Barrington-Portsmouth girls’ hockey co-op off to 3-0 start

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The Barrington-Portsmouth girls’ hockey co-op is off to quite a start this winter.

The Eagles won two games last week — a 4-1 victory over the Narragansett-South Kingstown-North Kingstown co-op on Thursday and a 6-2 victory over Lincoln High School on Saturday. The two wins bring Barrington to a perfect 3-0 record and sole possession of first place.

The locals kicked off their current campaign with a 10-2 drubbing of the Smithfield-North Smithfield co-op on Saturday, Dec. 8. The Eagles have outscored their opponents 20-5 over the first three games and head coach Deneen Stebenne said the wins have been a complete team effort.

Junior Olivia Lucas is one of the squad’s leading scorers. She first lit the lamp against Narragansett with 9:22 remaining in the first period. She later added a second goal on a power play with 12:57 remaining in the second.

Sophomore Danielle Makucevich also scored one goal against the Mariners as did fellow sophomore Meghan Miller, who also played well against Lincoln.

Versus Lincoln, Miller scored the night’s first goal on a power play with 6:16 remaining in the first. She later added three more to finish with four scores on the night. Other goals came from sophomore Leah Hoder and junior Julia Flaherty.

Stebenne had no shortage of praise for her entire team. She said Lucas and Hoder have been “unbelievable” while sophomore Kelly Kraunelis and Makucevich have been “awesome.”

Stebenne also pointed to the “tremendous” performance of Flaherty and junior goalie Sophie Faxon along with the play of senior captain Kathleen Saunders, freshmen Allison Kelsey, Casie Castello, Julia Callahan, Lilly Hallgring and Stephanie Galbraith, sophomore Mia Hallgring and junior Beatrice Bramhall.

It’s a list of names that collectively represents a young roster with top-to-bottom depth. Stebenne said the line-up has given her the opportunity to mix up the make-up of different lines and keep opposing coaches guessing about which players will be on the ice and when.

“It’s awesome,” Stebenne said.

“We have so much depth this year, more than I planned on. It gives me the opportunity to be able to move players around. Everyone should be used to playing with everyone.”

Stebenne also said the entire team has demonstrated tremendous effort, and despite relatively even shots-on-goal in each victory the squad has been able to stymie its opponents’ chances while making the most of its own.

Stebenne said it was tough to get the entire team together before the season’s first game with injuries and illness, but that doesn’t seem to have had much impact on team chemistry.

Barrington skates again this Friday night against Cranston. The game will be played at the Smithfield Municipal Rink at 7 p.m.

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