MILFORD — The door to the Notre Dame-Fairfield locker room at the Milford Ice Pavilion stayed closed for a long time after the Lancers’ 4-0 loss to Fairfield Prep Wednesday night. Coach Steve Hetherman had some things he needed to say to his team.

With a young team, any time you can get a teaching moment, you take it and that’s what Hetherman did, trying to get his players to understand what it takes to play hockey at the Division I state level.

“They’re still trying to process, rather than just ‘let’s go’ and so it’s tough,” Hetherman said. “but we try to use every game as a learning lesson.”

What the Lancers (1-3-1) learned was that they need to come out of the gates with electricity and athleticism — which was exactly what Prep did — as the Jesuits dominated the first period, taking a 2-0 lead.

“I thought the first period was the best period we played all year,” Prep coach Matt Sather said. “After that, we took a few too many penalties, but our goaltender (Jack McGee) kept us in it in the second and third (periods).”

Coming off a third-place finish in the prestigious Mount St. Charles in Rhode Island over the Christmas holidays, Fairfield Prep took control right from the opening face-off and needed just five minutes to grab the lead as Joe Mancini took a pass from Carter Kral and tapped the puck past ND-Fairfield goalie Billy Scovil.

The Jesuits (4-2) pushed the lead to 2-0 thanks to a power play goal with 1:22 left in the first. With Prep buzzing all around the net, Skyler Celotto took a feed from Cole Casl and beat Scovill.

“We came out aggressive, we were winning races. We’re not an overly skilled team, but we’re a fast team,” Sather said. “And if we’re winning races and getting ourselves in position to control the puck, we’re at our best.”

Kral made it 3-0 just two minutes into the second period with a blast from just inside the blue line and that a partially screened Scovil had no chance on.

“The shot he took was a great shot,” Sather said. “You don’t see that a lot in high school hockey where a kid can beat a goalie from that far away. Carter had a great game.”

Kevin Oricoli made it 4-0 with just under five minutes to play with a wrap-around goal which brought Scovill to the bench and brought Andrew Jones in to finish.

What also hurt the Lancers was a disappointing power play. ND-Fairfield had five opportunities with the extra man and each time came up empty.

“We had our opportunities but we’re just not bearing down at the right time,” Hetherman said. “We’re trying to tell the kids, ‘What did you learn from this game?’ because they have to start processing things and understand how they have to compete.”

celsberry@ctpost.com

FAIRFIELD PREP 4, ND-FAIRFIELD 0

FAIRFIELD PREP 2 1 1—4

ND-FAIRFIELD 0 0 0 —0

Records: Fairfield Prep 4-2, ND-Fairfield 1-3-1. Goals: FP— Joe Mancini, Skyler Celotto, Carter Kral, Kevin Oricoli. Assists: FP— Kral, Matt Kernaghan, Chris Brown 2, Cole Casl, Ryan Eckert, Celotto. Goalies: FP— Jack McGee (22 saves); ND—Bill Scovil (23 ), Andrew Jones (4). Shots: FP— 31; ND—22