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Western Mass. Top 10: After Big Win, Minnechaug Up To #4

Western Mass.Top 10

RankTeamPR*WLT
1Westfield1530
2Longmeadow2341
3Amherst/Pelham3700
4Minnechaug10441
5Belchertown5711
6South Hadley4520
7Greenfield7402
8Easthampton6540
9West Springfield8351
10East Longmeadow9351

No team has been able to knock Westfield off its No. 1 perch.

Longmeadow had the best shot, but an ambitious independent schedule, one that could benefit the Lancers down the road, has kept it from overtaking Westfield. Longmeadow lost, 4-0 to Central Mass. power Wachusettt Saturday.

Westfield became the first team in the Berry Division to win at least five games. The Bombers did hit a bump in the road earlier this week following a surprising 6-1 loss to upstart Minnechaug.

Minnechaug just may have a say in the Berry Division race before the season is over. Balance is the key to its attack as six players scored against Westfield. Matthew Kowal, Jordan Torres, Dominic Terzi, Steven Musheniko, Aiden Duquette, Marc Agusso all scored one goal for Minnechaug. Gavin Carzello had the only goal for Westfield.

Mushenko scored one goal and set up two others, while Terzi had four assists in Minnechaug’s 6-4 victory over Auburn.

Watch out for  Belchertown. The surging Orioles have won four straight following their 3-2 decision over Easthampton and 7-2 win Sunday over Southwick.

HIGHLIGHTS

* Brennan Madu scored all three goals to lift Ludlow to a 3-2 decision over South Hadley. Mike Young was outstanding in goal with a 32-save effort. Ben Watkins scored both goals for South Hadley.

* Jack Castor scored two goals and set up another to lead West Springfield to a 5-2 triumph over East Longmeadow. Nick DiMaio tallied twice for the Terriers. Casey Bridges finished with 20 saves.

* Christopher Buffone and Vaughn Gillen scored one goal apiece to boost Belchertown to a 3-2 win over reigning Western Mass. Division 3A champion Easthampton. Garren Fugiel and Ely Boyle each scored for Easthampton.

* Nicholas Saracino scored two goals with three assists to lift East Longmeadow to a 5-4 victory over Agawam. Michael Trase also scored twice, while Michael Moynihan added one goal and two assists.

Fran Sypek

Fran Sypek

Fran has covered hockey at all levels, NHL, AHL, junior, college and high school for the Springfield Republican from 1978-2013. His column "Hockey Talk'' appeared in the Sunday Republican. The hockey beat took him from Maine to Arizona in the United States and from Newfoundland to Alberta in Canada. Fran was the recipient of the Matthew Ryan Award for Outstanding Coverage of High School Hockey and the Janet McCormick Award from the Springfield Olympics. He then shifted from pros to college when the University of Massachusetts restored its program and joined Hockey East. Later, he continued covering the Boston Bruins and the Springfield Falcons. Fran's covered future NHL players from Western Massachusetts in Paul Fenton, Bob Kudelski, Rick Bennett and Bill Guerin. He is a member of the Bessone Award committee, which helps select the top high school hockey player in Western Mass. Fran was a goalie for Holyoke Community College in 1973-74 and graduated from the University of Massachusetts in 1977. Fran is currently a free lance writer living in Bondsville, Mass and grew up in Chicopee, Mass, has visited all 50 states, and is an avid photographer.