WINSLOW — The Skowhegan/Madison co-operative hockey team made history last season when it won its first-ever Eastern A playoff game.
The Indians, with seven returning seniors, entered this season with even higher expectations, and they showed why Wednesday night.
Kyle Demchak and Trey Michonski each scored two goals to lead Skowhegan past Winslow 6-2 at Sukee Arena.
“It was a good character win,” Skowhegan coach Jeff Fowler said. “It was a close game. Winslow is very good and they are only going to get better. Both teams played physical.”
Cam DesPres scored a goal and Sam Edmondson stopped 18 shots for the Indians (1-0-0).
The Indians, who were in the unenviable position of playing a season opener against an already tested opponent, showed no signs of any rust. They carried play for long stretches and never trailed.
Skowhegan led 3-2 after two periods but put the game away when Demchak and Michonski scored 35 seconds apart early in the third.
Cam Grenier and Jascob Trask scored for the Raiders, who lost a second consecutive game to open the season. Winslow (0-2-0) fell to Presque Isle 10-9 in overtime last Friday.
The Raiders played well again Wednesday. Twice they fell behind by two goals and both times they responded to stay in the game.
Skowhegan led 2-1 after the first period and then surged ahead 3-1 when Michonski scored with 6 minutes, 43 seconds left in the second period.
It stayed that way until Cain, a senior forward, took a pass from Trask and beat Edmondson with a low shot with 4:01 left in the period.
Skowhegan raced out to a 2-0 lead before the game was three minutes old.
Demchak got it started for the Indians when he stuffed a rebound past Cam Tibbetts to the glove side just 1:52 into the game. Demchak was alone in front and converted a rebound off a DesPres shot.
Skowhegan made it 2-0 about a minute later when DesPres won a loose puck along the dasher, skated into the right circle and ripped the puck past Tibbetts to the far side.
The Raiders struggled to generate much offense until the final few minutes of the period. Grenier and the Raiders finally broke through with 4.3 seconds left in the first. After Edmondson stopped several point-blank shots in traffic, Grenier finally buried a rebound to cut the deficit in half, 2-1.
“It was a real tight game,” Fowler said. “Winslow never gave up. They just kept coming and coming.”
Bill Stewart — 621-5640