The Norwich Sea Captains got off to a fast start in the first period of their 9-2 win over the Bay State Bobcats in North American 3 Hockey League (NA3HL) action Friday, October 28 at the RoseGarden Ice Arena, scoring four times. After both teams scored twice in the second period, Norwich sealed the win with three third period tallies. Brian Essing led the Sea Captains’ offense with a hat trick and two assists and Presley Patrin earned his first NA3HL win in the Norwich net by making 19 saves.
Jack Kinahan started the scoring 3:11 into the opening stanza when he corralled a nifty pass from Essing and rifled the puck in off the left post. Andry Guy deflected home his first NA3HL goal to double the lead a little more than seven minutes later. Tony Morran assist on both of the first goals before scoring the third one himself at the 13:06 mark of the first. Angelo Donzella and Teagen Beier assisted on Morran’s marker. Kinahan tallied again to close the first period scoring barrage when his pressure led to a break that he made no mistake on with a quick shot in tight. Jacob Begich and Essing provided the helpers on the goal.
Norwich extended their lead to 6-0 in the early portion of the second period. Chris Hamilton scored the first Sea Captains’ goal of the frame to cap a beautiful passing play by Begich and Quinten Olshan (who recorded his first NA3HL point with the assist) at the 2:31 mark. Essing netted his first of the afternoon 7:56 into the second after his gorgeous toe drag move allowed him to elude a Bobcat defender before he snapped the puck home. Kinahan and Begich assisted on Essing’s first of the afterno. Bay State responded with two quick power play goals to close the gap to 6-2 after forty minutes of action.
The third period saw Norwich score three more goals while keeping Bay State off the board. Essing found a puck in a goalmouth scramble and lifted it into the net 7:27 into the third. Donzella and Sean Loftus provided the helpers on the power play goal. At the 9:36 mark Jameson Bain jumped on a loose puck in the crease and jammed home his first of the season with Begich and Cam Hultin getting credit for the assists. Essing’s hat trick goal closed the scoring with :38 left in the affair. Morran wrapped the puck off a turnover before Essing made a power move off the wall and picked the upper near corner to provide the final goal in the 9-2 win.
Essing’s hat trick was the first in Sea Captains’ history. Patrin earned his first NA3HL win in his second start. Both teams converted twice on the power play; Bay State had five opportunities and Norwich had seven.
“This was a team effort from start to finish. We outworked our opponent in every area of the ice, which made it possible for us to stick to our game plan and secure Presley his first win,” shared Essing on his team’s performance.
The Sea Captains travel to Danbury Sunday, October 30 to take on the Jr Hat Tricks at 7 PM. Follow the action on HockeyTV if you cannot make the journey to Danbury. Norwich’s next home game will be Friday, November 11 when they host the Northeast Generals, The game will be Military Appreciation Night, so come out to the RoseGraden to support the team and recognize our military heroes! Tickets are available HERE. The Sea Captains players and staff will be running a clinic for youth players that afternoon at the RoseGarden Ice Arena as well, and all participants will receive a FREE youth ticket to that evening’s game! You can sign up for that clinic HERE.