MacDonald NEC Champ in Hurdles

May 25, 2012
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Revere High star hurdler Racquel MacDonald claimed the title of Northeastern Conference champion in the 100 meter high hurdles Saturday at the All-NEC Meet held at Manning Field in Lynn.

Racquel left little doubt that she was the best in the NEC, cruising to the top qualifying time of 16.15 seconds (almost .50 faster than her nearest rival) in the preliminary heats and then winning the finals in the field of eight in 16.28, with her closest opponent coming in at 16:43.

Teammate Comfort Toglan also earned a ribbon at the meet for the Lady Patriots, coming home in sixth place with a clocking of 28.26 in the 200 dash. The Revere 4 x 400 quartet  earned a sixth place ribbon with a run of 4:45.60.

Lady Patriots who turned in some nice performances included Caitlyn Caramello with a tie for eighth spot in the high jump with a leap of 4-8 (Caitlyn also finished 13th in the mile in 6:30); Nikki Nelson with a 10th place finish in the mile in 5:58; and Alanna Pasco with a 10th in the 800 in 2:47.40.

RHS boys tennis team clinches tourney berth

The Revere High boys tennis team enjoyed a successful week, winning three of its four matches to improve to 8-6 and clinching a berth in the post season MIAA State Tournament. The Patriots have only two matches left in the regular season and thus are assured of the needed .500 record to punch a ticket for a Journey to the Tourney.

“This team has a lot to be proud of,” said RHS head coach Mike Flynn. “They’ve worked hard and improved as the season has progressed. They deserve to be in the tournament.”

The tourney clinching match came last Wednesday at Winthrop, a 4-1 triumph despite the Patriots being shorthanded, requiring Flynn to juggle his lineup a bit.

Nick Tran won his match at first singles, 6-3, 7-5 and Nick Mucci triumphed at third singles over his Winthrop counterpart, 6-3, 6-0. Revere also won the contest at second singles thanks to Sela Leng, who stepped up to fill in for the Pats’ regular second singles performer, Mladen Pepic.

“Sela really came through for us,” noted Flynn of Leng’s 6-3, 6-2 triumph. “He has played doubles for us all season, but he stepped up when we needed him and played an outstanding match.”

The second doubles tandem of Ryan Tran and William Truong swept their Winthrop foes in straight sets, 6-3, 6-3. The lone setback came at first doubles, where the duo of Soun Lee and  Duong Nguyen lost for one of the few times this season, 5-7, 2-6.

Flynn’s squad set the table for the tourney clincher with triumphs earlier in the week against Salem, 4-1, and Lynn Classical, 3-1. The Salem match was a resumption of a postponement two weeks earlier when the rains came and once again the teams barely got the match finished before the rain started coming down.

Winners for Revere were Pepic at second singles, 7-5, 6-1; Mucci at third singles, 6-1, 6 3; Lee/Nguyen at first doubles, 6-0, 6-4; and Ryan Tran/Truong at second doubles, 6-2, 6-1.

Nick Tran battled his Salem rival at first singles to a near standoff, but came out on the short end in two tiebreaker sets, 6-7 (3-7), 6-7 (7-9).

The 3-1 win over Classical was a gritty affair which also was completed just as the skies opened up. Powering Revere to the victory were Pepic, 6-3, 6-1; Mucci, 6-4, 6-4; and Lee/Duong, 6-3, 2-6, 7-5. Ryan Tran/Truong fell in two close sets, 4-6, 4-6, while Nick Tran’s match at first singles was halted when the rains came at a 1-1 deadlock, 6-3, 5-7. However, with the outcome of the match already decided in Revere’s favor, it is unlikely that they will resume play.

The lone setback of the week came at the hands of perennial Northeastern Conference power Marblehead. However, despite the 4-1 loss, Flynn was pleased with his team’s effort. “We won a point against Marblehead for the first time in a long time,” said Flynn, referring to the three set battle won by Pepic at second singles, 6-3, 6-7 (4-7), 6-4. “Mladen played a great match against a quality opponent. Our first doubles team of Soun Lee and Duong Nguyen took their Marblehead opponents to three sets, 6-7 (4-7), 6-2, 3-6,in a match that lasted almost three hours. All in all, it probably was our best effort ever against a Marblehead team.”

Flynn also lauded the effort of the duo of Sinarath Kong and William Truong at third doubles.

Flynn and his crew were set to close out the season with matches this past Monday at Danvers and today (Wednesday) at Classical. They then will await the announcement of their seeding and first round pairing in the state tourney, which is expected to be made in the middle of next week.

Girls tennis team  shuts out Winthrop

The Revere High girls tennis team netted its third win of the season with a convincing 5-0 victory over Winthrop in which the Lady Patriots lost only three games in the five matches that were played. For those of you who are counting, that works out to an amazing 60-3 advantage in games for the Revere squad.

Kristina DiFabio led the rout with a 6-0, 6-0 win at first singles. Sara Grujic was a 6-1, 6-0 winner at second singles and Mounia El-Arar was a shutout victor at third singles, 6-0, 6-0.

The first doubles tandem of Sam Harris and Mariah Rivera cruised to a 6-0, 6-0 win and the second doubles team of Nancy Nguyen and Evelyn Bonilla, who was playing in her first varsity match, had an easy time, 6-1, 6-1, over their Winthrop counterparts.

“Everybody played very well,” said RHS head coach Carla Maniscalco. “Evelyn did a nice job for us in her first varsity appearance.

In a  4-1 loss to Lynn English last Wednesday, Nguyen and Rivera teamed at second doubles to earn a 6-2, 6-1 victory. However, the match was much closer than the final 4-1 score might indicate. The first doubles duo of Harris and Venous Hamza dropped their match in a hard fought three sets, 1-6, 6-3, 5-7, as did Sara Grujic at second singles,         2-6, 6-2, 3-6.

The Lady Patriots were set to close out their season this week, starting this past Monday at Salem; today (Wednesday) at Medford; and tomorrow at Winthrop.

Colon sets new RHS mark in 400 hurdles 

Devin Colon set a new Revere High School record in the 400 hurdles with a time of 58.82 seconds, topping the former mark of 59.6 set by teammate Karim Sahila the previous week. Colon’s performance came at Saturday’s Northeastern Conference All-League Meet held at the Manning Bowl in Lynn.

Devin’s record-setting hurdling run qualified him for the upcoming Division 1 State Meet this weekend and earned him a third place ribbon at the NEC meet. Colon enjoyed an outstanding NEC meet, taking third in the long jump with a leap of 20 feet, seven inches, a distance that also qualified him for the state meet in that event. In addition, he ran the opening leg for the 4 x 400 relay quartet that brought home a second place ribbon in a time of 3:41.08.

Another highlight of the NEC meet was the performance of the 4 x 100 relay team of Johnny Lopes, Jeff Simbert, Younes Hartout, and Ricardo Maldonado.  Their time of 44.57 was just .02 off of the school record set a week ago by the foursome of Johnny, Devin Colon, Younes, and Ricardo. They too, earned a second place ribbon for their fine performance.

“The 4 x 100 team continues to run great as they have all year,” said RHS head coach Sam Ros. “I know they can run even faster if they have better hand offs.  The hand offs are great, but not flawless.  There are minor inconsistencies and slow downs that we can fix to help them go even faster.”

The 4 x 400 team that earned second place consisted of Colon, Michael Fitzpatrick, Karim Sahila, and Rawlings Toglan.

Sahila, who saw his 400 hurdles record fall to Colon, had some bad luck in that event at the NEC Meet. “Karim ran the 400 meter hurdles, but fell victim to starter error,” said Ros. “Karim was seeded in lane 1. The starter was halfway around the turn standing by lane 8.  On set, Karim did not hear the starter and the starter did not make sure he was set.  The gun went off with Karim still on the ground.  The starter should have called the race back but didn’t.  Unfortunately for Karim, the race started without him and he tried to play catch up but everyone had already gotten a big lead.” Still, Sahila finished just out of the money in seventh place.

Another similar starter error almost cost Revere in the 4 x 400. “It was the same scenario, with us being in lane 1 with Devin Colon leading off,” noted Ros. “On set, Devin did not hear the starter.  Luckily, I noticed and yelled to the starter that Devin could not hear him.  This time the starter held the race up and his next set command was loud enough for Devin to hear.”

Another highlight for Revere came from Johnny Lopes whose jump of 20-3.75 qualified him for the Division 1 State meet in the long jump and earned him a fourth place medal.

However, although the Patriots finished in a strong fifth place with 49 points, they had hoped to do better.  “The NEC Meet had some good and bad to it,” commented Ros. “Some of the bad I will attribute to the Senior Prom the night before.  I know the boys won’t use that as an excuse, but a night of their final high school dance will definitely take from their legs the day after.”

RHS star trackster Michael Fitzpatrick suffered his first NEC loss all spring in the 800 meter run. “Right from the gun I knew something wasn’t right with Fitzy’s running,” noted Ros. “He took the lead, but it was slow.  He was challenged down the homestretch at the end of the first lap and retook the lead with 300 meters to go, but was outkicked at the end by a Peabody runner.  Michael’s time of 2:02.19 is very slow for him.  I could tell the prom affected his legs because it didn’t look like he had any run in them at all.  The 800 is too tough a race to not have your legs at 100 per cent.”

Other Revere point scorers in the meet were Jeff Simbert with a fourth in the 100 dash in 11.81; Ricardo Maldanado with a sixth in the 100 dash in 12.15 and a sixth in the javelin with a toss of 134-7; Tarik Maddrey with a fifth in the high jump with a leap of 5-10; and the 4 x 800 relay team with a sixth place finish in a time of 9:17.40.

Last week’s rain-delayed meet with Gloucester to determine the champion of the NEC South Division was set to take place yesterday (Tuesday).

The Division 1 State Meet will be held Sunday at Durfee High in Fall River.

Softball team needs two wins for tourney 

The Revere High softball team faces a make it or break it scenario in the final week of the season as the Lady Patriots look to qualify for the state tournament.

Coach Joe Ciccarello’s squad stands at 8-8 on the season with four games to go, of which they must win two in order to attain the needed .500 winning percentage to punch their ticket for a Journey to the Tourney.

All of the contests are home affairs, with the Revere girls set to host Salem this past Monday; Peabody today (Wednesday); Medford tomorrow; and Lynn English Friday.

The Lady Patriots dropped their only game of the past week by a 9-2 margin to league-leading Lynn Classical. Revere held a 2-1 lead through the third inning thanks to a two run double by Lindsay Gurska that delivered Logan DiCarlo and Cassandra DiBella.

However, Classical pushed across four runs in the fourth to take a 5-2 advantage and never looked back.

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