Change has come to the Super 7. At long last, there is a new No. 1, but the changes go up and down the board in this one. (Records through Dec. 22; does not include Monday’s games.)
1. Garnet Valley (8-0-1) Last Week: No. 2
The change at the top has occurred thanks to the Jags’ win over Springfield. I think it’s pretty clear that they’re for real, especially on the offensive side of the ledger. But perhaps more important is what Greg Schenk has done in goal. He stepped in for Michael Wydila and got the better of Springfield, then held down Conestoga in a 4-1 win last time out. That’s pretty impressive.
2. Springfield (6-2-0) Last Week: No. 1
I can’t imagine that things around Springfield are all that enjoyable at the moment, what with the loss to Garnet Valley ahead of a 21-day hiatus between games. The Cougars are a team that has plenty of experience, so we’ll see how they respond to that loss with plenty of time to mull it over.
3. Haverford (7-3-1) Last Week: No. 5
The Fords move up after getting the better of Ridley last week, avenging an earlier loss. Paired with an early-season tie with Garnet Valley, the Fords credentials are solid. Joey Harant (2.41 GAA, .899 save percentage) has put up big numbers, and it appears as though Joe Gibbs and Shane Moran have emerged as the offensive threats they were looking for.
4. Ridley (8-2-1) Last Week: No. 4
A 6-1 win over Radnor is a big result for the Green Raiders, especially on the heels of a loss to Haverford, heading into the winter break. They’ve managed to keep their early momentum, and it should serve them well with a tough stretch to close the season.
5. Radnor (5-2-0) Last Week: No. 3
I wasn’t at the game against Ridley, but I suspect what happened is that the Green Raiders’ top defensive pairing neutralized Oliver Brotman’s line. The quest for the Raiders as the season goes on is to find ways to generate points without Brotman on the ice.
6. Cardinal O’Hara (4-6-0) Last Week: No. 6
The record is better for the Lions, even if their two-game winning streak came against Roman, a team that hasn’t won since October. (And needing to light the lamp eight times to beat them Dec. 13, that’s not great.) The O’Hara offense just isn’t clicking: Only two players, Dan O’Neill and Andrew Beck, are averaging a point per game, and Beck is a defenseman who has seen five of his 10 points come as assists on the power play.
7. Episcopal Academy (2-2-1) Last Week: No. 7
I’ll never understand Inter-Ac scheduling. The Churchmen play five games in six weeks from mid-November to mid-December, then play nine games in 28 days from Jan. 6-Feb. 3. Either way, circle Jan. 22 and Jan. 31 on the calendar for meetings with Haverford School, an always loving and relaxed affair.