CONTRIBUTED BY MOLLY LOUISON/SAGAMORE STAFF
The Massachusetts Junior Beanpot Championship had tensions running high as the score remained tied going into the third period of the championship match. Despite valiant efforts by the players, the game ultimately resulted in a loss for the Brookline Warriors to Bishop Feehan (3-1) on Jan. 15. However, the weekend left the boys varsity hockey team with much to celebrate.
The Junior Beanpot Championship is a tournament hosted by the Travis Roy Foundation (TRF) designed to support the Foundation’s endeavor to help those with spinal cord injuries. To honor the fifth year anniversary of this philanthropic tournament, four high school boys hockey teams in the greater Boston area came together to participate in a two day tournament.
Travis Roy, a Boston University hockey player and the founder of the Travis Roy Foundation, passed away on Oct. 29, 2020. During this year’s opening ceremony, senior and captain of the boys varsity hockey team Jacob Gurdin, his mother and the Roy family stood in Roy’s absence to address the generosity of the donors who contributed to the tournament. They delivered a tribute to the program and to Roy himself. The cliche rang true that “there was hardly a dry eye in the house.”
Gurdin and his family played a significant role in the making of the tournament as Gurdin started it for his Bar Mitzvah project while in middle school. Gurdin said that he had previously been to a TRF fundraiser, so partnering the tournament with the TRF was an easy decision. Since then, the Gurdin and Travis Roy developed a very close friendship.
Friday night proved victorious for Brookline against Lexington, promising their advance to the championship game. Although the second period commenced with a 1-0 Lexington lead, freshman and forward Grady Ames brought neutrality to the score with his first varsity goal off an assist from senior and defender Rohan Gervais. The final period arrived and senior and forward Caleb Weldon scored at the left post with an assist from junior forward Stephan MacDougall. Despite the successful push, the battle continued into overtime, where Weldon passed the puck to junior and captain Emmet Teahan who delivered the triumphant goal for Brookline.
The team cheered as they exited the locker room. Seniors Campbell Hawkins and Andrew Janowski said that they were extremely excited and optimistic about playing in the championship game.
“This means a lot to the team, especially because Jacob started this tournament, so it would be super awesome if we won the trophy tomorrow,” Hawkins said.
The next night, the team took on the Bishop Feehan Shamrocks in the championship game. The Warriors gained a lead within the first eight seconds after Teahan hit the puck off the post, allowing MacDougall to score. Despite a rather promising start, the Shamrocks quickly recovered. By the end of the third period, the scoreboard read 3-1 Bishop Feehan. With just over a minute on the clock, an on ice altercation broke out between the opposing teams. Teahan, the injured player for Brookline, deemed it a “dog fight.” He will be absent for the week and the player who charged at him was ejected from the game.
Although the outcome was not what they wanted, the Warriors didn’t allow for their good spirits to diminish entirely. The players rightfully took pride in their efforts not only in the game, but also in supporting TRF.
“It didn’t go the way we wanted, but we played for a good cause. We left everything we could on the ice. I mean, that’s all that matters,” MacDougall said.
The players are only looking forward as they move into the rest of their season. Coach Joe Iadarola was confident the team was ready to continue and go back to practice. Teahan said he was proud of the talent and strength his teammates demonstrated.
“I think that the Bishop Feehan game showed that we have some young guys and some backline guys that can step up when we need them to. I’m really excited to see what we can do. Hopefully we can do some damage at the playoffs this year,” Teahan said.
The proceeds from the gate fees, book sales, and raffle tickets will go directly towards the Foundation along with the $5,695 gathered in donations. Although the loss was felt, this victory was energizing.
“I’m just really happy to be able to be a part of it. It’s something I’ll always remember,” Teahan said.
Gurdin said that although the Warriors came up a game shy of the championship, it was well worth the cause.
“I know Travis is looking down and I know he’s proud. That makes it all worth it,” Gurdin said.