RED BANK — On a Saturday morning tilt at the Red Bank Armory, Chris Repmann was awarded a Clam Hat.
The description of this particular piece of head gear is self explanatory, as observed when the Red Bank Generals standout emerged from the celebration inside his club’s locker room with an oversized, cotton-stuffed mollusk affixed to his mop-top.
Much like the Rangers’ coveted ‘Broadway Hat,’ the Generals’ ‘Clam Hat’ is bestowed upon the team’s standout performer following a victory, and Repmann was certainly that on Oct. 14 when his 16U AA outfit dismissed an NJYHL Southern Division foe in the Hollydell Hurricanes by a 10-0 decision.
Generals Clinch a Playoff Spot
Repmann led the way in this late-season rout — a win that clinched second place and a playoff spot for Red Bank — with a four goal performance, including a first period tally of the highlight reel variety, in which the winger raced down the right side, dragged the puck past an opposing defender and beat the keeper over the glove on the backhand to make it a 2-0 Generals advantage.
“It feels great to get the clam hat, it’s my first one of the season,” said Repmann, who went on to rifle home a pair of wrist shots in the second period, before opening the scoring in the final frame, when he accepted a pass across the crease from Jack Monahan and fired into the short-side twine.
“It’s a good win for the team because it helped us get into the playoffs, and it feels good to come out and be a big part of it with four goals,” added Repmann, a Middletown native.
A Glimpse of What’s to Come for Middletown North?
Looking at Repmann’s stat sheet, it’s hard to believe this was the first time all year he’d been awarded the piece of celebratory sea life, as the 2002-born forward led the Generals in regular season point-production with 28, including a club-best 17 goals and 11 assists.
It’s the type of performance that has Middletown North coach Matt Clemente eager to see Repmann back in the black and orange.
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“He really had a nice year for us a freshman, and was playing a top six forward position for much of the year,” said Clemente, who will enter his seventh season at the helm of the Lions program, and helped High School North to its third consecutive Public B State Semifinals appearance a season ago.
“Playing for a team that made a deep run in the state playoffs; skating in some highly stressful situations; Chris gained a lot of valuable varsity experience last year, and we’re looking forward to seeing what he can do with another year of growth and development under his belt.”
Traits of an All-Time Lions Great
Repmann did not compete at the travel level prior to entering his first high school stint, a reason Clemente believes it took the winger some time to get acclimated to the varsity game. But with a skillset proving dominant against NJYHL competition and a poised demeanor, the High School North head man admits that he sees some similarities to that of an all-time great at Middletown North.
“Between their personality and skill level, they definitely share some traits,” Clemente said, likening Repmann to Lions alum John Dinnocenzo (2014-2017), who in his four-year varsity career contributed to more playoff victories (18) than any player in program history, and closed out his tenure with 39 points (21g, 18a) in his senior campaign. “Chris actually shared a line with [Dinnocenzo] last year for a while, so he got to learn a lot by skating alongside him. A big thing that stood out about John, he was an incredibly hard worker who gave you his best on and off the ice. And what I see from Chris is that same willingness to put in the work and get better.”
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Repmann registered six points for the Lions as a freshman in 2016-17 with four markers and two helpers, including his first career multi-goal game in a 6-4 victory over Class A North rival Howell (Feb. 17), a meeting in which he delivered the eventual game-winner in the third period.