NH D2 Preview: Will Experienced Spaulding Take The Next Step?

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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SPAULDING (20-1-0)

Brayden McGary Spaulding
Brayden McGary
Spaulding
Brody McDougal Spaulding
Brody McDougal
Spaulding

Though perhaps a bit short on numbers, the Raiders returns a wealth of experience from last year’s State finalist. Coach Paul George anticipates continued improvement throughout the season.

There is strength from back to front, starting with junior goalies Brayden McGary and Ben Toussaint, who both have double-digit career wins and deep post-season experience.

Skilled senior captain Kam Trepanier will shift from forward to defense as needed. Senior captain Kerry Winfrey provides quickness on the blue line. Seniors Drew Healey and Nick Bennett provide a physical presence at forward. Senior Brody McDougal and sophomore Ashton Langis complete the veteran nucleus on defense.


DOVER (17-4-0)

Steve Constas Dover
Steve Constas
Dover
Kieran Lombard Dover
Kieran Lombard
Dover

Steve Riker and his staff are tasked with re-tooling a defense that graduated All-State goalie Luc Ravenelle and its top four defensemen from a State Championship club.

Senior goalie Nick Martinen (.952 save pct.) played well in limited action a year ago. A half-dozen players will compete for time on the blue line and Riker said the goal will be to limit opponents to no more than three goals per game.

The offense will feature talented senior Kieran Lombard (15-21-36) along with senior Griffin Guerra, who returns after a year away from the program, junior Steven Constas (7-12-19) and sophomore Eric DeGregorio (4-10-14). New freshmen Jameson Goodridge (F) and Alex Post (D) add depth.

GOFFSTOWN (9-9-1)

New coach Ben Slocum inherits a young team and a program that is traditionally successful.  “Because this is going to be a young team, my primary focus will be good team chemistry with the incoming freshman and upperclassman. As a coaching staff we want to build off the strengths of each player,” Slocum says.

Slocum will build around a core group senior captain and forward Sam Greenwood, junior captain and defenseman Nick Nault, senior forward Ben Roy and senior goaltender Colin Holt. A large freshman class projects to have an immediate impact.

KEENE (11-9-0)

The Blackbirds look to build on last year’s quarterfinal appearance behind a number of three-year juniors. Assistant coach Chris McIntosh noted that, for the first time in several years, Keene has a natural goalie instead of a converted skater. Keene should also benefit from its new home, the $9.2 million Keene Ice Center.

[one_fourth]
Hunter Gallant Keene
Hunter Gallant
Keene
[/one_fourth] [one_fourth]
Nathaniel Darwin Keene
Nathaniel Darwin
Keene
[/one_fourth] [one_fourth]
Gaetano Delonge Keene
Gaetano Delonge
Keene
[/one_fourth] [one_fourth_last]
Griffin Kane Keene
Griffin Kane
Keene
[/one_fourth_last]

The junior trio of Hunter Gallant (12-17-29), Nathaniel Darwin (8-19-27) and Gaetano DeLonge (7-4-11) will lead the offense. Sophomore Owen Haas (16 pts) is back as well. Junior Griffin Kane anchors the defense.  Conditioning and speed are key elements of the Blackbirds’ game.

We have a lot of great athletes on our team and we are looking for them to outwork and outskate their opponents each night. If we can spend more time down low in the opposing teams zone we will be a tough team to beat,” says McIntosh.

WINDHAM (14-6-0)

The Jaguars enjoyed great success in their first season as a standalone program, winning their first playoff game and advancing to the semifinals. Coach Jerry Manchester is excited about this year’s prospects as only three players graduated.

Junior goalie Christian Bassi had a stellar sophomore campaign, posting four shutouts to go along with a 1.74 goals against average. Senior Mike Tardif (11 points) is back on defense, a group that should be bolstered by the return of junior Chris Martel from the Boston Jr. Rangers. Senior Chad Desautels (15-10-25) leads the forwards.

“As a team we’ll be focused on improving communication, staying out of the box and executing on special teams,” says Manchester.

TIMBERLANE (4-14-0)

Coach Steve Costa will count on the leadership of senior forward Alex Passifiume (8-18-26), and senior defensemen Ryan Lewis (11 points) and Jared Spang as the youthful Owls look to take the next step.

Key returnees include junior center Kyle Wood (10 points), sophomore center Jake Heckman (10 points) and sophomore defensemen Matt Lanceleve and Andrew  Bedard. Depth will be culled from a large group of freshmen and players moving up from the JV team.

PEMBROKE/CAMPBELL (3-15-0)

Coach Marc Noel’s club will again face the challenges associated with youth and will learn on the fly. A pair of players from Campbell will lead the way.

After being sidelined by season-ending injuries early in both his sophomore and junior seasons, senior Trevor Roche will be looked to for scoring. Noel said “Trevor has been a leader in the locker room. All of his teammates look up to him and like him.”  On defense, Jake Tremblay will be counted on as a leader in the back end and will team with Roche to form the core of P-C’s special teams.

SOMERSWORTH/COE-BROWN (3-15-0)

The Bearcats return their top six forwards and top four defensemen in front of new senior goalie Hunter Michaud. “If we can fine-tune our systems then we should be OK,” said coach Bryant Lausberg.

Key returnees include forwards Will Ohrenberger, Joel Boulange and Casey Pridham along with defensemen Cole Gagne and Joey Morrisette. New defensemen Brett Dodier and Jake Spainhower provide depth.

WINNACUNNET (9-10-0)

Jack Rademacher Winnacunnet
Jack Rademacher
Winnacunnet
James Nash Winnacunnet
James Nash
Winnacunnet

A number of key players return for coach Chris Myers as the Warriors seek another tournament berth.

Chief among them is standout senior keeper Morgan McGirl. Junior defenseman Jack Rademacher provides a sturdy net-front presence while seniors Brian Affaunt and James Nash will spark the forwards. Look for new forwards Rich Hardon and Conor Allyn to add to the attack.

LEBANON (12-7-2)

The Raiders return 10 experienced forwards but how they fare will likely hinge on their commitment to team defense. “All five guys on the ice must commit to back checking, blocking shots and staying position,” said coach Gary Smith.

Senior goalie Chad Fazio posted nine wins a year ago to go along with a 2.06 gaa and .916 save percentage. Seniors Nate Kriplin and Noah Gaudette return as the top pair on the back line. Junior Carter Adams leads a large group of untested defensemen.

Offense shouldn’t be an issue. Juniors Nate Gariepy (11-17-28) and Nate Damren (9-8-17) and seniors Cal Garland (11 goals) and Brendan Kelley (10 points) lead the way. Seniors T.J. Barber, Nick Haidari, Cam Perron and Cormac Coyle, junior Peter Elder and sophomore Ian Garland return with experience.

MERRIMACK (14-4-0)

A large contingent returns from the club that took State Champion Dover to OT in a semifinal loss. The Tomahawks have depth at forward and on defense as they look to build on that experience.

At forward, coach Matt Davis will look to senior captain Aaron Tupper, senior assistant captain Ryan Downie, junior assistant captain John Tiano and sophomore Stephen LiCata to lead the way.

The defense will be built around senior Tyler Brewster, who can shift to forward as needed, and senior Kyle Feeney. Sophomore Gregg Amato returns in goal. Sophomore transfer Regan Sedlar, from Manchester Memorial, should step in.

PORTSMOUTH/NEWMARKET (5-12-1)

Beau Arsenault Portsmouth
Beau Arsenault
Portsmouth
Johnny Witkowski Portsmouth
Johnny Witkowski
Portsmouth

New coach William Widi takes the helm for the Clippers and will stress special teams excellence and team defense while looking for players willing to take chances to make plays.

Senior Johnny Witkowski (13-9-22) and junior Beau Arsenault (9-12-21) will power the offense, aided by senior Jack Alden (11 points) and senior Jared Vincent (12 points). New sophomore Luke Squire should have an impact.

Senior Luke Lacroce (4-7-11) is the top defenseman and sophomore Lance Lavoie returns in goal after a busy rookie campaign. Look for freshman Holmes Strong to step right in on the back line.

KINGSWOOD (11-7-2)

Only four players graduated from the team that advanced to the quarterfinals and were an HNIB Top 5 selection. The Knights will look to continue that progression under coach Mike Potenza.

There is depth at forward where seniors Sam Bonenfant, Jake Vatalaro, Austin Chasse and Owen Gonya and new freshmen Sam Danais and Matt White project as immediate contributors. Senior Peter Marshall will lead the defense.

HOLLIS-BROOKLINE/DERRYFIELD (5-13-0)

Coach Kurt Mithoefer says the Warriors’ focus will be on defense while developing an efficient power play and relying on quick puck movement.

Senior center Michael Chiasson (10 points) and junior wing Sam Poisson will lead the offense. Junior defenseman Stew Arend and sophomore goalie Patrick MacDonald form the nucleus of the defenseman. Freshman Max Porter projects to step in on the blue line.

OYSTER RIVER (5-14-2)

The Bobcats will feature strength on defense as they look to bounce back into contention. A fair number of seasoned forwards also return for Coach Griff Richard.

Senior captain Grif Snow and classmate Jeff Powers are the top defensemen. Junior Aaron Thibault and sophomore Tyler Harvey return with experience while sophomore Jake Kaplan provides depth. Junior Liam McNamara gets the nod in goal.

Senior forward Porter McManus (12 points) is the top returning scorer. Juniors Devin Kaya, Michael Donovan, Matt Bishop and Sam Dreher all logged regular time a year ago. Junior Dylan O’Connell and sophs Sam Davies and Ethan Kesler step up from the JVs.

  • Bow also will be in the New Hampshire Division 2 league. No information was available on the team as of this posting.

 

 

 

 

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