Welcome to the New Haven Register high school sports blog where our talented staff of Chris Hunn, Joe Morelli, Dan Nowak and Mike Pucci will keep you up to date on everything to do with high school sports in Connecticut.
Mike Pucci's Gridiron Glory blog for high school football remains.
We hope you enjoy and feel free to join in the conversation.
Wednesday, December 30, 2009
Stratford wins own tournament
Brandon Sherrod scored 29 points and had 16 rebounds for the host Stratford boys’ basketball team in a 77-50 victory over East Lyme in the championship game of the Stratford tournament. Sherrod was named the tournament’s MVP. Russell Payton scored eight points and had seven rebounds and six assists and Bernard Brantley had seven points and five steals for No. 6 Stratford (4-0). Payton and Jason Charles were also named to the all-tournament team.
In other boys' action, New Fairfield 56, Foran 50 (OT): Nick Willey scored 12 points but the Lions lost this non-conference game at Milford. Dan McAllister added 10 points for Foran (0-4).
Hartford Public 51, Valley Regional 42: Tayler Rioux scored a game-high 15 points but the Warriors lost a non-conference contest at Deep River. Mitchell King added 10 points for Valley Regional (3-2).
GIRLS' BASKETBALL Hand 48, Morgan 33: Kelsey Cuddy scored 16 points, grabbed four rebounds and made four steals to lead the Tigers to a victory in the consolation game of the Hand Holiday Tournament in Madison. Kara McHugh scored 15 points and Ali Birnbaum collected 10 rebounds for Hand (2-4). Melissa Bastian scored 10 points for the Huskies (3-4).
Cheshire 58, Rockville 32: Julia Strobel scored 17 points for the Rams in the consolation game of the Southington tournament. Strobel was named to the all-tournament team. Laura DeBisschop added 12 points and Lauren Hague scored 11 points for Cheshire (1-5).
ABOVE: Former Hand girls lacrosse coach Pat McCahill is selected for Conn. Lacrosse Hall of Fame class of 2010.
The Connecticut Lacrosse Hall of Fame class of 2010 will be inducted at a reception and dinner ceremony from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. on Sunday evening, January 10, 2010, in The Commons at Woolsey Hall, Yale University, 500 College St, New Haven, Connecticut. Established in 2001, the Connecticut Lacrosse Hall of Fame is a component of the Connecticut Lacrosse Foundation. The 2010 induction class consists of former Hand girls coach Pat McCahill, Rick McCarthy, Bob McHenry, Lee Pinney, Mike Pressler, Bonnie Rosen, and Dee Stephan. The 2010 Connecticut Lacrosse Hall of Fame Induction dinner will be the culminating event of the Connecticut Lacrosse Foundation’s annual daylong Connecticut Coaches Convention and Clinic, also held at Yale.
The Connecticut Lacrosse Hall of Fame was established to honor men and women, past and present, who by their deeds as players, coaches, officials, or administrators have contributed to the growth of lacrosse in Connecticut, and who by the example of their lives, personify the great contribution of lacrosse to our way of life. Tickets for the January 10 Induction Dinner at Yale are $60.00; tables of ten are available for $500.00.
For more information or to purchase tickets online, visit www.ctlacrosse.org. Contact Rob Hoynes at firstname.lastname@example.org with any other questions. The Connecticut Lacrosse Foundation is the Connecticut chapter of US Lacrosse, the national governing body for men’s and women’s lacrosse. US Lacrosse has more than 300,000 members in 62 regional chapters around the country. Through responsive and effective leadership, US Lacrosse and its Connecticut chapter strive to provide programs and services to inspire participation while protecting the integrity of the game. Both the Connecticut Lacrosse Foundation and US Lacrosse, are 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporations. To learn more about US Lacrosse, please visit www.uslacrosse.org; to learn more about the Connecticut Lacrosse Foundation, visit www.ctlacrosse.org.
There are eight area hockey games on the schedule for Tuesday. Seven of them are out of state. The majority are in the Maine Invitational. Fairfield Prep plays at the Mount St. Charles tournament in Rhode Island.
As for the lone in state game with an area team: East Haven plays at Ridgefield, which for some people feels like out of state.
Ray Pendagast scored 27 points and grabbed 15 rebounds to lead the Shelton boys’ basketball team to a 75-69 victory over Bunnell at the Masuk holiday tournament Saturday at Monroe. Chris Esposito added 11 points and 16 rebounds and Matt Kondor added 11 points for the Gaels (3-2).
In other boys' action,
North Branford 64, East Hampton 45: Vince Stellato scored 13 points and had five rebounds and five steals to lead the visiting Thunderbirds to a Shoreline Conference win at East Hampton. John Lasko scored 22 points and Ricky Angiollo added 10 points and 14 assists for North Branford (3-1).
Girls’ basketball Ansonia 48, Sacred Heart 46: Kristin Mooney scored 19 points, grabbed 14 rebounds and had two steals to lead the visiting Chargers to a Naugatuck Valley League win at Waterbury. Rebecca Beherendt had seven points and five rebounds and Melissa Tirella scored seven points and had three assists for Ansonia (4-2).
BOYS' HOCKEY: GET OUT AND GO - BATTLE FOR FREEMAN CENTER BRAGGING RIGHTS
ABOVE: WESLEYAN UNIVERSITY'S FREEMAN ATHLETIC CENTER
It’s Division I vs. Division II with Freeman Athletic Center bragging rights on the line as SCC Division I Xavier and SCC Division II Cheshire, two teams that call the ice rink at Wesleyan University’s Freeman Athletic Center home, face off at 6 p.m. tonight (Dec. 23). This should be one of those rare exciting games you’ll see between a D-I and D-II school. Cheshire is the defending CIAC Division II champion and has one of the top players players in the state on the front line with forward Mike Devine. He scored 25 goals last season. The Rams also have a double-digit goal scorer with forward Mike Diglio who had 10 goals last season. The defense is led by backliners Colby Olin, John Cunningham, brother Drew Cunningham and James Keegan. The Falcons have one of their deepest teams and are expected to pull off some surprises this season. While the Rams have state standout Devine, the Falcons have their own standout with 6-1, 185-pound junior defenseman Jack Even. He is being recruited by New England prep schools and has been scouted by the United States Hockey League. Both teams will be tested in this spot and it could set the stage for long-term momentum for the winner.
Mary Hyde poured in 21 points to lead the Derby girls’ basketball team to a 50-41 overtime win over Wolcott Tuesday in Naugatuck Valley League action at Wolcott. Marisa Conte added nine points and Taylor McMahon chipped in with six points for Derby (3-2). The Eagles fall to 1-4.
Ansonia 56, Crosby 31: Kristen Mooney had 14 points, 10 rebounds, two assists and two steals to lead the host Chargers to a Naugatuck Valley League win. Rebecca Beherendt scored 14 points and Jeanne Whalen had four assists and three steals for Ansonia (3-2).
In boys' hoops action, Coginchaug 53, Morgan 39: Erikson Wasyl scored 26 points and pulled down six rebounds to lift Coginchaug over the Huskies in Shoreline Conference play at Durham. Jeff Tiedemann added 15 points and eight rebounds for Coginchaug (2-0). Andrew Thompson had 16 points to lead Morgan (1-1).
So far, my preseason high school boys' hockey prediction is looking good. I wrote a feature stating West Haven was a wildcard this season in the quest for the CIAC Division I championship. Sure, it's only two games, but the Blue Devils opened the season against two of the top teams in the Faifield County Interscholastic Athletic Conference and have a 2-0 record. West Haven defeated Greenwich 3-2 and defeated Darien and solid FCIAC goalie Will Love 8-1. The Westies' own wildcard is new full-time starting goalie James Withington who has great size at 6-3, 175 pounds. They have a solid front line of Ryan Bruneau, John Ascenzia and Tim Baylis and five solid defensemen. All Westies coach Joe Morrell asks of us his players is to play hard and put the puck in the net and they have certainly responded. West Haven gets its first Southern Connecticut Conference test against a very deep and talented North Haven team on Wednesday (Dec. 23) at the Bennett Rink (West Haven) at 6:30 p.m. They follow that game with a trip to Maine in the Maine Invitational Tournament. West Haven plays South Portland, Me. at Portland Ice Arena on Monday at 8 p.m. and against York, Me. at Biddeford Ice Arena (Biddeford, Me.) on Tuesday at 4 p.m.
Small world. When I went to Northeastern University in Boston to study journalism I dated a girl from Biddeford, Me.
I don't know what happened to Wilbur Cross in it season opener against Lyman Hall, but if they played like they did Monday against Hillhouse, they would not have lost.
Cross outrebounded Hillhouse, not something you see happen to the Academics too often. Gerald McClease looks to be emerging into the go-to player for the Govs and he has help with Maurice Morrison, and Ed Murray. The Govs will be a factor in the SCC Oronoque Division.
As for the Academics, their defense was very good in the second half, led by Spencer Smith and Tavon Allen. Point guard Freddie Wilson wasn't at his best, although almost every player would love to have 23 points an off-night. If Hillhouse has the lead in the fourth quarter, it's going to be very difficult to beat them when Wilson has the ball.
In other games, both Cheshire and Notre Dame came from behind to post wins over West Haven and Lyman Hall, respectively.
Tonight's local action is a little dull, so if you are interested in traveling, Bridgeport Central hosts Trinity Catholic tonight. Both teams are undefeated.
On Wednesday, Wilbur Cross hosts Xavier, Notre Dame hosts Career and Lyman Hall hosts Hand.
Hillhouse suffered its first loss of the season Monday, falling to Career 58-46.
Would the game be different if Academics injured point guard Andreana Thomas played?
Career played well and has tons of weapons, certainly making the Panthers a Class LL contender despite their current 2-2 mark.
But the Panthers sagged off Hillhouse defensively, forcing it to shoot. With Thomas' solid jumper, that plan wouldn't have been as successful. Also, Hillhouse's top scorer Bria Holmes did not have the ball in her hands enough. If Thomas played, that would have been a different story and Holmes likely would have finished with more than 15 points.
Bottom line is Hillhouse needs Thomas back. She is expected to return from her knee injury in January. Hopefully in time for the Academics' Jan. 16 matchup with Norwich Free Academy. That could be the state's best regular-season matchup of the year.
Shaniqua Fuller did it all for Wilbur Cross, scoring 21 points to go with 16 rebounds, seven steals, four assists and two blocks. The Governors coasted to a 60-25 win over Hand. Aaliyah Robinson added 18 points, nine rebounds, four steals and two blocks.
Jen Ruys had 12 points and nine rebounds as Lyman Hall edged Hamden 47-42. Sophie St. Hilaire had a game-high 17 points for the Trojans.
Courtney Schissler had 29 points and grabbed 17 rebounds for Branford, as the Hornets handed Guilford its first loss of the season in a 63-34 win.
Coginchaug moves to 5-0 with a 64-54 win over East Hampton, Lauren Esposito had 20 points to lead four players, who scored in double figures for Coginchaug. Kelsey Booth had 26 points for East Hampton.
Bre Butler had 20 points in Sheehan's 51-34 win over Sacred Heart Academy.
Alyssa Long-Jeffrey scored 18 points in a losing effort as O'Brien Tech fell 75-43 to Crosby.
Foran jumped out to a 35-15 first-half lead and the Lions coasted from there, beating North Haven 56-33. Alyssa Healy led the Lions with 15 points.
Law cruised to a 48-30 win over East Haven. Kim Legen had a game-high 12 points for the Eagles.
Mercy continues to roll. The Tigers beat Cheshire 65-30. Amber Bepko scored 16 points for Mercy. The Tigers outscored the Rams 24-3 in the first quarter.
Jackie Morressey poured in a game-high 20 points to lift Oxford to a 61-51 win over Wilcox Tech.
Sayra Johnson finished with 12 points as West Haven edged Shelton 27-26.
Dan Menke scored 11 of his 32 points in overtime to lift the Cheshire boys’ basketball team to a 72-69 victory over host West Haven Monday in a Southern Connecticut Conference interdivision game. Nate Howard scored 20 points, including two free throws to send the game into overtime, for the Rams (1-2). Aaron Vining scored 23 points and Gary Williams 20 points for the Westies (0-3).
In other games, Notre Dame-West Haven 54, Lyman Hall 49: Tom Doyle scored 18 points to lead the Green Knights to an SCC interdivision win at West Haven. Quenten Howard added 15 points for Notre Dame (2-1). Joe DeSandre scored a team-high 12 points for the Trojans (1-2). Branford 61, Foran 53: Pedro Boskovic scored 18 points to lift the visiting Hornets to an SCC interdivision win at Milford. Tanner Tamsin added 13 points for Branford (2-0). Mike Masciola scored 16 points for the Lions (0-2). East Haven 67, Guilford 66 (OT): Greg Mills scored 22 points to lead the Easties to their SCC interdivision win at Guilford. Jim Gagliardi scored 15 points and Alan D’Auria 11 for East Haven (1-2). Eric Hedberg scored 23 points for the Indians (0-3).
Bria Moore scored a game-high 18 points as Career followed a 1-2 start with a big win over Hillhouse. The Panthers beat the Academics, the No. 1 team in the Register Top 10 poll, 58-46 tonight at the New Haven Athletic Center. Listen to Moore talk about the victory, Career's depth and a tough upcoming stretch for the Panthers.
AMITY ALUMNI BOYS' HOCKEY GAME TO BENEFIT KRAKOWSKI FAMILY
The Amity boys’ hockey team will be sponsoring an alumni game in honor of Ashlie Krakowski and family on Saturday (Dec. 19) at 5:45 p.m. at the Bennett Rink in West Haven. Krakowski, a former Amity High girls' hockey player, recently lost her life in a tragic car accident. The player donation is $20. For more information, contact Amity boys’ hockey coach Gary Lindgren at 203-397-4830.
Hamden beat Wilbur Cross 56-39 Thursday night, for the Green Dragons' first win over the Governors in three years. Cara Deroy, who talks about Thursday's win, led Hamden with 22 points. The Green Dragons outscored the Governors 18-6 in the final quarter.
Two scores were unreported from the SCC Wednesday night: Lyman Hall won at Wilbur Cross 62-59 and Pomperaug beat Amity 55-29.
Five teams in the preseason top 10 lost: No. 3 Windsor (to Bloomfield 87-75), No. 4 Bulkeley (to No. 5 New Britain 54-53), No. 6 St. Joseph (at Trinity Catholic 67-66 on a 50-foot buzzer-beater), No. 8 New London (to Stratford, which is a top-10 team despite not being ranked there, 68-57 at New London) and No. 10 Notre Dame (to Sheehan 57-48 at home).
Sheehan will still miss the likes of Matt Pascuzzo and John Papale but still have Phil Gaetano and Brett Biestek and will be very competitive. The Titans get to play the top-ranked Academics next week, who just buried West Haven. Notre Dame is better than it showed and should be better come January. But the Green Knights have got to be beter with the basketball than they showed.
Bulkeley was without its best player DeShawn Hamlet for what we assume are academic reasons. Bloomfield is a legitimate top-10 team as well, so them beating Windsor is not really a surprise. Neither is Stratford beating New London, still the best team in the ECC with East Lyme, a winner over Hand Wednesday, maybe second best in that league.
I shouldn't be surprised about Trinity beating St. Joseph. Een though they graduated plenty, the Crusaders are tough to beat at home and, truth be told, I can't remember Joseph being this high in the poll since I've been covering boys basketball (2002-03). The Cadets still have plenty to prove, mainly to themselves, whether they are one of the state's best teams.
The next poll should have some surprises when it comes out again on Dec. 29.
Clare Kane netted 18 of her 20 points in the second half of Sacred Heart Academy’s 56-49 win over Lyman Hall. Jen Ruys had 22 points for the Trojans. Lyman Hall’s loss follows an upset win over Career, the No. 3 team in the Register Top 10 poll.
Cara Deroy finished with 14 points, five steals and five assists to lead Hamden over Law 59-49. Casey Dulin and Kim Legen led Law with 14.
Courtney Schissler had 17 points and eight rebounds in Branford’s 56-35 win over Amity. The Hornets jumped out to a 26-4 lead to open the game.
Annie Raucci scored a game-high 19 points in Foran’s 45-37 win over East Haven. Nicole Acerra led the Easties with 14 points.
Audrey Biesak poured in 18 points to lead Coginchaug to a 53-47 win over Morgan. Melissa Bastian and Amanda Cullen each scored 16 points in a losing effort.
Christina Cretella poured in a game-high 19 points, but Seymour fell 47-43 to Wilby.
Tarra Ricci scored a career-high 25 points to go with nine steals and seven assists to lift North Branford to a 49-40 win over Haddam-Killingworth.
Led by Bria Moore’s 13 points, a balanced attack from Career led the Panthers to a 62-35 win over West Haven.
Kelly Ann Rooney finished with 21 points to lift Guilford to a 67-40 win over Cheshire.
Amber Bepko had 22 points and Sadie Edwards chipped in with 14 points as Mercy beat Hand 69-32.
Bre Butler finished with 14 points and seven rebounds in Sheehan’s 49-39 win over Sports and Medical Sciences Academy.
Derby joined the NVL this year and senior guard Mary Hyde is making a strong early impression on her new conference foes. Hyde had a career-high 30 points, eight rebounds, eight steals and two assists in a 36-35 overtime win over Seymour Thursday. She followed up with 16 points, 14 rebounds, five assists, four steals and three blocks in a 49-45 loss to Watertown Friday night.
Hamden's Will Hindinger, Sheehan's T.K. Kiernan and Notre Dame-West Haven's T.J. Shea each signed to play baseball at Southern Connecticut State for the 2010-11 season.
Kyle Cummings, who now plays at UCONN-Avery Point and starred at Hamden, will also join the Owls.
Hinger, an outfielder, is a two-time SCC All-Quinnipiac Division selection. Kiernan, an infielder, holds a .325 career batting average. Shea, a catcher, will play for his father, Owls head coach Tim Shea.
RHAM pitcher Tyler Repoli and New London pitcher A.J. Turnier also signed to play at Southern.
Katy Hoyt sank a game-winning 3-pointer in overtime to lift West Haven over Amity 38-36. Jennifer Post had 11 points and 17 rebounds for Amity.
Kristen Mooney filled up the stat sheet with 26 points, 14 rebounds, four assists, two steals and two blocks as Pat Lynch picked up his first win as coach of Ansonia. The Chargers beat Watertown 51-40.
Mary Hyde netted a game-high 30 points to lift Derby to a 36-35 overtime win over Seymour. Christina Cretella had 19 points for the Wildcats.
A balanced scoring attack led Mercy to a 50-27 win over Shelton.
Lindsay Karle, Jen Ruys and Sophie St. Hilare scored all 47 Lyman Hall points, as the Trojans beat Foran 47-39. Annie Raucci had a game-high 20 points for the Lions.
And in the dud of the night, Coginchaug beat North Branford 25-18.
All games being played start at 7 p.m. unless noted
GIRLS' BASKETBALL CSC O'Brien Tech at Abbott Tech, ppd. to Monday, 4 p.m. Shoreline Old Saybrook at Hyde (Truman School), 6:30 p.m. Portland at Old Lyme, ppd. to Jan. 5, 7 p.m. East Hampton at Morgan, ppd. to Thursday, 7 p.m. Westbrook at Cromwell, ppd. to Dec. 17, 6 p.m. Non-league Haddam-Killingworth at St. Bernard, ppd. to Jan. 16, 7 p.m. Wilbur Cross at Fitch Stratford at Platt Tech Coginchaug at North Branford, ppd. to Thursday, 7:30 p.m. CCC Fermi at Platt, ppd. to Thursday, 7 p.m. SCC interdivision Sacred Heart Academy at North Haven, ppd. to Monday, 5:15 p.m. West Haven at Amity, ppd. to Thursday, 7 p.m. Foran at Lyman Hall, ppd. to Thursday, 7 p.m. Hamden at Sheehan, ppd., TBA Mercy at Shelton, ppd. to Thursday, 7 p.m. Law at Guilford NVL Torrington at Naugatuck, ppd. to Thursday, 7 p.m. Woodland at Wilby, ppd. to Thursday, 7 p.m. Seymour at Derby, ppd. to Thursday, 7 p.m. FCIAC Greenwich at St. Joseph
Hillhouse was voted the No. 1 team in the state in the Register Preseason Top 10 Poll.
The Academics won the Class L title last year. They received 13 of the 16 first-place votes. 2. Norwich Free Academy (received three first-place votes) 3. Career 4. Berlin 5. Northwest Catholic 6. Pomperaug 7. Bacon Academy 8. Wethersfield 9. Branford 10. Fairfield Warde
Led by St. John's-bound guard Keylantra Langley, the Lauralton Hall girls' basketball team will host New York City powerhouse Christ the King in a scrimmage Friday at 5 p.m. The scrimmage is open to the public.
SCC Football All-Conference Photo Session Rescheduled
Due to the CIAC postponing state championship football night games, the Southern Connecticut Conference 2009 Football All-Conference Photo Session, originally scheduled for Sunday, has been rescheduled to Sunday, December 13 at noon at West Haven High.
Tonight's Class LL and M football championship games have already been postponed to Sunday. The LL game between Staples and Cheshire will be at 2 p.m. in West Haven and the M game between Berlin and Bethel will be at 2 p.m. at Municipal Stadium in Waterbury.