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Northstars fire away against Frederick

January 14, 2009|By TIM KOELBLE

The Washington County Northstars are like a stunt gun full of hockey pucks.

Just ask Frederick about it after the Northstars merrily rolled along the way to a 13-3 mercy-rule victory Tuesday at the Hagerstown Ice & Sports Complex.

Eric Bowers led way with six goals -- the second time in three games he's accomplished the double-hat-trick feat as he raised his total goals to 30 on the season.

Andrew Lowery also joined in on the fun with his first hat trick. Lowery, who also plays football at Boonsboro High School, has returned to active duty with two pins in his left wrist after suffering an early-season football injury.

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"That feels great scoring three because you don't normally get that from a defenseman," said Lowery, who has been lacing up the skates since he was 11 years old. "I just like to go out and hit, that's why I like football and hockey."

The Northstars (10-1, 8-1 MSHL) started their assault early against Frederick (0-7), a team that was allowing eight goals per game.

"We traditionally are a fast-scoring team out of the gate and that's what we wanted to do against a freshman goalie," said Northstars head coach Jamie Blackwood.

Just 38 seconds into the game, Joe Blackwood scored the first of his two goals on a slapshot from the right of Frederick goalie Jeremy Jones.

Following a Frederick shot, Lowery took the puck off the net, skated ahead and passed to Bowers, who in turned fed back to Lowery for a nifty goal at the 7:58 mark.

Just 33 seconds later, the speedy 5-foot-4 Bowers went the length of the ice with a wicked shot that Jones likely never saw. And at the 6:59 mark it became 4-0 when Andrew Baker, normally a goalie, knocked in a rebound for his first-ever goal.

With 3:56 left, Blackwood scored his second goal on an assist from Zach Kimmel and the rout was officially on.

Alex Benda, coming off a shutout win in goal over Middletown on Jan. 7, worked a scoreless period before giving way to Mikhail Gardner.

Frederick cut the deficit to 5-2 on a pair of power-play scores from James Dorrian before the Northstars reloaded.

Bowers sandwiched goals around one by Lowery before Dorrian scored for Frederick. It became 10-3 by the end of the second on goals again by Lowery and Bowers, the last by Bowers on a breakaway that might have come off the stick with the speed of a Nolan Ryan fastball.

Frustration might have set in for Frederick early in the final period as Bowers scored twice and Dakota Durning finished off the night with a goal at the 7:21 mark.

"Lowery and Bowers, they are just so physical," said Jamie Blackwood. "Bowers' job is to take the beating in front of the net in our triangle. He got good open shots to the face side of the net and that's his strongest side."

All told, the Northstars peppered 31 shots on Jones, who faced extreme adversity as his teammates failed to respond defensively and drop men back to provide help.

Durning, Kimmel, Baker and Joe Blackwood each had two assists, while one each went to Bowers, Savon Ambush, Keith Koontz and Mathew Stemper.

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