West Side Terriers bring Lion’s season to an end

Alex Francisco, Sports Editor

Hearts were broken on the ice and also in the stands after West Springfield came back to beat the Ludlow varsity ice-hockey team in the first postseason game this past Wednesday.

Despite having had beat the Terriers in the regular season and having a two-goal advantage by the end of the first period, Ludlow could not keep their lead.

Forty-seconds into the game, senior captain Aaron McNamera wasted no time taking advantage of a rebound and putting the puck in the back of the net.

He would score again in the fifth minute of the game to give the Lions a 2-0 lead. Unfortunately, McNamera could not get himself a hat trick nor could Ludlow prevent West Side from scoring three unanswered goals which would determine the fate of the game.

After opening up their season with a huge blowout over rival Longmeadow, hopes were very high for the Ludlow boys varsity ice hockey team. Their goal was to finish the year in 2nd or 3rd place in the Berry division. However, as the season comes to a close the have found themselves finishing with an 9-11-1 record.

“That was a big win over Longmeadow, so I thought after that we could have competed for the 2nd spot being Westfield, but as the season went on we simply were running out of energy towards the end of games and now we are where we are,” said senior captain Nick Forzano.

A huge challenge they’ve faced this year is numbers. With many injuries and some players no longer being academically eligible to play.

“We didn’t have a lot of guys to start with,” Forzano explained. “Teams would have almost 20 skaters dress when we were dressing no more than 15.”

To add to their challenges, this squad found themselves lacking in defensemen after key players graduated last year. The boys also found them having to readjust to a new system and style of play to take advantage of their strong offensive line.

“At first it was hard adjusting but overall it’s been good and bad in certain situations,” said Forzano.

Next year the Lions will suffer another loss, graduating seniors such as captains Forzano and Aaron McNamara.

“After the seniors are gone I believe we will still be a threat,” said Diotalevi. “We have great young talent with 3 great freshmen, good goaltending, and a good group of returning players.”

Although their season ended much sooner than they would have expected or hoped, the team is proud of what they were able to accomplish this year.

“Overall we’ve worked really hard. We’ve gotten through a lot of obstacles and whatever happens in the end, we’ve had a good run,” said Forzano.