Bottom Row left to right: Danny Duggan, Peter Shaughnessy, Kevin Nee, Brendan O’Connor, Robert Felice, Brian Mullis . Top Left to right John Shaughnessy, Liam Connelly, Brayden Gordon, Will Foscaldo, Jack Blake, Colton Hermann, Collin Borteck, Colin O’Leary, Owen Mix, Nathan Keefe, Mason Paguio, Max Weber . Coaches left to right Stephen Nee, Mike Weber, Dan Duggan
Late Sunday night, the Medfield Hockey 8th grade team faced the strong Medway Snipers in the championship game in the Junior High League. The Medfield players were already riding high coming off of an intense 2-1 victory against talented Walpole in the semi-final game on Friday. Going into their last ever middle school game after three great years together, the players were looking to go out on top, especially after seeing the 6th graders win just before them.
Medfield came out strong in the first period with great offensive and defensive plays. Jack Blake scored an amazing goal early in the game to take a 1-0 lead, which held for the rest of the period. The lead was in jeopardy at the end of the period as Medfield found themselves on the penalty kill. But a great effort from Colin O’Leary, John Shaughnessy, Danny Duggan, and Max Weber, along with saves from goalie Kevin Nee, kept the Snipers scoreless through the first period.
The Warriors looked to build on their lead in the second period and continued to pepper the Snipers goalie with quality shots. Unfortunately, the Snipers were able to capitalize on an opportunity and tie the game at 1-1. Shortly after, Medway scored another and took the lead at 2-1. With about half of the game left to be played, Medfield knew they had to dig deep to win the championship. With only a few minutes left in the period, Colin O’Leary received a great pass from Owen Mix right out front and scored off his own rebound. Going into the last period of the players’ middle school careers, the game was tied 2-2.
The final period proved to be thrilling for both teams. With 12 minutes left the Snipers re-gained the lead on a textbook two-on-one play. However, Medfield stayed determined and Owen Mix fired a shot into the net only a few minutes later. With ten minutes remaining and the game tied, the finish was sure to be exciting.
The teams continued to battle it out for the remainder of the game, but both teams struggled to score a goal. Kevin Nee had several clutch saves to keep the game tied in the final stretch. With under a minute left it seemed certain that this game would go to overtime just as the 6th grade game did. With thirty seconds left Brayden Gordon led a rush down the ice and landed a shot on net. The rebound went to the corner and Peter Shaughnessy won the puck and dished a perfect pass to a wide open Liam Connelly in front of the net. Connelly handled the puck and quickly roofed the puck into the net with only 17 seconds remaining. After a quick timeout, Medfield was able to hold off the Snipers for the remaining time and secure the 4-3 win and the championship.
The win was a perfect way for the players to finish their middle school careers. After three great seasons with lots of ups and downs, they were finally able to take the championship for themselves. With both the 6th and 8th graders winning such challenging championships the future for Medfield hockey certainly looks bright.
The Coaches thoroughly enjoyed their three years with the team and would like to wish Mason Pagio, Brendan O’Connor, Brian Mullis, Colin O’Leary, Max Weber, Peter Shaughnessy, John Shaughnessy, Liam Connelly, Robert Felice, Danny Duggan, William Foscaldo, Owen Mix, Brayden Gordon, Kevin Nee, Colin Borteck, Colton Hermann, Nathan Keefe, and Jack Blake all the best as they move on to their high school years.
Special thanks to Assistant Coach Mr. Mark Borteck !