If you look at the history the odds seem to be stacked against the East Boston High School boys hockey team to beat rival Latin Academy in Thursday’s Boston City League Championship at Northeastern’s Matthews Arena.
This will be the fifth time the Jets and Dragons have faced off in the title game with Latin Academy 4-0 against Eastie for the Championship.
“Numbers hurt me but if our goalie plays as good as the last time we met this season we could steal a victory,” said Eastie Coach Bob Anthony.
Anthony is referring to the game when the Jets faced off against Latin Academy at Fenway Park as part of this year’s Frozen Fenway event.
Eastie’s Sean O’Halloran made 50 saves during the game despite the Jets falling to the Dragons 4-3.
Anthony said he was proud of how his struggling team played during that game and if they play with the same heart and intensity they may be able to pull out a title.
“We were right in the game the whole time,” he said. “We got a couple of breaks and missed one opportunity in the final minutes of the 3rd period to tie it but Latin Academy’s goalie got a piece of the puck.”
That shot was by Danny Auch and would have been his second goal in the game.
The Jets were down 2-0 in the first period but a goal by Patrick Sullivan made it 2-1.
Then with 57 seconds left in the 2nd period Auch slipped one past the goalie to tie the game.
The Dragons regained the lead in the 3rd with a goal by Latin Academy’s Kevin Moran. Moran would finish the game with a hat-trick and was an unstoppable force on offense. Latin Academy built on their lead with another goal giving them a 2-point lead over Eastie.
However, Zach Leavitt blasted one into the net off a face-off making the score 4-3.
With minutes left in the game, Auch surprised Latin Academy’s goalie with a slap shot that nearly tied the game.
“He wasn’t expecting the shot and was able to just get a piece of it,” said Anthony. “If it was a second earlier we would have tied the game on that shot.”
During the last City Championship O’Halloran stopped 44 shots by Latin Academy.
“He could be the deciding factor,” said Anthony. “If we put a couple of points on the board and he’s able to stop the puck we could be in good shape.”