Generals sweep Norwich, march to Fraser Cup Playoffs

Published on Mar 19, 2024 via

The Generals swept the Norwich Sea Captains in the East Division Finals, advancing to the Fraser Cup Playoffs as the East Division winners. The Gens defeated Norwich at home on Thursday, March 14, 5-2, before finishing the series on the road on Friday, March 15, winning 5-2 once more. 

The Gens started strong in game one at the New England Sports Village, with forward Sean Gorman starting off the high scoring series for boys in blue and orange. Gorman’s goal came nine and a half minutes into the game, giving the Gens a 1-0 lead after the first. Forward Matt Nuzzolilo then took over in the second period, scoring back to back goals in the second period, nine and 14 minutes into the period, to make it 3-0 after two. Norwich finally responded early in the third to make it 3-1, before forward Levente Pakozdi and Defenseman Tommy Lubin broke the game open, scoring 11:40 and 12 and a half minutes into the third to make it 5-1. Norwich found the net in the last second of the game, finishing the game at a 5-2 score in favor of Northeast.  

Goaltender Danny Antal got the first start of the series in net for the Gens, standing tall with 25 saves on 27 shots in the win. Nuzzolilo led the team in points with three, gaining an assist to go with his two goals. Defenseman Owen Locke sat behind him with two assists in game one.

Friday evening saw the Generals travel to the RoseGarden Ice Arena for game two, with Defenseman Brandon Hemmer getting an instant jump on the opposition, scoring only 36 seconds into the game to make it 1-0 in a flash. Norwich was able to respond a little over a minute later to make it 1-1, before forward Reese Tamburo potted a powerplay goal to jump ahead 2-1. Norwich responded once more four minutes later to make it 2-2, which stood till the end of the first. Forward John Rodgers gave the Generals the go ahead goal in the second period, finding twine seven minutes into the period. The Gens laid on the insurance goals in the third, with Nuzzolilo scoring just short of five minutes into the final period, before Tamburo found his second of the game on a chip in to make it 5-2 14 minutes into the third, which stood as the final score to clinch the series. 

Goaltender Mike Foglia got his first start of the playoffs in game two, and made the most of it, stopping 24 of the 26 shots he saw in the series clincher. Tamburo led the team in points with three, picking up an assist to pair with his two goals. Four other Generals recorded two point games, including Hemmer and Nuzzolilo with a goal and assist, and forwards Gabe Vijuk and Mason Frary with two assists. 

With the East Division locked up, the Generals head to St. Peters Rec-Plex in St. Peters, Missouri, where the team will take on the Helena Bighorns and the Louisiana Drillers in the first two games of the Fraser Cup Playoffs Round Robin. The Gens will take on Helena on Thursday, March 21 at 8:00 PM EST in game one, before facing Louisiana on Friday, March 22 at 8:00 PM EST once more. If the Generals win either game, they will advance to the semifinals.