West Puck: A 2018-2019 Retrospective

Congratulations! David McQuiston (’19) accepts the Flyers Cup All-Tournament team award from Flyers legends Bob Kelly (left) and Brad Marsh (right).

Congratulations! David McQuiston (’19) accepts the Flyers Cup All-Tournament team award from Flyers legends Bob Kelly (left) and Brad Marsh (right).

Sean Barron, Staff Reporter

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West Puck finished the regular season with a disappointing 6-9-4 regular season record. After winning the Ches-Mont Championship in the previous season, the Whippets were hoping to defend their title. Unfortunately, the Whippets lost 5-4 in overtime to Henderson, who would eventually win the title. However, the season wasn’t yet over. Next up for Downingtown West was the Flyers Cup tournament in which they were seeded 15th out of 16 teams. Historically, West usually does not fare well in this tournament as they have never advanced beyond the second round. Their first matchup this year was against the number 2 seed Central Bucks South. The Whippets played a terrific game which resulted in a 5-2 upset, kicking off an unprecedented Cinderella run. Next up for West was the number 7 seed Boyertown Bears. The Whippets shocked Boyertown with a 3-1 victory, putting West into the semi-finals and giving them their highest berth in tournament history. West was faced with a huge test as they faced the 3 seeded Conestoga Pioneers. In the previous match up earlier in the year, Conestoga beat West 6-3. However, this time around the Whippets got the better of the Pioneers in a highly entertaining 8-5 victory. The Whippets earned a spot in the Flyers Cup Championship game, which was played at the Wells Fargo Center, home of the Philadelphia Flyers.

Their opponent, crosstown rivals and number 1 seeded Downingtown East, had won back to back Flyers Cup Championships and was looking to win their third straight. The Whippets knew they had to play their best game if they wanted to finish off their Cinderella run and upset top-seeded East. Unfortunately, East was too much for the 15th-seeded Whippets as they defeated West 7-2. The Whippets magical run was ended, but not before lifelong memories were created. Senior forward David McQuiston, who was named to the All-Tournament team, said, “It was an amazing experience, sure it didn’t end the way we wanted, but it was a once in a lifetime experience that I was happy to be a part of.”

Another great storyline to come out of a disappointing loss was the return of Ryan Biskowitz (‘19), who missed nearly the entire season with a torn ACL and meniscus. Ryan was able to skate with the team in warmups and dress in full uniform. Biskowitz, whose brother Josh (‘19) is an assistant captain for the Whippets, supported the team from the back of the bench all season, and was able to dress for what would be his final high school game at the Wells Fargo Center. Biskowitz said about his return, “It has been really difficult dealing with such an injury…I’ve supported my teammates from the bench all season but I’ve desperately wanted to be out there. To be able to come back and skate at the Wells Fargo Center in front of my friends made everything I’ve struggled with this year worth it.”

Despite a disappointing finish, the Whippets made history with three upsets in the Flyers Cup tournament as the 15th seed. No West team has ever made it to the Flyers Cup Championship and for this team to make it is a huge accomplishment. Playing at the Wells Fargo Center created lifelong memories for all that were involved. Congratulations to the boys of West Puck on a great tournament run!

 

Welcome back! Ryan Biskowitz (’19) returns to the ice for the first time after recovering from a torn ACL.

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