HALLOWELL — The Gardiner/Winslow/Waterville boys hockey team needed to find a way to put the puck in the net.

It happened early on Wednesday afternoon, as Nate Luiz and Cobe LeClair each scored first period goals and led the team to a 2-0 victory over the Cony co-op in a Class B North clash at the Ice Vault.

“It was good, we needed the momentum before the playoffs,” LeClair said. “Get the boys buzzing.”

The win snapped a four-game losing streak for Gardiner/Winslow/Waterville (3-10-0), which is still findingits way as a first-year co-op program. The team is battling for possible playoff positioning.

“We always tend to let teams hang around more than we should, but that’s how we are,” said Gardiner/Winslow/Waterville head coach KC Johnson. “We’re still trying to figure out our culture.”

Cony — which includes players from Monmouth Academy, Erskine Academy, Winthrop and Hall-Dale — dropped to 2-8-1.


Luiz tallied the first goal midway in the first period, a wrist shot past the glove of Cony goaltender Landon Foster, for a 1-0 lead. Casey Paul and Gavin White were credited with assists.

Gardiner/Winslow/Waterville added its second and final goal three minutes later, when LeClair knocked a shot past Foster for the 2-0 lead. Jared Newgard assisted.

Waterville/Gardiner/Winslow forward Nate Lutz takes a shot in the third period of a boys hockey game against the Cony co-op team on Wednesday at The Camden National Bank Ice Vault in Hallowell. Joe Phelan/Kennebec Journal

“We needed the momentum from the start and that just kept us going through the game,” LeClair said. “We didn’t poke any more (goals) in, but we were in (Cony’s) zone 95 percent of the game and had most shots all period. That’s all that matters.”

From there, it was all on Gardiner/Winslow/Waterville goalie Aiden Paradis, who made 25 saves to earn his first shutout of the season.

“Aiden had a bunch of shots (early), not as many in the third, but he was able to seal (the shutout). It’s a good win for him,” Johnson said.

Gardiner/Winslow/Waterville went a perfect 3 for 3 on the penalty kill, including a 5-on-3 situation early in the game.

Foster — who had a 70-save performance earlier this season — stayed busy on the other end of the ice. He finished with 40 saves.

“We’ve been in a slump, and it (stinks) to lose to Gardiner,” Foster said. “But it’s a step in the right direction, it feels like. And next game, we’ll come out hard and hopefully capitalize on opportunities and put pucks on net.”

The rivals split the regular season series; the Cony co-op beat Gardiner/Winslow/Waterville 5-0 on Dec. 12.

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