It had been 35 years since the Winthrop High hockey team last played Springfield Cathedral. That memorable contest was played in the old Boston Garden for the 1976 State Division I hockey championship, a contest which every Viking hockey fan knows was won by that immortal Winthrop squad.
Although the present day Vikings were not even the proverbial twinkle in anyoneâ€™s eyes at that time, they nonetheless played with the same degree of intensity for a full 45 minutes as did that team of almost two generations ago and came away with a 3-2 victory at Springfield Saturday.
â€œIt was a total team effort,â€ said WHS head coach Dale Dunbar. â€œIt was one of those games where every boy who was on the ice made big plays for us throughout the entire game.â€
Joe Scarfo gave Winthrop an early 1-0 lead, with assists going to Nick Clewer and Chris LeBlanc, but Cathedral, which was a Super 8 team last season, knotted matters before the first period ended.
A bang-bang power play goal, on which LeBlanc one-timed it after nifty passes from carfo and Jake Rand, made it 2-1. Clewer made it a 3-1 contest after LeBlanc took a long pass from Dylan Piwinski, rushed down the wing, and slid the puck perfectly over to his teammate, who tapped it past the Cathedral goalie.
However, Cathedral made a game of it, moving within 3-2, but outstanding goaltending by Viking netminder Steve Waites and fine defense when Springfield pulled its goalie for a sixth skaterpreserved the lead and the victory.
â€œOur defense was superb, especially at the end when they pulled their goalie. We kept it together and played very smart as a team,â€ said Dunbar, who in particular praised the defensive work of Rand and Jimmy Barker and noted the first varsity performance of freshman blue liner Steve Goddard.
Three days earlier the Vikings learned the truth of the maxim, â€œLive by the sword, die by the sword,â€ as they saw a 3-0 lead after two periods dissipate into a 3-3 tie with Beverly. The Vikings themselves have pulled out two ties this season with last minute heroics, but this time it was Beverly who turned the tables with the tying marker in the waning minutes.
Scarfo, assisted by Clewer; Clewer, unassisted; and LeBlanc, assisted by Scarfo, accounted for the Winthrop goals.
â€œBeverly played well on the road, but we needed one more goal in that final period to put the game on ice, but we couldnâ€™t get it,â€ said Dunbar.
Dunbar and his skaters, who now stand at 4-2-3 on the season, host Marblehead tonight at 6:10 (the game was postponed from Wednesday) and will journey to Lynn Saturday evening.
Vikings win big, then drop two games in OT
It was a mixed bag for the Winthrop High boys basketball team this past week. After easily handling the Innovative Charter Academy of Tyngsboro last Wednesday, the Vikings dropped a pair of contests in overtime to Peabody on Friday and to Lynn Classical on Tuesday.
The contest with Innovative Charter, which is in it first year as a varsity program, afforded WHS coach Dave Brown the chance to give all of his varsity and some JV players some playing time. Amar Zebic with 14 points and Jonathan Spinazzola with 13 points led the Vikings en route to a 63-33 triumph.
However, the twin losses to Peabody (58-55) and Classical (65-63) proved to be another story. The Vikings held the lead down the stretch in the closing seconds in both contests, but were unable to put the games away thanks to a technical foul in the Peabody game and missed foul shots against Classical that allowed those teams to tie the games in regulation.
â€œWe made too many mental mistakes,â€ said WHS head coach Dave Brown. â€œWe didnâ€™t execute at the end. We need to get it together and execute as a team if we are to win close games like that.â€
Taj Generazzo led Winthrop in the scoring department against Classical with 20 points. J.P. Doherty hit for 13 and Michael Griffin for 11 in that contest. Griffin popped in 15 against Peabody with Joe Dâ€™Amore also reaching double figures with 11.
The boys host Salem Friday evening and host Malden Monday evening. Tip off time for both tilts is 7:00.
Kosteganâ€™s clutch free throws boosts Lady Viking to 40-39 win
Lauren Kostegan came off the bench in the waning moments to sink a pair of free throws and break a 38-38 tie to give the Winthrop High girls basketball team an exciting 40-39 victory over Peabody Friday night.
Lauren entered the game when Lady Viking Angelina Favaloro had the wind knocked out of her, which resulted in a Peabody foul and the award of two free throws. However, with her injury preventing Angelina from stepping to the charity stripe, Kostegan was called upon by Coach Ignacio Oyola to take the shots.
â€œLauren has been shooting well from the free throw line for us and she really came through in the clutch,â€ said Oyola.
The contest had been a tight affair all the way, with Peabody holding slim leads of 9-8, 17-15, and 29-25 at the first three quarter junctions. However, Winthrop picked up its pace in the final period and eventually drew to even-steven at 38-38, setting the stage for Kosteganâ€™s heroics.
Johnna Fisher led the Lady Vikings with 17 points and Kostegan hit for 10. Temison Meggisonadded six, Liana Ferullo contributed five, and Niki Tsiotis came through with two important points.
Tuesday nightâ€™s game with Lynn Classical was another down-to-the-wire act that saw Winthrop once make up ground in the fourth quarter, but this time the Lady Vikings came out on the short end of a 46-43 decision.
â€œWe have to come out with more intensity right from the start,â€ said Oyola. â€œWe canâ€™tÂ play just one good half of basketball and expect to win.â€
The Lady Vikings trailed 21-11 at the intermission thanks to a mere two points of production in the second period when Winthrop had trouble breaking the Classical press and the Lady Ramsâ€™ double-teaming defense. However, after talking matters over with Oyola in the locker room, the Lady Vikings began to get it together on offense, eventually pulling ahead by five, 38-33, with about three minutes to play.
But Winthrop ran out of gas and Classical was able to bounce back for the win. Fisher once again led the Lady Viking point parade with 20, including six for six from the free throw line. Favaloro had eight, Meggison and Kostegan added six apiece, and Ferullo dropped in a three pointer.
Oyola and his crew, who now stand at 3-6 on the season, travel to Salem Friday and are off until next Friday.
Lady Bulldog skaters win two more, now 6-1
The Winthrop Lady Bulldog hockey team turned in another pair of impressive performances with victories over Cambridge and Medford this past week.
â€œWeâ€™re playing well,â€ said Winthrop head coach Anthony Martucci. â€œThe defense has been superb and all three lines are contributing to the offense.â€
In a 5-0 shutout of Cambridge last Thursday, Hannah LoPresti scored two goals and Nicole Pucillo, McKenzie Clark, and Chelsey Bartlett added a goal apiece as Winthrop outshot Cambridge by a wide 46-16 margin. Clark also was credited with two assists on the night, as was Taylor Brown. Julianna Kennedy, Anna Fucillo, Amanda Cordes, Courtney McTague, and Kara Donati also earned points for assists.
Two nights later the Lady Bulldogs took on a Medford team that had been rated among the top teams in Eastern Mass. However, the story once again was of Winthropâ€™s dominance, as evidenced by their shots on goal advantage of 49-23 and the 5-1 final score.
Five Lady Bulldogs took turns lighting the lamp: Cordes (assisted by Caroline McKinnon), Brown (assisted by McTague and goalie Katie Burt, who earned her second assist of the season), Clark (assisted by McTague and Kasey Harris), Donati (assisted by Brown), and McKinnon (assisted by Cordes and 7th grader Flora English).
Martucci and his crew, who are rated number three in the Massachusetts Hockey poll, are back in action today (Thursday) at 4:30 when they host Shawsheen Tech. On Saturday they will host Springfield Cathedral, a team that beat Winthrop twice last season. Face off time for that contest isÂ 7:20 at Larsen.
Lady Viking track team makes it two wins in a row
The Winthrop High girls indoor track team earned its second straight victory with a 47-39 triumph over Lynn Classical last Wednesday.
The Lady Vikings took five of the nine individual events en route to the win: Julia Wallace in the high jump with a leap of 4-8; Jessica Dowson, who led a Winthrop sweep in the 50 yard hurdles in 8.4; Jordan Griffiths in the 1000 in 3:43.6; Amy Sena in the mile in 6:31; and Kaitlyn Hersey in the two mile in 13:40.5.
However, the key to the victory was the Lady Vikingsâ€™ depth as they took second place in six events that put 18 points onto the Winthrop side of the scoresheet:: Katherine Hetherton with a high jump of 4-2; Katie Cochrane in the hurdles in 8.6; Christina Russo in the 50 dash in 6.9; Maria Rago in the 600 in 2:05; Corey Charis in the 1000 in 3:53; and Wallace in the two mile in 15:28.6.
With the combined scores of the first and second place finishers totaling 43 points (there are 86 total possible points), the Lady Vikings needed third place points to win, which they received from Elizabeth Anderson with a toss of 24-6 in the shotput; Kayla Aceto in the hurdles in 9.0; Lexi Vaccaro in the 50 dash in 7.0; and Kristen Lanza in the 600 in 2:05.5.
The Lady Vikings took on Salem this past Monday and face Lynn English next Wednesday.
Correale wins shotput in meet with Classical
Paul Correale took first place in the shotput for the Winthrop High boys track team with a heave of 39 feet, 11.75 inches in last weekâ€™s meet with Lynn Classical.
Jordan Ekidat was the leading scorer for the Vikings in the contest, taking second place in two events, the high jump with a leap of 5-6 and the 50 yard dash in 6.0 seconds.
Robert Pino grabbed a third in the 50 yard hurdles in 9.1 and Pat Brogan took third in the 600 in 1:49.5 to round out the Winthrop scoresheet.
Other Vikings who competed were Trevor Heatherton with a fourth in the hurdles in 9.2; David Heirdrut with a fourth in the 300 in 43.9; Justin Casilla with a fifth in the 300 in 45.9; and Mario Mazzone with a fifth in the 600 in 1:57.6.