Local Roundup: Oakmont’s Altobelli Leads Local Runners at State Meet
WRENTHAM -- A trio of local standouts wrapped up the high school cross country season at Saturday’s state championship meet.
Oakmont Regional’s Stephen Altobelli led the way in the Division 2 boys’ race, finishing the 5K course in 42nd place with a time of 17:10.98. In the Division 1 boys’ race, North Middlesex Regional’s Tim Mahoney finished in 17:49.43, good for 158th place.
In the girls’ Division 2 race, Lunenburg’s Abby Rodrinquenz was 84th with a time of 20:57.50.
Team winners were St. John’s of Shrewsbury in boys’ Division 1; Parker Charter in boys’ Division 2; Concord-Carlisle in girls’ Division 1; and Mount Greylock in girls’ Division 2.
Fitchburg State 3
Salem State 2
Salem State was on the board before the fans were in their seats, just 54 seconds after the puck dropped, as freshman Landon Hasenfuss put a rebound past goaltender Brian McGrath for the quick 1-0 lead.
With less than five minutes remaining in the first frame, Fitchburg State forward Nick DiNicola blocked a shot in the Falcons defensive zone to create a 2-on-1 through neutral ice with Tyler Warila. DiNicola, streaking down the left wing, flipped a cross-ice pass to his linemate, who deposited a wrist shot top shelf to notch the game at 1-1.
The Falcons broke the tie in the last minute of the second stanza. Freshman Sascha Figi had the outlet pass up the boards from deep in the Falcons defensive zone, tipped through by DiNicola, that Warila corralled down the left wing and potted for his second goal of the game in the upper-right corner past Vikings goaltender Jason Pucciarelli.
Salem knotted the game at 2-2 just 1:50 into the third period. Junior Brody Heleno found an open Derek Makimaa for his second goal of the season. However, the Falcons wasted little time and converted a power-play tally just two minutes later for the lead. Captain James Gordon tipped a blue-line blast from Ricky Kramer for the game-winning goal.
McGrath posted 39 saves for his third win of the season, while his counterpart, Pucciarelli, turned aside 41 shots in the loss.
Fitchburg State (4-2-1, 2-1-1 MASCAC) returns to action next Saturday at the Steve Hoar Memorial Tournament, where the Falcons will face Stonehill College at 4 p.m. Salem State (2-4-2, 1-3 MASCAC) next travels to University of Southern Maine on Tuesday at 7 p.m.
New England College 78
Fitchburg State 64
The Pilgrims jumped out to a 7-2 lead in the opening three minutes of play, fueled by five points from Ricky Leonard, in the consolation game of the Middlebury College Tip-Off Tournament. That advantage moved to nine (13-4) on a jumper by Calvin Cheek with 10:38 remaining. The Falcons answered with a 16-4 run over the next five minutes, capped off on layup from senior Joshua Bosworth for a 20-17 edge.
On the next possession, a 3-point field goal from New England College’s Trevor Parker knotted the contest at 20-20. The Pilgrims ended the half with 13 of the last 15 points, including a 3-pointer from the left corner by Parker as the halftime buzzer sounded for a 33-22 lead.
Out of the half, the Falcons scored 12 of the opening 15 points, cutting the deficit to just two (36-34) on a layup from junior Jerrell Gomes with 15:31 left. The Pilgrim lead moved between two and seven over the next few minutes, before a layup from Fitchburg State’s Nicholas Tracy pulled the Falcons to within one (52-51) with just over nine minutes remaining.
After trading 3-pointers, the Pilgrims rattled off an 11-2 run for a 66-56 lead and were never threatened again the rest of the contest.
Izaiah Winston-Brooks paced three Pilgrims in double figures with 21 points for all-tournament honors. Leonard and Parker each added 13. Kareem Octavien pulled down a team-best eight rebounds, while three Pilgrims each had three assists.
Bosworth led the Falcons 21 points and nine rebounds, while junior Brandon Harris had 14 points off the bench. Gomes scored 12 points to go along with three assists for Fitchburg State, garnering him all-tournament honors.
The Falcons (0-2) will next travel to Southern Vermont to take on the Mountaineers on Tuesday for a contest starting at 7:30 p.m. The Pilgrims will host the Raiders of Rivier University on the Tuesday with a 5:30 p.m. start time.
Fitchburg State 89
Saint Joseph’s 50
The Falcons were sparked by junior guard Mikala Malboeuf, of Fitchburg, in the consolation game of the Sain Joseph’s Tip-Off Tournament.
Malboeuf finished with a game-best 22 points, three rebounds and one steal, while sophomore Angelina Marazzi posted 20 points, six boards, five assists and one steal. Newcomer Mikaela Mitchell added to the mix, finishing with 12 points, three rebounds, three assists, one steal and three blocks.
For the Fighting Saints, freshman guard Dymond Collins netted a team-leading 11 points, three rebounds, one steal and one assist, while sophomore Daja Black chipped in with six points, three caroms and two steals.
The Falcons (1-2) will next visit Southern Vermont on Tuesday for a 5:30 p.m. contest. The Fighting Saints (1-2) will travel to Fisher College on Wednesday for a 5 p.m. non-conference bout.
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