The Amesbury hockey team is off to its best start since 2005, and a big reason for the team’s success is the play of sophomore netminder Jake Harlow.
The 5-foot-7, 125-pound goaltender has made all eight starts for the Indians, posting a 5-1-2 record with a 1.75 goals-against average and a .914 save percentage. Last month, he was named MVP of the Haverhill Holiday Tournament’s Palm Division after he led Amesbury to a 2-1 victory over Stoneham in the championship game. Harlow made 39 saves in the win.
Harlow granted The Daily News an interview yesterday as he prepared for tonight’s showdown against rival Newburyport at Haverhill’s Twin Rinks.
Did you play at all last year as a freshman?
“I played one game and another period.”
You must have been nervous heading into this season as the starter?
“I was nervous the first game. My confidence has grown throughout the season, and now I have a lot of confidence in the team.”
Are you surprised by Amesbury’s strong start to the season?
“No, I knew we had the talent last year, and we grew as a team. I know there’s enough talent this year, we just have to work hard at practice and come out strong.”
Was there a moment during the season when you felt the team became a championship contender?
“I don’t think we’ve found that yet. We’re still an average team. We’re not above anyone. We haven’t proven ourselves. The game (tonight) will give us a chance to prove ourselves against a top team.”
What do you expect the atmosphere to be like (tonight)?
“It’s Newburport. It’s different than any other game. It’s intense, nervewracking. We’ll play harder to win. We’ll go at them harder.”
Are there moments during a hockey game when you get nervous?