March 9, 2013

Beekmantown has state championship in sight

UTICA — In the days leading up to this weekend’s final four, Beekmantown boys’ hockey coach Justin Frechette has stressed one word to his team — believe.

The third-ranked Eagles (18-3-1) challenge No. 5 Syracuse CBA/Jamesville-DeWitt in this morning’s NYSPHSAA Division II semifinal at the Utica Memorial Auditorium for 9:30 a.m.

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“We’re going down there to win two hockey games, and that’s our goal as a program,” Frechette said. “We’re not going down there for vacation, or to enjoy the experience. A big mistake people often times make is they go down there not quite sure if they can compete.

“I’m excited about the challenge. As Herb Brooks used to say, ‘Great moments are born from great opportunity.’ That’s what this weekend’s all about. It’s an opportunity, but we have to take advantage of it.”

Beekmantown received an automatic berth to the state semifinals with a 4-3 defeat of Plattsburgh High in the Section VII title game Feb. 27.

Nate Foster (28-20-48) tops the Eagles in points with 48. The junior forward has scored two or more goals in a game on eight occasions.

Brenden Carnright (12-28-40), Austin Bradish (19-21-31) and Kyle Bisonette (16-12-28) rank second through fourth in total points, respectively. The trio have accounted for over 42 percent of Beekmantown’s goal production this season.

“I think our players have done a great job of doing what we’ve asked them to do, and I think they complement each other well,” Frechette said. “We’ve got size and speed, and the kids have done a great job in the offseason program. I think we’re a well-balanced team.”

Frechette’s Eagles are backed by junior goaltender Dustin Plumadore, who recorded his Section VII record-setting seventh shutout in a 4-0 blanking of Saranac Lake Feb. 21.

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