WHS Sports Roundup

Boys Lacrosse Tops Peabody

The Winthrop High boys lacrosse team earned a solid 11-4 victory over Peabody last Thursday at Miller Field.

Sophomore Seth Sacco scored four goals to lead the Viking offense.

“Seth has been having a bust-out year at midfield,” said WHS head coach Brian Donnelly. “He also is one of our main faceoff guys and has been increasingly playing defense. His workload and effort have been amazing this year and I can’t say how much it helps our team in all facets of the game.”

Ace Daignault scored another hat trick for the Vikings.

“Ace continues to be a menace on our ride, which gives himself and others many more opportunities,” noted Donnelly.

Junior Luke Githinji started at attack and was able to find the back of the Tanners’ net for two goals early in the game.

“We’re getting Luke more reps and looks and he has been great, growing both his confidence in handling the ball and giving other guys solid rest,” said Donnelly.

“It was good to get a decisive victory,” Donnelly added. “It felt good to be in control of most of the game.”

This past Monday the Vikings took on Swampscott, their chief rival in the South Division of the Northeastern Conference, in hopes of avenging an 8-5 loss earlier in the season. However, Winthrop came up short, 12-11.

“The Swampscott game was another huge battle that unfortunately didn’t go our way,” said Donnelly. “We were in control of the game through the first three quarters with some excellent goaltending from Hunter Fife, who had over 20 saves on the game, and strong defense from our core group of Donovan Cassidy, Daniel Thomai, Sean Dolan, and Colin O’ Leary.”

Winthrop held a five-goal lead heading into the fourth period, thanks primarily to four goals from Ace Daignault and a pair of goals from Colin Cifuni and Seth Sacco.

“Our guys were all over the field, winning the majority of the ground ball battles,” said Donnelly. “Senior captain Robert Rich played well, creating opportunities for the guys around him, getting three assists and a goal on the day.

“However, ultimately we took the gas off the pedal in the fourth and tried to protect our lead rather than continue to trust the systems,” said Donnelly. “Swampscott was able to rally back off some nice play from their long pole midfielder and found the back of our net in a fourth quarter breakdown.

“Overall, we have to put the tough loss behind us, learn from our mistakes, and continue to grow on what we are doing well,” said the coach. “We are really proud of how the guys are progressing and we’re looking forward to the second half of the season.”

The Vikings are scheduled to journey to non-league opponent Tyngsborough today (Thursday) and will trek to NEC North foe Masconomet on Monday and then further north to NEC South rival Gloucester next Thursday.

WHS Girls Track Defeats Danvers

The Winthrop High girls outdoor track and field team continued its impressive 2024 season with a 70-66 victory over Danvers this past Monday.

The Lady Vikings dominated the three throwing events, capturing 23 of the possible 27 points. Anastasia Gajica took first place in the discus with a spin of 63′-7″ and took second in the shot-put. Teammate Daniela Gomez won the shot-put with a toss of 23′-10″ and finished third in the discus.

Reese Brodin (who also took third place in the 200 dash) won the javelin with a throw of 82′-2″. Teammate April Ferguson (who also finished third in the 1-mile) took second spot in the jav. Iris Clancy earned a point with a third-place performance in the shot.

Arianna Cappuccio won the long jump with a leap of 16′-5″ and took second in the 100 meter dash to score eight points for the Winthrop cause.

The Lady Viking 2-mile trio of Beatrice Colombarini (15:12.4), Bailey Ferguson (15:13.8), and Annabelle Giardino (16:07) swept their Danvers opponents to add nine points to the Winthrop side of the scoresheet.

Hailey DeMarco took top spot in the 800 event with a time of 2:58.7, finishing well ahead of her Danvers rivals by 23 seconds.

In the 100 hurdles, Shannon Abbott took second place (Shannon also finished third in both the high jump and the long jump). In the 400 hurdles, Hailey DeMarco grabbed second and Jillian Buonopane finished third.

Lylah Cassidy added three important points to the winning effort with a second place in the triple jump and Mary Healy did likewise with a second place in the high jump.

Gabriela Currier scored a point with a third place in the 400 dash.

“Led by Arianna (for the girls) and Nick Cappuccio (for the boys), both of our track teams continue to be the most improved teams in the Northeastern Conference,” said long-time WHS track coach Warren MacPhail. “Arianna and Nick are their teams’ leading point-scorers and are doing an amazing job leading our teams.”

Cappuccio Wins Three Events for WHS Boys Track

Although the Winthrop High boys outdoor track and field team came up short by a score of 76-60 in its meet last week against Danvers, a number of Vikings turned in impressive performances.

Nick Cappuccio led the way for Winthrop with three first-place finishes. Nick sped to victory in the 100 dash with a sprint of 11.0; captured the 200 dash with a time of 22.9; and won the long jump with a leap of 21′-0″. Cappuccio also added three points to his meet-high total of 18 points with a second-place performance in the discus.

Lorenzo Prevosti was a double-winner for Winthrop, taking the 2-mile run with a clocking of 12:25.7 and the 800 in a time of 2:11.8.

A number of other Vikings also won their respective individual events: Thomas D’Amico in the triple jump with a final landing of 36′-7.5″; George Galuris in the javelin with a throw of 142′-5″, a mark that topped his Danvers opponents by more than 30 feet; and Gabriel Perez captured the 1-mile with a time of 5:26 in which he edged his nearest Falcon opponent by just 0.8 of a second.

Adding three points to the Winthrop scoresheet with second-place finishes were Liam Kenney in the 400 dash and Owen Nargi in the 400 hurdles.

Contributing single points with third-place efforts were: Thomas D’Amico in the 400 dash; Liam Natareno in the 1-mile; and Aaron Armitstead in the 110 hurdles.

Viking baseball looks to get back on track

The Winthrop High baseball team will be seeking to revive its offense after dropping its past six contests, the most recent of which were a 4-0 loss to a very solid Salem team and a 3-2 defeat at Ipswich.

“Over the last five games or so, our offense has been in a rut,” said head coach Mark DeGregorio. “We have been able to get on base, but we have been unable to execute and get guys in from scoring position.”

In the encounter with Salem, starting pitcher Matthew Reardon, who was coming back after a very good pitching performance against Gloucester a few days previously, once again pitched well, but Viking miscues in the field allowed the Witches to jump out to a 3-0 lead early in the game.

“It has been something that has been happening far more than we would like, as we have been putting ourselves in a hole early in the games,” noted DeGregorio. “Despite that, Matthew was throwing the ball pretty well.”

However, with Reardon having a high pitch count through the first few innings, DeGregorio brought in Jay Fotiades in the third with Winthrop trailing 4-0, of which only one run was earned.

Fotiades tossed four frames of shutout ball the rest of the way, fanning six Salem opponents.

“Jay was masterful over those four innings,” said Fotiades. “Salem was unable to adjust to Jay’s off-speed and he kept them off-balance, which was pretty remarkable to see.”

Unfortunately, the Vikings were unable to score any runs over the last few innings despite having scoring opportunities.  Winthrop left the bases loaded in the sixth inning and Petey Silverman was thrown out at home on a contact play, which stopped any potential rallies.

“It was a tough game for us,” said Degregorio. “We believe that we can compete against Salem and are looking forward to another matchup at home later in the season.”

The Vikings then had four days off before their makeup game against Ipswich. 

“It was a good time for the coaches and players to assess currently where we were at in the season and try to figure out what we could do to improve and fix some of our weaknesses,” said DeGregorio. “As a coach I am a true believer in the statement that ‘players win games, coaches lose them.’  So as a coaching staff we had to try and figure out what we could do to put our players in the best chance to win and execute.

“We revamped some of our practices and changed some approaches to try and see if we could make the adjustments necessary leading up to that game,” DeGregorio said. “I personally believe that we had our three best practices leading up to Ipswich and confidence was at an all-time high for the program.

“We knew going in we were going to hand the ball to Matthew Reardon because his pitch count was so low in the previous game,” DeGregorio continued. “We started out the game i the exact way we drew it up beforehand.”

Silverman led off the game with a base hit and stole second on the first pitch. After he was bunted to third,  Phil Boncore hit a sacrifice fly to right field to give Winthrop a quick 1-0 advantage, the first lead for the Vikings in a while. 

Unfortunately, the lead proved short-lived, as Ipswich was able to get a run across in the bottom half of the first.

“They did a good job of being aggressive on the bases,” said DeGregorio. “This is what makes the two programs similar.  We both play a very similar style of baseball.”

Reardon settled down over the next two innings and both teams went scoreless until the fourth inning, when Ipswich was able to put two across for a 3-1 advantage that the Tigers held going into the top of the sixth.

The Vikings, who had their leadoff man on base in five of the seven innings, drew within 3-2 in the sixth with an RBI base hit from Silverman, driving in Matthew Noonan, who had led off with a double. But that would prove to be as close as the Vikings would get on the day. Spencer Parco had a nice day at the plate, going 3-for-3 with a stolen base.

DeGregorio and his crew have a challenging week ahead. They were set to play at Masconomet yesterday (Wednesday) and will host Wakefield tomorrow (Friday) and Sharon on Saturday afternoon at 3:30 before traveling to the Frank DeFelice Diamond at Swampscott on Monday.

Winthrop JV Baseball Enjoying Fine Season

The Winthrop High freshman/JV baseball program has been enjoying a fine season with a collective 9-3 record between the group. 

The fledgling Vikings have received some great pitching performances from Braedon Lounsbury, who is an up-and-coming eighth grader, along with Nikita Rossi, Dominic Spinale, Desmond Cassidy, and Ryan Murphy.

“We are very excited about the arms that we have coming up through the program,” said WHS head coach Mark DeGregorio.

Some of the eighth graders and freshmen who have excelled this year on the field and with the bat are Michael D’Ambrosio, Nate Previte, Ricky Mackenzie, Tony Bordonaro, Carmen DiPrisco, Braylon Ancillo, and Joe Dalton.

The teams also have received some nice contributions from Jace Periera, Aiden Exum, Evan Tallent, Dax Sabin, Stephen Barron, Dan Connolly, and Donovan Wein. 

“That list doesn’t include freshman Joseph Pumphret, who primarily plays with varsity and has begun to become a key contributor to the varsity program,” noted DeGregorio.

 “It is safe to say that we are very excited about the direction of the program and the future.  It is very bright to say the least,” DeGregorio added.

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