Swampscott can thank its wealth of veteran leadership on the blue line for much of the success it hopes to have this winter. Chris Dandreo, Chris Carman and Trevor Massey are a trio that should cause fits for any forward. Scoring forwards such as Corey Carmody, Nunzio Morretti, Robert Serino, Jake Finlay, Griffin Hunt and Ryan Cresta are back in the fold, too.
A two-win season a year ago in which many of its players learned hard lessons about playing Division 1 hockey could pay big dividends for Bishop Fenwick. The Crusaders return their No. 1 goalie, junior Pat O’Leary; three battle-tested defensemen in P.J. Usalis, Jake Brennan and Mark Todisco; and six of their top nine forwards from a year ago: seniors Drew Thibodeau Mike Napolitano, as well as juniors Nick Finan, Nick Coccolutto, Brian Corcoran and Brian Bassett.
Big things are expected at St. John’s Prep, too, as the Eagles want to return to the Super 8 for the third straight season — and this time, win it. Start up front with Providence College-bound center and captain Brian Pinho; add talents like Tyler Bird, Jack McCarthy, Andrew Brandano, Cam Shaheen, James Brightney, Paul Crehan, Ean Mendeszoon et. al., you can see why many see the Eagles soaring again in the coming months.
With two one-goal setbacks in its first two games, Masconomet could certainly use a break starting tonight against Newburyport (7:50 p.m.) at home.
Junior forward Nick Aleckna, unfortunately, caught the wrong kind of break just minutes before the team’s season opener last Thursday against Pentucket.
As Masconomet took the ice at the Veterans Memorial Rink in Haverhill that night after the Zamboni had made a clean sheet of ice, Aleckna took “about five strides into our zone” according to head coach Andrew Jackson before he slid into the net, which was elevated for the ice resurfacing but hadn’t been readjusted quite yet. He slammed into the net and broke his collarbone, and his return is up in the air.