Lenox's Patella, Mount Greylock's Messina Recognized

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Sometimes, high school sports stars get a jump on their high school careers.
Three years ago, then-eighth-grader Cal Messina was on the bench when the Mount Greylock baseball team went to a state championship game.
This fall, Lenox eighth-grader Sophie Patella is a big reason why the Lenox girls soccer team is in position to make a run at the Western Mass Division 4 tournament.
Messina, now a junior star on the Mounties’ football team, and Patella are this week’s iBerkshires.com/Bedard Bros. Athletes of the Week.
Patella had some big shoes to fill when she stepped between the pipes for the Millionaires. Last year, their goal was tended by one of the best athletes in the county, Shannon Meisberger, who is a recruited Division I collegiate track and field competitor.
Patella has backstopped Lenox to a 5-5-3 record with four games left to play. She has allowed just 11 goals on 142 shots, a .923 save percentage.
In her last four games, she has allowed just two goals, including a pair of shutouts this week: a 4-0 win over Mount Everett and a 0-0 tie against a Monument Mountain program that went to the Western Mass D3 semi-finals a year ago.
Messina and the Mounties have won five straight and started last week second in the power rankings that determine the four teams who make the Western Mass Division 8 playoffs.
Friday’s Homecoming win only helped, and Messina’s 286 yards and four TDs were the biggest individual performance of the week.
“I work out, often, like every day, and it’s just something I really like to do,” Messina said after running roughshod over Ludlow in a 54-26 win. “A lot of people say the grind is tough, and once you get through it you get to play the game. But I like the grind just as much as the game.
“I’m always on the field running. I’m doing routes. I’m doing all the things I can do to make myself the best I can be so I can help my team out.”
The iBerkshires.com Athlete of the Week is sponsored by Bedard Bros. Auto of Cheshire.
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