The Starting Line
2009 was a year to forget in
Killingworth. Fans watched their beloved Guppies miss the playoffs in
back to back seasons. A first for this storied franchise! There seems
to be a lot more losing than winning in Guppies Nation the past few seasons.
The "Blue Mile", the scene of many Guppie Championship celebrations
in the past, seems like a ghost town these days! So, the big question
for 2010 is: Can the Guppies turn things around and swim upstream again?
A look at their roster and it's easy to see there's talent. However, it's
old and in many cases out of shape! The hope in Killingworth is this team
full of veterans can bounce back and lift this team back up to where it
belongs. The front office seems to think the guys in the locker room can
get it done, based on the fact that there were no off season moves. Let's
hope they are right. Here is a breakdown of the 2010 Killingworth Guppies:
Two players will be call upon to carry the offensive load for the 2010
Guppies. Tim Poulin (27 goals/35 points) and Keith Millen (28/45) will
have carry the load for the Gupps. Their production was strong in 2009
but, they may need to do more if the Guppies are to change their fortunes.
However, they can't do it alone! The supporting cast needs to chip in
their fair share as well. Marc Crayton (5/17) needs to recapture that
scoring magic he had in 2007 when he scored 17 goals. Secondary scoring
will determine how far the Guppies swim this season. Brian Mulcahy
(2/13) is expected to move up from Defense this season and bring more
offensive output with him. Meanwhile, Dave Armenai (2/6) will be asked
to bring his physical presence this season. If Crayton, Mulcahy,
and Armenai can increase their goal production you can bet it will lead
to the Guppies returning to the Playoffs.
There will be some shake-ups on Defense this season. Rob Murphy (11goals/31points)
will still be the Quarterback of the defensive corps and should provide
strong defense while being an offensive threat. However, Brian Kelly (20/42)
looks to be heading back to defense after spending most of 2009
on the Guppies front line. Kelly can provide offense but, can be a liability
in his own end. Just ask any Guppie's netminder! Jason Zito (8/25) is
another forward converted into a defenseman for the Guppies. Zito plays
the game much like Murphy. He has the ability to QB the play in either
the offensive and defensive zone. Jon Stevenson (10/17) plays with a lot
of fire in his game and can deliver the big time goal or the physical
presence when it's most needed. The Youngest Guppie at age 30, Stevenson
still has some speed in his legs and is capable to make a few end to end
rushes! Dan Pequita (10/31) and Brian Blair (yes, that Brian Blair!) will
be subs on the 2010 team. When they get the call they will most likely
be on the Blue line. Pequita has a huge offensive upside while Blair is
more of a defensive defenseman. The key for the Guppies defense will be
to help out the offense while not selling out the defense. Its a tight
rope act that they really haven't mastered in the past but, may be the
difference between a playoff berth and another tshirtless season.
This has been a problem position for the Guppies for the past few years!
There has been a rotating door in the Guppies net lately do to either
injuries, schedules, and business trips. The Guppie's front office hopes
to find this stability in net with Andy Pettola and Joe Linskey splitting
time between the pipes. It's a rotation they have hoped to have
for a few season now but, it hasn't worked out. Is 2010 the year when
the Guppies don't have six different goalies playing net? Having Linskey
and Pettola between the pipes seems to settle the Guppies bench,
not that some of their replacements haven't done a great job. If Linskey
and Pettola are unable to play, look for Guppie's netminder of the future
Greg Marshall to get some playing time. Marshall is a solid netminder
but, is still looking for his first Win with the Guppies.
• Spring 2009
• Summer 2009
• 2009 Record:
• Division: The Spring 2009 Guppies
finished in 7th place (3-7-0). Tied the team record for fewest wins and
most games lost in a season. Summer 09 was a little better for the fish
as they recorded 5 wins and finished in 5th place.
• Playoffs:There were no Playoffs
for Killingworth in 2009.
Goalie: Joe Linskey
Linskey posted a 4-6-0 record for the Guppies during the
2009 campaigns. His combined 6.60 GAA it the worst of his 14year career
with the Fish. Linskey seems to finally be healthy which is good news
to for everyone in "Guppie Nation"
Defenseman: Jon Stevenson
be a game changer! He's capable of scoring the "Big" goal or
delivering the "Big" hit. His game is a throw back to 1970's
hockey, which I love. Playing with a chip on his shoulder makes Stevenson
a dangerous player.
Forward: Tim Poulin
TPo is arguably
the Guppies purest goal scorer. At one point Poulin went 5 straight season's
score more than 20 goals per. Twice he reached the 29goal mark. Poulin's
issue is attendance! With him in the lineup the Guppies are by far a stronger
team. If Tim can get at least 9 games per season then he should be able
to top that 20 goal mark again.
The key to Guppies
success is the ability to do the little things. To many times last season
we saw a team that was unwilling to forecheck and backcheck. To many odd
man rushes put to much pressure on Guppie netminders. The need to do more
of the little things to win games.
much talent on this roster for the Guppies not to make the playoffs in
2010. I believe the Gupps might struggle in the Spring season, as they
adjust to playing again, but they will make the playoffs. A more confident
team will make a championship run during the 2010 Summer season.