'B.C.R.' unites former rivals, but adds depth
By Steve Smith - Staff Writer
Vernon/Bolton/Coventry - posted Tue., Dec. 4, 2012
Coach Chris Stevenson said the early practices of the hockey season are a little more difficult this season, because he has more players to get familiar with than usual. “I need name tags on the backs of their helmets,” Stevenson said, after his Bolton-Coventry-Rockville team scrimmaged against Tolland-Windham-E.O. Smith on Nov. 29.
Rockville’s alliance with Manchester and Stafford ended last spring, and the new co-op with Bolton and Coventry presents some challenges, but the team is quickly overcoming them, the coach said. With an almost even 7-7-9 split between the three schools, Stevenson said many of the players were familiar with each other, having played in youth leagues together, but also as rivals, since for the last several years “Man-ville’s” chief rival was the Bolton-Coventry-Lyman team, known as “B.C.L.”
Fortunately, none of the players will have to get used to new digs, as both former teams played their home games at the Bolton Ice Palace.
“It was tough for some of them,” Stevenson said, adding that the parents’ booster clubs had arranged events during the fall league season, so that the rivals-turned-teammates would at least become familiarized with each other before the season started. The new co-op’s players adopted their own nickname, simply “B.C.R.”
“If we had all of them in the same room for the first time last Monday [the team’s first practice],” Stevenson said, “it would have been more difficult.”
On the ice, Stevenson said the team appears to have some offense, as well as good goalies. After the 7-2 scrimmage win over the Bucks, Stevenson said that while it was only four games into the practice season for both squads, he thinks his team has decent depth, but the most important thing is that they start gelling as a group. He added that he and the team are excited about the upcoming season and think their chances are good. The plan, he said, simply, is to “make the tournament and roll the dice.”
B.C.R. will drop the puck on the regular season on Dec. 14, hosting Housatonic-Northwestern-Wamogo. For a complete schedule, visit www.casciac.org.