AUBURN —The Twin City Thunder had the second-place team in the USPHL’s National Collegiate Development Conference on the ropes for 55 minutes Saturday night.

The Boston Junior Bruins (30-6-2, 62 points) scored twice in the final five minutes, though, to notch a 5-4 victory over the Thunder at the Norway Savings Bank Arena.

“They are a team that can hurt you at any point at time,” Twin City coach Doug Friedman said. “Our goal was to play a near perfect game as we could. The certain amount of penalties we got, some were warranted, and I will say some were very, very questionable in my opinion. I have a lot of respect for those referees, but I disagree with a couple of those calls. At the end of the day we took too many penalties, I think they had three power play goals.”

The Bruins were 3-for-6 on the man advantage, while the Thunder went 2-for-6.

Yale commit Ian Carpentier had a goal and an assist for the Jr. Bruins, and Johhny Murela and Ryan Decker each added a goal and an assist.

Leading the charge offensively for the Thunder (21-15-1, 43 points) was John Kondub, who recorded a hat trick.

“He’s always in the mix of things. If he’s not on the score sheet, he’s causing something that happens with an assist or something like that,” Friedman said of Kondub. “He has been pretty consistent for us. He’s pretty crafty, I am glad to see him find the back of the net tonight.”

Kondub notched his first goal on the man advantage to give the Thunder a 1-0 lead while Nik Allain, another Yale commit, was in the box for the Jr. Bruins.

Kondub’s second goal also came on the power play after Christian Blomquist fed him in the slot to push the Thunder’s lead to 2-0 near the 11-minute mark of the opening period.

“Start of the game, we got out there quick, jumped on them, had a few power plays, and I had a few slick passes from my linemates, who gave me wide-open backdoor (passes),” Kondub said.

With Jeromey Rancourt in the box for the Thunder, the Jr. Bruins scored on the tail end of the power play, Frankie Ireland’s goal coming with 1:14 remaining in the first period.

Kondub completed the hat trick early in the second period, and the Thunder led 3-1.

After the goal, Blomquist was called for crosschecking and the Jr. Bruins went on the power play.

“It was just a crazy game, in general. There were so many penalties going both ways,” Kondub said. “The Bruins just got lucky bounces at the end.”

Carpentier scored just inside the right-circle as Thunder goalie Jaxon Friedman (34 saves) kicked out a rebound right to him right before the four-minute mark of the second period.

Mulera, a University of Connecticut commit, who had an assist on Carpentier’s goal, tied the game at 3-3 midway through the second by firing a shot that tickled through Friedman’s pads.

The Thunder’s had two chances to retake the lead late in the second, but their power play came up dry late.

Three-and-half minutes into the third period, Twin City’s Zachary Desmarais blasted a shot from the left-circle that beat Jr. Bruins goalie Jackson Bernard (36 saves) put the Thunder up 4-3.

With 4:40 remaining in the game Twin City’s Bradley Postula was called for holding, and 33 seconds into Boston’s power play, Ran Decker tipped in a Carpentier shot to tie the game 4-4.

Boston took the lead, its only one of the game, when Domenic Gazzo scored with 2:34 remaining in the contest.

The Thunder had two 5-minute major power plays in the third period, including one with less than two minutes remaining in the game, but they didn’t convert on either.

“(The power play) something we are going to be working a lot this week. I will give the Bruins credit, they adjusted their penalty kill a little bit, we made our adjustments, but our guys couldn’t execute it,” Doug Friedman said. “It’s simple enough, who doesn’t want to shoot on a power play? Apparently, us right now.”


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