MVRHS track athletes qualify for Nike Outdoor Nationals in Oregon


The MVRHS track team went off at the Division V relays in Seekonk two weeks ago, as both their boys and girls sprint medley relay teams qualified for the Nike Outdoor Nationals this June in Eugene, Ore.

Comprised of one 800-meter run, one 400-meter dash and two 200-meter dashes, the 1600-meter sprint medley relay is an uncommon event that the Vineyard happens to be really good at.

“We always find the right combination of kids,” head Coach Joe Schroeder said. “We have some really nice pieces in place, and they’re inspired by each other.”

On the girls’ side, seniors Alexa Schroeder (800m) and Caroline Bettencourt (200m), and juniors Camille Brand (400m) and Madison Mello (200m), qualified for Nationals with a time of 4:30.92, crushing the threshold (4:35) to qualify in the Emerging Elite Division.

It’ll be Schroeder, Bettencourt and Brand’s second time going to Nationals for the sprint medley relay, having qualified last year alongside junior Maia Donnelly.

On the boys’ side, junior Rodeo Purves-Langer (800m) is the Vineyard’s sole upperclassman on its sprint medley relay team, which also includes sophomore Luis Costa (400m) and freshmen speedsters Kaniel Morgan (200m) and Lucas Martins (200m). They qualified for Nationals with a time of 3:56.86, beating the Emerging Elite threshold of 3:58.

The Vineyarders are thriving in the field as well.

Up against the state’s top talent at the MSTCA Coaches’ Invitational on May 11, Brand won silver in the high jump with a leap of 5 feet, 2 inches, and Mello finished fourth in the shot put with a heave of 33 feet, 11.5 inches.

Brand also won the high jump competition outright at the Weston Twilight Invitational on May 4, with a leap of 5 feet, 4 inches — an MVRHS school record. She qualified for the Nike Outdoor Nationals Championship Division in the process.

“Camille has been on fire,” Coach Schroeder said. “Even shy kids can lead by example. There’s some great leadership on the team, and a real positive vibe.”

Sophomore co-captain Xeandre Miller has also led by example as a javelin thrower, finishing 10th at the Lou Tozzi Invitational for underclassmen on May 3. His 123-foot, 8-inch, hurl was a personal record.

“Xeandre’s a great kid; they’re all great kids,” Schroeder said.


Girls lacrosse gets midseason tune-up

The MVRHS girls lacrosse team has played five games since May 3, putting their depth and versatility to the test in the height of exam season.

First-year head Coach Lauren Pineau says the Vineyarders, namely their midfielders and junior varsity call-ups, have stepped up to the task.

“The team’s gotten better pushing the ball from one side of the field to another — utilizing fluid passes in full rig motion,” Pineau said. “[Junior midfielders] Annabelle Metell and Lizzie Chvatal have been making sure the ball is moving, and our JV players have been showing us what they’ve got.”

Sophomore midfielder Brynn Savva, freshman attacker Ava Mikos, and freshman attacker Abigail Geary have all seen plenty of varsity minutes the past couple of weeks, helping MVRHS power past Falmouth Academy 13-3 on May 9, and Sturgis West 8-2 on May 14.

“The JV players are coachable, take feedback, and want the opportunity to play,” Pineau said. “It shows where the program could go.”

Veteran attacker Ali Dyke has also played terrifically for MVRHS this year, scoring four goals versus Sturgis West on Tuesday, and five goals in an 11-9 loss to Dennis-Yarmouth on May 10. Meanwhile, junior Ellie Tomkins and sophomore Eva Giordano have been “essential” on defense.

MVRHS’ busy schedule will continue through next week, with an away game versus Boston Latin on Thursday, a home game versus Sturgis West on Friday at 3 pm, and a home game against Barnstable on Monday at 3 pm. The Vineyarders are 6-7 so far this season.


Boys tennis sweeps Nantucket, improves to 10-3


Similar to the girls lacrosse team, the MVRHS boys tennis team has had a busy start to the month of May, playing seven teams in 13 days.

Most notably, the Vineyarders completed a season sweep over Nantucket on May 11, winning all five matches in two sets. MVRHS accomplished the same feat versus the Whalers at home on April 27.

MVRHS also beat Falmouth and Barnstable 5-0 without dropping a single set, on May 1 and 9, respectively. The Vineyarders’ road win over Barnstable was especially impressive, as MVRHS lost just six total games, winning seven of their 10 sets 6-0.

The three teams that actually tested MVRHS were Monomoy on May 3, Apponequet on May 4, and Sharon on May 13 — the Vineyarders beat Monomoy 4-1, lost to Apponequet 3-2, and lost to Sharon 5-0.

In third singles, junior Kert Kleeman avenged his loss to Monomoy against Apponequet, winning 6-1, 6-1. In first doubles, juniors Otis Forrester and Kyle Levy beat Apponequet in three sets, and junior Caleb Dubin also showed fight in second singles, taking the second set to a tiebreaker.

Head Coach Nicole Macy believes MVRHS’ losses to Apponequet (14-0, ranked third in MIAA Division III) and Sharon (15-0, ranked first in MIAA Division II) will help her players refocus, and pinpoint which skills they’ll work on prior to the postseason.

“We’re working on fine-tuning the changes we need to make to turn our Ls into Ws the second time around,” Macy said. “[This year’s] additions to the regular starting seven are doing great. They had some opportunities to play in matches last year.”

The No. 2 Vineyarders made it all the way to the Division III state semifinals last June, with a 14-2 regular-season record and a Cape & Islands championship. The Vineyarders are currently ranked fourth in Division III, with a 10-3 regular-season record and a comfortable lead in the Cape & Islands standings.

MVRHS will travel to play Dennis-Yarmouth on Wednesday afternoon, after our print deadline, and play rematches with Falmouth and Apponequet on May 17 and 22, respectively.


Underclassmen step up for boys lacrosse


The MVRHS boys lacrosse team collected two key wins recently, overpowering Cardinal Spellman 18-12 at home on April 26, and Monomoy 8-6 away on May 3.

Against Cardinal Spellman, the Vineyarders leaned on the veteran leadership of the senior Conley twins, Aiden and Liam. Aiden scored seven goals and assisted another versus the Cardinals, and Liam recorded two and two, respectively, while going 23 for 27 at the face-off X.

“We’re in our games because of Liam,” head coach Chris Greene said. “They would be totally different without him doing face-offs.”

The Conley brothers’ longtime attacking partner Wyatt Nicholson also scored three goals, and fellow senior Bryce Cioffi added three goals and tallied two assists versus Cardinal Spellman.

Against Monomoy, it was the Vineyard’s youngsters that stepped up.

On defense, freshmen Rohan Hamilton and Gabe Bengtsson “met the challenge,” and sophomore backup goalie Peyton Tabares “played out of his mind,” recording 27 total saves.

On offense, sophomore John Hoff scored a hat trick with two assists, and freshman Ben Kokoszka scored his first ever goal to seal the victory in crunch time.

“That was the best game this program has had in two years,” Greene said. “We were just in it. Everybody was there, and everybody wanted to win. We expended a lot of energy. Monomoy’s defense is their strength, and we were able to bust that up.”

The Vineyard lost close games to Barnstable and Fairhaven in the first week of May, pushing their record to 5-9. It’s MVRHS’ first season back in the upper (Atlantic) division of the Cape & Islands League, but coach Greene says his team is rolling with the punches.

“We’re a little fish in a big pond now,” Greene said. “We’re a young team, emotionally and physically, but we play up against good teams. This is our league now.”

Next up, the Vineyarders will travel to Falmouth to play the Clippers on Thursday at 3:30 p.m., and then play their home finale versus Cape Cod Academy on Friday at 5 p.m.