Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Tournament Update by Jaime Gweshe

Boys Varsity Basketball and Hockey

Saturday was a busy night for Burlington High athletics; both the Varsity boys hockey team and basketball team had Tournament games. For the boys of the hockey team, their season ended, however for the Burlington basketball season, their season is just starting to heat up.

On the basketball court, the Burlington Red Devils pushed past Boston Latin on Saturday night with a commanding 64-54 victory as well as secured themselves a spot in the Division 2 North Semifinals.

In the first quarter, junior Greg Sheridan scored eight points and fellow guard Ryan Putney had four points, by the end of the quarter Burlington posted a 17-10 lead over Boston Latin. Burlington was able to keep control of the pace of the game and showed great defensive coverage to be up 38-33 by the halftime.

The second half saw fairly low scoring by both Boston Latin as well as Burlington. In the third quarter Putney led the team in points with 7. In the third quarter it was once again Sheridan who led offensively alongside Putney. Both Putney and Sheridan each had 21 points on the night. With Mark Melanson, Shane Farley and Christian Morneweck, as well as the rest of the Devils team playing well, Burlington was able to keep Boston Latin at bay and come out with the win. Burlington will face Brighton on Thursday night.

On the rink Burlington suffered a 5-2 loss against St. Mary’s, ending their season. Things were looking good for the Devils heading into the second period. They had physically dominated the first period and held a 1-0 lead over their rivals. A little over five minuets into the second also gave Burlington what would be it’s largest lead of the night when Joe Berardi found the back of the net to put Burlington up 2-0.

However, Burlington’s intensity came crashing down after a power-pay goal by St. Mary’s. The Spartans quickly scored two more goals within ten seconds of each other to take the lead and the momentum away from the Devils. Goals by Derek Stella and Tim Aylward in the third period put the game out of reach for Burlington, and the Spartans closed the book on Burlington’s season.

In the opening period the Devil’s were fighting to win, with an unmatched level of intensity, emotion and determination. Burlington lit the lamp first with a goal by Junior Dan McMahon. McMahon got the wrap-around goal at 3:03, backhanding the puck into the net to give Burlington a 1-0 lead.

Going into the second period Burlington got deep into the attacking zone early and keep the momentum and intensity swinging in its favor. Brian Hood was able to score through heavy traffic in front of the net to tack on a second goal.

Tables rapidly turned for the Devils when Nikko Markham scored a power-play goal six minuets into the second period. Julian Yourawski followed this goal up with another one a minuet and a half later. Ten seconds after Yourawski’s goal, Brendan Mageary put the puck in the back of the net to give the Spartans the final 3-2 lead over the Devils.

“It’s been the story of our season,” said coach Bob Conceison, “Giving up quick back-to-back goals has been an issue with this team throughout the whole season.”

In the third period, the Spartans continued to pressure Burlington’s defense; Derek Stella scored at 4:18 and then it was Tim Aylward who put the game out of hand for Burlington with his goal at 13:12 giving St. Mary’s its last goal in a decisive 5-3 victory.

It was the last game in a Burlington uniform for captains Joey Centrella, Shane Matthews, and Chris Irwin, as well as for seniors Kyle Crowley, Mike Grinnell, Chris Rolli, Chris Theriault, P.J. Vigneau, and Justin Bonia.

In all Burlington will lose nine players, including top goal scorers Chris Irwin who had 24 points and senior Kyle Crowley who had 12 goals on the season, but Burlington’s future looks bright, as they will bring back all but two of their defensemen as well as top goal scorers and playmakers Brett Rompkey, Brian Hood, Joe Berardi, RJ Caruso, and Adam Crowley. They will also bring back two solid goaltenders in Nick DeSimone and Derek DeCastro.

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