By Mike Dougherty
There’s a long line of capable goaltenders in the state that want to be Anton Zock for a day.
After spending last season in a platoon with Gabe Harousseau, the senior watched a majority of Scarsdale’s playoff run from the bench.
The Raiders decided to ride the hot hand.
“I was feeling kind of helpless,” Zock said. “I really wanted to be out there contributing. Sitting on the bench for a historic moment in program history was not fun. This season, I wanted to do more and make a difference.”
Zock only sits between shifts now.
Harousseau is back in goal this season, playing stronger than ever. Zock is skating out and scoring goals, making a contribution with 12 goals and nine assists.
The move helped make Scarsdale a deeper team, and the Raiders went on to win a second consecutive Section1 title earlier this week. Next is a trip upstate to play Massena on Saturday with a berth to the NYSPHSAA semifinals in Utica on the line.
“Both of them are good in net,” head coach Jim Mancuso said. “Both of them can skate out. We opened camp with three goalies, so I told Anton, ‘Take off the pads, let’s see what you’ve got.’ ”
Zock was a forward at the modified level at Scarsdale, but he left for prep school and spent the next two seasons playing goalie for Avon Old Farms. He began to play up front again in the fall, hoping for an opportunity, and took advantage of the audition.
He’s currently on the second line with Sam Stemerman and Duncan Hindmarch.
“Anton was a forward on modified, and that was a good team, but he’s been a goalie most of his life,” Harousseau said. “To do what he’s done this season not only shows what kind of a hockey player he is, it shows how much he cares about this team and how much he cares about winning.”
He also got a chance to roll with James Nicholas and Devon Schell on the first line for a couple of weeks.
“They are both very fast and very talented,” Zock said. “It was hard to keep up, but they are so good they make whoever is skating with them look good.”
Harousseau is happier now, too.
“The platoon worked out, I guess, and we did push each other, playing every other game,” he said. “We both helped the team out, and while it was probably beneficial to both of us, it was not exactly fun for either of us. Me and Anton have been friends a long time, and we tried not to let it get in the way, but at the same time we’re both competitive, we both wanted to be out there.”
It’s much easier to stay in a rhythm this season.
Harousseau no longer plays travel. He doesn’t go to goalie camp in the summer. He concentrates on soccer in the fall. Even so, the senior is much improved between the pipes and has only given up 34 goals in 23 games so far.
“Gabe works a lot on his own,” Mancuso said. “He is a very athletic soccer player and it translates to hockey. I think he’s even made a couple of saves using his head.”
Harousseau believes the Raiders’ defensemen deserve much of the credit for shutting down breakaways and clearing out rebounds. Michael Roberts, David Muller, Will Bock and Robert Kramer have at times been overlooked.
“I feel like those guys have been helping me out all season,” Harousseau said. “The goalie stats reflect the kind of team defense we play, the forwards, too. I have a lot of faith in those guys. They do a great job in front of me, and I try to bail them out if they slip.”