Knights Drop Regular Season Finale, Hope for Playoffs

On Jan. 28, the FHN varsity ice hockey team took on FHHS for their final regular season game. The Knights entered the game with one win, 17 losses and 2 ties while FHHS entered with a 12-4-3 record. The two teams had faced off twice this year, once at Gold Cup, which ended in a 5-5 tie, and again on Jan. 11, in which the Vikings won 9-3. The Knights fought hard, but the Vikings came out on top 7-6 thanks to a go-ahead goal by junior Eli Cooper.

“We were pretty mad about how the season went and how bad our last couple games went,” said junior forward Bryce Longmore. “We were trying to get the win against a team we felt we could compete against.”

There were a couple of standout performances from the Knights, such as senior forward Brendan Johnston’s two goals and junior forward/defender Tuomas Hyypia who scored once after a head injury that took him off the ice for a short bit. The biggest moment on the ice was the hat trick by junior forward Bryce Longmore. Longmore scored his third goal with just under six minutes left to play in the second period.

“After our last game [a 13-2 loss to Timberland], I was really mad,” Longmore said. “So for this game, I just felt like going out there and giving it my all, going 100 percent the whole game and putting the puck in the net.”

Overall, the Knights played well. They started off with a 2-1 lead after the first period, but the Vikings were able to come back to tie it up by the end of the second period.

The Knights did have a good position to win with a goal from Brendan Johnston to give them a 6-5 lead with 5:51 left in the third period, but the Vikings were able to come back by scoring 2 goals in the final three and a half minutes. The downfall for the team was their inability to convert on power plays, going just one for six while the Vikings converted on their only opportunity. If they can improve their power play strategy, they should do well in the Founders Cup.

“It [the loss] will help us focus on the mistakes we made,” sophomore defender Drake Johnston said, “and it also shows that we can play with a team as good as FHHS as long as we all put in the effort. We’re going to take the momentum from this game into the playoffs.”