”With a Little Help From my Friends”
There’s a reason the Falcons surprised many Northeastern Conference hockey watchers a year ago to capture the league title. They played selfless, passionate hockey and bought into head coach Kevin Brown’s system of limiting shots against while burying the chances they created. Granted, there is some very good top six talent among the forwards (captains Rob Buchanan and Joe Strangie, along with A.J. Couto, Jay Calcagno, Matt Flynn and former junior hockey player Adam Merry) and capable D-men such as Mike Disciullo, Kevin Anderson, Shea Doyle, Ryan Cassidy and Alec Littlefield in front of sophomore goalies Alex Taylor and Jay Joyce. But to once again exceed expectations, they’ll have to continue buying what Brown’s selling without any one player thinking they could, or should, do more than their own job. It’s about relying on their teammates that will ultimately allow the Blue-and-White to achieve their team goals.
To the Garden, that is. And why not? The upperclassmen on this team, like forwards Ty Bates, Ian Maag and Tommy Koopman in addition to blueliners Liam Gillis and Zac Cuzner, know the routine and what it takes to fight and scrap and battle through a tough regular season schedule and an even tougher postseason slate. Having said that, would anyone be surprised if the Headers found a way to be skating on the Garden ice on St. Patrick’s Day Sunday, aiming for their second Division 3 state title in three seasons? There’s plenty of depth, including Joe Newall, Trevor Jones, Dean Fader and Cam Rowe and the very dependable Myles Barry between the pipes. Newcomers such as senior forward Trip Franzese (came back to Marblehead High), junior goalkeeper Harrison Young (back from St. John’s Prep) and freshmen twins Matt and Kyle Koopman should make the Headers even more dangerous.