The first version of the 2020 Super 8 “Watch List” is officially here and I am ready to break it down with what I think. The list only has 12 teams, which surprises me with so much parity this year in division 1 play. Let’s take a look at all the teams, who I think was left off of the list, and who I think the 10 teams will be come March.
Arlington: 0-1-1 against other watch list teams. With only one loss on the season, Arlington might be headed towards the top of the weekly rankings. Consistency is something that top teams in the state have struggled with all season, but Arlington has stayed strong as they enter the toughest part of their schedule.
Austin Prep: 3-3-1 against other watch list teams. With 5 losses, it might be tough for Austin Prep to get into the Super 8 dance as a seed higher than 7, which means they will have to either battle in a play-in game or in the D1 north tournament. Their strength of schedule is top notch, but they are going to have to avoid more losses rounding out their season.
BC High: 6-3-1 against other watch list teams. The Eagles are not clearly the top team in the state like past years, but they are still showing everyone they are a Super 8 team. They have a crazy number of wins against other watch list teams, training them for another playoff run.
Canton: Canton has played no games against other watch list teams. While Canton went undefeated last season and did not get a bid into the Super 8, this year might be different. They revamped their schedule, playing top teams in the state such as reigning D1 champ Duxbury and D1 south power Braintree. If they go undefeated AGAIN this year, I would have a hard time keeping them out of the Super 8.
Catholic Memorial: 3-2-3 against other watch list teams. Every time that it feels like CM is falling out of Super 8 contention, they bounce back in with a good win. They play a tough schedule and are coming off of a win over top ranked Xaverian. Their Super 8 chances are going to come down their last quarter of the season.
Central Catholic: 3-3-0 against other watch list teams. I was surprised to see Central Catholic on the initial watch list, but diving into their record so far, they have some pretty impressive wins. They are being weighed down by a few bad losses, but they can try to sneak into the Super 8 with a good end to their season.
Framingham: 1-2-1 against other watch list team. Framingham is already at 11 wins and is a perfect 10-0-0 in league play. They are a team that is built around their solid goaltending and should have a good shot at the Super 8.
Hingham: 2-2-3 against other watch list teams. For a stretch this season it looked like Hingham would be on the outside of the Super 8, but their strength of schedule allowed them to gain the good wins and ties to have them on the initial watch list. They are 4-0-3 in their past 7 games and are fresh off of a win over Pope Francis.
Pope Francis: 3-4-1 against other watch list teams. The Cardinals struggled to start the year and really did not start to climb back up the rankings until the start of the new year. They have 3 wins against watch list teams and still have plenty of tough games left to prove they still belong in the Super 8.
St. John’s Prep: 5-3-2 against other watch list teams. The Eagles have been very hard to rank this year, as they have some awesome wins (two against Xaverian) and some bad losses (9-1 loss to start the year to Hingham.) They have compiled a solid resume of wins, which should be good enough for a Super 8 appearance as long as they limit their losses as they round out their season.
St. Mary’s Lynn: 1-2-1 against other watch list teams. For awhile, it looked like St. Mary’s was going to be the top team in the state. They have slowed down since the start of the season, but still have one of the best records in the D1 North.
Xaverian: 3-4-3 against other watch list teams. Xaverian looked like they were the top team in the state, until they are 0-2-1 in their past three games. They are still one of the top teams in the state and their schedule avoids any of the Catholic Conference teams for the rest of the way.
Who was left off the list with a shot at the Super 8?
Duxbury: 0-2-1 against the watch list teams. The Dragons are coming off of a D1 state title from last year and had high expectations this year. They only have three losses, two of which are to watch list teams and the other loss is to Plymouth North, who is having a dominant year. Playing in the Buddy Ferreira Classic to end the year will still give hope to Duxbury’s Super 8 chances.
Burlington: 1-1 against teams featured on the watch list. Burlington had the crazy 10 game winning streak after their first game. Since then they have cooled off, but with their record, they still have a shot at the Super 8.
Reading: 0-2-2 against teams featured on the watch list. Reading is always a factor in Super 8 discussion based off of their tough schedule. They also play in the Buddy Ferreira Classic to end the year, which can have big implications on their Super 8 hopes.
Shrewsbury: 1-0-1 against teams featured on the watch list. Definitely a wild card, but Shrewsbury is quietly having an awesome season in the D1 North. They already have 10 wins and hold a big win over Framingham. They do not face any more watch list teams this year, so they would have to win out to have any shot at sneaking in.
Natick: 0-1-0 against watch list teams, but 1-0-1 against teams I have on here that are not featured. With a record of 10-2-3, Natick is having an awesome year. They do not play the hardest schedule, but they are quietly adding to their win total as the season goes on.
Barnstable: 0-1-0 against watch list teams. Barnstable is having a good year with a record of 9-3-2. They play a tough schedule for a team in the Cape and Islands league. Their shot at a Super 8 birth is slim, but definitely a possibility.
St. John’s (S): 2-4-2 against teams on the watch list. St. John’s of Shrewsbury does not have the best record, but they have played well against the top in the state. They have a small shot at the Super 8, as they still have Xaverian and Catholic Memorial left on their schedule to make their mark.
My Super 8 Predictions:
1. BC High
3. St. John’s Prep
5. Catholic Memorial
6. Pope Francis
8. St. Mary’s Lynn