The Foxboro High hockey team is the hottest team in the Hockomock League.
The Warriors are playing their best hockey of the season too, extending their unbeaten streak to six games (4-0-2) with a 6-1 conquest of North Smithfield, R.I. High in their latest outing.
The Warriors scored pairs of goals during each period against the Northmen, limiting North Smithfield to merely seven shots on goalie Espen Reager over the first two periods of play,
Senior Ron MacLellan netted two goals, while Ben Ricketts, Brady Daly and Kirk Leach each had a goal and an assist as the Warriors have now allowed just two goals through their past nine periods of play.
“It’s a good feeling, a lot better than getting an ‘L’,” Foxboro coach Mark Cedorchuk said of the Warriors’ confidence and mindset. “The winning becomes contagious.”
Foxboro plays the fourth of five straight games at Foxboro Sports Center Saturday with a 7:30 p.m. contest against Mansfield.
“They feel like they can get pucks to the net and score,” Cedorchuk said of his Warriors, who created a 14-3 edge in shots in the first period and a 13-4 margin during the second period, skating into the third period with a 4-0 advantage.
“Overall, we played well, we moved the puck up the ice, I liked the way that our guys were skating,” Cedorchuk added. “Our first line (MacLellan, Leach, Jack Watts) was buzzing the puck down low. We were cycling the puck really well.”
The Warriors were whistled for only one late third period penalty and Reager was denied the shutout when North Smithfield scored on a rebound at 8:48 of the third period.
The Warriors attention to defense has played a major role in the recent series of successes. Against North Smithfield, MacLellan broke up a one-timer of a shot in the slot in the 12th minute and seconds later Kyle McGinnis detoured a Northmen rush.
In the second period, Alex Coviello broke up a partial breakaway in the 10th minute to preserve the two-goal lead. And in the third period, Josh Bertumen cleared away a loose puck in the slot in the third minute and Coviello followed by denying a 2-on-1 breakaway in the sixth minute.
“They (North Smithfield) came out pretty fast, they had some good chances at the start of the first period,” Cedorchuk said. “We weren’t sure how it would go, they came out quickly. We made some adjustments and saw how they were forechecking us.”
Foxboro tallied twice within a 31-second span midway through the first period to gain the lead. Daly won the draw off of a faceoff to the left of the Northmen goalie and sent the puck to Ricketts, a senior, who turned the red light on at 8:54. On their next rush, the Warriors tallied again as Daly, a junior, whistled in a wrist shot in the slot, with Ricketts assisting, at 9:25.
The Warriors tallied twice within a three-minute span again late in the second period. MacLellan scored his first goal of the game at 11:40, flipping a nifty backhand shot past the Northmen goalie with Jack Watts assisting. With merely two seconds left in the period, Eoin Reager scored on a shot off of the right side at 14:58 with Ryan Jacobs assisting for Foxboro’s fourth goal.
For a third time, the Warriors tallied twice within a short span in the third period. Leach made it 5-0 Foxboro just 29 seconds into the third period by scoring on a breakaway. Then at 3:27, MacLellan scored his second goal on a rebound of a Leach shot.
“We capitalized on odd-man rushes and got pucks to the net,” Cedorchuck said. “We capitalized on the chances that we had, our guys were getting shots on the net and they were going in.”