'Cats avenge `loss' to T'hawks.


Byline: John McGuirk

WESTBORO - If you thought the Gardner High hockey team had gotten past its disappointing shootout loss to Algonquin on Dec. 27 in the Gardner Holiday Tournament final, think again.

Although standings say that tilt is considered a tie because it was a tournament game, someone had to walk off with the championship plaque and that was Algonquin.

Last night, the two Roy Conference combatants met again, and Gardner let it be known early and often that it was going to exact some revenge. The Wildcats did so in the form of a 5-2 victory at North Star Youth Forum.

"Tonight we came in flying," said coach Jean-Guy Gagnon said, whose Wildcats improved to 5-0-3, 4-0-2 in the conference. "Offensively we could do better, but defensively we were solid. We talked about our last meeting with them. Even though it didn't show up as a loss (in the standings), but because it was a tournament (Algonquin) gave us a loss, and a loss is a loss.

"Algonquin is a team that always plays us tough," Gagnon added. "But I look at our team, and every game we've played we have improved. We're out there working hard from the first second we step on the ice up until when the final buzzer goes off."

Algonquin (5-4-1, 2-3-0) was without one of its premier players in junior Justin Logan, who is recovering from a separated shoulder.

From the start, the Wildcats played an up-tempo style at both ends of the ice, continuously dictating the flow. Gardner, which outshot Algonquin, 14-1, in the first 15 minutes and 28-10 for the game, had the Tomahawks chasing them all over the ice, and they always seemed to be one step behind.

Senior left wing Damian Blodgett put the Wildcats 4:27 into the game after redirecting a rebound off the pads of Algonquin goalie Alex Keegan (23 saves) from the left side.

Just 46 seconds later, there was a scramble in front of Keegan, who stopped the first shot, but was unable to secure the puck.

Left wing Tyler Robinson gained...

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