Two Teams Advance to New England Championship Finals

2023 Boys Ice Hockey Semifinal Win Over Holderness School

Two teams will represent The Frederick Gunn School in the 2023 NEPSAC Championship Finals on Sunday, March 5. Boys Varsity Basketball and Boys Varsity Ice Hockey both advanced to their respective tournament finals after winning the semifinals on Saturday.

“Please join me in congratulating the boys varsity basketball and hockey teams for tremendous semifinal wins on the road today. Two very different games — and our school’s heart, grit, and resilience were on full display in both. Great work by the players, coaches, and the athletic department,” Head of School Peter Becker said to the community via email, encouraging all Highlanders within driving distance of the finals to take a road trip on Sunday to support Gunn.

“By my estimate, our athletic teams have won six New England Championships since 2012 (and a lot more over the life of the school). All of them (and most of the playoff wins to get there) have been on the road. That’s just what we do. Highlanders are road warriors,” Becker said.

In Basketball, an Early Lead
Boys Varsity Basketball will take on #1 seed The Rivers School in the finals on Sunday at 12 p.m. at Western New England University in Springfield, Massachusetts. The Highlanders defeated #2 seed Millbrook School 83-68 in the NEPSAC Class B Boys Basketball Semifinals on Saturday.
Both teams were well matched, and the Highlanders developed a 15-point lead over Millbrook early in the first half, but at the start of the second half, the Mustangs came out strong, closing to within 1 point late in the second half. Both teams played intense defense, and continued to score, with the Highlanders sinking several shots from the free throw line and some well-timed three-pointers to hold on to the lead and retake the momentum in the final minutes of the game. Gunn parents, students, faculty, and staff,  cheered loudly from the stands, and were on their feet to celebrate the team’s historic win. This is the first time in recent school history that Boys Varsity Basketball has advanced to the playoffs. The team ended its regular season with a record of 17-7.

Live Stream Link - NEPSAC Boys Basketball Championship Finals

Hockey Wins in Sudden Death Overtime
The #3 seed Gunn Boys Varsity Hockey Team beat #2 seed Holderness School 3-2 in sudden death overtime in the NEPSAC Boys Ice Hockey Tournament Semifinals on Saturday at Holderness. Gunn will face off against #4 seed Lawrence Academy in the Piatelli/Simmons Bracket Finals on Sunday at 2:30 p.m. at St. Anselm College in Manchester, New Hampshire. 

Both Gunn and Holderness played well defensively at the start of Saturday’s semifinal game. Holderness was the first to score a goal in the second period, and followed up with a second goal at the start of the third period. Then, in the final four minutes, the Highlanders scored their first goal, and with just over a minute left, Gunn scored again to tie the game 2-2. About three minutes into overtime, the Highlanders scored their third and final goal to win the semifinals.

“It is incredible to have two teams competing for championships,” said Mike Marich P’23 ’24, Athletic Director, Head Boys Lacrosse Coach, and President, NEPSAC District IV. “I believe it is the first time since 2013-2014, when Girls Varsity Hockey and Boys Varsity Hockey played in the championships. I am so proud of the way the teams have competed, but more importantly, how well they have represented our school.  All the credit goes to the coaches, who have led their teams so well!”

Live Stream Link - NEPSAC Boys Ice Hockey Championship Finals

Photo credit: Shane Gorman '10 and Phil Dutton '81 P'23

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