Sports 01-07-2016

Dempsey gives it all in women’s Winter Classic on New Years Eve

By Joe Prezioso

This past New Year’s Day, the Boston Bruins faced off against the Montreal Canadiens at Gillette stadium to an almost sold-out crowed as part of the NHL 2015 Winter Classic.

Few knew, though, the NWHL’s Boston Pride women’s pro hockey team faced off against the CWHL’s Montreal Canadiens on New Year’s Eve.

And Winthrop had a stake in the outcome.

Playing for the Pride was Winthrop’s Jillian Dempsey.

“This is my first year with the Boston Pride. The past two years I was with the CWHL,” said Dempsey.

Dempsey went to Rivers School in Weston for high school and then played for Harvard University. After that, she played for the national team before joining the CWHL’s Boston Blades, which took the 2015 Clarkson Cup.

This past year, the creation of the NWHL saw the movement of many players from the Blades to the Pride team, including Dempsey. So, this year’s Winter Classic game was almost a rematch of the final championship match from last season’s CWHL that featured the Blades against the Montreal Canadiens.

“I have played against them. We have had some pretty big battles, some big rivalries (in) the past two years, (with) Boston and Montreal,” said Dempsey. “We actually got the last say, because it was them who we had in the championship when we won the Clarkson Cup. They want some revenge.”

The difference between last year’s match and this year’s match is that it will be outside.

“You know, pond hockey wasn’t big for me growing up. I always put it on my Christmas list to have a rink in the yard and I always wanted to play pond hockey,” she said.

“For a lot of people who haven’t seen the quality of play, I think it will be quite surprising for them,” said Pride Coach Bobby Jay.

The NHL did not heavily promote the women’s Winter Classic game as much as they promoted the alumni game and the Bruins game. With that said, the women played hard and fast.

“It was incredible,” said Dempsey. “It was pretty short when we were out on the ice but there was a lot of adrenaline. Pond hockey on the biggest stage ever!”

The two periods ended with a 1-1 tie.

“Obviously we wanted to win, but we did end up tying it up. Thank god because a loss would have really sat in my skull,” said Dempsey. “Having the cross over was a great experience because they are highly talented and skilled. We wish we had a 60-minute game against them but it was great exposure. If we could have gone for another period we could have come out on top.”

The match saw heavy action and even the injury of Pride Denna Laing of Marblehead, who was injured near the end of the first period and taken out by stretcher.

Dempsey would like to see more crossover games between the CWHL and the NWHL.

“The league feels successful, from our perspective, we seem to be drawing bigger crowds then we did with the CWHL. Our hope is that things continue to get better next season,” said Dempsey.

The Pride is a new team, part of a new league and things right now seem to be going good as far as anyone in the league is concerned. Former U.S. National Coach Bobby Jay practices with the girls on the ice, taking part in their practice and not just giving orders.

The support staff and players are like a family.

“I have known Jill for a while; I coached for the national team and she played for the national team for a few tournaments while I was there,” said Jay. “So I knew her game and expected great things out of her this year and she surpassed them. She’s having a fantastic year for us.”

Women’s hockey has a lot of room to grow in the U.S. and with two leagues competing for fans, two Boston teams alone, it will take time and effort to see which league is successful in the U.S. Dempsey has played for both leagues and hopes to see more women take to the ice.

In Winthrop/Lynn, there is the Bulldogs girls’ hockey team that gives girls who enjoy the ice the chance to play in an all-girls league, but not all towns and cities have that.

This year, Everett ended its girls’ hockey team.

“A lot of kids get misguided and put too much emphasis on some things that aren’t as important as others. In my opinion the two most important things are, focus on where you are right now. Enjoy that experience and work to get better all the time. Don’t try to think, ‘I gotta do this to get there.’ All of a sudden you’ll be trying to line up three moves down the road when your not getting the most out of where you are in that instance,” said coach Jay.

“Honestly the thing I would want to say to anyone for advice is to work hard and have fun,” said Dempsey. “Playing hockey is the best thing ever and has brought me so much joy. It’s my favorite thing to do, having that love for the game, that passion is going to drive you and motivate you to keep going.”

Vikings ice Saugus Sachems 5-3

By: Jim Lederman

The winless Saugus Sachems scored two first period goals to throw a scare into the Winthrop Vikings, Saturday night at Larsen Rink.

The Vikings countered with two-second period goals to tie the score and three power play goals in the third for a decisive (5-3) victory, to improve to (4-2-1). Dale Dunbar’s sextet won three games law week!

Junior all-star center Charlie Page (he looks like the best player in the conference) scored the first Viking tally at 7:47 of the second period.

Freshman sensation Sam Yarrow scored the tying goal on the power play at 3:45 of the second stanza.

Charlie Page lit the lamp at 11:50 of the third period, one minute later soph standout Henry Brooks, scored an unassisted tally to increase the lead to (4-2).

Brooks lit the lamp at 8:40 on a two-man advantage power play goal. The highflying soph standout combined with Page on the high scoring line. Sam Yarrow scored the final Viking goal, leading the Vikings to their fourth victory.

The six goals scored by the Vikings showed the scoring potential of a tem that will be a title contender in 2016.

Sophomore Bryce Costin paired on the first defense with co-captain Noah Hodgkins. With his mom Stephanie shouting encouragement and taking pictures from the Press Box, the young soph had a solid game and continues to improve.

Yarrow would score the final Viking goal and he leads the team in goals scored.

Marblehead remains undefeated with a (3-0) victory over Beverly.

The road ahead finds the Vikings traveling to Gloucester for a battle with the always tough Fishermen on Saturday night in Gloucester. A trip to play the Danvers Falcons on Wed., January 13th at the new Endicott College rink is another big game for the young Viking skaters.

Drop the puck!

Let the Games Begin!

The Winter Classic

Sixty thousand Bruins and hockey fans shelled out hundreds of dollars to watch the Boston Bruins and Canadians play at Gillette Stadium and were very disappointed!

The Bruins did not show up and lost (5-1). The lack of offense and defense for the Boston Bruins reminded me of the year 2015. The Bruins lost players like Johnny Boychuk and Dougie Hamilton because of the decisions and trades ex-GM Peter Chiarelli was responsible for.

The Red Sox finished in last place because of the Red Sox GM – Ben Cherington. Two last place teams.

The arrival of David Dombrowski and a change of GM’s for the Boston Bruins bring optimism for our beloved Red Sox and Bruins in 2016.

Let the Games Begin!

Road Trip

Viking hockey fans heading up to Gloucester to the legendary Talbot Rink (the Fish Tank) to watch the Vikings battle the Fishermen, Saturday night at 6 p.m.

The best seafood restaurant (beside Belle Isle) in Gloucester is the Causeway Restaurant. Take exit 14 – route 133 to Gloucester, turn right at bottom of ramp, three miles on right, across from the Cape Ann Marina. The Talbot Rink is only a few miles away across town! A great meal and a Vikings victory!

Around the Rim

I spoke with a former Northeastern University hoop star last week. Quinton Dale played with the late Boston Celtic Reggie Lewis at NU. Quinton was proud to tell me his son Quinton Dale Jr., is a junior and standout for Wheaton College. Quinton helped lead the Vikings hoop team to a state championship in 2011 at the TD Garden. When will that program return to the glory years “Winthrop players from Winthrop families” – A Winthrop hoop tradition!

Speaking about ex-Viking athletes, three ex-Viking skaters are playing at the ‘big time’ college level. Goaltender Pat Feeley is between the pipes on the University of Vermont team. Joe Scarfo, an ex-Viking NEC all-star is a junior on the Curry College Colonel team. Chris LeBlanc NEC MVP, skates for the Merrimack Warriors!

Let the Games Begin!

Building The Program

I am amazed at the success of Winthrop Youth Programs. I walk into Larsen Rink and I am amazed at the girls and boys youth programs – developing Winthrop talent from Winthrop families.

Dale Dunbar, Butch Martucci and Sean Driscoll have built strong programs and championship teams, with Winthrop players from Winthrop families – A Viking tradition.

The smallest school in the NEC has won many championships and state titles with strong program developed from the youth programs in our proud community.

John Gambale is following coaches Dunbar, Driscoll and Martucci in developing young players. I look forward to watching coach Gambale win his first Viking championship with Winthrop players from Winthrop families in the future – Go Lady Vikings!

Let the Games Begin!

Viking Athletes

A salute to a group of Viking student-athletes that do not receive recognition for their participation.

This group of swimmers on the Lynn English team: Katie McDonald, Chris Haskell, Elena DuLouic, Andrea Callahan, Vajuda Musaka, Brandon Musaka, Danielle Carney, Matt Bruno, Caleigh Peterson, Caroline Zuffante and Shanelle Turransky.

Congrats to the hard working Winthrop cheerleaders during their fall competition.

The boys on the squad, Christopher and Patrick Haskell following in the footsteps of brother Leo the second male cheerleader in Viking history who followed Jimmy Adamson!

Three Cheers to this group!

From the Press Box

The Bird Era

By: Jim Lederman

We have been very fortunate in Boston. We are presently enjoying the success of the Tom Brady era. Thirty (30) years ago, Larry Bird led the Boston Celtics to an NBA championship during the (19854-1986) season. Larry Bird is a legend in Boston; I was very fortunate to watch Larry Bird lead the Boston Celtics to three NBA World Championships (1981, 1984 and 1986). I was a season ticket holder and I watched one of the greatest players in NBA history, lead the Boston Celtics to three World Championships – the Larry Bird Era!

The Celtics executed perhaps the greatest season in NBA history and in the history of a franchise that has captured 17-World Championships. When the best single season teams of all-time are discussed the (1985-1986) team is always mentioned – ‘The Bird Era.’

This band of Celts with four starters who would gain entry to the ‘Hall of Fame’, Larry Bird, Kevin McHale, Robert Parish and Dennis Johnson and one reserve – Bill Walton, was perhaps ‘the best’ in the history of the game. The ‘big three’ – Bird, Parish and McHale were a legendary trio and Danny Ainge (present Celtics general manager) and reserve Scott Wedman formed owe to the greatest teams in the history of the NBA.

The Celtics recorded a (67-15) regular season had lost a total of just three games in a four playoff season (against Chicago, Atlanta, Milwaukee and Houston).

I watched the Celtics survive Michael Jordan score 63 points for the Chicago Bulls in a double overtime playoff game. Michael was a legend but Bird canned the nickname ‘Larry the Legend’. The Bird Era in the year s015, Boston fans watched Tom Brady lead the New England Patriots to their fourth super bowl championship. We are fortunate in Boston to have watched Larry Bird and Tom Brady, play during an incredible thirty-year period 1985-2015.

Let the Games Begin!

Slapshots

The month of January is a big challenge for the defending NEC hockey champions. Coach Dale Dunbar’s team is young with only four seniors.

The Vikings play many promising freshman, sophomores and an experienced and talented group of juniors.

Freshman Sam Yarrow has scored two game winning goals. Sophs Steve Holgenson and Henry Brooks gained plenty of experience on a championship team. Soph Jake Adamson, Tyler Marley and Bryce Costin will give depth to the Vikings.

Junior standouts NEC all-star Charlie Page, Matt Tarantino, David Barry and Steve Rogers are experienced skaters.

The goal tending of junior Greg Gill has been outstanding. The Vikings face a tough month of the top teams in the Conference games with Gloucester, Beverly, Danvers, Peabody and a return match with Marblehead is a challenge. The Vikings hop to qualify for the MIAA Tourney. Let’s fill Larsen Rink to support another exciting Viking hockey team – 13 times NEC hockey champs!

Let the Games Begin!

WHS sports Years

10 years ago

January 5, 2005

The WHS girls basketball team bounced back from its first loss of the season, a 50-44 defeat to Jeremiah Burke of Boston, with a 72-27 rout of Revere. Freshman Courtney Finn lit up the scoreboard with 27 points and sophomore point guard Nicole Giaquinto added 23.

The WHS boys basketball team sandwiched a loss to St. Mary’s of Lynn with victories over Chelsea and Revere. Jason Griffin led the way in the Chelsea win with 15 points and Dave Segal added 14. In the Revere win, Anthony Giuliano led the way with 17 points. Vasily Mallios and Dan Mahoney scored 11 each.

Freshman Ricky Boudrow scored goals and Paul Eruzione added a goal and an assist to lead the WHS hockey team, which is 1-2 on the season, to a 5-2 victory over Lynn Classical.

20 years ago

January 11, 1996

The WHS hockey team stormed back from a 3-0 deficit to knock off previously-undefeated Danvers, 5-4. Ed Fidler scored three goals for the Vikings and Steve Calla and Dave Collins scored a goal apiece.

Sophomore Margo Souza scored 18 points to lead the WHS girls basketball team to a 46-28 win over Lynn English, ending a four-game losing streak for the Lady Vikings.

Lawone Bennett hit for 15 points and grabbed eight rebounds to lead the WHS boys basketball team to a 57-40 win over Lynn English as the Vikings, who now are 5-2, bounced back from a 66-56 loss to a 7-1 Swampscott squad.

30 years ago

January 15, 1986

Co-capt. Craig Nolan’s outstanding goaltending preserved a 2-2 tie for the WHS hockey team against Marblehead. Nolan had shut out Gloucester in a 4-0 Viking victory a few days previously.

Despite a 24 point effort by Sean Conway and 14 points from Warren MacPhail, the WHS boys basketball team dropped a 58-42 decision to Swampscott.

40 years ago

January 14, 1976

In a battle of unbeaten teams, the WHS boys basketball team defeated Marblehead, 62-52. Leading the way for Winthrop were Steve Demetriou, Billy English, Kevin Corkhum, and John Kalogeris. Winthrop now is 6-0 on the season.

Bobby Masterson scored the hat trick for the undefeated WHS hockey team in a 9-3 rout of Salem, which came on the heels of a 13-1 romp over Gloucester.

Karen Hill, playing in her first varsity game, scored 15 points to lead the WHS girls basketball team to a win over Marblehead. The Lady Vikings now are 6-2 for the season.

50 years ago

January 12, 1966

The newly-formed WHS hockey team continued to take its lumps in its first season as a varsity program with a 4-0 loss to Gloucester. Winthrop now is 0-6 for the season.

The WHS basketball dream stands at 3-0 after wins over Swampscott and Woburn. Kevin Shields, though standing at only 6’-1”, has taken over the role as the team’s pivotman and has responded well in the rebounding department. Billy McGillicuddy led Winthrop in scoring in both games with 14 and 16 points.

WHS star football player Ron Miles has been named to the All-Scholastic football teams by the Boston newspapers. Miles has followed in the footsteps of his brother Steve (WHS Class of 1952) as the recipient of this year’s Irving P. Alexander Memorial Trophy. Miles will be attending Princeton University in the fall. Brother Steve also is an Ivy League alum, having graduated from Cornell, where he played football for the Big Red.

Former WHS star lineman Phil Ratner has been named to the All-East football team as a defensive tackle. Ratner plays at Cornell.

60 years ago

January 12, 1956

The Winthrop High basketball team suffered its first loss of the season, 48-44 to Swampscott, but bounced back with a 59-46 triumph over Woburn.

70 years ago

January 10, 1946

Capt. Myron Atlas and Bobby Kelly both scored 12 points and Bomber Neal added nine to lead the WHS basketball team to a 40-25 win over Danvers in the season-opener.

100 years ago

January 15, 1916

Winthrop High easily defeated Chelsea 31-13 in an Interscholastic League basketball contest last week. Fielding, Talcott, and Sheehan excelled for the locals. Winthrop moved into first place with a 15-12 win over Quincy in one of the most exciting games to be played here in a long time. The spectacular shooting of Johnny Fielding was the big story for Winthrop.

The WHS hockey team defeated Boston Latin, 1-0, on Lewis Lake before a large gallery of fans.

WHS sports roundup

Girls hockey team

edges Belmont, 1-0

The Winthrop High Lady Bulldog hockey team defeated Belmont, 1-0, Monday evening in Belmont. Kelsey Griffiths lit the lamp for the lone goal of the contest in the first period when she grabbed a loose puck amidst a scramble in front of the Belmont net and fired home a shot that beat the Belmont goalie.

Winthrop goaltender Gretchen Howard (24 saves) and the Lady Bulldog defense made the lead stand up the rest of the way for the victory.

“Gretchen and our defense came through for us,” said WHS head coach Anthony Martucci. “We had a rough second period because of some penalties, but overall the team played well. However, we need to start scoring some more goals.”

The Lady Bulldogs previously had dropped a 4-1 decision Saturday to Shrewsbury at Larsen Rink. Griffiths once again notched the Winthrop tally.

Both Shrewsbury and Belmont are non-league opponents. Martucci and his crew, who now stand at 3-2 on the season, were set to return to their Northeast Hockey League schedule last night (Wednesday), taking on  Peabody. They will travel to Endicott College Saturday evening to tangle with perennial top NHL rival Belmont. They are off until the following Saturday when they host Masconomet at Larsen Rink.

WHS girls basketball

team is improving

Although the Winthrop High girls basketball team has yet to break into the win column, the Lady Vikings continue to improve under new head coach John Gambale.

Winthrop dropped a 57-44 decision to Saugus Tuesday that Gambale labeled as “our best game of the year. It was a lot closer than the final score might indicate. The girls are starting to catch on to the new system and I was very proud of how hard they played.”

Lady Viking Nina Bartlette, a contender for the NEC Player of the Year honors, turned in another double-double performance with 21 points and 18 rebounds. Nina has been averaging 20 points per game to go with a typical nightly effort of 18 rebounds.

“Nina has been tremendous all year and has been very supportive of her younger and less-experienced teammates,” said Gambale. “She’s very much a leader on our team.”

Francesca Capone added 10 points and Olivia Grillo chipped in six points in the Saugus contest.

During the vacation week the Lady Vikings dropped a pair of games in the Pope John Holiday Tournament, including a loss in overtime to the host Pope John squad.

Bartlette once again was a standout with 20 points and 18 rebounds.

“The team is working hard,” said Gambale. “They are a great group of girls and they are improving with every game.”

The Lady Vikings will face a pair of opponents from the North Division of the Northeastern Conference in the upcoming week when they trek to Lynn Classical Friday and host Danvers Tuesday.

Benson, Massa, Leone take first place for WHS track

Although the Winthrop High girls track team dropped a 49-37 decision to Saugus last week, a number of Lady Vikings turned in fine performances.

Holly Benson led a  Winthrop sweep of the 600 dash with a time of 1:51. Teammates Haley Holden (2:15.3) and Fiona MacPhail (2:15.5) grabbed second and third spots. MacPhail also scored for Winthrop with a third place in the high jump with a leap of 4’-3”.

The Lady Vikings also swept the two-mile run, paced by Christine Leone in 14:23. Zara Powell (17:13) and Kim McDuffe (17:49) were second and third.

Holly Benson cruised to victory in the 1000 dash with a clocking of 3:30. Teammate Olivia Rago grabbed third spot in 3:56.

Gianna Massa also earned first place honors in the shotput with a throw of 31’-0”. Gianna added a point to the Lady Viking cause with a third place effort in the 50 dash in 7.1 seconds.

Camila-Miranda Llovera scored three points for Winthrop with a second place performance in the mile with a time of 6:16. Mary Teixieira took third place in the same event in 7:11.

Other Lady Vikings who chipped in single points with third place performances were Lilibeth Morales in the 50 hurdles in 9.2 and Emily McGovern in the 300 dash in 49.8.

The Lady Vikings will meet Gloucester today (Thursday) and Swampscott next Thursday.

Four Vikings finish

first in Saugus meet

The Winthrop High boys indoor track team captured first places in four events in the team’s meet last week with Saugus. Devin Racow grabbed top spot in the 50 yard hurdles with a clocking of 8.6 seconds; Taylor St. George took first in the 300 dash in 43.1; Spencer Bosse won the mile in 6:13; and Will Holden topped the field in the two mile run in 11:28.

Other point-scorers for Winthrop with third-place performances were: Bosse in the high jump with a leap of 5’-0”; Andrew McGrail in the shotput with a toss of 33’-8”; and Jakob Hein in the 600 dash in 2:11.

Winthrop meets Gloucester today (Thursday) and Swampscott next Thursday.

WHS boys hockey

team defeats Saugus

The Winthrop High boys hockey team continued its winning ways with a 6-3 victory over Northeastern Conference rival Saugus Saturday at Larsen Rink. Senior captain Charlie Page and freshman Sam Yarrow both scored two goals for the Vikings, who won their third straight contest to improve to 4-2-1 on the season.

Winthrop was set to play at Beverly last night (Wednesday) and then will trek to Gloucester Saturday evening. The Vikings will stay on the road next Wednesday, traveling to Danvers.

Boys basketball hosts

Lynn Classical Friday

The Winthrop High boys basketball team will host Lynn Classical, a foe from the North Division of the Northeastern Conference, Friday evening. The Vikings will travel to Danvers, another NEC North rival, Tuesday.

Winthrop dropped a 71-53 decision to Saugus this past Tuesday evening.

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