The Manchester Essex Varsity ski team was on the hill and racing again last week. On Jan. 21 the girls faced off against Swampscott and Haverhill and the boys raced on Jan. 22 going up against St. Johns Prep and then Haverhill. Junior Captain Emma Wonson led the charge for the Hornets. She came in first in the match against Swampscott and second against Haverhill, just missing the first place spot by less than half a second. “Emma has been with the team in some form or another since I began coaching,” said her father and head coach Tim Wonson, “she was at the first meeting I ever had with the team. She was in first grade and handed out forms. She has always loved skiing and racing and I’m really proud of and excited for her with this result. She has definitely put in the work.” Gracie Susko put together a solid run, coming in third and then fifth, followed closely by Lydia Schwartz with a fourth and sixth place finish. Every girl on the team, except one, scored points in both races including Anya Bixby, Bonnie Gerhardt, Sienna Crocker and Casey Twombly. The one girl who did not grab any points was Captain Lilly Coote, “Lilly was having a good run,” said Coach Wonson, “she was carrying a good head of steam into the flats when her ski snagged some rutty snow and got ripped off. She wasn’t hurt but it was pretty exciting.”
The boys did not fare as well losing to both St Johns and Haverhill. “The boys team skied well,’” said Coach Lizzy White, “you can see a real progression in skill on the team. It is fun to watch.” Captain Ryan Clark suffered much the same fate as his Co-Captain Coote, he managed to keep his skis on but was tossed from his line and out of the course, missing a gate and ending his race short of the finish line. Eli Hammett put together a great run coming in seventh overall in a field of over one hundred and ten racers. Taking third in both head-to-head match ups. Mason O’Grady skied well coming in sixth against Haverhill. Cooper O’Brien, Daniel Garret-Marts and Cameron light all were able to gain points in the race as well.
The Manchester Essex Hornets improved to 3-3 on the season with two victories over Hamilton Wenham this week. On Tuesday the Hornets were on the road against the Generals. After a low scoring first quarter the Hornets trailed by 1 in the frame. In the second quarter the Hornets built a small lead and were able to hang on in the second half to win 37-28. GG Huet and Emma Fitzgerald led the Hornets with 13 and 12 points respectively. Lily Athanas added 5, Madeline Lai 4, and Calista Lai 3.
On Friday, the teams had a rematch, this time at home. The Hornets were up by 1 point at half time and went on a 17-3 run in the third quarter to build lead and go on to win the game 44-28. GG Huet had 17 points in the effort including 5 3-pointers. Emma Fitzgerald had 16 points and 18 rebounds for the Hornets. Lily Athanas added 5 and a strong defensive performance. Kendall Newton and Calista Lai added 3 points each to finish out the scoring.
The Hornets will host Lynnfield on Wednesday for Senior Night honoring Lily Athanas, Bradlee Brooks, GG Huet, Madeline Lai, Sylvie Oldeman, Emily Schuh, and Hattie Wilson.
Through 6 games, the boys basketball team is off to an impressive 4 and 2 start. The team’s only two losses came to undefeated Newburyport and Georgetown. The boys have wins against Lynnfield, Ipswich, Triton and North Reading. The team is led by captains Jack Shaw, AJ Palazolla, and Frank Wood. Playing great for the Hornets as well have been brothers Alex (senior) and Cade (freshman) Furse, Will Larson, Gavin Glass, Patrick Cronin and Luke Smith. The team is very excited to be playing basketball and thankful to the administration for giving the players a chance to have a season.
Please check out the livestream of games on the Manchester Essex Boosters Facebook page.