Masco shakes sluggish start, defeats Marblehead

HAVERHILL — If you walked into the Valley Forum for the start of the Masconomet-Marblehead girls’ hockey game Tuesday afternoon, you would have seen the No. 24 Headers dominating the Chieftains. Marblehead was all over the No. 9 seed, outshooting Masco by a wide margin after 15 minutes.

The bad news for Marblehead was Masco goalie Molly Elmore; she gobbled up all 19 shots in the first period, and was aggressive too, leaving her crease to break up Header passes. Elmore’s teammates broke through in the second with a pair to win the game 2-0.  

Abby Gendron and Sami Kelleher set up Kate Irons with just 45 seconds gone in the second with the only goal Masco would need on their Division 1 preliminary round game.

For Kate Irons, the eventual game-winning score was her 50th point of the season.

Marblehead kept pressing after Masco’s first tally, but Ellmore wouldn’t budge, and the goal by Irons really seemed to pump up Masco after their slow first period.

The Chieftains took a 2-0 lead seven minutes after their first goal; Erin Irons buried one past Marblehead goalie Grace Bertagna’s stick side to double their lead. Anna Behringer and Riane Vatcher had assists on the goal.

Marblehead had a 9-5 shot advantage in the second, but the results were the same as they were in the second.

The teams played even in the third period, but the Chieftains are able to move on after they weathered the Header storm.

Masco coach Ryan Sugar said he was relieved when his team got a pair in the second.

“We like to come out and control the tempo, we didn’t and Marblehead played really well early on,” Sugar said. “The team really got a boost when (Kate Irons) scored, she’s been great for us all season.”

Marblehead was short two players who didn’t dress because they missed a recent practice.

Coach Chris Wells said that his team worked hard, they just couldn’t put the puck in the net.”

“The team battled, we skated very well against a big, physical team, we just weren’t able to score,” Wells added. “We’re in pretty good shape moving forward, we’re just losing one senior, our captain Grace Moroney, so we can build on this season.”

The Headers finish 10-7-1, and Masco improves to 16-3-2, and will play the winner of the Peabody-Lynnfield and St. Mary’s game.

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