One up, two down for Island skaters
The Martha's Vineyard boys hockey team reached the halfway point of the season, playing three games in four nights.
Call it the story of the good, the bad, and the respectable.
The Islanders started the week with their finest effort of the season against Bridgewater-Raynham, followed that with perhaps their worst against archrivals Hanover, and finished up with a hard-fought but tough loss to division one Framingham.
Last Wednesday night, the Vineyarders completed a home and home sweep of the Bridgewater-Raynham Trojans with a resounding 5-0 victory at Bridgewater Arena.
Photos by Ralph Stewart
Tad Gold lit the lamp for a hat trick, with Chris Davies and Matt Flynn chipping in a goal apiece. Trey Rasmussen had two assists and Mike Capen stopped 16 shots.
"It was an absolute team effort," head coach Matt Mincone said. "That's textbook hockey, the way we want them to play it. We skated the whole game."
Such was not the case two nights later in Hanover. The Indians, motivated, no doubt, by Martha's Vineyard's three-game sweep last season, came out firing and put Martha's Vineyard in a two-goal hole.
Jock Cooperrider and Darren Gazaille got Martha's Vineyard level in period two, but Hanover won it with 1:49 left in the game.
"Not one player played decent; they overlooked the whole game," Coach Mincone said. "Hanover played with heart."
"The rival games you have to get up for because they are up for you."
Saturday night at the Martha's Vineyard Arena, the Vineyarders faced powerful Framingham High.
The Flyers, a solid division one program, were four lines deep and used to playing top-flight competition every game.
The Vineyarders needed their 'A' game to win this one. They got high marks indeed for effort, but fell short on execution in a 4-1 loss.
The first period was terrific - fast, exciting, and hard-hitting. The Flyers tormented Martha's Vineyard on the opening shift, swarming around goalie Mike Capen and drawing a Henry Smith penalty.
The Vineyarders killed the penalty with aplomb and followed that with an impressive power play, but the period would end scoreless.
Framingham's Kyle Donnelly scored 49 seconds into the second, but Colby Gouldrup answered two minutes later for Martha's Vineyard, slapping in a feed from Darren Gazaille after Chris Davies clanged a shot off the post.
Strangely enough, the Vineyarders played some of their best hockey with experienced defenders Matt Flynn and David Flanders in the box serving matching roughing and misconduct penalties.
Gouldrup and Brooks Billingham stepped up and did yeoman work.
The Flyers closed out the period up 2-1, however, after Tyler Byrne scooped a high backhander over Capen's shoulder.
Try as they did in the final period, the Islanders' consistent pressure never drew further reward. Too many Vineyard shots floated harmlessly into Flyer goalie's Cam Chassie's chest.
Framingham weathered the storm and added two more goals to put the game away.
Martha's Vineyard outshot Framingham 26-24.
"It was a good effort, but we made too many defensive mistakes in our zone," Coach Mincone said.
Three Flyers goals came from rebounds after Mike Capen made the initial save.
Martha's Vineyard (6-3-1) next plays in Gloucester on Saturday night, hoping to avenge one of their two losses from last season.
Coach Mincone is hoping for consistency the rest of the way. "We keep taking five steps up, then six down," he said.
Following the Framingham loss, the coach also wanted his players to raise their expectations. "Our guys were like, 'We skated with them [Framingham], that's good.' No, it's not good. I didn't put them on the schedule to lose. This is a good time for us to have a little humble pie and go and win out the rest of the season."
The Martha's Vineyard boys varsity basketball team suffered another close defeat Monday night at home to Somerset, 59-54.
The Purple fell to 3-7 on the season. Six of those seven losses have been by five points or less.
The latest setback was a coach's nightmare, especially in the first half, when fundamentals went out the window in favor of prime time excitement and individual feats of daring.
The crucial factor was that in the second half, Somerset settled down and got back to basics, implementing a more patient half-court game. They passed well around the perimeter and dominated the offensive glass.
The Vineyarders stuck to the run and gun at their peril. Martha's Vineyard played as if they were working with a ten-second shot clock, which created non-stop excitement under the hoop, but not necessarily good basketball.
Still, the Vineyarders led almost the entire first half and were in the game right to the end.
Steve Handy was the main reason. He hit three-pointers, reverse lay-ups, fade-away jumpers, you name it, for a game high 24 points.
Vineyard head coach Mike Joyce summed up his team's troubles after the game.
"We have a quick group of guys that can get up and down the court, but they just don't do it five at a time, the whole time and they're sloppy with the ball. They're still playing summer league basketball and that doesn't work when you play high school basketball. Other teams are disciplined and they attack those mistakes."
Friday, at Old Rochester the Vineyarders stormed back from an early 16-point hole, but lost 76-71.
Mark Reppert finished with 24 points and 10 rebounds. Steve Handy and Jess Swaringen scored 10 points each.
Coach Jason O' Donnell's jayvee squad fared far better last week, winning in Mattapoisett against Old Rochester on Friday 77-45 and topping Somerset 67-51 at the Sancy on Monday to improve to 6-2.
Shane Schofield (18 points), Delmont Araujo (12), and Jeff Duarte (10) paced Martha's Vineyard against ORR as the visitors put the Bulldogs away with a 34-3 spot in quarter three.
Against Somerset, T.J. VanGerven excelled for Martha's Vineyard with 16 points and 14 rebounds. Lamar Moreis and Shane Schofield each scored 10.
The varsity, jayvees, and freshman all hosted Wareham late yesterday.
The varsity girls finally had a game to cheer about again after they rallied to beat Somerset 54-40, Monday.
The road win was sweet revenge against the Lady Raiders who beat Martha's Vineyard at the buzzer last week.
The Vineyarders (2-7) overturned a 24-22 halftime deficit and surged ahead with a 21-point fourth quarter.
Head Coach Lisa Stewart was pleased with her team's overall effort. "It was a great game," she said. "Our defense was swarming. We switched to 1-3-1 to shut down their best players."
The Martha's Vineyard offense, so dormant against Old Rochester on Friday, was in fine form against Somerset. It was also unselfish, posting 14 assists.
Katie Hines paced the Martha's Vineyard attack with 15 points and raided the Raiders with seven steals.
Kia Minor returned to the line-up by scoring 13 points, hauling down 11 rebounds, and grabbing six steals
Jillian Sedlier had 11 points, Erin Morris scored nine, and Alicia Oliveira added a bucket and nine steals.
Friday against Old Rochester, Martha's Vineyard just couldn't find their offensive touch in a 35-25 home loss.
The Bulldogs won the game from the charity stripe in the fourth quarter, hitting seven of ten shots to pull away.
In the jayvee game, Martha's Vineyard broke open a close game in the second half to down ORR, 26-18.
Sarah Williston scored 14 points to lead Martha's Vineyard, who improved to 4-4. Hanna Persson had five points and Alex Mark had four. Kat Todd scored three points and was a standout on the defensive glass.
The jayvees continued their good form with two wins over Somerset on Saturday and Monday. In the first game, the visiting Vineyarders, all freshmen themselves, played great team defense and romped over the Raiders' freshmen team, 42-28. Kat Todd scored 12 points and grabbed 10 rebounds. Hanna Persson had 15 points and Sarah Williston 11.
Monday, Martha's Vineyard prevailed 39-35. Hanna Persson (11 points), Sarah Williston (10), and Alex Mark (8) led on the scoresheet. Meghan McHugh was tough on defense.
Both the varsity and jayvees played at Wareham late yesterday.
Weekend sweep for girls travel team
The Martha's Vineyard girls Cape Cod Youth League basketball team improved to 5-2 with victories over Harwich and Sandwich this weekend.
The squad is comprised of seventh- and eighth-graders from all four elementary schools and the Charter School.
Jenny Lindland scored nine points in a 34-13 win at Harwich on a stormy Saturday. Tiana Souza finished with six points. Maggie Riseborough, Kat DeBettencourt, and Rae Filley all had five points, while Kendall Robinson, Katie Stewart, and Alayna Hutchinson chipped in a bucket each.
Against Sandwich at the Oak Bluffs School Sunday afternoon, Martha's Vineyard led throughout and held on for an exciting 35-29 win. The home side was up 18-13 at halftime and threatened to blow the game open in the second session, leading by as many as 11 points, but Sandwich gamely hung on.
Jenny Lindland was dominant at both ends of the court, pouring in 23 points. Tiana Souza and Katie Stewart each had four points. Hayley Maciel scored one bucket and Kendall Robinson sank a pair of free throws.
Martha's Vineyard plays that rare basketball away and home doubleheader on Sunday, first traveling over to Falmouth for a 10:20 am game, then returning to host Harwich in a 1:30 pm matinee at the Oak Bluffs School.
Nan Rheault tourney this weekend
The Martha's Vineyard Regional High School girls varsity and junior varsity teams host the 8th annual Nan Rheault Invitational Tournament this weekend at the Martha's Vineyard Arena.
The action gets underway Saturday afternoon, beginning with the junior varsity contests at 1 pm and 2:15, featuring Martha's Vineyard, Newton North, Needham, and Mt. St. Charles Academy of Rhode Island.
Peabody takes the ice to play Cathedral High of Boston at 5 pm and The Vineyarders skate against defending champion Wilmington at 7 pm.
The tournament concludes Sunday starting with the jayvee consolation game at 9:30 am, followed by the jayvee championship at 10:40, the varsity consolation game at noon, and the varsity championship at 1:30 pm.
The Martha's Vineyard varsity girls played thrice last week and earned their first point of the season in a 2-2 tie at Westwood. Shelby Ives tallied with the assist to Alexa Fisher, and freshman Maggie Johnson scored her first varsity goal.
They failed to score in their next two games against Pembroke/Whitman-Hanson and Quincy, but the bright spot was unquestionably the play of defenseman Emily Smith who stepped in for the injured Jaime Forend and played her first-ever game as a goalie. She stopped 22 of 26 Quincy shots.
RCBL week two
Warriors 122, Knicks 93
Jade Cash (30 points), Tim Scott (29), and Matt Rivers (25) were unstoppable as the 2-0 Warriors won the battle of the RCBL newcomers Monday night at the Martha's Vineyard Boys and Girls Club. Scott drained seven three-pointers and Rivers had 11 boards to post a double-double.
Five Knicks scored in double figures. James Holenko had 25 points, Tyson Lippincott (17), Ken Magnuson (14), Caleb Costas (12), and Chris Bager (10).
Heat 85, Bulls 63
Jason Dyer scored 25 points and Sterling Bishop 24 more to lead the Heat. Former Vineyard high school heroes Nick Viera and Bubba Brown put up 14 and 12 points respectively and Damon Mello rounded out the balanced attack with 12 of his own.
Jason O' Donnell led the Bulls with 18 points, followed by Mike Joyce (15), and Clark Agnew (14). Both teams stand at 1-1 along with the idle Lakers.
The highlight of the weekend belonged to the Martha's Vineyard Squirts, who journeyed to the Dunkin Donuts Center in Providence on Saturday to play a mini game against a team from Connecticut in front of 7,000 fans and 150 Vineyarders.
In Nantucket, however, the Martha's Vineyard Cape and Islands squirts fell prey to the Noreasters, losing 5-0 and 7-0.
Zach Fullin weathered the storm admirably in net. JJ Mendez, Justin Alexander, and Saige Araujo were standouts in game one, while Kylie Hatt, Alex Figueroa, Belle Dining, Auguste Pizzano and Brahmin Thurber excelled in game two. Colin Buckley, who suffered a broken ankle, got an extra star for his tough, intense efforts.
The Martha's Vineyard Bantams and Martha's Vineyard PeeWees played at the NVL Arena in Foxboro on Saturday. The Bantams battled Barnstable to a 2-2 tie, but the PeeWees had a rough time in a 10-0 loss to KP Walpole.
Fly tying classes begin
The Martha's Vineyard Rod & Gun Club's fly-tying classes and informal winter fishing-gab session begins Monday at 7 pm and will continue every Monday through March.
Beginners and experienced tiers are welcome. There is a $15 registration charge and $5 charge per class. Due to construction on the rod and gun clubhouse, classes are at the Anchors senior center in Edgartown near Memorial Wharf. For more information, call Cooper Gilkes at 508-627-8202.