After a flight from Hartford to Chicago and then to Edmonton, Tristan finally made it home late Monday night. It is great to have him home for the sole reason I can finally have a conversation with him. The long distance communication is usually limited to one syllable grunts. I need to thank the Cross family for taking him in for a couple of nights and getting him to the airport. Again we are grateful for the help of the Westminster community.
The hockey season is now over and lacrosse is around the corner. Tristan’s team may have won the Earl/Martin tournament, but according to Tristan they were far from satisfied. They knew they had a team that could win the entire Elite 8, but did not get it done earlier in the season. Every game matters. They still did awesome. I have some pictures of the team below (thanks to the Taber family) as well as an article and the trophy presentation picture from the website of the New England Hockey Journal.
Westminster won the Martin/Earl large school tournament much the way they performed in the regular season: through a team-oriented, all-for-one approach that saw them sacrifice individual stardom in order to knock off Brunswick School, Belmont Hill and Governor’s Academy in the final contest.
“I thought our guys played hard certainly today and yesterday against Belmont Hill and against Brunswick in the first round,” Westminster head coach Tim Joncas (Branford, Conn.) told hockeyjournal.com after his team’s 4-2 victory. “They were obviously gearing up for the top-eight tournament and I thought we had a real good season to get in there.
“I thought they were fired up to be in this tournament, the large school tournament, which is named for Tom Earl, former coach at Westminster School, so I think they were fired up to compete for him and bring this trophy home.”
Westminster got real solid goaltending from junior Patrick Spano in the wins over Belmont Hill and Governor’s, and balanced scoring from across the lineup to capture the championship against some quality competition.
“I’m just really proud of all four lines,” Joncas, in his fourth year behind his alma mater’s bench, said. “They played hard today. I thought we executed the gameplan as well as we possibly could in terms of getting pucks and bodies to the net and keeping pucks deep and trying to outwork them down low.
“Hat’s off to Governor’s- they’ve got a good squad there and I’m sure they’ll be back in this situation next year as well. It was just an all-around great weekend.”
Forward David Hallisey (Wethersfield, Conn.) scored a pair of goals and added an assist in Westminster’s 3-1 semi-final win over Belmont Hill, which featured 28-goal scorer Jimmy Vesey (North Reading, Mass.), but could not get anything going against Spano after taking an early lead.
Others like Luke Laszkiewicz, Tim Acker, Jim Crow and Andy Michailidis (Stamford, Conn.) generated the offense needed in the final game to secure the Martin/Earl title.
“It’s obviously the best way we could go out,” senior forward Tom McKeown (Longmeadow, Mass.) said afterward. “The opportunity we were given with the large school tournament, we just wanted to make the most of it and win three games in a row. That’s what we did and we couldn’t ask for more.”
McKeown and his teammates embodied the kind of perfect chemistry that saw Westminster pull together at the right time and play the kind of winning hockey it takes to go the distance.
“It’s hard to pick one or two guys,” Joncas said when asked to identify some of the key players behind the championship. “We don’t have that kind of one or two guy (dynamic); it’s a complete team effort. I think that’s allowed us to have the kind of success we’ve had. And to be 21-6-2 in New England at the season, that’s a pretty big accomplishment coming out of the Founder’s League.”
While Joncas acknowledged it was a bittersweet moment because his squad is losing a good number of seniors to graduation this spring, he was encouraged at the return next season Spano, Hallisey, Crow, Emilio Audi and all the other underclassmen who were a key part of the championship run.
(From the New England Hockey Journal)