LEWISTON — Scarborough goalie Peter O’Brien was making the first save all game, but Lewiston’s Kurtis Pelletier made sure he didn’t make a second in the second overtime of Saturday’s Class A boys hockey state championship.

The senior forward put home the rebound of Ryan Pomerleau’s initial shot, and just moments after O’Brien denied Pelletier with a kick save, to give the Blue Devils a 2-1 victory at a raucous Androscoggin Bank Colisee.

“I had no clue what was going to happen, I just tried to see if I could get it to the net as fast as I could,” Pelletier said. “Because every shot on net counts, you never know what’s going to happen, if it’s going to do a rebound, you never know.”

“Well, overtime — double overtime — we were just putting everything to the net,” Pomerleau said. “Anything can happen, and look what happened, we (expletive) won, right?”

The state title is the fourth in five years for Lewiston, and 24th overall.

“It just felt surreal,” Pelletier said. “It didn’t even feel real, it felt like I was in a fantasy. It was nuts.”

O’Brien stopped 40 of 42 shots in the game, including five in each overtime period, and 13 of 14 in the first period, when the Blue Devils (21-0) took a 1-0 lead.

“I thought he made the first save every time, and that’s really, coming in, we need him to make the first save,” Red Storm (15-5-1) coach Jake Brown said. “We know they shoot from everywhere.”

The Blue Devils fired at will in the opening period, and Pelletier’s goal from Pomerleau and Damon Bossie “put a bunch of hope in our team,” Pelletier said.

Scoring just once on 14 shots wasn’t ideal in head coach Jamie Belleau’s mind, but it was expected in a game of that magnitude.

Scarborough didn’t panic, Brown said, and after weathering the initial storm, the Red Storm gave the Blue Devils a push in the second period, thanks to getting the puck deep (according to Brown) and taking the walls away from Lewiston (according to Belleau). The shots were 6-2 in favor of Scarborough at one point — Pomerleau said the Red Storm “came out flying” — but finished 10-10 by the end of the period.

John Valente was the only one to put one of those shots in, and it tied the game with 1:40 left in the frame.

Brown said he thought his team played with “good energy” after Valente’s goal — which he believes was the junior’s first of his varsity career — and that it stretched into the third.

The Blue Devils “settled down” to start the third period, according to Belleau, and the game stayed a stalemate at the end of regulation.

“I’m really proud because it would have been easy for the kids to come out in the third, when they were facing some adversity, and really just give up. And they didn’t,” Belleau said. “I thought we played well in the third, but their goalie made some good saves.”

Lewiston goalie Keegan McLaughlin (25 saves) made one of the biggest saves of the game 1:02 into the second overtime, with an assist from senior defenseman Sam Laroche. McLaughlin stopped Sam Rumelhart on a counter-attack, then Laroche laid out to make sure the puck didn’t cross the line.

“I didn’t see much. I was just (focusing on) first shot, make that save and just hope for the best, and thank god I have real good defensemen,” McLaughlin said. “Unbelievable.”

“I just didn’t want it going in the net,” Laroche said. “I wasn’t losing. I wasn’t losing this game today.”

The play went to video review, where the no-goal call on the ice was upheld.

“I was thinking it’s going to be no goal right away,” Laroche said. “It didn’t cross that line.”

“I felt it right between pads,” McLaughlin said. “I knew.”

Brown said even his team knew the puck didn’t go in.

“I think that game, just there was times in overtime that we had a lot of chances, and then back and forth, and that’s just a good high school hockey game, and just didn’t go our way,” Brown said.


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