The ink has dried — even if the ice still hasn’t — and another chapter finished in the long and storied boys’ hockey rivalry between Lewiston and St. Dominic Academy. The latest chapter saw the Blue Devils finish off a three-game season sweep while simultaneously ending a three-game losing streak to the Saints in the playoffs. With a 5-1 victory in the North regional final Tuesday night, featuring three goals in a three-minute span early in the third period, Lewiston will now play for the Class A state championship on Saturday. Here are five things we learned about the Blue Devils last night:

1. Lewiston likes to shoot

The Blue Devils sent seven shots on net before the Saints completed their first more than halfway through the first period. Lewiston had double-digit shots on goal in each period and finished with 42. Only two went in through two periods, but the aforementioned three-in-three-minutes spree helped the Blue Devils’ conversion rate. The multitude of scoring chances followed a season-long trend for Lewiston, which totaled more than 600 shots in 18 regular-season games.

2. The crease got crowded

One reason so few of the numerous Lewiston shots went in during the first two periods? They came from far out, and St. Dom’s goalie Kyle Welsh saw them cleanly. Lewiston coach Jamie Belleau lamented all season he cared more about the quality of shots, rather than the quantity. Belleau longed all season for his players to crash the net. They did just that Tuesday night, with four of the five goals involving some semblance of traffic. Rebounds and re-directs replaced the highlight-reel goal that Lewiston relied on at times during the season.

3. The kids are alright


Those five goals scored by the Blue Devils on Tuesday night — all scored by underclassmen. Freshman Sam Frechette scored the first one and the first of the third period. Sophomores Joe Bisson, Alex Rivet and Dustin Larochelle rounded out the scoring. All four players scored at least six goals during the regular season, so Tuesday’s performance wasn’t an outlier. Yet, it was a bigger stage than most underclassmen are used to: State final berth on the line, playing against the archrival in a packed 3,000-seat arena with all the pressure on their own side. Belleau said throughout the season he — and the rest of the team — had complete confidence in the underclassmen. That confidence was justified in the regional final.

4. Don’t forget the defense

For all the fanfare that the Blue Devils’ offense receives (the unit did combine to score 11 goals in its first two playoff games), the Lewiston defense has been just as good all season. The Blue Devils allowed 30 goals in 18 games during the regular season, including three shutouts and eight games giving up one goal. The defensive corps featured some experience, with seniors Jon Sturgis and Brady Cusson and juniors Sam Story, Cole Ouellette and Brad McLellan. The Blue Devils’ blue-liners held St. Dom’s to 13 shots Tuesday night, and Bangor had just nine shots and one goal through two periods in last Saturday’s regional semifinal.

5. It’s good to be home

Androscoggin Bank Colisee was born as St. Dominic Arena, but Lewiston is now the lone high school boys’ team to call it home. The Blue Devils have looked at home inside the Barn on Birch Street this season, sporting a 10-0-1 record including playoffs. The large capacity and bright lights are something the Lewiston players are used to, and they will have the luxury of skating on their home ice yet again in the state championship game. That lone non-win this year? That came against South regional champion Scarborough, in a 4-4 tie late in the regular season that saw the Blue Devils rally back from a 3-1 deficit before the Red Storm tied the game with six seconds left in regulation.

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