MORRIS TOWNSHIP — Any doubt about possible Don Bosco rustiness a week removed from its last game were put to rest from the opening face-off.
Senior defenseman John Campomenosi scored a pair of nifty goals while junior forward Simon Aktar finished with a goal and two assists to send Don Bosco, No. 1 in The Hockey Night In Boston New Jersey Top 10, to a 6-1 victory over sixth-ranked Morristown-Beard at Twin Oaks Rink.
The Ironmen improved to 13-0-1 in a display of speed that was impressive for 45 minutes as they out-shot the Crimson by a 40-15 margin in their first contest since they defeated the Hun School, 8-1, at Citi Field in Queens, N.Y. on Jan. 3.
“They are good,” Morristown-Beard coach Randy Velischek said. “They are the best hockey team I’ve seen. Our defensemen played hard, but it was tough to match their speed. They put a ton of pressure in our zone from the start, and they are a very disciplined team. It’s tough to match their speed.”
Campomenosi, who opened the scoring 4:47 into the contest with a power-play goal to give Don Bosco a 1-0 lead, acknowledged his team’s swift style outside the locker room.
“I think speed is what we’re known for this year,” said Campomenosi. “Our D like to jump into the play when we can and our transition was especially quick today. We scored today but we like to limit teams’ shots as much as possible. We have high standards on the defensive side.”
The Bergen County school limited Morristown-Beard (9-3-1) to just three shots in the first period, which also saw Aktar deliver the game-winner with 5:31 left when he snapped in a shot shortside from the right circle to extend the lead to 2-0.
“That was one of our best first-periods this year,” said Don Bosco assistant coach Andrew Steffey. “I think the speed factor we have is what separates us from other teams. We focus on our transition and try to catch a lot of teams with that ability. We generated a lot of odd-man rushes.”
The Ironmen’s speed was quite evident in the opening period as they put 14 shots on net. Morristown-Beard goalie Anthony Del Tufo was outstanding throughout in making 34 saves overall — including 26 through the first 30 minutes.
Another impressive factor was the production provided by the Ironmen’s second line – the Green Line – featuring Aktar, Connor Sedlak and Liam McLinskey, who all scored.
“That secondary scoring from that line was huge,” Steffey noted. “They had a lot of jump and were pretty impressive.”
Don Bosco opend a 3-0 advantage on a goal by McLinskey with 4:04 left in the second. Morristown-Beard got on the board less than a minute later on a goal by Connor Tartaglione, who darted onto a loose puck and shoveled home a rebound to cut it to 3-1.
Sedlak finished off a nifty 2-on-1 with 2:05 left in the second to extend the Don Bosco lead to 4-1 as the Ironmen totaled a 29-9 shot advantage after the second.
After Campomenosi’s second goal made it 5-1, junior defenseman T.J. Schweighardt finished the scoring when he whistled through a shot from the right point with 1:50 showing.
“We were ready,” said Schweighardt. “Our coaches told us before the game that getting that first goal quickly was important and we were able to get the quick lead; and with our speed not many teams can hang with us. We had the legs today.”
Written by Paul Bruno / @PaulBrunoHS
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