Winter Sports Update



The high school winter season begins in early December, slows down a bit around the holidays, then comes back in full force in January.  Let’s check in with some of the local squads to see how things are going with the winter-season teams at Manchester Essex.


Ice Hockey

The Rockport ice hockey team – a co-op with Manchester-Essex – started the season off with a win and a loss, and for the most part have continued the pattern to this point, earning a 5-5 overall record.

On Dec. 27, it was a 4-3 win over Swampscott at home, followed by a 3-1 loss at home to Northeast Metro.  Then it was a 3-1 win over Pentucket on Jan. 4, followed by a 5-1 loss to North Reading on Jan. 7.  A Jan. 11 matchup with Amesbury was postponed to a later date, but the Vikings bounced back with another win against Lynn (a 5-1 score) on Jan. 16.  Up next is Amesbury, and hopefully the team can break the streak with a second win in a row.

“So far we are still trying to find consistency in our game,” explains Rockport coach Kyle Nelson.  “We have had a decent amount of time off in the last week, so the team is feeling fresh and eager to play.”

Manchester Essex is well-represented on this squad, with ME seniors TJ Brunner, Dougie Pratt, Mark Pollock, Jack Crompton, Michael DeOreo, Finn Lawler providing leadership, along with junior Quinn Brady and freshmen Danny Brophy and Aaron Crompton.

“The seniors and Quinn have brought varsity experience and leadership into this season so far,” says Nelson.  “When things haven't gone our way, those guys have still been tenacious and positive to try to right the ship.  The freshmen have brought a spark and depth to our squad.”


Do not sleep on the Manchester Essex basketball teams – both the girls' and boys’ squads look fantastic to this point of the winter season.

The girls’ team is 8-2 overall and 4-2 in the Cape Ann League, good enough for the top spot in the CAL Baker Division.  The boys are also atop the CAL Baker with a perfect divisional record (6-0) and have suffered only one loss on the season (the Hornets are 8-1).

The boys were slated to head to Triton (Jan. 16) and Hamilton-Wenham (Jan. 20) this week after picking up wins over CAL foes Pentucket and Georgetown last week, while the girls were scheduled to host the Vikings and Generals on the same dates after splitting last week’s games with a loss to Pentucket and win over Georgetown.

Swimming & Diving

The girls swim team is 3-1 overall and 1-1 in the CAL, good enough for third place, while the boys’ team is 2-2 and searching for its first divisional win of the season (0-2 in the CAL).  The girls picked up wins over Lynnfield, Ipswich and Hamilton-Wenham so far (with the lone loss to Triton), while the boys have lost to Lynnfield and Triton but defeated Hamilton-Wenham and Ipswich in December.  After this weekend’s CAL Dive Meet, the Hornets are slated to face Hamilton-Wenham on Jan. 24.


Indoor Track

The ME indoor track teams returned to its first action in the new year with the MSTCA State Freshman/Sophomore Meet at the Reggie Lewis Center on Jan. 8.

Megan Hurd had a big day in the meet, finishing fourth in the long jump (15’, 8.5”), 11th in the 55 (7.99) and anchoring the eight-place 4x200 relay team (1:57.88, the eighth fastest time in school history) along with Abi Kent, Charlotte Crocker and Izzy Zagrobski. Kent’s 23’ 7” in the shot was a personal best, while Zabrobski and Sabine Cooper performed well in the two-mile.

Highlights for the boys included Nicky Clements (7.45) and Luke Donohoe (7.56) achieving personal bests in the 55, along with a personal best from Henry Stevens in the 600 (1:49.07).  Sammy Bothwell combined with Clements, Donohoe and Robbie Silverstein to record a 1:48.66 in the 4x200.

Up next for the track teams are a Cape Ann League Meet against Hamilton-Wenham scheduled for Jan. 17, followed by the Div. 5 Relay Meet at the Reggie Lewis Center on Jan. 21.


Alpine Skiing

The MERHS alpine ski teams have yet to hit the slopes, with the boys' and girls’ teams’ seasons scheduled to begin with a multi-team event on Jan. 18 against Andover and Masconomet, followed by a tilt with the North Andover and Haverhill teams on Jan. 23 (both meets begin at 3:45 p.m. at Bradford Ski Resort).



While the ski teams have yet to begin their season, the ME gymnastics team picked up some early wins to begin their winter season.  On Jan. 12, it was a 133.650-115.150 win over Gloucester, and two days later the Hornets beat Marblehead by a score of 136.850-124.000.  Up next for the team is Bishop Fenwick (Jan. 17) and Winthrop (Jan. 19).

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