The Chelsea High football team trekked northward Saturday morning to take on Greater Lawrence, one of the best teams in the Large Division of the Commonwealth Athletic Conference.
Although the Red Devils came out on the short end of a 41-6 decision, CHS head coach Mike Stellato saw some bright spots in his team’s performance.
“Everybody fought hard and gave it their best,” said Stellato, “but we were beat by a better team. Greater Lawrence has a lot of experience and executed what they set out to do.”
Chelsea got onto the scoreboard late in the game with three minutes to play, engineering a 10 play, 60 yard drive that was capped by a two yard burst into the end zone by sophomore reserve quarterback Marc Anthony Williams.
Stellato hailed the efforts of his linebacking corps of Joe Martinez (five tackles, two assists), Raul Flores (six tackles, two assists, and fumble recovery), Kevin Diaz (five tackles, two assists), and sophomore Christian Calix, who did a nice job when he came in.
“We’re very young at many positions,” noted Stellato, “so it’s been trial by fire for our inexperienced players, who’ve seen a lot of action in our first two games. But we knew it would be a learning process for us at the start of the season and we’re just taking it one week at a time.”
Stellato and his crew will stay on the road for their next encounter, journeying to Marlborough to take on Assabet Valley Regional Vocational School, a new rival on the CHS schedule. Assabet, which sports a 2-1 record, plays in the Vocational School League with foes in the central part of the state.
The contest, which is set for Friday at 4:30, originally had been scheduled for a 7:00 p.m. start, but the EEE threat moved the game to late afternoon.
Boys soccer team rolls to two victories
The Chelsea High boys soccer team steamrollered to a pair of victories this past week to remain undefeated and improve to 3-0-1 on the season.
Tuesday’s match against Shawsheen was viewed as an early-season test for coach Mick Milutinovic’s squad. Shawsheen, which is known for its off-side trap, has played Chelsea tough in the past few years and had defeated Lynn Tech, another of the top teams in the Commonwealth Athletic Conference.
However, after a slow start the Red Devils had little trouble in dispatching with Shawsheen by a decisive 6-1 score. Luis Cruz put Chelsea on the board about halfway through the first half. Shawsheen got the equalizer on a penalty kick 10 minutes later, but Chelsea struck back soon thereafter on a goal by Carlos Lainez.
“Carlos’s goal was very important because Shawsheen had the momentum after their penalty kick, but we took the wind out of their sails when Carlos scored,” said CHS assistant coach Evan Protasowicki.
Cruz reached the back of the Shawsheen net before the half ended to leave matters at 3-1 at the intermission.
Chelsea continued to maintain control of the contest after the break, dominating Shawsheen for long stretches. The ball seldom seemed to cross mid-field into Chelsea territory and when it did, the Red Devil defenders moved up and put the ball right back into the Shawsheen side of the field. Cruz struck for two more goals in the second half for a total of four markers on the day for the senior forward, who proved to be very proficient inside the 18 yard line, making the most of every opportunity he had. Braynor Sanchez also added a goal to ice the CHS victory cake, 6-1.
Last week saw the Red Devils cruise past Minuteman 8-2 in a contest which afforded Milutinovic the opportunity to give ample playing time to his reserves. Chelsea took control from the outset, building a 5-0 lead by halftime. Lainez accounted for three tallies and Cruz reached the back of the Minuteman net twice. Walter Guzman, Thoia Nguyen, and Wilbur Tejada also added goals, which for Nguyen and Tejada were their first varsity scores.
“Our passing has been very clean and the defense has been tight,” said Protasowicki. “It’s been a very nice start to the season.”
Chelsea has a busy week ahead as the pace and the competition both pick up. The Red Devils will host Mystic Valley tomorrow afternoon (Friday) at 3:45. They will entertain Haverhill from the Merrimack Valley League Monday, travel to Greater Lowell Tuesday, and return home next Thursday to play arch-rival Northeast Regional.
CHS volleyball team wins two of three matches
The Chelsea High volleyball team got on the winning track this past week, taking two of its three matches. The Lady Red Devils defeated Lynn Tech last Thursday and then pulled out an exciting triumph over Whittier in five sets.
Coach Lisa Ceccherini’s squad trailed throughout the Whittier contest, losing the first and third games. However, the Lady Red Devils took the fourth game to claw their way back into the match and set the stage for a dramatic showdown in the fifth and deciding game.
“We built our confidence as the match wore on and we knew that we had Whittier on their heels after we won the fourth game,” said Ceccherini. “The girls then became determined to win each point in the fifth game and they got to 15 to win the match.’
Leading the way for the 2012 edition of the Chelsea team are the senior captain trio of Cristal Rodriguez, a three year varsity performer and returning Commonwealth Athletic Conference all-star; Deina Mejia, a two year varsity player; and Danisse Vega, another two year varsity performer.
Also back from last year’s team are juniors Merina Melendez and Rebecca Torrento.
Four of this year’s Lady Red Devil varsity squad have moved up from the JV team: senior Lejla, Skokic; junior Melicia Ivanis; junior Stephanie Moni (who is following in the footsteps of older sister Karolyn, a CAC all-star last season); and junior Stephanie Martinez.
Rounding out the 11-player squad are two newcomers, senior Jasmine Ramos and junior Claire Pizarro.
Ceccherini’s crew has a busy week ahead, traveling to Shawsheen today (Thursday) and to Pope John tomorrow for a 6:00 evening encounter. They will trek to Tyngsboro next Tuesday to take on new CAC foe Notre Dame.
Boys cross country team remains undefeated
The Chelsea High boys cross country team hosted Mystic Valley and Presentation of Mary last Thursday in a tri-meet at Admiral’s Hill. The boys won both meets, 19-39 over Mystic Valley and 15-50 over PMA, to raise their record to 5-0.
Chelsea was led by senior captain Chester Rath who recorded a personal record (PR) on Chelsea’s course, running 18:32. Sophomore Jeffrey Estrada was third overall running a PR of 19:03. Sophomore Faisal Nasimi was right behind in a time of 19:09, also a PR. Senior Tony Nguyen was the fourth Chelsea runner finishing in a time of 19:24 just ahead of freshman Luis Romero who ran 19:26. Both of their efforts were PRs.
Freshman Alex Alvarez was ninth overall, running 20:02, which was also a PR. Senior captain Joseph Arroyo completed the scoring for the Red Devils, running 20:30 for 11th place. Jay Pedrero, who came across the line in 20:33 in 12th spot; Bryan Jimenez, who finished in 20:46 for 13th place; and Joseph Chirinos, who came home in a time of 20:59 in 15th position, all finished well for Chelsea.
“We had a very strong meet. Eighteen of the 25 boys had personal records on our course,” said CHS head coach Don Fay.
The twin wins set up a showdown next Wednesday in Billerica at Shawsheen Tech, the four time defending league champion whom Chelsea nipped in their dual meet last year, 28-29.
“We’re looking forward to an exciting meet against Shawsheen on Wednesday,” said Fay.
Girls cross country team defeats PMA
The Chelsea High girls cross country team split their tri-meet this past week, beating Presentation of Mary 23-38, but falling to Mystic Valley 22-35. The Lady Red Devils were led by Tatyana Almedia, who was third overall in a time of 23:42. She was followed by Patty Guardado in fifth with a clocking of 24:33. Neris Yanes was next in 10th place, running in 26:31. Katherin Villagran was 11th in 26:45. Jailene Paz (14th), Alejandra Sanchez (16th), and Daisy Mejia (17th) all ran well for Chelsea.
The Lady Red Devils, who now stand at 2-4 on the year, will face Shawsheen Tech on Wednesday.