Sporting Teams Start Hearts With Close Opening Games

Just as the first snows arrived on the Island yesterday, other signs of winter were in evidence around the Island this past week.

In addition to Christmas sales and plastic lawn Santas, the young athletes of the Vineyard could be found practicing their jumpers and perfecting their slap shots, as the high school sports scene moved from the autumnal fields of soccer and football inside to the cozy confines of ice rinks and basketball courts.

Defeat Snuffs Football Superbowl Hopes

Asked to describe his team's effort in last Friday's crushing 20-16 loss to the Crusaders from Cape Cod Tech/Harwich, no-nonsense Vineyarders football coach Donald Herman doesn't have to think long for an answer.

"Soft," he said roundly of his team's effort in the loss that effectively eliminated the team from going to the postseason. "We were soft and we were flat. I am not happy with what is going on right now."

Lots of Guts, Glimpses of Glory Shade the Sports Year of 2007

It was a year of ‘what ifs' for the teams of the Martha's Vineyard Regional High School in 2007, as several teams missed the playoffs by the slimmest of margins, while others lost games in the state tournament that could have turned on the bounce of a puck or a roll of the ball.

Mohawks and Lucky Pins: Superstitions Wield Power

Former Red Sox player Nomar Garciaparra could not bat without checking his batting gloves. Kevin Garnett of the Boston Celtics will not get on the floor without patting his hands in the rosin.

The pro athletes have their pre-game rituals and so too do the Vineyarders.

For members of the varsity football team and the cheerleading squad, the superstitions are sometimes hidden, oftentimes underneath the jerseys, helmets and uniforms, but they are there nonetheless.

NBC Football Postpones Segment on Vineyarders

Island residents who stayed with their television sets on Sunday night past the Patriots and into Sunday Night Football were hoping to see the promised NBC coverage of the Island high school football team. It has been rescheduled for Nov. 18 and Nov. 25. Earlier schedules had the segment airing on Nov. 4 and Nov. 11.

Vineyarder Teams Quick Off the Marks With Wins and Strong Season Outlook

With two wins already under their belt, the high school golf team is off to a fast start.

Anchored by Tony Grillo, arguably the best young golfer in the state, who recently won his second consecutive Massachusetts junior championship, many already are calling the team a lock to make the state tournament.

But in the match-play style of high school golf, even the most talented player cannot carry a team alone.

According to coach Doug DeBettencourt, young Grillo won’t have to.

NBC Trains Television Spotlight On the Vineyard Football Team

It’s show time.

No, not the NBC special on the Vineyard high school football team that will air nationally twice next month, though the Island football community got a kick out of NBC camera crews trailing every facet of practice, the locker room, then filming a solid 35-20 win over bulky Hull High School last Friday.

“Preseason’s over. The league starts on Friday,” said junior inside linebacker Cody Brewer while organizing his derby fishing gear on Saturday morning after the game.

Vineyard Football Team Notches Second Win, Defeating Carver

The Vineyard football team passed its second test of the season on Saturday, defeating a dangerous opponent on the road in Carver High School by 14-0 to remain undefeated on the young season.

For the second week in a row, the Vineyarders found themselves locked in a tight battle to bitter end. After beating Old Rochester 7-0 in their home opener last week, the Vineyarders on Saturday again led only a single score going into the fourth quarter when Nick Viera scored on a 45-yard punt return to seal the win.

Vineyard School Football Team Continues Its Undefeated Season

The Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School football team is having a good week.

In addition to rolling over Littleton/Broomfield at home on Friday by a final of 29-14 to remain undefeated on the season, a news crew from NBC Sports is traveling with the team this week and taping a segment that will be aired later this year during a halftime segment of the network’s NFL Sunday Night Football program.

Vineyard School Football, Golf Teams Continue Winning Ways

Daylight is on the wane, temperatures are dipping and beaches are emptying, but on the high school athletic fields the fall sports season is just starting to heat up.

As one Vineyard sports fan put it this week, “The leaves are turning, the busy season is over, and there is high school football on Saturday and the Patriots on Sunday . . . not to mention the Red Sox are going to the playoffs . . . it’s the most magical time of the year.”