Boys Hockey Is on a Roll

Charlie Bonney, Sports Editor

Last hockey season ended in disappointment as the CRLS boys hockey team failed to make the playoffs. They finished with a record of 6-10-4 last year, but this year the team started with a clean slate and a mission to fight deep into the playoffs and prove the team’s worth. The team started off the season with a record of seven wins, three ties, and zero losses through the beginning of January. Playing like that, the team seemed almost unstoppable. Coach Mark Marfione said, “The team has worked hard and developed some good habits.” However, he is also concerned that there is a long season ahead.

Cambridge’s star players have led the team to its impressive start. The team’s captain, Thomas McGaffigan ’20, recently scored the hundredth point of his high school career and has also broken the record for most points in the history of CRLS hockey, a monumental achievement. Coach Marfione praised McGaffigan, saying, “Thomas is very talented and he works harder than anyone on the ice.” Following his accomplishment, McGaffigan told the Register Forum, “I’m not going to lie, it feels great,” adding, “Not only have I worked extremely hard during my four years at CRLS, I have been playing hockey since I was three, and it’s nice to see that my hard work paid off.” Over December break, wins against Somerville and Methuen gave the team their first piece of silverware of the season, triumphing in the Second Annual First Responders Holiday Tournament. In mid-January, with a win against Saugus, the team also took one step closer to their ultimate goal of a state championship by clinching a spot in the playoffs only thirteen games into the season. 

Cambridge suffered their first loss of the season in early January, falling 5-2 to Bedford at Simoni Rink. After beating Cambridge, Bedford was able to take first place in the Merrimack Valley/Dual County League, with CRLS close behind in second place. The team sees this loss as only a minor blip in their season, leaving a chip on their shoulder to use as motivation for the playoffs. CRLS has a rematch against Bedford in late January, which they see as a chance to prove they are worthy of a championship run.

The hockey team attributes much of its success to the support they get at their games. Luc Denney ’21 said, “The more fans the better—we live off their energy. The more energetic and the more involved they are, the better we play.” Students, parents, and other supporters at the games help create this positive atmosphere that often spurs the team on to victory. CRLS students are happy to do their part in supporting their peers and fueling them to victory. Ian Rauh, a junior, said, “I remember the first game I went to, it was a crazy atmosphere, a lot of people showed up. We were chanting, we were cheering for our team.”

The team has several home games remaining, and they hope for the continued support of students. The matchups against several league opponents will be crucial to decide their standing in the league, as well as to ensure their momentum as they enter the playoffs. For Denney and the rest of the team, there is only one goal: to “win the state championship.”

This piece also appears in our January 2020 print edition.