SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

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January 30, 2014

Kick Saves: Junior captains driving Masconomet through change

(Continued)

From their point of view, that’s all part of wearing the C.

“I remember being a freshman and looking up to the captains and to be that person is a really cool feeling,” said Valletti, who figures she started skating before she could walk when she was on the ice with a figure skating sister.

The Chieftains are back at it Saturday against Leominster/Gardner. It’s a chance to get back in the win column after four days off to recharge their batteries and iron out some of the kinks. A team blending together players from Masco, Hamilton-Wenham, Newburyport, Georgetown, Triton and Amesbury figues to be a second half team, as they get to know each other and develop chemistry.

For the players, the recipe for success is as simple as it gets.

“I think the biggest thing is working hard. A lot of teams can fall apart under the stress of the middle of the season, whether its mid-terms or injuries or anything like that. I’m striving to make sure we stay a happy and healthy team.”

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It was a momentous week for the Winthrop/Lynn English co-op team, which toppled St. Mary’s and followed that up with last night’s 1-0 win over Beverly/Danvers at Talbot Rink in Gloucester. The win puts the Bulldogs in control of the Northeastern Hockey League, as they’re now 4-0 in league play. The Panthers (10-2-1 overall) are now 3-1 in NHL action and will need to beat Winthrop/English on Monday February 10 in order to claim a share of the league title for the second straight season.

The Panthers, meanwhile, are suddenly looking for goals after averaging nearly seven per game over the first six weeks of the season. Beverly was shutout for the first time last night, scored just two against top-ranked Duxbury on Monday in a tie, and managed only one goal in a win over Lexington last week.

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