PEABODY — The St. Mary’s girls hockey team struck early and often Wednesday evening as the Spartans skated to a 5-0 win over Peabody/Lynnfield on the road at James McVann/Louis O’Keefe Rink. With the win, St. Mary’s remains unbeaten on the year.
“I think this was one of our better all-around performances of the season,” said St. Mary’s coach Frank Pagliuca. “We were able to capitalize on our opportunities, we got great goaltending and we played solid team defense, so it was good to see.”
Sophomore Marina DiBiasio and eighth-grader Jenna Chaplain led the way with two goals apiece for the Spartans. Senior Codi Butt added one goal, while senior Mady Hentosh had three assists. Junior Zoe Solomons and sophomores Felicia D’Alessandro and Sam Porazinski each had one assist. Senior goalie Lauren Vaccaro had 20 saves in the victory.
For Peabody, junior captain Sammie Mirasolo, senior captain Kathryn DiGiulio and sophomore Jen Flynn all played solid games. Senior captain goalie Abby Buckley had 23 saves.
“It was a pretty competitive game for the most part, but we only played in spurts,” said Peabody coach Michelle Roach. “There were times when we were able to get into our game, but we just couldn’t sustain it.”
The Spartans jumped out to an early lead in this one thanks to the power play. St. Mary’s drew a penalty less than five minutes into the game, which led to Chaplain’s first goal on a sweet pass from Hentosh. Just over 30 seconds later, DiBiasio netted her first goal of the game on a pass from D’Alessandro. All of a sudden, the Spartans held a 2-0 lead.
Special teams was a big part of the game on both sides. St. Mary’s was able to capitalize, scoring two power play goals and shutting out the Tanners on the penalty kill. The Spartans also scored a goal during four-on-four play.
“I think that was really the difference in the game, the fact that we were able to capitalize when we got those opportunities,” Pagliuca said. “We’ve really started to focus on special teams as the season has progressed, so to get a couple goals on the power play tonight was great.”
“When you play good teams like this, you just can’t give them that many good chances like that,” said Roach. “You have to minimize your mistakes when you play a team like that.”
The Spartans scored again right out of the gate in the second period. Just 22 seconds into the frame, Solomons found Chaplain in front of the net to make it 3-0. Less than three minutes after that DiBiasio scored her second goal on a dish from Hentosh to make it a four-goal lead, which is where the game stood after two periods.
The third period saw one more goal from the Spartans, this one a powerplay tally from Butt on an assist from Porazinski. The Tanners did get two power play chances in the final period, but they were unable to capitalize.
Both teams have big games coming up next, as the Tanners (6-2-1) will prepare to take on a strong Bishop Fenwick team Sunday morning (9).
“We’re going to get right back to practice tomorrow to start preparing for Sunday,” said Roach. “We know it’s going to be another tough test for us.”
St. Mary’s (7-0-0) has a Catholic Central League game against fellow unbeaten Austin Prep Saturday (8:10).
“That’s a big league game for us, so we’ll have to be ready to go,” said Pagliuca. “We’ll enjoy this win tonight and get back to work tomorrow.”