Monday, December 9, 2013
The boys high school hockey playoffs resume Tuesday with regional quarterfinals.
Here’s a few notes and observations on some the matchups ...
No. 4 Cony (14-4-0) will play No. 5 Maranacook/Hall-Dale/Winthrop (9-9-0) at Kents Hill at 4 p.m. Tuesday.
MHW swept the regular season series, winning 4-2 and 4-3.
“We’re as prepared as we’ll ever be for a playoff game,” Cony coach Chad Foye said. “We know them pretty well.”
The Hawks also know the Rams.
Both teams like to play physical, which sets up what should be an entertaining game.
MHW features the leading scorer in Eastern A — Dan Condon (35 points).
Condon is a tough and rugged player who is dangerous anywhere in the offensive zone.
MHW coach Andy Dube said he plans to play everybody equally, but expect some double shifting if the Hawks find themselves down or even tied as the game progresses.
• On paper, Cony holds a distinct advantage in goal. Senior Matt Swan ranked among the league leaders in goals against average.
However, don’t discount the capability of MHW goalie Tyler Plante, who’s struggled at times this season.
Plante earned the starting job after filling the backup role last season.
However, he was pressed into action late in the season after starter Jon Dale got injured.
Plante played a remarkable game in a 3-2 loss to Waterville in an Eastern A quarterfinal game. He stopped 36 shots, including several from point-blank range.
“He’s shown the ability to step it up in big games, and I expect he can do it again,” Dube said.
• No. 2 Messalonskee (15-3-0) will host No. 7 John Bapst (8-10-0) in an Eastern B quarterfinal Tuesday at 6 p.m.
The Eagles may be without injured forward Chase Cunningham on Tuesday.
“We hope he can play but we don’t know,” Messalonskee coach Mike Latendresse said.
Messalonskee desperately wants another shot at two-time defending regional champ and top-seeded Brewer (17-1-0). The teams are on a collision course to meet in the regional final March 6 in Orono.
Brewer defeated Messalonskee three times this season, although one victory came in the Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference championship game that is essentially no more than a glorified scrimmage.
Should the seeds hold through the quarterfinals, Messalonskee would meet No. 3 Presque Isle (11-7-0) in the semifinals.
The Wildcats are traditionally a tough out in the playoffs.Tweet
Gary Hawkins has worked at the Kennebec Journal since 1980. His primary beats are baseball, boys basketball, girls and boys soccer and golf.