Your School. Your Paper. Since 1936.

The Suffolk Journal

Your School. Your Paper. Since 1936.

The Suffolk Journal

Your School. Your Paper. Since 1936.

The Suffolk Journal

Men’s hockey stumbles into the playoffs

Hard work does indeed pay off and that’s what the Suffolk men’s hockey team is experiencing right now.

With only two games remaining on their schedule and their playoff hopes on the line, the Suffolk Rams were able to win their final games of the regular season, finishing 9-14-1.

The first of the two victories came at home against Becker College Hawks on Feb. 19.

With the Rams’ improving goalie Brandon Smolarek in net, Suffolk was ready to put together a 60-minute effort.

The Rams opened up the scoring in the first period when Charlie McGinnis tallied his ninth goal of the season, just two minutes into the game, giving his team a 1-0 lead.

The Hawks responded with a goal of their own in the first period, which ended tied at one.

(Photo courtesy of Suffolk Athletics)

In the second, Becker came out and grabbed the lead, taking a 2-1 advantage over the Rams.

A Hawks hooking call gave the Rams a power play opportunity with about five minutes left in the second. Simon Leahy eventually cashed in on the power play, scoring his ninth of the year as well, bringing the game even at two.

The third period was all Rams as they tacked on two more goals and took the game by a final of 4-2. Smolarek was sharp in this game, saving 39 out of 41 shots faced.

Coach Chris Glionna was pleased with his performance.

“Brandon works real hard, the other goalies push him,” said Glionna. “As always, the play of the team in front of him makes a difference.”

In the regular season finale, Suffolk looked to take on Wentworth at the Stereti Rink in the North End.

After a scoreless first period, captain Charlie McGinnis once again found his magic and scored what would be the eventual game-winning goal for the Rams.

McGinnis’ goal was his team-leading 10th of the year and was assisted by Stanton Turner.

Taking a 1-0 advantage into the third, Suffolk added to their lead when defenseman Andrew Ball picked a great time to net his first goal of the season.

Two empty net goals would seal the win for Suffolk and a birth into postseason action.

Smolarek made 30 saves for the shutout and finished 8-81 on the year.

Suffolk has been playing the hockey they are accustomed to seeing from its players as of late, and have really cleaned up their penalty killing.

“I think we have been playing good hockey for about a month,” said Glionna. “We lost some tough games to close out January but the effort was there. Just didn’t get many bounces.”

The Rams will play their first playoff game on the road against Johnson  & Wales who finished 17-7-1 this season.

The Rams have played  twice this year, each game resulting in a loss, including a tough OT defeat recently.

Glionna is excited for this game and is not worried about his teams’ lack of ability to win on the road with just two  wins this year.

“They are a good team,” said Glionna. “We lost a tough overtime game three weeks ago to them. I expect it to be a great game.”

“Its hard to win on the road in our league. Johnson & Wales has a strong fan base so it will be a hostile environment. However we have played at places like Bowdoin, Colby, Tufts and UMass Boston, so we should be prepared.” The Rams need to be prepared so they can bring home a big victory March 1.  

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Men’s hockey stumbles into the playoffs