, Salem, MA


January 9, 2013

The Blue Line Report: History Repeating Itself

Can the Panthers hockey team follow in football squad's footsteps?

Jack Morency is the answer to a terrific North Shore sports trivia question.

Q: Who is the only two sport student-athlete on the North Shore to have NOT lost a game in any varsity sport during the 2012-13 school year?

An integral part of the club as a junior defenseman, Morency and the Beverly High hockey team take a perfect 7-0 record into tonight’s game at Gloucester. He was also part of the historic Panther football squad that went 13-0 this past fall en route to the school’s second Super Bowl championship in the last three years. Twenty 20 games played, 20 wins thus far.

That got us to thinking about another question:

Can we accurately make any comparisons between what the BHS footballers were able to do — and what the BHS pucksters might do?

The answer, surprisingly, is yes.

Look at some of the similarities:

* The football team started the season off with a bang by destroying their opponents right out of the gate. The hockey team has been on a similar path of destruction, outscoring its foes through seven games, 33-5.

* The football team had amazing depth, with the ability to plug players into various roles with virtually no dropoff. The hockey team is also blessed with terrific depth; there are players who aren’t skating among the top nine forwards who would likely earn big minutes as top six guys elsewhere.

* The offensive machine that was the Beverly football team was scary good with Brendan Flaherty, Kenny Pierce, Dom Abate, Isiah White, et. al. The firewagon offense that is the Beverly hockey team is equally potent, with the likes of Andrew Irving, Connor Irving, Graham Doherty, Jake Straw, Ryan Santo, Teddy Leathersich, Tom Lindgren, Brendan Boyle, Nick and Jesse McLaughlin, and so on.

* What Flaherty and Pierce were to running and catching the ball out of the Beverly backfield, the Irving cousins are to ripping the twine for the Beverly forward corps. All great teams need a standout player or two to produce offensively when the time dictates it, and both clubs are blessed in that regard.

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