Massey Mustangs

Lady Gens rebound after season opening volleyball loss

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

After a season opening defeat at the hands of a strong Kingsville Cavalier team last Tuesday, the General Amherst Lady Gens senior girls volleyball team rebounded well two days later.

The Lady Gens lost 25-13, 25-10 and 25-8 in Kingsville but then swept the visiting Massey Mustangs 25-19, 25-22 and 25-15 in a match played at General Amherst High School to even their WECSSAA Tier 1 record at 1-1.

General Amherst’s Vanessa Pidutti spikes the ball during last Thursday evening’s senior girls volleyball match against Massey.

“We played much better today,” General Amherst head coach Jeff Miller said after Thursday’s match. “We played to our ability level. We played a much better defensive effort. We moved on defense and then we were more fluid on offence.”

Miller said the first game against Kingsville was tough as the Cavaliers return the bulk of their players from a team that went to OFSAA last season.

“We struggled and they jumped right on us and made us pay,” said Miller. “They gave us a serious kick in the butt.”
The Lady Gens rebounded well against a team in Massey that they thought going in they could beat if they played well.

Miller said they need Vanessa Pidutti and Emery Lucier, the latter a Grade 9 player, to be good outside hitters. They were able to be that against the Mustangs.

General Amherst went up against the Massey Mustangs last Thursday evening. Payton Laing hits the ball back across the net.

“(Thursday), they kind of dominated the game offensively. They didn’t make many errors and got a bunch of hits. They played the way they need to play if we want to get a bunch of wins.”

The Lady Gens’ success in Tier 2 last year moved them back up into the top tier this season but Miller said the program continues to develop. General Amherst hosts OFSAA next year and while they want to do well this season, the Lady Gens also have an eye for the future.

“We’re building for next year and beyond,” said Miller.

Lucier believed the Lady Gens played well Thursday, adding they “got better as the match went on.”

Emery Lucier spikes the ball over the outstretched arms of a Massey defender.

The Kingsville game was a difficult one, she stated, as she thought the team let the fact they were playing Kingsville get into their heads and drain their confidence before the match even started. She said she has been welcomed to the team as a Grade 9 player and enjoys the level of competition in senior girls volleyball.

“It’s harder but it’s going to challenge me and the team to play better,” she said.

Lucier added the focus is this season.

“I want to win,” she said.

The Lady Gens were at St. Joseph Tuesday after this issue went to press but have a 7 p.m. home game Thursday against Tecumseh Vista Academy.

Jr. Bulldogs fall to 0-3 after 15-6 loss to Massey

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

The General Amherst Bulldogs junior football injury lost their game to Massey last Tuesday but are hoping they haven’t lost their quarterback for a lengthy time period.

The Bulldogs lost 15-6 to the Massey Mustangs last Tuesday at Centennial Park but what was even more worrisome for the Bulldogs was an ankle injury to Emmitt Rosati, who also plays key roles on defense and special teams as well. Rosati suffered the injury in the second quarter when another player fell on him and he could not play the rest of the game.

Evan Beadow makes his way between two Massey tacklers during General Amherst’s junior football game with the Mustangs Oct. 10. Massey won 15-6.

“Hopefully it’s just a sprain,” said head coach Dino Rosati after the game.

Should Emmitt, who is also his son, not be able to play future games, the Bulldogs will look to alter their playbook to make things easier for backup quarterback Eric Blanchette.

Dino said that Blanchette started to settle in as quarterback after Emmitt’s injury.

The Bulldogs looked like the were going to score first as they got to the Massey one-yard line in the first quarter. However, a fumble killed that drive.

General Amherst’s Riley Sesto (20) looks for running room against Massey Oct. 10 at Centennial Park.

Massey took a 1-0 lead into the half after a punt went through the General Amherst end zone for the single. The Mustangs added two third quarter touchdowns thanks to a one-yard Matt Lajoie touchdown run and a 30-yard fumble return by Evan Campaglia.

The Bulldogs got on the board in the fourth quarter when Owyn Hayes intercepted a pass and ran 105 yards down the sidelines for a touchdown.

“It was a tough loss,” said Dino. “The defense stepped up. We can’t ask any more.”

Dino said the tackling was better as compared to the Bulldogs’ previous game against Kennedy, calling it “100 per cent improved.”

“Overall, our defense played well. They made so many nice tackles. The tackling improved a lot,” he said.

The General Amherst Bulldogs junior team gather around their coaches after their Oct. 10 game against Massey at Centennial Park.

Assistant coach Spencer Duby said it was unfortunate to lose Emmitt, but also praised the team’s defensive effort.

“I think our defense played great today,” he said after the Oct. 10 game. “We’ve got to give our defense credit. We were able to take it to them today.”

The Bulldogs were at Villanova yesterday for a 3 p.m. game and return home for their final two regular season games Oct. 24 versus Catholic Central and Oct. 31 against Sandwich. The home games Oct. 24 and Oct. 31 are scheduled to start at 4 p.m.

Villanova homecoming ends in 41-34 loss

 

By Jonathan Martin

St. Thomas of Villanova Catholic High School’s homecoming game started out with promise.

Within the first minute of play, the home team had already scored a touchdown against Vincent Massey Secondary School. An hour and a half in, Villanova was still keeping a tight grip on its lead.

By the fourth quarter, though, the tides had turned.

The Villanova Wildcats (grey jerseys) try to take the ball from the Massey Mustangs in Villanova's 2016 homecoming game.  The Mustangs swiped the victory 41-34.

The Villanova Wildcats (grey jerseys) try to take the ball from the Massey Mustangs in Villanova’s 2016 homecoming game. The Mustangs swiped the victory 41-34.

“You gotta play all four quarters and they played a bit harder,” said Villanova head coach Sean Grondin. “They started piling guys up in the box. We had one and two-play drives that go for touchdowns. Eventually, if they start stopping those two drives, then we get in a little bit of trouble.”

“We knew coming in Villanova was a tough team,” Massey coach Dan Gray said. “But our team came together, our kids played well and so we couldn’t be happier with this win.”

Gray said Massey’s plan was to block running back Jacob Savoni, which he admits they largely failed to do.

The Villanova Wildcats and Massey Mustangs did battle in WECSSAA senior football action last Friday in LaSalle. Massey won 41-34.

The Villanova Wildcats and Massey Mustangs did battle in WECSSAA senior football action last Friday in LaSalle. Massey won 41-34.

“Our plan before the win started was to throw the ball like crazy,” Grondin said. “They know who Savoni is. The city knows who Savoni is. Ultimately, with this win, it kind of curtailed that and we went with out bell cow.”

The game ended with Massey stealing the game with a 41-34 win.

Villanova’s next game will be at Windsor Stadium Oct. 28. They will play Holy Names Catholic High School.

Sr. Bulldogs drop to 0-5 after being blanked by Massey

 

By Ron Giofu

The General Amherst Bulldogs took the field on a chilly night last Thursday and the reception they got from the Massey Mustangs could be described that way as well.

The Bulldogs and Mustangs played in the third game of a tripleheader at Tecumseh Vista Academy as part of the annual “WECSSAA Football for Breast Cancer” event with the Mustangs coming away with a 36-0 victory.

General Amherst’s Ellis Rosati (28, white jersey) tries to fight off a pair of Massey tacklers last Thursday night at Tecumseh Vista Academy.

General Amherst’s Ellis Rosati (28, white jersey) tries to fight off a pair of Massey tacklers last Thursday night at Tecumseh Vista Academy.

Massey scored on their first three drives of the football game, including a nine-yard run on the opening drive, a 76-yard touchdown run on the second and a one-yard touchdown run, the latter being preceded by a General Amherst fumble.

The Mustangs added an unconverted touchdown in the second quarter, 31-yard touchdown pass, to make it 27-0 game at halftime. They got another touchdown in the third quarter on a one-yard run with the Bulldogs conceding a safety in the fourth quarter on a third down punt play deep in their own territory.

Bulldogs head coach John Rudak said his team is playing as best as they can but they don’t have enough players to overcome the challenges they face.

“The guys are working hard. We just don’t have the numbers,” he said. “In some situations, we don’t have the skill as well.”

The Bulldogs have been battling injuries and depth issues at points this season but Rudak said the players are continuing to work as hard as they can. He said they weren’t as worn down as they were in their previous game, a 64-12 loss at Essex, but they played hard.

Nathan Charron (13) carries the ball Oct. 13 against Massey.

Nathan Charron (13) carries the ball Oct. 13 against Massey.

General Amherst has a shot for its first victory of the season Friday night as they played the Brennan Cardinals at Windsor Stadium. The Cardinals are also 0-5. That game starts at 6 p.m.

The season concludes the following week with a game against L’Essor at Centennial Park Oct. 28 at 3 p.m.

In the other senior football games at Tecumseh Vista Academy last Thursday, Sandwich beat St. Anne 49-0 while Villanova downed Brennan 36-14.

Jr. Bulldogs drop 28-0 decision to Massey in first game of regular season

 

By Ron Giofu

 

The General Amherst Bulldogs junior football team headed to south Windsor last week but didn’t come home with the result they wanted.

The Bulldogs dropped their season opener 28-0 to the Massey Mustangs last Wednesday afternoon. The game, played at Massey, saw the home team do much of their damage offensively in the first half thanks to a three-yard touchdown run in the first quarter, a second three-yard touchdown run in the second quarter and a 19-yard touchdown run, also in the second quarter.

The Bulldogs dodged a pair of bullets late in the half when a 55-yard Massey punt return touchdown was nullified thanks to a Massey penalty for blocking in the back and a 45-yard touchdown was wiped out for the same reason.

The Mustangs scored on another 19-yard touchdown run in the third quarter.

All of Massey’s touchdowns were converted.

General Amherst's Calvin Cribley (right) goes up for a ball against a Massey defender Sept. 21.

General Amherst’s Calvin Cribley (right) goes up for a ball against a Massey defender Sept. 21.

Despite the loss, the General Amherst coaches saw some positives.

“I think we’ve got something to build on,” said coach Dino Rosati. “They hung tough with those guys. (Massey) is a AAA school.”

General Amherst, a smaller AA school, features many players new to football, said Rosati. Even when they got down, they kept fighting.

“They never really hung their heads. There was no quit,” said Rosati.

Rosati said their wide receivers and quarterback are their strengths but the line needs some work. Better pass protecting is needed, he said. The team also needs to block better to allow for an improved running game.

“Once (the line) gels and gets more time, we’ll see improvement,” said Rosati.

General Amherst players surround the Massey ball carrier during the Sept. 21 game at Massey. The home team won 28-0.

General Amherst players surround the Massey ball carrier during the Sept. 21 game at Massey. The home team won 28-0.

The Bulldogs also have to improve on their tackling, he added.

“(Massey) got a lot of yards after the initial tackle,” said Rosati. “It kept drives going when we should have stopped them.”

The Bulldogs aim to get better each week, he stated.

“It’s not how you start, but how you finish.”

The Bulldogs’ next game is Wednesday at 3:30 p.m. versus Catholic Central at Windsor Stadium.