The '97 Selects have climbed to fourth in the State Select league by beating the District 5 Mariners, 3-1.
The victory extended VJW’s win streak to three games (they had beaten the Braves, 3-2, and the Wings, 2-1) and brought the record to 6-3 at the midway point of the season.
"The kids are starting to understand and execute the little things that ultimately win close hockey games and are really growing as a team," Warrior assistant coach Ben Budds said after the game.
The team’s success starts from the goal on out. Nolan Smith and Kyle Thing have provided the solid goaltending all year long and the defense has been a bright spot -- led by defensive pairs of Leah Olsen and Robbie Budds, Jack Pare and Nick Day and Kevin Rogers and Brendan Flynn.
The ‘97 forwards have also been flying around the rink in all three zones.
The forwards have come along in the system and provided the offense punch needed; with Evan MacHenry centering Tyson Gudaitis and Eric Robbins; Shawn Macburnie between Andrew Grinnell and Kyle Gooselin; and Zach Coffey centering Cam Belanger and Brendan Crowther
"It was the first time the 97 Selects have triumphed over the Mariners in the three years and it was the best game the team has played since we’ve been coaching the team," stated assistant coach Jeff Gudaitis.
“Hopefully, this will be a springboard for us as we have two tough opponents upcoming in the junior Bruins and the Braves again on their home ice -- but it puts us in a good position to attain one of our seasons goals of reaching the State Play-offs,” said head coach Mike Grinnell.
“In pursuing our goal to reach the states, it is great to see the players realize that hard work and a positive attitude are hard to beat.”