Helen may not have been in Troy this weekend, but the Red Team was, as both they and the White Team represented in their respective Michigan MLK tournaments. The Red Team came within inches of winning their second straight tournament, while the White Team went 2-2 and ended the tournament with a measure of vengeance, defeating the USA Patriots 6-2, after succumbing to them in the opening game of the tournament.

The Red Team entered the Motor City first, and promptly made their presence felt, by beating the West Niagara Flying Aces, a Canadian team known for their size and physical play. The BSJ line led the way, with Eli Jacobs and Josh Becker picking up 4 points each, and winger Sam Shapiro notching 3, in route to a 6-3 win. Sophomore defenseman Keegan O’Neal also had a big game, not only patrolling the blue line, but also contributing 3 assists in the win. Tyler Corrigan, Sam Cohen, and Nate Wolfe also picked up a point each in the opener, while Ryan Curry was a physical force, and Zach Winicour was steady all night on the blue line.

In Game 2, the Red Team took on the Talbot Trail Blazers, who hail from Essex, Ontario, across the river from Detroit. The Trail Blazers were no match for DHS, who controlled the play all night and came away with an 8-0 win. There were numerous stars in the game, none of whom shined brighter than Roman “Beans” Ghorbani, who backstopped the win and earned his first shutout of the season. Josh Becker had his first hat trick of the season and finished with a 5-point night, while Sam Shapiro had 4 points, Eli Jacobs had 3, and Dustin Zimberoff, Aaron Rubin, and Keegan O’Neal each had 2 points. Miles White, Sam Cohen, Reed Wolf, Zach Winicour, and Jackson Malk also had points in the lopsided win. 

Game 3 against Glenbard, a combined-school team consisting of students from Glen Ellyn and Lombard, proved to be a much tougher contest, but the Warriors were up to the challenge, thanks in no small measure to the excellent goaltending of Alex Richter. “Tech” limited the vaunted Glenbard offense to 2 goals, setting the stage for a 5-2 Deerfield victory. Dustin Zimberoff led the offense with a goal and an assist, while Aaron Rubin picked up 2 assists from the blue line. Josh Becker also had a goal and an assist, and the captain, Miles White, scored on an impressive coast-to-coast rush. Eli Jacobs and Sam Shapiro also notched a goal each, and Reed Wolf and Keegan O’Neal each picked up an assist. Alex was awarded his 3rd assist of the season on Eli’s goal, and his 3 assists are the most by a Deerfield goalie since 2019.

The Warriors knew that Sunday’s championship game against PREP, a 4-school conglomerate who also entered the game with a perfect 3-0 record, would be their toughest contest. The atmosphere was tense, and it remained so, even after Josh Becker opened the scoring, capitalizing on a rare PREP miscue. PREP scored the next 2 goals, but Dustin Zimberoff evened the score, assisted by defensemen Aaron Rubin and Zach Winicour. After PREP regained the lead, Josh scored on a breakway, having been sprung by Tyler Corrigan and Keegan O’Neal. PREP again went out in front, and they held a 4-3 lead with 1:19 left in the game, when Deerfield was awarded a penalty shot, due to a PREP player throwing his stick at the puck. All eyes were on Dustin, as he methodically made his way toward the PREP net. Zimbo dipsy-doodled until the PREP netminder committed, and he then pulled the puck back and fired it home, tying the game and sending it into overtime. Alex kept PREP at bay in OT, and the game headed to a shootout. Alex managed to stop the first 2 out of 3 PREP shooters, but unfortunately, the Warriors were not able to convert on any of their chances, and PREP took home the coveted trophy. Despite the heartbreaking loss, Deerfield should be proud of their 2nd-place finish against some very tough competition.

The White Team did not finish quite as high as the Red Team, but they played well, especially after a 6-3 travel day loss to a well-rested USA Patriots team. Brody Siegel scored the Warriors’ first goal, with assists going to Danny St. John and AJ Friedman. Ethan Schmidt netted the second goal, assisted by McKinley Houston and Noah Pockross. The "Pocket Rocket" and Schmitty then reversed roles, with the former scoring the 3rd goal, and the latter getting the assist.

The Warriors achieved a better result in Game 2, eking out a 5-4 victory, which featured stellar goaltending by Freshman Nathan Curry, good defense and physical play by Cole Childers, and a hat trick by Max Chudnovsky. Chud ended up with a 4-point night, as he and Simon Willis assisted on a goal by Alex "Mac" McManamna. Mac, Schmitty, McKinley, and Nolan “Fetzky” Fettner all had 2-point nights, while AJ and Big Brandon Brown also had assists in the win.

The White Team did not fare as well in Game 3, against Evanston, losing 4-2 to their near-northside neighbors. The first DHS goal was scored by Chud, assisted by Mac and the Pocket Rocket, and the second goal was scored by Schmitty, with assists going to Fettzky and McKinley.

In their final game of the tournament, the White Team took on the Patriots for a second time. A good night’s sleep proved to do the trick, as the Warriors got their revenge, with a 6-2 win. Nathan Curry was again sensational in net, and defenseman Will Battaglia had a monster game, notching a goal and 2 assists. Jackson Malk, running on fumes after a 4-game stint with the Red Team, dug deep and managed a goal and an assist. Schmitty, the Pocket Rocket, Simon Willis, and Graham Nervick rounded out the goal-scoring, with Graham also showing some late-game grit, resulting in him spending 4 minutes in the sin bin. Chud had 2 helpers in the game, and additional assists went to Jason Lubeck, Mac, McKinley, and Fettzky.

Both teams will get some practice time in this week, before the Red Team returns to the ice in a big game against rival Highland Park, Saturday night (1/20), at Twin Rinks. The White Team's next game is next Tuesday night (1/22), against the Libertyville IceCats, at Glacier Ice Arena. Come out and support your Warriors!