By Phil Stacey
---- — Unbeaten Northeastern Conference hockey champion Beverly High School placed eight players on the conference’s annual all-star team, which was announced last night.
Senior captain and center Connor Irving, junior defenseman Nick Albano and junior goaltender Tim Birarelli were three of the six All-League players in the NEC. They are joined by forwards Tom Koopman, a senior captain from Marblehead, and league MVP Chris Page of Winthrop; senior defenseman and captain Liam Gillis of Marblehead; and alternate Ryan MacDonald, a senior forward for the Lynn Jets.
Beverly’s five other players who will take part in Saturday’s NEC All-Star Game at the Rockett Arena in Salem are senior defensemen Matt Hamor, Jake Morency and Sean Munzing, as well as senior center Graham Doherty and senior forward Kevin Lally.
In addition to Tom Koopman and Gillis, Marblehead placed five additional players on the all-star team: twin sophomores Matt (a center) and Kyle (a defenseman) Koopman; senior forward Erik Powers and goaltenders Harrison Young and Miles Barry.
Danvers had five all-star representatives: senior forward and tri-captains Matt Flynn, Kevin Hodgkins and Jay Calcagno, as well as junior defenseman Stephen Ganley and junior goaltender Alex Taylor. The Falcons also received the Robert Melanson Team Sportsmanship Award.
Peabody’s all-star selections were senior captains Mike Vadala and Derek DeMild at forward, junior Matt Pino on defense and junior forward Reed Foster.
Salem also had four of its players chosen: senior captain and goaltender Brett Harring, senior forward Danny Heck and junior forwards Sam Petri and Derek Zwiercan. In addition, Ted Hanley of the Witches was chosen as the NEC Coach of the Year for piloting the squad to its first playoff berth in seven seasons.
Swampscott saw three of its forwards, junior Ryan Cresta and freshmen Ryan Donnelly and Mike Johnson, picked for the team.
The other NEC all-stars include junior goalie Ray Feeley, senior defenseman Steve Goddard, senior forwards Johnny Orlando and Chris Page, junior forward Pat Todisco and freshman forward Charlie Page of Winthrop; senior defensemen Brett Erelli, Pat Finnigan and Eric Brazell, junior forward Mark Brazell and junior forward Tony Uva of Lynn; senior forwards Casey Noyes and Matt Lane, as well as sophomore defenseman Steven Tettoni of Gloucester; and Revere seniors Marco Mazarelli at forward and Brandon Mastropietro on defense.
The NEC All-Star Game will be played Saturday at Salem State, with a Skills Competition at 1 p.m. and the game itself at 2 p.m. Players from Beverly, Danvers, Gloucester, Salem and Swampscott will make up one team and wear white jerseys while members of Marblehead, Winthrop, Peabody, Lynn and Revere will combine for the other squad and wear dark jerseys.