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Detchemendy OT goal kills IceDawgs’ late rally
FHS hockey team forced deciding game in Knox tourney

Gage Despins’ new $200 hockey stick broke after scoring Farragut’s first goal against Bearden-Karns, but his Admirals didn’t break under the strain of a dramatic IceDawgs rally.

Farragut’s hockey team remained alive for a Knoxville Amateur Hockey Association High School Tournament title thanks to Thomas Detchemendy’s game-winning goal Thursday night, March 10, in the Icearium.

The sophomore fired his golden shot from about 30 feet out 23 seconds into a five-minute sudden-death overtime, as Farragut converted a 4-on-3 power play opportunity into a 4-3 win.

“I’ve got a tingling feeling going down my spine right now,” said Detchemendy, who also was part of an Ads defense shutting down the IceDawgs for two periods.

Saying he was “getting really tired” late in regulation, Detchemendy geared up for OT.

“I was just like, ‘I’ve got to try my heart out,’” he said. “I got a pass from Gage from the lower corner. I could feel it, I hit it on the sweet part of the stick.”

The Admirals fought off an IceDawgs rally, erasing a 3-0 third-period deficit, forcing one more FHS versus Bearden-Karns clash for the tourney title (played Tuesday, March 15, after deadline).

Both teams earn a shot in this week’s Blue Division State Tournament (including six Memphis-area teams) at the Icearium Saturday and Sunday, March 19-20.

“A 5-on-4 is always a good opportunity, but a 4-on-3 is a much better opportunity,” said Farragut head coach Robert Despins, whose team’s record improved to 9-4. Bearden dropped to 9-3.

“At that point in the game, it was a matter of, ‘OK, which team is going to put the extra effort in that’s required to win this game, to put it away,’” he added.

Two Gage Despins unassisted goals, plus one from Gavin Gauld, allowed Farragut to build a 3-0 lead after two periods. Lucas Despins added one assist.

Gage said the key “wasn’t our goals, it was our defense and our goalie [freshman Dakota Christian].”

Coach Despins praised the IceDawgs’ “really good offensive players. If they get any speed going they’re hard to stop. We put a lot of pressure on them in their zone so they couldn’t get going.

“And as a result of that, they gave up some pucks, which gave us those early scoring opportunities,” coach Despins added.

But back came the IceDawgs.

Nathan Anderson scored twice, at the 8:52 and 4:19 mark, the latter tally after breaking down the left side of the ice and, assisted by Justin Miracle, cutting the lead to 3-2. Nick Reed assisted on Anderson’s first goal.

Less than one minute after the second B-K goal, Shawn Doyle scored with 3:22 left after a failed FHS clearing attempt. Jake Fountaine assisted the tying goal.

“They did a great job of coming back,” the coach said. “They started to click, and when they click they’re dangerous.”

After Bearden-Karns tied the game, coach Despins said Christian “made two phenomenal saves, and that just gave us momentum right back.”

Despite missing two defensemen Thursday, “Our whole defensive squad played really well,” the FHS skipper said, adding with the shortened bench, “That takes a lot of effort and a lot of energy.

“Thomas and Taylor Herbst played a really good game, and Dane Despins, the third of the triplets [all sophomores], and Cody Jenike.”

IceDawgs freshman Josh Quarles, starting goalkeeper, said assistant coach Ed Mackle “gave us a real pep talk in the locker room” to help spark a rally.

John Cox, Bearden-Karns head coach, was unable to attend the game.


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