NEC champions RHS girls hoop team
prepares for tourney opener Thursday
By Cary Shuman
The Revere High School girls basketball team will host Arlington High in the first round of the MIAA Division 1 North Sectionals Thursday at 7:30 p.m. at the Roland Merullo Fieldhouse.
Coach Diana’s Finn Lady Patriots are the No. 5 seed in the tournament with a 17-5 record. They won their second consecutive Northeastern Conference Large Division championship this season. Arlington, who plays in the Middlesex League, is the No. 13 seed with an 11-9 record. Revere and Arlington are former members of the Greater Boston League.
“We know we have a hands full with a very good Arlington team,” said Finn. “We know in the tournament everyone brings their ‘A’ game and the intensity is at a higher level and we know that we are going to be prepared. Those are three things we know for sure.”
Finn is hoping that a large hometown crowd will be on hand for the opening game of the tournament that has a single-elimination format. Revere tuned up for the postseason with scrimmages against Arlington Catholic and Belmont.
The Lady Patriots defeated Lynn English, 75-45, in the penultimate game of the regular season and fell to St. Mary’s of Lynn, 62-56, in the finale on “Senior Night” at the Roland Ferullo Fieldhouse.
Senior forward Maritza Scott led all scorers in the win over English with 22 points. Scott has been a valuable two-way performer this season and her versatility will help bolster the Patriots’ chances in the postseason. Pamela Gonzalez and Valentina Pepic each had 14 points. Revere trailed by nine at the half before going on a 51-13 tear in the second half.
“We picked up our defensive intensity in the second half and turned the game around,” said Finn. “We know that our defense dictates how well we’re going to play.”
Finn credited seniors Ally Hinojosa, Natasha Iacoviello, Adanna Hector, and Maritza Scott for their defensive contributions in holding English to only six field goals in the second half.
The Lady Patriots lost to St. Mary’s in the second matchup between the two North Shore powers. “We dug ourselves in to a hole in the first half and came back to make it a two-point game in the second half but unfortunately we weren’t able to finish some shots we typically do finish,” said Finn.
Revere should do well in the Northeastern Conference All-Star selection process. Four players will be nominated for the team and Diana Finn will receive Coach of the Year Award consideration for leading the team to the conference title.
Interestingly should Revere defeat Arlington, it is looking at a likely quarterfinal round matchup against Lexington (who hosts North Andover in the first round). Lexington has one of the top players in Massachusetts in senior guard Anna Kelly, who is the school’s all-time leading scorer and has a scholarship from Division 1 Fordham University.
RhS sports Roundup
RHS hockey team secures tourney spot with 3-2 win
The Revere High hockey team culminated its late-season run to attain a spot in the post-season state tournament with an exciting 3-2 victory over Everett Wednesday evening before an enthusiastic hometown crowd at a jam-packed Cronin Rink.
The triumph in the must-win contest gave the Patriots a 9-9-2 record for the season, thus achieving for coach Joe Ciccarello’s squad the .500 record that is needed to punch a ticket to the Journey to the Tourney. Revere won its final three games of the year, all by one-goal or two-goal margins, to earn a chance to play the schoolboy hockey version of March Madness.
Revere now enters the Division 2 North Sectional as the 14th seed (of the 16 teams in the D-2 North) and was set to meet third-seeded Tewksbury, the Merrimack Valley League champ with a 13-5-2 mark, in a first-round contest last night (Tuesday).
“Tewksbury is very good,” said Ciccarello. “They won the MVL and will require our very best to just be in the game late. We have been playing playoff hockey for a few weeks now, so that should help.”
The clutch victory over Everett will be one to remember and savor for a long time by Revere hockey fans. The teams entered the final period deadlocked at 1-1, with Steve Noel providing the lone Patriot goal to that point.
“Everett is a tough team,” said Ciccarello of the Crimson Tide, the co-champ of the Greater Boston League which entered the fray with a 10-9 record. Moreover, Everett had defeated Revere, 4-3, in the teams’ first meeting two weeks ago and features two players among the top-20 scorers in Eastern Mass.
“Going into the third period we knew it was do-or-die,” said the coach, and his team rose to the occasion, as the Patriots turned in 15 minutes of their best hockey of the season at both ends of the ice. Mike Goroshko lit the lamp twice to provide the necessary offense and goaltender Maxx Anderson and the Revere defense held the fort to fend off a late Everett rally to preserve the 3-2 win.
“Maxx Anderson played his heart out,” noted Ciccarello. “At the end of the game, as we were shaking hands, the students started chanting his name. And for a student who always supports all the other teams, it was Maxx’s turn to have the whole student body cheer his name.
“This was a tremendous game both to watch and be a part of,” added Ciccarello, noting the presence of fans including Mayor Brian Arrigo, alumni, youth hockey, students, teachers, and many others in the community.
The evening also was highlighted by Senior Night festivities at which the four Patriots who are members of the RHS class of 2016, Anderson, Joe Ristino, Noel, and Kevin Chiles, were honored for their outstanding contributions to the Revere High hockey program.
If the Patriots prevailed last night, they will have advanced to the quarterfinal round Thursday against the winner of the game between sixth-seeded Gloucester and 11th-seeded Andover. The time and place of that contest is to be determined. After that comes the D-2 North semifinal that is scheduled for Monday.
RHS sports Through the Years
10 years ago
March 1, 2006
The RHS hockey team, fresh off a pair of impressive victories over Canon and Winthrop to close out the regular season, will meet Danvers Thursday in the opening round of the Division 2 North state hockey tourney. Revere finished the season at 13-6-1.
Lady Patriot sophomore Christina Cavagnaro defeated 31 competitors in the NEC three-point shooting contest held as part of the NEC-Cape Ann all star game. Cavagnaro sank eight treys in 30 seconds to win the event.
20 years ago
Feb. 28, 1996
Former RHS star pitcher Mike Spinelli has reported to the Red Sox training facility in Fort Myers, Fla. The southpaw, who compiled a 25-2 record in his career at RHS, turned down a four-year scholarship at the Univ. of Miami to sign a contract with the Red Sox. He has been working out at Fenway Park during the winter.
RHS gymnast Adam Robital won two medals at the State Meet last week and has been named a Boston Herald All-Scholastic for the second straight year.
30 years ago
February 26, 1986
The RHS boys basketball team concluded the season with losses to Chelsea and Somerville to end the year with a 0-20 record. However, Patriot Sal Bottari ended the year as the top scorer in the GBL with an average of 18.8 ppg.
40 years ago
February 25, 1976
The 10-2-4 RHS hockey team is set to meet Braintree in the opening round of the EMass state hockey tournament tomorrow in Billerica.