Using computer skills he learned in a graphic design class at the private school in South Hamilton, Leahy sketched out new leg pads that blend into the goal netting behind him. He wanted pads, a trapper, and a blocker that are white with a raised double-stitched design, just like the goal. He applied for a design patent and had them custom-made by a Canada-based pad maker.Apparently they had trouble figuring out how effective the pads have really been, but even if it makes a difference only a small fraction of the time, that's still an advantage. Pretty good idea.
"When the shooter comes down and only has a split second to shoot the puck, they're looking for net," said Leahy, a senior from Hampton, N.H., who grew up in Byfield. "If you put the net on the pad, they'll shoot at the pad instead of the goal."