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By Mike Flanagan
Hometown Weekly Sports Editor
The Walpole High School varsity boys hockey team hosted Braintree on Wednesday evening looking to earn points in consecutive contests following a 3-3 tie with Wellesley on January 2.
Unfortunately, the Rebels (4-2-2, 2-1-2) were unable to shake off a slow start as the Wamps (5-2-1, 3-1-1) jumped out to a big lead and commanded their way to a 7-1 victory.
It took just 29 seconds for the Wamps to strike as Matt Hemmert fired home a wrist shot upstairs on a rush into the zone to draw first blood for Braintree. With 10:24 to play in the period, Chris Sarno doubled Braintree’s lead to 2-0 with a rebound off a shot from the point. Tom Fruci nearly cut the deficit to one for Walpole with a wrist shot from the top of the circle - the puck snuck through the five hole of Braintree goalie Nathan Eskander, but out the other side and into the far corner. The game entered the first intermission with Braintree still ahead 2-0.
Just 1:12 into the second period, Braintree struck again as Johnny Harrington unleashed a wicked wrister from the top of the circle off of a turnover to give the Wamps a 3-0 edge. With 6:36 remaining, Hemmert shot home his second of the night, this time coming on the power play to push the lead to 4-0. With Walpole on a five-on-three power play late in the period, senior captain and defenseman Liam Fisher finally got the Rebels on the board with a wrist shot down low from the high slot, cutting the deficit to 4-1 at the second intermission.
Walpole was unable to seize momentum following the goal by Fisher as Braintree added three third period goals via Scotty Lagos (two) and Brady Leslie to emerge with the 7-1 victory.
The Rebels will look to get back on track at Milton on January 18.
For funny and insightful sports analysis as well as video highlights of games, follow Mike Flanagan on his personal Twitter and Instagram @flano0.