Lewiston forward Joey Gendron (10) celebrates after sneaking the puck past Thonton Academy goalie Gage Tarbox-Belanger Saturday at the Androscoggin Bank Colisee in Lewiston. The Blue Devils won 4-2. RAM Sports photography

LEWISTON — Thornton Academy spent half of Saturday’s second period on the power play but couldn’t find a way to score an equalizer against Lewiston in a battle of the final two undefeated teams in Class A boys hockey. 

The Blue Devils’ penalty kill did its job, then the offense scored an insurance goal late in the second and Lewiston held the lead the rest of the way in a 4-2 victory at Androscoggin Bank Colisee. 

“It was huge. I mean, our penalty kill was pretty good,” Lewiston coach Jamie Belleau said. “But we can’t keep doing that. We got to be much more disciplined. You know, we were working hard.” 

An early Blue Devils (6-0) power play netted the game’s first goal, with Logan Tripp scoring off assists from Brock Bergeron and Owen Cox.

Lewiston didn’t find the back of the net during the rest of the five-minute man-advantage, which Thornton coach Michael Roux said was “huge,” but a Joey Gendron goal less than a minute after the power play was over “deflated us a little bit,” Roux added. 

The Golden Trojans (5-1) scored during their own five-minute power play, with Eli Pendergrass converting before the first period was over. 

The Blue Devils killed off the rest of the extended Thornton power play to start the second, then killed off two more minor penalties. When Lewiston did have 5-on-5 chances the offense came back to life, but Thornton goalie Gage Tarbox-Belanger made scoring difficult. 

Gendron finally found a way to get the puck past the goalie, redirecting Cox’s point shot in with 2:36 left in the frame. 

“Joey went to the net hard, he got his stick on the puck. That’s what we need Joey to do,” Belleau said. “But his two linemates, Evan (Knowlton) and Mason (Beaudoin), forechecked well. 

Thornton Academy’s Shane Bergeron and Lewiston’s Logan Tripp battle for the puck in front of Thornton’s bench on Saturday at the Colisee. RAM Sports photography

Lewiston sent 18 shots at Tarbox-Belanger in the third, but he turned all of them away to finish with 39 saves. 

“He has been unreal. He’s been the surprise of the year. He’s been awesome. He’s been our backbone of the team,” Roux said. “He keeps us in games, and that’s what we asked him to do, and he’s done a great job.” 

Thornton cut the deficit to 3-2 with 2:26 left when Liam Nash and Alex St. John set up Sawyer Wirsing. The Trojans then called a timeout before an offensive-zone faceoff with 1:17 remaining. Lewiston won the faceoff, Cox carried the puck into the neutral zone and Michael Belleau scored an empty-net goal from the blue line. 

“We went back and forth on whether to keep the goalie in or not, but I’d take Sawyer on a faceoff nine out of 10 times,” Roux said. “We didn’t get the one we needed.” 

Keegan McLauglin stopped 16 of 18 shots for Lewiston. 


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