Sports 09-07-2017

CHS football team kicks off 2017 season Friday night

The Chelsea High football team will open its 2017 season Friday evening when Coach Jack Halas and his Red Devils host Lynn Tech under the lights at Chelsea Stadium.

The first kick-off of the new campaign is set for 7:00.

Leading the way for the Red Devils will be a quartet of senior captains,  Zach Leo, Tony Bui, David Bui, and Nelson Hernandez, who are among a group of 10 seniors on the varsity squad.

“This is an excellent group of seniors who provide a good example to our younger guys,” said Halas. “These seniors have led the way in our off-season conditioning program. They were begging to get into our weight room the Monday following Thanksgiving.

“We have had our best off-season yet since I’ve been coaching at Chelsea High,” continued the coach. “We have seen some solid gains in strength across the board. We even started a 1,000 Lbs. Club, which is the one-rep max combined of bench press, squat, and deadlift, and both Tony Bui and Zach Leo made the club.

“In addition to our dedication in the weight room, we were fortunate that our Athletic Director, Amanda Alpert, secured us a grant to upgrade our weight room,” added Halas. “We now have a beautiful weight room supplied by the Gronkowski Fitness Company.  All the same equipment that is in the Gronk Zones in the Boston Sports Clubs is now in the Chelsea High weight room.”

The Red Devils engaged in a pair of pre-season scrimmages, taking on Latin Academy August 26 and Saugus this past Friday.

“Latin Academy had a strong running game and we played them decently,” said Halas. “Overall, we played fairly well for our first time out.  Early on in pre-season, our numbers were so low that we couldn’t hold any live team periods in practice, so Latin Academy was our first live experience.

“Saugus threw the ball about 75% of the time, which is rare at the high school level. We fell behind early 21-0 but showed a lot of fight by clawing our way back into the game,” said Halas. “We had some faulty lighting issues at the stadium that cut the game short in the middle of the third quarter when we were trailing, 27-21. I was very pleased with our offense, especially our offensive line.  We had multiple 12-plus play drives resulting in touchdowns, which is exactly how we want to play.”

As for the season-opener against visiting Lynn Tech, Halas expects a stern challenge for his squad.

“Lynn Tech returns two all-conference running backs, so it will serve as a tough first test for us,” said Halas. “We expect a physical football game.”

Looking ahead to the fall season, Halas expressed confidence in his 2017 edition of the Red Devils.

“The senior leadership, combined with our offensive line and front seven on defense, are the strengths of our team,” noted Halas. “I expect big years out of senior captains Zach Leo and David Bui.  These two should be able to replace the loss of graduated captain Nick Ieng, who is attending Westfield State on a football scholarship.”

The one drawback thus far for Chelsea has been the low turnout. “Our numbers are very low with only 34 kids in uniform,” noted Halas.

After the Lynn Tech contest, Halas and his crew will travel to Northeast Regional Vocational School next Friday.

CHS boys soccer team opens with 4-0 victory

The names may change, but the result stays the same for the Chelsea High boys soccer team, which opened its 2017 season with a 4-0 victory over Shawsheen Tech Tuesday afternoon at Chelsea Stadium.

“For a variety of reasons, this has been the biggest turnover for our team in terms of personnel in many years,” said CHS assistant coach Evan Protasowicki. “We have a very young team with a lot of new faces.”

Among the newcomers to the CHS program is senior transfer students Jephte Marcellus, who provided some instant punch for the Red Devils, assisting on three goals in his first appearance in a Chelsea uniform.

Sophomore Delmer Romero, another newcomer to the varsity squad, scored the first two Red Devil goals, the initial one coming just 30 seconds into the game on Chelsea’s first offensive push forward of the season.

“I think we caught Shawsheen a bit flat-footed at the start of the game,” said Protasowicki. Senior captain Kevin Umanzor-Torres delivered a through-ball to Marcellus, who chipped it past the oncoming Shawsheen keeper, setting up Romero for an easy tap into the open goal.

The Marcellus-Romero connection bookended the half with a goal with only a minute to go before intermission when a shot by Marcellus was deflected by a Shawsheen defender in the box. Romero gathered-in the loose ball, made a move on a Shawsheen defender, and then delivered a nice strike from a difficult angle Senior Kevin Valle, who has been recovering from a knee injury he suffered over the summer, went into the game for a brief stretch to start the second half and made the most of his appearance, scoring his first goal of the season to increase the CHS lead to 3-0. Marcellus sent a nice through-pass to Valle, who made a fine finish amidst heavy traffic.

Five minutes later at 54:00, Romero earned his third point of the game with a corner kick delivery that was headed into the back of the Shawsheen net by senior defenseman Carlos Arevala.

“Carlos made a hie run and finish,” noted Protasowicki.

The 4-0 lead gave CHS head coach Mick Milutinovic an opportunity to use a number of his freshmen to close out the game. Senior keeper Bryan Armas and junior keeper Diego Granados split the chores in net to share the shutout.

“It was a nice way to start the season,” noted Protasowicki, “but we still have a lot of work to do.”

Milutinovic and his crew were set to trek to Northeast Regional Vocational School this afternoon (Thursday). Northeast has been the chief rival to the Red Devils’ supremacy in the Commonwealth Athletic Conference in the past few seasons and this year should prove no exception.

Chelsea will journey to Haverhill to face Whittier Tech Tuesday and will return home next Thursday to host Lynn Tech.

Bruins Beat

by Bob Morello

Bruins rookies ready to hit the ice

Boston Bruins hockey is back on track, beginning with Rookie training camp opening September 8. Included are Bruins prospects who participated in last year’s tournament and also played in at least one regular season game with Boston in 2016-17), along with several invitees, and is scheduled to run through September 11, at HarborCenter in Buffalo. Players who participated in last year’s tournament and also played in at least one regular season game with Boston in 2016-17, include forwards Anton Blidh, Peter Cehlarik (not participating due to shoulder surgery), Danton Heinen, Sean Kuraly, defensemen Brandon Carlo, Matt Grzelcyk, Rob O’Gara and goaltender Zane McIntyre.

This will be the third consecutive year the Bruins will have participated in the Prospects Challenge. The Bruins’ rookies will compete against the Buffalo Sabres, Pittsburgh Penguins and New Jersey Devils rookies in the round-robin challenge featuring prospects from each of those teams. The participating teams will each play three games during the course of the event, which is being held entirely at HarborCenter.

Currently Boston’s Challenge roster includes: Forwards: Anders Bjork, Jake DeBrusk, Ryan Fitzgerald, Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson, Jesse Gabrielle, Danton Heinen, Justin Hickman, Joona Koppanen, Sean Kuraly, Cedric Pare, Zach Senyshyn, and Oskar Steen, with rookie camp invitees Shawn Boudrias, Alex Gacek, and James Hamblin. Defensemen: Victor Berglund, Brandon Carlo, Matt Grzelcyk, Emil Johansson, Jeremy Lauzon, Charlie McAvoy, Rob O’Gara, and Jakub Zboril, plus invitees Connor Clifton, Own Headrick, and Ethan Sakowich. Invited goaltenders are Kyle Keyser and Luke Richardson.

Schedule for the tournament will have the Bruins taking on Pittsburgh’s rookies (Friday, September 8 at 3:30pm); Saturday, Saturday, September 9 vs. Buffalo at 7:00pm;

Followed by a practice day, and their final game will be on Monday, September 11 vs. New Jersey at noon.

Single Game Tickets for the 2017-18 season will go on sale today (Thursday, September 7, at 11:00am. Purchase tickets on, through the official mobile app of the Boston Bruins, by phone by calling Ticketmaster at 1-800-745-3000 or at the TD Garden Box Office.

The Bruins will open the season against the Nashville Predators at TD Garden on Thursday, October 5 at 7:00pm.  The Bruins will enjoy a season-long, six-game home stand beginning in February and ending in March, with games against the Carolina Hurricanes (2/27), Pittsburgh Penguins (3/1), Montreal Canadiens (3/3), Detroit Red Wings (3/6), Philadelphia Flyers (3/8) and the Chicago Blackhawks (3/10) at TD Garden.

For games played at TD Garden, tickets will range from $30.00-$453.00. In addition to seat location, ticket prices will vary depending on opponent and date of game. Ticket prices are subject to change and there is an eight-ticket limit per game.

Although full-season ticket packages are sold out, Bruins fans can join the Season Ticket Waiting List to score priority access for when full- season ticket packages become available. To join the Season Ticket Waiting List, fans should contact the Bruins at 617-624-2327, option 1.  Additionally, a limited number of partial and full season memberships are available in the Premium Club at the TD Garden. Fans interested in Premium Club memberships can contact the Bruins at 617-624-2582.

2017-18 Game Plans are also on sale. Each plan offers big discounts with an average savings of $600 off of box office prices with no facility fee. With a Game Plan, fans are granted access to a Legends Membership and the ability to purchase 2018 Stanley Cup Playoffs® tickets before the general public.

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