The Midcoast Ice Cats, a cooperative high school ice hockey team that plays out of the Midcoast Recreation Center rink in Rockport, has begun their season, which included hosting John Bapst of Bangor on Thursday, Dec. 20.

The Ice Cats are 1-2 on the young season, falling 4-1 to the Crusaders Thursday, after defeating host Brewer 3-2 Dec. 15 and falling to visiting Winslow 4-2 Dec. 6.

Click for photos from the John Bapst at Ice Cats game.

The Ice Cats include student-athletes from several Midcoast schools, including Camden Hills Regional High School, Oceanside High School of Rockland/Thomaston, Belfast Area High School, Mount View High School of Thorndike, Medomak Valley High School of Waldoboro, Morse High School of Bath and Wiscasset High School.

The team is a club program that plays against junior varsity and varsity opponents.

In the team's 4-1 loss to the Crusaders Dec. 20, Noah Klewin of Belfast scored the lone goal for the Ice Cats, while Eli Szydlo, Jackson Leonard, David Carmack and Josh Harvey tallied goals for the Crusaders.

Goalie Henry Laurita of Camden Hills made 15 saves on 19 shots for the hosts, while Sam Landes made 18 saves on 20 shots for the visitors.

Ice Cat Luke Noonan of Medomak Valley was given a game misconduct with 4:21 remaining in the first period for a hit from behind and the Crusaders used that advantage and momentum to surge to a four-goal lead.

"We took a lot of penalties in the game against John Bapst and they capitalized on all of them," said veteran Ice Cats coach Mike Schroeder.

In the Ice Cats' 3-2 win over Brewer Dec. 15, Nathan Lord of Mount View lit the lamp twice and Klewin once, while the name of the goal scorers for the Witches were unavailable.

Coach Schroeder said Laurita, a first-year goalie, "gave us a really strong effort in the Brewer game and made some key saves down the stretch to preserve the win."

Laurita made 19 saves on 21 shots in the victory.

On Dec. 6, the Ice Cats lost to Winslow 4-2, with Rory McCaffery of Medomak Valley tallying both goals against the Black Raiders, with assists from Sam Kulikowski of Belfast and Teddy Laurita of Camden Hills. The Ice Cats outshot the Black Raiders 28-6 in the loss.

"We moved the puck well through the neutral zone and along the blue line and had numerous high quality scoring opportunities," Schroeder said. "Unfortunately, we ran into a hot goaltender who didn’t give us many second chances. He played a great game. We also managed to hit the post on five occasions. Sometimes things just go that way. That’s hockey.”

The following is a synopsis of the 2012-13 Midcoast Ice Cats:

Coach/years coached current team: Mike Schroeder, fifth year.

Last year's record/playoff information: 12-7-3. The Ice Cats do not participate in varsity postseason play.

Roster: Senior Kerry Madden (defense); juniors Kenny Scheimreif (forward), Noah Klewin (forward) and Teddy Laurita (forward); sophomores Henry Laurita (goalie), Bailey McCaffery (forward), Myles Day (forward), Nathan Lord (forward, defense), Sam Kulikowski (forward), Preston Spear (defense), Luke Noonan (defense), Victor Pearce (defense) and Oliver Fenn (forward); and freshmen Rory McCaffery (forward), Jacob Haddock (forward), Gavin Day (forward), Patrick Beacham (forward), Howard Pearce (forward).

Henry Laurita, Beacham and Teddy Laurita attend Camden Hills; Spear, Oceanside; Rory McCaffery, Madden, Bailey McCaffery, Scheimreif, Noonan and Fenn, Medomak Valley; Haddock, Gavin Day and Myles Day, Morse; Lord, Mount View; Kulikowski and Klewin, Belfast; and Howard Pearce and Victoria Pearce, Wiscasset.

Outlook: The 'Cats look forward to another stellar winter on the ice under coach Schroeder, who has led the team to a 43-21-9 record  the previous four seasons.

“Heading into this year's campaign we have a strong group of returning players that I expect to step up and continue to improve as the season progresses," said the coach.

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