Kroon spoils shut out with late-game goal
Published January 22, 2021
By JENNIFER GENTILE
STONEHAM—The Melrose-Stoneham cooperative hockey team (“Stonerose”) returned to ice after two weeks of postponement and battled into the heart of the Middlesex Freedom League by hosting a talented Burlington team on Monday, Jan. 18 at Stoneham Arena. Melrose fell to a tough Red Devil squad, 6-1, but the game was not without it’s merits, including a goal from Melrose senior Sidney Kroon, who spoiled the shutout with a goal from the point that put Melrose on the board in the second half.
Stonerose goalie Grace Connell of Stoneham also offered plenty of fine saves against a chippy Burlington offense, who smothered Stonerose with shots over the afternoon. She made numerous saves at the start of the game and didn’t stop. Eventually, Red Devils Faith Steiner, Anna Viglione and Lexi MacKinnon found the net to help Burlington take a quick lead. Stonerose defense had their moments, but Melrose players Hannah Connolly, Sidney Kroon, and Itia Figuera and Lucy Clark on defense have helped keep Melrose in the game.
Melrose coach Frank Sorrenti notes the challenges of coming back after a long break. After a COVID pause, Melrose had to compete without practice over the last two weeks, causing a feet to the fire situation, of sorts. “It’s definitely been a challenge to return without practice. We had to play a lot of catch up and you have get back into conditioning. But Burlington was a tough team, even though they lost some players to transfer last year, they were tougher than advertised. We just weren’t able to generate enough offense to get the job done.”
One problem was allowing too much traffic in front of the net. “We needed to clear out the traffic in front of the net so Grace [goalie] could see the puck the way she needed to,” says Sorrenti. “Burlington was seeing success from the point, and we need to help her in those situations.”
Melrose players such as Sidney Kroon and Hannah Connolly continue to add their talent to the team. “Hannah moves the puck well and passes nicely. She has great instincts and brings an edge to her game. And Sidney is our offensive defender. She’s a great kid to coach – 110% effort always. You always know what you are going to get.” He is also pleased to see the effort of new freshman Lucy Clark who has transitioned to defense to help the team out. “She’s game. Working hard in her new position.”
On tap are a few games against Watertown, a team Melrose used to co-op with. It’s always a fun reunion for the two teams, so expect some competitive hockey. “I know Watertown is a little low in numbers but they are not without talent, like us. These should be good games.” The match up is currently schedule this Wednesday (post deadline) at John Ryan Arena. The teams are expected to meet on Saturday at Stoneham Arena at a time TBD. Fans are encouraged to visit our social media pages for updates.