CANTON — The degree of separation between the Canton and Lincoln-Sudbury boys’ hockey teams remains thin as ever.
A year after the Warriors bested the Bulldogs in overtime in the opener for both teams — and less than three years since the teams were supposed to play for a Division 2 championship, only for the COVID-19 pandemic to intervene — it was Canton’s turn to secure a season-opening OT victory. The Bulldogs skated away with a 3-2 decision off Matt Anderson’s first career goal on the power play 4:10 into the extra session on Saturday night at Metropolis Rink.
“It felt amazing,” said Anderson, a junior defenseman. “The pressure was really on, it felt good to get away with a win.”
Canton, ranked 15th in the Globe’s initial Top 20 poll, received 21 saves from sophomore netminder Colin Davis, a holdover from last year’s team that fell in the Division 2 final vs. Tewksbury.
The Bulldogs built an initial 2-0 lead on a power-play tally from junior captain Brendan Tourgee 2:55 into the first and a Colin Blake offering at 14:24.
L-S, ranked 16th, got one back on a Rocco Cook strike 1:20 into the second and drew even on Drew Oblak’s goal on the man advantage at 3:26 of the third.
“The second period was one to forget,” Canton coach Brian Shuman said. “We totally lost sight of what we did well in the first.”
Shuman estimated the series between the Bulldogs and Warriors dated back about 17 seasons, first played when Peter Elenbaas, the former L-S coach and Shuman’s teammate at Bowdoin, was behind the bench.
Nearly two decades later, Shuman’s son Teddy, a freshman, and Peter’s son Sammy, a junior, were skating against one another for the Bulldogs and Warriors.
“We came from behind in both of our scrimmages, that’s become a bit of a thing,” said L-S coach Matt Carlin. “I don’t have a ton of hair, but I’m not going to have any if we don’t get some leads.”
New on the bench next to Carlin this winter is assistant Mike Nanartowich, the former Hudson head coach who retired in 2021 after 31 seasons and an inductee in the Mass. State Hockey Coaches Association Hall of Fame.