Eric Murano, coach of the Whitefish Bay, Nicolet, Shorewood Storm co-op boys hockey team said the squad has gone through some serious coaching changes recently that slowed the start of the current season.
Safe to say, the Storm has made the proper adjustments as it swept to the title in the grueling, round-robin, three-games-in-three-days North Shore Conference Tournament at the Ozaukee Ice Arena, Jan. 5-7. They downed defending league champion Homestead, 1-0, on Jan. 5; Cedarburg, 5-2, on Jan. 6; and Germantown, 6-1, on Jan. 7.
"We have a new coaching staff that have never coached with one another, which would attribute to a very slow start," Murano said. "We currently have a 7-6-2 (overall) record. We have played better as of late where we are 6-1 in our last seven games. We also played three of the top 10 teams in the state in our first 10 games, which posed a few problems for us early in the season.
"We hope to improve against better competition as the season continues to progress."
WNS, which still has an NSC game against the Germantown co-op on Jan. 31, has an overall league record of 3-2, while Homestead sits at 4-1.
They are in the midst of a hectic three-game week that will conclude with a game at Waunakee on Saturday, Jan. 14.
In the three-game NSC tournament, the Storm showed a lot of resiliency.
In the first game against Homestead, Dominic Murano got the only goal at the 11:18 mark of the third period with help from Conner Aguilar. Keeper Robert Ali, who made 28 saves on the night, fought off three power-play situations for the Highlanders.
In the victory over Cedarburg, the Storm fell behind, 2-0, in the first period but then fought back for the victory, as John Nelsen had two goals and Aguilar, Murano and Milo Hines one score each. Dominic Murano, George Sullivan (2), Nelsen and Kyle Asman all had had assists.
No details were available for the win over the Germantown co-op.