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MIAA Boys Division 1 South Preview: Several Teams Have Right Stuff To Capture Sectional Title

Following its dramatic 3-2 loss to Burlington in a 1A play-in game on Feb. 23, Independent power Hingham returns to the MIAA Boys Division 1 South Sectional as the top seed. The Harbormen are seeking their sixth State Championship, the most recent being the D1 crown in 2015. Hingham became the second public school after Reading to win the 1A Tournament back in 2010.

The 15-team field also includes three recent State Champions – No. 4 seed Duxbury is the reigning State Champion and owner of four titles since 2000; No. 10 Franklin won the 2016 title; and No. 6 Marshfield captured its second D1 crown in 2011. Don’t discount No. 2 Natick, which has had a marvelous year and is looking to annex a second State crown. Five leagues are represented in the Sectional, including five Bay State Conference clubs and three from the Hockomock’s Kelley-Rex.

Check out the D1 South bracket here

A look at the field, in order of seeding:

Hingham (12-8-3)

League: Independent

Coach: Tony Messina

State Championships (5): 2015 D1, 2010 1-A, 2001 D1, 1997 D2, 1992 D2

Tim Carroll
Hingham

Paul Forbes
Hingham

Dan Packard
Hingham

Terrence Concannon
Hingham

The Harbormen’s schedule among public schools is unmatched – they played five of the six 1A automatic qualifiers and each of the three other play-in teams. Senior Tim Carroll (8-18-26), senior captain Terrance Concannon (8-5-13) and junior Paul Forbes (9-15-24) have provided steady scoring. Additional offense comes from seniors Will Ham (6 goals) and James Eustace (4 goals) and freshman Aiden Brazel (5-5-10).

Senior captain Danny Packard, juniors Lars Osterberg and Tommy McNally and sophomore Bob Falvey (13 points) form the defense for goalies Luke Merian and Jake Wilson.

Natick (13-2-5)

League: Bay State Carey

Coach: Bill LaCouture Jr.

Sean McWhinnie
Natick

State Championships (1): 1951, D1

The Redhawks put together a marvelous debut campaign under Bill LaCouture Jr., who returned to his alma mater where he played for his father in the 1980s. Anchored by sophomore goalie Luc Gagnon, Natick was one of three teams that allowed only 29 goals to lead the division. Among nine one-goal wins was a 1-0 shutout of Framingham.

Seniors captain Jordan McCall and Tim Robinson, juniors Luke Rader and Joe Tarlin, and sophomores James Carr and Nick Haswell are stout on defense. Sophomore Sean McWhinnie (14-7-21) and senior captain David Mega (9-7-16) lead the offense. Juniors Will Genaske and Max Gargurevich add to the mix.

Ryan Concannon
Bridge-Raynham

Sam Hoffses
Bridge.-Raynham

Brandon Sinclair
Bridge-Raynham

Owen McCoy
Bridge-Raynham

Bridgwater-Raynham (12-6-2)

League: Southeast Conference

Coach: Dave Patrick

State Championships (0)

With only four league games, the Trojans essentially played an Independent schedule. They started slowly but closed on a 10-1-1 run that included three wins against Bay State Conference squads – Weymouth (3-2), Walpole (3-1), and Milton (3-2). Junior captain Ryan Concannon (13-24-37) and juniors Sam Hoffses (11-9-20) and Eddie Perry (10-6-16) spark the offense. Seniors Cole Brousseau (10-5-15) and Nicholas Jope (5-9-14) are key contributors.

Junior Brandon Sinclair (2.29 GAA, .929 PCT., 2 SO) has been a standout, aided by senior captains Owen McCoy (6 goals) and Patrick Rennie on defense.

Steve Pisani
Duxbury

Ben Cheney
Duxbury

Billy Mrowka
Duxbury

Ben Luscko
Duxbury

Duxbury (12-6-4)

League: Patriot League Keenan

Coach: John Blake

State Championships (4): 2019, D1; 2007, D1; 2005, D1; 2000, D2

This was not a customary campaign for the defending State Champs, who did not win their league; who had two four-game unbeaten streaks (2-0-2, 3-0-1) but never won more than two in a row; and who were shocked by D3 North Quincy, 3-1. On the other hand, the presence of senior captain and keeper Steve Pisani (1.50 GAA, 8 SOs) provides an equalizer and makes the Dragons dangerous.

Junior Billy Mrowka (12-8-20), junior T.J. Jones (8-8-16), senior captain Ben Cheney (9-5-14), junior Will Nolan (5-8-13) and senior Friend Weiler (6 goals) lead the offense. Seniors captain Ben Luscko (3-9-12), Nick Demio (5-5-10) and Connor Hulett man the defense.

Kyle Roche
Braintree

Johnny Harrington
Braintree

Scott Lagos
Braintree

Chris Sarno
Braintree

Braintree (11-6-3)

League: Bay State Herget

Coach: Dave Fasano

State Championships (0)

The Wamps cruised to another Herget Division crown and closed the season with a stout performance in a 3-2 non-league loss to D1A top seed Arlington that should cause others in this field to take notice. Underclassmen have led the way on offense with sophomores Scott Lagos and Owen Flynn, junior Brady Leslie and freshman Nolan Leonard joining seniors Chris Sarno and Matt Hemmert on the attack.

Senior captains Kyle Roche and Johnny Harrington anchor the blue line while juniors Dylan Anderson and Ben Sullivan have both logged time in goal.

Tim Doyle
Marshfield

Nick Souretis
Marshfield

Jonathan Jordan
Marshfield

Aidan Healey
Marshfield

Marshfield (11-6-3)

League: Independent

Coach: Dan Connolly

State Championships (2): 2011, D1; 2006, D1;  

A mid-season loss to St. John’s (S) left the Rams at 2-3-2 out of the gate. However, they regrouped during a 5-0-2 surge and closed the regular season by claiming the Coach Melchiono Showdown crown. Senior Tim Doyle (7-19-26) leads the team in scoring and sophomore Nick Souretis (10-15-25) leads in goals. Senior forwards Griffin Mudge (9-14-23), Matt Mullaney (8-9-17), Kevin Moriarty (7-7-14) and Bryce McDonough (6-7-13) complete a balanced bunch.

Junior goalie Aidan Healey has excelled. Seniors Jon Jordan (6-9-15) and Charlie Kolar (2-5-7) provide a strong two-way presence on the blue line.

King Philip (10-5-5)

League: Hockomock Kelley-Rex

Coach: Paul Carlow

State Championships (0)

The Warriors tied for second in the HKR behind Franklin. After a season of eight one- and two-goal games and five ties, they figure to be prepared for the high anxiety of postseason. Senior forward Joe Boselli (11-13-24) and junior defenseman Rocco Bianculli (6-18-24) share the team scoring lead. Junior Aiden Boulger (12-6-18), sophomore Nolan Feyler (10-6-16), senior captain Chris Daniels (5-11-16), junior Conor Cooke (5-8-13) and senior Jack Coulter (5-7-12) complete a balanced forward group.

Senior defenseman Kyle Gray (15 assists) is a superior puck mover. Seniors Jesper Makudera and Nate Ihley have both logged time in goal.

Chris Cordeiro
Barnstable

Brian Frieh
Barnstable

Will Martone
Barnstable

Jack Longueil
Barnstable

Barnstable (11-7-2)

League: Cape & Islands Atlantic

Coach: Tim Grace

State Championships (3): 1991, D1; 1980, D2; 1972, D2

The Raiders are one of only seven D1 teams to eclipse 70 goals this season. How that production translates in the postseason remains to be seen as they finished 1-4-2 against teams in this draw. Senior Chris Cordeiro (15-19-34) and senior captain Brian Frieh (11-17-28) pace the offense with support from junior Dillon Huntington (10-7-17), senior Jack Sciopone (6-8-14) and sophomore Will Jones (7-4-11).

Junior Will Martone (3-14-17) and seniors Jack Longeuil (3-12-15), Cooper O’Neil and Will Cogswell are top defensemen in front of junior goalie Conor Higgins (2.41 GAA, 3 SO).

Jack Hamilton
Falmouth

North Wilson
Falmouth

Stone Devlin
Falmouth

Nick Champani
Falmouth

Falmouth (12-9-1)

League: Cape & Islands Atlantic

Coach: Paul Moore

State Championships (4*): 1996, D1; 1982, D2/EMass. *(No State Champion); 1981, D2; 1979, D2

The Clippers claimed the first-ever C&I Atlantic title by taking three of four points from long-time rival Barnstable and closed with a consolation game win against Archbishop Williams in their Buddy Ferreira Classic.  Captains junior Stone Devlin (16-15-31) and senior Nick Champani (16-14-30) steered the offense along with seniors Jack McKenzie (12-15-27) and Eric Wainwright (5-13-18). Sophomore Darren McDonald (7-10-17) and junior Max McDonald (5-10-15) have also had strong years.

Senior North Wilson sees most of the work in goal. Senior captain Jack Hamilton and senior Drew Scolaro lead the defense.

Franklin (9-7-4)

League: Hockomock Kelley-Rex

Coach: Anthony Sarno

State Championships (2*): 2016, D1; 1983, D2/EMass. *(No State Champion)

The Panthers scrapped and clawed their way to the HKR title and turned in a couple of strong non-league efforts in a 3-3 tie with North qualifier St. John’s (S) and a 2-0 loss to Hingham. Senior Kyle Hedvig (8-5-13), juniors Conor O’Neil (9-3-12) and Declan Lovett (5-7-12) and sophomore Dylan Marchand (4-9-13) lead the offense.

Seniors Colin Hedvig (4-9-13) and Tommy Tasker (8-2-10) are strong two-way players and are joined on the back line by junior Joe LeBlanc. Senior Ray Ivers (3 SOs) handles the goaltending.

Drew Cohen
Wellesley

Wellesley (10-8-2)

League: Bay State Carey

Coach: Paul Donato

State Championships (0)

Three moments in particular stand out – veteran coach Paul Donato’s 300th career win when the Raiders topped North Attleboro, 4-1, on Jan. 20; a pretty convincing 5-2 decision of Braintree on Feb. 5 capped by an empty net goal by four-year starting goalie Drew Hubbard (5 SOs, 51 career wins); and a 2-2 with Natick on Feb.12 that secured a tourney berth.

The Raiders allowed two goals or fewer 16 times with Hubbard aided by an active defense that includes senior captain Will McGraw and seniors Emmett Coakley and Ethan Lomes. Key forwards include senior captain Drew Cohen, senior Liam Jensen and junior Jackson Claflin.

Walpole (9-8-5)

League: Bay State Herget

Coach: Ron Dowd

State Championships (4): 1965, D1; 1963, D1; 1953, D1; 1945, D1

The Rebels won their final three games to qualify, including a pair of 2-1 wins against fellow qualifiers Marshfield and King Philip. Junior Kevin McElaney (9-10-19), senior Tom Fruci (8-7-15), junior Ethan McDonough (6-6-12) and sophomore Declan Hunter (6-4-10) spark the offense.

Senior captains Liam Fisher (4-10-14) and Marc Hirshom (4-7-11) are both a force on the blue line. Junior Jack Curran is solid in the cage.

Mansfield (7-7-6)

League: Hockomock Kelley-Rex

Coach: Michael Balzarini

State Championships (0)

The Hornets squeezed into the draw by winning two of their final three games – an impressive 2-1 decision of North qualifier Shrewsbury and a 6-2 win against Rhode Island neighbor Barrington on the season’s final day. Senior forwards Chris Jenkins (13-17-30), Kevin Belanger (11-10-21) and Jake Lund (12-8-20) have accounted for roughly 70 percent of the offensive output. Sophomore Kyle Oakley (4 goals) is a player to watch.

Senior Joseph Troiano (3-7-10) leads the defense and senior goalie Sean McCafferty (2.44 GAA, .910 PCT) has put together a solid season.

Archbishop Williams (8-8-4)

League: Catholic Central Large

Coach: Derackk Curtis

State Championships (2): 1997, D1; 1991, D2;

Worth noting right away – the Bishops fared well against North Sectional qualifiers, defeating Austin Prep and St. Mary’s and tying Bishop Fenwick in league play and also scoring a signature win against St. John’s (S). They are not to be trifled with.

Juniors Conor Kelly (9-10-19), Christian Koylion (6-9-15) and James O’Toole (8 goals) are the most consistent forwards. Junior defensemen Alex Umbro (4-6-10) and Nick Recupero (6-3-9) contribute at both ends of the ice. Sophomore Nick Buccella has seen the majority of work in goal.

Bobby Carew
Milton

John Walsh
Milton

Luke Calcagno
Milton

Colin Hoey
Milton

Milton (7-10-4)

League: Bay State Herget

Coach: Chris Watson

State Championships (0)

The Wildcats earned their spot in the field as the second-place finisher in the BSH. They showed their capabilities in ties with Natick and Braintree and a win against Walpole. Senior captain Bobby Carew (12-11-23), senior John Walsh (7-9-16), freshman Jimmy Fallon (10-3-13), seniors Owen Leddy (3-8-11) and Jack Boylan (2-8-10) and senior captain Finn Doherty (5 goals) provide balance up front.

Seniors John Carey and Rob Ricciardi and juniors Colin Hoey, Ronan Robinson and Luke Calgagno man the blue line. Sophomore Ryan Dexter and senior Hudson Smith share time in goal.

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
Kevin Doyle
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