A change in the penalty for fighting in a high school hockey game has led to the Greely boys’ hockey team forfeiting two victories.
On Jan. 10, Greely forward Tommy Thompson, York forward Zach Franklin and York defenseman Nick Walsh were ejected for fighting in the second period at Family Ice in Falmouth.
Greely, the reigning Class B state champion, cruised to a 13-0 victory.
“We thought his ejection from the game for fighting resulted in a one-game suspension and he sat out the next game,” Greely Coach Barry Mothes said.
Mothes was unaware the Maine Principals’ Association increased the punishment for the infraction to a two-game suspension.
That’s stiffer than the punishment for fighting recommended by the National Federation of State High Schools Associations.
Thompson didn’t play when the Rangers won 6-1 against Gardiner on Jan. 12 at the new Bank of Maine Ice Vault in Hallowell, but he did play during Greely’s 4-1 win against St. Dominic on Jan. 16 and in its 5-2 victory Jan. 21 against Yarmouth.
Last Wednesday, officials from the Cumberland school reported their failure to adhere to the new MPA rule. Mothes had learned about the rule change the previous evening during a makeup session of a mandatory rules clinic.
The makeup session was scheduled because a number of head coaches didn’t attend an earlier session, held Nov. 15 in Gorham and at six other learning facilities spread across the state.
“Once Greely realized a rule had been broken, they did everything they could to make it right and they did it correctly,” said Mike Burnham, the assistant executive director for the MPA.
“We made a mistake and I take full responsibility for it,” Mothes said.
Last Friday, Greely learned it would have to forfeit its victories against St. Dominic and Yarmouth because, according to MPA rules, an ineligible player had been used in those two games.
“It was obviously very difficult news to pass on to the team,” Mothes said. “The kids put a lot of work into those two wins, but we’ve just got to let it go and move on.”
The two forfeits have left the Rangers with a 7-4 record and in second place behind Camden Hills in the current Western Class B Heal point standings.
At 10-0, the front-running Windjammers remain the state’s lone unbeaten team.
Next month, Greely is scheduled to play two games against the Windjammers.
THE YORK girls went through a 1-1-1 stretch in late December with a loss to Falmouth and a tie to Cape Elizabeth-Waynflete.
Since then the Wildcats (12-3-1) have won 6 of 7 games, including a one-goal loss to Greely, an overtime win over Scarborough and last week’s 1-0 victory over Lewiston.
“The difference I see is we became more disciplined in our systems and we started to use a deeper bench,” York Coach Jeff Hird said.
“We now have enough gas to get through to the end of the game.”
The Wildcats’ system allows an opponent several shots — but few quality chances — while capitalizing on their own opportunities.
In the Lewiston victory, York was outshot, 32-7.
Tori Stocks, who got the winner, is also an excellent defenseman, as is Kendall Carr.
Backing them both up has been the superb play of goalie Olivia Drew.
On offense, Rachel Yorke and linemate Olivia Leroux have been the biggest threats.
WHEN CHEVERUS played Gorham-Bonny Eagle last Friday, it was a showcase of two of the state’s better senior players, forward Katie Roy of the Stags and Rams defenseman Rachel Litif.
But who expected the pair to total 19 points?
Roy recorded eight goals and two assists to lead Cheverus to a 12-9 win. Litif, ever the passer, had three goals and six assists.
The Stags (5-10-1) are holding on to the last playoff spot in the west.
Staff Writer Kevin Thomas contributed to this report.
Staff Writer Paul Betit can be contacted at 791-6424 or at: