It came down to a shootout.
Nine Hyde Park players had come at Charlestown Mite 1 Goalie Reed Fullerton, and he had turned all nine away. It was a game that was miraculously close as Hyde Park had beaten the Mite 1’s by a lot more than once.
But this time was different.
Next to the plate was the 9th try for Charlestown, and Ani Andersen skated toward the Hyde Park goalie. She wound up and shot.
The crowd went silent.
And she scored – winning the game for the Townies and sending them to the championship game.
“The whole place went crazy,” said Coach Harry Bartle. “People were cheering in the stands and the kids went crazy. Our goalie faced nine shots and stopped all nine, and Ani came through. Ironically, we had been beaten by Hyde Park in the Mayor’s Cup by quite a lot. We had to pull off a Miracle on Ice to win and they did.”
The Mite 1 team then went on to face Andover, which they had lost to in a rout 7-3 earlier in the season. Now, however, they were on Charlestown ice and they wanted the McGonagle/McGoff title.
The team won the game 3-2 in an all-out battle for the entire game, surviving an onslaught in the last minutes when Andover pulled its goalie. The effort was led by young Harry Bartle with two goals and Will Canavan with one goal. That gave them the A Division championship for this year’s McGonagle/McGoff.
“The kids played great and it was a lot of fun,” said Coach Bartle. “They loved playing in front of the crowds.”
The A Division field included Mite teams from Somerville, Hyde Park, Andover and Charlestown Mite 1.
Meanwhile, the B Division Mite tournament featured Hyde Park and the Charlestown Mite 2, Mite 3 and Mite 4 teams.
In that game, Coach Ryan Sutton and his charges took on Hyde Park in the championship game but fell short to take second place.
The annual tournament is one of the final events in the Charlestown Youth Hockey Association (CYHA) season and has been around more than 20 years. The McGonagle portion of the tourney is in honor of Bryan McGonagle, who died tragically in 1991 in a bicycle accident at the age of 10. He had been a youth hockey player and in honor of him, the family started the tournament in 1993, said his uncle, Joe McGonagle.
“Bryan was an avid hockey player and was really big into Charlestown Youth Hockey as was his older brother, Michael, and his dad,” said McGonagle. “When Bryan died, the hockey community was there for us and the hockey community stepped up with such support, prayers and help. It was the first time anyone had ever lost such a young child for a long time. The tournament was a way for us to say ‘thank you’ as a family.”
Danny McGoff was a dedicated volunteer at the tournament, and was a past president of the Charlestown Youth Hockey Association (CYHA). He, also, was lost too soon when he passed away in 2000. As a way to remember him, his name was added to the tournament, and the McGoff family is always supportive as well.