A 7:30am game on Saturday, December 22nd against Salem at the Rockett Arena at Salem State College is the first win of the season and second game for the Mad Dogs. Coaches Bill Pepicelli and his son Billy Pepicelli arrived on a cold morning ready for a good game. All the players seemed ready too as soon as they skated onto the ice.
Paul Barbieri started the game as goalie with a strong defense to rely on. There was a four minute wait before Ryan O'Connor got the first goal assisted by Frankie Bonnano and Jeff Russo. Then, Nick Scali scored assisted by Dylan MacKinnon and Brendan McCaffery. The next three goals were scored by J. Russo who tipped his cap after the hat trick. O'Connor had the assist for two of those goals, while Defensemen Connor Desharnais, Chris Mills and Dave Schorr also played a part. Bonnano got another assist on J. Russo's middle goal. Salem switched goalies as it seemed they were having no luck between the pipes against the rush of Mad Dog shots. Scali soon got another goal on Salem's second goalie assisted by Logan D'Auria and Mccaffery. Puck battles were won by Cameron Arrigo, Alex Russo and others to keep the game one-sided. Barbieri in net left a strong lead and a shut-out going when Brian Wilshusen came into the game halfway through. O'Connor scored assisted by J. Russo and Robbie Ramirez. To close out the points, Cameron Mercier scored the eighth goal of the game assisted by Ramirez and Nick Dalla Santa. Wilshusen kept the shut-out alive with some good saves and the fast pace of the Mad Dog's enthusiastic play overpowered Salem 8-0.
With solid coaching and impressive hockey skills, the Mad Dogs woke up the spectators and started the first weekend of the winter with their first win of the season! Their next four games are December 24th, 26th, 27th and 31st at the O'Brien Ice Rink.