Hockey team looks to skate to success

Shane Murray, Matt Dunn and Dan Leary

Shane Murray, Matt Dunn and Dan Leary have led the hockey team to a good start this year as they captured the Cashman Tournament in December and got wins against Abington, Sacred Heart and Silver Lake.

Francisco Oliveira, Veritas Staff 

It’s 4:55 am and the groggy athletes are already at the ice rink. The frigid temperatures and early morning starts are something that they are used to. With success in their minds, the Rockland Hockey team is working hard and the athletes are preparing to have a winning season. But what gives them the drive to wake up so early and work hard?

Freshman Jake Johnson plays goalie and has a true passion for the game. “I love hockey for its speed. It is one of the fastest sports with constant play time,” he said.

Aspiring to play at the varsity level, Johnson hopes to have memorable moments with his team. “I am looking forward to bonding with the team,” said Johnson, “and getting to play with good athletes.”

Although confident with what he can provide for the team, Johnson is a little anxious to be playing with older and more experienced athletes. Johnson said, “I am a little nervous for this season because it is going to be my first time playing with the high school athletes.”   Along with the younger players, the team is bringing back some experienced and talented players.

Matt Dunn, a junior at RHS, varsity football quarterback, and hockey team captain, has truly found a calling as right offensive winger on the ice. Dunn explained how he has known his teammates for many years and has built chemistry and a great bond with them.

“Well, growing up almost all of us played together in youth, whether it be with the Bay State Breakers, South Shore Eagles, or Boston Jr. Terriers, so playing together all throughout our lives creates great chemistry that leads to success on the ice and bonding off the ice. It’s awesome getting to play with these group of guys everyday. I wouldn’t want it any other way,” said Dunn.

Over time, it is easy to build a love for a sport. You feel an attachment to it and you strive to get better and better. “The rush you get playing the game is just great overall. I love playing other sports, but there is something about hockey that catches me,” said Dunn.

“I think constantly moving and playing the game keeps it interesting and the fact that you get to go out on the ice and battle with kids you have known since you were three or four years old, makes it even better.”

Dunn has not only become a reliable player on the rink, but someone who is willing to help out the team in any way possible, a true captain. “Personally I want to have an overall great year. I’m playing with the some great players that make me better everyday I step on the ice. Personal goals are good to have but I think the main goal is for me to do whatever I can to help our team win, no matter what that is,” said Dunn.

Of course, most teams desire to make playoffs and make a strong impact within the championship, and the Rockland hockey team intends to do just that. Dunn said that he has total confidence in his team, and believes they can overcome any obstacles thrown at them. “As a team, our main goal is to win the South Shore League title and go to the tournament on a high note, and when we get there, keep playing the game we can play. I have full trust in our team and I think that making it all the way to the Garden is a realistic goal if we want to work at it. There are some tough teams to get through in order to get to the state championship, but if there is a team that can beat those big name teams, it’s us.”

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