WATERVILLE — Two days later, Cody Pellerin was still a little miffed that the RiverHawks even needed overtime in their regular season opener.

“We shouldn’t have been in that situation in the first place, but I’m glad we came away with the win,” Pellerin, a senior, said before Monday’s practice at Colby College’s Alfond Rink. “I really did not want a tie in that game to start off our season, not against a team that I knew we could beat.”

Not typically known in his career as a sniper, Pellerin snapped one home from the top of the circle with just 13 seconds left in the extra session at Bangor’s Sawyer Arena, lifting the new Waterville/Winslow co-op to a 3-2 win over John Bapst in the first game for the new team.

Waterville-Winslow formed a co-op for the first time this season, known as the Kennbec RiverHawks.

Cooper Hart netted the opening goal for Kennebec, entering the history books as the first player to score for the RiverHawks. Pellerin finished with two goals.

First-year head coach Jon Hart agreed with Pellerin in that he’d rather not have seen his team squander a two-goal, third-period lead. But he was also willing to look at the positive effect of such a victory on the road.

“It was huge for us, it really was,” Hart said. “We showed we have a lot of room to improve and we can definitely get better, but leaders stepped up when it mattered and came up clutch. Big, big win for us.

“I’m glad we went into overtime. In the moment, I was not happy. Those are those moments, in those big games, you don’t want to be going to overtime. But it is big to win that overtime game, and to see the team come together after every goal and after the win, it was big for us.”

It could prove to be a valuable early season test for Kennebec, which plays its first home game Wednesday night at Colby College. The RiverHawks will host a familiar foe in Old Town/Orono, the same team Waterville beat in the Class B North finals last winter.

The Coyotes beat Messalonskee 13-1 Saturday night in their season opener.

“We’re expecting a very tough game,” Hart said. “These teams are going to battle, that’s the one thing about this league. Nobody’s going to give it to you.”

• • •

With a 5-2 win over Brunswick last week, the Winslow/Gardiner girls entered a seven-day layoff on a three-game winning streak. The Black Tigers, led by a potent top line of Evelyn Hinkley, Anna Chadwick and Sarah Stevens, have outscored opponents 17-7 since an opening-night loss to two-time defending state champion St. Dom’s.

“Obviously, our top line is going to score, and they’re doing that,” Winslow/Gardiner coach Alan Veilleux said. “For our second and third lines, it’s a little bit harder, but we preach that it’s a lot of hard work and that’s what they’re doing.”

In the win over Brunswick, Hinkley, Chadwick and Stevens combined for four goals and eight points.

“Before the game, (Hinkley and I) were pre-gaming, doing a little duet and singing in the locker room, and there was just this really cool vibe between us,” Chadwick said. “Then we came out with Sarah Stevens, and we all just made good passes and were able to read each other very well.”

• • •

Cony/Hall-Dale/Monmouth found its second-line scoring from first-year players on Saturday night.

The Rams opened the campaign with a 5-0 win over rival Gardiner, with perhaps the brightest spotlight of the evening being shone on a pair of freshmen on the team’s third line. Duncan Hayes scored twice in the victory, while Tyrell Sousa had a pair of assists.

It’s just the type of secondary scoring Cony coach Chad Foye was hoping he’d be able to find this season.

“I know they’re good players. I didn’t quite expect two goals out of them,” Foye said. “They move the puck, they pass and they go to space. That’s a credit to them and their hard work. It was good to see them do that.

“We expect that line to play well.”

Hayes capped a three-goal outburst in a span of 2:29 in the first period to give Cony a 3-0 lead at the time, and he scored the only goal of the second period to stake the Rams to a 4-0 lead after 30 minutes.

Hayes admitted to some nervousness prior to the opening faceoff in his first career varsity game.

“Honestly, a little rattled for my first high school game,” Hayes said. “It’s something new, something that I’ve got to get used to.”

Hayes and Sousa are matched up with another freshman, Quincy Tobias. The three have played together some previously, which has helped their chemistry.

“Me and Tyrell have played a few years together, and me and Quincy have played a little bit together, too,” Hayes said. “We’ve been pretty consistent.”

Cony plays at Class B Brunswick Wednesday before meeting two-time defending Class A state champion Lewiston on Saturday night.

Travis Barrett — 621-5621

[email protected]

Twitter: @TBarrettGWC

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