Hopes are high for this winter's New Milford High School ice hockey squad.

Coach Dan Moore's Green Wave has ridden the impetus of last season's 13-7 campaign to break out to a 5-1 start.

The NMHS skaters have outscored the opposition by a cumulative 30-11 score in registering wins over Cheshire, North Branford, Westhill, Brookfield/Bethel/Danbury and Watertown/Pomperaug.

Only Hand has solved the Green Wave to date, and that by a nailbiting 2-1 score Dec. 21 at the Northford Ice Pavilion.

Moore's team is experiencing its first season in a league combining traditional opponents from the South-West Conference with those in what coach Moore termed "the very competitive" Southern Connecticut Conference.

"We are looking to be in top four for the league playoffs," said Moore this week, " and we are off to a great start."

"There are a lot of positives," he remarked.

Moore complimented the steady goaltending of Nick Capriglione, who boasted a 1.85 goals against average through six matches.

Of course, good goaltending usually goes hand in hand with tenacious defense, and Jameson Steinhardt and his blue-line compatriots have done the job with aplomb, according to their coach, himself a former defenseman.

The scoring punch has been carried by Steven Berry's 13 goals and seven assists, Cole Case's five goals and 10 assists, and Blaine McMahon's four goals and nine assists.

"We are looking for more balanced scoring," noted coach Moore.

The Green Wave faced a big match Wednesday with North Haven stopping by Canterbury School. Heading into that match, North Haven led the SWC/SCC standings at 3-0, followed by the Green Wave at 4-1.

"We're coming together," said Moore, "building toward the league and state playoffs."

The New Milford skaters will next play Trumbull Friday, Jan. 17 at 5:45 p.m. in Shelton and then host Wilton Monday at 11 a.m. at Canterbury.

For more photos, visit www.newmilfordspectrum.com.