The Beast League Fall season comes to a close this weekend with the playoff rounds at the U14 and U13 levels. All games will be held at the Lovell Arena in Rockland (MA) from Friday, November 10 - Sunday, November 12.
At both levels, each team will play three round-robin games, one on Friday and two on Saturday.
Here is a look at each level:
The 14U Beast League playoffs will feature 10 teams vying for the title this fall. The top three teams will advance to the semifinals on Sunday in the National Division which includes Seacoast Performance Academy, Yale Jr. Bulldogs, Boston Advantage, East Coast Militia, Long Island Gulls and North Shore Wings.
The winner of the American Division (Neponset River Rats, Red Bank Generals, Springfield Thunderbirds and Connecticut Chiefs) will move to Sunday's semi-finals.
A team to watch will be the EC Militia coached by Nick Messina and he is a big component that success starts with the goaltenders and he will turn to them to come up big this weekend.
“It’s playoffs so it starts with the goaltenders,” said Messina. “Ryan Walsh and JuJu Herrera are the backbone of the team, it's all going to start with them. If they can shut down some of these high powered offenses, I like our chances against anyone.
"Ayden Giardina and Thomas Mattera bring a level of compete that sets the tone for the team offensively but I believe all of our lines are ready for the challenge and know what it takes to win as a team.”
Messina hopes his team shows up and battles every single shift in order to win the U14 title.
“We need to play strong defense, and execute on special teams,” said Messina. “I know our boys will bring everything they have and leave it all on the ice. The rankings and the records, none of that matters in the playoffs. You have to show up, bring a ton of heart and be ready to battle every shift until the final whistle.”
Another team to keep your eye on in the U14 division are the Neponset River Rats coached by Greg Chamberlain, who is looking for everyone on his team to play a part this weekend.
“We are going to need secondary scoring and good goaltending,” said Chamberlain. We have a decent amount of good players. Don’t want to point out anyone in particular as we are going to need everyone. Everyone is going to be a key player. We will need a complete effort, plain and simple.”
Sam Graceffa and Kyle Mann have been solid in goal all fall for the River Rats. Leo Zhu, Joe Galvin, Jackson Burns and Connor Hines have had big seasons offensively.
The 14U Yale Jr. Bulldogs should be fun to watch and have forwards Zachary Zusman, Ryan Holes and Peter Royer leading the way. On the blue line look for Logan Melillo and Rocco Ciaburro. Seacoast Performance Academy will also be a strong group with forwards Luca Desjardins, Declan Wotton and Matys St. Gelais up front. Kamden Jackson has been solid in goal.
The Long Island Gulls are also a team to keep your eye on this weekend with players like Matthew Koch, Richard Janniello and Dominic Slevin powering the offense. Look for Maddox Franks in net to be strong as well. Along with them the North Shore Wings will also be in the mix. They will have Ryan Mogielnicki and Luke Salah up front and Warren Dubois and James Lyman in net.
Gio Gemellaro and Michael Gemellaro could key the chances of the Red Bank Generals. The Springfield Thunderbirds will look for production from Troy Hamelin and Quinn Woytowicz.
The Boston Advantage will be in the mix with Isaac Davis up front and a defense paced by Cole Ryan and Landon Nickulas.
Here is the U14 Schedule. All Games at Lovell Arena:
Friday November 10
Seacoast Performance Academy vs. NS Wings (4:30 pm)
River Rats vs. CT Chiefs (7:10 pm)
Boston Advantage vs. EC Militia (7:00 pm)
Yale Jr. Bulldogs vs. Long Island Gulls (8:00 pm)
Red Bank Generals vs. Springfield Thunderbirds (8:30 pm)
Saturday November 11
Yale Jr. Bulldogs vs. EC Militia (9:50 am)
Seacoast Performance Academy vs. Long Island Gulls (11:20 am)
Boston Advantage vs. NS Wings (12:50 pm)
River Rats vs. Springfield Thunderbirds (1:40 pm)
CT Chiefs vs. Red Bank Generals (2:20 pm)
Seacoast Performance Academy vs. EC Militia (5:20 pm)
Boston Advantage vs. Long Island Gulls (6:50 pm)
Yale Jr. Bulldogs vs. NS Wings (6:50 pm)
River Rats vs. Red Bank Generals (7:30 pm)
Springfield Thunderbirds vs. CT Chiefs (8:20 pm)
Sunday November 12
Semi-Final #1 (7:50 am)
Semi-Final #2 (8:00 am)
U14 Championship (1:30 pm)
The 13U Beast League playoffs will have six organizations battling for the championship. The six teams will each play three games and the two highest seeds in the round robin will play for the Championship on Sunday November 12 at 9:20 am at Lovell Arena.
One team to keep your eye on in the playoffs is the Long Island Gulls. Coach Jeff Conroy is ready to watch his team compete.
“Our team trains hard,” said Conroy. “As coaches, we are always looking for that training to translate into big games. We have seen some bright spots recently but we will need consistency throughout the lineup this weekend to win the title. Expectations are high, and we won't be happy with anything less.”
Some key players to watch will be Andrew Randazzo, Jake Conroy, James Fox, Ian Hearle, Traian Regos, Christian LoPiano and Hugh Rooney in goal.
Another team that has their eye on the prize is the EC Militia coached by Anthony Chighisola. Though he says they have struggled a bit with consistency this season, he knows what they are capable of.
“When we play to our capabilities we are a very good team, however we tend to be our own worst enemies,” said Chighisola. “The U13 Militia team is led by our top two lines of forwards as they all play a 200-foot game. Our defense has been improving all year long and both Nico Testa and Ryan McArdle in net have given us a chance to win each game this season.”
John Brown, Reese Ewell, Luke Giovanello, Ronan Foley and Tom McGuiggin could be factors up front for the Militia.
In order to win the U13 title, Chighisola needs his team to keep it simple and play their brand of hockey that they have worked on all season long.
“In order for us to win the U13 title we must first not lose it,” said Chighisola. “We need to play our brand of hockey, move the puck, keep it simple, find the open player and get shots on net with players going to the dirty areas. In our own zone everyone must remain confident without the puck and buy into doing your own job and nothing else. It should be an amazing weekend and hopefully we can string some games together and come out on top.”
The Yale Jr. Bulldogs will have forwards Owen Hannah and Andrew Allred leading the way. The Bulldogs will play their three games against Seacoast Performance Academy, Long Island Gulls and EC Militia.
Here is the U13 schedule for the weekend at Lovell Arena:
Friday November 10
Seacoast Performance Academy vs. Yale Jr. Bulldogs (4:00 pm)
EC Militia vs. NH Mountain Kings (4:30 pm)
Long Island Gulls vs. CT Jr. Rangers (5:30 pm)
Saturday November 11:
Yale Jr. Bulldogs vs. EC Militia (8:20 am)
Long Island Gulls vs. NH Mountain Kings (9:20 am)
Seacoast Performance Academy vs. CT Jr. Rangers (10:50 am)
Long Island Gulls vs. Yale Jr. Bulldogs (3:10 PM)
EC Militia vs. CT Jr Rangers (3:50 pm)
Seacoast Performance Academy vs. NH Mountain Kings (5:20 pm)
Sunday November 12:
U13 FINAL: (9:20 am)