Twin City Thunder forward Tristan Rand shoots the puck by Boston Advantage goalie Nicholas Bevilacqua in Wednesday’s game at Norway Savings Bank Arena in Auburn. The Thunder won 3-2 in overtime. RAM Sport Photography

AUBURN — The Twin City Thunder are finding ways to win.

Defenseman Cullen McCormick’s point shot in overtime gave the Thunder a 3-2 victory over the Boston Advantage in a USPHL NCDC contest at Norway Savings Bank Arena on Wednesday.

“We have so many good players on our team and so many good shooters out there, I was fortunate to be out there and in a good position,” McCormick said. “I put it away, and like I said, there are multiple guys on our team. You put them out there, they will make the same shot.

Twin City (24-20-4, 52 points) went on a five-minute power play after Boston’s Luke Panchisin went to the box for a major late in the third period. The Thunder had looks on the power play at the end of regulation and early in the overtime but couldn’t put the puck home.

Thunder coach Dan Hodge didn’t realize the Thunder were going on the power play at first.

“(Assistant coach) Cam (Robichaud) said he hit (our player) in the head with a stick. I said, ‘What?'” Hodge said. “I heard the helmet, I heard the plastic and I didn’t know what happened. Obviously, you look over and see him standing in the corner. I think he knew he was out of the game.”


McCormick got the power-play goal when his blast from the point snuck by Advantage goalie (37 saves) Nicholas Bevilacqua, rang the crossbar and deflected into the goal past the three-minute mark of the overtime session.

“When I let it go, it felt pretty good, and I took a quick look up and I saw a guy right in front of me, so I was trying to put it far side because the goalie was sliding over,” McCormick said. “Fortunately, I got a good bounce in my favor.”

Tristan Rand and Kadsen Johnson provided assists on the goal.

Twin City Thunder center Patrick Last and Boston Advantage defenseman Conor Lally battle for the puck in Wednesday’s game at Norway Savings Bank Arena in Auburn. The Thunder won 3-2 in overtime. RAM Sport Photography

Rand broke the ice on a 2-on-1 late in the second period. A Boston defender lost his balance at his blue line and Thunder forward Nolan Leonard then made a dish to Rand in the slot, who roofed the puck to the back of the cage.

“I was waiting for him to give me the pass and the goalie went over to him. I had a pretty easy tap-in,” Rand said.

The duo converted on nearly the exact same play with about two minutes remaining in the second period. Rand batted in Leonard’s cross-ice saucer pass for a 2-0 lead.


“I was trying to get my stick on it,” Rand said. “(Leonard) was doing all the work. Both times he was the one that got the puck and working all the way down the ice. I was just trying to finish it for him.”

Advantage coach Dan Szerlip felt the Thunder got away with a couple of penalties on each goal.

“I think the refs missed a trip right before that on a Grade-A opportunity on (Conor) Lally,” Szerlip said of the first goal. “It’s kind of frustrating they came back and they put it away in the net. I thought the second one was played with a high stick. If we had the reffing on our side, it might be a different case.”

Boston started to chip away at the deficit midway through the third period when Dominic Vansaghi found Jacob Bigras in the left circle. Bigras put a one-timer past Thunder goalie Trey Miller (32 saves).

Ethan Beaumont tied the game when he skated to the net with under five minutes to play. The puck crossed the goal line prior to Beaumont crashing into the goal.

“There was no quit from our group,” Szerlip said. “It’s been like that all year. I told them we have come back from one or two goals a dozen times this year. … At the end of the day, we need to put the team above ourselves.”


The game was a preview of a play-in game next Wednesday at 12:30 p.m. at Norway Savings Bank Arena between the two teams for the fourth and final playoff spot in the North Division.

The Advantage (20-13-4, 44 points) had their record frozen from late January until last Friday because ownership broke league rules. The league, not wanting to penalize the players, came up with the idea of a play-in game.

Hodge said he didn’t coach Wednesday’s game any differently to prepare for the play-in contest.

“We will watch video to make sure we are ready,” Hodge said. “It was a good game to see where we were. Last time we played them, they beat us here.”


Miller committed to the State University of New York at Canton for next season. The 20-year-old has a 13-10-1 record with a 2.61 goals-against-average and a .926 save percentage. The Kangaroos, an independent NCAA Division III program, went 12-13 this season.

Christopher Jackson, the other Thunder goalie, committed to Suffolk University last week. The 20-year-old has an 11-10 record with a 2.74 GAA and a .920 save percentage this season. The Rams finished eighth in the Commonwealth Coast Conference with a 6-17-2 record.

The Thunder announced the tender signing of 2004-born forward Christian Day from the New Hampton School in Hampton, New Hampshire, for the 2023-24 season on Tuesday. He had 21 goals and 29 assists this season in 35 contests.

Related Headlines

Comments are not available on this story.