Aidan Larson scored late in the second overtime period to give the Judge Bulldogs a 4-3 win over the East Leopards on Wednesday night at Judge Memorial High School in Salt Lake City. The two schools, separated by just a few city blocks, played about as evenly as possible, which made for an exciting game. The game also marked the first regular season win for new Judge head Coach Chuck Gosselin who took over for long-time coach Dave Allen last summer.
Judge scored first when Ben Butcher drew the defense on a dodge from X and found Anthony Palmer in the middle of the field who bounced it in. East equalized at the 2:11 mark in the first quarter on a goal by Seth McConkie. Miles Eyre gave the Bulldogs the lead in the second quarter when he found space down the alley and ripped it into the top of the net. Both goalies, Kort Johnson for East and Johnny Garlinghouse for Judge played lights out, stopping point blank shots and controlling the defenses.
The strong goalie play led to just one goal in the third quarter, a wrap around goal by Larson which extended the Bulldogs lead, 3-1. The fourth quarter started with East winning the face-off and taking a long possession, something they couldn’t do in the third quarter due to the great play by the Judge defense. The long possession paid off as Jacob Parkin scored a wrap around goal of his own, giving East the momentum they needed to tie the game a few minutes later. McConkie found the back of the net again on a man-up rip from the outside to tie the game at 3. Each team had several good chances to take the lead, but the goalies continued to make big saves. With 12 seconds left in regulation, Parkin took the ball off a timeout from the defensive end, all the way down the field and shot just wide as time ran out, sending the game to overtime. Again, both teams had great looks at goal in the first overtime, but neither team could break through. Finally, towards the end of the second overtime, Larson got a pass from Doug Gosselin and buried it for the win.
“Vegas helped us out to get the kinks out,” said Gosselin. “East has come a long way and it was a fun game. Aidan was outstanding for us and Johnny [Garlinghouse] kept us in the game.”
Judge (1-0) hosts Northridge on March 11 while East (0-1) will head to St. George this weekend to take on Desert Hills and Skyline.