The New Jersey Titans scored four, second period goals in 5:13 minutes en route to a 6 – 2 win over the visiting Northeast Generals for the team’s fifth consecutive win.
Defenseman Ole Andersen and forward Shane Haviland each had a goal and an assist.
After a scoreless opening period, Northeast got on the scoreboard first just 1:23 into the middle stanza. The Generals’ Gerard Marretta picked up the loose puck in his own zone along the near side boards and sent a long stretch pass across to a breaking Ryan Kuzmich. After gaining the line, Kuzmich took a shot from the faceoff dot that was saved by Titans goalie Patrick Pugliese but the deep rebound came right out to Charlie Ried in the slot and Ried one-timed it past the fallen Pugliese to give Northeast a 1 – 0 lead.
The Titans then countered by scoring four, unanswered goals in 5:13 minutes.
At 6:58 of the second Tyler Nasca tied the game at one. Haviland picked up the loose puck in his own zone at the high slot and passed it to Nasca on his right. As Nasca reached center ice, he passed the puck to Nick DeSantis on his right. After entering the offensive zone along the near side boards, DeSantis circled around his defender and centered the puck out front to Nasca in the slot and the Wheatfield, NY native one-timed it past Northeast’s goalie Connor Bradford for his eighth goal of the season.
Thirty-four seconds later the Titans doubled their lead on Kyle Jeffers twenty-first goal of the season. Kyler Head intercepted a Generals pass at the top of the slot in his own zone and he skated to the near side boards and entered the offensive zone on a 2 on 2 rush with Cam Gendron. As Head gained the line, he drop pass the puck to Jeffers. As the American International College commit reached the faceoff dot, he took a shot that beat Bradford short side to make it 2 – 1 Titans.
Andersen gave the Titans a 3 – 1 lead at 8:51 of the second. After Pugliese made a save on Northeast’s Clark Kerner, the rebound came out to Cade Penney at the near side faceoff dot and he passed the puck up and over to Michael Outzen at the top of his own zone. As Outzen entered the Generals’ zone on a 3 – 2 rush, he stopped and reversed at the top of the far side faceoff circle and he sent a long, cross-ice pass to Andersen who took a snapshot that beat Bradford long side for his sixth goal of the season.
The Titans scored their fourth straight goal with 7:51 remaining in the period. Penney picked up the rebound at his own goal line to the left of Pugliese and he passed it up to Jeffers at the bottom of the far side faceoff circle. Jeffers made a long stretch pass up to Mitch Machlitt at the top of the Generals blueline. After gaining the line, Machlitt reversed at the top of the far side faceoff circle and made a backhand pass to Andersen in the slot. Andersen immediately passed it back to Gavin Gulash who went from his forehand to his backhand and he lifted the puck up high and past Bradford for his tenth goal of the season.
Bradford was replaced by Joey Stanizzi.
Kuzmich cut the Generals deficit in half with 5:03 left in the second. With a delayed penalty being called on the Titans, Northeast’s Cam Gaudette made a long stretch pass from the top of his own far side faceoff circle to Jonathan Young at the Titans blueline. As Young reached the faceoff dot, he reversed and made a centering pass to Kuzmich in the slot and Kuzmich one-timed it past Pugliese for his first goal of the season.
Haviland made it 5 – 2 just 1:08 into the third period. DeSantis picked up the loose puck at the top of his own near side faceoff circle and passed it over to Penney on his right. Penney found a breaking Haviland at center ice. As Haviland gained the line, he cut towards the near side boards and went around his defender towards the end boards. Haviland circled around the Generals net and wrapped the puck around and into the net past Stanizzi for his sixth goal of the season.
Head lit the lamp for his sixteenth goal of the season with 2:14 left in the game to close out the scoring.
Pugliese stopped 32 of 34 shots while Bradford and Stanizzi combined to stop 25 of 31. Click here for the box score.
The two teams will meet again tonight at 7:00pm at the Middletown Sports Complex. It’s Bogo and Skate night. First, anyone who brings their significant other can get one ticket for free if they purchase an adult ticket. Then it’s Skate Night with the Titans immediately following the game for all fans.