By Ross Forman – Providence Catholic is on a roll: 5 consecutive wins and victories in 8 or their last 9 games. Plus, the Celtics have won 7 straight Catholic League games, and with 20 points in 12 games, they lead the league, ahead of Saint Ignatius, Benet Academy and St. Rita.
Forward Tom Davis is a shining Celtic with 11 goals, 13 assists in 12 league games – and his 24 points is the most in the league. Davis has failed to grab a point in only one league game and had a memorable 3-goal, 3-assist game against Fenwick in mid-October.
The Celtics feature four others sitting among the top 15 Catholic League scorers: Peyton Botich (14 goals, 4 assists), Tom Zschach (4, 12), Dan O’Shea (4,8) and Blake Brenczewski (3,7).
“We wanted to go into the year and make sure that we keep building and making steps forward every single time we touch the ice. We wanted to establish the playoff mentality right off the start so that when we get there we aren’t foreign to the post-season,” Zschach said. “Although a couple games we would have like a different outcome, this group feels strong about how we are building and playing in the big games, and (we) are hoping to keep carrying this into playoffs.”
The Kennedy Cup could return to Providence Catholic in a few months, adding to the school’s Catholic League legacy with CCHL titles in 2014, 2016 and 2017.
Hey, PC might also skate next March at the UC.
It shouldn’t surprise many if Providence makes a return trip to the United Center as head coach Nick Iaciancio will look to smack the monkey of their collective shoulders. PC went to the UC in 2016 and 2017 – and both times had to settle for the state’s second-place banner.
Providence now sits at No. 6 in the Illinois High School Hockey Top 25 Rankings.
The new rankings (as of Nov. 21) start with New Trier Green and Glenbrook North at 1-2. They are, without question, the two most-dominant teams this season. Saint Viator is No. 3, followed by fellow Scholastic Hockey League foes Glenbrook South and Barrington.
Stevenson stands at No. 7, followed by Benet Academy, Loyola Gold and Saint Ignatius to round out the top 10.
Here’s a look at the current Top 25 rankings for Illinois High School Hockey Teams:
1. New Trier Green
2. Glenbrook North
3. Saint Viator
4. Glenbrook South
6. Providence Catholic
8. Benet Academy
9. Loyola Gold
10. Saint Ignatius
11. Waubonsie Valley
12. Hinsdale Central
15. New Trier White
16. Maine Township
18. Naperville North
19. Lake Forest
24. New Trier Blue
25. Wheaton West
Five to Watch: Carmel Catholic, BG/H/W, St. Rita, D155, Neuqua Valley
Ross Forman has written about Illinois high school hockey for more than 15 years and is the only sportswriter to have covered Illinois High School hockey every year during that stretch. He played locally and then at Indiana University before becoming a referee. Ross was a referee for the State Championship game several years ago at the United Center. Contact Ross by email at Rossco814@aol.com.