Casey Pedro, Central Catholic — “Tough as Nails Award” for daughter of Olympic legend who provided a gritty presence, and was rewarded with her first varsity goal.
Taylor Lirakis, Methuen/Tewksbury — “No Rest For the Wicked....Good Award” for playing every minute in every game in goal for the Red Raiders, fishing with a 2.10 GAA.
It was a perfect ending to Tyler Sifferlen’s high school career, as he led Malden Catholic to its fourth straight Super 8 title.
The UMass Lowell-bound winger — who remember played for North Andover High as an eighth grader — scored a team-high 25 goals and totalled 51 points this season to finish his brilliant high school career.
But Sifferlen wasn’t the only local on the champions. North Andover’s John McLean III, the son of the Lancers’ head coach of the same name, finished the season with 29 points and longtime North Andover youth hockey player Ara Nazarian had 22 goals and a team-best 57 points.
Meanwhile the team MC beat in the final was, of course, Austin Prep. The Cougars sported seven players from local towns, including All-Scholastic goalie Elijah Harris of Haverhill (2.05 goals-against average) and the team’s two top scorers in Bobo Carpenter of North Reading (23 goals) and Ryan McDonough of Andover (12 goals).
Be true to your school
It’s a common plea, but hockey players — please don’t rush to leave your high school hockey team for what seems like greener pastures. Need proof?
Ask Whittier Tech senior Connor Stevens. After a year in juniors he returned to the Amesbury/Whittier co-op team and scored a team-high 13 goals.
Or how about Pinkerton’s Bailey Walsh, who returned from prep school and led the Astros to the Division 1 state semifinals with a team-best 16 goals.
And while it doesn’t really follow this argument, on the topic of changing teams, Kyle Nagri returned to Salem High this season and tied for the Blue Devils’s lead with 14 goals.
So, in summary, enjoy high school hockey for as long as you can.