Lopes begins season as new girls lacrosse coach
By Cary Shuman
The temperature was a brisk 44 degrees at practice Monday night at Harry Della Russo Stadium, but coach Manny Lopes and his Revere High girls’ lacrosse team were hard at work in preparation for their next game.
After serving the past two seasons as the assistant lacrosse coach under head coach Karen Atkinson, Lopes has taken command of the program that has 56 players on the varsity and jayvee teams. He is also the RHS boys soccer head coach.
“It’s going awesome,” said Lopes, who is a mathematics teacher at Everett High School. “I obviously knew the players from the previous years. We’ve added some of my JV players to the 12 returning players and they’re very good and we’re continuing to show improvement.”
Lopes said his team should again be very competitive in the Northeastern Conference South Division.
“Our goal is to win the NEC South title again and do the best we can in the State Tournament,” said Lopes.
Lopes said that Atkinson did an excellent job building up the Revere youth lacrosse program and making lacrosse a popular sport at the high school level.
“Karen is an incredible coach,” said Lopes, who played lacrosse for the Bentley University club team. “I learned a lot from her.”
Four captains, seniors Shetay Travis and Jenna Wells and juniors Kiana Napolitano and Janelle Mercado are leading the varsity.
The quartet agreed that Lopes was an outstanding choice to continue the momentum of the program and to lead it to further success.
“Coach Lopes has a lot of good things in store for this team and he has a lot of faith in us,” said Travis, the starting goalkeeper. “We’ve been progressing each season and we’re looking to make to the state tournament for the third year in a row.”
“We’re fortunate that coach Lopes decided to take the job – he’s very passionate and knows a lot about lacrosse and I’m very happy that he can lead the team this season,” said Wells. “He’s a real asset to our team.”
Napolitano, the reigning South Division Offensive Player of the Year, agreed that Lopes’s passion for the sport has a positive influence on the players.
“Coach Lopes is very passionate about what he does and he wants us to get better and pushes us a lot,” said Napolitano. “I think he’s a great coach.”
Mercado also predicts a bright future for the team.
“I think coach Lopes is going to help us do very things,” said Mercado. “We’re tournament-bound.”
RhS sports Roundup
RHS baseball team wins opener, 5-4
The Revere High baseball team opened its season on a winning note with a 5-4 victory at East Boston on Saturday to mark a successful debut for new RHS head coach Michael Manning.
Matt Cravotta was chief among the heroes for the Patriots in the victory. Matt stepped onto the mound in the bottom of the second inning with the bases loaded and none out. He escaped the frame by allowing just one run (which put Eastie ahead 2-1 at the time) and proceeded to finish the game with six strikeouts and yielding two more runs, both of which were unearned.
East Boston grabbed a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first, thanks to a Revere error, two walks, and a hit-batter. However, the Patriots escaped further damage thanks to a 3-6-3 double play, Jon Murphy to Lucas Rincon and back to Murphy.
Revere got that one back in the second when John Leone reached on an error, stole second, and scored on another Eastie error on a ball hit to first by Cravotta.
East Boston retook the lead in its half of the frame. Two hit-batters and a walk prompted Manning to bring in Cravotta. Matt struck out his first opponent and walked the next to force in a run, but a 4-6-3 double play (Alejandro Arango to E.J. Leone to Murphy) ended the East Boston threat.
Revere brought the contest back to level at 2-2 in the third when Murphy walked, Brandon Sarmanian singled to right, and E.J. Leone laid down a bunt to load the bases. John Leone then grounded out to first to bring in Murphy.
East Boston regained the lead in the bottom of the third on a base hit and a pair of throwing errors, but the Patriots rallied for three markers in the fourth to forge ahead for good.
James O’Donnell led off with a walk, Kasey Cummings singled to left, and Murphy was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Sarmanian came through with a clutch, two-out base hit to right that delivered O’Donnell and Cummings. An infield hit to short by E.J. Leone then brought across Murphy with what would prove to be the game-winning run.
The triumph did not come without heartache for the Patriots however, as East Boston loaded the bases in the bottom of the seventh with one out, prompting a visit to the mound by Manning.
“I think that Matt thought I was coming to get him when I came to the mound,” said Manning. “But there was no way I could pull him in that situation. He had been great all game on the hill and deserved to see it through, and he delivered in the clutch.”
Cravat rewarded his coach’s faith, striking out the next Eastie batter and then forcing a ground-out back to Cravotta himself for the final out.
“I was happy with the resiliency and poise our team showed so early in the season,” Manning noted. “While the defense wasn’t perfect, we were able to get out of multiple sticky situations with a couple of great inning-ending, bases-loaded double plays and gutsy pitching”.
Sarmanian (2-for-4 with two RBI) and E.J. Leone (2-for-4 with one RBI) were the offensive stars for Revere.
Manning and his crew were scheduled to play at Malden today (Wednesday), and will host Somerville on the holiday on Monday. They will travel to Saugus next Wednesday.
Boys tennis team wins season opener
The Revere High boys tennis team inaugurated its 2018 season with a 3-2 victory over the Danvers-Peabody co-op team.
Although the Patriots’ first and second singles players, junior David Phan and senior Josue Martinez, dropped their matches, Revere won both doubles contests.
That left the third singles match as the deciding point — which senior Riaz Butt handily placed into the Revere side of the scoring column with a win in straight sets, 6-4, 6-2, over his Danvers counterpart.
The Patriot doubles duos consisted of Eriz Meza and Alejandro Zuleta at first doubles and the tandem of Wellan Sok and Sidelong Men at second doubles.
Coach Mike Flynn and his crew were set to host Malden today (Wednesday) and will travel to Somerville on the holiday on Monday.
RHS softball team drops heartbreaker
The Revere High softball team came out on the short end of a heartbreaking 7-6 loss at Peabody in the season-opener this past Monday.
The Lady Patriots grabbed a 3-0 lead in the opening inning. Eve Leskovitch and Alexis Iacoviello layed down a pair of well-executed bunts to start the game and senior captain Victor Coreia followed with a walk to fill the bases.
Olivia McManus and senior captain Alina Giuliano then delivered base hits to bring across their teammates.
After Peabody cut the lead to 3-2, Revere rallied for another three-spot in the fourth. McManus and Giuliano came through with key hits and freshman Malina Polan placed a nice bunt in the uprising.
However, Peabody took advantage of a pair of Revere miscues in the bottom of the sixth to bring matters back to level at 6-6.
Correia belted a long drive in the top of the seventh that appeared headed for a roundtripper, but the Lady Tanner outfielder made a nice grab on the warning track. Peabody then scored the winning run in the bottom of the seventh for the walk-off victory.
Despite the loss, RHS head coach Joe Cicarello was upbeat about his team’s performance.
“The game marked our first time this spring on a dirt field,” said Ciccarello, “The fact that we were able to perform as well as we did against a quality opponent such as Peabody bodes well for us.
“We have a lot of young players — we lost nine girls to graduation — and their overall play was encouraging,” Ciccarello continued. “We played small ball when we had to and there were a lot of positives. Our watchword for this season is ‘boldness,’ and we had a lot of that on display against Peabody.”
Ciccarello and his crew received quite a scare when a line drive back to the pitcher’s circle struck RHS hurler McManus on the kneecap. However, Olivia picked herself up and stayed in the game.
The Lady Patriots will play at Malden today (Wednesday) because the RHS home field at St. Mary’s is not ready. They will travel to non-league foe Belmont on Friday and to Somerville on the holiday on Monday. They hope to hold their home-opener next Wednesday against Saugus.
Girls track team falls in season-opener
The Revere High girls track & field team came up on the short end of a 78-45 decision to Danvers in their season-opener last week.
“Danvers captured first place in 12 of the events, which was just too much for us to overcome,” said RHS head coach Antonio LaBruna, whose squad was missing its senior captain, Hannah Fitzpatrick, who has been sidelined with a foot injury. “We are a really young team and are going to take our lumps on the scoreboard this spring, but our core group has a great work ethic which makes them a lot of fun to coach.”
Among the highlights for the Lady Patriots were three first-place finishes: Senior captain Stephanie Vu in the 400M dash in a clocking of 72.2; Luana Barbosa in the 100M high hurdles in 19.6; and the 4 X 100M relay quartet of Emily Demauro, Stephanie Vu, Kathy Umanzor, and Jessica Vo in 58.9.
Also turning in fine performances with second-place efforts for Revere were:
Chloe Giordano – 100M Hurdles – 20.5
Chloe Giordano – Triple Jump – 28′-2.5″
Chloe Giordano – 100M – 14.7
Jesse So – Javelin – 64′-9″
Kathy Umanzor – 200M – 30.2
Erika Cheever – Mile – 6:42
Third-place finishers who added single points to the Revere cause were:
Luana Barbosa – Long Jump – 13′-7″
Jessica Vo – Triple Jump – 27′-9″
Salome Gezehagn – Shot-put – 21′-9.5″
Maria Torres – Javelin – 64′-0″
Astrid Umanzor – 200M – 31.2
Leila Cesic – 800M – 3:11
Olivia Novoselsky – 1 Mile – 6:45
Leila Cesic – 2 Mile – 14:27
“Chloe Giordano had an impressive start to the season,” noted LaBruna. “She just learned the triple jump this season and she has experience running the hurdles and 100M from her freshmen season, but she has certainly gotten stronger and faster.”
LaBruna and his crew were back in action this past Monday and came up short against Everett, 73-53. Details of that meet will appear in next week’s Journal. The Lady Patriots will be off until next Thursday, April 19, when they will host Marblehead.
Students earn ATHLETIC HONORS
COSTANZA APPOINTED TO SAAC COUNCIL
American International College student, sophomore Matthew Costanza, of Revere, a member of the AIC baseball team, has been appointed to the Northeast-10 Conference’s official Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) council.
The council, which was formally introduced on March 14, 2018, aims to receive information from appropriate sources and act on matters pertaining to the well-being of the student-athletes of the Northeast-10 Conference, according to a release from the NE10. In addition, the NE10 SAAC will receive and discuss information regarding legislative and administrative matters affecting the well-being of student-athletes affiliated with the NE10, and convey judgment on these matters to the appropriate parties.
“Being selected to be part of NE10 SAAC is a huge honor for me,” said Costanza. “Knowing that I have the ability to make a difference to not only my school, but schools across the conference, is a big deal to me, and an opportunity I look forward to taking full advantage of.”
Founded in 1885, American International College (AIC) is a private, co-educational, doctoral granting institution located in Springfield, Massachusetts, comprising the School of Business, Arts and Sciences, the School of Education, and the School of Health Sciences. AIC supports and advances education, diversity, and opportunity for its students and the community.
HINOJOSA ON ASSUMPTION SOFTBALL TEAM
The Assumption College Department of Athletics has announced that Ally Hinojosa, of Revere, has earned a spot on the 2018 Assumption College softball team. Hinojosa, Class of 2020, will compete during the Greyhounds’ spring season.
The Hounds finished the 2017 with a 19-18 overall record and 15-9 in conference, earning them the No. 3 seed in the Northeast10 Tournament. Assumption softball was ranked fourth in the Preseason Coaches Poll and was 29th out of 251 Division II teams by College Factual.
“Assumption is a very special place with tremendous people and I am honored to be able to be a part of and contribute to the strong community here,” said first-year head coach Jon Ladino. “I look forward to coaching our student athletes and supporting them in achieving excellence in both the classroom and on the softball field,” Our preseason ranking among all division II schools is quite an accomplishment and is proof that the time, energy, and effort that our players, coaches, and staff put forth everyday does not go unnoticed.”
Founded in 1904 by the Augustinians of the Assumption in Worcester, Mass., Assumption College is a Catholic liberal arts institution that offers undergraduate students 41 majors and 48 minors in the liberal arts, sciences, business, and professional studies; as well as master’s and continuing education degrees and professional certificate programs-each through an educational experience that is grounded in the rich Catholic intellectual tradition. The curriculum enables students to gain a depth and breadth of knowledge that leads to professional success and personal fulfillment. Students-whether on the Worcester campus or at the College’s Rome, Italy, campus-become engaged participants in Assumption’s classic liberal arts education, exploring new ideas and making connections across disciplines. To prepare for the workforce, students learn cutting-edge theory and best practices, conduct innovative research, and develop excellent communication and critical-analysis skills. Assumption graduates are also known for their thoughtful citizenship and compassionate service to their community. For more information about Assumption College, please visit www.assumption.edu.
Napolitano invited to try out for U.S. national lacrosse team
By Cary Shuman
Revere High junior Kiana Napolitano has earned a prestigious invitation to try out for the United States national youth lacrosse team.
Napolitano, a captain and an attack midfielder for the Lady Patriots, will join the top players in the region at the tryout in Connecticut.
Napolitano received the Northeastern Conference South Division Offensive Player of the Year Award last season. She scored two goals in Revere’s first game and looms as a candidate for conference MVP this season.
RHS coach Manny Lopes was not surprised that USA lacrosse officials extended an invitation to Napolitano.
“Kiana is definitely a college-caliber player as a junior,” said RHS head coach Manny Lopes. “She’s still learning in terms of being patient on the field, but she is an exceptional player.”
Napolitano has played for the Homegrown Lacrosse select team in North Andover in the offseason the past six years.
She is excited about the current RHS girls lacrosse season.
“We’re a good team who works hard together and has fun playing the sport,” said Napolitano.
One of the school’s most versatile athletes, Napolitano also plays volleyball and runs track. Her twin, Nicky, is an outstanding hockey and lacrosse player at St. Mary’s High School, Lynn.