Rockets Review: Girls Volleyball Team Makes Top 15

Swimmers, soccer and more brought home victories last week.

By Micah Hauben, NHS Director of Athletics

Needham High School girls volleyball started the week off with a non-league victory over Newton South and used the momentum to earn key league wins over Framingham and Natick (in 5 sets!).  

The girls now stand at 4-2 and have been ranked in the top-15 by the Boston Globe for the first time.

The only match of the week will be on Thursday, Sept. 20 as the Rockets welcome in BSC Carey Division rival Weymouth.

Girls Swimming and Diving

Taking to the pool for the first time, the girls swimming and diving team also earned strong Bay State Conference wins, coasting to victories over Weymouth and Dedham.  

Their only meet of the week will be on Thursday, Sept. 20 at Braintree.  

Cross Country

Boys and girls cross country also opened up their seasons with a tri-meet hosted by Dedham with Braintree. The boys swept the finishes of both races, while the girls brought home four of the scoring spots in each race.  

Both teams will be back in action on Wednesday, Sept. 19 in a tri-meet at Houghton's Pond with Milton and Weymouth.


Girls soccer remained undefeated on the season, beating Framingham and Natick, and will take on two Carey Division opponents at home this week on Wednesday, Sept. 19 against Weymouth and Friday, Sept. 21 against Braintree.

Boys soccer played their first night game of the season on Tuesday, Sept. 11 vs. Framingham, needing two second-half goals to fight back for a 2-2 tie.  

On Thursday, Sept. 13, the boys hosted Natick, and although they put three early goals up on the board, the team saw Natick come all the way back to tie it up at 3-3 in the second half. The boys had one more push in them and got the late game-winner off a throw-in with less than three minutes to go. 

Going opposite the girls, the boys will be on the road against Weymouth and Braintree this week.  


The golf team lost for the first time this season to a strong Wellesley team but will be back in action three times this week, hosting Brookline on Tuesday, Sept. 18, traveling to play Newton North on Wednesday, Sept. 19, and finishing off the week on Thursday, Sept. 20 at home against Framingham.


On Friday night, Sept. 14, the 1-0 Needham football team traveled to Mansfield to take on the Hornets in a non-league clash of top-15 teams. The squads did not disappoint, as they put on quite a show for an early season game.  

After Mansfield got on the board first, the Rockets used a long second-quarter drive, and a 1-yard touchdown on fourth down from Mikey Panepinto, to get on the board for a 7-7 halftime score. Needham and Panepinto pushed it over the goalline again in the third quarter to go up 14-7, only to see Mansfield intercept a long pass from quarterback Ryan Charter, and then go 60 yards on the next play to tie the game at 14.

The Rockets got a huge defensive stop when Tim McCarthy stripped the ball from the Mansfield quarterback and Mike Manigault came up with the fumble recovery. On the ensuing drive, Mikey Panepinto got into the endzone again (his third touchdown of the game), to give them the 21-14 lead.

Needing, and getting, one more stop, the Rockets' defense came up big, and the team celebrated on the field and all the way to the bus for one of the biggest regular season wins in program history.  

Read Patch's live coverage of the game here.

The team will be back in action on Friday night, Sept. 21 at home on Memorial Field at 7 p.m. vs. Braintree.

Along with the game, the 2011-12 State Champion NHS Dance Team will be honored at half-time, while Boston sports radio station WEEI will have their event tent out at the game, and the second 5th Quarter event of the year will be held in the cafeteria following the game for all Needham high school students.

Check http://nhs.needham.k12.ma.us/athletics for full team schedules.

Rockets Review is a weekly update distributed by email by Needham High School Director of Athletics Micah Hauben and published with permission on Needham Patch. Additional athletics information can be found on the NHS Athletic Department Web site.


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