Monday, March 21, 2016

"that’s what high school sports are all about"

A Cinderella run from the Franklin Panthers ended with a true storybook ending. 
Sophomore Luke Downie, who celebrated his 16th birthday on Sunday, scored on a wrist shot six minutes into the second overtime to give Franklin a 4-3 win over St. Mary’s Lynn and the program its first MIAA Division 1 State Championship. 
Senior Tyler Oakes connected on a pass from his own zone to senior and Jake Downie (Luke’s cousin) along the boards in the neutral, who then dropped the puck back to Luke after crossing the blue line. Luke fired a wrist shot that deflected off the the leg of a St. Mary’s defenseman and found it’s way over the goalie’s pad short side for the game winner. 
“This is awesome,” Luke Downie said postgame. “This is the best birthday present you could ask for.”
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Franklin hockey victorious in D1 Championship
Franklin hockey victorious in D1 Championship

In 1983, Franklin went into overtime in the Div. 2 state championship game against Falmouth at the old Boston Garden. Ken Assad, now an assistant coach for the Panthers, broke free on a 2-on-1. He passed to his brother Brian, whose shot was spilled back into the path of Ken for the game-winning, and title-winning, goal. 
On Sunday night, the Panthers went into double overtime at the TD Garden against St. Mary’s (Lynn) in search of a second state title and first since that magical night 32 years ago. Once again, it was a family connection that secured the trophy. 
Senior Jake Downie received a cross-ice pass from Tyler Oakes and gained the zone. As he skated towards the lefthand circle, he spotted his sophomore cousin Luke racing up behind him and dropped a pass into his path. 
“I came down and saw Luke coming up behind me, dropped it back and I just saw him rip it and I knew it was going in,” said Jake in the press room after the game.
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Hockomock Sports has additional photos from the game here

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