Connecticut HS Boys Hockey – Division 3 Early Season Top 8: It Starts With Newington, BBD Again

Jim Clark
Jim Clark joined Hockey Night in Boston in December 2019, and has covered high school hockey in Massachusetts for more than three decades. He also covers high school hockey and is a multiplatform editor for the Boston Globe, and previously spent two decades as high school hockey reporter at the Boston Herald, where he also served as the high schools editor from 2000-06. Clark was honored by the Mass. State Hockey Coaches Association with its William Stewart Award for contributions to the sport in May 2019, and also received the Joel Perlmutter Award for media coverage in 2006. A graduate of UMass, he also spent eight years as sports editor/reporter at the Sentinel & Enterprise in Fitchburg, and has extensively covered high school hockey in Central and Western Mass. as well as Connecticut.

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Connecticut Boys Division 3 Final Top 8

5E.O. Smith/Tolland680

Hockey Night in Boston’s Connecticut Division 3 rankings pick right up where we left off last winter – at least for the top couple of spots.

Newington certainly lost plenty of talent off last year’s squad, which won the CCC South and claimed the top spot in the final rankings. But the newly named Nor’easters are in as good a position as any of the contenders entering 2021-22, and start the year at No. 1 again.

That must mean BBD is No. 2. The Wildcats, who won their first 10 games a year ago, hit a bit of a snag but rebounded to take the SCC/SWC 3 title, are another team that have enough returning talent to overcome any losses from last season.

From here, things can go in any number of directions, but many coaches like the potential of No. 3 Conard to challenge Newington out of the CCC South.

One team with a lot of preseason hype is No. 4 Staples. Coach Matt Bohn hopes his team can contend among FCIAC D2-3 schools and make a run in the D3 tournament.

Another CCC South team with high hopes is No. 5 E.O. Smith/Tolland. The Bucks have 11 seniors and experience throughout their lineup.

Moving back to the FCIAC, we find No. 6 McMahon-Norwalk, with a team that coach Scott Raymond says is as deep as it has been in recent memory.

The rankings wrap up with a pair of rivals out of the Enfield Twin Rinks – No. 7 Tri-Town and No. 8 SGWL will look to contend in the return of the Nutmeg Conference after a year away because of the pandemic.

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