BTHS Hockey Team Completes Another Successful Season


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Jed Coats, Sports Editor

The BTHS hockey team’s season is in the books and the seniors, all from either Belleville West, East, Althoff, or Gibault, having played their last games and finished their last shifts in high school.  Now, after all the moments have passed and the final minutes ran down, the memories are all they have now from this season. In their final two games the BTHS hockey team played Columbia and Granite City.  While Columbia was handled easily, they lost to Granite City in the semi-finals.

“Columbia was a solid team but we knew we would come out on top.  Granite City was all around the best team in the league and we gave them the best fight we could, but they ended up coming out on top,” senior Matthew Papachrisanthou said.

Like what any season has, there were plenty of ups and downs and challenges along the way to their second playoff berth in as many seasons.  Although the BTHS hockey team’s record was a solid 18-4-2, it was not at all easy to get there.

“We expected to beat Columbia, but we knew Granite was going to be tough.  We only struggled against Granite City the whole season; other than them we believed we had a chance to go back to back,” senior Bryce Campo said.  

Defeating a team who won 18 of their games is no easy feat. That being said, BTHS and Granite City have very similar teams, but Granite City was able to at least a couple things better than their rivals.

“They could do anything and everything on the ice; they could play different ways defensively and offensively to combat how other teams played,” senior Sam Latinette said.

Just like the ups and downs of a season, losing the seniors who have dedicated most of their lives to playing hockey is also inevitable.

“It felt like any other season until playoffs came, and then it got more real that they were the last high school games I would play,” Papachrisanthou said.

The start of the season always feels like any other, but as the season winds down it becomes more and more apparent that their high school careers are coming to an end, especially with a senior-loaded roster like theirs.

“It wasn’t much different in the beginning, but near the end of the season I knew it was going to be over soon so everyone on the team started playing their hearts out, mainly because we had thirteen seniors on the team,” Latinette said.