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Athlete of the Week: Belchertown’s Kyle Greene

BELCHERTOWN, Mass. — This time last season, Belchertown hockey and Western Mass powerhouse were far from synonymous. After a one-win season in 2013, the only way the team could go is up. How far up would that be? How about a nine-win season and a playoff berth Thursday against Chicopee Comp? Amazingly, it has been on the back of freshman goalie Kyle Greene who has created some stability in the net.

“I was pretty happy. I felt bad for the other goalie but I was really happy that I got to start,” Greene said.

“We’re doing pretty good this year. It’s been a lot better than last year. I obviously didn’t play last year but we had one win so we’re doing a lot better than last year. We got a strong team.”

To create an even more far-fetched storyline, Greene, like many position players, came into the season with uncertainty as to whether he would regularly see the ice. While the nerves where there, it ultimately became a smooth transition to reach the level he is at now

“I do feel pressure because I’m a freshman and you obviously don’t want to make any mistakes. You’re the last line of defense but I feel pretty good,” Greene said, “I still feel pressure every game but it’s less than it was.”

Greene is no’t the only rookie in a big spot as it’s also Matt Crutch’s first year as head coach. After being dealt a less than favorable hand, Crutch sees the turnaround as a testament to the team’s hard work and leadership.

“The first couple weeks you could really see Kyle Greene taking a step up. We started him the first game and he played absolutely phenomenal and we’ve just rode that since,” Crutch said.

“We have a couple good seniors who made the guys feel together and really made them feel a part of the team so he’s been great like that.

Now the focus turns to tonight’s contest against Chicopee Comp, a game that holds a tremendous emotional impact.

“We just gotta come and show up to play. As long as we show up to play and play defense first we can definitely come away with the win,” Greene said.

And with the composed youngster in net, the possibility to shock the world is certainly realistic.


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