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Casco Bay Mariners Advance to Nationals in 2OT Thriller

By Michael Hicks - Special to, 03/24/16, 4:15PM MDT


Celia Bagnia scored to send the Tier II 14U team to nationals.

It wasn’t easy, but the Casco Bay Mariners from Portland, Maine, are going to the Toyota-USA Hockey National Championships.

Thanks to a double overtime goal from Celia Bagnia, off a feed from Emily Demers, Casco Bay upset Mid Fairfield 3-2 in the championship game of the New England District tournament on Sunday in Burlington, Vermont.

Not bad for a team that started its season 1-5-2.

The district tournament was a totally different result. Casco Bay went 4-0 just to get to the finals, outscoring the opposition 27-3 in the process.

In the finals, the Mariners were 1:15 away from winning in regulation when the Stars (46-7-1) tied it up to send the game to overtime. But Casco Bay (20-9-7), which had 12 different players score in the three-day tournament, persevered.

Mid Fairfield Stars Run the Table in Tier I

If the success of the Mid Fairfield (Conn.) Stars’ Tier I 19U team wasn’t enough at districts — they ran the table to qualify for nationals with a 21-1-1 overall record — the program’s Tier I 14U and 16U girls’ teams will be joining them.

The 14U team, with a 38-8-1 mark, went 4-0 at the New England District championships to sew up its own berth for nationals. Outscoring the opposition 20-7 in the four games, Mid Fairfield won 5-0 over the Rhode Island Sting in the finals at the Northford Ice Pavilion on Sunday in Northford, Connecticut.

The 16U team was just as dominant, also going 4-0 while allowing just two goals. It concluded tournament play with back-to-back 4-1 wins over the Connecticut Polar Bears to extend an unbeaten streak to nine games. Coach Moe Tarrant’s team improved to 23-3-1 with the victories.

Turning the Lights on

The Connecticut Northern Lights started the 2015-16 club season 5-8-1 and didn’t get over .500 until a 4-1 win back in late December. But now they’re in the midst of an 11-game unbeaten streak, which includes a district title.

The Northern Lights went 4-0-1 at districts to qualify for nationals, beating the Maine Gladiators 2-0 in the finals. The Northern Lights (15-8-4) outscored the opposition 24-7 in the three-day tournament.

Capital Gains

The Concord (N.H.) Capitals (30-7-3) outscored the field 23-7 during the March 18-20 tournament at Cairns Arena in Burlington en route to the title. In the championship game, the Capitals won 6-2 over the Maine Renegades. They beat the Renegades 5-1 in pool play.

Story from Red Line Editorial, Inc.

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