Category Archives: Hockey News

Wildcats Sweep Penguins

Ah, the 2020-2021 “season,” a season that will live in everyone’s minds as the year that teams were put together with chewing gum and duct tape as coaches tried to cobble together lineups out of their remaining players due to Covid protocols of some and the defections of others to junior and club teams.  The weekend of February 19th proved to be just that for the Williston and Cushing hockey teams as both teams tried to figure out how to sweep the series with many in their pre-Covid arsenals missing.  On Friday and Saturday, Williston would harness the hockey gods good will and take two from the Penguins, 6-2 and 4-3.   

Friday night saw the Wildcats get on the board at the 11:08 mark when junior Gavin Havens (Franklin, MA) made a quick outlet pass to Connor Hagness (Guilford, CT) on the left wing who exploded through the neutral zone, broke left as he entered the zone and let a Hagness Howitzer go that beat the Cushing goalie over the shoulder on the short side.  It was a nifty goal and his first of four on the night that gave him the opportunity to try out all his goal celebration moves that he crafted so carefully over the past five months.  

Williston got on the board eight minutes later on the power play when Roscoe Eade made a pass from the left half-wall to Charles Monteith at the high point of the umbrella; Monteith let a low wrister go that was corralled by Riley Van Son on the crease.  VS made a move, and buried his opportunity putting the ‘Cats up 2-0.  Cushing made it 2-1 two minutes later. 

Then, two minutes into the second frame, a puck was dumped into the Cushing half-wall and chased down by Van Son who won the puck and made a nice pass to Will Gaca.  Gaca drove to the net and let a back hand go that beat the Cushing goaltender on the far post.  Gaca would say that the goal was easier than landing a catfish in the North Carolina heat.  His coaches looked at him funny but ultimately agreed. 

Hagness got his second of the game when sophomore Joe “Beaston” Easton got him a puck on the right-hand side of the neutral zone.  Hagness blew into the Cushing end, cut to the middle and let a little wrist shot go that somehow squeaked past the Cushing goalie.  Williston was up, 4-1. 

A little while later, senior Will Tripp got into the action skating in the Cushing zone, cutting right, and making a backdoor pass to a streaking who Hagness who took the pass, deked the Cushing goalie and beat him on a backhand.  5-1, good guys. 

Williston went up 6-1 two minutes into the third when Havens made a pass behind the net to junior Dan McKiernan who skated into the right corner.  Tripp scissored past him and D-Mak made a nice drop pass to the crafty defenseman who then made a seeing-eye pass to Hagness’ stick five feet from the crease. Hagness took care of the rest. 

Cushing would get one more but it would not be enough.  Williston won, 6-2.  Of note was junior Ryan Hennigan who got the start.  Hennigan made a number of saves that showed that he was ready to battle.   

The next day, Williston traveled to Central Massachusetts to take on Cushing once again.  Williston got on the board three minutes into a five-minute major power play when post-grad Ben Cheney grabbed a puck in the right corner, drove behind the net and fed Hagness in the low slot.  The Cushing goalie made the initial save but Van Son plowed through the crease, gathered the puck, and slid the puck into an open net.  Cushing tied it up a few minutes later and eventually increased it going up 2-1. 

Hagness tied up the game off a pass from Havens who chipped the puck past a Cushing defenseman to a streaking Hagness who broke in on a breakaway, beating the Cushing goalie on a backhand.  

Williston’s third goal had a bit of the dramatic touched with a bit of puck luck.  Williston’s Tripp was called for a delayed penalty for, coincidentally, a trip.  With the Cushing goalie pulled to gain an extra attacker, a purple forward made a pass to the point that split both defensemen and travelled the length of the ice and into the empty net.  Cushing would challenge the play but to no avail.  Eade was credited with the goal.   

Williston went up 4-2 on a four-on-four when a Cushing player made a behind the back pass from the corner that missed its target and landed right on the stick of Hagness.  Hagness was shot out of a cannon and raced down the left side of the ice with Gaca cruising down the right making it a 2-1.  Hagness eyed Gaca the entire way but at the last second buried a wrist shot on the Cushing goalie who was a bit off his angle.  Cushing would score to make it 4-3 but that was all for the day as Williston swept the weekend. 

Williston was set to play this weekend but with Covid running amuck in Worcester and Williston with only eight skaters for the weekend, the athletic department and the Williston coaching staff decided to forgo a final game with Cushing Friday night. 

This has been a difficult and trying year for not just Williston, but all hockey programs, and the coaching staff could not be happier with their group who worked hard all season on and off the ice.  They came to the rink every day and focused on getting better.   

So, hello baby, we’re gone, goodbye.  Thank you for all your work and dedication, gentlemen.  For those of you who are carrying on to other pastures: good luck, we will miss you.  For those of you who will be coming back next year, and to the new crop of Wildcats that will be joining us in September, it’s a great day to be a Wildcat! 

Shorthanded Williston Hockey Topples Winchendon 5-1; Lose in OT the Following Afternoon, 5-4

At 3:45 on Friday afternoon, eleven members of the Williston boy’s hockey team boarded two mini-busses destined for the Winchendon School for a 6 PM contest versus a fully stocked Wapiti team.  At 8 o’clock, those same eleven boarded those same mini-busses pocketing a 5-1 win behind a three-goal effort from new junior Dan McKiernan of Westport, CT, 30+ saves by senior Emile Savoie from Montreal, and the game-winner from Baltimore, ON’s favorite son, and Albany lacrosse commit, Adam Thistlethwaite.  At 10:05, a certain bell was ceremoniously rung back on campus. 

For five months, the Williston hockey team, like many prep school teams, trained with little-to-no hope for games as headmasters across New England tried to navigate sports during the pandemic.  Games against Avon Old Farms, Canterbury, and Salisbury in November never came to fruition due to Connecticut and Massachusetts governors shutting their respective boarders from competitions.  At Thanksgiving Break, with the blessing of Head Coach Derek Cunha, many of the members of the team joined junior and club teams in the US and Canada.  When practice began again on January 18th, Cunha and Coach Hanford were met by two goalies and three players.  Slowly, and after following quarantine protocols, the numbers crept back up.  After a weekend home-and-home with Berkshire was cancelled, Athletic Director Mark Conroy was able to secure two games with Winchendon.   

At practice on Monday, Cunha spoke to the players about the opportunity to play Winchendon this weekend and that we would only have a small number of players, including Thistlethwaite, who was claimed off waivers from Coach Blayne Lapan’s Athletic Performance team, and Owen Hunter from Coach Mike Fay’s junior varsity club.  In the meeting with Cunha on Monday, the eleven players picked up the gauntlet and bought into the system that Cunha developed between reading admission files and writing his sixty-page final capstone paper for grad school.  I’m sure many in New England looked at this game and couldn’t help but think back to the Rick Moranis box office smash, Little Giants, where younger brother Danny O’Shea (Moranis), with his depleted Pee-Wee Giants team, defeated his older brother and former Heisman Trophy winner Kevin (Ed O’Neill), and his fully loaded Pee-Wee Cowboys, except that in this real-life drama, the ending followed the Hollywood script. 

Before the game, Cunha and Winchendon Coach, Brian Troy, came up with a format to make the game equitable.  The teams would play two halves.  The first half would be twenty-two minutes, 5v5.  There would then be an intermission followed by one twelve-minute period of 4v4, and then a ten-minute period of 3v3, followed by a shoot-out.   

At the drop of the puck, Williston came out like the winds of Aeolis pressuring Winchendon and putting them on their heels.  After five minutes, the Wildcats had settled into a nice clip and both Williston coaches knew that if they could maintain the pace, the odds could fall in Williston’s favor.  

Williston struck early on a nifty goal from McKiernan who intercepted a breakout pass in the high slot, drove to the net beating the Winchendon goalie over the glove.  (Nice little story here: Dan is the son of former Williston Wildcat, Sean McKiernan, who was part of the team that won the first and only New England championship in 1986 coached by Williston’s beloved Jay Grant.) 

Winchendon got on the board a few minutes later on an errant pass from Savoie; however, this would be the last goal that would pass by number 31 as Savoie built a brick wall on the goal line and was perfect from that point on.   

Just a few minutes later, the soon-to-be Albany Great Dane, Thistlethwaite, with his locks of Samson, caught a puck in the mid-slot and let a wicked shot fly Winchendon goalie over his glove.  RIDE THE LIGHTING, A.T.! The first half ended, 2-1. 

The second half began with Winchendon on the power play.  Will “The Durham Destroyer” Gaca of Durham, NC was an instrumental part of this penalty kill effort working like a Skillsaw and getting pucks out.  A few minutes later, Williston went up 3-1 when Charles Monteith, of Raleigh, NC, dug a puck out from the right corner of the Winchendon zone and began driving behind the corner only to let a pass go to the freight train from Lloyd Harbor, NY native, Riley Van Son who buried a one-timer from the low slot.  He crashed into the boards but was ok.   

Williston went up 4-1 on the 3v3 session when Will Tripp skated up the ice with the precision of a surgeon, crossed into the Winchendon zone and made a pass to McKiernan that glanced off a Winchendon defenseman’s leg and onto number 21’s stick who was cutting in from the left side of the zone.  With the Winchendon goalie sliding to his right, McKiernan brought the puck across the crease shooting into an open net.  

McKiernan notched his third of the game when Alex Latkovski of Montreal, blocked a shot at the point and hit him with a soft backhand up the middle of the ice.  McKiernan drove into the Winchendon zone with back checkers breathing down his neck and let go a nifty shot that, again, beat the Winchendon goalie over the glove putting the contest out of reach. 

Savoie helped the Wildcats the rest of the way using the confidence he gained with the Cornwall Colts of the CCHL as he shut down the Winchendon offense on countless opportunities.  He was also helped by key blocks by seniors Latkovski (four) and Roscoe Eade of Catonsville, MD (three), and sophomore Joe “Beaston” Easton of Southwick, MA (two). 

After the final buzzer, both teams participated in a shootout.  Williston’s Monteith potted two are-you-kidding-me goals, while senior leader Latkovski, and Tripp netted one a piece taking the shootout, 4-3.   

The game puck was a “program” puck for the entire group’s effort by defeating a heavily-manned Winchendon team with only ten skaters and a goalie, 

Winchendon traveled to Williston on Saturday afternoon to complete the home-and-home series and while things looked promising for the Wildcats, who come out with a 3-0 lead in the first half of the game, the lead would not hold as the Wapiti would pull off a 5-4 victory in overtime.  Saturday would see 32 minutes of 5v5 play, the first and third periods 16 minutes each, with the middle stanza 16 minutes of 4v4 split with an ice-cut.  Coming off Friday’s effort tanks were emptying quicker than 45 second water breaks could replenish the Wildcats between their short shifts.  Goal scorers for the Wildcats on this day were Tripp (2g), Easton (1g) and Thistlethwaite (1g).     

The Williston Eleven proved their meddle this weekend and while they did not get the sweep, their hard work and determination was valiant.  And don’t worry, mom and dad, the boys went to bed early on Saturday night! 

Williston was to play the Cushing Penguins this weekend but Covid protocols have prevented the games from happening.   

Berkshire awaits next weekend.  Watch all the action on the livestream! 

Williston’s Prayers Answered—Wildcats Beat Saints, 7-2; Drops Decision to the Doors 

Seniors Tommy Harty and Jake Sacratini both had four-point nights on Wednesday as they helped lead Williston past Canterbury with a hat trick and an assist and a goal and a playmaker, respectively.  Williston played a complete game in all zones of the ice and took a decisive, 7-2 victory. 

Sacratini got on the board early when a hard forecheck by Harty forced a Canterbury defenseman to cough make an errant pass from the corner of the defensive zone to an awaiting Sacratini who intercepted the pass at the hash marks and walked in beating Cal Skwara on the far post.  Harty got his first goal of the night on the power play when Sacratini got the puck on the halfwall in the Canterbury zone, touched a pass to Tyler Varin who got the puck to the other half-wall to Will Tripp.  Tripp then found a wide open Harty, who has set up residence in the high slot on power plays, and who drilled a one-timer past Skwara.  Canterbury got a goal late in the period to get it within one. 

In the second, Williston got on a role.  The first goal came when Charlie Monteith worked a puck up the wall to d-man, Mitch Hansen, who let a blast go that was saved by Skwara but that was batted in by Matt Pimental from his belly.  Shaul Mitton got the fourth Williston goal off a sweet draw from Ryan Deschamps that landed right on his stick.  The senior winger let the howitzer go that was deflected by a Canterbury d, past Skwara.  Harty got his second of the game on the power play when Sacratini again, got the puck from Varin who let one fly from the point.  (He will be leading a youth hockey clinic on shooting in the coming weeks.  Ask him about it.)  The rebound bounced onto Harty’s stick and while the initial shot was blocked, he gathered his own rebound and tucked in a nifty backhand.  The period would end with Williston up, 5-1. 

Alex Latkovski put the ‘Cats up 6-1 when Harty won a draw to the corner, put sustained pressure on the Canterbury defenseman who tried to make a pass to his d-partner.  Latkovski intercepted the pass on the near post, corralled the puck to the front of the net and, with his long reach, beat Skwara on the far post.  Williston got their final goal of the game when Canterbury drove into the Williston zone on the power play and coughed up the puck near Williston goalie, Emile Savoie.  Will Tripp cleared the puck to Sacratini in the slot and the speedy winger cruised into the Canterbury zone and hit Harty with a backhand saucer pass that the captain buried garnering him the hat trick for the afternoon.  Canterbury would score with 1.4 seconds left but Williston took the win.  Savoie earned the win kicking out 39 saves.  The game puck went to Harty for his four-point night. 

On Friday night, Williston traveled up Route 91 to Deerfield for an evening soiree with the Green Doors.  The game was riddled with penalties and Williston took the loss, dropping the contest, 6-2.   

Deerfield came out flying at the opening of the first period stirring their already raucous crowd into a frenzy and scoring just a minute into the game.  Williston answered ten minutes later when Brandon Barrett knocked a puck from the side of the Deerfield net to Charlie Monteith behind the net.  Monteith drove to the opposite corner and slipped a puck to the slot where Matt Pimental took one-timer that beat Deerfield goalie, Justin Prete, over the glove.  The period ended, 1-1. 

In the second, Williston went up 2-1 when Varin sent a backhand pass from his own zone to sophomore Ryan Deschamps at the Deerfield blueline.  Deschamps drove to the net with Connor Hagness streaking to the post.  Deschamps tried to make the pass but it was gathered in the gut by the sprawling Deerfield d-man.  With poise, Deschamps collected the puck and put a soft backhander over the glove of Prete.  The fire was on the mountain and the Wildcats were feeling good about the direction they were headed.  However, a number of penalties cost the Wildcats even strength opportunities and, ultimately, the game, losing 6-2. 

The game was the inaugural game of the Pioneer Valley Prep Cup, a game-by-game “tournament” between Pioneer Valley schools Deerfield, Northfield Mount Herman, and Williston.  The format will be as follows: whatever school possesses the cup when two of the three teams play, the cup will be on the line.  Since Deerfield won the game, they now possess the cup until next year when they play NMH early in the season.  It is possible that the cup could be pass through the three teams during one season if, every time the cup is up for grabs, the other team wins.   

Williston had the weekend off and will travel to Albany Academy on Wednesday afternoon for a four o’clock tilt.   


Williston Ties #7 Ranked Loomis, 5-5 

Last Wednesday, Williston had a date with Loomis Chaffee in South Windsor, and just when the Wildcats thought that the Pelicans were going to pick up the check, an LC forward tied the game with just 1:48 remaining in the game.  A five-minute overtime would be for naught and both clubs would leave the rink with one point apiece forcing both clubs to go Dutch. 

Williston got on the board on the power play at the 5:46 mark of the first period when Shaul Mitton made a pass to the top of the umbrella that was collected by Zac Gmerek.  Gmerek made a quick pass to the right side of the ice to Connor Hagness, perched on the top of the face off dot, who let a one-timer go that was tipped in by Ryan Deschamps to put the Wildcats up 1-0.  Then, six-and-a-half minutes later, Alex Latkovski put hard pressure on a Loomis player along the boards forcing the puck to squeak out to the blue line to Tommy Harty who drove hard to the net and let the howitzer go from the slot beating Loomis goalie, Kyle Chauvette, over the glove.  Williston took a 2-0 lead into the first intermission. 

Loomis came out quickly in the second scoring two goals nine seconds apart.  Will Tripp put the ‘Cats up 3-2 when he made a pass to Brandon Barrett skating into the Loomis zone.  Barrett drove to the corner and made a nice back-pass to Tripp who let a shot go that was deflected into the air and tipped in by a Pelican player.  Loomis got two more goals in the period to go up 4-3. 

In the third, Tommy Harty skated into the Loomis end with Tripp at his heels.  Harty dropped the puck to Tripp and got the puck back to Harty who drove to the net causing an LC defenseman to slide across the crease leaving a wide-open Jake Sacratini charging to the far post.  Harty slid a slick pass to number nine who buried the puck past Chauvette.  Then, again on the power play, Matt Pimental won the draw back to Gmerek who let a shot go that was blocked but a serendipitous puck with eyes glided neatly onto Tyler Varin’s stick; the assistant captain let a Rhode Island rocket go from the point that was deflected by another Ocean State son, Pimental, putting the Wildcats up 5-4.  Williston tried to weather the storm but was unable to as Loomis tied the game at the end of the period.  Overtime proved unproductive for both clubs.  So, at the end of the game when all the cards were down, there was just the scratched up ice left and the broken dreams of a victory that was lost.  

Williston goalie Emile Savoie made a whopping 56 saves earning the tie. 

The Wildcats took a hiatus from campus this weekend as the entire school went on mid-winter recess.  Williston is back at it on Wednesday as they welcome the Hoggers of Northfield Mount Herman to town for a 2:45 tilt.  Excellent seats are still available.  We hope to see you there.   

Wildcats Right the Ship, Beat Westy 5-2 

At his 25th Reunion, Williston winger Alex Latkovski could have the greatest story ever told when he recounts his day against the Westminster Martlets on Monday, February 4, 2020.  The game saw the junior from Westmount, Quebec figure into all five of Williston’s goals as he scored a hat trick and accounted for two helpers.  The win helped Williston get off the skids, having lost their previous three.

Williston got on the board at the 5:06 mark of the period when junior defenseman Will Tripp received a pass from Jake Sacratini as he crossed over the Martlet blueline.  Tripp drove to the net and hit captain Tommy Harty driving to the far post.  Westminster goalie Greyson Pane made the save and let a rebound fall a few feet above the crease where Sacratini took a swipe at the puck that bounced off some shin pads and landed on a hard-cutting Latkovski’s stick who buried the rebound.  Latkovski netted his second of the game when he forced a turnover at his own blueline and, like a steam locomotive rolling down the track, he skated hard, pulling away from the Westy defensemen, faked a forehand shot and let a buttery backhand go that many-a-goalie would have struggled with.  Williston took a 2-0 lead into the first intermission.

In the second, Latkovski got into the giving business when a draw from Harty in the offensive zone was bobbled by a few Westy forwards and corralled by number nineteen who was able to get the puck toward the net.  Sacratini lay in wait on the side of the goal and banked a shot off the inside pad of Pane, putting the ‘Cats up 3-0.  Westy would get a goal with a little under two minutes remaining in the period.

In the third, Westminster made it 3-2 just five minutes into the period.  However, six minutes later and on the power play Tyler Varin received a pass from Sacratini in the middle of the ice; Varin quickly worked the puck to Tripp on the right hash mark who then made a quick pass to Harty cutting into the slot.  Harty let a low blast go that was deflected by Latkovski for the hat trick.  The final nail in the coffin came when d-man Hunter Wilson scooted a puck up to the half wall to Latkovski who chipped the puck into the neutral zone where Sacratini gathered it and buried a blue-line shot into a goalie-less net sealing the deal, 5-2.

Tonight, there were two game pucks given.  The first to Emile Savoie who earned his second win of the season and who played well, making 29 saves.  The other game puck went to Latkovski and his five-point night.

Williston has a quick turnaround playing the Loomis Chaffee Pelicans in Windsor, CT on Wednesday afternoon at 4:30.  Williston hasn’t beaten their neighbors to the south in quite some time and look to upend a solid 2019-2020 Loomis campaign.

Williston Hockey Helps Take Care of Alzheimer’s; Can’t Take Care of Gunnery   


On Saturday night, the Williston hockey teamed donned special Alzheimer’s-themed purple, green, and white jerseys and socks in their “Alzheimer’s Awareness Game” to raise money to combat this tragic disease and provide money for continued research for a cure.  The cause hits close to him with a number of players and coaches who have witnessed first-hand the disease and its effects on loved ones.  The Williston hockey team, lead by Coach Cunha’s tireless work in the weeks and days leading up to the evening, collected donations from the entire Williston community including classmates, faculty, and alumni.  Totals are still being calculated as the donations poured in online with some still on the way.  While the final score did not fall in Williston’s favor, on this night, there were bigger winners—those affected by Alzheimer’s and those who love and care for them.


Williston got behind the eight-ball early when Gunnery scored just thirty-nine seconds into the game.  Down, but not out, the Wildcats traded blows with the Highlander team until the 10:08 mark when Alex Latkovski, along the right wall of the Gunnery zone, got a stick on the puck that squeaked to Jake Sacratini at the right circle; he made a pass tZac Gmerek who let a low rocket go that a fortuitous Sacratini, driving to the net, was able to tip in from just below the inside hash marks of the slot.  The period ended, 1-1.   

Both teams continued to go back and forth until the middle of the second when Connor Hagness picked up an errant puck on the left half wall of the Williston zone, skated into the neutral zone, making his way to the right wing.  Hagness then drove outside to the right circle’s hash marks and made a sweet drop pass to a just-getting-over-the-flu-but-he-don’t-care Shaul Mitton who let a right-handed snap shot go that found the near corner of the goal beating Gunnery goalie, Dan Zajkowski.  While Shaul had missed the last week, he sure didn’t feel like a stranger at the 9:37 mark of the period as he was mobbed by his mates.  Then, just six minutes later, sloppy neutral zone play by Gunnery gave the Wildcats a 3-1 as Tommy Harty drove down the ice, left of center, made a back-pass to Sacratini who drove to the net and hit Latkovski who was driving to the far post with a soft backhander that was promptly buried and put the ‘Cats up 3-1.  However, with one-second left and on the power play, Gunnery pulled within one. 

Gunnery would take advantage of a breakdown in the defensive zone in the third period and tie the game. Williston had countless opportunities but could not pull ahead.  The game headed to overtime and Gunnery won it at the 1:40 mark.  

The entire Williston hockey team would like to thank everyone who supported the Alzheimer’s Awareness night.  It was a tremendous show of good will and community and hopefully can help to lead to a cure of this horrible disease.   

Williston head’s to the greatest state in the Union—New York—on Wednesday to take on the streaking Millbrook Mustangs at 4:30. See you on the road. 

Williston Wins Two, Loses Two  

Williston took a two-game winning streak into its away game against Worcester last Wednesday and extended it to three by defeating the Highlanders, 9-3.  

The first period saw both clubs try to feel each other out with a number of scoring opportunities but alas, neither team ripped the twine.  

In the second period, however, Williston came out guns blazing getting on the board at the 13:23 mark of the period when Will Tripp made an in-zone, rink-wide pass to Tommy Harty who made a back diagonal pass to Jake Sacratini flying down the slot.  The Montreal-native buried the shot between the Worcester goalie’s pads.  Williston’s second goal came when Tyler Varin took a shot from the left hash marks that the goalie gloved down high but could not control; the puck dropped to his feet and Alex Latkovski tapped in the rebound.  Connor Hagness netted the third goal of the game when Zach Gmerek put the puck into the left corner and Shaul Mitton zipped a pass cross-crease to a patient Connor Hagness.   

Worcester got on the board at the 4:17 mark but Williston answered two minutes later while short handed when Tripp broke out of the Worcester zone and flew down the left-hand boards.  Mitton streaked toward the net and Tommy Harty was the high man on the drive.  Tripp made a backdiagonal pass to number eight who made a quick pass back to Tripp who then banked a shot off the goalie’s stick for their fourth goal of the game.  Latkovski got his second of the game when he stepped out of the penalty box, took a pass from Roscoe Eade from the defensive zone and showed how you stick handle in a phone booth by driving toward the net and putting a backhander into the net from the goal crease.  It was a nifty goal that put the Wildcats up 5-1. 

In the third, Tommy Harty scored an unassisted goal when he collected an errant puck at the blueline and buried a shot past the Worcester goalie from the hash marks.  Brandon Barrett got his first of the year when he got a pass in the high slot and buried the puck in an all-in-onemotion shot to the far side.  Williston would score two more times with goals from David Novotny (assisted by Sacratini) and Ryan Deschamps (assisted by Tripp and Hunter Wilson.)  The game puck when to Alex Latkovski for playing an excellent game.  Emile Savoie and Ryan Hennigan combined for the win. 

Williston traveled to Winchendon on Friday night for a 6 o’clock tilt with the Wapitis.  Williston got down early in the game and could never rebound, losing the game 6-1.  The Wildcat’s lone goal was scored off a rebound by Tommy Harty.  Latkovski and Novotny got the helpers. The box of rain continued on Saturday afternoon when Berkshire beat Williston 7-1. Down 2-0 with about 5 minutes left in the second period, the floodgates opened as the Bears scored 4 more to close out the 2nd. Connor Hagness scored for Williston, assisted by Tommy Harty. 

On Wednesday, Vermont Academy dropped by Lossone for a matinee against the Wildcats.  The game was tight early but Williston was able to pull away and take the game, 8-4.  Ryan Hennigan got his first start in net for the home team. 

Will Tripp got Williston on the board early in the period when he played the pinball wizard shooting a puck that deflected off two Vermont d-men and into the net past goalie Mason Kucenski.  Vermont answered almost immediately on a man-up deflection as Wildcat in orange and black let a shot go from the half-wall that deflected off his forwardstick and past Hennigan.  Williston answered back nearly fourteen minutes later, short-handed, when Zac Gmerek got a puck to Matt Pimental who skated into the Vermont end, dropped a pass to Ryan Deschamps and cut toward the net.  Deschamps drove to the corner and hit a wide-open Pimental in front who deflected the puck in.  Williston went into the dressing room up, 2-1. 

The Wildcats got things going early in the second when Connor Hagness got a pass from Tyler Varin and skated around and into the slot.  In the meantime, winger Alex Latkovski skated from behind the net and took a pass from the ever-moving Hagness and tucked in a nifty backhander past Kucenski. Williston made it 4-1 when Hunter Wilson busted up the right side into the VA zone and let a shot go from the corner that puzzled Kucenski, who couldn’t control the rebound as the puck landed by the near-post.  A hard-skating Pimental collected his second goal of the game.  Brandon Barrett got into the mix when Pimental won the puck in the corner, skated behind the net and made a pass through the crease that he got a stick on.  It was Barrett’s second on the year, making it 5-1.  

Williston’s sixth goal came when Connor Hagness skated in on a breakaway, made a nifty move but brought a five-iron rather than a pitching wedge to the game and wasn’t able elevate the puck; no matter, he got his own rebound, took the puck behind the net and fed Latkovski in front who buried his second of the game.  Vermont scored two-in-a-row but Williston bookended the scoring for the period when Barrett got his second goal of the game off a hard-working Richard Stefanik who won the puck behind the net and made a cross-slot pass to Barrett who buried the rebound.  Williston took a 7-3 lead into the intermission.   

Williston allowed one more goal in the third period but the Wildcats sealed the win with their eighth of the game when Latkovski made a pass from the left dot of the Vermont zone to an open Hagness who fired a laser that was blocked by Kucenski but drilled home by Deschamps camped out on the crease. 

Williston outshot Vermont 64-20 on the day.  Brandon Barrett earned the game puck and Hennigan ended the game with 16 saves.   

On Saturday the boys varsity hockey team will face off against Gunnery at 6 in an Alzheimer’s Awareness game.  Our team has been deeply affected by this disease and as such it is the focus of this year’s charitable giving. The team will wear custom-created uniforms supporting the cause and there will be a raffle to win a game jersey. There is already quite a buzz on Twitter and Instagram about the game, the cause, and the jerseys! 

If you can’t make it to the game and would like to participate in the raffle there will be a Venmo option at @WillistonNorthamptonSchool and denote ENDALZ. Tickets will be 1 ticket for $2, 3 for $5, 10 for $10, and body length for $20.  Your tickets will then be added into the raffle!  All proceeds will go to the Cure Alzheimer’s Fund at 

See you there! 

Williston Beats the Berkshire Bears, 5-2 

When the last bolt of sunshine hit the Berkshire Mountains on Saturday night, Williston headed to the dressing room after three hard-fought periods with its second win inarow and its first in Sheffield, MA since January 10th, 2009 when Williston won the contest 3-2.  This time, Williston won 5-2. 

Williston looked to get things going quickly on Saturday afternoon, and that they did scoring just a 1:04 into the game.  Williston worked the puck deep into the Berkshire zone and Berkshire attempted to clear the puck up the lefthand boards.  A fortuitous jump by d-man Hunter Wilson enabled the junior defenseman to scoop the puck off the wall and let a quick shot that Berkshire goalie, Jed Baliotti, saved with his right pad but the rebound zipped right to Connor Hagness’s stick who buried the rebound.  Wilson got his second assist of the game when David Novotny tried to get the puck from the corner to Wilson standing at the middle of the blue line.  Berkshire was able to get a stick on the pass but was not able to gather the puck.  Wilson took a shot that was deflected into the air, hit Baliotti in the chest and bounced onto Novotny’s stick who was skating to the front of the net; he buried his opportunity at the 5:10 mark.  

Williston got their third of the period on the power play when Tyler Varin got the puck on the left point and passed to his d-partner Will Tripp. Tripp skated to the middle of the ice and put a shot on Balliotti, who appeared screened in front.  The goal was the final straw for the Berkshire coaching staff who pulled Baliotti.  The game would remain 3-0 for the remainder of the period and for all of the second period.   

Berkshire finally got on the board in the third only to be answered by Shaul Mitton who received a pass from Varin sending him on a breakaway.  Mitton trucked down the right wing, approached Berkshire goalie Sam Woessner, and beat the junior on a backhand, top shelf.  Word on the street is that there was a monkey running out of the building and into the night as Mitton finally got him off his back, netting his first goal of the year.  The Williston faithful hope that this can get the Charlettetown, PEI senior on the right track from here on out.  Berkshire got a second goal with 1:50 left but that was all they could muster as Hagness closed out the game with an empty-netter.  The game puck went to Mitton for the game.  Trevor Corsello had a splendid afternoon in net making timely saves at important moments.  He finished the game with 43 saves.   

Williston has a three-game week coming up.  First, the Wildcats head to New England’s second-largest city and home of Polar Selzer on Wednesday afternoon against the Worcester Hilltoppers at 4 pm.  On Friday night, Williston is at Winchendon.  Then on Friday, Williston plays its first home game in the New Year and first in nine games when Berkshire comes to town for a 4:45 tilt.  Good seats are still available.  See you there! 

Wildcats Put Pieces Together, Defeat Saints, 3-2 

The Williston boy’s hockey team got off the schneid with a big roadwin at Canterbury on Wednesday afternoon, with a 3-2 decision over the Saints. 

Both clubs entered the game with a 1-8-1 record and looking to get on the winning side of things.  Williston started off the game like mad-men in the defensive zone with Zac Gmerek leading the charge; he would end the day with five blocked shots.  Canterbury scored first when a Canterbury defenseman hit a man in front that deflected errantly into goalie, Trevor Corsello, who could not corral the puck.  A Saint forward pounced on the rebound giving the Saints a 1-0 lead into the first break. 

In the second, and with Williston on the power play, Tyler Varin and William Tripp played catch at the blue line before Tripp sent a quick pass to a wide-open Tommy Harty in the slot who one-timed a low shot that beat Canterbury goalie Cal Skwara between the legs.  It was reminiscent of the captain’s two goals against Northwood a month earlier.  Williston and Canterbury traded opportunities but ended the period 1-1. 

In the third, Williston took the lead at the 2:40 mark of the period when David Novotny worked a puck to Tripp from the halfwall.  Trip zipped a quick pass to Varin at the right point who started to drive toward the net and with the patience of St. Stephen waited out a Canterbury defender who slid by looking to block a potential shot; the assistant captain continued toward the net and forced Skwara to drop putting the puck over his shoulder.  However, eight minutes later Canterbury scored on a one-timer from the blue line that beat Corsello.  The Williston bench was down but quickly pulled themselves up by the metaphorical boot straps and plodded along until less than two minutes later when Novotny got the puck to Jake Sacratini in the corner who skated toward the blue line and around the circle on his backhand, rounded the circletop, moved the puck to his forehand and slipped a quick shot under the arm of Skwara.  It was a dandy of a goal and put Williston up, 3-2, with just under five minutes remaining.   

At this point, Williston buckled up the defense and shut down Canterbury for the win.  Shots were 28-27, Canterbury.  Gmerek earned the game puck for his excellent and focused defense and willingness to block shots. 

Williston heads to Sheffield, MA on Saturday to take on the Berkshire Bears at 3:15.  If you’re making the trip, flip flops and Hawaiian shirts are encouraged due to the spring-like temps for the weekend.  Bring an umbrella though, the heavy stuffs gonna’ be coming down too. Till then. 

Holiday Break with the Wildcats 

On December 20th, the Williston boy’s hockey team loaded up the busses and headed to The St. Sebastian’s Holiday Tournament in Needham, MA for a late-night tilt against an already-seasoned Northwood team who came into the night having played close to thirty-five games.  Northwood would get on the board once in the first half of the game and early in the second half, but Williston turned things on to tie and then win it in a shootout, 3-2. 

For much of the first half, Williston stuck to its game plan and was only down 1-0 at the end of the period.  Northwood got on the board a little more than two minutes in the second period when a shot was taken from off a rush from just over the blueline that kissed the left post and careened in past Williston goalie, Trevor Corsello.  However, Williston’s power play was clicking as senior captain, Tommy Harty scored twice to even the game. 

The first came on the power play when Harty took a one-timer from David Novotny who was sitting on the right hash marks.  Harty found an opening on the far post past the Northwood goaltender.  Tyler Varin got the other assist.  The goal was scored at the 7:32 mark of the period.  Harty got his second of the game when he took a pass, again in the slot, and let a lazy lightening of a backhand shot go that looked to beat the Northwood goalie in the middle of the net, tying the game.  Both teams would trade chances but none would fall.  A fiveminute overtime yielded no victor, either. 

On to a shootout. 

Northwood shot first and Corsello thwarted the effort.   

Harty took the first shot for Williston and beat their goalie on deke to a backhand.     

Corsello stopped the next Northwood shooter. 

Novotny was the second shooter for Williston in the best of three shootout and he capitalized sending the Williston bench into jubilation.  They would play the late game the following day over a very strong St. Andrews Saints team from Toronto. 

The following day, Williston dropped a 6-1 decision to the Saints.  Novotny got the lone goal for Williston with assists to Sacratini and Varin.  Williston then faced St. Sebastian’s on Sunday for the thirdplace game and lost 4-1.  Connor Hagness scored with an assist from Sacratini. 

After the New Year, Williston reconvened back in Boston to take on Noble and Greenough School and, once again, St. Sebastian’s.  Williston was the home team against Nobles at St. Sebastian’s and started out the game by finishing the first period even at zero. 

In the second period, Williston got on the board just three minutes into the frame when Hagness drove into the zone and put a backhander on Nobles goalie, Marc Smith, from the bottom of the circle.  The odd-angle shot deflected at just about crossbar-height and Williston assistant captain and baseball extraordinaire, Matt Pimental batted in the rebound.  Then, a little over a minute later, Charles Monteith gathered a puck just inside the blue line and a fortuitous screen by Ryan Deschamps allowed the puck to beat Smith once again.  Things appeared to be going well for the Wildcats who dominated play.  However, bad penalties in the second and third period and four Nobles power play goals erased all hope for a Wildcat win and Nobles took the game 6-2.  Williston was outshot, 44-23, Corsello taking the loss. 

The next day Williston played St. Sebastian’s and took the loss, 5-1.  Connor Hagness got the lone goal when he ripped a shot that went bar-down to tie the game at one midway through the second stanza.  Shaul Mitton got the assist.  Williston hung close but eventually Sebs pulled away. Williston was outshot in this game 46-20, while Emile Savoie took the loss.   

Williston has struggled out of the gate, but with the strength-of schedule that the Wildcats play has only helped to season them as they begin the next two-thirds of their schedule in the New Year.  Williston is on the road again for the next four games with the next game this Wednesday at 3:30 at Canterbury.  Both teams have identical records and are looking for their second win of the season and a chance to go on a run.  See you in New Milford!