Boys Hockey Brings Home Three Straight Wins

This past week the Andover Boys Hockey continued to cruise towards the playoffs, racking up three big home victories against Belmont Hill, 4-2, BB & N, 3-1, and Kimball Union Academy, 7-0. Andover forwards continued to produce lots of offense and the Andover defense greatly limited their opponents scoring opportunities. Standouts over the past week included JP Martignetti ’06, who broke out of a bit of an offensive slump in a big way, and Andover net-minder Matt Ward ’06, who ever since letting in six goals against a tough Thayer squad has played masterfully in between the pipes, saving almost everything that comes at him. The Boys in Blue boast an impressive 15-4 record, and continue to pick up momentum as they surge towards the playoffs. In the first contest of the week, Andover took on a highly ranked Belmont Hill squad in the at home. Both teams came out hard and within the first couple of minutes the score was tied at one, with Andover’s goal coming off a deflection of a Jake Edwards ’05 slap shot. The boys seized control of the game, shutting down Belmont Hill with rock solid defense and a barrage of shots. Chris Cahill ’06 scored on a shot from the blue-line and Captain Stephen Rolecek ’05 dangled a defender and put a wrister five-hole to give Andover the 3-1 lead. Despite being plagued by penalties in the second period, the Andover squad, through great penalty killing and masterful goaltending, managed to contain the Belmont offensive surge. With a minute and fifty-eight seconds left in the period, Rolecek found Kyle Kucharski ’05 who scored on a one-timer from the blue-line to increase Andover’s lead to three. Belmont scored on a screen from the blue-line in the dwindling minutes of the third period, but this brief offensive swell proved not enough to topple the Big Blue, and Andover walked away with the 4-2 victory. The following afternoon Andover took on Buckingham, Brown, and Nichols School at home, in front of a packed house of fans. A mere two minutes into the game, Kevin Maresco ’05 scored of a Martignetti rebound and gave Andover the early lead. Later in the period, BB & N responded with a goal that grazed Ward’s right shoulder. Tied at the end of one, Andover dominated the second period, putting a myriad of shots on goal. Finally, Martignetti found success, taking the puck coast to coast, dangling a few defenders, and scoring to give Andover the lead once more.The Big Blue held a 2-1 lead until the closing seconds of the game when Tom Dignard ’06 found Joe Smith ’07 to give the Andover squad their second win in as many days. In the final contest of the week, the Andover trounced Kimball Union Academy, scoring at least six goals for the eighth time this season. Andover’s high-powered offense got to work early, getting five goals in the first period from Kucharski, Martignetti, Maresco, and two from Smith. In the second period, Andover continued to dominate, racking up another two goals from Martignetti and Hoerner. Andover spared KUA in the third period, giving their first and second lines significant time off.