Gurska on WPI softball team
Special to the Journal
Lindsay Gurska and the WPI softball team concluded a historic season on Friday in the NCAA Division III Super Regionals.
The Engineers (34-11) set the program and school record for team wins in a single season en route to its first-ever NCAA Division III Championship tournament berth. The Engineers made the most of it by sweeping through the Williamstown Regional and sporting a 3-2 record on the national stage.
Super Regional Game Two Recap
Medford Super Regional Most Outstanding Pitcher Allyson Fournier (South Windsor, CT) tossed a two-hitter and struck out 12 as No. 1, and two-time defending champion, Tufts advanced to the NCAA Division III Softball Championship finals in Salem, VA with a 6-1 victory over WPI on Friday afternoon at Spicer Field.
The Jumbos now sport a 46-0 record while the Engineers complete their historic season with a 34-11 ledger.
Nina Murphy-Cook (Roseville, CA) broke up Fournier’s perfect game bid with a hit to lead off the bottom of the seventh. She would steal second and advance to third on a miscue on the play. Biney followed with an RBI single down the left field line. The center fielder would end the game in scoring position as she stole second and moved to third on a miscue later in the frame.
Murphy-Cook’s 57th steal of the season moved her into a tie for fourth all-time in Division III for swipes in a single-season. She took over the top spot in the NEWMAC record book with her 56th on Thursday.
WPI, playing as the home team, looked to make a statement early as Kelsey Saucier (Worcester, MA) struck out Michelle Cooprider (Hopkinton, MA), who went 4-for-4 with a leadoff home run for the hosts on Thursday, looking. After a walk, the Engineers got out of the inning with a fly out and an infield grounder.
Cooprider would be named the super regional’s Most Outstanding Player.
Fournier picked up where she left off and tossed a 1-2-3 first inning with a pair of strikeouts.
In the second inning, Saucier rebounded from issuing a one-out walk by fanning her second batter of the day. Another free pass put a runner in scoring position; however, a fly out to Ama Biney (Worcester, MA) ended the threat.
The bottom of the frame, featured hard-hit line outs to the outfield by Katie Bumila (Raynham, MA) and RiAnna May (Westminster, CO) before Fournier logged her third punchout of the contest.
Cooprider had the upper hand in her second at-bat with a leadoff double to left field to open the third. She was promptly moved to third on a ground out by Carrie Copacino (Newton, MA). Bumila then fielded a grounder at first and tagged the batter while helping prevent Cooprider from scampering home on the play. While Raven Fournier (Springfield, MA) and Saucier battled, Cassie Ruscz (Wolcott, CT), who reached on a walk, swiped second to put a pair of Jumbos in scoring position. The at-bat, and half inning ended, on a fly out to Murphy-Cook in left.
Fournier struck out the side in the bottom of the third to run her K total to six.
The Engineers defense responded with a 1-2-3 frame of its own, which included Saucier’s third, and final, strikeout of the game in the top of the fourth.
The Jumbos took the 1-0 advantage in the top of the fifth when Cooprider’s RBI hit hopped just out of the reach Kristin Gallagher (Coventry, RI) and into left field. Cooprider made it to third once more on another ground out and ended up stranded following an infield popup to Jacquelyne DiTroia (Andover, MA) at second and a fly out to left. WPI later retired the Jumbos in order in the top of the sixth.
The bases were loaded with one out for Tufts in the top of the seventh. Caroline Medino (Pompton Lakes, NJ) relieved Saucier and induced a grounder that saw Gallagher and Lindsay Gurska (Revere, MA) team up to get the lead runner at the plate. Tufts then proceeded to tack on five insurance runs.
Cooprider accounted for three of Tufts five hits in on the day.
About Worcester Polytechnic Institute
Founded in 1865 in Worcester, Mass., WPI is one of the nation’s first engineering and technology universities. Its 14 academic departments offer more than 50 undergraduate and graduate degree programs in science, engineering, technology, business, the social sciences, and the humanities and arts, leading to bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees. WPI’s talented faculty work with students on interdisciplinary research that seeks solutions to important and socially relevant problems in fields as diverse as the life sciences and bioengineering, energy, information security, materials processing, and robotics. Students also have the opportunity to make a difference to communities and organizations around the world through the university’s innovative Global Perspective Program. There are more than 40 WPI project centers throughout the Americas, Africa, Asia-Pacific, and Europe.
RhS sports Roundup
RHS baseball team beats Salem on Al Blasi Day
The Revere High baseball team paid tribute in the most fitting way to the late Al Blasi, the long-time coach of the Patriot baseball program, with a 6-5, walk off victory over Salem last Monday at Conigliaro Field.
Brian Munoz raced home from third base with the winning run on a one-out, ground ball to first by sophomore John DeSimone, who had two hits on the day. Munoz had reached on a fielder’s choice (which had erased Matt Bonaventura, who had walked, from the basepaths) and advanced to third on a subsequent base hit by Hector Zavala, setting the stage for the exciting finish to a day that marked a celebration of the legendary RHS baseball coach who mentored some of the greatest athletes in the annals of Revere High in a coaching career that spanned more than four decades.
Senior captain Noah Jaynes tossed all seven frames for the Patriots in a fine pitching effort in which Noah yielded just five hits while fanning eight opponents and walking only one.
Maxx Anderson contributed two hits to the Revere cause and Jaynes himself stroked a double.
Anderson gave Revere another fine performance on the mound later in the week against Saugus. The junior tossed all seven frames, allowing only seven hits. However, some poor support from his teammates, both in the field and at the plate, translated into a 5-1 loss. “Max pitched a great game for us,” said RHS head coach Shawn Brinkley. “But we let him down in the field that contributed to allowing in some unearned runs.”
Revere also dropped a contest to Lynn Classical the day before in which the Patriots fell behind 10-0 in the middle of the third inning. However, junior Giuseppe Cincinnato came on with the bases loaded and none out in the third and proceeded to toss the next four full frames, allowing just two runs and two hits while walking only two.
“Giuseppe stepped in and performed very well,” said Brinkley.
The Pats were set to meet Lynn English this past Monday and will host Peabody today (Wednesday). They trek to Salem Saturday and close out the season next Wednesday when they will entertain Beverly.
RHS softball team gets back on track
It was an up-and-down week for the Revere High softball team, as the Lady Patriots split their four games in an eight-day stretch.
Revere started off on the right foot with an 11-4 triumph over Salem last Monday. The Lady Patriots’ bats were on fire, led by Ally Hinojosa, who went 3-for-4 with four RBI. Victoria Correia and Victoria Russo had two hits apiece and Kristina Stella contributed a two-RBI base hit.
However, two nights later the Revere offense sputtered in a 3-1 loss to Lynn Classical under the lights at the St. Mary’s field. The Lady Patriots were looking to clinch a Northeastern Conference North Division title with a victory over the second-place Lady Rams, but four errors and five base-running mistakes — including a pick-off at third base with the bases loaded — thwarted Revere’s bid for an outright North Division title.
“Nothing went our way,” noted RHS head coach Joe Ciccarello. “The only positive aspect is that it forced us to take a hard look at our base-running and hopefully we have learned from our mistakes.”
The Lady Patriots remained in the doldrums Saturday morning at Westford Academy, a contest that took place the day after the RHS senior prom (which was attended by five of the RHS starters). Revere had three opportunities to break the game open in the early-going with one-out scoring threats in the first (bases loaded), second (runners at second and third), and third (first and second) frames, but could not score.
In addition, two of the four Westford runs were unearned in the eventual 4-1 loss for the Lady Patriots.
However, a new week brought renewed vigor to the Revere squad, who snapped their two game losing streak with a 15-2 pasting of Lynn English this past Monday. Gabby Cammaratta was a one-girl wrecking crew, going 4-for-4 with three ribbies. Correia had another multi-hit day and RHS pitcher Sabrina Palermo was awarded the team’s game ball for her nine-strikeout performance in the five innings that were played before the mercy rule kicked in.
“We had a rough patch, but we righted the ship and now we’ll be looking to close out the season with an NEC title and a high seeding for the state tourney,” said Cicarello, whose team stands at 11-4 overall (9-2 in the NEC North) at the three-quarter pole of the season.
The Lady Patriots, who still are two games ahead of Classical in the race for first place in the NEC North, trek to Peabody today (Wednesday), host Gloucester Saturday, and play at Salem Tuesday.
Boys tennis team wins three of four
The young and ever-improving Revere High boys tennis team is closing out its season in style. The Patriot net men won three of its four matches last week and improved to 6-9 overall (4-4 in the NEC North) on the season.
Last Monday coach Mike Flynn and his squad journeyed to Salem both to complete a match from earlier in the year that had been postponed mid-match and to play another from scratch.
As to the former, the Patriots were leading 2-1 when the snow and rain came back in early April. Mateo Lopez had won his match at second singles, 1-6, 7-5, 6-4, as had the first doubles duo of David Grujic and Danton Duque, 6-1, 4-6, 7-5. Ryan Tran had dropped his match at first singles, 1-6, 0-6, so that left Revere needing another win at either third singles or second doubles to win the match.
Although David Henao fell 6-7 (5-7), 0-6 at the remaining singles slot, the combo of Naveed Jabbar and Josh Preciado came through in three sets, 7-6, 4-6, 6-4 (they had been leading 3-0 in the third set when the match was stopped) to clinch the win for Revere.
When the teams resumed play to start a new match, the Patriots took control quickly en route to a 4-1 triumph. Lopez and Grujic handily won in straight sets at second and third singles, as did the second doubles tandem of Preciado and Andrea Shehaj. Nelson Ortiz and Henao prevailed at first doubles in a three-setter, 6-1, 1-6, 6-2, while Tran played a closer match at first singles before falling, 4-6, 0-6.
Revere also defeated Lynn English last Thursday, 4-1. Victors were Tran at first singles in what Flynn termed a “great match,” 6-0, 0-6, 6-4; Grujic at third singles, 6-4, 7-5; Preciado & Henao at first doubles, 6-3, 6-2; and Jabbar & Ortiz at second doubles, 6-1, 4-6, 6-2. Lopez battled fiercely at second singles, falling in two close sets, 4-6, 5-7.
The lone loss of the week came to Lynn Classical, 4-1. Lopez won his match at second singles, 6-2, 6-0. Both doubles contests were hotly-contested, with Ortiz/Henao losing 4-6, 4-6, and Preciado/Shehaj dropping their match in two tiebreaker sets, 6-7 (9-11), 6-7 (3-7).
“This team has done remarkably well since the start of the season,” said Flynn. “We’ve improved tremendously and the boys are a pleasure to coach. It’s been a fun year for us.”
The Patriots close out their season this week. They took on Peabody this past Monday and trek to former Greater Boston League rival Malden today (Wednesday) in the season finale.
Girls 4 x 400 relay
shatters RHS mark
Although the Revere girls track team came out on the short end of a 108-24 decision to Beverly last Wednesday, the meet was highlighted by a school-record performance by the Lady Patriot 4 x 400 relay team of Catherine Elam, Helen Perez, Hannah Fitzpatrick, and Danielle Fortuna, who shattered the former RHS school mark of 4:43 and set a new standard of 4:38.7.
“This was something I looked at earlier in the season and realized how obtainable it was,” said RHS head coach Antonio LaBruna. “The girls were really excited about the opportunity to go for it as we had been talking about attempting it during this meet for weeks. They each had individual splits that they needed to hit for it to happen and all four of them ran at or under their desired time. Each leg of the relay featured one girl from each grade level with Fitzpatrick (freshman), Perez (sophomore), Elam (junior), and Fortuna (senior), which provided an interesting dynamic to the relay team.
“It was a special moment for our senior captain, class valedictorian and Princeton University-bound Danielle Fortuna, who ran the anchor leg and ended her track career with a school record,” added LaBruna. “Needless to say, the girls were ecstatic.”
In addition to the 4 x 400 quartet (who won the race against their Beverly counterparts), a number of Lady Patriots turned in fine performances with second place performances: Helen Perez in the 400 hurdles (1:17.4); Angelisa Nguyen in the 100 dash (14.2); Rachel Shanbar in the shot-put (27’6); and Janine So in the javelin (76’-6”).
Adding single points to the Revere scoresheet with third place efforts were: Duyen Nguyen in the 200 dash (31.1); Trisha Cheever in the 800 (2:55); Angelisa Nguyen with a long jump of 14’-0”, a personal record (PR) for Angelisa; Catherine Elam in the triple jump (29’-10”); Stephanie Vu in the 400 dash (74.5); and Hannah Fitzpatrick in the mile (6:04).
“Beverly is the top team in our league, so I decided to shake up the lineup a bit and give some kids a change of scenery as far as events are concerned,” noted LaBruna, whose Lady Patriots finished at 3-4 on the season. “The girls responded well and competed hard. The times weren’t great due to a strong cross wind that kept its force throughout the meet, but despite, that a few girls still achieved PR’s.”
The Lady Patriots will compete in the All-NEC Meet Saturday.
Kobilic wins for
RHS girls tennis
Although the Revere High girls tennis team dropped a 4-1 decision to Lynn English this past week, the Lady Patriots’ top singles player, sophomore Hanadi Kobilic, turned in a superb performance with a 6-2, 1-6, 6-4 victory.
“Hanadi made a great comeback after losing the second set to win it in three sets,” said RHS head coach Carla Maniscalco.
In the other matches of the day, sophomore Jocelyn Contreras lost 1-6, 4-6 at second singles; senior Leila Darouey fell at third singles, 0-6, 0-6; junior Lyba Khan and sophomore Victoria Mom lost 0-6, 3-6 at first doubles;
and the second doubles due of sophomores Maria Hernandez and Alondra Esparza fell 0-6, 2-6.
Kobilic also fought well in the team’s match with Lynn Classical last week in a 6-7 (0-7), 1-6 battle with her Classical counterpart at first singles. The other Lady Patriots in the lineup dropped their matches in straight sets to their Lady Ram rivals.