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A dominant decade done for Hanover girls hockey

  • Concord High's Jaelyn Kelleher (20) is congratulated by teammate Katerine Ripel after scoring Tuesday to put the Crimson Tide up, 4-0, on Hanover in the NHIAA teams' semifinal playoff game at Everett Arena. Marauders Kali McDonnell (6), Rebekah Rudd (1) and Danielle Rudd (10) can only watch. (Valley News - Tris Wykes)

  • Hanover High's Sage McGinley-Smith reacts Tuesday in the immediate aftermath of her team's 4-3 loss to Concord in the NHIAA semifinals at Concord's Everett Arena. The Marauders will fail to defend their state title for the first time in 10 years. (Tris Wykes - Valley News) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com. » Buy this Image —Tris Wykes

  • Hanover High girls ice hockey assistant Tucker Garrity-Hanchett offers solace to senior Meredith Morhun following the fourth-seeded Marauders' 4-3 loss to top-seeded Concord on Tuesday at Everett Arena. Hanover fell in the NHIAA semifinals, ending a 10-year run as state champions. (Tris Wykes - Valley News) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com. » Buy this Image —Tris Wykes

  • Hanover High junior Natalie Morhun carefully tapes her stick blade Tuesday before the fourth-seeded Marauders tackled top-seeded Concord in the NHIAA semifinals at Everett Arena. Hanover lost, 4-3, ending a 10-year run as state champions. (Tris Wykes - Valley News) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com. » Buy this Image —Tris Wykes

  • Hanover High's Danielle Rudd (10) is pursued up the wall by Concord's Joanna Dustin (4) and Emma LaRiviere on Tuesday at Everett Arena. The Crimson Tide's 4-3 victory in the NHIAA semifinals ended the Marauders' 10-year reign as state champions. (Tris Wykes - Valley News) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com. » Buy this Image —Tris Wykes

  • Hanover High girls hockey coach John Dodds speaks to his team during a third-period time out Tuesday at Everett Arena. The fourth-seeded Marauders lost to top-seeded Concord, 4-3, snapping Hanover's 10-year run as NHIAA state champions. (Tris Wykes - Valley News) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com. » Buy this Image —Tris Wykes

  • Hanover High's Kaye Lindsay holds off Concord's Emma LaRiviere during Tuesday's NHIAA semifinals at Everett Arena. The fourth-seeded Marauders lost to the top-seeded Crimson Tide, 4-3, ending their run of 10 consecutive state titles. (Tris Wykes - Valley News) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com. » Buy this Image —Tris Wykes

  • Hanover High's Kali McDonnell, right, is consoled by Danielle Rudd after Tuesday's NHIAA semifinal loss to Concord at Everett Arena. The 4-3 setback ended the fourth-seeded Marauders' 10-year reign as state champions and sent top-seeded Concord on to the finals. (Tris Wykes - Valley News) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com. » Buy this Image —Tris Wykes

  • The puck lies next to the right foot of Concord High's Joanna Dustin, right, while Hanover's Meredith Morhun (2) works to move the Crimson Tide forward out of the crease. Goaltender Rebekah Rudd and defenseman Kali McDonnell are at left. Concord won the NHIAA semifinal, 4-3, on Tuesday at Everett Arena, ending Hanover's 10-year run as state champion. (Tris Wykes - Valley News) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com. » Buy this Image —Tris Wykes

Valley News Staff Writer
Published: 3/10/2020 10:32:35 PM
Modified: 3/10/2020 10:32:25 PM

CONCORD — Tears continued to flow in the Hanover High girls hockey locker room at Everett Arena on Tuesday, 15 minutes after the fourth-seeded Marauders’ 4-3 NHIAA Division I semifinal loss to top-seeded Concord. The emotion was understandable, for the result snapped Hanover’s 10-year reign as state champion.

“We got beat by a better team,” said Marauders coach John Dodds, whose squad finished the season 12-5-2, with part of its schedule played against out-of-state foes. “Everybody has such high expectations because it’s Hanover and what we’ve done in the past, but this was a new team.

“At the beginning of the year, I don’t think you could expect we’d win the state tournament with all the new players and where we were.”

A scoreless first period gave way to a disastrous second frame for Hanover, which was outshot, 15-3, in the middle stanza and surrendered three goals during a four-minute span. That’s more than the Marauders surrendered in 11 different games this season.

Concord’s first tally came with six minutes remaining in the second period. A failed clearing attempt up the right sidewall led to Joanna Dustin’s quick pass out front to an unguarded Maria Armaganian. She beat goaltender Rebekah Rudd on the glove side at the near post.

The Crimson Tide (18-2-0) doubled its lead two minutes later. Amy Cohen easily passed across the slot from right to left to an open Emma LaRiviere, who shot past Rudd and into the net’s gaping left side. Concord held a 16-4 shot advantage at this point.

The hosts went up, 3-0, with Hanover’s Kali McDonnell in the penalty box for hooking. Diminutive Jaelyn Kelleher, a junior who appeared generously listed at 5-feet-1, threw a long shot at Rudd from the right wall, the puck striking the netminder and going in at the near post.

The Crimson Tide is “quick on the puck, and sometimes we got caught puck-watching,” Dodds said. “We weren’t reacting and our heads weren’t on a swivel and, next thing you know, someone’s uncovered.

“Concord’s very aggressive, with their defense coming into the (offensive) zone. The first game, we took advantage of that with a couple of breakaways, but today we weren’t able to make them pay.”

Hanover started the third period down, 21-6, in shots. The situation became worse when Kelleher roared up the left wing, turned the corner on defender Danielle Rudd and fired the puck along the ice and through Rebekah Rudd’s pads.

What would become the winning strike was Concord’s first shot of the period. It came shorthanded and with fewer than two minutes elapsed.

Hanover rallied when Christina Chow put in the rebound of her own long shot from the right wing with nine minutes remaining. There were three minutes to go when the visitors pulled within 4-2 on Mackenzie Liu’s rush on net from the right side.

The contest’s final tally came 47 seconds later when Sage McGinley-Smith walked in from atop the left circle and unleashed a successful backhand shot.

“I think they just made up their minds they were going to do something,” Dodds said of his players’ late explosion. “I almost felt like once we got one goal, everything opened up, but it was too little, too late.

“I’m awful proud of them. That’s a good group of kids who have come such a long way this year.”

Only when prodded did Dodds address a subject that clearly sticks in his craw. How, when the NHIAA requires neutral sites for semifinal and final contests, did Concord get to play such a game on its home ice?

“I don’t feel good about it, and it’s certainly not fair,” said the 15th-year coach. “There were about five of their fans for every one of ours. I realize it’s hard to find a neutral site, but this is anything but that.”

Notes: Concord finished with a 24-13 shot advantage. … Hanover will lose seniors Chow, Meredith Morhun, Pepper Joseph and Georgia Flynn. … The Marauders, who lost seven seniors after last season, entered the game having won 11 of the 12 NHIAA titles since girls hockey established a formalized postseason in the state. … Hanover played with seven players in their first varsity season this winter. … Concord reached its first state title game since 2008. … Marauders assistant Tessa Hill, who played for the team as a teenager, flew back to New Hampshire from California on Tuesday and was working on an hour’s sleep when the first puck dropped.

Tris Wykes can be reached at twykes@vnews.com.




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