freshman Matt McLaughlin moves the puck during Bay's 6-1 win
over Lakewood on Sunday. Bay won all three of its games in the
Rocket Invitational. (Photo by Larry Bennet)
wins Rocket Invitational for fifth straight year
By Zachary Dzurick
Published Dec. 21, 2005
here for an archive of West Life Sports Editor Zachary
Dzurick's "Red Right 88" weekly columns.
the fifth year in a row, Bay won their Rocket Invitational tournament
at Winterhurst. Bay outscored their three opponents 18-6.
Bay opened the tournament with a 5-2 win over Chagrin Falls. On
Saturday, Bay defeated Mayfield 7-3 as sophomore back-up goalie
Matt Heller picked up the victory with 17 saves. And on Sunday,
Bay knocked off Lakewood 6-1 as freshman Sam Ward won his first
ever high school game.
The three wins raised Bay's record to 5-5. After a stretch of tough
games, last Sunday Bay lost a close 1-0 game to Rocky River. The
Rocket Invitational gave the team a chance to see the fruits of
their hard work in practice.
worked hard on our own zone coverage after the North Olmsted game
(9-0 loss)," coach Terry Chadwick said. "That came into play as
we did not give up a lot of shots in the three games. We also worked
hard on moving the puck and moving our feet in the offensive zone
and that created a lot of opportunities to score. The Rocky River
game was the first game we played since the Kenston game at the
Rocky River tournament. It was a turning point and hopefully we
can build on it. We have come a long way the last two weeks but
we have a long way to go to be competitive in our league."
Bay was able to wear down the three teams this weekend thanks to
"We played really well this weekend," Chadwick said. "The basic
advantage we had all weekend was all three teams we played skated
two lines and we skated three. We had a lot of goals at the end
of the period. It was an advantage we have had the last couple of
years in the Blue Division. Skating three lines is a big advantage.
It was good for us. (Back-up goaltenders) Matt Heller and Sam Ward
both got to see some action."
Other freshman making milestones this week were Buddy Martin and
Matt Notarberardino who each notched their first career goals.
Chadwick believes that even though his team has moved up to the
White Division, it is important to still play some Blue division
"The key is to understand where you are as a team," Chadwick said.
"When you play a tough league schedule, you want to play teams you
are competitive with in tournaments and non-league games. Before,
when we were in the Blue, we loved playing Red teams whenever we
could in tournaments and in non-league games. Now we are playing
a tougher division, but we need to still play some Blue teams, one
because we have to give them a chance to play us because that is
only fair, and second because you want to play a wide schedule."
Having a monster of a weekend was senior Dan Wise, who had seven
goals and six assists. He and his fellow seniors also completed
a sweep of all four Rocket Invitationals they played in.
"It was fun," Wise said. "It was a huge confidence booster for our
younger players. Getting Ward his first win was big. Staying unbeaten
in this tournament was the entire motivation all week. We never
lost a game in the Rocket tournament and we finished it that way."
Despite the success this weekend against their former Blue rivals,
Wise believes the move up in divisions will make the younger players
better in the long run.
"They are seeing a lot better talent than they would have ever seen
in the old division," Wise said. "By the time they are seniors they
will be just as good or even better than the seniors we have now."
Ward knows his opportunities will be limited behind starting goaltender
Kevin Figueira and Sam Heller, so he made the most of his chance.
He saved six of the seven shots he faced.
"We played great as a team," Ward said. "It is good because I learn
from the other goalies. I had some butterflies but I was really
excited. My teammates kept the puck out of the zone and they didn't
get many shots."