LEWISON — The penalty kill was the strength for the Lewiston girls hockey team Monday night, but it almost let Cheverus/Old Orchard Beach/Kennebunk/Windham back into the game too.

The Blue Devils killed off four penalties in a 2-1 victory over the Stags at The Colisee.

When Lewiston was on the PK, it played some of its best hockey of the night.

“As odd as it is, being on the penalty kill gave us some advantage,” Lewiston coach Ron Dumont said. “We seemed to be controlling the puck and it gave us a boost.”

Stags (7-2-1) coach Scott Rousseau said it was a good learning experience for his girls going up against Lewiston (8-1).

“We haven’t been tested much the last couple of weeks,” Rousseau said. “Tonight is the kind of game that we will get better because we were punished for our mistakes tonight.”

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Late in the first period, after Lewiston defender Lilly Gish got out of the penalty box for cross-checking, Blue Devils forward Leah Landry stole the puck in the offensive zone, split the Stags defense, and shot the puck over Stags goalie Ella Lemieux’s glove for a 1-0 Lewiston lead.

“I felt a lot of pressure from the sides and I was trying to get (the puck) in front of me as much as I could to keep the puck away from them,” Landry said. “I was just trying to get a quick shot as soon as I could.”

Dumont thought it was highlight-worthy.

“I was kidding with her, ‘I want to rush home after (the game) and I want to see this on (ESPN), it has to be in the (Sportscenter Top Ten) highlights.'”

Rousseau said the Landry goal was one of the errors the Stags made.

“We made one mistake in the first period and Leah Landry capitalized,” Rousseau said. “We got a bad bounce, but we were there for the whole game long.”

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The second period saw Lewiston take another penalty two minutes in, but the Stags couldn’t get very much offense going.

The Blue Devils stretched the lead to 2-0 when a Gish shot from the right circle beat Lemieux at the 6:18 mark.

Leah Dube nearly made it a three-goal lead when she replaced Sadie Morgan coming out of the penalty box as she picked up the loose puck in the neutral zone. Dube skated into the offensive zone and shot the puck into Lemieux (20 saves). The puck almost crossed the goal line as Dube tried to jam it in on a second opportunity.

“Dube slid right in like she was supposed to. She was a little discouraged she missed it,” Dumont said. “It caught in (Lemieux’s jersey) or something, but it happens. Like I tell the kids a lot, just getting the opportunities — everybody wants to finish — but if you are getting the opportunities, sooner or later you will get your (goals).”

Lewiston’s penalty kill remained strong in the third period when on the Stags’ fourth power play, Lewiston kept the puck in its offensive zone in the final minute.

While the Stags didn’t score then, Mikayla Talbot ripped a shot inside the post past Lewiston goalie Kim McLaughlin (nine saves) to get the Stags on the board nearly eight and half minutes into the period.

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“It gave us a big boost of confidence,” Rousseau said. “Our young team is a little unsure of the stage tonight. I feel like they are walking out, ‘Yeah, we belong on this stage.’ The lights weren’t too bright at the end.”

The Stags took advantage of a tired Blue Devils team from killing all those penalties in the game.

“It wears you down; you could see that in third,” Dumont said. “Those last seven, eight minutes were dragging a little bit; that’s where we got in a little bit of trouble. But, hey, that’s my fault. I need to condition them a little more, I told them. This one is on (me); I got to make them skate more.”

Lucy Johnson had a chance in the final minute for the Stags, but the shot went wide of the net.


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