BILLERICA — As was the case with its entire season, the Burlington High boys hockey team’s MIAA Division 1 North quarterfinal against Andover was an uphill battle.
After the Red Devils back from an early two-goal deficit to tie the score heading into the third period, Andover prevailed, 3-2 on Sunday at the Chelmsford Forum.
Burlington, a team that began the season at 4-6-1 before coming back to win the Middlesex League Freedom Division, finished its season at 14-8-2.
“This senior class was the one that ended the losing streak in the tournament,” said Burlington coach Bob Conceison, whose team won its first postseason game since 2013 when it defeated Newburyport, 4-1 in the opening round of the Division 1 North tournament. “That’s a positive. Where we were in December isn’t where we are now. That’s another positive. But first, we have to get over this.’
Andover (14-6-2), the fourth seed in the tournament and the Merrimack Valley Conference/Dual County League Division 1 champion, led the fifth-seeded Devils, 2-0 after Michael Feeney scored 21 seconds into the second period.
Burlington had its first opportunity at 8:21 of the second when Sean Savage went in on a breakaway and the Golden Warriors’ Anthony Teberio tripped him to draw a penalty.
Thirteen seconds later, Savage scored a power-play goal from the point.
Burlington tied the score at 10:26 of the third when Joe Barbieri knocked in a rebound after an initial shot from Matt Tyman.
The Devils kept the pressure on for the rest of the period and almost took the lead at 13:14, when PT Hayes had a breakaway, but the Warriors’ goalie Alex Trottier made the save.
“We just worked hard and stayed positive,” Conceison said.
Burlington had more good chances in the early moments of the third period, but Trottier kept the score tied.
At 8:15 of the third, Andover’s Sam Murray capitalized on a turnover in the neutral zone and scored, giving the Warriors the lead again.
“We made some mistakes and they capitalized on them,” Conceison said. “We felt they scored their goals too easily.”
Anthony Previte scored Andover’s first goal at 8:49 of the first period.
“They had very quick forwards and they did a good job forechecking,” Conceison said.
Joe Trabucco made 25 saves for Burlington while Trottier made 23.
Andover will play St. John’s Prep in the North semifinals on Thursday at the Tsongas Center.