Firehawks’ Murphy reaches 100 goals
The Midwest Junior Hockey League scoring machine known as Nick Murphy hit the century mark in goals for his league career Feb. 23 and then added another for good measure in the Soo Firehawks 9-0 win over the Alpena Street Cats.
Murphy made it 2-0 with a goal at 12:44 of the first period and, after a scoreless second period, he made it 3-0 just 1:05 into the third frame and that opened the flood gates for six more Firehawks goals before a home crowd at Big Bear Arena.
Murphy, 20, of Waterford, has played both seasons in the MWJHL with the Firehawks.
In his first season he had 56 goals and 48 assists in 41 games for 104 points. Following the two goal, one assist game Feb. 23, Murphy boosted this season's scoring stats to 45 goals and 40 assists for 85 points in 33 games.
”Getting my 100th goal in a Firehawk jersey was a great feeling,” Murphy said on the Soo website. “Knowing I've only played 74 games the past two seasons and getting not only 101 goals, but 190 points is a great feeling.”
Murphy is hoping his offensive numbers help him continue playing next fall.
“I plan to play college next year, hopefully, but overall, I plan on making the best decision for me personally,” Murphy said. “I've led the league in goals and points the past two seasons and it's great. I owe a great deal to my coaches, who have helped me get to the next level and also my trainer, Phil Woolcocks, who I live with and who pushes me to be the best I can be. It's hard work to consistently be at the top, but I feel with the help that I have from not only from the Firehawk staff, but from my teammates, they help make it a lot easier.”
Soo head coach Joe Esson has been impressed with Murphy the past two years.
“Nick is a great role player and his role is to put the puck in the net and obviously, he plays his role,” Esson said. “He has scored some of the nicest goals I've ever seen and a lot of them at crucial parts of the game. He's a great guy to have around on and off the ice. His two years as a Firehawk have been special, to say the least. Right now, he's still deciding what to do next year, but he is looking to continue his hockey career at a higher level. I think we are a lucky program to have had him for two seasons."
But Murphy still has five games left in the regular season to add to his league-leading scoring totals.
“It's no surprise to me he scored as much as he did and I think a few NAHL teams missed out on a serious goal-scorer," added Esson. "I know Nick has full intentions of continuing what he is doing right into the playoffs.”