Sports 01-26-2017

January 29, 2017
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CHS Roundup

Red Devils outlast Revere in wild one, 61-56

The Chelsea High boys basketball team earned a thrilling 61-56 victory over Revere last Wednesday evening at the CHS gym.

The encounter with the Patriots, the Red Devils’ ancient foes from another era who have renewed their rivalry on the hardcourt in recent years, took place before a packed and raucous crowd, as has been the case for the past few seasons.

Revere started quickly, jumping out to an 8-2 lead, but the Red Devils put together a 12-0 run to move out to a 14-8 advantage before Revere answered with a six-point streak to leave the score at level, 14-14, at the first buzzer.

The teams continued to trade punches and counterpunches in the second stanza. Patriot big man Mass Joof (16 points, eight rebounds) gave Revere a huge spark off the bench with 12 points in the quarter, including a layup to take a 31-29 lead with seconds before the end of the half. However, Chelsea’s hot-shooting junior forward Chris Torres (26 points, including six three-pointers) drained a trey as time expired to give Chelsea a 32-31 edge at the intermission.

“Torres really hurt us tonight with his three-point shooting,” said RHS head coach David Leary. “We had seen them play twice and he had not really been lighting it up from deep, but tonight he could not miss.”

Revere started to take control in the third quarter thanks to a man-to-man defense that slowed Chelsea down, holding the Red Devils to 11 points in the quarter.

Offensively, Patriot sophomore guard Marcus Brunson-Perez (eight points, five assists) nailed a pair of treys and senior Curtis High (16 points, six rebounds) made some tough shots in the lane to give Revere a 48-43 lead at the end of the third period.

The fourth quarter played out with the same script for the first few minutes, as the rivals exchanged baskets, leaving Revere with a six point lead with 3:30 left in the game.

However, the torrid Torres found his hot hand again, knocking down consecutive three-pointers to bring the contest to a 56-56 deadlock as the clocked ticked under 2:00 to go.

Revere frustratingly missed an opportunity to move ahead on a few missed shots and putbacks, while Chelsea’s Franklin Cruz (18 points, six rebounds) made two big free throws to give Chelsea its first lead of the second half, 58-56, with under a minute remaining.

The Patriots struggled to get a basket on their ensuing possession and Cruz went to the line again, making 1-of-2 shots, leaving Revere with a chance to tie the game.

“I give Chelsea all the credit,” lauded Leary. “They hit some huge shots and free throws down the stretch to close the game. We battled hard tonight against a very good Chelsea team.”

CHS head coach Judah Jackson and his squad host Whittier Friday evening and Lynn Tech this coming Tuesday. Tip-off for the games is set for 5:30.

Fine performances by CHS tracksters in meet with Somerville

Although both the Chelsea High boys and girls indoor track teams teams came out on the short end of their meet last Thursday at Somerville, a number of the CHS tracksters turned in fine individual performances.

On the girls’ side, the Lady Red Devils dropped a 54-32 decision.  The lone individual winners for the Chelsea were sophomores Amanda Dias (2-0mile, 13:40) and Yarid Deras (mile, 6:15).

“Both Amanda and Yarid continue to have amazing seasons with each only suffering one loss in dual meet action with one meet to go,” said CHS head coach Mark Martineau.

The CHS 4 x 400 quartet of Martine Simon, Awa Bajinka, Jecelyn Poste, and Owliyo Mohammud also were victorious with a clocking of 4:50.1.

Chelsea was able to keep the meet close by scoring second in many events, including Sylvia Agyeiwaa in the hurdles, Martine Simon in the dash, Owliyo Mohammud in the 300, Jocelyn Poste in the 1000, and Alex Martinez in the shot put.

Marcella Castillo placed 3rd in the 600 and Simon took 3rd in the high jump to round out the CHS scoring.

“Somerville is always a tough and well-coached team,” noted Martineau. “We did well for ourselves, but once again our lack of depth came back to hurt us.”

Yesterday (Wednesday) the girls were set to engage in their last dual meet competition of the season against CAC rival Greater Lawrence. With a victory, the girls could finish the season with a 3-2 winning record.

This coming Saturday the top Lady Red Devils will travel to Reggie Lewis for the State Coaches Invitational meet.

The boys fell to Somerville by a score of 67-19. “Somerville is undefeated this year and we knew this was going to be a tough fight,” said Martineau.

The individual winners for Chelsea were Jose Leclerc in the mile (5:13) and Nick Ieng in the shot put (36’-3.75”).  Second-place finishes went to Abraham Barrienton (2-mile, 12:37), Adriel Cedano (300, 35.39), and Nick Ieng (dash).

Rounding out the scoring were Isaac Colcord in the 600 (1:27.8) and Kevin Umanzor in the 1000 (2:45).

“As is the case with their girls’ team, the Somerville boys are tremendously coached and will be GBL champions,” said Martineau. “All of the races were close and exciting.  It was great to see the level of fight that our boys showed.”

The boys also face CAC rival Gr. Lawrence today (Wednesday) and the top members of the team will head to the State Coaches Invitational this Saturday.

Bruins Beat

by Bob Morello

Bruins Feeling the Heat

Boston earned a hard fought overtime 4-3 win against the Detroit Red Wings on Garden ice in Tuesday night’s game. It wasn’t pretty, but it was two points, and at press time Claude Julien was still the coach of the Bruins, as the team finally ended it’s consecutive loss streak at four. Amidst the finger-pointing and calls for Julien’s head by sports talk radio, Bruins management, has for now, decided to stand pat. Is this a good move on management’s part? I think it is, the reason being when you look at the current Bruins roster, you realize that for the talent Julien has to work with, he’s done a decent job with the players he’s been given. A look at player stats shows that he is not the wrench in the works that is stalling Boston’s playoff run this season.

After last season’s playoff debacle, which saw the Bruins miss the playoffs for the second consecutive season, management made some tweaks, nothing major unless you felt that David Backes’ acquisition from the St. Louis Blues was the only fix they would need. Backes through 43 games has basically struggled to find a position that allows him to play his solid game. His efforts to date include 11 goals and 11 assists, for 22 points, enough for sixth best in points on the Bs. His Backes’ 11 goals, have him third on the team with the most goals, behind team leader David Pastrnak’s 20, and Brad Marchand’s 19. A glaring stat shows that of the 27 players the Bruins have used to date, and having played at least two games, 17 of them are on the minus side of +/-, with David Krejci the worst at -11.

The plus-side has been the emergence of Pastrnak as a goal-scorer with the moves fit for the highlight film, the effective play of 20-year-old Brandon Carlo on defense, while the down-side highlights the disappointing play of Dorchester native Jimmy Hayes. A glimmer of effective play has emerged from Frank Vatrano and Austin Czarnik, but only temporarily. Now it all comes down as to whether the Bruins have enough drive and desire to put together a win streak that will get them into the playoffs, for the first time in three seasons, with just 31 games left to play. Continued concern is the drop in play from an obviously tired Tuukka Rask who has no reliable relief, and as a result, has had to play in 14 of the last 15 games. The wear-and-tear on Rask is showing in his numbers as his goals-against-average has inflated to 2.13, and his save-percentage has dipped to .919. Factor in the stat that he has posted all but one of Boston’s 24 wins (Anton Khudobin), and you can understand that the urgency of winning leaves little room for Rask to rest. In addition there will be no All-Star break this weekend for Rask and Marchand, as they are both on the Atlantic Division roster. Apologies, last week’s Bruins Beat incorrectly listed Marchand and Bergeron as heading to the All-Star Game, the correct pair are Marchand and Rask. The Los Angeles Kings will host this weekend’s 62nd NHL All-Star Game (Sunday, 1/29 at 3:30pm). The NHL All-Star Skills Competition will precede the All-Star Game on Saturday,  January 28th at 7:00pm.

At press time (Wednesday) the Bruins sat tentatively in the third spot of the Atlantic Division (first three in the division make the playoffs) – with 54 points in 51 games, and the word ‘tentatively’ is used, because the Ottawa Senators in second place in the Atlantic have three more points than Boston, and have played five games fewer. Hot on the heels of the Bs are the Toronto Maple Leafs with 53 points, and the Leafs have played six games fewer than the Bruins. Further concern is expressed when viewing the Eastern Conference standings where Boston today (Wednesday) holds seventh place ahead of Toronto by a single point,  with the suddenly competitive New York Islanders possibly back in the race with 49 points, having played five fewer games.

An aside: Only two other teams in the NHL, along with Boston have played 51 games to date (Calgary and Winnipeg), as the continued ‘all-over-the-place’ NHL schedule continues to be sporadic, with multiple games scheduled together in a short period of days, and in other situations, extended days off in between games… better schedule balancing by the NHL schedule-maker is needed in order for show division and conference races more clearly.

Following the All-Star break the Bruins will head out on the road for a pair of back-to-back games with the Tampa Bay Lightning on Tuesday (1/30 at 7:30pm) and follow with the second half of the back-to-back with a matchup versus the Washington Capitol on Wednesday (2/1 at 8:00pm). After two games in two days, the Bruins will play their next pair of games on Saturday (2/4 at 7:00pm) versus the Toronto Maple Leafs, and follow with the next game (example of NHL schedule inconsistency!!!!), not until five days later, Thursday (2/9 at 7:00pm) to face former Bruin, Joe Thornton and the San Jose Sharks).


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