The Saranac Lake hockey team repeated as Section VII boys’ hockey champions and advanced to the state semifinals this past season.
It’s no surprise then that the Red Storm earned top honors in the Champlain Valley Athletic Conference All-Star team.
High-scoring forward Devin Darrah was named the conference’s Most Valuable Player and a spot on the First Team.
His coach, Will Ellsworth, was named a Co-Coach of the Year along with Beekmantown’s Justin Frechette.
Ellsworth, in his sixth year coaching the Red Storm, guided them to a 15-8-1 record to push his career record to 80-53-12. Saranac Lake defeated Queensbury in the NYSPHSAA Division II regional round to advance to the state final four for just the second time in school history.
Frechette, who earned coaching honors last season, finished his third year as Beekmantown’s head coach. He helped the team get to a 16-2-3 record and advance to the sectional semifinals. His career record stands at 49-12-4.
Lake Placid earned the Ray Holmes Sportsmanship Award.
Devin Darrah, Saranac Lake- Darrah, a First-Team pick last year, had a stellar season for the Red Storm. The senior finished with league highs in goals (40), assists (30) and points (70), leading the next player by 30 points. Darrah brought his top game in the post-season. He had four goals and three assists in three Section VII playoff games.
He had two goals and two assists in Saranac Lake’s comeback win over Queensbury in the Division II state regionals. He tallied three goals in the team’s 6-4 loss to Oswego in the Div. II semifinals.
He recorded at least a point in all but two of the Red Storm’s games.
“Devin recorded a hat trick in our final game of the season against state runner-up Oswego,” Ellsworth said. “That showed he can compete with the best hockey players in New York State. He is a three-time all-CVAC First-Team selection.”
Dustin Jacques, Lake Placid- Jacques, a senior, helped lead Lake Placid to a 14-6-1 record and a spot in the Section VII semifinals.
He tied for the team lead in points with 31 — 12 goals and a team-best 19 assists.
“Dustin had a solid year for us,” Lake Placid coach Keith Clark said. “He was our leading point producer and saved his best for his senior season.”
Eddie Kane, Lake Placid- Kane, a junior, led the Blue Bombers with 23 goals and also tied for the lead in points by adding three assists. He was a Second-Team pick last year.
“Eddie was our leading goal scorer and scored a lot of big goals for us,” Clark said. “He has a knack for finding the back of the net.”
Matt Letourneau, Northeastern Clinton- A captain on and off the ice, the senior was a First-Team selection in 2011.
Letourneau finished this season with four goals and nine assists for 13 points.
“He was an excellent two-way defenseman who was our quarterback on the power play and at even strength,” NCCS coach Rob Francis said. “He was a smooth skater with quick hands that made him hard to contain.”
Kyle Dora, Saranac Lake- The senior made it two years in a row on the First Team. He scored nine goals and added 19 assists for 28 points this past season.
“Not only did Kyle post impressive numbers as an offensive defenseman, he has that physicality that opposition fear,” Ellsworth said. “He logged much playing time and was an integral part as a captain on a final four team.”
Robby Knowles, Plattsburgh High- The junior netminder finished the season with 578 saves and two shutouts. He was the only player in Section VII to log every minute in net for his team.
“Robby was very good again all season and a big reason for our successful playoff run,” Plattsburgh High coach Jamie Reidy said. “He gave us a chance to win every game we played.”
Nate Foster, Beekmantown- Foster, a sophomore, makes his first all-star appearance. He was the Eagles’ top points-producer, finishing with 15 goals, 18 assists and 33 points.
“As only a sophomore, Nathan is a player who brings a rare level of speed to our line-up that is hard to match in the CVAC,” said Frechette. “He is a true finisher who has a knack for scoring big goals at key times in the game. As the points leader for our team this season, he will look to be one of the league leaders again next year.”
Austin Bradish, Beekmantown- Bradish, a versatile junior forward, was third on the team in points with 15 goals and nine assists. He was a Second-Team pick last year.
“Austin is a dominant forward who plays with a high level of intensity at both ends of the ice,” Frechette said. “His unique combination of size, skill and speed allows us to create mismatches against opposing teams’ defensemen. He is committed to doing whatever it takes to help our team win.”
Jack Tolosky, Plattsburgh High- Tolosky, a sophomore, scored 13 goals and assisted on 27 others this past season for 40 points, the most for the Hornets. He was second only to Darrah in assists and total points.
“Jack is an offensive threat every time he’s on the ice,” Reidy said. “He has been a top five CVAC scorer since eighth grade.”
Jordan Barriere, Beekmantown- Barriere, a senior team captain, was a key player for Beekmantown’s defense this year. He also added three goals and four assists as a blue-liner.
“Jordan anchored our blue line this season,” Frechette said. “He is a smooth-skating defenseman with a great first pass, who consistently makes plays for our team on both ends of the ice. As one of our best conditioned athletes, Jordan led the team in ice time this season.”
Eric Bechard, Plattsburgh High- Bechard, a ninth-grader, ended up with 31 points, scoring 12 goals and adding 19 assists.
“Already one of the best all-around players in the league, the freshman contributes on both ends of the ice,” Reidy said. “He is an absolute workhorse for our team.”
Dustin Plumadore, Beekmantown-
Plumadore earned Second-Team honors as a freshman last season for Saranac. In 2011-12, he recorded two shutouts and 537 saves.
“As only a sophomore, Dustin is a player who brings a high level of athleticism and skill to our crease,” Frechette said. “His passion for the game and commitment to working hard has enabled him to become a technically sound goaltender. He has the ability to make difficult saves when the play breaks down.”
Cole Carter, Beekmantown
Marshall Maynard, Plattsburgh
Joey Bridgeman, Saranac
Matt Phelan, Saranac Lake
Liam McDonough, NCCS
Nzoni Thompson, Lake Placid
Final scoring leaders
Player, school g a p
D. Darrah, SL 40 30 70
Tolosky, PHS 13 27 40
Foster, B’town 15 18 33
D. Jacques, LP 12 19 31
E. Kane, LP 23 8 31
Bechard, PHS 12 19 31
Dora, SL 9 19 28
Frechette, B’town 18 8 26
Strack, SL 19 7 26
Phelan, SL 13 12 25
Bradish, B’town 15 9 24
Maynard, PHS 13 7 20