How does the mind process, and separate, the truly great moments in any given school sports season?
You’re literally being asked to collate tens of thousands of moments witnessed over the 2012-13 athletics calendar, file away those special few that truly left an impression on you, then choose the most everlasting.
It’s not easy.
But we’re professionals here at The Salem News, and we have a job to do for you, our reading public. So here, among the multitude of thrilling moments and remarkable victories, are the half-dozen memories we’ll carry with us for all of our journalistic days.
MORRETTI’S GOLDEN GOAL GIVES SWAMPSCOTT HOCKEY NORTH TITLE (March 9)
By PHIL STACEY
Confession time: did I think the Swampscott High hockey team would win its first ever North title this winter and eventually play for the Division 3 state title at TD Garden? Nope.
In fact, with about four minutes to play in the North final and the Big Blue down by a goal, I turned to colleague Matt Williams and muttered something along the lines of, ‘They had a great season, winning their first playoff game in 44 years and then beating Marblehead. No shame in losing to these guys.’
Little did I know there was still magic to be played out on the Stoneham Arena ice surface that Saturday.
With just 2 minutes and 13 seconds left to salvage their season, senior Chris Carman tied things up for Swampscott with a short side snipe; the play followed a time out, a huge blocked shot in the defensive end by Robert Serino and an up-ice pass from Trevor Massey to Carman for the game-tying tally. The Swampscott bench and stands were going berserk.
But the best was yet to come. Continuing to put heavy pressure on the Bucs as the seconds wound down in regulation, Chris Carmody got the puck in the offensive zone and slid a cross-crease pass to linemate Nunzio Morretti. The junior, known affectionately as ‘Nose Face’ after one of his favorite Boston Bruins (Brad Marchand), took the pass and rifled it past the goaltender with just 6.2 seconds remaining for a 3-2 victory. It was the biggest goal, and biggest win (at the time) in Swampscott hockey history.