Maldonado Wins CAC Javelin Championship and Is Named CAC MVP

Maldonado Wins CAC Javelin Championship and Is Named CAC MVP

The Chelsea High boys track and field team competed in the Commonwealth Athletic Conference Meet Saturday at Greater Lowell. The Red Devils finished in fourth place among the nine teams at the meet, finishing behind Greater Lowell, Whittier and Gr. Lawrence.

“We had very close dual meets with Whittier and Gr. Lawrence and unfortunately they bested us today along with Gr. Lowell,” said CHS head coach Don Fay. “It’s been three years since we won the league title, but I feel we took some strong steps this year and made progress towards that goal.”

Leading the way for Chelsea was Ricky Maldonado, who captured the championship in the javelin with a toss of 145′-7″. Rickey also medaled in three other events, placing second in the high jump with a leap of 6′-0″ (he jumped the same height as the Lynn Tech athlete, but had one more miss); third in the 400 dash in 54.1; and anchoring the 4 x 400 quartet (with teammates Mohamed Qasim, Marcone Correra, and Alecio Dasilva) which ran 3:46 to finish third.

Maldonado’s efforts on the day, which totaled 25.5 points, earned him the CAC league MVP. “Ricky had a very good day,” said Fay. “He had a clutch throw in the javelin to win and two close results in the high jump and 400 meters which were very close to being wins.” Maldonado will be competing at Braintree High next Sunday at the State Divisional Meet in the high jump.

Mohamed Qasim finished second in the triple jump, bounding 37′-9″, and was a sold fifth in the 400 meters, running a personal best of 55.8.

Junior Jeffrey Estrada collected two third place medals, one in the 400 intermediate hurdles in 63.1 and the other in the 800 meters where he ran a personal of 2:11.

The boys 4×100 team of Mohamed Mohamed, Cris Sanyet, Josue Theosmy and Jose Aguilar had terrific handoffs and medaled with a third place performance of 48.4.

“This was not a big team this year (28 athletes), but they all played a pivotal role on this team and improved greatly during the year,” noted Fay. “As always, we had a very respectful team and most of the athletes were committed day in and day out to getting better.”

Cabral sets CHS mark in 400 and is named CAC MVP

The Chelsea High girls track and field team turned in an impressive performance at Saturday’s Commonwealth Athletic conference Meet that was held at Greater Lowell Saturday.

The Lady Red Devils finished in third place at the meet behind Whittier and Notre Dame. “We took our smallest group of competitors to the CAC Meet in recent years, but this small group of girls had an amazing day,” said CHS head coach Kim Huffer, who noted that her squad recorded 17 personal records (PR) on the day.

The highlight of the meet for Chelsea was the performance of sophomore Katherine Cabral, who set a new Chelsea High school record in the 400 dash in a time of 63.8 seconds, an effort that captured first place. Cabral also took second place in the 200 dash, third in the long jump, and third in the triple jump to score a total of 30 points at the meet. Cabral’s prodigious output at the meet and throughout the season earned her being voted the MVP Award for the league.

In addition to Cabral, Sarah Bourouis claimed a CAC championship in the 200 meter dash.

The complete list of Lady Red Devils who earned medals and added points to the CHS scoresheet for finishing in the top six in their events were:

Shot Put – 6th place – Christina Fernandez

Long Jump – 3rd Place – Katherine Cabral

Triple Jump – 3rd Place – Katherine Cabral

High Jump – 4th Place – Sarah Bourouis

400 Hurdles – 5th Place – Gabriela Ramirez

2Mile -6th Place – Wendy Becerra

100M – 2nd Place – Mariama Kamara…. 5th Place – Sarah Bourouis

Mile – 4th Place – Wendy Becerra

400M – 1st Place – Katherine Cabral…. 6th Place – Owliyo Mohamud

200M – 1st Place – Sarah Bourouis…. 2nd Place – Katherine Cabral … 3rd Place – Mariama Kamara

4×400 Relay -5th Place (Sara Beqo, Kiya Gugssa, Sylvia Owusu, Owliyo Mohamud)

At the upcoming Division 2 State Meet on Sunday in New Bedford, a number of the Lady Red Devils will be competing: Sarah Bourouis in the 200M; Mariama Kamara in the 100M; and the 4 x 100 relay quartet of Sarah Bourouis, Mariama Kamara, Joana Arevalo, and Katherine Cabral.

“The girls worked hard this season, noted Huffer. “We will be saying goodbye to six seniors who have been key members of our team, but am excited about the potential in the underclassmen as they continue to improve next season and beyond.”

Huffer named Coach of Year in the CAC

CHS girls head track coach Kim Huffer was named by her peers in the Commonwealth Athletic Conference as the Coach of the Year.

The Lady Red Devils also earned the MVP Award, which was voted to be given to sophomore Katherine Cabral.

“I am humbled and excited. It was a really great season for the girls,” said Huffer.

CHS baseball team concludes season

The Chelsea High baseball team wrapped up its 2014 season season with a 7-4 loss to the Maimonides School last Wednesday evening under the lights at the CHS ballfield.

After a scoreless initial three frames, Maimonides scored twice in the fourth and fifth innings and then added three more in the sixth to take a 7-0 lead.

However, the Red Devils refused to quit and mounted a big rally in the final frame that produced four runs and brought the tying run to the plate. Armando Montes led off with a double and promptly came home on a base hit by Carlos Vega. Carlos Ramos and Orlando Rodriguez drew walks to load the bases and a ground out by Luis Martinez rescued Vega. Base hits by Luis Rodriguez and Luis Jiminez scored two more CHS runs, but that would prove to be as close as the Red Devils would get.

“It was nice to see the team battle all the way to the last out of the last inning of the season,” said CHS head coach Alan Beausoleil.

Two Red Devils, seniors Vega and Montes, were selected to the CAC all-star team. Vega pitched a 1-2-3 inning in the all-star game Monday to help his team to a 5-4 victory.


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A Common-sense Approach to Gun Control

A Common-sense Approach to Gun Control

The gun control bill announced this week by House Speaker Robert DeLeo represents one of the most (indeed in our view, THE most) comprehensive efforts in our nation to bring about sensible gun control legislation that both improves public safety while also safeguarding the rights of law-abiding citizens to purchase guns as enunciated in the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision that extended the Second Amendment to private persons.

Speaker’s DeLeo’s bill is a long and complex piece of legislation that is befitting one of the most complex problems facing American society today. The mass shooting tragedies in our nation (the most recent of which occurred in Santa Barbara, California, this past weekend) that have become all too common clearly need to be addressed.

However, mass shootings alone, while grabbing all of the headlines, are only the tip of the iceberg when the subject of gun control is involved. While our nation rightly takes all sorts of measures to ensure our safety from international terrorism, the oft-ignored reality is that more Americans lose their lives each and every three months because of gun violence — right here in our own homes, neighborhoods, and communities — than were killed in the terrorist attacks of 9/11.

Although gun murders by hardened criminals certainly are a large part of the problem, the easy availability of legal gun ownership, including assault weapons and other high-capacity guns, has created a new type of crime — mass murder of schoolchildren, people in theaters, and shopping malls — that did not exist a generation ago.

Moreover, the laxity of the laws in many states means that those who are mentally-ill have easy access to such weapons of mass murder. The most impressive aspect of Speaker DeLeo’s bill is that it focuses to such a great extent on the issues of mental health and drug addiction, two problems that our society has ignored for far too long.

We have no doubt that those on all sides of the issue of gun control will find some reason to complain about Speaker DeLeo’s bill, either because it goes too far (the pro-gun crowd) or not far enough. But we believe that in the final analysis, Bob DeLeo’s bill will be hailed as a landmark and common-sense approach to a complex problem that not only will enhance the safety of the citizens of Massachusetts, but also will serve as a model for other states that similarly care about the safety of their citizenry.

As the ancient Romans said, “Let the safety of the people be the highest law of the land.”

For details on the Bill go to


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Key McLaughlin Figure Gets Retirement Refund

Key McLaughlin Figure Gets Retirement Refund

James McNichols could be considered by many to be former CHA Director Michael McLaughlin’s chief henchman in most of his schemes during the 10-year tenure, but McNichols turned on McLaughlin after the house of cards came tumbling down – eventually being the key witness last summer whose testimony ensured McLaughlin would get more time in prison than expected.

Now, barring any indictment for his own actions in the CHA debacle, McNichols is $55,515 richer.

The Chelsea Retirement Board last Thursday was forced to approve a retirement contribution refund to McNichols despite some inconsistencies with his application request – complications that had held up the matter since March.

“There is no statutory right to withhold his deductions,” said Retirement Board Attorney Brian Monahan. “We have to return them.”

Given his role in the situation, Board members were cautious about rewarding the refund – as it was unknown (and still is) if McNichols is under investigation.

In a question on the application, it asked if he was the target of an investigation. While his answer said information about him had been requested by investigators, he was not considered a target.

“The Retirement Board must take action and cannot withhold deductions unless there is an indictment,” said Monahan. “We can monitor the situation, but beyond that, there is nothing the Retirement Board can do.”

If McNichols were indicted in the future, his refund award could be revisited.


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Retirement Board Decision on McLaughlin Gets Hearing

Retirement Board Decision on McLaughlin Gets Hearing

Chelsea Housing Authority (CHA) officials fully expect a reversal of the Chelsea Retirement Board’s decision from last month not to confiscate former CHA Director Michael McLaughlin’s personal pension contributions.

“We’re very pleased that the state Board is going to look at the decision of the Chelsea Retirement Board,” said CHA Board Chair Tom Standish. “Our expectations are it will be given a fair hearing and will result in a reversal of the Retirement Board’s decision.”

Last month, after a careful review of the situation that lasted more than eight months, Retirement Board officials issued a decision concluding that they could not take McLaughlin’s personal pension contributions, totaling $252,000, and return it to the CHA for repairs and neglect caused by McLaughlin’s criminal acts while at the helm.

McLaughlin had accumulated the sum after 43 years of contributing. The status of his full pension – meaning the state’s matching contributions – is still up in the air at the Retirement Board.

The state retirement board – known as PERAC – reviewed the local decision earlier this month, and surprisingly took umbrage with a good many of the local Board’s conclusions.

Members of PERAC reportedly had many questions about the decision, and some of those questions were quite pointed.

That discussion and review set the stage for the calling of a full hearing on June 12 where the case will be discussed by all sides before PERAC.

“PERAC’s chair had requested additional information from us,” said Chelsea Retirement Board Chair Joe Siewko. “We’ve been invited to come back for the hearing and obviously we’ll go. Hopefully, on June 12, all the issues here will be resolved.”

The situation was discussed in depth at last Thursday’s Retirement Board meeting, mostly in executive session. All communications involving the situation were also privileged at the moment as well.

The June 12 hearing at PERAC is expected to be private as well, in an executive session.

Yesterday, May 28, the CHA also discussed the matter briefly at its monthly meeting.

McLaughlin was convicted last summer of lying about his income, and just this month pleaded guilty in Federal Court to charges of conspiracy to defraud the United States – a charge stemming from the secret rigging of federal and state housing inspections.


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Chelsea Firefighters Rescue DPW Worker Trapped in Bobcat

Chelsea Firefighters Rescue DPW Worker Trapped in Bobcat

Using a piece of brand new equipment, firefighters were able to rescue a DPW worker who became trapped in a bobcat last Thursday on Orange Street. OSHA is investigating the incident.

Using a piece of brand new equipment, firefighters were
able to rescue a DPW worker who became trapped in a bobcat
last Thursday on Orange Street. OSHA is investigating
the incident.

Firefighters rescued a DPW worker that became trapped in a piece of City construction equipment on Orange Street last Thursday, May 22, when the equipment compressed inward – crushing the man at the waist and causing him extreme pain.

Around 10:46 a.m., Engine 2 and Tower 1 were dispatched to Orange Street for the report of a DPW worker trapped inside a piece of construction equipment. Units arrived and found the worker trapped inside a piece of equipment called a Skid-Steer, which is similar to a backhoe. The front of the Skid-Steer had compressed inward, crushing the worker at his waist and lower extremities.

Firefighters evaluated the worker who was conscious and alert but in extreme pain. Crews worked to free the man using equipment such as rescue air bags and hydraulic rams, which are both designed to lift heavy objects. However, neither piece of equipment would fit in the small space necessary to free the worker.

Under the direction of Capt. Michael Masucci, the firefighters deployed a new piece of equipment recently purchased by the department called a Grip Hoist. The firefighters used a nearby dump truck as an anchor point for the hoist and secured the other end to the crushed Skid-Steer. Within minutes the worker was extricated from the vehicle and transported to the MGH in Boston.

“We were fortunate to have the new Grip Hoist on the truck,” said Capt. Masucci. “We pride ourselves on being prepared for any situation and today it paid off.”

The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is investigating the accident.


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Vega Spins No-hitter in 4-0 Win over Lynn Tech

Chelsea High senior Carlos Vega placed an exclamation point onto the approaching end of his fine career with the Red Devil baseball program by pitching a no-hitter last Friday against Lynn Tech on his home field. Carlos was immense from start to finish, fanning 13 Tech batters and allowing only one Tech base-runner, that coming via a walk on a 3-2 pitch in the sixth.

“Carlos was superb,” said CHS head coach Alan Beausoleil. “He was in command the entire game.”

Vega fittingly scored the only run he would need in the open inning when he singled with two outs and came home when junior Carlos Ramos followed with a two-run home-run high and deep into right field that cleared the netting and landed in the MDC pool.

The roundtripper was the first of two for Ramos on the day, as Carlos duplicated that feat with another pop into the pool in the sixth frame for a solo homer. Chelsea’s other run came in the second stanza when Luis Martinez reached on an error, stole second, and came home on a base hit by freshman Manny Ortiz.

The no-hitter and victory were the principal bright spots for the CHS diamondmen in a week that saw them drop four other contests. A 9-8 loss in extra-innings at Minuteman Regional proved to be the toughest to take, as the Red Devils held leads of 4-0 and 8-5, only to allow Minuteman to chip away and eventually tie the game in the bottom of the seventh.

The Red Devils scored four runs in the opening stanza. After Jorge Hernandez led off with a walk and Armando Montes reached base on a dropped third strike, Vega came through with a double that plated Hernandez. A base hit by Yvad Rosado brought in Montes and Vega and a double by Orlando Rodriguez scored Rosado.

However, Minuteman got one back in the bottom of the inning and then took the lead with four in the second.

Chelsea reasserted control of the game with another four-run outburst in the fifth, Montes once again reached on a dropped third strike and Vega singled to get the rally started. A three-bagger by Ramos gave Chelsea the lead, 6-5, and a double by Rosado made it 7-5. After Yvad stole third, a ground-out by Orlando Rodriguez scored Rosado for an 8-5 Chelsea advantage.

However, Minuteman got two back in the sixth and then tied the game in the seventh before winning it in the eighth.

In an 11-0 loss to North Shore Tech last Wednesday, Vega, Rosado, and Ortiz accounted for the three Red Devil base hits. In a 10-1 defeat to Whittier Tech last Thursday, Chelsea hit the ball well, but could only produce one run. Montes went 2-for-4 with a double and a run scored; Vega was 2-for-3 with a double and an RBI; Jorge Hernandez was 2-for-3 with a stolen base; and Luis Martinez was 1-for-3 with a stolen base. In a 12-1 loss to Greater Lowell Tuesday, Jorge Hernandez had a hit and an RBI; Vega had a hit and a stolen base; Luis Rodriguez had a hit; and Carlos Ramos had a hit and was hit by a pitch.

Beausoleil and his Red Devils, who now stand at 3-12 on the season, will play at Greater Lawrence today (Thursday); trek to Northeast Regional Tuesday; and then conclude their 2014 campaign next Wednesday when they host Maimonides under the lights at 7:15.

CHS trackmen edge Greater Lawrence, 73-63

The Chelsea High boys outdoor track team won its fifth meet of the season (against just one loss) with a 73-63 triumph over Greater Lawrence last week.

“We probably had our best meet of the year,” said CHS head coach Don Fay, whose Red Devils clinched second-place in the Commonwealth Athletic Conference with the win “Everybody was healthy and ran well.”

Chelsea got off to a quick start, going 1-2 in the 400 high hurdles, receiving personal records (PR) from Jeffrey Estrada in a clocking of 63.2 and Eric Flores in 67.0.

In the 100 high hurdles, Haider Kareem finished first and Flores took third.

The CHS 4 x 100 relay quartet of Mohamed Qasim, Mohamed Mohamed, Jose Aguilar and Chris Sanyet defeated their Gr. Lawrence counterparts.

Adriel Rodrigues was a double-winner for Chelsea, finishing first in the discus with a toss of 108′-10″ and first in the shotput with a throw of 41′-11″. The versatile Rodriguez also finished second in the 200 dash in 24.2 and third in the 100 dash in 11.9 to accumulate 14 points for the Chelsea side of the scoresheet.

Ricardo Maldonado also added some big points to the CHS cause, as he has done all season. Ricardo took first in the javelin with a chuck of 124′-2″; second in the high jump with a leap of 5-’6″; second in the 100 dash in 11.75; and second in the 400 dash in 54.0 for a total of 14 points.

Flores captured his first win of the year in the high jump, clearing the bar at 5′-7″.

Estrada won the triple jump at 35-’6″, with teammates Chris Sanyet second at 35-’4″ and Qasim third at 35′-4″.

Christian Calix threw the javelin 110′ to grab second place in that event and Francisco Mercedes finished third with a toss of 98′-11″ to complete a CHS sweep in the javelin.

Eric Orellana picked up a third place in the two-mile run and Jeffrey Estrada ran a PR to finish third in the mile. Alecia Dasilva finished third in the 400 dash in 58.3 and Brian Horn did likewise in the 800 in a time of 2:28.

Sanyet ran a personal best in the 200 dash to grab third in 24.6 and Dominic Vega threw a PR of 85-’5″ in the discus. Also picking up valuable third place points for Chelsea were Mercedes with a throw of 32′-10″ in the shotput and Sanyet in the long jump with his leap of 17′-10″.

“The throwers and sprinters had a great day,” said Fay. “Coach Martineau and coach Arrenson have done very well with our sprinters and throwers this year. We knew Greater Lawrence had a really good 4 x 400 team, so we knew we had to clinch the meet before the relay, which we did.

“This was basically to clinch second-place in the league,” added the coach. “Although this was not our ultimate goal, after the past two seasons of being at .500, it is a step in the right direction.”

The Red Devils will end their regular season with a meet with PMA and Northeast. There also will be the CAC freshman/sophomore meet. May 24 is the date set for the CAC All-League Meet at Greater Lowell.


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Congratulations, Judge Amy Nechtem

We join with our community and the distinguished members of the legal profession in congratulating Judge Amy Nechtem of the Essex County Juvenile Court in Lynn on her appointment as the Chief Justice of the Juvenile Court for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

We concur wholeheartedly with Trial Court Chief Justice Paula M. Carey who said that Judge Nechtem’s “judicial and leadership experience will advance juvenile justice and child welfare” in our state. Judge Nechtem is an outstanding choice for this esteemed position of leadership in the Juvenile Court Department.

Chelsea is the city where Judge Nechtem grew up and began her education. We remember Amy as an excellent student and a member of the Chelsea High School varsity cheerleading squad prior to her admission to Simmons College, her subsequent matriculation and graduation from Suffolk University Law School, and her service in the Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office.

We remember fondly Amy’s parents, Saul and Gladys Nechtem. Saul Nechtem was a tremendous high school athlete and went on to achieve further greatness at Boston University where he is an inductee in the school’s Athletic Hall of Fame.

We commend Judge Nechtem for her mentorship to students through the Girls Inc. organization and her stellar contribution to the annual Law Day program in Lynn.

We thank Judge Nechtem for her exemplary service at the Essex County Juvenile Court and wish her the best as she begins her new position as Chief Justice of the Juvenile Court.


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Johnny Depp Filming in Chelsea

Movie crews have once again descended upon Chelsea to begin shooting scenes from ‘Black Mass,’ an upcoming movie about the early days of ‘Whitey’ Bulger’s activities in Boston and surrounding areas.

Trucks arrived and signs were placed on Chestnut and Williams Streets this week, near Fernandez Liquors store. Likely, the crews are looking to film under the Mystic/Tobin Bridge, which is an ever-popular shot for movie makers. Last summer, movie crews filmed for several weeks under the Tobin for fight scenes and in the Chelsea Floor Covering store – which was turned into a coffee shop temporarily. The main character in that movie – which was based on the 1980s television series ‘The Equalizer’ – was Denzel Washington, who made several appearances in Chelsea during filming.

There was no word on how long and where movie crews would be for ‘Black Mass.’

However, the filming was also said to be taking place on Revere Beach as well as Chelsea.

The movie features Johnny Depp as Whitey and Guy Pearce as former Sen. President Billy Bulger.

If things work out as well as they did last year, there might be some pretty major Hollywood stars in Chelsea again this summer.


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