EXETER, N.H. — A Saturday winter storm that brought the area’s biggest snowfall of 2021-22 could not prevent the matchup between Cushing Academy and Phillips Exeter from happening, albeit a day after it was originally scheduled.
The Big Red pulled off a 3-2 upset victory over the Penguins, getting a strong performance in net from Michael Salvatore (Newburyport, Mass.) despite a Cushing push to tie the game with Mason Kesselring’s (Center Barnstead, N.H.) big shot off the rush with less than 1:30 remaining in regulation.
The game was competitive, though it did feature a lot of whistles, including multiple 5-on-3 advantages for both teams. Exeter took a 2-0 lead on goals from Ryan Sordillo and Kurt Gurkan (Darien, Conn.). After Cushing’s Landan Resendes (Marlboro, Mass.) tallied a 5-on-3 strike to cut the lead in half, Exeter answered. Michael Dinges’ second-period power-play goal stood up as the game-winner, the Haverhill, Mass., native beating goaltender Jackson Irving (Newbury, Mass.) with a quick release from the slot. The home win raised Exeter’s record under first-year head coach Tim Mitropoulos to 10-4-2
Here’s a look at key performances from the game and other standouts we witnessed from the previous week of the prep hockey schedule, including a couple of sleepers from a recent game between Kimball Union Academy and Tilton School.