ROCKLAND – There might be a few things that are unique to this high school hockey season, but as we all try and adjust to the “new normal” there is one thing that has remained constant – the Patriot League and its competition.
Thanks to Nate Delprete, it looks like Hanover is ready to assert itself once again as a team to watch. The senior captain opened his season in style, as he notched a hat trick and registered an assist for the newly-dubbed Hawks during a 5-2 victory over longtime rival, Duxbury.
“He’s a gamer,” Hanover coach Jonny Abban said. “He shows up, he’s not the biggest kid, he’s not the strongest, but his legs are always going. He can find the net, and he makes everyone around him a better hockey player.”
As soon as the puck dropped, Duxbury (0-1) turned up the pressure, recording three shots on net in the first 25 seconds. However, sophomore goaltender Liam Monahan denied each of them for Hanover.
Then, led by Delprete, the Hawks started a rush toward the opposite end. The senior sniper lined up a shot, then fired a rocket past the reach of Duxbury senior, Mike Cicerone. In a shocking twist of momentum at the time, Hanover had taken a 1-0 lead just 34 seconds into play.
After Duxbury (0-1) tied things at 1-all off a goal by sophomore up-and-comer Aiden Harrington with 7:38 left in the first period, the Dragons were whistled for tripping in the waning seconds of the stanza.
The minor error proved vital, as Delprete ripped a bullet in the direction of the Dragons’ net. Junior Max DaSilva was in front for the tip and connected. The shot ricocheted into the twine, as Hanover took a 2-1 advantage at the horn.
With a little under six minutes remaining in the second period, the Hawks poached control of the game, as Robert Hanna connected on a shot to make it a 3-1 contest. Nineteen seconds later, Delprete buried his second goal to break things open at 4-1.
Duxbury pulled Cicerone with 1:20 left in regulation, hoping to pull off a last-minute comeback. Delprete, on the other hand, saw a chance to complete the hat trick. He made sure he didn’t miss his opportunity when it came, corralling the puck at the Dragons’ blue line before sliding it into the vacant net for the clincher with 14.2 seconds to go.
Senior forward Manning Morris also provided a spark with a pair of assists.
Harrington would register both goals for Duxbury in the effort, while senior captains Will Nolan and Billy Mrowka tagged on assists.
High School Sports, Sports