WHS Football Team Plays at Hamilton-Wenham
The Winthrop High football team will trek to Hamilton-Wenham this Saturday in the first game of the non-qualifying bracket of the MIAA’s state playoff tournament format The opening kickoff is set for 2:45.
Both Winthrop and Hamilton finished out-of-the-money in the playoff chase with 2-5 records. Hamilton was the ninth seed and Winthrop the 10th in the final computation of the so-called power ratings utilized by the MIAA.
However, like appearances, records also can be deceiving, and such is the case for both the Vikings and the Generals (who are so named in honor of Hamilton native son General George S. Patton).
Winthrop, despite predominantly playing a schedule against larger schools, battled well in almost every game this season and was just a point short of qualifying for the tourney. Winthrop dropped a 14-13 decision to a 7-0 Danvers team that is ranked 11th in the state and is the number one seed in the Division 3 North Sectional.
Had the Vikings successfully either converted a two-point conversion or made a late field goal in their battle with the Falcons, they would have vaulted into the playoff picture.
Winthrop’s other four losses also were to playoff-bound teams, Lynn Classical, Lynn English, and Beverly, all in D-3, and Swampscott in D-5. Based on the strength of their opponents’ records, the Vikings had the most-difficult schedule of any team in the NEC.
Hamilton-Wenham likewise, found itself just a point shy of reaching the playoffs after falling to a 6-1 Lynnfield team, 27-26, last week. Hamilton-Wenham played well in another closely-fought defeat, 28-22, to Pentucket.
“Hamilton-Wenham has had a season that has been very similar to ours,” said WHS head coach Jon Cadigan. “They had some tough, narrow losses and probably are stronger than some of the teams that did qualify for the playoffs.”
The Vikings and the Generals have had some recent history. In 2014, Winthrop took the measure of H-W, 14-0, in the playoffs. In 2015, Winthrop came out on top, 26-6, in a non-playoff encounter.
The Vikings are coming off a loss this past week to Lynn English, a team that has been ranked in the top 20 in the state at various times this season.
The Bulldogs scored on the opening drive of the game, but the Vikings, as they have all season, responded with a TD march of their own, culminating with a touchdown pass on a fourth-and-12 from sophomore quarterback Mike Chaves to junior Chris Ferrara. Ferrara took over at the receiver position in place of Austin Daigneault, who was injured on the first play of the game with a dislocated shoulder.
That left matters at 7-6 (the Winthrop PAT attempt hit the upright) entering the second period.
But then, in the proverbial blink of an eye, the Bulldogs took command on just two plays — a return for a touchdown of the ensuing Winthrop kick-off and then a pick-six on first down of the next Winthrop possession — to vault into a 21-6 advantage.
However, both the Vikings and their sophomore quarterback, Mike Chaves, remained undaunted, and embarked on a TD drive to cut the lead to 21-13. The Chaves-Ferrara connection once again accounted for the Viking score, this time on a 33-yard pass play.
However, that would prove to be as close as the Vikings would get the rest of the way. English took full control thereafter, scoring two more touchdowns before the end of the half, en route to an eventual 48-20 triumph. Winthrop’s third touchdown of the day came on a four yard run by Ricky Rosado.
“Lynn English is a very good team,” said Cadigan afterwards. “They played better than us in all three phases of the game.”
Bryan Conceição once again earned the Black Shirt Award for the top defensive effort by a Viking. “Bryan gives 100 percent every time he is on the field,” said Cadigan. “He’s truly one of the top players in the Northeastern Conference.”
The coach also had words of praise for his soph quarterback, Chaves, who had a nice day with 14-of-21 passing for well over 100 yards.
“Mike simply shook off the pick-six and went right back to work,” said Cadigan. “He displayed great leadership and confidence.”
WHS Girls Soccer Wins Two Contests
The Winthrop High girls soccer team concluded its regular season this past week with a pair of victories.
Coach Tracey Martucci’s crew defeated Lynn English, 4-1, last Friday and then rolled past Charlestown this past Monday.
Lady Viking junior Maura Dorr continued to add to her all-time WHS goal scoring mark with a hat trick in the win over English. Speedy sophomore Nora McCarey also reached the back of the net for Winthrop. Mia Martucci, Alex Gibbons, and Grace Galuris were credited with assists.
In a 7-0 triumph over Charlestown, Dorr scored two goals. Isabel Skomro, Mia Martucci, Devon Barry, Emma Holmes, and senior Colby Bosse all reached the back of the Charlestown net.
Nora McCarey, Mia Martucci, Maura Dorr, and Isabella Ferullo picked up assists on the day.
“I’m so proud of how we progressed this season,” said head coach Martucci. “Games that we struggled with at the beginning of the season, we handled much better the second time around. “
Martucci and her crew, who punched their ticket for a Journey to the Tourney earlier in the season, now await word of their seeding and first-round pairing in the upcoming MIAA state soccer tournament. That announcement is expected to be made tomorrow (Friday).
Tourney Spot on the Line for Boys Soccer
The Winthrop High boys soccer team will be vying for a berth in the post-season state tournament when they trek to Arlington Catholic today (Thursday). Coach Kyle Gagin and his crew need a win or a tie in order to punch their ticket for a Journey to the Tourney.
If the Vikings accomplish that goal, they will await the announcement of their seeding and first-round opponent for the tourney later this week.
Winthrop had an opportunity to qualify for the tourney on Monday when they traveled to Framingham to take on Keefe Tech, but came up short by a score of 2-1.
Keefe grabbed an early 1-0 lead, but Winthrop brought the contest back to level before the end of the first half when junior John Langone headed a ball to Marco Torghele, who delivered the ball into the back of the Keefe net for his sixth goal of the season.
However, Keefe Tech scored midway through the second half and hung on for the win.
Last Wednesday evening the Vikings celebrated their Senior Night in appropriate fashion with a 5-1 victory over Saugus. Prior to the start of the contest, the team honored their seven senior members, Kevin Dorr, Kim Haddar, Samir Hadria, Abdul Hamada, Keidi Kraja, Chris Lopez, and Marco Torghele, in recognition of their contributions to the WHS boys soccer program.
The teams battled to a scoreless duel through the first half, but Winthrop erupted for five unanswered goals after the intermission. Torghele led the offensive surge with two goals, while Haddar, Hamada, and freshman Esteban Alvarez added a goal apiece. Alvarez also had two assists and Hamada earned one.
“These seniors have worked hard throughout their careers,” said Gagin. “I’m glad they could finish Senior Night with a big win.”
WHS Volleyball to Face Lowell Catholic in Tourney
The Winthrop High volleyball team will open play in the Division 3 North Sectional of the MIAA state volleyball tournament this evening (Thursday) when the Lady Vikings travel to Lowell Catholic for a 6:30 encounter.
Winthrop enters the D-3 North as the ninth seed with a 10-8 record. Lowell Catholic is the eighth seed with a 13-7 mark. If the Lady Vikings are successful this evening, they will move on to the quarterfinals where they will meet the number one seed, Mystic Valley. That match is scheduled for Monday at Mystic Valley at 6 p.m.
Winthrop wrapped up its regular season and celebrated Senior Night in fitting fashion with a 3-1 victory over Lynn English last Wednesday.
Prior to the contest, the Lady Vikings honored their four seniors, captain Vita Begoli, Maddy McKay, Alex Vera, and Arlette Ordonez, for their contributions to WHS volleyball.
“They have dedicated their time and effort to the volleyball program over the past four years,” said WHS co-head coach Rachel DelSolio.
The team also recognized Lily Dias, a student from Brazil who came to Winthrop for a semester abroad program.
“Lily was an asset to our team this year,” noted DelSolio.
Senior Maddy McKay turned in a superb performance against English and was named the Player of the Game.
“Maddy put in a lot of effort and never gave up the entire match,” said DelSolio. “The Lynn English coach came up to me after the game and said that he is so impressed by our team. He said we never give up and always push ourselves to do our best. He also commended Lily Dias on her hitting and Vita Begoli, our libero, on her strong defensive play.”