Rhode Island HS Hockey – State Championship Division (D1) Preview

Gary Demopoulos
Gary Demopouloshttp://www.hnibnews.com
Gary Demopoulos has been covering prep school hockey for the HNIB News for over 30 years, and has been the editor of the HNIB News since 2005. A former sportswriter and news editor at the Woburn (MA) Daily Times Chronicle, he has been the HNIB News' key reporter for Mens Prep School hockey since 1988, as well as womens hockey, both at the prep school and high school levels. for almost 20 years. Gary also helps organize and oversee HNIB's many summer tournaments and festivals for scholastic players.

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Warwick joins Division 1 this winter bringing the total of teams to 11. Division 1 will be broken down into two divisions as well.

Division A will have Mt. St. Charles, Burrillville, Prout School, Smithfield and Warwick Co-Op.

Division B consists of Bishop Hendricken, LaSalle, Moses Brown, East Greenwich, Barrington and Cumberland

DIVISION A

MT. ST. CHARLES

Coach: Matt Merten

The Mounties have been hit hard by graduation the last few years, but still will be right in the thick of things.

In senior captain Macaiah Bascombe (22 pts), MSC posesses one of the league’s top forwards. He will be assisted in the offensive zone by senior David Byrne (assistant captain), junior Kyle Smolan and sophomore Antonio Lombari. Look for sophomore Matt Davenport and freshman Logan Lefebvre to battle for time.

On defense, senior Jacob Goodwin, an assistant captain, will have an important role on the blue line.

In the nets, four-year starter Jayson Mandeville (8-1-1 last year) is back. He was an All State selection last winter.

BURRILLVILLE

Coach: Dave Farrell

A state semifinalist last season, the Broncos are hoping to go even further this year with a solid returning cast leading the way.

A young nucleus up front is powered by senior Cam Desante (11 pts), junior Jack Farrell (11 pts) and sophomores Joe DeCesare and Stevie Rodrigues. Two more sophomores to look for are Ryan Frenette and Ethan Murphy.

Senior Mitchell Farrell is the backbone of Burrillville’s defense, which could feature a pair of freshmen in Cam Potter and Sean Farrell.

Senior Bryden Hopkins is ready to take over full-time between the pipes.

SMITHFIELD

Coach: Bob Jackson

The Sentinels have just six seniors this winter, and three of them are goaltenders. Therefore, the younger guys will have to step up, coach Jackson says.

Seniors Chris Disano and Cody Paiva will be offensive catalysts. Senior goalie Jacob Selema is a veteran presence.

On defense, juniors Chase Rinker and James Sylvester, and Matthew Payne will eat up minutes on the blue line.

NIck Gamba
Prout School

PROUT SCHOOL

Coach: John Gaffney

Hoping to finish in the top half of the division, the Crusaders look to capitalize on their scoring opportunities, and play sound defense.

Seniors Cam Fonseca and Billy Costello and key holdovers up front for coach Gaffney, who welcomes a quartet of freshmen – Aidan Forcier, Liam McIntosh, Drew Nowell and Cael Burnett – to the front lines.

Junior Nick Gamba and sophomore Josh Ewing-Chow will be defensive stalwarts in front of sophomore goalie Owen Glass.

WARWICK CO-OP

Coach: Michael Boyajian

Newcomers to Division 1 this season, Warwick will “need to adjust to the speed of play and learn to play smart, aggressive hockey in all three zones,” said coach Boyajian.

A bunch of holdover forwards had some good numbers a year ago in sophomore Ryan Barlow (27 pts), juniors Charlie Clements (23 pts), Brady Martin (14 pts) and Sean Mullaney (12 pts), and senior Jacob Rianna (8 pts). Junior Lucas Hemond, sophomore Aidan McNally and freshman Richie Cavanaugh provide depth.

The Warwick defense gets involved in the offensive zone, as juniors Ethan Pezzulo (14 pts), Jacob Pickering (12 pts) and Gerard Schifino (10 pts), and sophomore Cooper Grossguth all return.

Sophomore Braxton Bragg is expected to start in goal, with senior Sam Noel in the mix as well.

DIVISION B

Michael Brouillard LaSalle Academy

LASALLE ACADEMY

Coach: Shawn Tingley

With its entire defensive unit back, and strength in goal, the Rams fully expect to compete for a state championship.

For the offense to do its job, players like senior Michael Brouillard (second team All-Division), senior Dylan Johnson, and sophomores Tommy Sheehan and Ronan Peterson will need to deliver.

Caleb Jawharjian LaSalle Acad.

A stout defense features seniors Ben Riccitelli, Connor Barrett and Zach Smith, junior Marc Frateschi and sophomore Andrew Bradley, all regulars a year ago.

And in goal, senior Max Cute was a first team All Division selection a year ago. He is backed by junior Caleb Jawharjian.

BARRINGTON

Coach: Kevin Croke

Led by the efforts of three senior captains, the Eagles hope to make some noise this winter in the Division 1 circles.

Coach Croke expects captains Sam Faulkner (10 pts – 4 shorthanded goals) and Brenen Gazeryan to be amongst the league leaders in scoring. Supplemental scoring is expected from junior Cole Vieira and sophomores Trevor Snow and Adam Gorman.

Senior captain Josh LeBlanc will lead a young blue line corps, which will also feature Tucker Squires, Christian Vieira and Brody Carroll.

In goal, sophomore Cam Siwik played every minute as a freshman and will handle the load in net.

BISHOP HENDRICKEN

Coach: Mike Soscia

Co-state champs last winter, the Hawks figure on a tight league race again this year.

An explosive offensive group is led by Ryan Staples, Matt Morietti, Nick Defelice and Drew Gayman.

Defensive stalwarts for coach Soscia are Alex Giuliano, Colten Whitfield and Aidan Pennacchini, with Drew Carr returning in goal.

Newcomers to watch out for include Nate Marshall and Dylan Cappelli.

EAST GREENWICH

Coach: Don Dunwoody

The Avengers are expecting to be competiive with some good numbers at each position.

The senior trio of Matt McKenzie, Cory Szabo and Nick Paskalis, along with junior Cam Gaffney and sophomore Colin Walsh, will drive the EG offense, with new junior Sonny Arsenault looking to find his spot.

Cam Warrener (senior), Charlie Gaffney (senior) and PJ Casey (junior) hold down the fort on the blue line. Junior Peter Doorley adds to the mix.

Two goalies return in senior Cole Barron and junior Giordan Gulatti.

MOSES BROWN

Coach: David Antonelli

If the Quakers are to have success on the ice this winter, a deep returning cast could be the reason why.

Returning forwards include juniors Hank Alessandro, Aidan Aggarwal, Owen O’Farrell, Gabe Mamdani and Ethan Gameau, and sophomore Gunnar Lundin.

Seniors Tyler Rose and Ian McCormack, junior Max Travers and sophomore Rowan Aggarwal are back on defense, and junior D.J. Plante and sophomore Cam Lussier return in the nets.

Freshman additions to the roster include Kyle Bethune, Everett Baldwin, Jack Travers and Cole Wilson.

** Cumberland will also be in Division 1 this winter. No information was available as of post-time.

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