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After Missing Time With Infection, Scanlon Back at the Helm for Wildcats

Boys hockey head coach Steve Scanlon missed a month with a foot infection.

After Missing Time With Infection, Scanlon Back at the Helm for Wildcats
Depth has been the key for the Wilmington High School boys hockey team as the Wildcats have won two straight state championships and are vying for a third. When one man goes down, another must step up.

This year, that has been the case for the Wilmington coaching staff as well.

Longtime head coach Steve Scanlon missed the final month of the regular season due to an infection in his foot. The infection required surgery, and forced Scanlon to stay off his feet and on the couch while his team was on the ice.

"Next man up. We preach that all the time with our players," said Scanlon. "We have a good staff, and I was really proud of the work those guys did while I was out."

During the month of February, Wilmington put together a 5-1-2 record while their coach was sidelined. Scanlon returned in the opening round of the postseason as the team earned a 3-2 win over Matignon. 

Then on Saturday, the Wildcats skated past Medford in double overtime, setting up a North Division 1 semifinal appearance against Arlington that is scheduled for Wednesday night at 5:10 p.m. on the ice of Chelmsford Forum.

Scanlon said that while he returned to the bench last week, he isn't fully recovered from his operation. The veteran coach is getting around on crutches, and immediately after each game and practice ends, he heads home to get off his feet and elevate the impacted foot.

The foot infection was painful for Scanlon. But watching Wilmington's playoff from afar wasn't exactly pain-free either.

"It's not fun sitting out, trying to do as much advising as you can from home," said Scanlon. "It's frustrating to not be with the kids. You feel like you let them down a bit, but what are you going to do?"

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