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Gouveia Scores Hat-Trick As Hockey Team Skates To Victory



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DANBURY — Led by a three-goal effort off the stick of Cam Gouveia, the Newtown-New Fairfield high school hockey team defeated visiting Southington-Coginchaug-Westbrook 4-1 at Danbury Ice Arena on January 19. The Newtown-led skaters outshot the Southington co-op 31-26.

James Celentano was assisted by Ronan McAllister for the first Nighthawk goal. Gouveia was assisted by John O’Sullivan on a nice tip of a shot from the point. With Newtown-New Fairfield leading 2-1 late in the second period, the Nighthawks capitalized on a risky gamble by Southington which pulled its goaltender for the extra attacker with eight seconds remaining in the stanza. Gouveia scored his second of the night, assisted by Celentano, on a breakaway in the waning seconds. Gouveia, assisted by Eddie Faircloth, scored another empty-netter late in regulation to complete the hat-trick effort.

Ashton Albert, O’Sullivan, Sebastian Cilia, McAllister played solid defense in front of goaltender Markus Paltauf, who also played well, Coach Paul Esposito said.

The Newtown coach added that Celentano played well, setting the tone for the team, and that Faircloth is getting his game going. Ryan Anderson added physicality, and Quinn Harris provided strong forechecking and broke up plays.

The Nighthawks were coming off a tie and overtime loss and picked up their first win since the season opener and improved to 2-8-1 with nine games remaining.

“Proud of the resiliency of the team. Team hasn’t quit all season — some bounces finally went our way puck-luck wise,” said Esposito, adding that the Hawks played their best game to date as a team.

“Emphasis going into the game was that everyone needs to contribute and play a role. Rough start to our first half of the season,” Esposito said. “Defense played a great game, offense did a nice job of keeping pucks in oppositions zone, forechecking improved as game went on. We’ll need to continue playing this way if we want to get into the state playoffs. Coaching staff and players believe that we can.”

Sports Editor Andy Hutchison can be reached at andyh@thebee.com.

Newtown’s Cam Gouveia unleashes a shot on goal as teammates Ashon Albert, left, and James Celentano look on and Staples of Westport players defend during a game at Milford Ice Pavilion this winter. Gouveia had a hat-trick in a 4-1 win over the Southington co-op, at Danbury Ice Arena, on January 19. —Bee Photos, Hutchison
Ryan Anderson, left, goes for the puck in front of the Newtown-New Fairfield team bench.
Jack Albano keeps the puck in the zone near the blue line as teammate Ryan Anderson (No. 13) gets into position.
Ronan McAllister picks up some speed as he carries the puck out of the defensive zone.
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