2020-21 Season Preview: East Haven Co-op Yellow Jackets
2019-20 Record: 8-12-0
Head Coach: Lou Pane (35th season)
Key Returning Players: Rocco Plano (D, Sr.), David Amatruda (F, Sr.), Cory Benni (F, Sr.), Duncan Rider (F, Jr.)
Impact Newcomers: Cam Grillo (D, Sr.), Josh Penn (F, Sr.)
Goalie Situation: Junior Ethan Roach emerges in the wake that was left by graduated goalie Logan Hamilton. There are definitely huge pads to fill here, there’s no question. Let’s see how Roach responds.
Key Losses: Logan Hamilton, Alec Speirs (both to graduation)
Outlook: East Haven Co-op has now had two sub .500 seasons after their impressive, yet underperforming, 2016-17 season. Lou Pane is now in Year 35 of his illustrious career and knowing his pride for the East Haven program as a whole, he’ll be eager to right the ship. From a skater standpoint, East Haven Co-op didn’t lose a ton of personnel. Alec Speirs led the Yellow Jackets with 25 points last year, so that will need to be replaced, but senior Dave Amatruda (18 G, 6 A, 24 Pts), an 18-goal scorer from a year ago, will look to cement his name as one of Division II’s most lethal options. Senior Cory Benni (5 G, 13 A, 18 Pts) and junior Duncan Rider will be rock solid as well on the offensive end. Senior defenseman Rocco Plano (2 G, 14 A, 16 Pts) is as underrated as they come on the blue line and he will allow for a calming presence there for the Co-op. Reinforcements have arrived for the Yellow Jackets in the form of two senior transplants from the junior hockey realm. Senior defenseman Cam Grillo and senior forward Josh Penn join the Co-op from Old Saybrook and East Hampton. Grillo, a former Trinity Pawling attendee, is coming off an injury but is quite solid while Penn arrives after playing for the CT Chiefs. Where growing pains will be felt most for East Haven is in net, where longtime, dependable backstop Logan Hamilton has graduated. Junior Ethan Roach will need to elevate his game to a varsity level for the Yellow Jackets to be competitive.