The boys high school hockey regular season wraps up this week and several teams will shift their focus to the postseason.

In Eastern A, Lewiston (13-4-1) and Bangor (12-5-0) are dueling for the top seed and are separated by a mere handful of Heal points.

St. Dominic (11-6-0) will go in as the third seed while Cony (13-4-0) — winners of just four games last season — is poised to finish fourth.

“I’m not so sure anyone can catch us now,” said first-year Cony coach Chad Foye. “The kids are really excited. We talk a lot about not being satisfied. We want to keep working hard and keep expanding our goals.”

The Rams also appear headed to a showdown with No. 5 Maranacook/Hall-Dale/Winthrop (9-8-0) in the Eastern A quarterfinals.

MHW, which closes the regular season at Eastern B contender Messalonskee (14-3-0) on Wednesday at Sukee Arena, has a firm grasp on the fifth seed.

The Hawks defeated the Rams twice in the regular season, winning 4-2 and 4-3. Both teams call Bonnefond Ice Arena at Kents Hill home this season.

“We’re expecting this game, yes,” MHW coach Andy Dube said. “We’ll have a real tough game against Messalonskee and then we’ll be focusing on Cony. Cony and us are very similar teams with the same long-term and short-term goals.”

Added Foye: “We’ll be excited to play MHW. They got the better of us two times. We’d be ready to play a third time.”

MHW and Cony are two teams heading in opposite directions of late.

The Hawks defeated the Rams 4-3 on Jan. 10, but have gone 3-6-0 since.

Dube said the team could use a boost going into the playoffs, and a win over Messalonskee would provide just that.

“It would be a huge morale booster for us,” he said. “We haven’t had a big victory in quite awhile. It would be our biggest victory of the year. To pull it off would be a huge lift going into the playoffs.”

While the Hawks are struggling, the Rams are soaring. They are 9-1-0 since meeting the Hawks on Jan. 10.

So, does Cony belong in the conversation with Lewiston, Bangor and St. Dominic?

“Not until we beat one of them,” Foye said. “We just lost to Bangor, and they’re better than we are right now. The second time around who knows?”

• • •

Messalonskee (14-3-0) will enter the Eastern B playoffs as the No. 2 seed.

It will likely play either Orono (7-8-2) or John Bapst (8-9-0) in a quarterfinal game on Feb. 28.

Messalonskee defeated Orono 3-2 and John Bapst 4-1 in the regular season.

“No matter who we play it won’t be an easy matchup,” Messalonskee coach Mike Latendresse said. “You just never know. I do like the position we’re in. We’ve had a really good regular season and now we have to prepare ourselves. We want to go into the playoffs with some momentum.”

The Eagles can do so with a victory over MHW on Wednesday at Sukee Arena.

“It’s an important game for us,” added Latendresse, whose team is coming off a 3-1 loss to Western B frontrunner Greely. “One thing we don’t want to do is finish on a two-game losing streak. That is how we’ll approach it. Then we will see who we’ll play.”

The Eagles may be without top line forward Chase Cunningham, who missed Saturday’s game with Greely with an illness.

Latendresse said there is no rush to get Cunningham back into the lineup.

“We don’t need him for Wednesday, but we’d love for him to be in there,” Latendresse said. “We really just want him healthy for the playoffs. We’ll see how he feels.”

Bill Stewart — 621-5640

[email protected]


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