Mass. Girls Division I Poll
* Updated 2/15/15
The Hingham Showcase has year in and year out featured many of the premier teams in Mass. Girls HS hockey and on day one Tuesday, the Showcase will boast a marquee game.
That’s when the top two teams in this week’s HNIB News Mass. Girls Division I Poll, #1 Reading (17-1-0) and #2 Arlington Catholic (15-2-1) will face off (2 pm, Pilgrim Arena) to try and get the upper hand heading into the post-season, where the two clubs could definitely meet up again.
Earlier this season, the Cougars put the only blemish on Reading’s record, taking a 1-0 win back in December.
The Rockets, in the #1 spot for the third straight week, have been on the top of their game. This past week, coach Mike Golden’s club beat three good teams in Winchester (5-0), Acton-Boxboro (6-2) and Woburn (5-0). After the AC game, Reading closes the Showcase with a game Thursday against much-improved Westford Academy.
The Cougars have also been firing on all cylinders lately, wrapping up the Catholic Central League title outright with a convincing 5-0 win over Austin Prep Saturday. They also knocked off Archbishop Williams (4-1) and Hingham (3-0). They will take on Duxbury (Thursday) in a rematch of last year’s state title game.
#3 Barnstable (11-1-4) fell from the ranks of the unbeaten with a 2-0 setback to Falmouth. The Red Raiders will be very busy this week, with Cape Cod Classic games with LaSalle (Monday), Wellesley (Tuesday) and Warwick, RI (Thursday), and a makeup with Notre Dame (Wednesday) before entering the post-season.
Despite the loss to Arlington Catholic, Austin Prep (11-3-2) moves up to #4. The Cougars knocked off Wakefield (5-1) in their other action this week. They were scheduled to play Hingham tonight (Sunday, weather permitting), and still have Springfield Cathedral (Tuesday) and the Cougar Classic, taking on Newton North (Thursday) and either Notre Dame or Norwood (Friday).
#5 Duxbury (12-4-1) had an up-and-down week, losing to Falmouth (6-1) and then beating Sandwich (8-0). In addition to the AC contest, the Dragons get Acton-Boxboro Tuesday at the Hingham Classic, and close out the regular season against Billerica (Friday) before starting the defense of their state title.
Flying somewhat under the radar, Watertown/Belmont (16-3-1) slides up to #6 after solid wins over Wilmington (5-0), Medford (6-1) and Melrose (4-0). The Maraiders have their own tournament this week, taking on Winthrop/Lynn (Monday) and Beverly/Danvers (Thursday).
Always dangerous Acton-Boxboro (13-3-2) checks in at #7. The Colonials clinched the MVC/Dual Large title Saturday with a 2-0 win over Billerica. Duxbury (Tuesday) and Woburn (Thursday) are their Hingham Classic opponents, and a makeup with Waltham is on for Friday.
#8 Beverly/Danvers (11-4-1) wrapped up the Northeastern Hockey League title with wins over Winthrop/Lynn (7-2) and Peabody (7-3). The Panthers take on Wakefield Monday and then have games at the Watertown/Belmont Tournament against Leominster (Tuesday) and host Watertown/Belmont (Thursday).
#9 Andover (10-5-2) dropped a 4-1 decision to new #10 Westford Academy (10-5-3) this week. The Golden Warriors have a makeup with Central Catholic left, as well as a date Wednesday with New Hampshire heavy Hanover.
Meanwhile, the Grey Ghosts make their first appearance in the poll after the Andover win, and a subsequent victory over previously-ranked Chelmsford. They have won five straight. Prior to taking on #1 Reading Thursday, Westford battles St. Mary’s at Hingham Tuesday, a must-win game for St. Mary’s if they hope to get a tournament berth.