2017 Hockomock Baseball Preview

2017 Hockomock Baseball Preview

By HockomockSports.com Staff

2017 Hockomock Baseball Preview

Attleboro

2016 Record: 13-10
2016 Finish: Reached D1 South Semifinal
Coach: Matt Bosh

Coming off a great run in the state tournament a year ago, the Attleboro Bombardiers will be looking for a repeat performance in 2017. This year, instead of relying on just one or two pitchers, Attleboro will trust the depth of its pitching staff to get things done on the mound.

Senior Tyler McGovern will be the anchor of the staff while classmates Matt Callahan, Dylan Maskell and Tyler Davis will also factor in on the mound. Juniors James Weir, Drew Pagano, Erik McCormick and John Candiales, along with sophomore Eoin Hammel-Kelleher could all see innings on the mound as well.

Callahan will also see time in the field at shortstop while Weir looks to be a reliable option at first base. Matt Marguerite will patrol the outfield while Steve Hamerski, Tyler Davis, Drew Pagano, Sam Larkin and Alex Whittingham are all likely candidates for spots in the outfield as well. Head coach Matt Bosh said there is a lot of internal battles for most positions.

“Every year brings new challenges and elements,” said head coach Matt Bosh. “The biggest difference from last year I think is the depth of the pitching staff. While last year we were top heavy with Nate and Tyler, this year I think we have more guys that can compete and spread the wealth in eating up innings. But we’ll see how that plays out. The Hock will be tough, like always”.

Canton

2016 Record: 11-11
2016 Finish: Reached D2 South Quarterfinals
Coach: Greg Digirolamo

First year head coach Greg Digirolamo likes what he sees from his Bulldogs so far, but the challenge has been finding some grass to play on. Heading into the first week of the season, the weather has prevented the Bulldogs from getting to play outside yet.

Nonetheless, there are some experienced varsity players that will likely factor in right away for Canton. Junior outfielder Matt Casamento might be the most experienced player of the returnees but seniors Jackson Maffeo, Danny Hartnett, Kevin Monagle, Tommy Kilduff and Matt Crandall are all likely to factor in during the season.

A trio of juniors will be Digirolamo’s go-to for pitching to start out the season. Ryan White, Austin Maffie and Rob Wilkenson are all likely to see a lot of innings as the season gets underway.

“It will take the first couple weeks of the season for me to know what we have from a talent perspective,” Digirolamo said. “I will tell you, it only took a week of tryouts to find out I have a good group of kids. They work hard and they’re eager to learn. As a first year coach, that’s all I can ask for right now.”

Foxboro

2016 Record: 8-13
2016 Finish: Reached D3 South Preliminary Round
Coach: Chris Sullivan

Foxboro will be looking to get back to the postseason again this year and will rely on its starting pitching and experience to get there.

Hockomock League All Star Aaron Wentling is back on the mound while Colin Thoener – who missed nearly all of last season – is healthy and ready to produce on the mound. Steve McLaughlin, who has some varsity experience, will also get starts on the mound for the Warriors.

There aren’t many players more experienced at the varsity level than catcher Jesse Galanti, who enters his fourth year as a starter and third as captain for Foxboro. Outfielders AJ Bubencik and Cam Feldman have also played a lot of games at the varsity level and will be counted on to lead the way for the Warriors along with infielder Chad Bearce.

“This group has been through a lot of adversity both on and off the field and has shown a ton of resiliency,” said Foxboro head coach Chris Sullivan. “At this point, nothing really fazes these guys they just keep showing up ready to play every day.”

Franklin

2016 Record: 13-10
2016 Finish: Reached D1 South First Round
Coach: Zach Brown

Between Franklin’s pitching staff and its lineup, there is a lot of experienced players with success at the varsity level ready to go this season.

After relying on a trio of sophomores on the mound last year, all three are back ready for strong junior campaigns. Jake Noviello and Jason Ulrickson logged a lot of innings are starting pitchers while Bryan Woelfel emerged as one of the best bullpen options in the league. Now they are poised to be one of the top starting rotations in the league.

“We are optimistic that the three of them will give us a chance to have a solid rotation this season and be competitive in every game,” said Franklin head coach Zach Brown. “All three guys are very different but all of them are competitive.”

Offensively, Franklin brings back outfielders Ryan Hodgkins (.388) and Jake Lyons (.368) along with first baseman Josh Macchi (16 RBI) and catcher Tyler Gomes (16 RBI). While there are spots to fill left by talented seniors that graduated, having those four back is a very good sign for the Panthers.

King Philip

2016 Record: 15-6
2016 Finish: Reached D1 South First Round
Coach: Pat Weir

It’s going to be a challenge for King Philip to replace three all-star caliber pitchers in one season, but head coach Pat Weir and his Warriors are ready to try.

Jake Cavanagh, Jack DiCenso and Jon Rolfe are all pitching at the collegiate now after helping guide the Warriors to a Kelley-Rex title a season ago. This season, Stephen Murray and Chris Wing are back as two of the more experienced arms available for Weir. Will Weir, known for his bat and defensive play at shortstop, could also emerge as an option on the mound.

Will Weir is also one of the key bats back for King Philip, along with senior centerfielder Ryan Coulter. Both had impressive seasons as juniors and will be relied to lead the way in 2017 for KP.

“I’m hopeful we can improve on yesterday and compete today, all we ask is all you got,” said head coach Pat Weir.

Mansfield

2016 Record: 9-11
2016 Finish: Missed playoffs
Coach: Joe Breen

After just missing out on the postseason a year ago, there is a lot of optimism for the 2017 Hornets squad. With two top pitchers and a solid lineup returning, there’s plenty of reasons to be optimistic.

One main reason is the return of senior pitcher Nolan Dousa, who missed last year after undergoing Tommy John surgery. After a standout sophomore campaign, Dousa had to watch last season from the dugout. With Dousa on the self, sophomore Tyler Dalton emerged as the team’s ace, giving the Hornets a great 1-2 combination for 2017.

Offensively, the Hornets bring back shortstop Max Boen – one of the team’s top hitters a season ago – along with senior outfielder Zach Peterson, who led the team in runs last year, and senior infielder Aidan Cahill.

“We look to combine the experience of our senior class with the ambition of our underclassmen to create a competitive team for the upcoming season,” said head coach Joe Breen. “Our goal is to be the hardest working, most passionate high school baseball team in the state and let the pieces fall where they may.”

Milford

2016 Record: 8-12
2016 Finish: Missed playoffs
Coach: Paul Pellegrini

Milford will be looking to get off to a better start in 2017 after a slow one a year ago played a big part in the Scarlet Hawks missing out on the postseason.

The good news for head coach Paul Pellegrini is that he has the majority of his impactful players back this season. Senior Alex Macek really impressed after missing the beginning part of the season with injury and could be one of the top pitchers in the league this season. Tylor Renaud also provided quality innings a year ago.

Aidan Wilde has been one of the top players in this league for two years yet he’s only a junior this season. Not only is he very good defensively, he’s one of the toughest at-bats in the league and will certainly be a spark plug for the Hawks. Expect senior Anthony Arcudi and sophomore Alex Coady to be contributions this season as well.

North Attleboro

2016 Record: 7-13
2016 Finish: Missed playoffs
Coach: Paul Tobin

The Rocketeers will boast a young squad, but not one that lacks in talent. After graduating 13 seniors last year, Big Red will rely heavily on the players they do have returning this season.

The strength of the squad will be up the middle of the field, starting senior captain Kyle McCarthy in centerfield, senior captain John Brennan patrolling shortstop and junior Zach DeMattio – and his big bat – manning the catcher position. From there, each spot is open for competition according to head coach Paul Tobin. Matt Iaconis and Peter Cohen are competing for time at third while Nick Crawley, Aidan Harding, Billy Drummond, Jackson Billingkoff and Nick Sinacola are all batting for infield spots.

Nick Sinacola, Nathan Pearce, Aidan Harding and Matt Iaconis are all candidates to form Big Red’s starting rotation while Peter Cohen, Ryan Prince and Ryan Pasquel are likely to see time out of the bullpen.

“We are talented but inexperienced, so there will be some learning and growing to go through,” said head coach Paul Tobin.

Oliver Ames

2016 Record: 11-11
2016 Finish: Reached D2 South First Round
Coach: Joe Abarr

Oliver Ames has a lot of players back from a year ago and first year head coach Joe Abarr believes that should translate into a potent lineup for the Tigers.

2016 HockomockSports.com Underclassman of the Year Matt Muir will be captaining the team as a junior and will make the transition from second base to shortstop. He will likely fill the leadoff role for Oliver Ames and will also see time on the mound. Senior Sam Burr is also a team captain, will be the team’s number one starter and also man first base for the Tigers.

Sophomore third baseman Chris Pearsons is back after making some noise during his freshman year and senior Kyle Gagliardi will bring a lot of experience while he patrols center field for the Tigers. Michael Mulrean will see a lot of time on the mound again this year and sophomore catcher Jake Erlich will look to give the Tigers a boost after transferring from Xaverian this year.

“We should hit this year with lots of players with power potential,” Abarr said. “Our pitching staff is very deep with an abundance of arms available from day to day. The challenge will be writing the right lineup. We have a solid infield with underclassmen that should be able to get comfortable in their positions over the next couple of years.”

Sharon

2016 Record: 2-18
2016 Finish: Missed playoffs
Coach: Kee Arguimbau

The Eagles had a lot of young pieces a year ago and will be looking to take the next step in 2017. Leading the way will be two three-year varsity players in captains Jake Marglous and Aiden Arnold.

Marglous will be back behind the plate for another season while Arnold, one of the top power hitters in the league, will be back at first and also be an option to come in to pitch in relief situations. Other returning Eagles with varsity experience include Jake Teven, Danny Emerman, Jason Hertz, Ben Schwartz, Drew Naisuler, Ben Stamm, Brad Zongetti and Spencer Singer.

Max Tarlin had a very strong season as a sophomore a year ago and will be at the top of the rotation as a junior this season. Sophomore Noah Kamens also picked up some valuable varsity time a year ago and will be a top option for Sharon this season.

“Our strength will be in the experience we have in our pitching staff,” said head coach Kee Arguimbau. “We’re looking forward to the season behind the leadership of our captains, Jake Marglous and Aiden Arnold.

Stoughton

2016 Record: 16-7
2016 Finish: Reached D2 South Semifinals
Coach: Mike Armour

There aren’t many teams in the area that have the luxury of returning their top three pitchers, but the Black Knights of Stoughton do.

Justin Hutchinson, Ryan Sullivan and Nico Parmeggiani are all back after stellar junior seasons on the mound, putting Stoughton is a good position to start the season. Luke Johnson will also see time on the mound, adding another experienced arm for the Black Knights.

Jack Connelly is back at first base after a breakout junior season, Ruben Gonzalez will shift over to take over at shortstop while Matt Hadley and Michael Batte will both see time in the infield as well. Both Hutchinson and Sullivan will see time in the outfield when they aren’t pitching while Pat Hagerty and Nick Hardy are back as well. Johnson and sophomore Evan Gibb will battle for the starting catcher spot.

“We have a lot of experience returning, with 10 seniors on the roster, and look forward to competing in the always tough Hockomock League,” said head coach Mike Armour.

Taunton

2016 Record: 14-7
2016 Finish: Reached D1 South First Round
Coach: Blair Bourque

While there is a new coach in the dugout for the Tigers, there will be a lot of the same faces on the field for Taunton in 2017.

Blair Bourque takes over the reigns for the Tigers, who also lost league MVP Luke Figueira to graduation. However, Matt Machado and Joe Manchester are back in the outfield, Jacob Crawford is back in the middle infield, Jimmy Hoye is back and ready to take over as starting catcher, and Danny Keogh and Jack Moynihan return as two experienced pitchers.

With the battle for the number one pitcher open, Keogh and Moynihan will be the main two options to begin the season.

“Both of these guys saw success last year pitching at the varsity level and we are looking to continue and build on that success,” Bourque said.

Machado, one of the top defensive players in the league, had a breakout junior season at the plate and will look to be one of the top offensive producers again this season. Manchester shined in his sophomore season and will give the Tigers some power in the middle of the lineup. Crawford is easily one of the best defensive infielders in the league and Hoye will look to prove he’s one of the top catchers.

2017 Hockomock League Hockey All Stars

Below are the official 2017 Hockomock League Hockey All Stars, selected by the coaches in the league.

Hockomock League MVP

Jackson Maffeo, Canton

Hockomock League All Stars

PJ Elliot, Attleboro
Jake Parker, Attleboro
Quinn Gibbs, Canton
Tom Kilduff, Canton
Jackson Maffeo, Canton
CJ Martin, Canton
Mike Carresi, Foxboro
Aidan Sullivan, Foxboro
Luke Downie, Franklin
Brendan O’Rielly, Franklin
Tom Sicchio, Franklin
Jacob Kelly, King Philip
Gavin Maxwell, King Philip
Matt Farragher, Mansfield
Joe Olsen, Mansfield
Erik Clements, North Attleboro
Zach McGowan, North Attleboro
Jared Costello, Oliver Ames
Jack Maloney, Oliver Ames
Brett Williams, Oliver Ames
Cam Doherty, Stoughton
Zack Albert, Taunton
Nick Terry, Taunton

Honorable Mentions

Ryan Morry, Attleboro
Bubba McNeice, Canton
Peter Smith, Foxboro
Cam Benham, Franklin
Jeremy Smith, King Philip
Cullen Anastasia, Mansfield
Vincent Zammiello, North Attleboro
Cullen Gallagher, Oliver Ames
Jon Lessa, Stoughton
Mike Volkmann, Taunton

Resilient Bulldogs Beat Feehan In Double Overtime

Canton hockey
Canton’s Ryan Nolte fires a shot in the first period against Bishop Feehan. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)
ByRyanLanigan_2016FollowRyanLanigan_2016
 
 
 
BROCKTON, Mass. – A lot of teams would have panicked being down 2-0 halfway through a playoff game, especially one without a ton of tournament experience.

But not these Canton Bulldogs.

#6 Canton erased a two-goal deficit, survived being down a man for a third of the first overtime period and scored the game-winning goal less than a minute into double overtime to get a 3-2 win over #3 Bishop Feehan.

Sophomore Ryan Nolte scored 48 seconds into the second overtime period – his second goal of the game – to give the Bulldogs the win.

“The word is resilient…these guys are resilient,” said Canton head coach Brian Shuman. “We saw it just at the end of the season when we battled back after being down 3-1 to Boston Latin. This is arguably the most resilient team I’ve ever coached in over a decade here. We know we’re not the most talented but there’s something about this team, they just don’t get rattled when we get down. I can’t say enough things about the entire performance.”

It seemed the momentum was fully on the side of the Bulldogs after cutting the deficit in half in the second period and finding the equalizer just over five minutes into the third period.

The Bulldogs had a pair of power play chances but that’s when the momentum changed. After 45 seconds of a man advantage opportunities, Canton was whistled for a slash to make it 4-on-4 with 2:32 to play. Canton killed 46 seconds of Feehan’s power play.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

With just two minutes to play, there was a wild swing when Canton freshman Johnny Hagan ripped a shot off the crossbar that appeared to cross the line, sending the Bulldogs into celebration mode. The ref immediately waived no goal, Feehan went racing the other way and Canton’s players had to scramble back. It ended up being Hagan that sprinted back in time to thwart the chance.

A minute later, Canton was whistled for just its third penalty of the game with 1:02 to play, giving the Shamrocks a man advantage for the rest of the game. The Bulldogs didn’t blink though, and sent the game into overtime.

Feehan had the 4-on-3 power play for 28 seconds to start the first overtime. The Bulldogs were able to kill that but were whistled for another penalty with 2:48 to play. Not only was Canton able to kill that one as well, but senior defenseman CJ Martin had the best chance. He blocked a shot, raced in, deked around a defenseman but his backhand attempt was wide.

That sent the game into double-overtime and into a 3-on-3 situation. The Bulldogs rolled out Hagan, Nolte and senior defenseman Jackson Maffeo.

“If we need a stop at the end of the game, Johnny Hagan is out there,” Shuman said. “If we need a goal at the end of the game, Johnny Hagan is out there. He’s a freshman but he plays like a senior. I can’t tell you how many times at the end of games this year, he’s out there and makes a big play for us. It was a no brainer getting him out there.”

Bishop Feehan had the first opportunity but Canton goalie Quinn Gibbs came up huge. Shamrock senior forward Kyle Browne raced into the offensive zone and released a shot. Gibbs made the save with his mask, the rebound went right back to Browne, but his second bid was also turned aside by Gibbs.

Hagan raced up the other way and unleashed a wrist shot but his shot was kicked aside. Browne came back the other way but Nolte and Hagan combined to take possession back. Hagan then found Nolte streaking up the right side. The sophomore crossed over the blue line, stepped around the defenseman, faked his shot before switching to his backhand and depositing it past the Feehan goalie.

“Quinn, huge two saves there…Ryan Nolte, he just has a flair for the dramatic,” Shuman said. “He just loves to play in games like this. He’s exhausted, he’s out there a long time but he went and tried one more time and man, what a move.”

“Coach was telling me to dump it in but I saw I could make a move on the kid so I went around him and tucked it in,” Nolte said. “He tried to step up so I just went out wide on him. I knew I was going to go with the back hand once I got around the defenseman.”

Feehan originally took the lead in the first minute of the game. Josh Nelson sent his shot from the blue line wide off the boards, the bounce finding Connor O’Brien in front for an easy tap in.

Down 2-0, Canton didn’t panic and continued to battle back.

Canton nearly had the equalizer midway through the first when Mike Dadasis fired a shot that was partially stopped but the puck sat on the goal line behind Feehan goalie Derek Dattero but O’Brien was the first to it to prevent it from crossing.

Feehan had the top two chances to start the second period. First, John Anghinetti had his one-timer turned aside after a nice pass from Jason Sullivan. Just over five minutes into the period, the Shamrocks capitalized on a turnover from a Canton defenseman. Browne raced in, centering a pass for Jack Callahan’s tip in in front.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

The Bulldogs got life just over the five minute mark when the Shamrocks were whistled for a cross checking penalty, just a seconds after killing a holding penalty.

After cycling the puck around, it eventually bounced out to Maffeo, who settled the puck and then stepped into a slap shot that rocketed through traffic and left Dattero with no chance at a save.

“By far, these first two playoff games are the best two games I’ve ever seen him play,” Shuman said of Maffeo. “He was phenomenal tonight defensively. He got that huge goal. That’s why he’s out there, that’s why he’s the league MVP, that’s why he’s who he is. I can’t say enough good things about Jackson, he really has anchored that defensive unit.”

“We just knew we had to play our game,” Nolte said. “We knew we were the better team, they were good but we had some good chances we just hadn’t scored. Jackson scored that big one to get us going.”

Canton nearly tied the game just before the end of the period when Martin tossed a shot in front that Tommy Kilduff got control of and lifted a backhand shot, but Dattero made a nice save to keep it out.

Three minutes into the third period, Hagan faked out a defenseman to get a chance but his back hand was just wide. On a power play chance, junior Nick Allen had his shot from the blue line whistle just wide as well.

The Bulldogs finally broke through to tie the game on the power play. Martin fired a shot that was saved but the rebound was left in the crease and Nolte pounced, pushing it across the goal line to tie the game.

“He was a fourth liner that didn’t see the ice at all in the tournament a year ago so this is his real first state tournament action,” Shuman said of Nolte. “For him to step up and be the player he has been this year, it’s just a testament to how good of a player he is. He has those intangibles that you just can’t teach. He really is someone that has a knack for the game and you saw that on the last play.”

Canton hockey (16-4-3) advances to the D2 South Semifinal to take on #2 Medway. The Bulldogs will play the Mustangs on Tuesday, at 5:30 at Gallo.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

Gibbs, Nolte Come Through For Canton In Playoff Win

Canton hockey
Canton hockey celebrates in front of its home fans at the Ice House after holding on to beat Pembroke 1-0 in the first round of the tournament. (Josh Perry/HockomockSports.com)

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CANTON, Mass. – For the opening 12 minutes of Wednesday evening’s game, Canton junior netminder Quinn Gibbs was basically a spectator. Every once in a while, he would drop down to watch a puck dribble wide of the net for an icing, but was otherwise untroubled by the Pembroke attack.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

That would not last, as the Titans would put 23 shots on goal in the final 33 minutes of the game, many of them through screens or from point-blank range. Gibbs would come through with stops on all of them, making 23 saves to record a shutout in the first round of the Div. 2 South tournament at the Canton Ice House.

Gibbs heroics kept the score level until late in the third period when sophomore Ryan Nolte fired in the game’s lone goal to lift Canton to a 1-0 victory over the Titans and a spot in the Div. 2 South quarterfinal.

“He played one of his best games of the season and we needed him,” said Canton coach Brian Shuman of Gibbs.

“Quinn’s tough as nails in net and against these guys, in particular in the third period both times we’ve faced them, he’s had some guys go in there hard and he just stepped up and just played big in those situations,” Shuman continued.

It was not until 2:49 remained in the first period and the game’s first power play before the Titans put a shot on goal and Gibbs was forced to make a strong save from the edge of his crease. In the second, Pembroke put eight shots on net and Gibbs was equal to all of them.

He was called upon again in the opening seconds of the third when Zach Simpson got free in front and one-timed a shot from four feet out but Gibbs stood tall to block it. A few minutes later he stuck out a quick toe to deny Joe Benting from the circle and Nathan Beath on a point-blank redirect.

Shuman explained, “You can easily get rattled when guys are going in there hard but he doesn’t; he’s unfazed and he made some big stops for us tonight.”

Canton came out of the gates flying and dominated the opening period. The Bulldogs had 14 shots in the first. Mike Dadasis set up Jack Goyetch for the best chance but the shot was saved by Pembroke goalie Justin Pijanowski. Tommy Kilduff stole a puck to the left of the goal and fed it to freshman John Hagan but that was also stopped.

In the second, Canton added another 10 shots (the Bulldogs finished with 35 in the game) but most were coming from the edges of play. Senior defensemen Jackson Maffeo and C.J. Martin both had several shots through a crowd and Bubba McNeice had a quick turn and a shot that was saved.

“We’ve been averaging more than four goals per game the second half of the season because we’ve been getting pucks to the net and bodies to the net,” said Shuman. “I feel like we got pucks there tonight, but no bodies. We were just a half second too slow.”

One player that was creating chances on a consistent basis was Goyetch. The junior forward was a constant thorn on the forecheck and his speed through the neutral zone created a power play and several scoring opportunities.

Shuman said, “Jack is a rock. Every single game you know what you’re going to get out of him and that’s energy. You’re always going to get a goalscoring chance or two…and we need a guy like that. It seemed like Jack was able to settle things down for us.”

Hagan nearly broke the deadlock just before the end of the second period after getting a feed from Nolte. The freshman forward settled the puck, took aim, and was unlucky to see his shot elude the goalie’s shoulder but carom back off the bar.

The Bulldogs struggled to get control in the third and it was Pembroke that had the edge in scoring chances, until the final six minutes. Canton was given a power play chance and Nolte made it count. He skated on the far side boards, circled back around and from the left face-off dot went high on the short side and roofed his wrister.

“What a shot,” said Shuman. “Ryan did not play his best game, and Ryan will tell you that, but he made a big shot when he counted and that’s what he’s all about. He’s a big game player for us.”

Charlie Malloy had a chance to seal the win with a steal and a breakaway but his shot was blocked aside. Kilduff nearly snagged an empty net goal in the final seconds but could not prevent the icing.

Pembroke continued to press and forced Gibbs to make a save and then watch a puck slide just wide of the post. It was exactly what Canton expected from a state tournament game.

“Typical D2 South game,” Shuman agreed. “As long as I can remember, we’ve had so many one-goal D2 South games. We’ve had a lot of one-goal games this year and we’ve been finding ways to win them.”

One of those one-goal wins was against Bishop Feehan and Canton (15-4-3) will face the Shamrocks again on Saturday in the Div 2 South quarterfinal at Asiaf Arena.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

Thursday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 02/23/17

Today’s games are listed below.

Hockey
Canton, 7 vs. Boston Latin, 3 – FinalCanton overcame a two-goal deficit to finish the season with a win. Junior Bubba McNeice and sophomore Ryan Nolte each scored a pair of goals for the Bulldogs while Tommy Kilduff, Johnny Hagan and Jack Goyetch each scored once in the win.

Franklin, 5 vs. Barnstable, 2 – Final

Taunton, 9 @ Durfee, 3 – FinalTaunton senior Zack Albert registered four points while classmates Nick Terry, Cam Carnes and Jordan Hoey each notched three points in the win. Albert scored twice and had two assists, Terry found the back of the net twice with one assist, Carnes scored once with two helpers and Hoey had three assists. Mike Volkmann and Cam Welby each added a goal an assist while Jake Roberts and Owen Ross each scored once. Cam Sneyd and Andrew Carter each had two assists while Camden Faria had one assist. Goalie Justin Chappell (16 saves) also had an assist in the win.

Girls Hockey
Canton, 3 vs. Walpole, FinalCanton’s Colleen Kelleher recorded her seventh shutout of the season for the Bulldogs.

Bulldogs Shutout By Div. 2 South Rival Medway

Canton hockey
Tommy Kilduff (2) and the Canton offense generated 21 shots on goal against Medway but could not find the back of the net and were shutout for the first time this season. (Josh Perry/HockomockSports.com)

Josh PerryFollowJoshPerry


CANTON, Mass. – Canton has been one of the top defensive teams in the Hockomock League this season, allowing only 19 goals in its first 12 games, but the Bulldogs have struggled at times to find consistent offense and that problem persisted on Saturday evening against potential Div. 2 South challenger Medway at the Canton Ice House.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

The Bulldogs had one defensive lapse, leaving a Medway forward all alone in the high slot early in the third period, and that goal was all it took for the visiting Mustangs to walk away with the 1-0 win and the two points.

“When you score zero goals, there’s little margin for error and we had one back coverage in the zone and left that third guy high, which is where they generate a lot of their offense, and we didn’t account for him and he made a big shot,” explained Canton coach Brian Shuman after the game.

Canton had a hard time generating attack through the neutral zone, as the Mustangs clogged the middle of the ice and made sure to keep a forward in the middle to stop potential odd-man rushes. The Bulldogs could not get the typical breakouts that make their offense tick.

“They’re as good as a defensive team as there is,” said Shuman of Medway. “They always make sure to keep that third guy high; you’ll never see them give up a 3-on-2 or a 2-on-1 by being out of position. They play a good system that clogs that neutral zone, so it’s hard to get speed generated.”

Medway was not creating a lot of scoring chances early in the game either but had the best opportunities of the first period. James Anderson skipped past the check of Jackson Maffeo and forced Quinn Gibbs into one of his 18 saves. With a minute left, Anderson again created a chance and then Gibbs made the second stop on Andrew Diebus’ rebound effort.

The best chance for the Bulldogs in the first came from the defense, when senior C.J. Martin led the rush up ice and forced a Patrick Malloy glove save from the right circle. In the second period, Martin, Maffeo and Brad Murphy all had shots on goal for Canton, which was getting most of its chances from the defensemen.

“I think our wings in particular were really tentative and not doing anything on the breakout and the defense made up for that with their legs and getting the puck out of the zone,” said Shuman. “That’s why you have defensemen who can skate.”

Gibbs was forced into a good pad save to deny Jake Tomsik early in the second, while the best chance for Canton was created by freshman John Hagan, whose pass from behind the net to Tommy Kilduff was saved by Malloy.

Canton was outshot 17-13 through the opening two periods and Shuman was disappointed in the Bulldogs’ inability to get the puck deep and force Medway back into its defensive zone.

He said, “One of the things we didn’t do in the first two periods is get the puck down low and work from below the dot, which is what we do well, and we didn’t generate any shots from the point.”

The opening goal came 2:21 into the third period. Diebus drove the puck behind Gibbs and then flipped a pass out to Anderson, who was left wide open and gave Gibbs no chance with a one-time rocket into the top corner.

From the time of the goal to the final horn, Canton turned the tide and dominated play. The Bulldogs outshot the Mustangs 8-2 in the third but could not find a way past Malloy.

“In that third period, we had some really good chances and somehow didn’t find the back of the net,” Shuman said. “It just was one of those things where you play better and still lose the period.”

Hagan followed up a Kilduff shot but his shot was right into the goalie’s chest and with three minutes remaining Charlie O’Connor had an opportunity on a rebound after Malloy kicked aside a shot from Murphy, but the senior goalie recovered to save the second chance too.

Malloy made another kick save to deny Martin’s shot from the point through a screen, which have taken a deflection along the way. Despite the pressure, the Bulldogs could not find the back of the net and were shutout for the first time this season.

“I thought we played well defensively,” said Shuman. “Quinn played well, but if you score no goals then it’s tough to come out with the points.”

Canton (9-3-2, 6-0-0) will get back into league play, needing three points to clinch at least a share of the Davenport title, against Taunton on Wednesday at the Ice House.

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Canton Weathers North Attleboro’s Comeback Effort

Canton hockey
Canton’s Bubba McNeice (assist) carries the puck in the offensive zone against North Attleboro. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)
ByRyanLanigan_2016FollowRyanLanigan_2016
 
 
 
CANTON, Mass, – For 43 minutes, Canton was clicking and playing impressive hockey.

But in a two minute span, North Attleboro completely changed the game and erased a three goal deficit.

Fortunately for the Bulldogs, they were able to bounce back with one more goal late in the second period to pick up a 4-3 win over the the Rocketeers in a Davenport division showdown.

“I don’t think I’ve ever coached in a game like that were all of a sudden we were up three and then tied in a blink of an eye,” admitted Canton head coach Brian Shuman. “But that’s North Attleboro, they are dangerous. They shoot the puck harder than any team we’ve faced. Those guys can shoot and they had a couple good shots off and it’s a tie ball game, that’s how explosive they are.”

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Canton scored a pair of goals in a dominating first period and added one more early in the third period and looked to be cruising. But midway through the period, the Rocketeers turned things around.

First, Hunter Sarro pounced on a loose puck in the offensive zone, corralling the puck and turning and firing all in one motion. Canton goalie Quinn Gibbs (14 saves) got a piece of the shot but the puck found its way over the line.

Just 42 seconds later, the Rocketeers made things interesting as Jason McNeany centered the puck right in front of goal, allowing a tap in opportunity for Sarro to make it 3-2 with 7:17 to play in the second period.

And just over one minute later, Will Yeomans knocked down a clearance and centered it for Erik Clements, who fired a wrist shot top shelf to tie the game with 6:10 to play in the period.

“No adjustments, we told them we just had to stay with our game,” said North Attleboro head coach Steve Snizek. “We came out flat; our team knew it and [Canton] took advantage. It’s tough to comeback but they showed a lot of character tonight which I’m very proud of. We came up short but there were a lot of positives – some negatives – but I thought the positives outweighed especially just being a man and showing a lot of character.”

Canton was able to respond shortly before the end of the period, a goal that turned out to be the game-winner.

Senior defenseman DJ Trerice weaved his way into the offensive zone and dropped the puck back at the blue line to Bubba McNeice. McNeice played catch with CJ Martin on the blue line before firing the puck towards goal. Junior Charlie O’Connor was able to get his stick on the puck to redirect the puck into the back of the net.

“Not only was it important for the scoreboard, it was important for the bench,” Shuman said. “A lot of guys were getting on each other to pick it up so that was huge. CJ Martin, that was the best game I’ve seen him play in two years. He was outstanding out there defensively, he skated the puck when we needed him to and then it was really nice to see him factor into that goal, he had a great game.”

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The third period was mostly even, but neither side registered a serious scoring chance. North Attleboro had a power play opportunity with 2:47 left but couldn’t cash in. Canton was able to keep the pressure in the offensive zone to prevent the Rocketeers from pulling goalie Ryan Warren (28 saves).

Canton opened the scoring just three minutes into the game. After an offensive zone face off, junior Mike Dadasis went into the corner and dug out the puck. He carried it right to he near post and tucked it in for a 1-0 lead.

Tommy Kilduff had a chance for Canton midway through the second period but a diving effort from Vincent Zamiello disrupted the partial breakaway chance. The Bulldogs did breakthrough with just under four minutes to play. Jack Goyetch blocked a clearance just inside the blue line and raced in and found the back of the net while being tripped out in front for a 2-0 lead.

“We played really well in the first period,” Shuman said. “We had some really good scoring opportunities, it was nice to spot ourselves the lead but we left a couple on the board. We played really well in the first and then [North Attleboro] came back and killed that penalty in the second period which was a big momentum shift. The third was back and forth game, I thought they had some really good pressure on us in the third but I thought we played better defensively. The few opportunities they had in the second they buried and they played well in the third but we were able to play tighter defensively and limit the good shots.”

Less than a minute into the second period, Canton added to its lead. With the puck dumped into the offensive zone, freshman John Hagan unleashed a big hit in the corner the forced the puck to pop free. That’s where Kilduff ripped a shot from the slot to make it 3-0.

With the win, Canton moves within a point of clinching its seventh Davenport title. Even with big league title implications on the line, Shuman said his team treated it the same they do every league game.

“We say it all the time that every game is important in the Davenport and in the league,” Shuman said. “It’s cliché but at some point it rings true where every game is a championship game. If you drop any game, your chances of taking the league title are hurt. We treated this game like we did Stoughton, Foxboro and all of the other games. We’re a step closer but we’re not there by any means we have three very tough games left in the league.”

Canton (9-2-2 overall, 6-0 Hockomock) will try to extend its 11 game unbeaten streak on Saturday against Medway. North Attleboro (7-3-2, 3-2-1) will try to bounce back on Sunday against Mansfield.

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Kilduff Rescues a Point for Canton Against Medfield

Canton hockey
Canton senior Tommy Kilduff (2) scored in the third period to earn the Bulldogs a tie with defending state champ Medfield at the Canton Ice House. (Josh Perry/HockomockSports.com)

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CANTON, Mass. – Canton and Medfield have developed quite a rivalry since the Warriors made the leap into Div. 2 several years ago. The teams consistently meet in the regular season, including last year’s shootout thriller in the Quinn Tournament in Raynham, and have also met a couple of times in the latter rounds of the South sectional.

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Although both teams have a number of new faces this season, the expectation was for a fast-paced, high-energy game. And with both teams looking for consistent offense after the graduation of key forwards, it was also expected to be tight.

On Wednesday night at the Canton Ice House, the teams met for the first time this season and the game mostly lived up to expectations, finishing in a 1-1 tie. Tommy Kilduff got the lone goal for the Bulldogs to even the score early in the third period, as the Bulldogs closed the game with a flurry after an inconsistent opening two periods.

Despite earning a point and outshooting the Warriors, who are the defending state champions, 29-16 (11-1 in the third period alone), Canton coach Brian Shuman was left wanting more from his team.

He said, “I’m happy that we battled back and had some good chances in the third period, but that’s a game that we need to go out there and put out a better effort.”

Shuman admitted that several of the players were frustrated in the locker room after the game. He said that he understood why. “They are in the elite of our division, so how do you not bring your best effort and get guys stepping up and performing?” Shuman asked. “That was the most frustrating part, not bringing the energy and making plays when we had the chance.”

Both teams are known for playing with speed and precision, but that was largely missing from the opening period. There were flashes of the passing that makes both teams hard to stop, but most of the game was played between the blue lines with the offenses struggling to make an impact.

Kilduff created the game’s first scoring chance with a good forecheck that forced a turnover but his shot was just wide across goal. The puck came back to Matt Cassamento and he fed Kilduff in front but Kevin Walsh (28 saves) came through with the stop. Canton goalie Quinn Gibbs (15 saves) made a nice stop on Dylan McNally and with 20 seconds left in the first Jack Goyetch had a chance on a 2-on-1 but Walsh managed to sit on the puck and cover up.

Medfield jumped in front a little more than a minute into the second period, and just seven seconds after a penalty on Bubba McNeice, when Ryan Johnson swung the puck across the blue line to Nick Wheeler. The senior defenseman flung a shot through traffic that Gibbs could not see.

The Warriors had their best period of the game, putting 11 shots on Gibbs in the second, but had few legit scoring opportunities. Kilduff nearly tied it with 7:15 left in the period and the rebound popped out to Ryan Nolte but his shot slid just wide of the post with Walsh prone on the ice.

The Canton forecheck created another chance two minutes later as first Goyetch and then Jackson Maffeo had shots beaten aside by Walsh. Freshman John Hagan had a snap shot kicked aside as well.

In the third, the Bulldogs finally found a way past Walsh. Nolte had a point-blank chance carom off the goalie’s shoulder when it looked destined for the corner, but the Bulldogs kept the play alive in the zone and Kilduff was able to pounce on a loose puck in front to slide in the goal.

“He was frustrated at the start of the season because the goals weren’t coming but to his credit, patience, he didn’t lose control of his emotions and he’s had a great couple of weeks for us,” said Shuman of Kilduff. “We’re going to need him going forward because it seems like we’re just riding his coattails right now.”

The Bulldogs dominated the third period and the defense limited Medfield to only one shot in the period, while Maffeo (paired mostly with Brad Murphy) and Martin (paired with D.J. Trerice) regularly found themselves pushing up into the attack.

“They weren’t feeling it this game, but they still battled through and they made all the plays they needed to, they recovered well, and they played a lot of minutes,” said Shuman of Martin and Maffeo. “The problem hasn’t been keeping guys off the board this year; we’ve been doing that pretty well. It’s getting more pucks to the back of the net.”

Canton had one last chance to try for the game-winning goal and again it was the top line that created the opportunity, Kilduff broke free down the left wing and fired a pass across goal to Nolte, but somehow Walsh managed to get across and make a sprawling save that left the Canton alumni on the opposite side of the rink mystified as to how it was not a goal.

Shuman knows that Canton is going to need more people to rise to the occasion if the Bulldogs are going to make a tournament run this season.

“We can’t rely on one line and that’s what is happening right now,” Shuman explained. “We have one line that is carrying our play, that everyone is looking to do something, and the other lines are sort of just along for the ride. We can’t get a full team going.”

Canton (7-2-2) will get back into league play on Saturday with a trip to Asiaf Arena to take on Stoughton before next week’s visit of Davenport challenger North Attleboro.

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Monday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 01/16/17

Today’s games are listed below.

Hockey
Attleboro, 5 @ Ashland, 1 – FinalJake Parker scored four goals for the Bombardiers and P.J. Elliott scored the fifth.

Canton, 2 vs. Newburyport, 0 – FinalTommy Kilduff scored the opening goal off a Brad Murphy assist in the third period. John Hagan added an empty net goal with 30 seconds left to wrap up the win. Quinn Gibbs had the shutout in goal for the Bulldogs.

North Attleboro, 2 @ Bishop Feehan, 2 – Final

Stoughton, 9 @ Apponequet/Connolly, 2 – FinalStoughton sophomore Sean Doherty scored a hat trick to pace the offense. Ryan Chipman and Jon Lessa each added a pair of goals for the Black Knights while sophomore Luke Bainton scored his first career goal.

Taunton, 2 @ Somerset-Berkley, 2 – Final

Wrestling
Peckham Tournament (Canton, Sharon) – Canton took second overall with 243 points at the 20th annual Peckham Tournament while Sharon grabbed fourth place with 176 points. Norton won the tournament with 289 points. First place finishes for Canton included Harry Carter (120), Eddie Marinilli (126), Anis Chakir (132), Joe Pacitti (152) and Mark Whalen (220). Sharon’s Ian Langol-Leonard won the 195 bracket.

Braintree Quad (Mansfield), 9:00AM

Swimming
Boys
Attleboro @ Mansfield, 7:00
Stoughton @ North Attleboro, 3:00

Gymnastics
Oliver Ames, 137.3 @ Attleboro, 141.5 – FinalOliver Ames totaled its highest all around team score in four years but fell just short to Attleboro. OA sophomore Gianna Martucci placed third in the all around with a 35.75, scoring an 8.9 on both vault and bars, an 8.75 on beam, and a 9.2 on floor. Freshman Lauren Picanzi placed fourth overall with a 35.2, scoring an 8.8 on vault, 8.9 on bars, 8.6 on beam, and an 8.9 on floor for the Tigers. OA junior Charis MacCuish tied for first on the bars with a 9.4.

King Philip, 133.95 @ Attleboro, 141.5 – FinalAccording to athletic director Mark Houle, this was a school record score for the Bombardiers.

Mansfield @ Sharon, 9:30AM

Franklin, 114.35 @ Sharon, 126.7 – FinalFranklin junior Liz Traphagen took the individual all-around with a score of 32.65. Traphagen scored an 8.1 on vault, 7.6 on bars, 8.35 on beam and 8.6 on floor. Franklin sophomore Sadie Rondeau was third overall on beam with an 8.1

Girls Hockey
Franklin, 0 @ Canton, 6 – FinalCanton junior Marissa Devane potted a hat trick to pace the Bulldogs.

Mansfield/Oliver Ames, 4 @ Stoneham, 2 – FinalShayna Menzer scored a pair of goals for Mansfield/OA. Isabelle Shantler and Kenzi Fraser each scored a goal in the win.

Saturday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 12/31/16

Today’s games are listed below. Happy New Year to everyone.

Boys Basketball
Attleboro, 78 @ Dartmouth, 40 – Final

Hockey
Canton, 4 vs. Plymouth North, 3 – FinalCJ Martin and Charlie O’Connor each scored a goal in the third period as the Bulldogs won the Jim Gormley Cup. Tommy Kilduff scored once in each the first and second period to put the Bulldogs ahead.

King Philip, 2 @ Mansfield, 5 – Final

Wrestling
Sharon, 66 @ Norwood, 12 – FinalThe win over Norwood marked the program’s 300th win, according to Sharon AD Bill Martin.

Norton Quad (Taunton) – Taunton went 1-1 at the Norton Quad to conclude the 2016 calendar year. The Tigers edged Nauset 37-36 but fell to the host Lancers, 45-14. Josh Grasso (126), Nuno Camara (182) and Woudanly Danger (220) each registered two wins.

Stoughton Quad, 9:00AM

Girls Hockey
King Philip vs. St. Joseph Prep/Mt. Alvernia, 1:20