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Fairfield Prep hockey beats ND-Fairfield

Updated 3:23 pm, Tuesday, February 19, 2013

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  • Notre Dame of Fairfield goalie Stone Denbok makes a save on Fairfield Prep's Kenny Kochiss during the first period of their hockey matchup at the Wonderland of Ice in Bridgeport on Monday, February 18, 2013. Photo: Brian A. Pounds / Connecticut Post
    Notre Dame of Fairfield goalie Stone Denbok makes a save on Fairfield Prep's Kenny Kochiss during the first period of their hockey matchup at the Wonderland of Ice in Bridgeport on Monday, February 18, 2013. Photo: Brian A. Pounds

 

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Although it looked a lot different, round 2 of Fairfield Prep vs. Notre Dame-Fairfield ended with the same hockey team on top.

The Jesuits built a two-goal third-period lead and held on, beating the Lancers 2-1 Monday at the Wonderland of Ice in Bridgeport.

Kevin Brown and Matt Wikman scored goals for Prep. Chris Gutierrez made 19 saves, earning his eighth win.

The Jesuits' active defense also blocked 12 shots, limiting ND to 20 shots on net.

"We blocked a lot of shots," Prep coach Matt Sather said. "We cleared out a lot of rebounds ... that's definitely our defense, but sort of a team defense, too."

ND defenseman Greg Ferris scored the Lancers' lone goal. ND goalie Stone Denbok made 30 saves, as the Lancers dropped their second straight, falling to 9-7.

"What you saw tonight was a good hockey game," ND coach Steve Hetherman said. "I'm proud of them ... I'm happy with the effort."

Prep improved to 17-0, beating ND for the second time this season. The Jesuits blitzed ND 7-2 at Milford Ice Pavilion on Dec. 20.

"They've made great strides," Sather said. "They were much more enthusiastic and energetic ... they were more disciplined, I thought."

The Lancers controlled play for much of the first period's first half. Yet, Brown broke the scoreless deadlock when he received a pass from Connor Henry and rifled a shot by Denbok, off the post and in, putting the Jesuits on the board at 7:41.

"I just found myself in the right spot and was able to bury it," Brown said.

Denbok's saves helped slow Prep's high-powered offense. The Ontario native helped thwart four Prep power plays, making his best save on Wikman late in the first.

"We put in a new system just for them," Hetherman said of his penalty killing

Denbok also stopped all 11 second-period shots he faced.

"Stone was terrific," Hetherman said.

But Wikman's goal early in the third lifted Prep's lead to 2-0. After Kenny Kochiss turned the puck over at Prep's blue-line, Sean Henry kept the puck in the zone, negating a ND two-on-one. Henry found Wikman at the top of the crease, and the junior forward beat Denbok.

"We always talk about making the play at the opponent's blue line, don't hang your head on a turnover, get right back," Sather said. "Defenseman steps back and creates another turnover, and we have the back door open. That's something we work on."

Ferris' power-play goal at 10:19 cut Prep's lead in half. The junior defender fielded a stellar cross-ice pass from Christian LaCroix and beat Gutierrez over the blocker.

Ferris' was the Jesuits' first goal surrendered since Feb. 6, and only the second they've allowed in February.

Prep's defense, and Gutierrez, kept ND from tying it late. Gutierrez's pad stop on Sal Sereno with 30 seconds left preserved Prep's win.

"(Gutierrez) played great," Brown said. "You can't find a better `tender out there ... He made a ton of great saves out there."

ppickens@bcnnew.com; twitter.com/Pat_Pickens

ND-FAIRFIELD 0 0 1 -- 1

FAIRFIELD PREP 1 0 1 -- 2

Records: ND 9-7; Prep 17-0; Goals: ND-- Greg Ferris; Prep-- Kevin Brown, Matt Wikman; Assists: ND--

Christian LaCroix; Prep-- Connor Henry, Sean Henry, David White, Kenny Kochiss; Goalies: ND-- Stone

Denbok (32 saves); Prep-- Chris Gutierrez (19 saves); Shots: FP 34, ND 20.

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