The field for the 2011 state tournament was officially set at 10:57pm Saturday, after nearly three hours of play at the Appleton Family Ice Center between Notre Dame Academy and Ashwaubenon.
In the third overtime--and after 69 minutes of play--Tim Davison buried a shot from the mid-slot to propel the Tritons past Ashwaubenon 4-3 in a very exciting sectional five final on a snowy Saturday evening.
Although it took a while for the teams to get on the scoreboard, the first period had end-to-end action, albeit none of it the scoring variety. Five penalties were called, but neither team was able to score on the power play. NDA held a 9-4 shot advantage in the scoreless period.
Then in the second period, the Jags looked like they were going to run away, scoring two goals in the first eight minutes of play to take a two-goal lead.
Nick LeSage scored for the Jags at the 1:03 mark, when his shot from the high slot snuck past NDA netminder Chris Nell. Filip Chlupac and Matthew Berkovitz earned assists on the play.
Nearly seven minutes later the Jags took advantage of a power play. After some banging in the crease area, the puck popped in the air and squirted past Nell for a Jag goal. The Tritons and coach Cory McCracken argued, but the goal--credited to Chlupac--stood at the 7:55 mark.
NDA didn't waste much time in cutting the margin to one goal. Since turnabout is fair play, the Tritons decided to take advantage of the power play and got a goal from Steven Phillips from the left dot area at 8:38. Grant Kluesner was given an assist on the play.
The Jags took a 2-1 lead into the locker room while outshooting their foe 9-6.
The Tritons would put their firepower on display early in the third to take a 3-2 lead.
Connor Doran scored from the left dot to tie the game at two each at 2:40 of the period, with assists to Davison and Riley Christensen.
Just eight seconds later, NDA took the lead when Jason Reynolds grabbed a rebound off the right pad of Ashwaubenon freshman goalie Ryan Wischow and stuffed the puck into the net. Austin Vieth and Phillips were given assists on the score.
WHCA/American Family Insurance Player of the Year finalist Cal DeRosier showed why he is one of the best players in the state when he skated in on Nell and after a deke or two, put the puck in the net to tie the game at three. Austin Berkovitz tallied an assist.
With about seven minutes left, Reynolds grabbed a loose puck on the low right side and sent it toward an empty net, only to see Wischow dive to his left and snag the puck before it went into the net. The Tritions argued that it crossed the goal line, but the officials ruled no goal.
Wischow made a couple more nice saves late in the period, but the best save might have been made by Nell with just 25 seconds left in the period.
Unable to get off for a line change, a defenseman fired the puck in an attempt to get an icing call. The puck went on net, and Nell had to make an alert play to keep the skipping puck from getting past him.
NDA held a 12-6 shot edge.
The game went into OT, and almost ended in the first couple of minutes. Doran skated in on the right side and ripped a shot that beat Wischow, but unfortunately for NDA, caromed off the left post and skittered harmlessly into the corner.
Wischow made two nice saves midway through the period to send the contest into a second extra period.
NDA once again outshot the Jags, this time by a margin of 5-2.
Neither team scored in the second OT, with Ashwaubenon holding a 5-1 shot edge.
In the third and final overtime period, play went back and forth until Davison was able to corral the puck and snipe one past the Jags' goalie for the game-winner at 2:08, with an assist to Vieth.
Nell made 23 saves, while Wischow stopped 30 pucks.
Notre Dame will face Marquette in the first quartefinal game, set for noon on Thursday.