Stephon Williams’ athleticism matters a lot in his game. While his teammates turned the third into a laugher, he was keeping his composure.
“I felt I was moving well,” Williams said. “I played more of a structured game than I probably have in the past, especially last year, those five games. It’s something I’ve been working on. … I’ve been able to be successful incorporating it into my game.”
There weren’t a ton of great St. John’s scoring chances, but he made saves, limited second chances, and, when things got crazy on that second-period IceCaps power play, he got help from Kevin Czuczman’s noggin and then the crossbar.
Which takes nothing away from 33 out of 34.
“Willy was outstanding,” Thompson said. “His rebound control, he was reading the plays. It was a calming effort. He gave us a great game, much like Gibby (Christopher Gibson) did (Saturday).”
A good start for both Bridgeport goalies, getting the calming-influence treatment from their coach. Williams was certainly happy.
“Now it’s just finding that happy medium between the structure and the athleticism.”
They are practicing Monday with a game Tuesday, so more tomorrow.
Where’d the third period come from? “I think we cleaned up a lot of details, the unnecessary turnovers,” Thompson said. “We elevated our second effort. We won wall battles. … Credit the leaders in the room.”
Where’d that melee come from? See the paper tomorrow. (Sorry.) Bracken Kearns had some good stuff on that, his goal, and the connection between them. (And Thompson, reacting to that, wasn’t bad, either.)
This is the sixth time the Sound Tigers have opened the season 2-0. Of those five previous seasons, they missed the playoffs four times. (2009-10, when they went on to the only 4-0 start in team history, is the exception, and even that turned into a slog.)
OK, whatever, history: How does this team build on a 2-0 start? “They brought in a lot of character guys,” Kearns said. “That’s got lasting power, right? With skill guys, you can win some games, but character, you’re going to do well throughout the year.”
Really nice crowd yesterday. Announced 2,108 today, second-smallest announced weekend crowd in team history. (Are there challenges in selling three home games in the first four days of the season? Yeah.)
Respectable save, Jeremy Smith.
The NWHL’s Connecticut Whale opened with a win.
And RIP, Dean Chance.