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Rockets Win North Crown in 11th Round of Shootout

Thanks to a dramatic win, Reading will take on Braintree on Sunday at TD Garden.

Curtis Anderson lays a big hit on Monday night in the North Division 1 final. (Matt Schooley Photo)
Curtis Anderson lays a big hit on Monday night in the North Division 1 final. (Matt Schooley Photo)
Luckily for the Reading Memorial High School boys hockey team, the state championship game isn't until Sunday. The Rockets will need some time to rest after Monday's night's marathon win.

Wilmington pushed Reading to 11 rounds of shootout tries after regulation and two overtimes weren't enough. 

Senior Michael Thomson scored in the 11th frame for Reading, propelling the locals to a 4-3 win over the Wildcats, 3-2 in the shootout. The victory gave the Rockets the North Division 1 championship and set up a state championship date.

Danny Schmidt gave Reading the 1-0 edge just over two minutes into the game, but Wilmington struck back late in the first period to knot things up into the first intermission.

The second period featured plenty of momentum swings. Luke Foley gave the Wildcats a 2-1 lead, Matt Thomson tied things up not long after, and Wilmington jumped back in the lead later in the frame as they took a 3-2 advantage.

But with just 58 seconds left in the middle period, Sean Verrier tied things up at 3-3 and set up a heart stopping finish.

Reading goalie Ian Lapham and Wilmington netminder Drew Foley put on a show in the third period and two overtime sessions, and continued the show into shootout.

The Rockets took a 2-0 advantage in the five-round shootout, but the Wildcats tied it up on their fifth and final attempt. As a result, the shootout turned to a sudden death format, which Reading won in the 11th round on Michael Thomson's score.

On Sunday, Reading will travel to TD Garden in Boston to take on Division 1 South champion Braintree.
Brian Tobin March 11, 2014 at 08:36 AM
Wow! Tough to answer the bell today! Go Rockets, Garden Party on Sunday!

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