WHS SPORTS ROUNDUP
WHS girls basketball team wins two of three
The Winthrop High girls basketball team cruised to a pair of runaway victories this past week, dispatching Swampscott, 42-22, and Lynn English, 48-22. Sandwiched between those twin wins was a 41-32 loss to Peabody, the Lady Vikings’ first defeat in the Northeastern Conference this season.
Last Wednesday’s triumph at Swampscott showcased a familiar pattern for Winthrop in which the Lady Vikings applied a stifling defense in the middle two periods to break open what initially had been a tight contest. After battling Swampscott to a 9-9 deadlock in the first quarter, Winthrop limited the Lady Big Blue to just four points in the second frame and only two in the third — a total of six points in the middle half of the contest — allowing Winthrop to turn the encounter into a 32-15 rout after three stanzas.
Kristen Siscamanis, who led all scorers with 18 points, keyed the Lady Viking run in the second period with 10 points, including a pair of threes, that pushed Winthrop from the 9-9 tie into a 24-13 lead at the intermission. Other scorers on the night for Winthrop were Allie Love, who hit for nine points (including two treys), followed by Niki Tsiotis with six, Poli Tsiotis and Jaida Hightower with four apiece, and freshman Francesca Capone with a free throw.
In Tuesday’s tilt with Lynn English on the WHS floor, the Lady Vikings put the pedal to the floor from the outset and never let up against their Lady Ram counterparts. Winthrop led 14-3 after one period, 25-8 at the half, and 39-11 at the third buzzer.
Siscamanis led the point parade with 14 and Niki T. reached double figures with 11. Hightower hit for eight, followed by Poli T. with four, the quintet of Love, Capone, Lucia Alabart, Catherine Johnson, and Courtney McSwiney with two points apiece, and Isabella Mirata with a free throw.
WHS head coach Ignacio Oyola termed last Friday’s defeat to Peabody, “an ugly loss. We shot 12-for-49 from the field and 8-for-17 from the free throw line,” said the coach. “You aren’t going to win too many games with numbers like those.”
Winthrop started out well, grabbing an 11-4 lead in the opening quarter and taking an 18-12 advantage into the locker room at the half. However, the Lady Vikings managed to score just five points in the third period, while yielding 15, to fall behind 27-23, and never managed to find their rhythm.
“Peabody went into a 2-3 zone after the first period and we started to rush our shots,” said Oyola, whose squad was 0-for-10 from three-point land on the night. Siscamanis recorded a double-double with 11 points and 14 rebounds. Niki T. accounted for 13 points and four steals. Poli T. scored five points, Capone added two, and Love sank a free throw. Alabart made four steals.
In all three contests the Lady Vikings were without the services of their key front-court performer, junior Nina Bartlette, who has been out of action with a sprained ankle. Oyola is hoping Nina will return to the floor this coming week. Winthrop also was playing without another starter and a key cog at both ends of the floor, Maura Lanza, who suffered a concussion and is day-to-day.
The Lady Vikings, who now are 7-3 overall and 6-1 in the NEC, will host Lynn Classical Friday and then will entertain Beverly, one of the top teams in the NEC (North Division) this season, Tuesday
WHS boys hockey team defeats Gloucester
The Winthrop High boys hockey team broke open a 3-3 deadlock after two periods with four goals in the final stanza to defeat Gloucester, 7-3, Saturday evening at Larsen Rink.
Mike Norris, assisted by Sean Gillis, scored what proved to be the game-winner early in the period. Pat Todisco (from Dylan Driscoll and Charlie Page), freshman Henry Brooks (unassisted), and Mike Casey (from Noah Hodgkins) added insurance goals to put the frosting on the WHS victory cake.
Driscoll (assisted by Todisco and Alex Anzuoni) scored in the opening period and Page (assisted by Norris) and Gillis (unassisted) lit the lamp for the Vikings in the middle frame. Viking goaltender Tom DiBenedetto earned the victory in the net to remain undefeated on the season.
“It was a good win for us,” noted WHS head coach Dale Dunbar. “It also was nice to have Dylan Driscoll back at full speed after being out with an injury. Dylan is one of our captains and brings so much to our team, in terms of his leadership, both on and off the ice. He’s a great asset who makes a difference in so many ways.”
The victory over Goucester was a nice rebound win after the Vikings had dropped their first Northeastern Conference game of the season, 3-2 to Beverly, Wednesday evening at Larsen.
“It was a great high school hockey game,” said Dunbar. “Beverly has been one of our big rivals the past few years. We always have a hard-fought game with them and this was no exception.”
The teams battled to a 1-1 standoff after the first period, with Brooks scoring the Viking goal, assisted by Anzuoni. However, Beverly forged ahead in the middle frame, 3-2, and fended off a Winthrop onslaught in the final 15 minute stanza in which the Vikings did everything but score, while limiting the Panthers to just three shots on goal. Dan Brogan scored Winthrop’s second-period goal on the power play on a shot from the point after Page had won the face-off.
The Vikings, who now stand at 6-2-1 overall and are in first place in the NEC North with a 4-1-1 mark, were on tap to face another pair of tough division opponents this week. They were set to trek to Danvers last night (Wednesday) and to Peabody Saturday. Dunbar and his crew then are off until the following Saturday when they will host Marblehead at Larsen.
Girls hockey team
hosts Austin Prep Wed.
The Winthrop High Lady Bulldog hockey team will be on the road for its next two games, traveling to Maconomet Regional Saturday and to Medford Monday. They will return home Wednesday to host Austin Prep at Larsen Rink for a 6:10 face-off.
Sena, Garufo, Bensons
winners at Danvers meet
Four members of the Lady Viking indoor track team captured their individual events in last week’s meet with Danvers.
Amy Sena won the high jump with a leap of 4′-“8; Regina Garufo sprinted to victory in the 300 in 48.1; Holly Benson topped the field in the 600 dash in 1:51; and Heidy Benson took the 1000 in 3:39.7.
Second place finishers for Winthrop who added three points to the Lady Viking score were: Carly O’Keefe in the 55 hurdles in 9.6; Emily McGovern in the 55 dash in 8.3; and Nina Leone in the mile in 6:29.3.
Third place efforts came from Sela Zalwango in the hurdles in 10.6; Haley Holden in the 600 in 2:00; Abigail Love in the mile in 6:30; and Kristen Ford in the two mile in 14:27.
Winthrop also won the 4 x 400 relay in a clocking of 4:46, 11 seconds better than the Danvers quartet.
The Lady Vikings are set to be back in action today (Thursday) against Marblehead.
Holden, Garufo, Beaudry
win for WHS boys track team
Although the Winthrop High boys indoor track team dropped a 61-24 decision to Danvers last week, there were a number of highlights for the Viking trackmen.
Three Vikings won their individual events. Cal Garufo captured the 300 dash in a time of 41.3; Chris Beaudry topped the field in the 600 dash in 1:44.7; and William Holden outdistanced his opponents in the two mile run in 11:34.
Joe Bosco took second place in the 1000 run in 3:23 and Marc Bouche grabbed second in the 55 hurdles in 9.2 seconds.
Adding single points for the Vikings with third place efforts were: Brady McGrath with a shotput toss of 31′-7″; Daniel Dell’Anno in the 55 dash with a sprint of 7.4; Taylor George in the 300 in 44.7; and Brian Perrin in the 100 in 3:31.
The boys are scheduled to be back in action today (Thursday) against Marblehead.
Gymnastics team competes
against Salem, wins 122-101
The Winthrop High gymnastics team competed against Salem this past week at the Sterling YMCA in Beverly and came home with a 122.15-101.1 triumph.
“This was a very informal meet, which is actually good for the girls because it keeps the pressure off,” said WHS head coach Melissa Wiles.
First up on the vault for Winthrop was Jamie Gobiel in her first effort on the event this season. Jamie scored a fine 6.9. Molly Janeilis went next for Winthrop and scored a 7.1. “Molly has a vault with a lot of power,” noted Wiles. “She didn’t vault for us last year, so we are very happy to have her improve with hard work and make it into the lineup.”
Lady Viking Captain Julia Duplin followed with a score of 7.6. “Julia never disappoints on vault,” said WHA assistant coach Daria Millerick. “She is very clean and consistent.”
Lacey Scott then turned in an impressive score of 8.5. “Lacey has the speed and force to land a nice vault. She definitely set the bar for the next person up,” said Wiles.
WHS Captain Mackenzie Chiudina followed Scott with an 8.2. “I can always depend on Mackenzie for a solid vault,” said Wiles.
That brought up Christa Vaccaro, who performs the team’s most difficult vault, a Pike Yurchenko. Christa landed a 9.4 with her best vault of the year so far. “The Mass. High School Gymnastics Association has a ‘9.5’ club,” said Wiles. “We are hoping to get Christa in there with a few of these vaults.”
On bars, the next event, Gobiel started with a score of 5.6 with a clean routine. Kaitlyn Carter followed with a 6.4. “Kaitlyn was nervous about bars, but she definitely pulled through,” noted Millerick.
Scott, who is one of Winthrop’s all-arounds with Vaccaro, came up next and scored a 6.3. “Lacey hasn’t done gymnastics in two years and has made a very strong comeback as a freshman,” said Wiles. “High school gymnastics only allows you to have two all arounds per meet, so if someone is able to do all four events, it’s a big deal. We don’t choose all-arounds lightly. Although it has a lot to do with skill, it also has a lot to do with hard work. If you are always at practice and always working hard, you’ll be on our list of choices. Lacey is definitely one of our hardest workers.”
Chiudina came next and scored a 6.7. “Mackenzie has a very fluid routine on bars,” noted Millerick. “Her scores always count for us (being among the top four), so she is a very important part of the lineup.”
Captain Julia Duplin followed with a 7.0. “Julia is another one of our top scorers,” said Wiles. “This is the fourth year on the team for both Julia and Mackenzie. They have come far and proven to be great role models for the girls in the grades below them.”
Last up was Vaccaro (who is a level 9 gymnast in USA Gymnastics). “Christa has a longer, more difficult routine,” added Millerick. “She scored a 9.0 which was the best of this season.”
The floor exercise was the next event. Scott scored a 7.1, Carter turned in a 6.4, Duplin came through with a 7.2, and Vaccaro completed the Winthrop scoring with a 7.8.
“The floor exercise is such a fun event, because you can really see girls personalities come out through their dance and choice of music,” said Wiles. “Lacey is a great dancer and you see it through her jumps and leaps. This routine is new for Kaitlyn, as of only about three weeks ago, but she has it down pat. Julia didn’t compete on floor regularly for us last year, but she has really come through with a strong routine for us this year. Mackenzie turned out a really fun/jazzy routine. She has really powerful tumbling and you would never know if she were tired in the middle of the routine. “
The last event was beam. Janielis opened for Winthrop with a 5.2 and Gobiel scored a 5.1. After Marina Huenchunir scored a 5.0, Taylor Reilly performed a fine routine. “Taylor is always on the beam. You could say she lives there during each practice. She’s been working on connecting two cartwheels on the beam and she’s finally got it down,” said Wiles.
Scott came next with a 6.9 and Vaccaro concluded the evening with a mark of 7.7. “Molly has been working very hard on beam so we were really happy when she stuck her whole routine with no falls,” noted Millerick. “This routine is still new for Marina, as this was only the second time she has ever competed gymnastics and she scored a fine 5.0. As for Lacey, although it is not her favorite event, she looks like she belongs on the beam. She has clean lines and high jumps.”
The Lady Vikings were scheduled to host Beverly tonight (Thursday) and compete at Masconomet tomorrow evening and at Medford Tuesday.
Next Friday, January 23, looms as a big night on the Lady Vikings’ calendar as they will be hosting Gloucester at the Winthrop High gymnasium. The annual meet at the high school always draws a large crowd and is expected to do so again next Friday.