AUBURN — Puck luck wasn’t with the Twin City Thunder in Friday’s game.

They had multiple pucks slide by the posts, a couple hit the post, and a goal waived off in a 3-1 loss to the New Hampshire Junior Monarchs in a USPHL NCDC North Division game at Norway Savings Bank Arena.

“It was a well-played game. Sometimes you hit posts, and give that goalie credit — we haven’t seen him before,” Twin City Thunder coach Dan Hodge said of New Hampshire goalie Oliver Drum. “I thought we generated some offense, some good looks. It’s just one of those nights you can’t find a goal. I give credit to our guys for not giving up.”

Drum made 33 saves for the first-place Monarchs (21-12-5, 47 points), who got two goals from forward Jake McAlpine.

McAlpine has six goals and three assists in 13 games since joining New Hampshire after racking up 36 goals and 25 assists in 17 games this season for the Minnesota Squatch of the USPHL Premier League.

“He’s a goal-scorer, but he’s an energy guy,” New Hampshire coach Clint Edinger said. “He gets the guys going and he plays hard, he plays physical, and he’s exciting. He can shoot the puck.”


McAlpine’s first goal came when Thunder goalie Trey Miller (28 saves) kicked a rebound to him in the left circle and McAlpine’s backhander found the back of the net early in the first period.

Later in the opening period, Zander Lizotte, who is from Scarborough, threaded a pass to McAlpine at the Monarchs’ offensive blue line. McAlpine beat the Thunder defense and fired a wrist shot past Miller with about four minutes to play in the first.

“Zander is always making passes like that, and that’s why I like him as a player,” McAlpine said. “I know when I am taking off he can see me and hit me through those seams. It was perfect.”

Twin City (15-16-3, 33 points) appeared to score at the end of the first period on a power play, but the officials waived it off because a Thunder player played the puck with a high stick.

“He seemed pretty adamant about it,” Hodge said of the referee calling it a no-goal. “It is what it is. There’s no instant replay, right? You look at it and you kind of move on and see what the next shift brings.”

Neither team scored in the second period. In the third, the Thunder encountered more bad luck.


Twin City’s Nolan Leonard’s shot went a little wide of the net eight minutes into the period. With less than two minuts remaining, Dominic Chasse had a shot from the slot ring the post.

Shortly after, New Hampshire’s Maks Bukovec skated toward the unprotected Thunder goal and glided the puck into the net for an empty-net goal.

The Thunder broke Drumm’s shutout bid when Nick Pomerleau scored a power-play goal with 14 seconds remaining in the game.

“We have to find a way to score some goals 5-on-5,” Hodge said. “We got another power-play goal today with 14 seconds left, but it’s a power-play goal.”

The Thunder have scored a power-play goal in five of their seven games in January. They went 1 for 6 on the man advantage Friday. The Monarchs were 1 for 4.

Twin City welcomes the Junior Bruins (14-18-6, 34 points) on Tuesday to Norway Savings Bank Arena at 1:30 p.m. The Bruins are fifth in the North Division and Thunder are tied for sixth.

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