LYNN — Positive sportsmanship has always meant a lot to Classical senior Mike Clougherty. For his efforts in displaying good sportsmanship on the ice as a center for the Lynn Jets hockey team, Clougherty was chosen as one of the recipients of the Boston Bruins MIAA Sportsmanship Award.
For the past 15 years, the MIAA and Bruins have partnered to honor one student-athlete from each boys and girls high school ice hockey league in the state for best demonstrating a commitment to the ideals of sportsmanship in their conduct on and off the ice. Clougherty was selected as the recipient of the award from the Northeastern Conference.
“Obviously it meant a lot to be respected from my peers, coaches and fellow competitors,” Clougherty, who captained the Jets, said. “At the same time, it’s easy to be a good sport when you’re surrounded by a great coaching staff, great teammates and a great family. I have to give a lot of credit to my parents. They raised me right and taught me to be a good sport, no matter the outcome.
Clougherty added, “It’s easy to just say ‘me, me, me.’ I really believe that I wouldn’t be here without the guidance of my coaches, my teammates and my family for sure.”
He received the award on March 19, when he was invited to attend a game at TD Garden between the Bruins and Columbus Blue Jackets. The Bruins fell on the wrong end of an overtime thriller in a 5-4 loss.
Clougherty and other award recipients were honored during the second intermission. Another perk Clougherty received was the opportunity to meet and take a photo with Bruins legend Cam Neely.
“It was cool. He came in and congratulated us for winning the award,” Clougherty said. “Only a handful of players get selected to win the award. He’s a big guy with a very firm handshake. I took a nice picture with him. It was a nice experience.”
Winning the sportsmanship award, Clougherty added, was an ideal ending to his high school hockey career. The Jets, with help from Clougherty and his younger brother Brian, reached the semifinal round of the Division 3 North state tournament. Along the way, Lynn avenged 2016-2017’s state tournament loss to Latin Academy and solidified itself as a strong team in the NEC.
“It was a tough ending but looking back on the season, we were spoiled,” Clougherty said. “We had Jack Gallant step in and solidify our goalie situation. We played with a chip on our shoulder and proved people wrong all season. All of our guys agree with that. All in all, it was a terrific season. It was hockey heaven for sure.”
With the spring season on the horizon, Clougherty now turns the page towards gearing up for his senior lacrosse campaign. Clougherty, a midfielder, feels the Jets are in a good position to have a solid lacrosse season.
“I think we have a real solid team coming back,” Clougherty said. “We lost some great players from last season in Jack Stafford and Ryan Clark. We have a lot of great players coming back. I think we’ll have a really good year. A lot of guys have been putting in a lot of hard work. The first week has gone pretty well.
“For the first week we look pretty good,” Clougherty added. “I don’t want to toot our horn too much. Most of the hockey guys that are on the lacrosse team haven’t had too much time. We were able to scrimmage Wednesday night. We have a hard work mentality. I’m looking forward to the season and I think we can do some damage this year.”