In an exciting game on December 22 at Loconte Rink in Medford, the Mustangs took on Norwell, and beat them 4-2 in what was a very back-and-forth game.
The first period started off rough for the Mustangs when the Norwell Clippers took an early goal 43 seconds into the game. Not the kind of team to be defeated, the Mustangs revived themselves just minutes later, with Tommy Calautii sniping a goal past the Norwell goaltender with assists to Jake Moore and Jake Porazzo at 2:51 of the period. Moments later, the Clippers score a breakaway goal, getting the puck top shelf past Mustang goaltender AJ Ansaldi. Back and forth again, the Mustangs regain control of the puck and re-tie the score with a goal by captain Jake Porazzo, assisted by DJ Galvin and Will Brennan. The period ends with the score at 2-2, and both teams frustrated with the score.
The frustration was clear in the second period with both teams fighting both physically and mentally to get the pucks deep and shoot. However, the second period went goalless. It was, however, a very physical period, with scrums breaking out on both ends of the ice, and penalties being handed out left and right. In an intense moment, four players were given misconducts for fighting; two of them Mustangs. With penalties that carried over into the third period, the Mustangs faced an uncertain end to this game.
Thankfully, the Mustangs came out fighting in the third period, with Jake Moore scoring a goal just 42 seconds in, with assists to DJ Galvin and Brendan Hussey. The period went uneventful until the Mustangs took one more goal to seal the game, scored again by Jake Moore on a breakaway, with assists to Michael Cecchini and Jske Porazzo with just 3:27 to go. With just two and a half minutes left, Norwell decides to take a time out and get their game plan together, but to no avail. The Mustangs took another victory under their belt with a final score of 4-2.
Coach DeBenedictis was “happy with the win, but unhappy with how they played.” He thought that the play was sloppy, and everything was too unfocused and out of position. He has seen better play from this team and expected more. His game plan was to get shots on net, and he was shocked to see that, even barely getting 12 shots on goal, the Mustangs got 4 goals, while the Clippers managed 25 shots and only had 2 goals to show for it. However, that does say something about the goalie, with Coach DeBenedictis saying that Ansaldi really came through in the third, and that Hussey was great on the penalty kill. Moore was also handed credit with his two goals. Jake Porazzo managing a Gordy Howe hat trick – a goal, a fight, and an assist, was also a highlight of the game, although Coach DeBenedictis was unhappy with the fighting.
Overall, the game was not one of the Mustangs’ best, but it was a fight until the end, and that is true Mustang spirit.