BRATTLEBORO — House League and Learn to Skate action got the Brattleboro Hockey Association (BHA) action going last weekend. Playing cross-ice games with the sound system bumping, House League majors (ages 11-14) and minors (ages 6-10) had big time fun playing 3-on-3 games. On Saturday morning, the Learn-to Skate and Novice program saw another great turnout. This week's session was organized by U-14 coaches Elizabeth McClarney and Gordon Little. They had help from their daughter Ryan Little, former BHA standout, who is currently in her first year at Boston College, playing for a BC women's hockey team that is currently undefeated and ranked No. 1 in NCAA Division I and in first place in the Hockey East standings. Using the America Development Model, the session featured on the ice games and contests that helped the players ages 4-7 to learn the game of hockey. Henry Schwartz, Senji Kimura, Damian Bliss, and Malika Anthes enjoyed all six skills stations.
In game action, the BHA Squirts remained undefeated, improving to 10-0 with a 7-3 win over Westfield. Leo Bodett's hat trick, potting three goals, propelled the Hawks' offense. With Will Hill chipping in a pair of goals, and Bryce Boyd-Tucker and Rowen Lonergan collecting one each, the Squirts' offense secured the victory. The Brattleboro coaches were quick to point to Ben Greenwald (2 assists) and Emmet Smith (3 assists) as the fuel for the Hawks' attack. The staff also praised the work of the Squirts' defensive corps of Lonergan, Marna Wilson, Alex Dumont, and Kyle Hamilton. The Squirts will travel to Westfield this weekend for a rematch with the Bombers.
The BHA Pee Wees also fired up the offense last weekend, leading to two big wins. On Saturday, the Hawks visited Ludlow, Mass., and lit the red light early and often in a 7-1 victory. The Hawks returned to Brattleboro on Sunday, hosting the Springfield Caps at the Nelson Withington arena. They were able to pick up right where they left off, scoring eight goals en route to the 8-2 win. The offensive attack was led by the forward line of Will Taggard-Cameron Fry-Jack Pattison scoring a total of nine goals and the trio of Alex Palomba-Brett Parsons-Derek Parsons teaming up for a total of five goals on the weekend. Lock-down defense by the pairs of Ethan Young and Lauren Carpenter, Aden McMahon and Nelly Tattersall, and Jack Rockefeller and Torin Kindopp kept the action light in front of goalie Darek Harvey.
The Bantam Hawks continued their progress in the Greater Springfield League's Bantam division. On Saturday, they defeated the Franklin County Hockey Association (FCHA) Green Wave 5-3 in another hard fought contest between the two teams. Brattleboro jumped out to a 1-0 lead when defenseman Nathan Powers scored the first of his two goals, forcing a turnover in the Brattleboro zone, splitting a pair of FCHA defenders and breaking in on the goaltender alone. FCHA tied the game on a late first-period goal, but the Hawks put two on the board in the second. Tyler Higley broke the tie, putting the finishing touch on crisp passes from Andrew Peloso and Jakob Curtiss. Higley recorded an assist on Power's blast from the point at the nine-minute mark of the second that put the Hawks up 3-1. When FCHA cut into the lead with an early third-period goal, the Hawks answered with two more in the third as Gabe Heiden set up Jakob Curtiss for a pretty top shelf goal and Andrew Peloso scored on a sweet breakaway. FCHA scored another goal late, but the Hawks goaltending tandem of Austin Wood and Forrest Wohnus was able to contain the Green Wave. The two teams conclude their regular season series on Sunday in Greenfield at Collins-Moyland Arena.
On Sunday, the Bantams traveled west to Troy, N.Y. to play an out of league, out of state game with the Albany-Troy at the storied Knickerbocker Arena. For two periods the Hawks held their own against the Jr. Engineers, opening with a one-goal lead as Jakob Curtiss fed Andrew Peloso, who was able to bang it home from down low. Nathan Powers scored the Bantams' second goal of the day, sending a D to D pass from Mason Foard past the Albany-Troy goaltender. The Jr. Engineers extended their lead early in the third and Brattleboro was unable to get closer than 5-3 midway through the period when Gabe Heiden scored moving through the slot after taking a pass out of the left wing corner from Ernie Antonucci. Albany-Troy broke away later in the period, scoring four unanswered goals to secure a 9-3 victory.