This Time, It's DCC in Division 1

March 8, 2014

By Geoff Kimmerly
Second Half editor 

PLYMOUTH – Detroit Catholic Central had one way in mind it hoped to finish this season’s MHSAA Hockey Finals at Compuware Arena. 

And the Shamrocks had one opponent in mind to end against.

DCC wanted a rematch with Brighton, the two-time Division 1 champion and opponent that kept the Shamrocks from the title a year ago.

They got their wish – and their first MHSAA title since 2010 – with a 5-1 win over the Bulldogs in Saturday’s final championship game.

“We came in and we wanted to play Brighton,” DCC senior defenseman Carter Cerretani said. “We know we didn’t have the biggest team. But we definitely had the fastest, and we had to utilize that speed. Going in, we knew the crowd was going to be big. But we had to act like it was any normal game.”

Detroit Catholic Central (24-7) already had beaten Brighton once this season, 4-3 in the former’s second game and the latter’s opener this winter.

But the Shamrocks wanted a rematch where it counted most after falling 2-1 in the 2013 Final.

They dominated at the start, with junior Ryan Burnett and then Cerretani (off a Burnett assist) both scoring during the game’s first five minutes. Then DCC dominated on the check, frustrating the Bulldogs’ offense and allowing only 19 shots after giving up exactly twice that many in last season’s championship game.

“We had a handful of boys in the locker room who remembered that feeling,” said first-year DCC coach Doug Itami, who formerly served as an assistant. “We had a purpose.”

And the Shamrocks also capitalized when Brighton provided opportunities, scoring three power play goals and a fourth into an empty net with 2:32 to play. One of those power play goals came with a 5-on-3 advantage and another came just after another 5-on-3 ran out but before the Bulldogs had killed the second penalty. 

Still, Brighton did have hope after senior Danny Bosio scored off a rebound on a power play 5:48 into the second period to make the score 2-1. The Bulldogs also had trailed Detroit U-D Jesuit 2-0 in the Semifinal before coming back to win 4-3 in overtime.

“We love to go down 2-nothing and then come back,” said Brighton coach Paul Moggach, tongue-in-cheek. “We’ve got the same attitude that we can come back. When we got that first goal, we thought we had momentum. But we didn’t sustain it the way we needed to.” 

Senior Domenic Mancinelli put DCC up 3-1 with five minutes left in the second period, and then Cerretani and Burnett both added their second goals of the game to round out the scoring in the third.

Junior Mitch Ossowski assisted on three of the Shamrocks’ goals, and junior Spencer Wright allowed just the one, with 17 saves in goal. In a touching moment at the end, the trophy was presented on the ice to senior Matt Sorisho, a standout on last season’s team who was paralyzed from the waist down during a travel league game this fall. 

Junior goalie Jimmy Milletics, another star of the 2013 Final, made 27 saves for the Bulldogs, who finished 23-7-1 but graduate a strong group of nine seniors who have played big parts over the last two seasons.

“It’s a loss in the biggest game of the season, and it’s not fun losing like that,” Brighton senior Aaron Sturos said. “Just being on this team, this is a heck of a team. We’re all really close, having fun out there, so it will be tough to leave.”

Click for a full box score.

PHOTOS: (Top) Detroit Catholic Central celebrates one of its five goals Saturday in the Division 1 Final. (Middle) DCC athletic director Aaron Babicz presents the championship trophy to senior Matt Sorisho (18).

HIGHLIGHTS: (1) DCC’s Ryan Burnett gets the first goal of the Division 1 Final at the 3:54 mark of the opening period. (2) With a two-man advantage on a power play, Detroit Catholic Central gets its second goal of the finale from Carter Cerretani. (3) The Bulldogs got their only goal on the power play at the 5:48 mark of the second period from Danny Bosio. (4) About 6 minutes later, DCC counters with another power play goal by Domenic Mancinelli to take a 3-1 lead.

Hockey Players Transferring Winter Puck Skills to Spring Golf Swings

By Tom Lang
Special for

May 26, 2023

When the Michigan seasons shift from winter to spring, some high school golf teams are a little more eager than others for the hockey season to officially end.

This is especially true for the school golf programs in Brighton, Hartland and Muskegon Mona Shores – examples of boys teams that love having hockey players transition from the indoor frozen ice to play golf outdoors on the lush green grass.

“I would take a golf team full of hockey players any day,” said Hartland golf coach Nathan Oake. “I love them.”

We can tell, because his program is full of them.

Hartland and Brighton each have eight hockey players on their 16-golfer varsity and JV rosters.

Mona Shores has three hockey players this year, but usually has more. In 2023 it’s Oliver MacDonald (all-state honorable mention in hockey), Nathan McNarland and Nicholas Taylor, who was voted Division 1 all-state golf last spring, then leading his team to fifth place at the MHSAA Lower Peninsula Division 1 Final.

Hartland’s Ian Kastamo (16) takes a faceoff against Brighton this winter. Brighton golfer Winston Lerch was also Division 1 all-state last year in golf and an assistant captain on the hockey team this winter that finished Division 1 runner-up to Detroit Catholic Central. Here in 2023, he shot a 65 to open the season at Oakland University for medalist and has committed to Grand Valley State for golf with his 72-stroke average.

Joining Lerch in the Bulldogs boys golf program are hockey players like Levi Pennala, winner of hockey’s Wall Award sponsored by State Champs as the top high school goalie. Pennala – who recently shot 72 at the Kensington Lakes Activities Association championship tournament, his career low for high school golf – finished in the top 30 last year at the LPD1 Final. Then early this spring when he was away at a high-level junior hockey tournament, freshman hockey player Adam Forcier stepped in and shot a school record 18-hole round for a freshman at 73. Jacob Daavetilla also works into the starting lineup at times.

Forcier tied the record of Davis Codd – who, as a pro hockey player on leave from the Saginaw Spirit OHL hockey team when COVID-19 shut down the league, won the LPD1 Final in 2021 for Brighton.

Brighton golf coach Jimmy Dewling said Codd was one of the earliest to prove to others you can play both hockey and golf and excel. In fact, that June in 2021, Codd went to an NHL scouting camp in Pennsylvania before the Golf Finals, drove overnight back to Forest Akers to play the two championship rounds, won the title, then immediately returned to Pennsylvania to resume the hockey camp.

“On our team, we believe, and TBone (Codd) was a perfect example of it, if there’s any time you have the opportunity to be competitive, it is going to make you a more well-rounded competitor and therefore better at your particular sport,” Dewling said.

“We like hockey players. In the winter, they have to think to where the puck is going, be smart enough to react, and understand how that emotion is going to carry over from one play to the next. When it’s your shift you have to forget about the last shift, or take something from the last shift and put it into the next shift, to have consistent play.

“It’s the same on the golf course,” Dewling continued. “It’s one hole to the next, one shot at a time, being tough, and that’s only going to come from competition reps. We love the athletic ability more so than anything; the toughness and competitiveness all year.”

In addition to Lerch and Pennala starting on varsity golf, they are joined by traditional golfers Matt Doyle, Riley Morton and Andrew Daily, who is committed to Wayne State and finished LPD1 runner-up last spring.

Mona Shores’ Nicholas Taylor fires an iron shot. Going into the 2023 golf postseason, Brighton is ranked No. 2 in Division 1. The Bulldogs have won the Next Tee Invite at Oakland Hills, the North Star Invite at Plum Hollow and the KLAA Conference Championship – earning Brighton’s first conference title since 2007. The Bulldogs also were runners-up at The Meadows Invite at Grand Valley State University. The team is averaging 297 for 18 holes.

Oake admitted this is a rebuilding year for Hartland’s golf program. The varsity lineup has only two returning players with varsity golf experience – Keller King and Brady Betteley.

“So, we opted to keep a group of tough competitors with a solid combination of speed and strength – and who are not concerned about the cold conditions that we play in,” Oake quipped.

Five others rotate into the Eagles’ golf starting lineup with King and Betteley: Isaac Frantti is an all-state hockey defensemen playing his first season of golf but shot a career-low 79 at American Dunes recently. He just signed a United State Premier Hockey League tender to play in Connecticut next year. Ian Kastamo scored the winning goal in Hartland’s Division 2 hockey championship victory in 2022, and LJ Sabala is a varsity hockey player as well.

Then there are two non-hockey freshmen getting shots to start occasionally – Dallas Korponic, who finished third at his weight at the Individual Wrestling Finals, and Michael Maurin. Five more sophomores and juniors are hockey players on the JV golf team.

We hope to be competitive with (Brighton) again soon, but they have the talent to make a big splash this year,” Oake said. “I also play golf at the same club as many Brighton players, so I see them quite a bit and we are friendly. When the Brighton team walked by our team on a recent Monday and all said hello to me and our guys, one of my players looked at me and said that this was the biggest difference between hockey and golf. In hockey, the small talk would be (traded) for the ice, and it would not be very nice out there.

“Either way, I believe both sports are filled with fierce competitors and respect, but when the game is over a handshake and a golf hat tip are offered to the victor.”

This story was updated and reposted with permission of

PHOTOS (Top) Brighton takes a team photo after finishing third at last season’s LPD1 Final, and all five golfers are back this season including hockey players Levi Pennala (second from left) and Winston Lerch (second from right.) (Middle) Hartland’s Ian Kastamo (16) takes a faceoff against Brighton this winter. (Below) Mona Shores’ Nicholas Taylor fires an iron shot. (Photos courtesy of High School Sports Scene, Sapshots Photography and Mona Shores’ athletic department, respectively.)