SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

March 21, 2014

Salem News Boys Hockey 2013-14 all-star team


The Salem News

---- — SALEM NEWS 2013-14 BOYS HOCKEY ALL-STAR TEAM

PLAYER OF THE YEAR

CONNOR IRVING

Beverly, Senior

Center

If someone had a better ending to his high school hockey career than Connor Irving, we’d like to see it.

Beverly’s 5-foot-6 speedster did it all in leading the Panthers to their first state championship this winter. He led the North Shore in both goals (24) and scoring (55 points). He had eight goals and two assists in four playoff games, including a 4-point, 1-assist masterpiece in the Division 2 North final against Tewksbury. He finished his four-year career as Beverly’s new all-time leading scorer with 196 points (74 goals, a school record 122 assists), besting the previous record by 24 points.

There’s more. Irving had a pair of 5-game games this season, one 4-point game and eight 3-point outings. The Panther captain scored three times against Gloucester and, combined with his 4-goal game vs. Tewksbury, was the only North Shore player to record multiple hat tricks this season. He also had a four-assist contest against Peabody, led the region with five game-winning goals, and scored at least one goal in each of Beverly’s four postseason games.

Then, of course, was the biggest play he made all season, scoring the game-winning goal early in the third period of Beverly’s 2-1 victory over Medfield in the Division 2 North title game at TD Garden in Boston.

The godson of Beverly head coach Bobby Gilligan, Irving was named to the Northeastern Conference’s All-Conference team for the third straight season, was a Shriners Game selection and will play in this weekend’s North/South all-star game at the DCU Center in Worcester.

Planning on doing a post-graduate year at either Berkshire, Tilton or Kents Hill upon his graduation from Beverly High this June, Irving would like to play college hockey. He thanks his father, Kenny, who has coached him throughout his life and has helped make him into the player he is today.

NICK ALBANO

Beverly, Junior

Defenseman

Offensively skilled blue liner led the North Shore in assists with 37 ... Second on his team in scoring with 45 points ... Set new single-season record for points by a BHS defenseman ... Tied Irving for the team lead in playoff points with 10 ... Nine of those came on assists ... Terrific on-ice vision and skating ability ... NEC All-Conference selection ... Three-time NEC all-star ... Had assists on all five goals in a 5-1 quarterfinal playoff win over Lincoln-Sudbury ... Has 19 goals, 56 assists and 75 points in his three-year career ... Wants to play college lacrosse at a Division 1 school.

TIM BIRARELLI

Beverly, Junior

Goaltender

Backstopped the Panthers to their first state title by going a remarkable 20-1-1 this winter ... Stopped 339 shots while surrendering just 26 goals ... NEC All-Conference choice ... Pitched five shutouts ... Had 1.26 goals-against average and .929 save percentage ... Three-year varsity totals: 46-7-3, 1.53 GAA, .921 save percentage, 14 shutouts ... Holds single season and career BHS marks for wins, goals-against, save percentage, shutouts and fewest goals allowed ... Did not lose a home game the last two seasons.

MIKE CASTRO

Masconomet, Junior

Center

Powered Chieftains’ first line with a dozen goals, 15 assists and 27 points to tie for second-best on the club ... Cape Ann League all-star ... Hails from Middleton ... Fired home three goals in home victory over Saugus ... Had two goals vs. both Triton and Pentucket ... Scored in first round playoff win over Revere ... Thinking about doing a post-graduate year at prep school following his graduation in 2015 ... Finished career with 48 points ... Holds 3.8 grade point average.

JIMMY CURRIER

St. John’s Prep, Senior

Right Wing

Eagles’ captain from Middleton led the team in scoring with 35 points (11 goals, 24 assists) ... Terrific skater and acceleration ... Excellent stickhandler and crafty along the walls ... Tying goal with five seconds to play vs. Xaverian completed a 5-point night ... Catholic Conference all-star ... Also had five points in season-opening win vs. Bishop Fenwick ... Finished with four points on two other occasions Had game-winning goals vs. Framingham and Wakefield ... Shriners All-Star Game selection ... Will play junior hockey ... Says ex-SJP teammate Brian Pinho showed him how to be the best leader he could be ... Graduates with 18-38-56 totals.

GRAHAM DOHERTY

Beverly, Senior

Center

Skilled pivot was third on the team in scoring with 33 points ... Led state champions with regular season goals (17) ... Had a four-goal game and five points total in a win over Gloucester ... Had both strikes in a 2-0 victory over Newburyport ... Also had game-winning goals against Marblehead, Winthrop and Methuen ... NEC all-star ... Outstanding student has 4.4 grade point average and is 12th in his senior class of 315 students ... Career numbers: 42-34-76 ... Has been accepted to Northeastern, Syracuse, UConn and Penn State ... Thanks his father Michael for not only introducing him to sports, but supporting him every step of the way along his athletic journey.

MARK ETHERINGTON

St. John’s Prep, Senior

Center

Danvers native was pleasant surprise for the Eagles this winter as its top line pivot ... Had just one career point coming into the year, but finished second on the club in scoring with 11 goals, 14 assists and 25 points ... Had two goals vs. eventual state champion Malden Catholic ... Achieved rare feat by being named captain by team coaches midway through the season for his on and off-ice leadership ... Had three assists vs. St. John’s Shrewsbury ... Also had 3-point night vs. Catholic Conference rival Xaverian ... Outstanding 4.1 GPA.

MATT FLYNN

Danvers, Senior

Left Wing

Gritty forward would do whatever it took to help his team win, whether it was contribute offensively, hound an opposing player or backcheck until his legs burned ... Captain finished as Danvers’ leading scorer with 10 goals, 12 assists and 22 points ... Had a goal and three assists in 4-2 playoff win vs. Amesbury ... Also had four points in huge late season win at Acton-Boxboro ... Hat trick at Gloucester ... NEC all-star ... Looking at UMaine, New Hampshire and High Point (N.C.) for college ... Says his father Kevin has been a key component in his hockey success.

STEPHEN GANLEY

Danvers, Junior

Defenseman

Physical blue liner used his 6-foot, 200-pound frame to his fullest advantage ... NEC all-star ... Led all Falcon defensemen in goals (5), assists (9) and points (14) ... Fourth on his team in scoring ... Averaged better than 30 minutes of ice time a night in the second half of the season ... Had game-winning goal in 3-2 season opening victory over Winthrop ... Scored game-winning goal as Danvers clinched playoff berth on the final day of the season, a 2-0 victory over Saugus ... Had playoff goal in win over Amesbury.

LIAM GILLIS

Marblehead, Senior

Defenseman

Captain could pack a wallop at 6-foot and 225 pounds to unsuspecting forwards who dared venture too far into the Headers’ zone ... Second among all North Shore rearguards in scoring with 6 goals, 19 assists and 25 points ... Had a pair of goals, including the game-winner, in a 4-3 season opening win over Gloucester ... NEC All-Conference ... Had two assists in Marblehead’s 4-1 quarterfinal win over second-seeded North Reading ... Finished with 13-45-58 career numbers ... Looking to play college football at Bentley, St. Anselm or Endicott ... Thanks his grandfather for attending all of his games and continually giving him positive advice.

JOE GRIFFIN

Masconomet, Junior

Left Wing/Defense

Middleton resident began the season on defense but was moved up to the Chieftains’ first line because of his outstanding offensive abilities ... Led Masconomet in scoring with 32 points, including a team-high 22 assists ... Cape Ann League All-League selection ... Owner of a 3.9 grade point average ... Had a pair of assists in two playoff games ... Huge game late in the season vs. Amesbury with two goals and three assists ... Had three points two nights earlier vs. Bishop Fenwick ... Thinking of doing a post-graduate year or playing junior hockey.

BRETT HARRING

Salem, Senior

Goaltender

Battled early season injuries and came back to post the best numbers of his four-year varsity career ... Witches’ captain went 6-5-3 between the pipes with a 2.20 goals-against average and .931 save percentage (second-best in the area) ... Guided Salem to a playoff berth for the first time in seven years ... Had shutouts over East Boston (3-0), Somerville (1-0) and Rockport (4-0) ... Had season-high 41 saves in win over Somerville, then another 39 vs. the Highlanders in the rematch ... Three-time NEC all-star was also team MVP ... Finished with more than 2,000 career saves ... Will attend either Mass. Maritime Academy or Maine Maritime Academy.

DANNY HECK

Salem, Senior

Center

Always seemed to be the guy who came up with big goal, huge blocked shot or key hit at critical times during Salem’s drive towards the playoffs ... Northeastern Conference all-star ... Finished with nine goals and eight assists ... Had a hat trick in rout over O’Bryant ... Scored game-winning tally in clutch 3-2 victory over Revere ... Also had game-winner in 3-1 triumph against Swampscott ... Potted two goals in another win against Swampscott ... Looking at San Diego State University.

MATT KOOPMAN

Marblehead, Sophomore

Center

Speedy and skilled pivot anchored Marblehead’s top line ... Tied his linemate and brother, Tom, for team scoring lead (39 points) ... Led Headers in goals with 19 ... Tied for second on the North Shore with four game-winning goals (vs. Gloucester, Swampscott, Lynn and Danvers) ... NEC all-star ... Thrice had three assists in a game ... Had five points in a win at Gloucester in Cape Ann Savings Bank Tournament ... Also had four-point nights against both Lynn and Swampscott ... Has 30-37-67 totals in two varsity seasons.

TOM KOOPMAN

Marblehead, Senior

Left Wing

Earned entry into the school’s 100-Point Club this season in a win over archrival Swampscott ... Finished eighth on MHS all-time scoring list with 107 points (42 goals, 65 assists) ... Tied brother Matt for team lead in scoring with 39 ... Led Headers in assists (23) ... Captain was also NEC All-Conference pick ... Had five-point night vs. Gloucester ... Notched hat trick vs. Peabody ... Had three assists in two separate games vs. Gloucester ... Holds 3.75 grade point average ... Wants to study business in college ... Older brother Ben, cousins Jake Kulevich and Alex Perry, and grandfather Alex Kulevich have been his biggest influences.

MITCH NEKOROSKI

Masconomet, Senior

Goaltender

Made his final season between the Chieftains’ pipes one to remember by going 15-4-2 ... Guided team to a share of the Cape Ann League championship ... Goals-against average of 1.62 was second-best in the area ... Finished with .915 save percentage ... Had a 33 saves in a 4-1 triumph over Newburyport ... Season-high 36 stops in a 3-1 win against Amesbury ... CAL all-star ... Earned 2-0 shutout over Lynnfield on Senior Night ... Will study film at Emerson ... Says his father and Mike Buckley have constantly supported him and taught him the right way to play.

MIKE VADALA

Peabody, Senior

Center

Averaged a point per game while leading the Tanners in scoring for the second straight season with 7 goals and 13 assists ... Team captain ... NEC all-star ... Named Shriners Classic all-star ... Peabody’s team MVP ... Had season-high three assists in a victory over Swampscott ... Plans on attending New Hampton (N.H.) for a post-graduate year ... Carries 3.4 grade point average ... Thanks his father for dedicating his time to helping him become a better athlete.

HONORABLE MENTION

Beverly — Matt Hamor, Sr. D; Sean Munzing, Sr. D; Jack Morency, Sr. D; Jake Straw, Sr. RW; J.J. Bachini, Sr. LW; Ryan Santo, Sr. LW, Jesse MacLaughlin, Jr. RW; Kevin Lally, Sr. C.

Danvers — Kevin Hodgkins, Sr. C; Jay Calcagno, Sr. RW; Alex Taylor, Jr. G; Ryan Cassidy, Sr. D.

Peabody — Andrew Bisconti, Sr. LW; Derek DeMild, Sr. RW; Matt Pino, Jr. D.

Salem Matt Jalbert, Sr. RW; Jackson Jennings, Sr. D; Sam Petri, Jr. LW; Mike Gillis, Fr. RW; Derek Zwiercan, Jr. RW.

Marblehead — Myles Barry, Sr. G; Harrison Young, Sr. G; Kyle Koopman, Soph. D; Braden Haley, Fr. RW; Erik Powers, Sr. LW; Dean Fader, Sr. C; Tim Kalinowski, Soph. RW; Trevor Gelineau, Sr. D.

Swampscott —Ryan Cresta, Jr. RW; Mike Donnelly, Fr. C; Mike Johnson, Fr. LW.

Masconomet —Tyler Costello, Sr. D/F; Jared Brann, Sr. C; Jeff Panella, Sr. D; Vitaly Knowles, Jr. LW; Jake Esposito, Sr. RW; Jake Jesi, Sr. D; Nick Aleckna, Sr. LW; Joe Emma, Sr. RW.

St. John’s Prep —Ean Mendeszoon, Sr. D; Teddy McNamara, Jr. LW; Nick Latham, Jr. LW; Ryan Byrne, Sr. D; Evan Leclerc, Sr. D; Tyler Scearbo, Jr. RW; Zach Laramie, Fr. G.

Bishop Fenwick —Nick Finan, Sr. RW; Brian Corcoran, Sr. LW.

Pingree —Shawn Khachadourian, Sr. LW; Chris Usseglio, Sr. C; Mike Riley, Soph. RW.