By HockomockSports.com Staff
2022-2023 Hockomock Girls Hockey Preview
2021-2022 Record: 18-7-0
2021-2022 Finish: Reached Div. 2 Final
Coach: Nikki Petrich
Canton has won four of the five Hockomock titles since league play began, including three in a row, and last winter the Bulldogs went to their fourth state title game in the past six seasons. It was an incredible stretch of success under Dennis Aldrich, who stepped down in the off-season, and the Bulldogs don’t look ready to slow down anytime soon. First-year coach Nikki Petrich, a former Northeastern University standout, comes to Canton after being an associate head coach for Austin Prep, helping them win a pair of Div. 1 state titles, and she has an experienced roster aiming for another trip to the Garden in March.
The Bulldogs can count on plenty of senior leadership this winter, starting up front with forwards Audrey Koen and Ellie Bohane. Koen is the team’s top returning scorer with 12 goals and eight assists last year and will be a focal point in the attack. Juniors Maggie Dailey, Lilah Spinelli, and Anna Lehan also contributed important minutes and important goals during last year’s playoff run and could be ready to step into bigger roles this season. As always, Canton can reload with talented underclassmen and freshmen Christina Curran, Abby Stock, and Izzy Cusack could also feature in a deep forward group.
Defense has long been a strength for Canton and it starts in goal with senior Carolyn Durand. The four-year starter has been one of the best shot stoppers in the state since her freshman year and gives the team a strong foundation in its own zone. Senior Maya Battista is another four-year starter and has emerged as a force on the blue line, both with her work in the defensive zone as well as her goals on the other end of the ice. Juniors Tori Carr and Devan Spinale will be back on the blue line with freshmen Kayleigh Koen and Georgia Campbell part of a talented rookie class that could contribute right away.
“We are looking to build off of the success of last year and continue to make sure that every single girl in our program has an incredible experience representing their town, high school, and family,” Petrich said. With a senior captain in net, a senior captain on the blue line, and two senior captains leading the way for your forwards, our team is going to compete every single game. A strong freshman class rounds out what is truly a team with extensive experience playing in meaningful games come the end of February.”
2021-2022 Record: 6-11-4
2021-2022 Finish: Reached Div. 2 Round of 32
Coach: Mike Lubin
Franklin is the only team other than Canton to have won a Hockomock League title and the Panthers come into the season with a more experienced, and deeper, roster to try and get back on top. Former assistant Mike Lubin has taken over as head coach after the retirement of longtime coach Margie Burke and he has a balanced lineup to work with this winter.
The Panthers will be hoping to be more solid on the defensive end of the ice this season, building on the structure they have created in all three zones. Senior Shaw Downing is a four-year varsity player and a dynamic skater along the blue line, not only being sure on the puck in her own zone but also capable of carrying the play into the attack. Junior Lindsay Dennett continues to improve each season and sophomore goalie Izzy Brown is coming off an impressive rookie campaign between the pipes.
Sophomore Julia Flynn was the team’s leading scorer last year and she is back to power the Franklin offense. Senior Lindsay Atkinson is also back, after missing all of last winter with an injury. Atkinson had a big sophomore season and will be a huge addition to the top line. Senior forwards Dana Stott and Molly Hurley bring two-way strength to the forward line.
“We’re a close group with great leadership and a good mix of young talent,” Lubin said. “We’re all excited to get the season started and build on our strong team chemistry from last year.”
2021-2022 Record: 3-16-1 (formerly Mansfield/Oliver Ames)
2021-2022 Finish: Reached Div. 1 Round of 32
Coach: Jamie Mullin
The biggest co-op team in the Hockomock League is getting bigger. The Mansfield/Oliver Ames Warriors, which also featured skaters from Foxboro, now includes players from Attleboro, Milford, North Attleboro, and Taunton and will be going by the name of Hockomock Stars.
Jamie Mullen returns for her second year at the helm of the program and now has some more players to work into her lineup. The Stars lost some key players to graduation, including longtime goalie Jess Widdop and speedy forward Sam Ledin, and also have to replace the production of last year’s leading scorer Kylie O’Keefe (20 points). Leading the offense will be a pair of Mansfield juniors: Cammy Shenteler, fresh off a 7-goal, 9-assist season, and Maeve Anastasia, who totaled 11 points with six goals last year.
North Attleboro has four players in the mix with junior Ava O’Dwyer, sophomore Grace Cabeceiras, and freshmen Brittany Nordbeck and Alana Rice. Attleboro (Emily Davignon, Avery Drainville, McKenzie Sullivan) has three players, Taunton (Hannah Albert, Kendell Scheralis) has two, and Milford has one (Lindsay Casman).
Foxboro’s Mya Waras (five points) and Mansfield’s Ava Adams (five points) will also be key pieces in the attack. Foxboro junior Macy Quinn is back to anchor the blue line for the Stars while Davignon will be between the pipes.
2021-2022 Record: 18-5-0
2021-2022 Finish: Reached Div. 2 Round of 32
Coach: Ken Assad
King Philip is coming off a really strong year. The Warriors won 18 games last winter but saw the season come to an end in the opening round of the state tournament. KP scored 93 goals in 23 games in 2021-22 but graduated the bulk of one of the state’s top scoring lines, so will need new players to step into bigger roles in search of the program’s first Hock title.
While the top scoring line may look a little different this winter, KP does return its top goal scorer. Junior Kelly Holmes is back to lead the offense and is one of the most dynamic players in the league. Senior Katarina Precobb and junior Nicole McDonald will add more punch to the top line this season. The Warriors will have decent depth in the attacking zone, with senior Sydney Cloutier, junior Rylie Ryan, and freshmen Cam O’Shea and Kate McGann each ready to provide an attacking punch. Eighth graders Tayla McDuff, Rylan McKillop, Ella Morgan, Erin Steck, and Molly Murphy should all get their chance to contribute.
In the defensive zone, KP will have plenty of experience to try and keep other teams out. Seniors Brielle Hearon, Mara Boldy, and Emma Sullivan will all be back on the blue line, providing leadership and physicality to slow down the opposition. Freshmen Lydia Maxwell and Grace Lehan-Allen both saw time as eighth graders and will build on that important year of varsity action. Eighth-grader Calleigh Brady should see time in defense this year. Goalie is another position of strength for the Warriors with senior Mallory Johnston in her third year as a starter and classmate Haley Bright backing her up.
“I never call it a rebuilding year,” said KP coach Ken Assad. “With the returning players and newcomers, I believe with hard work and not taking any nights off we can be in the hunt for the Hockomock title and get into the tournament.”
2021-2022 Finish: Missed postseason
Coach: Chad Kelley
Stoughton/Sharon continues to be a young program that is building up its numbers. With only one senior and two juniors in the program, the Black Knights will be focusing on youth and trying to build a foundation for future seasons. After a close loss in the season opener, Stoughton/Sharon continues to find ways to stay competitive even with a smaller roster of just 14 players.
Eighth-grader Sarah Scappaticci from Sharon will be the starting goalie this season. She made 34 stops in the opener against Cambridge and is already showing that she is a skilled player between the pipes. Brockton junior Molly Corvino will be one of the leaders in the defensive zone, along with classmate Samantha Calapai. Both players are solid in their own zone but can push the team into the attack. Stoughton freshman Addison Strunk will also be one of the defenders in the top two pairings.
Stoughton’s Ava Buckley is the lone senior on the team. The Assumption-commit will be the focal point for the Black Knights on the offensive end of the ice. Sharon eighth grader Ella Cummings has a lot of skill on the puck and already opened her varsity account with a goal against Cambridge. Sharon sophomores Peri Rodman and Heather Kelly and Stoughton sophomore Leila Uchani return to the forward lines. Stoughton freshmen Julia Monaghan, Meghan McGowan, Amanda Reid, and Stoughton eighth graders Nya’Lia Lindsey and Julia Henein will give the Black Knights depth up front.
“We are a young team with only one senior and two juniors in our program,” said head coach Chad Kelley. “Ava Buckley and Molly Corvino are our captains for this season. Both Ava and Molly have been tremendous with our young group. They are great examples for others to model.”