Nick Boyagian and Ryan Naumovski each scored a goal and had a multi-point game in a Titans 4-1 victory over the Northeast Generals at the Middletown Sports Complex on Friday night.
Recording a goal and two assists, Boyagian now has 18 points in 17 games. Naumovski, who was placed on a line with Boyagian, notched a goal and an assist to give him 12 points in 19 games. Head coach Craig Doremus noted how well the two worked together and moved the puck, leading to their multi-point nights.
“I expect (Boyagian) to only get better, and truth be told, I think the bar is set high for him and we want to push him to that,” Doremus said. “Ryan is coming into his own as a junior hockey player and I’m so happy for him because he’s done so many things well aside from being an offensive threat.”
It was the first home game in over a month for the Titans, who have now improved their record to 11-7-2. Matt Ladd made 20 saves on 21 shots, earning himself his fifth win of the season.
The Titans opened the scoring 8:29 into the first period when Naumovski slid a pass to Boyagian in the low slot, as he beat Generals goaltender Marko Sturma to give New Jersey a 1-0 lead.
“I don’t even know how (Naumovski) got it to me, but luckily I saw the five-hole open up and I just slid it right through,” Boyagian said of his goal.
Wade Novak extended the lead at 17:38 when Kyle Jeffers set him up for a one-timer in the low slot, earning his fifth goal of the season. Boyagian picked up the secondary assist, giving him two points in the first period.
The Titans would go on to score two goals in a span of 2:12 in the second period. At 16:28 of the period, Andrew Husted wired a wrist shot from the slot past Sturma on the high-blocker side. Then at 18:40, Eric Manoukian made an outlet pass to Boyagian, who nudged it to Naumovski for a breakaway, as he tucked a shot under the crossbar glove-side to give New Jersey a 4-0 lead.
Mike Egan scored at 5:49 of the third period to put the Generals on the board, but Ladd was perfect for the remainder of the period as the Titans were able to snap a two-game losing skid as well as earning their fourth win against the Generals in seven matchups.
After the game, Doremus praised the overall team effort, but acknowledged the work put in by Husted after he scored his sixth of the season.
“Andrew Husted still does not get enough respect or credit for who he is and what he is to our hockey club. As he goes, our team goes,” Doremus said. “He provides us so much on and off the ice and he’s going to make some college coach extremely happy for the next four years. I just can’t wait for the right opportunity to come along for Andrew because he is the glue to our team right now.”
The Generals lost one of their better forwards and former Titan Matt Wiesner, as he got a five minute major and a game misconduct for facemasking in a third-period scrum. Northeast has now lost its second straight game and now have a record of 15-11-0.
The two teams will face off again on Saturday night at 7 p.m. The Titans will offer free admission for all Middletown residents plus a skating session with the team following the game. For those that can’t make it, all of the action will be streamed on hockeytv.com.