The Bedford High School/Shawsheen Valley Technical High School girls’ hockey team continued their midseason 5 game winning streak on Monday, handily outscoring Wakefield Memorial High School, 9-3, in a non-league game at Stoneham Arena.
BucTech is a collaborative team with Bedford and Shawsheen contributing players and funding to offer students an opportunity to play at the varsity level when there may not be enough athletes individually to outfit an entire team.
Athletes from Bedford and the towns that contribute to the Shawsheen population have been filling out the roster since the collaboration began in 2019. Head coach Kate O’Shea has been at the helm with assistants Rachel Desilets and Mike Giordano for the past three seasons.
This year’s roster has 12 Shawsheen players hailing from Billerica, Wilmington, and Tewksbury. Bedford contributes two veteran Bedford High School juniors and four eighth grade rookies currently attending the John Glenn Middle School.
And contribute they have. In Monday’s game, just over six minutes into the first period, coming a few seconds off of a power play kill, Bedford eighth grader Sophia Demeo connected a pass to Wilmington’s Alexis Fox to score BucTech’s first goal of the night.
Within the next few minutes of play, Bedford eighth grade defender Olivia O’Brien racked up three assists, first to Bedford eighth grader Becca Sobol, then to Bedford junior Co-Captain Anna McEachern, and a third pass after stealing the puck in the defensive zone to Sobel waiting at half ice with only the goalie in front of her. Sobel took the fast break down the ice, and deked the goalie to make the score 4-0 only 10 minutes into the game.
Wakefield put one point on the board with less than two minutes left on the clock in the first period, and a body checking penalty that carried over gave Shawsheen/Bedford a player advantage heading into the second period.
The second period told a similar story. Coming out of the power play that started the period, O’Brien made a key save in the defensive end, passed the puck out to Fox, who connected with Paige Fuller (BucTech Co-Captain and a league all-star from last season) for a shot in front of the net that was blocked by Wakefield Goalie Julia Welch. A trailing O’Brien was ready and buried the rebound for a glove side shot to the back of the net.
After that, BucTech squashed Wakefield power play goal hopes while Demeo spent time in the penalty box for body checking. Wakefield couldn’t respond in kind, and on the faceoff immediately following a tripping call against Wakefield, center Demeo connected directly to Sobel waiting in position for the one time shot, earning Sobel a hat trick on the evening.
Demeo added one more assist to her point total and Demeo, McEachern and Fuller scored before the buzzer at the end of the second period. That buzzer coincided with an official’s whistle recording a tripping call on Fox officially marked on the score sheet at 0:00 to carry into the final period of the game.
Even with the scoreboard no longer keeping the accurate score (goal differentials up to six goals are displayed and announced), Wakefield’s offense did not relent. They put up a strong and at times, scrappy effort in the third period, landing a Wakefield and two BucTech players in the penalty box throughout the last 10 minutes of the game.
Billerica native playing as Shawsheen/Bedford’s goalie, Elianna Monroe, saw some action in the third period, keeping the puck out of the net with glove saves, kick saves, body blocks, a facemask save, and needing to clear Wakefield players setting up camp in the crease out with the help of the defense. Wakefield was allowed two goals in the third period, ending the game with the 9-3 final.
Shawsheen/Bedford currently has eight players on the injured list, leaving 10 skaters and one goalie to continue the best run the team has seen since its inception.
Shawsheen/Bedford’s next game is at their home rink (Janas Arena in Lowell) against Melrose at 8 p.m. on Wednesday.