Athletes of the Week: Oriola and McNamara

There are some folks who muse that the St. John Paul II baseball team’s schedule detracts from the legitimacy of the one thing it continues to do and do well: win.

Joe Oriola - St. John Paul II Athlete of the Week

Joe Oriola – St. John Paul II Athlete of the Week

And if you’re one of those folks, then grab a bat and step in the batter’s box against the Lions’ ace righty, Joe Oriola because he’s got three solid answers to any and all Lions’ baseball detractors: strike one, strike two and strike three.

On Friday, May 2, Oriola went the distance against the Barnstable High Red Raiders and he struck out seven while allowing just five hits as his teammates plated 19 unanswered runs. Six days later, Oriola stepped his game up a notch, striking out 14 Cape Cod Academy Seahawks while allowing just one hit and walking none.

This District 10 American Legion All-District Team hurler (Sandwich Post 188) has proved once and for all that the defending MIAA Division 4 State Champions are the real deal. With Oriola’s arm on the mound, the 10-0 Lions are well on their way toward making another run at it come the postseason and for his efforts he is unequivocally one of this week’s Athletes of the Week.

The 9-3 Dennis-Yarmouth Dolphins boys’ lacrosse team has displayed this season the sort of chemistry and unity that champions are made of and if they’ve showed little else, than they’ve showed that defense is, without question, the key to most athletic success stories.

Case and point: goaltender Sean McNamara.

In last Friday afternoon’s Atlantic Coast League lacrosse tilt on Station Avenue, McNamara put on a display of skill we’re not sure we’ve seen the likes of anywhere else this spring. Pelted

Sean McNamara - Dennis-Yarmouth Athlete of the Week

Sean McNamara – Dennis-Yarmouth Athlete of the Week

with shot upon shot in the game’s waning minutes – many at point-blank range – McNamara was, quite literally, impenetrable. He made not one save less than 11 in the latter half of the fourth quarter with Falmouth breathing hard down his neck, and with the score at just 6-5. He held his ground and when the dust settled on this thrilling match-up, by our count, he had made 25 saves in all: that’s the stuff better reserved for collegiate lax, some might argue.

In any case, for his effort, the Dolphins’ netminder is one of this week’s Athletes of the Week.

─ Athlete of the Week is selected and written by sports editor Sean Walsh. If you’d like to nominate a local athlete for Athlete of the Week, email [email protected].

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