Bombers ice Grafton on ‘Senior Night’

Westfield’s Jason Rokosz makes the play on one knee Friday night against Grafton at Amelia Park Arena. (BILL DEREN PHOTO)

WESTFIELD – “Senior Night” is typically a joyous moment for most upperclassmen no matter how good or bad a team’s fortunes have been throughout the season.
For the Westfield High School boys ice hockey team, “Senior Night” took on even greater meaning as the Bombers posted a much-needed 4-0 shutout of visiting Grafton Friday night at Amelia Park Arena.
They currently are in their biggest fight in recent memory to forge a playoff spot.
“It was a completely different team,” Westfield High boys ice hockey coach C.B. “Moose” Matthews said. “It was our best game of the year. We did everything right – stayed out of the penalty box, moved the puck, and were very good defensively. We played good Bomber hockey.”
Both teams battled to a scoreless tie through the game’s first 15 minutes.
Westfield broke out in the second period with goals from junior forward Peter Chrisanthopoulos and senior forward Matt Bacon. In the third period, junior forward Joe Taupier and senior forward Nick Mee each scored once to pull away from Grafton.
Westfield goalie C.J. Czarnecki (22 saves) earned a shutout.
“If we play like this, we will be in the playoffs,” said coach Matthews, whose team faces key upcoming road tests on Feb. 8 (at Minnechaug) and on Feb. 13 (at East Longmeadow).
Game Notes: Bacon, Mee, and fellow seniors Danny Buckelew (defenseman) and Gavin Carzello (forward/defense) were honored on “Senior Night”.

Tigers turn back Gators; keep tourney hopes alive
Westfield Technical Academy 79, Gateway 41

Westfield Technical Academy kept its tournament hopes alive with a convincing home victory.
David Tikhonchuk continued his strong play following a return from injury, posting a game-high 28 points for Westfield Tech. Tigers’ senior Mateo Sanchez delivered a career-high 14 points. Sanchez made two early 3-pointers. Josh Sturmer contributed 12 points and another solid defensive effort.
Westfield Tech’s Riley Sullivan closed the door with four straight three’s to begin the fourth quarter.
“That contribution off the bench was spectacular,” Westfield Technical Academy boys basketball head coach Kyle Dulude said of Sullivan.
Westfield Tech faces another must-win game Monday night against Pioneer Valley Christian Academy. Tip-off is at 7.
Said coach Dulude: “It would be great if we could keep this rolling. It is always good to have games at the end of the season that have meaning and possible tournament qualification.”

Lamirande, Saints prevail
St. Mary’s 46, Pioneer Valley Christian Academy 29

Jack Lamirande helped lead St. Mary’s to victory, scoring a team-high 16 points. Nick Montenero (9 points), Mark Nelson (6), Colin Reed (6), and Brady Collins (5) also chipped in for the Saints.

Thurs., Feb. 6
Smith tops Westfield Tech

Smith Vocational 38, Westfield Technical Academy 15
Smith Voke doubled up the Westfield Tech Tigers on Thursday. Westfield Tech will look to bounce back Tuesday against St. Mary’s at Westfield Intermediate School on Southampton Road. Tip-off is at 5:30 p.m.

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