Massachusetts Boys High School Hockey – Division 1 Top 20: Behind #1 Pope Francis, The Constant Movement Continues

Kevin Doyle
Kevin Doyle
Kevin joined HNIB in 1990 and is a Senior Writer and Director of the Northern New England and Mass/R.I. High School Division camps. A veteran editor/writer of 40 years in the print and digital mediums, he has edited and produced original content and coordinated production for local and global publications and websites. He holds degrees from Merrimack College and Boston University and won multiple industry awards as Sports Editor of The Daily News of Newburyport and News Editor of The Amesbury News. He is the 2016 recipient of the North Shore Lifetime Commitment From the Community award presented by Moynihan Lumber and a 2017 Newburyport High School Wall of Fame inductee. He resides with his family in Portsmouth, NH. Email him at [email protected] and follow him on Twitter @kdoyle40

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Massachusetts Boys D1 Top 20

1Pope Francis1700
2Abp. Williams 310
5BC High6540
6Catholic Memorial14541
8Austin Prep8823
11Belmont 9522
12Winchester 12422
13St. John's Prep 16 224
14St. John's (S)5550
15 Newburyport15811
16Franklin 161021
17Central CatholicNR611
18St. Mary's11453

And on and on it goes. Chaos has characterized this most unusual of seasons and it continued last week. Three previously unbeaten teams lost for the first time, two of them against high-end lower division opponents.

Additionally, 14 teams moved one way or another from last week’s ranking, including three that return to the rankings for the first time in several weeks. Been that kind of season.

Independent No. 1 Pope Francis (7-0-0) had an empty week and will have not played a meaningful minute in almost two weeks before they close the book on their campaign with a scheduled home-and-home set against Shrewsbury. The Cardinals have ceded just seven goals all season.

No. 2 Archbishop Williams (10-0-3) of the Catholic Central Large moved up one slot after sweeping the season series from St. Mary’s in a wild 6-4 affair. The Bishops will now host Bishop Feehan Tuesday in a Catholic Central League Cup semifinal matchup.

No. 3 Hingham (11-1-0) lost its first of the season Saturday, 4-2, in Round Two of the Patriot Cup to D3 stalwart Hanover. The Harbormen face Duxbury in Round Three Monday.

After suffering its first loss of the season against Belmont, No. 4 Woburn (7-1-1) of the Middlesex Liberty rallied to beat Winchester, 4-3, at the final buzzer Saturday, Those two tangle again Monday.

No. 5 BC High (5-4-0) of the Catholic Conference moves up a spot. Following a three-game losing streak, capped by a 4-2 loss to St. John’s Prep to start its week, the Eagles rebounded with wins over St. John’s of Shrewsbury (3-1) and Malden Catholic (3-0) to climb back above .500.

No. 6 Catholic Memorial (5-4-1), the Catholic Conference champion, put together a strong week by taking 3-of-4 points from St. John’s Prep – 3-0 win and 2-2 tie – and edging Xaverian on Sunday, 2-1.

Before that loss to CM Sunday, No. 7 Xaverian (5-3-2) extended its winning streak to five games with two wins against St. John’s of Shrewsbury (1-0 and 3-1) and another against Malden Catholic, 3-1. Despite Sunday’s loss, the Hawks won their first Catholic Conference regular season crown since 1968.

No. 8 Austin Prep (8-2-3) had its only game postponed and will finish their season having lost just two games, to Pope Francis and Archbishop Williams.

No. 9 Braintree (7-0-2) of the Bay State Herget climbed a spot after sweeping two games from Walpole, 3-1 and 4-3.

No. 10 Marshfield (7-3-2) slides two spots after falling to D2 Scituate, 2-0, in Round Two of The Patriot Cup on Saturday. The Rams face Plymouth North in Round Three.

No. 11 Belmont (5-2-2) of the Middlesex Liberty dealt Woburn its first loss, 3-1 before being shut out by Arlington, 4-0.

No. 12 Winchester (4-2-2) of the Middlesex Liberty knocked off Lexington, 4-2, before that excruciating 4-3 loss to Woburn as time expired.

No. 13 St. John’s Prep (2-3-3) of the Catholic Conference had its best week, starting with that upset of BC High. After a 3-0 loss to CM, the Eagles regrouped for a 2-2 tie with CM in the annual Derek Hines Memorial Game, followed by Sunday’s 1-0 shutout of St. John’s (S).

No. 14 St. John’s of Shrewsbury’s (5-5-0) season completely hit the skids in a four-loss week in the rugged Catholic Conference. The Pioneers scored only two goals in back-to-back losses to Xaverian (1-0 and 3-1), a 3-1 defeat at the hands of BC High, and Sunday’s loss to SJP.

No. 15 Newburyport (8-1-1) missed a shot at an outright Cape Ann League title with a 3-1 loss to D2 power Triton but earned a share of the crown with Saturday’s win at North Reading. The Clippers drew a bye into the semifinals of this week’s Cape Ann League Tournament.

No. 16 Franklin (10-2-1) of the Hockomock League’s Kelley-Rex Division; No. 17 Central Catholic (6-1-1) of the Merrimack Valley Conference; No. 18 St. Mary’s (4-5-3) of the Catholic Central Large; No. 19 Arlington (4-4-1) of the Middlesex Liberty, and No. 20 Falmouth (7-2-1) of the Cape & Islands Atlantic round out this week’s rankings.

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