by Nate Gordon ’16
Wildcats vs. Canterbury Saints Preview
“When we leave campus, nothing else matters. Nothing else matters except playing hockey. You guys won’t have any classes, you have no homework. You’re going on break. But before you go on break, you have one really big hockey game to play.” This is what Williston Coach Derek Cunha told the team about this week’s game against Canterbury after its 6-3 win over Académie St. Louis last Saturday, the 16th.
The Wildcats are hoping to build on this win as they head down to New Milford, Conn. to take on the Canterbury Saints for the team’s first regular season game.
Canterbury also won its scrimmage last Saturday in a 3-0 victory over the Hill School from N.Y.C. The Saints are led by senior forwards Lucas Habich and Mark Bowen, as well as junior Shane Sellar. These three combined for 81 points last season.
Yesterday, Friday the 22nd, the Wildcats watched part of the game film from one of last year’s losses to the Saints. While the Wildcats will be facing a new Canterbury team, of course, Coach Cunha pointed out tendencies in Canterbury’s style of play:
- They keep the puck wide, stretching the ice on offense.
- They shoot from everywhere.
- Their penalty kill is very aggressive—not just waiting for the other team to make a mistake.
Coach Cunha told the team that “if we get the puck moving, we should be good tomorrow.”
Team Appoints Captains
In a team meeting yesterday, Friday the 22nd, the team appointed seniors Phil Angelo, Nick Staub, and Max Willman as team captains. All three said they are honored to be named captains of the hockey team. Angelo, a forward who had a goal and two assists last Saturday, added, “It feels great, it’s an honor, ready to lead the bice (bros/boys).”
Coach Cunha said, however, “We expect in general that all the seniors take on a leadership role.”
The final roster was set yesterday, with two sophomore defensemen sent down to JV. These two players will be practicing with the varsity team during the week, but will then join the JV squad for games. Besides the two goalies who played last Saturday, Shane Mason ’16 and Tim Nowacki ’14, three other goalies have been battling for a spot on the team. Coaches Cunha and Kyle Hanford decided that the three goalies will rotate, with one practicing with the varsity team each week, while the other two will be with JV.
The final roster includes a total of 20 players, with 12 forwards, six defensemen, and two goalies.
Updates During Tomorrow’s Game
For Williston vs. Canterbury game updates, I will tweeting from the team’s feed, @WillistonHockey. Game highlights, as well as reactions from players and coaches, will available after the game in my game report.