie for first place with Whitman in the Montgomery 2A Conference. 2012 MSHL champion Atholton, featured in this week’s WashingtonCaps.com fan vote, remained undefeated thanks to a 9-1 win over Reservoir on Nov. 27. St. Mary’s Ryken registered two wins last week, outscoring their opponents 15-5 and jumping into first place in the Southern Conference. In addition to Atholton, other teams that remained undefeated include Marriotts Ridge (3-0-0), Northern (2-0-0), RMR (2-0-0), the DC Stars (2-0-0), Oakdale (2-0-0), the Middletown Knights (1-0-0), Annapolis Old Mill (2-0-0), Severna Park (2-0-0) and Fallston (1-0-0).
The Mid Atlantic Prep Hockey League kicked off its season on Nov. 28 as Calvert Hall and DeMatha skated to a 4-4 tie. Calvert Hall sophomore Ryan Dieter started his season off well, recording a point on all four of Calvert Hall’s goals (one goal, three assists). On Nov. 30 Gonzaga earned a 4-0 shutout victory over Georgetown Prep. Junior goaltender Nick Platais earned a 10-save shutout for Gonzaga. Four games are scheduled for MAPHL play this week, including 2012 MAPHL champion Landon facing Calvert Hall on Dec. 7.
The Northern Virginia Scholastic Hockey League resumed play last week with three games on Nov. 30. Battlefield/Patriot held on for a 7-6 win over Bishop O’Connell while Woodbridge earned a 3-2 victory over Oakton. Undefeated Stone Bridge, one of this week’s finalist for the Caps High School Game of the Week, earned its third-consecutive 10-0 victory, this time over Dominion/Parkview, and looks to be one of the league favorites early in the 2012-13 campaign. Loudoun County, WashingtonCaps.com finalist along with Stone Bridge, is scheduled to host Oakton on Sunday (Dec. 9) while fellow Caps High School Game of the Week finalist Osbourn Park is slated for a game against Oakton on Dec. 6.