Despite slow start, MV football optimistic
The Vineyarders played their second game of the season on Saturday, losing to a highly regarded Salem team 30-6. This was their second away nonconference game as well, following their close Sept. 10 loss to Sutton.
Coach Tony Mottola and the Vineyarders remain optimistic, however, due to their late start to the season and overall effort of the team. Coach Mottola was unable to lead practices until one month ago, due to on-Island housing issues, but stated, “The kids are playing really hard, and we are slowly learning the offensive and defensive schemes.” At the moment, the team is playing catch-up, but is “doing great and [working] hard every day to improve.”
The Vineyarders have their first home game of the season this Friday at 6 pm versus Monomoy.
Girls’ soccer dominates over the weekend
Coach Matthew Malowski’s varsity team played Dennis-Yarmouth on Thursday and Nantucket on Saturday, winning both by the scores of 8-2 and 8-1, respectively.
Both victories were overall team efforts. In both games, six different players scored goals, and four players had assists. Senior Josie Welch starred against Dennis-Yarmouth, with two goals and three assists to her name. Against Nantucket, the freshmen on the team showed their merit, accounting for five of the team’s goals, and three of its assists. The Coogan twins both scored, as did Eleanor Mone and Coach Malowski’s daughter, Reese.
On Tuesday, Sept. 20, girls varsity continued their winning streak, defeating Barnstable 4-0 at home. After the Vineyarders’ strong stretch, their record has risen to 4-2 on the season, with an impressive overall goal differential of +18.
The Vineyarders were scheduled to play Sturgis East at home on Wednesday at 4:15 pm.
Rematch against Nauset serves as litmus test for MV field hockey
The Vineyarders faced off against a strong Nauset team for the second time in eight days on Wednesday, Sept. 14, hoping to improve on their 7-0 away loss a week prior. The final score was 2-0 Nauset, but the Vineyarders had three more shots on goal, six more penalty corners, two more saves, and five fewer goals conceded this time around.
Coach Becky Nutton noted, “We had a more disciplined approach to defending their most threatening attacking players, and it paid off.” Coach Nutton lauded the team’s improvement, as well as a fantastic performance by goalie Reese McCracken, with 14 saves.
On Saturday, the Vineyarders played against rivals Nantucket away, losing a highly competitive game 1-2. MVRHS had three shots on goal, six penalty corners, and 11 saves. Sofia Balsas Fuentes scored a penalty stroke for the Vineyarders with 2.5 minutes left, but the Vineyarders were ultimately unable to tie it.
On Monday, they avenged themselves, beating Brockton 7-0 for the second time this season. Their record is now 2-4 overall, and 0-1 in-conference. Their next game is scheduled for Wednesday, Sept. 21, at home versus Sturgis East, at 3 pm.
Vineyard golf going strong
The Vineyarders had two matches this week, Thursday, Sept. 15, away at Sandwich, and Tuesday, Sept. 20, at home versus Falmouth.
The match against Sandwich was a nail-biter, ending in a 249 to 251 loss for MVRHS. This marked the Vineyarders’ first loss of the season. Coach Doug DeBettencourt was very satisfied with his team’s performance, however, considering that Sandwich had home field advantage on a tough course, and placed third in the state last year.
On Tuesday, the Vineyarders bounced back against the Falmouth Clippers, winning 245 to 268. Senior and team tri-captain Nick BenDavid shot a 38, only three over par. Other strong performances from seniors Jake Glasgow and tri-captain Richie Combra helped lead the Vineyarders to their fifth victory of the season.
This week has further cemented Coach DeBettencourt’s belief in his varsity team. Built around a corps of seniors, DeBettencourt says that he’s hopeful about “qualifying for States, and going deep into the playoffs.” Vying for the league championship, the Vineyarders sit 5-1 overall, and 3-1 within their division.
Weather permitting, the Vineyarders will face off against Nauset away on Thursday, and at home versus Cardinal Spellman on Monday at 2:45.
Boys’ soccer put to test versus Barnstable
Going into Tuesday’s game against an undefeated Barnstable team, the Vineyarders had won their first three games against Sandwich (Sept. 9), Dennis-Yarmouth (Sept. 15), and Nantucket (Sept. 17) without conceding a single goal, scoring seven of their own.
Coach John Walsh credits his team’s successful start to their style of play. They prioritize ball possession and team defense, in part due to the team’s skill set. Words that come to mind for Walsh’s players are “small,” “fast,” and “skilled.” Compared with other teams, the Vineyarders are typically outmuscled, so they use their advanced speed and ball skills to keep the ball away from opponents and control play. Walsh also loves how wise, coachable, and utilitarian his players are, because the small size of the Island forces young soccer players to learn all positions.
Against Barnstable, the Vineyarders were unable to stick to their game plan. According to Walsh, they had “too many turnovers,” and “a hard time controlling midfield.” Furthermore, they were missing senior captain Ryan Koster (concussion), who has been playing center back for MVRHS. The Red Hawks ended up winning 3-1, handing MV their first loss of the season. Arthur DaSilva scored for the Vineyarders, assisted by his twin brother Kaio.
Boys’ soccer plays against Sturgis West on Thursday at 3, and Saturday at 11:30. Both games will be played at home.
Cross-country defeats Sandwich
Martha’s Vineyard cross-country had a dual meet against Sandwich on Tuesday, Sept. 20. Across the board, the Vineyarders had solid outings.
Daniel DaSilva (first place overall), Daniel Serpa (second), Broden Vincent (fourth), Linus Munn (fifth), and Sampson Mallory (ninth) scored for the Vineyard boys. It was Mallory’s (freshman) very first race on varsity. For the two captains, it was a photo finish, with DaSilva (17:41) edging out Serpa by one-tenth of a second.
Alexa Schroeder (first place overall), Wren Christy (second), and Eloise Christy (third) swept the top three placements for the Vineyarders. They were the only Vineyard girls to race for varsity this meet.
The Vineyarders will race in the Ocean State Invitational on Saturday, in Warwick, R.I. With a 20-second personal best from Vincent (19:23) and season bests from Wren (20:08) and Eloise Christy (23:18), the Vineyarders head into Saturday on a strong note.