Sports 05-06-2015

May 7, 2015
By

RhS sports Roundup

Russo’s two-out homer in 7th gives RHS softball team dramatic 3-2 victory

The Revere High softball team earned one of the most exciting and dramatic victories in the program’s recent history with a come-from-behind, 3-2 triumph over Danvers, which perennially is one of the top teams not only in the Northeastern Conference, but also in the state.

Lady Patriot fireballing pitcher Sabrina Palermo, who was on the mound last year when Revere edged Danvers, once again was in top form against a Danvers lineup which features no weak links and includes some of the top softball players in Massachusetts. Sabrina yielded seven hits, fanned seven, and walked only one. She was reached for a run in the first inning and another in the fifth, a performance that ordinarily would leave the Lady Patriots with a comfortable lead by the late innings.

However, the Danvers pitcher equally was mowing through the Revere lineup and the score stood at 2-0 as the teams prepared for the top of the seventh inning with the Lady Patriots’ 6th-7th-8th hitters due up. However, as has been the case thus far this season for Revere, the latter part of the RHS batting order has come through on numerous occasions, and such was the case against Danvers. Alina Giuliano led off with a base hit and her courtesy runner, speedy Elizabeth Lake, soon scored on a base hit by Vanessa Puopolo to close the gap to 2-1.

After the next two Revere girls made outs, senior captain Victoria Russo, the Lady Pats’ lead-off hitter, stepped to the plate. Victoria belted a long blast that went far and deep over the Danvers left-fielder’s head for a home run that brought jubilation to the Revere bench. All that was left was for Palermo to finish off the Lady Falcons, which Sabrina accomplished in three-up, three-down fashion (strikeout, ground out, ground out) to close out the 3-2 victory.

“It was an incredibly emotional game for us,” said RHS head coach Joe Ciccarello. “The girls never quit — they somehow knew they had it in them and they did it. And as for Sabrina, she was throwing harder in the seventh inning than she was at the start. It was a great team victory.”

Two days later the Lady Patriots took on a Marblehead squad that has been making some noise in the NEC, including a 10-9 victory a week earlier over Winthrop in which Marblehead came back from a 9-1 deficit.

However, Revere brought its long-ball game to this one. Julianna Cecere popped a three-run roundtripper over the fence in the third inning and then belted a two-run double in the fifth. Marblehead scored a solo tally in the fourth and added two unearned markers in the sixth. However, RHS senior captain Kristina Stella blasted a three-run homer to that put the game away for the 8-3 finale.

However, even the best of teams can have a letdown, and such appeared to be the case for the Lady Patriots when they entertained Swampscott Friday. It was a classic “trap game” against an opponent that on paper was not of the same calibre as either Danvers or Marblehead (although Swampscott presently sits atop the South Division of the NEC).

The Lady Patriots held a 2-1 lead entering the fifth inning when the proverbial roof fell in — courtesy of two hit batsmen and two errors — that allowed five Swampscott base runners to cross the plate, leaving Revere facing a 6-2 deficit.

The Lady Patriots got three runs back in the sixth to slice the margin to 6-5, but Swampscott tallied two markers in the seventh. Revere rallied for a run in the bottom of the inning, but fell short by final score of 8-6.

“We didn’t have our usual focus,” said Ciccarello. “When the girls saw the Swampscott pitcher warming up, and realized she wasn’t as fast as the pitchers we’d been facing, we took it for granted that we were going to have a big day. But it never materialized and the result was a defeat.

“You never like to lose,” added the coach, “but sometimes a game like this can be a positive thing because it makes you realize that you have to be at the top of your game, mentally and physically, every time you step out onto the field.”

Cicarello and his crew, who now stand at 6-2 on the season and most recently were ranked 11th in Eastern Mass., were set to face Winthrop this past Monday; trek to Beverly this evening (Wednesday); host Beverly Friday; entertain Salem Monday; and then meet Lynn Classical under the lights at the St. Mary’s field next Wednesday at 7:00.

Al Blasi Day set for Monday

Ceremonies honoring Al Blasi, the late, long-time coach of the Revere High baseball team, will be held at Monday’s RHS-Salem game at Tony Conigiliaro Field. A flag will be raised with Blasi’s initials to highlight the honorarium to the former Patriot coach who headed the RHS baseball program for decades and who was universally recognized as an outstanding mentor to scores of Revere High baseball players.

Darouey’s comeback

nets first victory for

RHS girls tennis team

The Revere High girls tennis team earned its first victory of the season with an exciting 3-2 win over Medford last week.

All three of the Lady Patriots singles players defeated their Medford counterparts.

Sophomore Jocelyn Contreras handily defeated her Lady Mustang opponent at first singles, 6-0 and 6-3. Sophomore Hanadi Kobilic also was a winner in straight sets, 6-2 and 6-1, at second singles.

With the Revere doubles tandems of junior Lyba Khan & sophomore Victoria Mom at first doubles and sophomores Natalie Rossetti & Katherine Guzman at second doubles both losing in straight sets, the outcome of the match rested on the third singles contest between Revere’s Leila Darouey and her Lady Mustang opponent. Things were not looking bright for Revere when Darouey dropped the first set, 4-6, and then trailed 1-4 in the second. However, the Lady Patriot senior at that point then put on what can only be described as one of the most amazing comebacks by a Revere girls tennis player in some time, as she rallied to take the second set, 7-5, and then battled fiercely to capture a hard-fought third set, also by a 7-5 score, to win her match and give her team the victory.

“All of our singles players played extremely well,” said RHS head coach Carla Maniscalco, “with Leila’s the key match at third singles.”

Maniscalco and her squad have a busy week ahead, traveling to Winthrop today (Wednesday) and to Beverly Friday. They will host Salem Monday and entertain Lynn Classical next Wednesday.

RHS girls track

team defeats Salem,

cruises past Winthrop

The Revere High girls track team earned a a pair of wins this past week, defeating Northeastern Conference rivals Salem and Winthrop.

“We went into the Salem meet missing some of our top competitors, so it was nice to win and get some scoring from some unlikely sources,” said RHS head coach  Antonio LaBruna of his team’s 80-52 triumph.

Leading the way for the Lady Patriots was Jessica Cambraia, who scored 14.25 points with first place efforts in the 200 dash in 30.28 seconds and long jump with a leap of 14’-1”. Jessica also took a second in the triple jump with a landing of 29’-1.5” and led off the winning RHS 4 x 100 relay team. Other members of that victorious quartet were Angelina Nguyen, Duyen Nguyen, and Angelisa Nguyen in a clocking of 56.01.

“Jessica led our team in the meet despite dealing with a  bad foot,” said RHS LaBruna. “She continues to improve in the jumping events and jumped over 14 feet for the first time in long jump. Her 200M time isn’t where it should be, but she is usually going into that race hobbled after jumping. When her foot heals, she should be running at least two seconds faster than she did in this meet.”

Luana Santos was a double-winner for the Lady Patriots with firsts in the 400 hurdles in 1:19.6 and the triple jump with a distance of 29’-7”. “Luana had a great meet” said LaBruna. “She won both of her events and got personal records (PRs) in both as well. This is Luana’s second season on the team and last year we spent the majority of the season trying to find out where she’d be best suited as far as events are concerned. Now that she is settled in as a hurdler and triple jumper, she is starting to improve rapidly.”

Other first place finishers for Revere were: Angelisa Nguyen in the 100 dash; Fiona Kerthi in the 400 dash in 76.6; Janine So in the javelin with a toss of 76’-0”; Suellen Guerreiro in the two mile with a run of 14:10; and Hannah Fitzpatrick with a winning mile race of 6:11.

Second place finishers for the Lady Patriots were: Rania Bensadok in the high hurdles in  21.1; Helen Perez in the 400 hurdles in 1:21.7; Angelina Nguyen in the 100 dash; Monica Posada in the two-mile in 14:42; Rachel Shanbar in the shot-put with a toss of  26’-3” and the discus with a spin of 76’-4”; and Angelisa Nguyen with a long jump of 13’-9.5”.

Adding single points to the Revere side of the scoresheet with third place performances were: Nicole Paddock in the high hurdles in 22.7; Duyen Nguyen in the 200 dash in 31.5; Ariana Licata with a shot-put toss of 23’9” and a discus throw of 72’-5”; and Waldine Azaris with a long jump of 12’6”.

Later in the week the Lady Patriots engaged in a  tri-meet with Marblehead and Winthrop. Although the Revere girls fell short to Marblehead, 101-26, they easily cruised past Winthrop, 108-22.

Among the top performers for Revere was Helen Perez with a third in the 400 hurdles against Marblehead and a first against Winthrop with a time of 1:17.2.

Rachel Shanbar topped the field in the discus, winning the event with a throw of 82’-0”.

Suellen Guerreiro, with a mile time of 6:18, and Hannah Fitzpatrick, with a two- mile time of 13:34, both ran PRs. They won their races against Winthrop and Hannah finished second against Marblehead.

Catherine Elam jumped 29’-3” in the triple jump which was enough to win against Winthrop and finish second against Marblehead.

Angelisa Nguyen won the 100 dash against Winthrop and finished second against Marblehead with a time of 13.7. “It was Angelisa’s fastest time of the season, but she is capable of going faster,” noted LaBruna.

Janine So won the javelin against Winthrop and finished third against Marblehead with a throw of 79’-0”. “Janine is a sophomore and has really bought into the event and works extremely hard to get better,” said LaBruna. “She has a great arm and has established herself as one of the best young throwers in the league. She needs to correct some technical issues in her run up, but once she fixes that, I think she’ll be one of the top javelin throwers in the conference.”

The Lady Patriots were set to take on Lynn English yesterday (Tuesday). This coming Saturday is the NEC Freshmen/Sophomore meet in Salem.

RHS boys lacrosse

team wins two straight

The Revere High boys lacrosse team is on a roll, having won its last two contests over Matignon and Winthrop.

“At the beginning of the season we took a look at the schedule and said the games in May are the games we need to focus on,” said RHS head coach Steve Magno. “We have a very young and inexperienced team, and we knew it would take some time for our guys to learn the game and basic fundamental skills in order to compete.  The early games were going to be difficult, but the team has stuck to the plan and now it is paying off.”

The Patriots’ recent successful run can be traced back to the second half of their contest with Saugus last Thursday. After scoring only one goal in the first half, the Patriots stormed back after the intermission, scoring six goals.

“Although we lost the game 11-7, we proved to ourselves that we can hold our own and compete with anybody,” said Magno.

The next day the Pats took on Matignon and came away with an 8-5 victory. “It was not our best performance, but we’ll take the win,” said Magno. Eddie Sullivan (3 goals, 1 assist), Dan Redding (2G, 2A), Richie Damiano (2G), Dan Muller (1G), and Jason Loeser (1A) provided the scoring punch for Revere.

Most importantly, the Patriots were backstopped by impressive defense from Kevin Chiles, Julien Giraldo, Nick Smith, Michael Dellorfano, and goalie David Sinatra, who made 12 saves.  First year players Benit Sejdiu and Vito Grillo continued to improve and contributed on both offense and defense.  Steven Noel and Wes Spagnuolo were big on both sides of the ball and in the clearing game.  “All of our new guys continue to get better each game, and we know they will help down the stretch,” noted Magno.

Monday saw the Patriots gut out a hard-fought, 6-4 victory against archrival Winthrop. “Our boys played hard the entire game and most fought through injuries and the heat to claim the win at home,” said Magno. Sullivan continued his torrid scoring pace, reaching the back of the Winthrop net for four goals on the day. Redding and Damiano contributed a goal apiece.

However, the most impressive performance in the victory was the solid, shut-down defense by Chiles on Winthrop’s leading scorer. “We scouted them earlier this season and knew their strategy from our first meeting (which was a Winthrop victory),” said Magno. Overall, the Revere defense was solid and aggressive and limited Winthrop’s scoring chances.  The stingy team defense, which includes defensemen, midfielders, and goalie, continued to frustrate Winthrop’s attack, resulting in a number of turnovers and ground ball situations.  RHS goalie Sinatra was equally impressive, adding 14 saves to the winning effort.

“Although all our boys played hard, we now need to play smarter,” said Magno. “I felt we had an opportunity to put the game away, but to Winthrop’s credit, they kept coming at us, keeping the game close until the final whistle.

“We left too many points out there and made too many mental mistakes and unforced turnovers,” continued the coach. “We need to correct these at practice in order to keep winning games.”

Magno and his crew are set to host Lynn Classical next Thursday (May 7) and then will travel to Malden Saturday, May 9.

Boys tennis team

shuts out Medford

The Revere High boys tennis team earned its third win of the season with a 5-0 blanking of former Greater Boston League rival Medford last week.

Captain Ryan Tran led the way for the Patriots with a victory in straight sets at first singles over his Medford counterpart, 6-2, 6-3. Second singles player Mateo Lopez triumphed over his Mustang  in three sets, 6-2, 4-6, 6-2. In the third singles slot, Nelson Ortiz handily dispatched his Medford opponent, 6-1, 6-1.

In the doubles contests, the Patriots’ first doubles tandem of David Grujic and David Henao triumphed in three sets, 6-1, 1-6, 6-0, and the second doubles duo of Naveed Jabbar and Josh Preciado took their match in straight sets, 6-2, 7-6 (7-2).

Although the Patriots dropped their other matches of the past week, they played well against some of the top teams of the Northeastern Conference. In their encounter with Lynn Classical, Revere came out on the short end of a 3-2 decision. Lopez won his contest at second singles, 6-4, 6-2, as did the doubles combo of Grujic & Henao, 6-1, 7-5. Ortiz battled his Classical counterpart in a match that lasted more than two hours, falling by a close 4-6, 4-6 margin.

Last Monday, the Patriots lost their contest with Danvers, 5-0, but the encounter featured four, hard-fought matches.

Lopez at second singles engaged in a marathon battle with his Danvers rival. Mateo played three sets that finally ended at 7:45 after almost three hours of play with a tiebreaker in the third set deciding the outcome. The final score was 4-6, 6-0, 6-7 (4-7). Ortiz at third singles also competed in a lengthy match that featured an unusually long tiebreaker in the second set. Nelson’s score was 3-6, 6-7 (11-13). Both doubles matches also went to three sets with Grujic & Henao falling 7-6 (7-4), 4-6, 3-6, and Jabbar & Preciado coming up short, 6-4, 2-6, 3-6.

“The Danvers match was the closest 5-0 match we’ve ever played,” said RHS head coach Mike Flynn.

Although the Patriots dropped their matches to traditional NEC powerhouses Marblehead and Swampscott, there were some highlights for Flynn’s crew. Captain Jack Mallen and Andrea Shehaj teamed up for the first time this season agains Marblehead at second doubles. In the Swampscott encounter, Grujic, playing at second singles, was a winner, 6-2, 7-5. At second doubles, the tandem of Shehaj and Ibrahim Danguiar played well in a 1-6, 2-6 loss.

Flynn and his squad have a busy week ahead, hosting Winthrop today (Wednesday) and Beverly Friday. They will travel to Salem Monday (that also will include a resumption of a rain-delayed match from earlier in the season) and trek to Lynn Classical next Wednesday.

RHS baseball team

seeks to get on track

It was a rough stretch of games for the Revere High baseball team this past week, as the Patriots dropped contests to Danvers, Marblehead, and Swampscott.

“Overall, we have not been playing well,” said RHS head coach Shawn Brinkley. “Our defense has started to come around, but we need to generate more offense if we’re going to turn our season around.”

The Patriots travel to Beverly today (Wednesday) and to Everett Friday evening. They will host Salem Monday and trek to Lynn Classical next Wednesday.

RHS sports Through the Years

10 years ago

May 4, 2005

The Revere High baseball team stands at 3-6 and will need to generate more offense if it hopes to make a run for the state tournament in the second half of the season. Coach Al Blasi’s squad has scored only 25 runs in its nine games thus far. In an 8-0 loss to Arlington, 11 Patriot hitters fanned and managed only three hits. In a 2-1 win over Medford, sophomore Mark Addesa tossed a five hitter and drove in the game-winning run with a sacrifice fly. Brian Hartman had two doubles for Revere.

The RHS softball team came through with a three run rally in the last inning to defeat Arlington, 6-5. Jenna Forgione smacked a two-run homer to tie the game and freshman Lisa Polsonetti scored the winning run when she doubled and came around on a  Medford throwing error.

20 years ago

May 3, 1995

Mike Spinelli tossed a masterful shutout for the Revere High baseball team, fanning 17 Arlington opponents, in an 8-0 victory. Spinelli also smacked a three run homer into the wind in the first inning. Frank Candela cracked a 410 foot solo homer in the fourth. In a 10-5 triumph over Waltham, the Patriot winning hurler was Tom Levett. Candela led the offense with a 3-for-4 effort, including a double, a triple, and two stolen bases. Chris Cifuni had three hits and David Lightbody had two hits for coach Al Blasi’s squad.

Leanne DeMarco tossed a two-hitter for the RHS softball team in a 2-1 win over Arlington. Freshman Michelle DeCur punched the game-winning, two-run single.

40 years ago

April 30, 1985

The Revere High baseball team defeated Arlington, 6-3, but then was walloped by Medford, 11-1. Vinnie Clucas tossed all nine innings in the Arlington win, scattering seven hits, walking four, and striking out eight. Phil DiLiegro had three hits, stole a base, and scored two runs.

60 years ago

May 5, 1955

More than 2000 fans jammed McMackin Field for the season-opening ceremonies of Revere Little League Sunday. The league’s eight teams, four in the East Division and four in the West, played their annual Jamboree to kick off the season. City Manager Edward P.O’Toole threw out the first pitch.

RHS AD Shaun Hart leaving post

By Seth Daniel

Revere High School (RHS) Athletic Director Shaun Hart has informed the schools that he will leave his post at the end of the school year for an athletic director job in Burlington Public Schools.

Hart said on Monday he has really enjoyed his years in Revere and the decision was purely about quality of life and reducing his long commute.

Hart lives in Westford and said his commute would go from nearly two hours to 25 minutes.

“My issue has always been that I drive from Westford to Revere every day,” he said. “It’s a long drive, a lot of hours in the car and way from my family. For me, if anything came around that was closer and was a good educational step, it was understood I would apply for it…I’m not leaving on bad terms. I’m leaving for the purpose of being closer to family and to spend more time with my kids. Revere’s in me now. That’s a good thing. Being able to find success in a tight-knit, strong community like Revere means you have a great stepping stone to being able to find success anywhere.”

Hart said he would be around until the end of June, and would be there to open the new Harry Della Russo Stadium for graduation in June.

He began in Revere in August, 2010, and served five years here.

Already, there have been rumors of candidates from within the district that could be interested. Those include former Athletic Director Keith Correia, Revere teacher (and Masco basketball coach) Frank Shea.

Supt. Paul Dakin said it was certainly Burlington’s gain and Revere’s loss. He said the job hasn’t immediately opened up – as the news is still fresh – but applications would be sought from inside and outside the district in the near future.

For now, Dakin said he is focusing how far Hart took the sports program and where it needs to go.

“Shaun has made great progress in the time he’s been here,” said Dakin. “He’s been a great advocate to have during the Stadium project. He’s well versed in sports and also well versed in the state Athletic Director network. Burlington’s gain is certainly Revere’s loss.”

Hart will be most remembered in years to come for his advocacy and dogged determination to get the district’s facilities in better shape.

Off the bat, he and Dakin were able to partner in rebuilding the condemned bleachers in the RHS Fieldhouse. Then, he was able to rehabilitate the old Field House and take it from a dark, dank location to a bright space that is now sought-after.

His advocacy and expertise in the Stadium project is something he said was very rewarding to him.

“You have to be proud of where you are from,” he said. “The City, and especially Mayor Rizzo, and Paul Dakin saw a need. Mayor Rizzo wanted to make sure these kids could have what they needed. It’s a tremendous project and I’ve never been so proud of being part of something like that.”

In addition to the facility upgrades, Hart also added boys and girls lacrosse during his tenure. He said he did so to make sure the kids in Revere had the same opportunities as other kids.

“I wanted our kids to have everything everybody else had,” he said. “We added two varsity sports, we have new uniforms and we look good on the field.”

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