Josh McLinden – Special Correspondent
Everybody grab your sweatshirts and jeans! Guys, break out the work boots, and ladies, its time for Uggs. Fall is winding down (where oh where did October go?) and as temperatures drop, excitement for winter sports heats up. Now that football, soccer, field hockey, cross country, and golf are over or ending, the coolest sports of all- pun intended- are about to start; let’s see what this season has in store for basketball, hockey, track, wrestling, and swimming.
After coming off a definite rebuilding season with most of the team playing varsity for the first time, boys basketball is looking to hold their own weight and improve on last year’s 7-11 season. This year, the team has eight returning players, including junior Malcolm Navarro and senior captain Christian Baker, who are both entering their third seasons on varsity. Some talented JV players from last year, including Alex Buckler, have been working hard all year under the leadership of Captain Sam Gillespie and are looking to make an impact this season. After missing the state tournament by only a couple close games last year, Holliston boys’ basketball is setting their eyes on the tourney, hopefully becoming the first boys’ team to make it in many years. Because big rivals such as Hopkinton, Medfield, and Medway lost some key seniors, it’s a definite possibility.
The girls basketball team had a different story last year: a 10-10 season saw them become the first to reach states in four years before losing to Walpole in the tournament. A very talented TVL this year looks daunting, but you know how competitive senior Captain Vicky Sostilio can be- ‘The Llama’ loves a challenge! Sostilio (center) and her junior sisters Jordan and Jackie (both forwards) bring an adorable family warmth to the team, not to mention plenty of talent. Captains Ali Matez and Ashley Higgins, both guards, provide experience and talent to the team, and with the multi-talented guard Maryalice McKenna, the team will hopefully return to states for the second time in as many years.
Holliston hockey had a scare last year, but it wasn’t on the ice: the team was nearly cut from the school due to budget cuts. Thanks to some smooth talking from the captains, however, the team is back to skate once again! Many talented players from last year’s 6-11-3 season are returning, including team-high scorers, TVL All Star Connor Dupont and Captain Johnny Georgallas. Team MVP and Captain Chris Lamont and two-time All Star and Captain John Powers round out the talented leadership of the team. Returning defensemen Jason Bedard, Jason Lussier, and Justin Dunham provide even more talented experience to a team who has their first shot at states in years after a long offseason of hard conditioning.
Holliston High’s track and field teams, now used to being merely competitive, are looking to return to their dominating days of the class of 2008. After losing close meets last year to rival TVL powerhouses Westwood, Hopkinton, and Medfield (finishing with a 5-3 record), this year’s team is looking to fill the shoes of last year’s seniors. Which may be tough, considering Collari wore a size 13. However, like last year, the boys team is relying on a balance of experienced veterans and maturing youth: we will see the return of school-record-holding shot putter Cam ‘the Beast’ Chisholm, junior, easily the best thrower in the league, backed up by an impressive horde of other throwers. The team has a variety of sprinters, including mid-distance Devin Sanford and short-distance Andrew ‘Jimmy’ Krauss; Krauss looks to take one of the top three league spots in the 45m hurdles this season. The team’s distance events are held together by cross country’s trifecta: Captain Andy Mysliwiec, Captain Evan Reseska, and Mr. Ben Moody, each of whom excels in a multitude of distance events ranging from Reseska’s league-leading 2 mile to Moody and Mysliwiec in the mile and 600m. The guys indoor track team is looking for a comeback and a TVL title long overdue.
Last year’s girls team saw a similar situation, dropping three close meets to the three biggest competitors in the league. However with a strong showing by the senior class, coupled with the talented youth, the girls are also ready to fight the good fight. Captain Vickie Palmatier has been training vigorously all summer and fall and is ready to dominate the TVL in shot put like her inspiration Emmaline Berg. The girls sprinting team, led by the double punch of Captains Kendra Costello and Meredith ‘Gurl’ McKunes, has both talent and depth, despite the loss of TVL All-Stars Marissa Bynoe and Sarah Sams. Under Captain Julie Blackmore’s experience, the distance squad features talented juniors such as Jill Rosati, Anna Manello, and Kaylee Kazubal, all of whom are coming off a dynamite cross country season. It should be a very interesting season to watch for both boys and girls indoor track.
The often-overlooked Holliston swim team is gunning for another decent season after last years 2-2, third place finish in the TVL. Despite losing All Star Captain Matt Flynn, Captains Sam Wolpert and David Kriegsman provide both experience and leadership to the team, while youth such as sophomore Ryan McGee give hope for a promising season.
The wrestling team had a very strong showing last year: a 12-6, second place finish in the TVL, closely behind Norton. With no seniors on the team last year, the entire team is returning, giving a very promising outlook for this season. The teams leadership, Captains Tim Garry, Brad Losurdo, Dom DeFeudis, and Larry Enright, have set lofty goals for the team this year: they look to take the TVL and hopefully the sectional title, then send the team to the state tournament.