It was a dramatic scene at Thayer rink Wednesday night, with fans for both the Bishop Hendricken Hawks and the La Salle Rams out in full force for the 2022 Ed Walsh Cup. The Hendricken vs La Salle rivalry is a historic one with many great battles over the years. Although the rivalry runs deep, it is evident that both sides have a great amount of respect for each other. Pregame, Hendricken Head Coach Michael Soscia spoke on the classic rivalry.
“We’re all friends off the ice, but when the puck drops, all bets are off. It’s a great match, Coach Tingley runs a great program. It’s just a fun environment, it should be a packed house tonight, so it’s great for the kids, it’s great for high school hockey, this is one of the reasons why people stay and play Rhode Island hockey,” said Soscia
Shawn Tingley, Head Coach of La Salle, also spoke on the gravity of the game.
“It’s a long, storied rivalry, it’s two of the big Catholic schools in Rhode Island, some of the best hockey teams in Rhode Island have been at La Salle and Hendricken and they’re [Hendricken] really well-coached. Our kids couldn’t be more excited for this opportunity. We expect a fierce rivalry tonight, a fast-paced game, they’ve [Hendricken] got a lot of talent on that roster and they’re the two-time defending State Champions for a reason, so we expect a war tonight and we’re excited for the challenge,” said Tingley
And what a war it was, with both teams coming out playing fast and physical hockey. Hendricken got the upper hand early, with a goal in the first period by senior Nick Regine, assisted by junior William Cavanagh and sophomore Aiden Ferriera at the beginning of the first period. The Hawks would score again four minutes later, this time it was off the stick of senior Hayden Corrente, he was assisted by juniors Griffin Crain and Devin Exter.
The Hawks would go into the second period up 2-0, and they would keep it that way until later in the period, with a longshot powerplay goal by La Salle’s senior defenseman Marc Frateschi cutting into the Hendricken lead, assisted by fellow sophomore defenseman Marcello Martinelli. The goal by Frateschi was impressive not only because of the distance from which he shot, but also because of Hendricken’s usually sturdy penalty kill.
The scoring would cease until the third period, where La Salle sophomore forward Evan Barbosa would hit an important wrist shot to the left side of the net, tying the game 2-2, he had some help from seniors Vincent Healey and Jordan Mclntyre. The Hawks and Rams would battle back and forth to no avail for the remainder of the third period, forcing the game into overtime.
In overtime, it seemed like no one would get the upper hand, until Hendricken would take a timeout that would prove to be integral to the outcome of the game. During the timeout, Coach Soscia appeared to be drawing up a certain play to give the Hawks an opportunity to score. At first, the Hawks appeared to get very close to executing the play, with a shot on goal off a faceoff in their offensive zone, but a great save by La Salle’s goalie Caleb Jawharjian would foil Hendricken’s plan… for the time being.
The two teams would go up and down the ice until the time came again in the Hawk’s offensive zone to run the play that previously failed. With 17 seconds left in overtime, sophomore center Aiden Ferriera would win the faceoff and pass the puck to Nick Regine, who would hit the game winner, triggering the Hendricken bench to storm onto the ice in celebration. Yet another chapter in the Hendricken vs La Salle saga has been written, with this newest installation likely being one of the more electric ones.
Now at 4-0, the Hawks will hope to keep their undefeated season going, facing Pilgrim this coming Friday. As for La Salle, they will hope to bounce back from their second loss of the season, and they will also have a game Friday, facing the 1-3 Moses Brown Quakers. With Hendricken and La Salle combining for 58 total shots on goal in their matchup (Hendricken with 27 and La Salle with 31), both teams will be forces to be reckoned with going forward into the season.
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