By ALEX SPONSELLER The Warwick boys hockey co-op fell to North Smithfield 4-3 in a shootout in the Division II Semifinals to end their first season as a group. Warwick won each of its first two playoff games, topping Lincoln 3-1 and Rogers 2-0. Gerard
By ALEX SPONSELLER The Warwick boys hockey co-op fell to North Smithfield 4-3 in a shootout in the Division II Semifinals to end their first season as a group.
Warwick won each of its first two playoff games, topping Lincoln 3-1 and Rogers 2-0.
Gerard Schifino, Max Savaria and Ryan Barlow scored goals for Warwick in the preliminary win over Lincoln. Sean Noel scored in the first period against Rogers to give Warwick the early lead and Cooper Grossguth would add another goal on his first career score.
The season came to a close the following match when the Skippers outdueled Warwick in the shootout. Jacob Pickering scored in both regulation and the shootout for Warwick.
“The kids gave everything they had. No excuses, but the kids were tired, we were lacking that little extra jump in our step. We played 11 games in 24 nights. It was a grind. But we were proud of the kids and the program, it was a success. The kids really unified together and enjoyed it, and in our eyes, it was a great move for the city and we’re excited for it,” said Warwick coach Mike Boyajian.
The Division II tournament had a different format this season due to the effects of the pandemic, switching to a single-elimination system instead of the typical best of three series. Boyajian felt that his club missed the old format and looks forward to getting back to normal moving forward.
“I feel that best of three was missed, it was hectic. I was just happy to let the kids play hockey, but I am looking forward to next year getting back to that format. Single elimination is tough. It’s unfortunate that we are on the short end of the stick, but they were great games to watch and that’s what playoff hockey is all about,” said Boyajian.
Although the team’s season was cut short, it was proud to reach the semifinals in its first year as a co-op. Warwick is looking to keep the momentum going and having a full schedule next season, including a full preseason, which will help the roster smooth itself out further.
“It’s crucial. The preseason, getting the workouts in, getting the kids working together. We felt that as a program, we were just starting to figure out the lines that we wanted and the war chest that we wanted to use. Having a longer preseason will definitely be beneficial,” said Boyajian, who will miss the kids that made this first season a great one. “We had a great time with this. These were some of the nicest kids I have had and they worked really hard. At practice, during games, or even just staying healthy at home, it was a great season and we are really proud of the kids.”