Prep drops No. 20 Xaverian in OT

DANVERS, Mass. -- For such a low-scoring affair, there was an awful lot of drama action to the final quarter-plus of St. John’s Prep 6-5 overtime win over Xaverian at Cronin Field on Thursday.

First, the Hawks lost their starting goaltender to an injury midway through the fourth. Then, trailing by two goals to Prep, Xaverian clawed back to tie the score with eight seconds remaining.

However, a quick faceoff win, a timeout, a set play and John Farrow’s game-winning dodge from behind the cage delivered a crucial 6-5 Catholic Conference win for Prep over the 20th-ranked Hawks.

“It was frustrating especially because last time, down their place, we had a lead as we did today and they were able to come back and beat us by a goal,” Farrow said. “We didn’t want that to happen [again], so after they scored that goal, we stressed that we didn’t want that to happen again.”

Xaverian (6-6) trailed by two scores with 8:49 to play in the fourth when senior goaltender Chris Fotta was knocked out of the game. Fotta made a clearing attempt with his feet, taking the ball to midfield before he was inadvertently hit under the chin on a check from Lucas Bavaro.

Fotta suffered a concussion and was taken by ambulance to the hospital for evaluation.

The ensuing three-minute man-up opportunity provided the Hawks with a perfect opportunity to even the score.

Xaverian scraped across one goal during the penalty with Cabot Noyce notching his third point (1 G, 2 A) of the game.

The Hawks have several sterling opportunities at the equalizer in the final minutes only to be rebuffed. But, just before time ran out, Ryan Scheib let one rip from 20 yards and found the top right corner to force the game into overtime.

However, it wouldn’t take long for Prep (6-5) to find the game-winner in overtime.

“Mark MacDonald is our faceoff guy and he does a fantastic job,” Eagles head coach John Roy said. “We’re confident when we have him at the faceoff X. He won it for us, we called the timeout and tried to score that goal.

“It’s good getting it out of the way because the longer you go into overtime, it’s hectic and you never know what’s going to happen.”

Farrow ended the game just 32 seconds into the overtime period. Off a set play called during the timeout, Farrow set up behind the cage and made a power move to the front of the crease, bounding one in before his teammates piled on him in celebration.

Farrow led the Eagles with a three-point game including two goals and an assist.

Midfielder Drew O’Connell also had a two-goal game for Prep while Tom Dion tallied a pair for Xaverian.

“Now we’ve got a couple wins in a row, so we can get things rolling,” Farrow said. “But if we would’ve let that one slip away, that would’ve been a tough loss definitely.”