Red-hot boys hockey team continues to pile up W’sBy Jay Turner
Update: The CHS boys ice hockey team battled defending state champion Medfield to a 1-1 draw Wednesday night at the Canton Ice House. The Bulldogs (7-2-2) will visit Stoughton tomorrow at Asiaf Rink in Brockton.
With another win on Monday against former playoff nemesis Newburyport, the Canton High boys ice hockey team ran its unbeaten streak to eight in a row and gained an extra shot of momentum heading into this week’s highly anticipated showdown with defending state champion Medfield.
Scheduled for last night at the Canton Ice House, the matchup with the Warriors figured to be one of the Bulldogs’ toughest tests to date — not to mention the perfect “heat check” game for a Canton team that has feasted on weaker opponents as of late.
Last week saw the Canton boys blow past Attleboro (4-5-1) at the brand-new New England Sports Village and then double up Foxboro (2-6-0) at home despite a lackluster first two periods. That was followed by Monday’s 2-0 victory against a 1-6 Newburyport team, although their record does not tell the whole story, according to head coach Brian Shuman.
“They are a really good team that has lost a lot of close games,” Shuman said of the Clippers. “If they played in the Hockomock they would probably be in the upper half of the league.”
Then again, the Bulldogs may very well be the best team in the Hock — they are currently ranked a close second behind Franklin by MassHSHockey.com — and they proved to be the superior team on Monday as they out-shot and eventually outscored their nonleague foes in a hard-fought, back-and-forth battle.
After failing to capitalize on several power play opportunities throughout the second and third periods, Canton finally broke the scoreless tie midway through the final frame on a hard wrist shot by senior captain Tommy Kilduff. Freshman Johnny Hagan would add an empty net goal with under a minute to go to seal the win for the home team.
On the defensive end, junior Brad Murphy played another strong game for the Bulldogs while starting goalie Quinn Gibbs made a number of key saves in what Shuman described as his “best game of the season.”
“Quinn was outstanding in this game,” said the Canton coach. “Every period, especially at the end of periods, he made some really big stops that were crucial in keeping [Newburyport] off the board.”
Two days earlier against Foxboro, sophomore Mike Staffiere was given the start in net — the first of his varsity career — and it ended on a high note as the Bulldogs came away with a 4-2 victory.
The Warriors got on the board first and actually led for more than half of the game before the hosts kicked it into high gear over the final 20 minutes or so. Kilduff, Ryan Nolte, Jack Goyetch, and Bubba McNeice each had a goal in the win while Murphy drew praise from Shuman for his energy and physical play.
In the Attleboro win last Wednesday, unlike the Foxboro game, the Bulldogs scored early and often en route to an easy 6-1 decision. Kilduff led the way with two goals while Nolte and Goyetch each had a goal and an assist. McNeice and Hagan also found the back of the net in the win while senior DJ Trerice and junior Mike Dadasis each contributed assists.
After hosting Medfield on Wednesday, Canton (7-2-1) will turn its attention back to the Davenport Division as the boys get set to visit Stoughton on Saturday followed by a home game next Wednesday at 4:30 against highly touted North Attleboro. The schedule doesn’t get any easier after that with upcoming games against nonleague Medway and Kelley-Rex foes Taunton and Mansfield.
Short URL: http://www.thecantoncitizen.com/?p=35263