With 2011 slowly coming to a close, and 2012 days away, it’s time to look back on the past year of athletics. Here’s 10 moments that’ll forever be remembered from the past 12 months.
1. : This was indeed one of the crowning moments of the past year, as the Rockets varsity football team accomplished their goal of playing on the grassy, green turf at Gillette Stadium. However, the outcome wasn’t as planned, as Needham fell to Boston College High School, 21-7. Yet, a valiant effort was displayed, as the Rockets, who held the Eagles running and passing game in tact, despite allowing a 91-yard touchdown dash by Deonate Ramey-Do in the second quarter.
2. – Will Stenberg capped off his Rockets career this past spring earning his 100th point in a Blue and Gold uniform when Needed walloped Milton, 18-1. Stenberg graduated in June and is now a member of the SUNY-Albany men’s lacrosse team.
3. – Family, friends, students, teammates and coaches flooded the high school’s Athletic Department office on Thursday, November 10 to celebrate Shelby Aubin and Ally Sullivan’s letter of intentions, which will allow both student athletes to play collegiate sports. Aubin will play lacrosse for Georgetown University, while Sullivan will join the Providence College tennis team.
4. – After back-to-back losses against Wellesley and Westwood, O’Brien’s squad rebounded by scoring eight goals in a span of 25-minutes to snap their two game skid at Framingham High School in April. However, the victory against the Flyers also marked Beth O’Brien’s first win in nine seasons against Framingham, which brought a smile to her face, and the teams.
5. – The boys tennis team accomplished something they haven’t done in quite some time, as they handed the Wellesley Raiders their first regular season defeat in nine seasons.
Rockets head coach Andrew Lawrence told Needham Patch after the match concluded that he felt his team was going to win when he stated, “It’s been a strange sensation, in terms of how I felt about this match coming into it [but] I felt that these guys have been playing great, and I don’t want to sound cocky, but I kind of expected to win because I did feel like we’re better.”
6. – The Needham Rockets boys varsity lacrosse season came to a “screeching halt” against St. John’s Prep, who miraculously watched Matt Scalise score the game winner with 1:09 left in the fourth quarter. The Eagles victory terminated the Rockets chances to play for a Division I state title at Harvard University.
7. – The Rockets boy’s varsity soccer team kicked-off their season with an impressive win against Dedham High School, as well as earned the 300th Cup, which celebrated tri-centennial.
8. – For the third time in his high school coaching career, the Rockets head coach was honored by Patriots hall of famer Andre Tippet, who presented the award to Needham after their triumphant victory against Weymouth.
9. – It took Dave Duffy and the Rockets four attempts to win their first playoff game in school history, and well, Lady Luck was apparently on their side during the final week of November, as Needham pulverized New Bedford, 42-14, and punched their ticket to the Division I Eastern Massachusetts Super Bowl. After the game concluded, Duffy and his players shed a few tears of happiness.
10. – After ending their season in the first round of the MIAA Division I South bracket in 2010, the Rockets returned to the tournament, and stunned their first two opponents, Hingham and Brockton in penalty kicks before falling to Oliver Ames. However, the Rockets are expected to return a majority of their roster in the coming year, and possibly make a further run toward a state championship.