Top 10 Sports Stories of 2018 | Local Sports |

1 Gloucester football wins Division 4 North

In the current MIAA playoff format, Gloucester had not ventured past the sectional semifinals; that is until this fall, where the Fishermen captured the Division 4 North championship, the program’s first sectional title in the current playoff system.

The Fishermen didn’t just win the section, they absolutely decimated the competition by a combined score of 124-33, an average score of 43-11. The NEC Tier 2 champs, the No. 2 seed in the section, clobbered No. 7 Melrose, 51-20 in the quarters, dominated No. 6 Revere in the second half en route to a 38-7 win and buried No. 5 Wayland, 38-6 in the finals.

The Fishermen finished up the season at 9-3, and their run through Division 4 North was the highlight of the highly successful season.

2Rockport dedicates field to Mary Ryan and Dave Curley

The field behind Rockport High School was dedicated to two of the school’s most legendary and successful coaches in field hockey coach Mary Ryan and boys soccer coach Dave Curley.

The two were honored on September 29 in front of a packed crowd of supporters, where the field was named the Ryan Curley Athletic Field.

Ryan and Curley are still active coaches at Rockport High and have been coaching their teams for over three decades. Ryan won a state title with the field hockey program in 1984 while Curley won multiple Cape Ann League championships and made two trips to the state semifinals.

3 GHS cheerleaders with state and New England title

The Gloucester cheerleading squad finished first in every competition it competed in during the 2018 winter season, taking home some serious hardware.

The Fishermen won the Northeastern Conference grand championship, besting every school in the NEC and the CAL to take home the honors. It followed that up with a North Regional title and the 2018 Co-ed Small School Division State Championship.

Gloucester’s biggest win came at the New England Championships, where it took home another first place finish, and it capped off the season with a victory at a National competition in Florida this past spring.

4 Incredible field hockey season on Cape Ann

Cape Ann had two state championship caliber field hockey teams this year in Manchester Essex and Gloucester, and the teams met in one of the most well played and evenly matched games one will see, a 1-0 Hornets win in a shootout.

Gloucester turned in its second straight unbeaten NEC title, finishing up the season at 16-2-3 while reaching the tournament for the sixth straight season and the quarterfinals for the fifth straight year.

Manchester Essex, on the other hand, won the CAL Baker for the fourth straight year, running its unbeaten streak in the league up to 70 straight games. The Hornets finished at 16-1-5, playing in the sectional finals for the 10th time in 12 seasons.

5 Gloucester softball wins the NEC

The Gloucester softball team had a banner year this past spring, literally. The Fishermen were able to hang their first Northeastern Conference championship banner since 2002, winning the NEC South Division with a 13-2 record in conference.

Gloucester, which finished the season at 17-3 after reaching the sectional semifinals and was powered by a 12-game win streak in the middle of the season, tied for the best record in the 16-team conference with Peabody and Marblehead.

6 Mondello breaks GHS wins record

Senior left hander John John Mondello was a true ace on the mound for the Fishermen this past spring.

Mondello set the program’s single-season wins record on the mound in 2018 with nine of Gloucester’s 15 wins on the year. The 2018 Gloucester Daily Times Athlete of the Year for Gloucester finished with an ERA of 1.00 and a record of 9-1, his lone loss coming in a 1-0 game where Gloucester was no-hit. He broke the record with a dominant performance against Triton in the Division 3 North First Round.

7 Tony Zerilli steps down as GHS football coach

Gloucester will have a new head football coach in 2019 as Tony Zerilli stepped down after eight seasons on the job from 2011-18.

Zerilli compiled a career record of 51-38, his milestone 50th win being his biggest win, a 38-6 shellacking of Wayland in the Division 4 North Finals.

Zerilli took control of a rebuilding program in 2011 and returned it to prominence from 2013-18, winning at least a share of five NEC titles and being named conference Coach of the Year three times.

8 Schrock scores 1,000

Gloucester guard Whitney Schrock became the 11th player to score 1,000 points in a Gloucester uniform and the sixth girl to reach the milestone.

Schrock scored point 1,000 on a fast break layup on February 2 against Malden at the Smith Field House in Gloucester. Schrock split her high school career between Rockport, where she played for three seasons from eighth grade to her sophomore year, and Gloucester, where she finished off her high school career as a junior and senior. She finished her career with 1,088 points.

9 Salah, Wood rewrite scoring records

The Gloucester field hockey team was one of the state’s top scoring teams in 2018, and as a result, two players were able to surpass the program’s previous single-season goal scoring record.

Sophomore Mia Salah currently has the record as she scored 24-goals on the season to lead the Fishermen. Senior captain Tracy Wood also broke the previous record of 21-goals, scoring 23 on the season.

Both players were first team All Northeastern Conference selections.

10 Manchester Essex girls soccer wins the CAL

The Manchester Essex girls soccer team will be able to hang the program’s first ever banner in the school’s gymnasium by winning the Cape Ann League for the first time in program history.

The Hornets, who reached the sectional finals for just the second time in program history this fall, sported a record of 11-3-2 in the CAL (15-4-2 overall) and clinched the crown with a win over Hamilton-Wenham on the final day of the regular season.

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