MANCHESTER — In two seasons on the varsity team, Londonderry senior Frank Wynters had never lit the lamp.
So when he jumped into the arms of a teammate to celebrate his second goal of the biggest victory in Londonderry hockey history, the exuberance was more than deserved.
“I never could have imagined this,” said Wynters. “I was screaming and just jumped onto the arms of (defenseman) Colby (Austin). Some people said the celebration was a little much, and that it looked like I had scored an overtime goal. But I couldn’t help it. It is just crazy.”
The Londonderry hockey team had plenty to celebrate yesterday.
Wynters’ two goals were just the start of an historic night for the No. 3 Lancers, who rolled over No. 7 archrival Pinkerton Academy 5-1 in the Division 1 state semifinals at the JFK Rink in Manchester.
The victory earned Londonderry hockey its first ever trip to the state title game since the program began play in 2000-01. The Lancers lost in the Division 1 semifinal a season ago.
“It is just crazy to imagine that,” said senior captain Eric Coburn, who added two goals. “When I was in eighth grade I think we won about four games. So to get this far and have the chance to get the team’s first title is unbelievable. I can’t even describe it. This is the best game I have ever been a part of.”
The Lancers will attempt to become the fifth hockey team in Eagle-Tribune area history to win a state title when they face No. 4 Manchester Central — which beat top-seeded St. Thomas 4-1 last night — in the Division 1 title game on Sunday at 4:30 p.m. at the Verizon Wireless Arena in Manchester.
“It honestly doesn’t even feel real at this point,” said senior Curtis Harper. “When you want something this bad you will do anything to achieve it. We wanted this and we have an amazing group of guys. And to beat our rival on the way makes it even better. I can’t even imagine what the title game is going to be like.”