Remmes, KP Hang On To Earn A Point at Franklin

Evan Remmes
Evan Remmes made 36 saves to help King Philip snag a point at Franklin on Sunday night. (Josh Perry/HockomockSports.com)

By Josh Perry, Managing Editor

FRANKLIN, Mass. – The Panthers have been on a roll in Hockomock League play. Franklin came into Sunday night’s game with King Philip at Pirelli Veterans Memorial Rink having won 14 straight games in the league, including a perfect 10-0 last year and the first three games of this season’s league schedule.

But as the clock was winding down in the third period, the Warriors looked poised to end that remarkable win streak. With 6:23 left to play, Joey Blasie pounced on a rebound to knock the puck home and finish one of Franklin’s numerous scoring opportunities. The goal canceled out Sam Ross’ first period goal and sent both teams home with a point.

“Evan kept us in it; kept us with the lead,” said KP coach Paul Carlow. “This is probably one of the best public school programs in the state year in, year out, so anytime that you can get a point against them you’ll take it.”

Franklin coach Chris Spillane was blunt in his assessment of the game. He explained, “Our boys learned real quick that you don’t win games just by showing up. King Philip showed up and worked their a—s off and we didn’t.”

The Panthers came out sluggish in the first period. Passing was erratic, the skating was slow, and the hosts struggled at times to control the puck. KP took advantage.

Jeremy Smith sent the first warning shot with a blast from the point that rang the post off a face-off win by Nick Connor. Two minutes later, Matt Smith slid a pass across the crease to a wide open Jacob Kelly but the junior forward’s shot from point-blank range was chipped over the bar.

With 8:05 left in the period, KP made the Panthers pay for the slow start. As Blasie raced from the box back into play, Ross found himself with the puck on his stick on the right side of goal and flicked his shot on net. The puck slipped through a screen and under Nick Jasinski’s pads for the opening goal; the first of the season for the senior.

“No bigger time than to get one against Franklin, right?” asked Carlow. He added, “I think when you get power plays, you have to take advantage. We’ve been working on it and the boys got one.”

Franklin had its chances as well. Remmes made 36 saves on the night and he was increasingly put under pressure as the game wore on. He made a quick reaction kick save to rob Thomas Sicchio in the first and then somehow managed to get a piece of a Jake Downie shot from the edge of the crease; sitting on the puck and keeping it out.

In the third period, just a minute before Franklin tied it, Remmes kept KP in front by getting a toe on a chance for Jeremy Miller who was left all alone by a great pass across the front of goal by Adam Assad.

“He played outstanding,” said Carlow. “You get that out of seniors in a big game. He played well against Canton and he played well tonight.”

In addition to the play of the KP goaltender, Franklin also missed a series of good chances. Brendan O’Rielly had a chance on an open net after Remmes stopped Tyler Oakes’s shot from the point in the first but smashed his shot off the bar. Luke Downie had a similar opportunity in the second on a rebound, again from an Oakes shot, but his effort bounced away off the far post.

“We had plenty of chances to score goals and guys don’t bear down to finish the easy goals and it’s frustrating to watch,” said Spillane. “We missed a lot of open nets, a lot of rebounds, a lot of shots were right at the goaltender when we had open ice.”

The Panthers outshot KP 16-4 in the second period, but the Warriors still created chances. Matt Smith skated in alone but his shot missed the net at the short side. As the period wound down, he had another good opportunity, this time from the right circle, and again went for Jasinski’s blocker side but again it went wide. In the opening 30 seconds of the third, Smith set up Ross in the slot but Jasinski (16 saves) was positioned well to clock the shot.

The pressure would eventually tell for the Panthers. Luke Downie collected the puck behind Remmes and tried to skate in front and score but the goalie kicked it away. Unfortunately for KP, the rebound went straight to Blasie and finally Franklin had someone finish.

Spillane said, “I give them a little credit that they worked hard to grab a point and we battled, but these are games that they have to come out and play 45 minutes. If they don’t play 45 minutes then this is the result against any team in our league.

With 3:20 left, Franklin nearly won the game when O’Reilly’s shot slipped past Remmes and sat right on the line. Cory Lombardo saved his goalie and his team by clearing the puck away. Franklin’s momentum was stymied as twice in the final 5:30 the Panthers were forced to go on the penalty kill.

“They were just unnecessary penalties that put you on the kill and then you’re wasting guys legs as the clock is ticking down,” Spillane said.

The Warriors scored five unanswered goals in the third period on Wednesday to come from behind and beat Taunton. Carlow believes that energy and confidence carried over and helped the Warriors grab a point at Franklin.

“I think that third period against Taunton coming back from a four-goal deficit, a period like that can turn your season,” said Carlow. “I think the guys came out tonight and played off that and gave us three good periods.”

Spillane was clearly disappointed with his team’s performance. After so much success in recent seasons, this may be a wake-up call for an atypically inexperienced roster. When Spillane was asked about it, he chuckled.

“Tomorrow morning they have a wake up call at 7 a.m., I can tell you that,” he said. “We will have a good skate.”

On Wednesday, Franklin (5-3-2, 3-0-1) will play host to divisional rival North Attleboro in a huge game in the Kelley-Rex standings. King Philip (5-4-1, 3-1-1) will travel to Aleixo Arena to face Attleboro.

Josh Perry can be contacted at JoshPerry@hockomocksports.com and followed on Twitter at @Josh_Perry10.

King Philip Scores Six Straight Goals to Stun Taunton

By Jarett Leonard, HockomockSports.com Contributor
TAUNTON, Mass. – A late goal in the second period sparked King Philip to a huge third period, as the Warriors erased a four-goal deficit with six unanswered tallies to top Taunton, 6-4.
Down 4-0 late in the second period, Matt Smith redirected a shot from Clay Geuss into the net to get King Philip on the board, a goal that gave the Warriors hope heading into the third.
“I think it woke the guys up,” King Philip head coach Paul Carlow said. “We definitely needed that. We certainly were not playing as well as we could at that point and we needed something.”
KP then exploded for three goals within the first four minutes of the third period to tie the game. Nick Connor carried the puck from the right corner to bottom of the circle, and a wrist shot snuck through to the goal line, where Collin Cooke finished it off. Just 38 seconds later, Richard Lucente netted a wrist shot from the high slot, and about a minute after that, with King Philip skating with a two man advantage, Geuss added one of his own to even the score.
“Once we got those two goals that really turned the momentum of the game,” Carlow said. “It gave the kids some confidence and they started skating.”
Cooke’s second goal of the game was the game winner, a rebound from a Jeremy Smith shot that gave KP its first lead of the night while the Warriors were on the power play. Jacob Kelly added some insurance for the Warriors with a drive from the left half wall that found the net. KP outshot Taunton 42-31 in the game but had a distinct 21-6 advantage in the third period alone.
“They played an outstanding third period,” Carlow said. “It took a couple goals to get the confidence and that momentum swing, and then once we had it, it was just a matter of time.”
Zack Albert scored the first goal of the game for the Tigers, burying one on the doorstep after a Nick Terry shot was deflected onto his tape. Tyler Pietrzyk then went to work to extend Taunton’s lead, scoring a hat trick in the second period alone. Pietrzyk potted rebounds on shots from Zack Albert and David Perry and then finished a breakaway set up by a Mike Volkmann stretch pass.
“We knew Taunton was 7-3 going in with some really good forwards,” Carlow said. “We knew what they were coming in. I felt like it was going to be a 50-50 game. I felt like we were very evenly matched and it was going to come down to who wanted it more.”
In addition to the goal, Geuss had two assists for King Philip while Connor, Lucente and Jeremy Smith each had one helper. Evan Remmes made 27 saves in net for the win.
Pietrzyk added an assist to his hat trick for a four point night for Taunton, extending his Division 2 South points lead. Brother Trevor Pietrzyk, Terry, Albert, Perry and Volkmann had an assist each.
King Philip (5-4, 3-1 Hockomock) will now look to build off its third period effort with a trip to Franklin on Sunday night at 6 p.m. Taunton, now 7-4 overall and 1-3 in the league, will face Attleboro on Saturday afternoon.
“It’s our first time we’ve won two straight,” Carlow said. “That third period tonight, I hope it keeps us going in the right direction.”

King Philip Cashes In At Right Times Against Stoughton

King Philip senior defenseman Clay Geuss handles the puck through the neutral zone in the second period. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSport.com)
King Philip senior defenseman Clay Geuss handles the puck through the neutral zone in the second period. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSport.com)

By Ryan Lanigan, Editor-in-Chief
BROCKTON, Mass. – King Philip scored at all the right times and skated away with a 6-1 win over Stoughton at Asiaf Arena on Saturday afternoon.
With the game tied 1-1 in the first period, King Philip scored the all important go ahead goal with less than four minutes to play in the opening frame, then created a two goal cushion less than six minutes into the second and iced the game with three third period goals.
“I think we were outplaying them to start and they got a flukey goal but we rebounded and got the next one,” King Philip head coach Paul Carlow said. “And then we got out of the period with the lead. I thought we outplayed them in the second period even though the score didn’t really show it. In the third we were able to put it away.”
The Black Knights went ahead less than five minutes into the game, converting on a loose puck in front. After the net came dislodged, Stoughton had an offensive zone face off. The puck went behind the net and was deflected by Adam Potter right out in front where senior Barry Cooke backhanded it in with 10:43 left in the first.
King Philip responded just four minutes later, converting on the power play. With just six seconds remaining on the man advantage, Kyle McCarthy ripped a shot that was deflected by Matt Smith right in front to tie the game with 6:45 left in the first. The Warriors then took the lead for good when Jacob Kelly scored off assists from Matt Smith and Sam Ross. After giving up the opening goal, KP held a 2-1 advantage at the first intermission.
The next goal would be an important one and it came from Clay Geuss just over five minutes into the period. The senior took a pass from fellow defenseman Cory Lombardo and stepped into a shot that took a deflection off a Stoughton player and found the back of the net to make it 3-1.
“We played a pretty good first but we just needed to continue with that approach and keep getting pucks on net,” Carlow said. “We ended up getting that big goal in the second. Overall I thought the guys played well. We had guys coming back from injuries, some others that are sick so thing were different but all in all I was pleased with the effort.”
Just 30 seconds after KP’s goal, Stoughton thought they had pulled within one but the goal was waved off due to the net being off. The Warriors outshot the Black Knights 14-4 in the period but Stoughton freshman goalie AJ Scott made 13 of his 40 saves in the period.
King Philip made sure to add another insurance goal early in the final period. Just 27 seconds in, McCarthy ripped a shot from just inside the blue line that went wide but took a big bounce off the boards and came back and bounced in off a Stoughton player and in.
Jeremy Smith then took a pass from brother Matt Smith and Ross and ripped a slap shot upstairs from just inside the blue line to make it 5-1. McCarthy grabbed his second of the game with just over a minute left, weaving through two defensemen and finishing with a wrist shot.
The Warriors had four goals from defenseman.
“We talked to the defense about maybe taking something off of it a little and making sure its getting through or taking a peak and making sure there’s a lane to get the puck through,” Carlow said. “Stoughton did a good job in the beginning of getting in the lanes and I think our D adjusted a little bit and we got pucks to the net.”
Shane Frommer made 16 saves for the win in goal for KP.
King Philip improves to 4-4 overall and 2-1 in Hockomock League play. The Warriors will try to make it two in a row when they travel to Taunton on Wednesday at 6:00. Stoughton (2-5-3, 0-3) will play host to Canton on Tuesday night at 7:30.
Ryan Lanigan can be contacted at RyanLanigan@hockomocksports.com and followed on Twitter at @R_Lanigan.

Saturday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 01/09/16

Today’s games are listed below.
Girls Basketball
King Philip, 61 @ Framingham, 45 – FinalFreshman Julia Leroux tallied a career-high 17 points to lead the Warriors. Maddie Purdue added nine points for KP, while Hadley Zolak and Courtney Kelleher each had eight. KP coach Martin Crowley said, “Great win for the kids having to go back to back days.”
Hockey
Attleboro, 2 @ Oliver Ames, 5 – FinalSam Larkin and P.J. Elliott had the goals for the Bombardiers.
Canton, 3 @ Taunton, 1 – Final – Mike Dadasis, Seamus Pecararo and Matt Lazaro scored for the Bulldogs while Will Walsh had the Tigers’ lone tally. 

Franklin, 9 @ Foxboro, 0 – Final – Luke Downie, Ryan Hohman, Joe Lizotte and Zac Falvey all scored their first varsity goals in the win for the Panthers.
King Philip, 6 @ Stoughton, 1 – Final – Kyle McCarthy scored a pair of goals for King Philip while Matt Smith, Jacob Kelly, Clay Geuss and Jeremy Smith each scored once. Stoughton freshman goalie AJ Scott made 40 saves in net while Barry Cooke had the Black Knights’ lone goal. 

Mansfield, 2 @ Brockton, 6 – Final

North Attleboro, 6 @ Milford, 1 – Final
Wrestling
Canton’s Peckham Tournament (Canton, Mansfield, King Philip, Sharon), 9:30
Franklin @ Franklin County Tech – Franklin went 4-0 with wins over Maher (64-9), Holliston (38-12), Pioneer (24-6) and Athol (24-9). 
Natick Tournament – Milford placed third among 13 teams with 176 points. Carlos Terrinha was second at 113, Brett Kimball was second at 132, Ryan Gray was second at 182, Nick Johnson was second at 195, Nick Marcolini placed third at 106, Eliel Mares was third at 138, Ryan Nesta was fourth at 160, John Niro placed fourth at 285 and Jason Pinto was sixth at 126.
Whitman-Hanson Tournament – North Attleboro won the 16-team tournament with 14 of their 17 wrestlers earning medals. 
Sandwich Quad – Oliver Ames went 2-1 on the day, picking up a 48-30 win over Sandwich and a 49-21 win over Melrose but suffered a 53-9 loss to Hingham. Liston Funai (132) went 2-0 on the day with a pair of pins and Pat Mills (22) was 3-0 with three pins for the Tigers. 
Taunton @ Quincy – Taunton picked up two wins from Justin Bradley (126), Alex Simon (170) and Santiago Lopez (220). Three other Tigers picked up one win on the day: Cooper Moreton (106), Josh Grasso (126) and Hannah Driscoll (160). Taunton lost to Walpole (15-60) and Quincy (30-54).
Girls Hockey
Canton, 1 vs. Falmouth, 3 – Final
Franklin, 0 @ Medfield, 2 – Final
King Philip, 5 @ Dover-Sherborn/Hopkinton, 1 – Final
Mansfield/Oliver Ames, 4 vs. Westwood, 3 – Final

Hockey: Kelley-Rex Division Preview 2015-2016

Kelley-Rex hockey
Mansfield and North Attleboro will be two of the teams gunning to unseat Franklin and win a league title. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)

Attleboro
2014-15 Record: 11-13-1 (2-8-0)
2014-15 Finish: Reached Div. 3 South semifinal
Head Coach: Mike Cripps

The Bombardiers made an improbable run to the Div. 3 South semifinal before being eliminated by Hanover. Even with a short bench and a goaltender that had never played before, Attleboro won three tournament games for the first time in program history and this year will try to build on that experience and get back to the postseason.

With 20 players on the roster, depth may not be Attleboro’s strength but there are some players that Cripps will be counting on to produce this season led by senior forward Keagin Larkin. He will be helped out on the forward line by junior P.J. Elliott and sophomore Sam Parker. Freshman Sam Larkin will also step in right away and Cripps said that he has been “impressive” during the opening two weeks of practice.

Senior goalie Tim Gile returns between the pipes after a season that saw him put on goalie pads for the first time. He will be joined at the goalie position by junior Tyler Koppy. In front of goal, seniors Will McKenzie and Jack Flynn and sophomore Sam McKenzie will be part of Attleboro’s defensive corps.

There may only be 20 players on the roster, but the Bombardiers are a tight-knit group and Cripps is hopeful that they can get back to .500 and another trip to the playoffs. He said, “Our team is a group of hard-working players with good chemistry. With our lack of depth, we have to avoid injuries and illness. I am very happy with the progress I have seen after the first week.”

Franklin
2014-15 Record: 17-4-3 (10-0-0)
2014-15 Finish: Lost in first round of the Super 8
Head Coach: Chris Spillane

How does Franklin follow up its first ever appearance in the prestigious Super 8 tournament? How does the program recover from losing 21 seniors off a roster that finished unbeaten in the Hockomock League and had one of the league’s most exciting hockey moments when it beat Xaverian in overtime in the Super 8 play-in game?

Those are tough questions that head coach Chris Spillane will be trying to answer in the coming weeks as he incorporates almost an entirely new roster. The top returning scorer from last season is senior Alex Bissanti, who chipped in with five goals as a junior. He will be joined up front by junior Adam Assad, who Spillane said has “lots of offensive potential.” In addition, the coach noted that he is looking towards a “strong” sophomore class to provide a spark offensively.

Ryan Shea was a rock in goal last season after getting his first playing time as a senior and the Panthers will be counting on seniors Nick Jasinki (five games in 2014-15) and Cam Benham to step in this year and have a similar impact. In front of the goalies, Franklin has a strong defensive corps led by senior captains Matt Pleshaw and Jack Chaffee. The defense has been bolstered by the return of senior Tyler Oaks, who had been playing for the South Shore Kings. Spillane called him a “strong offensive defenseman.”

It is only the third season for Franklin in Div. 1 and already the Panthers have accomplished more than most public school programs. This could be a transition year for Franklin but expectations remain high for a perennial power. Spillane said, “With the departure of 21 seniors, the success of this team will rely on finding a identity early in the season.”

King Philip
2014-15 Record: 7-10-3 (4-5-1)
2014-15 Finish: Missed playoffs
Head Coach: Paul Carlow

For the second time in three season, King Philip has changed coaches with Paul Carlow taking charge of the Warriors this winter after two seasons as the JV and assistant coach. Thanks to his experience with the program and with the players, Carlow, who was once a standout player for KP, called the transition “smooth.” He added, “I know the players and they know me, which has made it pretty easy. Everyone know what is expected.”

The Warriors numbers were not huge this winter and depth may not be a strength, but Carlow is excited about the talent that KP will send out on the ice with six forwards and six defensemen returning from last year’s squad. The Warriors will be led on the forward line by senior captain Matt Smith, while fellow captain Clay Guess will lead an experienced blue line group that also includes football star Corey Lombardo.

Sophomore Collin Cooke is a player to watch this season and is poised for a breakout winter after scoring 11 goals and 10 assists as a freshman. Fellow sophomore Dan McLoughlin could be a player that steps in and provides a spark along with junior Richie Lucente, who saw plenty of ice time last season. Carlow also said that junior Jeremy Smith should step right in at defense. He noted that Smith had the talent to get on the ice as a sophomore but was only limited by the experienced players ahead of him.

Carlow has added preseason scrimmages and has changed the schedule around to add teams like Nauset, Walpole, and Coyle to prepare the team for the rigors of the Div. 1 tournament. After narrowly missing out the past two seasons, Carlow is confident the Warriors can make a run to the postseason. “We need to be ready for the type of teams we’re going to face,” said Carlow. “We may not be the deepest team, we didn’t have 90 kids tryout like Franklin, but we’ve got speed and we can play.”

Mansfield
2014-15 Record: 10-11-0 (8-2-0)
2014-15 Finish: Reached Div. 1 South first round
Head Coach: Rick Anastos

Mansfield enters another season as one of the main threats to Franklin in the Kelley-Rex division. The Hornets, who are the only other team to have won the division (in 2011), are one of the few programs to consistently have the talent base to challenge the Panthers and this season is no different.

Junior forward Matt Farragher is primed for a breakout season after scoring 13 points as a sophomore and he will be paired up front with several classmates, including Pat Sunderland and Chad Piotti. Seniors Pat Graham, Shane Doherty, and Max Hoffman will return to give Mansfield strength in depth along its first two lines and the firepower to make the Hornets a dangerous team in the Hock.

Mansfield also has the potential to be strong defensively, as demonstrated by a scoreless tie with Winthrop on Saturday. Anthony Visconti, who gave up just more three goals per game last season, returns in goal and he will be helped out by senior defenseman Mike Arnold, who leads the blue liners, along with classmate Tim O’Brien.

The Hornets have experienced returning players, but there is plenty of youth coming through program as well with two freshman and five sophomores on the varsity roster. Franklin may remain the team to beat, but Mansfield is confident that it will be right there pushing the Panthers to the end.

North Attleboro
2014-15 Record: 12-8-1 (6-4-0)
2014-15 Finish: Reached Div. 2 South first round
Head Coach: Stephen Snizek

The Rocketeers made it back to the tournament last season but were knocked out in overtime by Milford in the first round. With Sean Young graduated, North Attleboro will be looking for someone that can step into his role as the primary scorer and make a run at a first league title in its final season in the Kelley-Rex.

There is a lot of depth returning for North this season led on the forward line by senior captains Andrew Casson and Brian Poillucci and juniors Zach McGowan and Erik Clements, each of whom have years of experience for the Rocketeers. Sophomores Jason McNeany and Andrew Wissler and a strong freshman class will add to the forwards over the course of the season.

Defensively, North Attleboro will count on juniors Paul Baker and Vincent Zammiello and senior Matthew Marceau on the back line. The defense will be key and Snizek is expecting his forwards to help back as well as the Rocketeers will be using freshmen Chris Ulrich and Ryan Warren in goal this year.

The Rocketeers have a lot of weapons and Snizek is excited for the talent coming through the program. He said, “We have a lot of weapons on offense and we need to get pucks to the net and drive in the dirty goals. Our forwards will need to play in all zones on the ice.  Not just the offensive zone.”

Taunton
2014-15 Record: 9-12-1 (2-8-0)
2014-15 Finish: Missed Playoffs
Head Coach: Kris Metea

The Tigers have been building the program for the past few years, developing young skaters, and waiting for a time that it can come together for a potential run at the state tournament. Head coach Kris Metea is hopeful that this could be the year, as Taunton boasts a talented forward line that could provide the goals needed to get to the playoffs. Metea said, “The eighth graders and freshmen that took beatings three years ago have all grown up and can physically compete with players in the Hockomock now.”

Among the players that Metea highlighted this season are junior Nick Terry, who is coming off an all-star season, and senior Tyler Pietrzyk, who will both be starters. Junior Zack Albert and sophomore Will Walsh will add depth to the forwards as well. Defensively, senior David Perry and junior Mike Volkmann will be two of the key players and add a physical component to the Tigers.

Taunton has three goalies on the varsity roster and Metea has confidence in all of them to win games. Senior Cam Pitts is the most experienced of the trio but junior Justin Chappell and freshman Griffin Speicher both will see time as well.

If Taunton can improve the power play and utilize its overall team speed, this could be an interesting year for the Tigers. “It has been a pleasure working with these players and see them grow up as hockey players and young men,” said Metea. “They have matured physically and mentally and are ready to take the next step to compete with the top end of the ever-competitive Hockomock.”