MVRHS swimmers represent the Island at States
This weekend, Coach Jen Passafiume traveled with her five best swimmers to Boston to compete at the Division II State Championships at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Senior Christian Flanders, senior Nathan Cuthbert, junior Emmett Silva, junior Andy Carr, and sophomore Kaua DeAssis represented the Island proudly.
All season long, the Vineyarders were led by Flanders, who bore down and competed in four events on Sunday. Starting with the individual 50-yard freestyle, Flanders finished in 23.55 seconds, good for 20th place. On short rest, Flanders also raced in the individual 100-yard freestyle, coming in 16th at 51.75 seconds, achieving a personal record in the process.
Next up were the 200-yard and 400-yard freestyle races, with Cuthbert swimming the opening leg for the Vineyard in both races, followed by Silva, DeAssis, and finally Flanders at anchor (Carr served as an alternate and de facto assistant coach).
In the 200, Emmett (24.24) and DeAssis (23.82) went off for personal best split times, and the Vineyarders finished 10th overall, scoring 14 points in the process. In the 400, Emmett (55.48) and DeAssis (54.54) achieved personal split times once again, and Cuthbert and Flanders vigorously capped off their high school careers.
For Cuthbert and Flanders, Coach Jen Passafiume has been coaching them since they were five and six.
“It’s been pretty amazing watching them grow up and turn into the star swimmers they have become,” Passafiume said. “I’ve watched them both from the beginning… I remember back when Nathan didn’t even like putting his face in the water.”
Out of 45 teams present, and 38 that scored, the Vineyarders finished 27th overall in the state. Considering they only qualified to compete in four events, the Vineyarders did an amazing job. “It was a really great way to end the season!” remarked Coach Passafiume. As for next year, she stated, “I am hoping to recruit some new swimmers and see the team grow, [and] I am looking forward to seeing the returning swimmers continue to improve.”
Short-handed, indoor track athletes triumph at State Championships
On Thursday, the Vineyarders traveled to Roxbury to compete in the Division V State Championships. Originally scheduled to compete in nine different events, last-minute injuries to star seniors Daniel da Silva and Eloise Christy threw things in a loop for Coach Joe Schroeder’s squad. But despite the setbacks, the Vineyarders still managed two medals, and three personal records.
Two of MVRHS’ best performances came from senior distance runners Adrienne Christy and Daniel Serpa. “They had the best races they’ve ever run,” stated Coach Schroeder.
In the two-mile run, Christy achieved a school record with a time of 11:44.43, good for the silver medal finish. She was less than three seconds from winning gold. In the 1,000m run, Serpa also achieved a personal record, finishing in 2:36.64, good for fourth place.
Christy and Serpa had qualified for a couple other events (1,000m, one-mile; 600m, respectively), but considering the change of plans, Schroeder told them to “go all out” in one race apiece, and they delivered.
Meanwhile, MVRHS’ best placement came in the form of sophomore Camille Brand’s 5′ 2″ gold-medal performance in the high jump. Brand not only tied her school record, but was also the second female indoor track athlete in school history to win an event at States. Furthermore, she was jumping without the familiar company of Eloise Christy.
The Vineyarders also competed in the girls’ shot put and the 4x200m relay. In the shot put, sophomore Madison Mello placed tenth overall with a 30′ 6.5″ heave. In the 4x200m relay, Adrienne Christy filled in for her twin sister, and finished in 14th overall (1:55.75) alongside Brand, senior Shantavia Whylly, and junior Caroline Bettencourt.
Next up for the Vineyarders is the all-state Meet of Champions on Saturday, featuring athletes across all five divisions. With their top-four finishes, Brand (high jump), Christy (two-mile), and Serpa (1,000m) have secured their spots for this weekend.
Girls’ basketball with feel-good end to their season
This past week, the Vineyarders finished out their season with games against Monomoy away on the 15th, and their home finale against St. John Paul II on the 17th. Despite a tough loss to the Sharks, the Vineyarders bounced back against the Lions on Friday for a nice senior night victory.
The night started with some heartfelt speeches from the players and coaches for seniors Maria Andrade, Josie Welch, and CJ Walsh. This trio served as the Vineyarders’ captains this year, and had a great final showing for the home crowd. Come tip-off, the three locked in and led the way for MVRHS on both sides of the court, as they had all season.
On defense, Walsh tallied four blocks, three of which were “volleyball spikes” into the stands. Meanwhile, Welch teamed up with sophomore Delilah Oliver to faceguard and ultimately shut out St. John Paul II’s top two scorers in the second half. With a four-point lead at halftime, Coach Braillard’s strategy allowed the Vineyarders to stretch out their lead and cruise to a 36-27 win.
On offense, Welch dropped 14 points, including two three-point shots, Andrade had seven, and Walsh put up four. Walsh also finished with 14 rebounds, and Welch had 10.
“All three of them had a good game,” Coach Braillard said. “There was a good feeling in the gym all day.”
Next season, Coach Braillard is looking forward to fostering this same positive attitude and outlook that was crucial to their success. The Vineyarders tripled their win count this season from last, and were three close games away from making the playoffs. “[We’re going to] continue improving on the skill development they achieved this year, and the good communication we developed over the course of the season.”
Boys’ hockey hosts 23rd annual Fairleigh Dickinson tournament
This past weekend, the Vineyarders hosted the Hopkinton Hillers, Lynnfield Pioneers, and Hudson Hawks for this year’s rendition of the Fairleigh S. Dickson Jr. Invitational. On Saturday, MVRHS dominated Hudson 11-1, but then fell to Hopkinton 5-0 in the final on Sunday.
For their game against Hudson, the Vineyarders had their First Responder Appreciation Night, featuring four local first responders on the ice during the national anthem. Furthermore, MVRHS donned their custom black and yellow jerseys, with a red pulse on the back. In the huge win over the Hawks, the Vineyarders scored twice in the first period, twice in the third, and exploded for seven in the second. Junior Aiden Conley also happened to score his first career hat trick on Saturday.
On Sunday, MVRHS faced off against a speedy, 15-4 Hopkinton squad. Coach Matt Mincone stated, “[We] played a disciplined game overall with some positional mistakes that a good team will capitalize on.” This was the Vineyarders’ fourth loss in five games, following their awesome 11-game winning streak midseason.
Next up, MVRHS will host Nauset on Wednesday, Feb. 22 for a rematch of their Feb. 11 loss. This will be the Vineyarders’ final game of the season, and their senior night.
“Finding ourselves playing tough competition is preparing us for the state tournament… our team play has been on our heels but I feel we are progressing to face what lies ahead,” Coach Mincone said.
The Vineyarders are currently 12-7, and ranked 8th in the MIAA Division IV Power Rankings. They are scheduled to host a first round home game in the playoffs.
Girls’ hockey finishes their regular season
The Vineyarders had their final two regular season games this week, against Scituate away on Saturday and then Norwood at home on Monday. With the chance to host a first round playoff game on the line, the Vineyarders had to play hard to retain their top-16 ranking in MIAA’s Division II.
Versus Scituate, MVRHS started slow, ceding a 2-1 lead halfway through the first period. Needing a three-goal win to move up in the rankings, the Vineyarders turned it on in the second and third, including two goals in the final three minutes, to earn themselves a well-deserved 7-3 victory.
“The girls dug down and got the job done in that one,” Coach Geoghan Coogan said after the game.
Freshman center Emily Coogan had four goals and two assists against Scituate, while senior winger Alana Nevin finished with two goals and four assists. The game also featured freshman defenseman Jane Coogan’s first ever varsity goal.
Against Norwood, the Vineyarders had their hands full with a tough, physical opponent. Norwood had just played No. 5 Canton to a 1-1 draw, and were also vying for a first round playoff game, so “they came to play,” coach Coogan said. In a back-and-forth game, the Vineyarders gave up a 2-1 lead early on, but managed to tie it back up 3-3 in the third period. Unfortunately, however, Norwood scored on a power play with 3:20 to go, and held on for the 4-3 win. Coach Coogan stated after the game, “We battled right to the end and that’s a game we have to learn from as we enter the tournament.”
In the loss, junior Savannah Meader, freshman Elle Mone, and Emily Coogan had goals, with Nevin, junior Violet Macphail, and junior Maia Donnelly having assists. With these points, the first front line of Nevin, Mone, and Coogan broke the threshold of 100 total points in a season. “Fantastic accomplishment for them as individuals, but they couldn’t have done it without the support of the super strong team effort surrounding them,” said Coach Coogan.
With a 12-6-2 finish on the season, the Vineyarders clinched that coveted first round home playoff game. The Vineyarders will rest up this week while they wait for the playoff brackets to be released. They will know the date and opponent for their first round game on Saturday.
Boys’ basketball has 13-game winning streak snapped
On Monday, Feb. 20, the 17-1 Vineyarders traveled to Apponequet for the first round of a four-team tournament. MVRHS was scheduled to play Bishop Stang in the first round, followed by the winner/loser of Apponequet and Wareham on Wednesday.
According to Coach Mike Joyce, Bishop Stang was definitely a beatable opponent, but cold shooting from his team led to their 65-47 defeat. The Vineyarders had the lead through three quarters, but in the fourth the wheels came off, as Bishop Stang caught fire and MVRHS didn’t score a single field goal. “We were doing everything right except putting the ball in the basket,” stated Mike Joyce. The Vineyarders shot only 30% all game, and 19% from three.
After our print deadline on Wednesday, Feb. 22, the Vineyarders will return to Apponequet to play the hosts in the match for third place. The game has suddenly become rather important for the Vineyarders, who need a win to secure a first round home game in the playoffs. Coach Joyce is confident that his team will bounce back, however, calling the Bishop Stang game “extraordinary.”