Blogs > High School Sports

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.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Opportunity knocks for West Haven's Withington

West Haven standout goalie J.P. Withington will attend an evaluation mini camp for the Smiths Falls Bears in Ontario, Canada in May where he'll have a chance to earn a tryout with the team. If he makes the team, Withington would play an eight-month season in the Central Junior A Hockey League in Ontario. For a feature story on Withington and his opportunity, click here


Monday, March 28, 2011

Register All-Area teams for winter season

For the first time, the Register is planning on running the all-area winter teams in a special section rather than on individual days. The target date for the section to run in April 21. We will keep you updated throughout the next couple of weeks. The all-state teams for both boys and girls basketball, along with hockey, should run on Sundays over the next month.

SCC scholar-athletes for February

Ten student-athletes from five high schools have been named The SportsCenter of Connecticut/Southern Connecticut Conference Scholar Athletes of the Month for February. Student athletes who are selected must be a varsity letterwinner and have a 3.0/B average while demonstrating leadership qualities. They are: Aaron Grimaldi of Sheehan (ice hockey), Gabrielle Lupoli of Sheehan (indoor track), Pat Gillen of Shelton (wrestling), Dan Guerrera of Shelton (football, ice hockey and baseball), Blake Cornachini of Notre Dame-West Haven (swimming), Joseph Travaglino of Notre Dame-West Haven (ice hockey), Buddy Shea of Branford (basketball and baseball), Cheyenne Carden of Branford (field hockey, wrestling and lacrosse), Dana Colonese of Guilford (gymnastics) and Henry Hirsch of Guilford (soccer and fencing).

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Boys' hockey: Senior, junior all-star games

The annual Connecticut High School Coaches Association Senior and Junior All-Star games will be held on Saturday at the Milford Ice Pavilion. The Junior All-Stars will face off at 5 p.m. and Senior All-Stars at 7 p.m.

Here are the rosters with the coaches for each team:

J.P. Withington (West Haven), Eric Sugrue (Notre Dame-Fairfield), Tom Brunski (East Haven), Dan Walsh (Xavier), Garren Fritts (Darien), Joey Rush (Fermi), Nash Garceau (North Haven), Gary Criscuolo (Branford), Andy Bostic (Milford), Jared Nelson (East Catholic), Troy Raccuia (Guilford), Ryan Powers (Cheshire), Ian McDonald (Enfield), Tali Lafer (Staples/Weston/Shelton), Jack Johnson (Rockville/Manchester), Greg Matthes (Rocky Hill/Middletown), Matt Coco (Newington/Berlin), Conor Crouse (St. Joseph), Luca Addabbo (Fitch/Ledyard), James Smith (BCL).
Head coach: Gary Lindgren (Amity)
Assistant coaches: Brett Amero (Wilton), Chris Stevenson (Rockville/Manchester)
Alec Mansfield (Amity), Chris Hemhauser (Glastonbury), Aidan Scott (Ridgefield), Tyler Glassman (South Windsor), Don Carnicky (Fairfield Prep), Jim Burt (Hamden), Matt Merola (Notre Dame-West Haven), Pat Holland (Wilton), Dylan Balfore (Suffield), Brian Cohan (Farmington), Tyler Bauer (Hand), Adam McKay (Lyman Hall), Ben Lockhart (New Fairfield/Immaculate), Max Walker (Trumbull), Justin Sullivan (BBD), Jack Murphy (Watertown/Pomperaug), Matt Vitti (Newtown), Mat St. Martin (E.O. Smith), Luke Frechette (Wethersfield), Eric Podbielski (North Branford).
Head coach: Mike Barone (Farmington)
Assistant coaches: Bill Gerosa (Notre Dame-West Haven), Paul Esposito (Newtown)
Max Rothston (Darien), Tyler Carbone (Cheshire), John McLenithan (Milford), Rich DeCarlo (East Haven), Paul Amarone (Hamden), Sean Wilkinson (Ridgefield), A.J. Latulippe (Fermi), Mike Andreucci (North Haven), Don Bazzano (Farmington), Garrett Richardello (East Catholic), Nick Blake (Branford), Andrew Zona (Lyman Hall), Nick Varner (Enfield), Ryan Borsari (Watertown/Pomperaug), Aaron Liu (Staples/Weston/Shelton), Brandon Ralph (Newington/Berlin), Nick Beins (Windsor/Avon), Mike Mattson (Barlow), Angus Denne (Rockville/Manchester), Sam Amendola (North Branford).
Head coach: Ralph Russo (Guilford)
Assistant coaches: Frank Genovese (Fermi), Jim Motyka (BCL)
Auston Essery (Xavier), Nick Burgio (Suffield), Pete Dauten (Shepaug), Nick Dupree (Notre Dame-Fairfield), Riley Hine (Amity), John Ferguson (St. Joseph), Mike Troiano (West Haven), Drew Mozzer (Glastonbury), Colby Cretella (Notre Dame-West Haven), Joe Bonazelli (South Windsor), John Meissner (Wilton), Jarrell Rennie (Hand), Derek Nelson (Guilford), Blake Stascavage (New Fairfield/Immaculate), Mike Ahearn (Trumbull), Matt Tavani (Rocky Hill/Middletown), Steve Segeit (BBD), Alex Kelly (Newtown), Alex Lefevre (E.O. Smith), Brett Fortini Jr. (Wethersfield).
Head coach: Rusty Granacker (BBD)
Assistant coaches: Larry Vieira (Darien), Joe Bonfiglio (Enfield)

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

HOCKEY: Curtain closes on Crouse combination at St. Joseph

Here's a feature story on the final game with the father/son combination of coach Marty Crouse and senior Conor Crouse in St. Joseph's 5-0 loss to Fairfield Prep in the Division I state championship game. Read it here

Saturday, March 19, 2011

State Open Swimming Recap

The boys' swimming State Open championship took place Saturday at Yale's Kiphuth Pool. Some highlights:

Greenwich wins 27th title since 1973. Fellow FCIAC members Darien, Ridgefield and New Canaan finished second through fourth. Defending champion Pomperaug was fifth.

Among area teams, Xavier was 9th, Amity was 14th and Branford was 17th.

Amity junior Eric Holden wins the 100 breaststroke, finishing in a State Open record time of 56.37 seconds. It was the second straight title in that event for Holden, who has also won two straight Class L titles. Holden was also third in the 200 individual medley.

Ridgefield senior Andrew Klutey wins the 200 freestyle, 500 freestyle, and swam on the winning 200 freestyle relay team, and on the 400 freestyle relay team that was third.

Xavier senior Kevin Kosciuk was second in the 200 IM.

Haddam-Killingworth senior Ryan Buys was second in the 100 butterfly.

Senior Michael Dustin led Greenwich by winning the 100 butterfly and third in the 50 freestyle. Dustin also swam on the winning 400 freestyle relay team.

Other area swimmers earning medals were:
Cheshire sophomore Gregory Han (sixth in the 200 IM, third in the 100 breaststroke) and Notre Dame-West Haven junior Nicholas Celestin (sixth in the 100 backstroke).

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State Open swimming today

The State Open swimming championships will be contested today starting at 2:30 p.m. at Kiphuth Pool at Yale's Payne Whitney Gym.

Defending champion Pomperaug, Greenwich, New Canaan, Sacred Heart, among others, are expected to contend for the team title.

Click here for results from last night's diving championships, as well as pysch sheets for the swimming portion.

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Wednesday, March 16, 2011

New Canaan wins Class M swimming

A pair of Sheehan swimmers placed second in their respective events at the Class M state championships Wednesday at the Freeman Center on the campus of Wesleyan University.

Senior Jared Thurston was second in the 50 yard freestyle, finishing in 21.83 seconds. Teammate Joshua Bjornberg was the runner-up in the 100 breaststroke (:59.52).

Notre Dame-West Haven’s Nicholas Celestin and Brett Borgognone placed fourth and fifth, respectively, in the 100 butterfly.

Tyler Olt of Branford was sixth in the 100 freestyle, while Hand’s Richard Denton placed fourth in the 100 backstroke.

New Canaan won the title, scoring 567.5 points. Darien was second (517.5) and Brookfield was third (481). Branford placed fifth, Notre Dame was 11th, and Sheehan finished 13th.

View complete results here.

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Foran third in Class S; claim two individual winners

The Foran swimming team placed third for the second straight year in Class S. Sacred Heart won its second title in three years and tallied 591.5 points. Defending champion Weston finished second with 382 points. Foran was next with 336, and Haddam-Killingworth was fourth with 327.

Foran sophomore Dylan Swanepoel won his second consecutive title in the 500 yard butterfly. Swanepoel was also second in the 200 freestyle. In the 500, Swanepoel edged Suffield's Kyle Eheander by four-tenths of a second.

"My coach was telling me to watch out for him (Eheander)," Swanepoel said. "I kept an eye open for him. It was a good race until the end."

Junior Richard Enders won the 100 backstroke for the Lions. Foran believed it could finish as high as second overall, although the Lions lacked depth. Foran brought just eight swimmers to the meet.

"We're really happy with it," Enders said. "We only had eight people from this team here. Other teams had a lot more. But we're really, really happy with third."

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Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Greenwich wins in Class LL swimming

Greenwich has won its 18th straight divisional crown by winning the Class LL title on Tuesday. Fairfield Prep was second.

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Xavier's Kosciuk wins individual medley

Xavier senior Kevin Kosciuk won the 200 yard individual medley, finishing in a school-record time of 1:54.69, at the Class LL state championship. Kosciuk finished second last season.

Ridgefield's Brian Bollerman, who won the event last season, finished second in 1:55.20.

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Class LL swimming begins at 7:15 p.m.

Greenwich is seeking its 18th straight title. Fairfield Prep and Xavier should each vie for a top 3 finish. Check back for updates about the Class LL meet throughout the night.

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Pomperaug wins Class L swimming

Pomperaug won the Class L state boys' swimming title Tuesday at the Freeman Center at Wesleyan in Middletown. It was the fourth straight title for the Panthers. Amity was second, while Cheshire was fourth.

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Holden a winner in the 100 breaststroke

Amity junior Eric Holden won the 100 breaststroke at the Class L swimming meet. Holden won in 57.39 seconds, edging Cheshire's Gregory Han, who placed second in 57.85.

Holden won the event for the second straight year. Last year, Holden set a meet record with a time of 57.30.

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Cheshire's Han wins 200 IM

Cheshire sophomore Gregory Han won the 200 individual medley in 1:54.51. Amity's Eric Holden was second in 1:57.39.

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BOYS' BASKETBALL: Lyman Hall bench steps up in quartefinal victory

The Lyman Hall bench, led by Joe DeSandre, made an impact in the Trojans' 51-42 win over No. 5 Berlin in the Class L quarterfinals. Read this feature story by Mike Madera here

Amity wins Class L's first event

the 200 medley relay. The Spartans finished in 1:40.93, edging Pomperaug by three-tenths of a second. Cheshire was third.

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Class L swimming begins at 3 p.m.

From Wesleyan in Middletown. Follow this blog for updates throughout the meet.

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Monday, March 14, 2011

Foran swimming a contender in Class S

Foran, which finished third in Class S in 2010, is again one of the contenders in that class. The Class S meet is scheduled for Wednesday at 3 p.m. at Wesleyan in Middletown.

Foran finished 8-5 during dual meets this year, and placed ninth at the SCC meet on March 2. However, competing against schools of its own size in Class S will allow the Lions to vie for the title. Sacred Heart, Haddam-Killingworth and Weston are also expected to contend for the title.

"Class S, we would definitely like to finish in the top 5," Foran coach Kristin Skuches said. "We know there's a very small point spread between second and seventh place right now so going in, definitely top 5. I'd love to see us repeat at third like we did last year, but definitely top 5. That's where we want to be."

Foran had a successful day at the trials this past Saturday.

"I think that was key," Skuches said. "We go into trials trying to place our kids as high as we possibly can. They went in and did that on Saturday. Getting all three of our relays into that top 8, having three kids in the final heat (of individual events), that will definitely help us try to achieve that goal."

Foran brings just eight swimmers to the divisional meet. However, sophomore Dylan Swanepoel (200 freestyle, 500 freestyle), junior Richard Enders (100 freestyle, 100 backstroke), and senior Andrew DeLuke (50 freestyle) will all compete in the final heat in their respective events.

Read more about Foran in Tuesday's Register.

Swimming Divisional meet schedule (all meets at Wesleyan):

Class LL, Tuesday, 7:15 p.m.
Class L, Tuesday, 3 p.m.
Class M, Wednesday, 7:15 p.m.
Class S, Wednesday, 3 p.m.

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Thursday, March 10, 2011

Boys' hockey: Sites, times for CIAC D-I quarterfinals
Sites and times have been determined for the CIAC Division boys hockey quarterfinals on Saturday.
South Windsor vs. Xavier, at Trinity Community Sports Plex (Hartford), 3 p.m.; New Canaan vs. Glastonbury at Northford Ice Pavilion, 4 p.m.; Fairfield Prep vs. Hamden at Bennett Rink (West Haven), 5 p.m.; St. Joseph vs. Ridgefield at Terry Conners Rink (Stamford), 7 p.m.

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Boys' hockey: Who are the best players right now?

Who are the best boys’ high school hockey players in Connecticut this season?
This is the $64,000 question for many high school boys’ hockey sportswriters who organize all-state and all-star teams this time of year.

The philosophy at the New Haven Register has always been to find the best of the best, combining all three divisions and making selections from a statewide pool of players for a special elite all-state first team of 12 players. There are three teams of 12 players each with the first team of 12 the elite selections.
Every position does not have to be represented in this format. If the 12 best players in the state happen to be eight forwards and four goalies, so be it. It could also be four forwards, four defensemen and four goalies. This year it is very tough with so many good players at every position statewide.

Who are the best players at each position right now? Here are some of them:

At forward you have players like C.J. Carignan, Nick Amarone and Jim Burt at Hamden, Dan Walsh at Xavier, Joe Bonnizelli at South Windsor, Ethan Holdaway at Glastonbury, Sean Wilkinson at Ridgefield, Bryan Puffer, David White and A.J. Unker at Fairfield Prep, Corey Shea and Joe Bianchi at Amity, Troy Raccuia at Guilford, Conor Crouse and Pat Corcoran at St. Joseph, Nick Kruczek and Tyler Bauer at Hand, Matt Dupont, Ryan Powers and Owen Powers at Cheshire, Kyle Wehmoff and Aaron Liu at Staples-Weston-Shelton and Brandon Martone at Notre Dame-West Haven.

There are also many talented goalies in the state like Chris Hemhauser at Glastonbury, Tom Nowacki at New Canaan, Alec Mansfield at Amity, Austin Essery at Xavier, J.P. Withington at West Haven, Greg Harney at Notre Dame-West Haven, Zach Carrano at St. Joseph, Eric Sugrue at Notre Dame-Fairfield, Tyler Carbone at Cheshire, Matt Hoff at Hamden and John Galiani at Prep.

Among the many solid defensemen are Tom Krieger at New Canaan, Danny McMullan at Ridgefield, Pat Holland at Wilton, Tom Brunski at East Haven, Sean Carfi at Glastonbury, R.J. Ugolik and Brandon Dadio at Hamden, Christian Cattaruzza at Guilford, Zach Hunter at Northwest Catholic, Kevin Dubrow at Notre Dame-West Haven, Jay Johns at North Haven, Tom Worsfold and Nick Downing at Prep

If you think someone else belongs on this list, add him in a comment below.

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Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Boys' Hockey: CIAC D-I nearly true to form
The first round of the CIAC Division I boys' hockey tournament is in the books and except for one upset the games went true to form with the higher seeds winning today (Wednesday).
The only upset of the day, actually a mild upset, happened at the Bennett Rink with No. 9 Glastonbury defeating No. 8 Notre Dame-West Haven 3-2 in overtime.
No. 2 seed Fairfield Prep had a near scare, needing overtime to win 2-1 over pesky No. 15 Darien. Coach Larry Vieira of Milford always has his teams ready for the postseason and the Blue Wave nearly pulled off the upset.
No. 1 seed New Canaan def. No. 16 Greenwich 5-1 to remain unbeaten at 24-0.
My pre-tournament picks for the final four are still alive with Prep, Xavier, New Canaan and St. Joseph all moving on to the quarterfinals. New Canaan and St. Joseph seem destined to meet for a fourth time this season in the semifinals.

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BOYS' BASKETBALL: Sheehan upsets No. 7 Pomperaug

Sheehan's Mike Vallone and his fellow seniors ensured that their high school careers would continue for at least another game, leading the 26th-seeded Titans to a 56-43 upset win over No. 7 Pomperaug in the Class L state tournament. Read the story here

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

GIRLS' BASKETBALL: Martinik reflects on first season at Amity

Amity girls' basketball coach Michelle Martinik reflects on her first season as head coach, one in which the Spartans posted an 11-10 record and qualified for both the SCC playoffs and Class LL state tournament. Read the story here

Monday, March 7, 2011

Foran boys' basketball storms past Granby in Class M

The Foran boys' basketball team will take on top-seeded Career in the second round of the Class M tournament following Monday night's 59-42 first-round win over Granby. Read the story here

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Gillen, Demichele win at NE Wrestling tournament

Shelton senior Pat Gillen defeated Brendan Battles-Santos from Nauset, Mass. by technical fall in the third period to win the championship at 215 pounds.
The victory marked career win No. 200 for Gillen, which tied Ledyard’s T.J. Hepburn for the state record.
Hepburn accomplished the feat from 2004-2007.
Gillen can set the record at the national tournament, which will be held later this month.
Hand junior Joe Demichele won his first New England title after emerging with a thrilling 3-2 victory over Ben Tammany of Timberlane, N.H. in triple overtime at 285.

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Boys' hockey: Fate of SCC tournament on hold

Earlier this week it was reported by this reporter that boys' hockey coaches in the Southern Connecticut Conference two weeks ago voted unanimously to discontinue the SCC Division II tournament.
Athletic directors of the SCC originally were going to decide the ultimate fate of the SCC Division II tournament at a meeting on Wednesday. However, because many SCC athletic directors can't make that meeting due to their teams playing in the CIAC state tournaments (D-I, D-II and D-III), they have decided to meet in April after the season ends to discuss the tournament's fate.
"It makes sense to put the decision on hold because you want all the ADs to be available," SCC commissioner Al Carbone said. "I'm glad the decision will wait until then because I also want to have one or two coaches at the meeting to give their reasons for discontinuing the tournament."
There is no SCC Division I tournament.
The SCC Division II coaches voted to discontinue the event to avoid playing league teams three or even four times a season. They also were concerned with playing the semifinals and finals on back-to-back days and wanted to have a break before the CIAC state tournaments.
No. 3 Hand defeated No. 1 Guilford 3-1 today (Saturday) in what potentially could be the final SCC Division II championship game.

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Carter second at 160

Hale-Ray's Dillon Carter lost to Nate Lawrence of Timberlane, N.H. by a 7-1 decision at 160 pounds. Carter was also second at the State Open and won the Class S title.

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Carroll loses at 130

Hand's Ed Carroll lost to Mike Meyers of Warwick, R.I. by a 5-2 decision at 130 pounds. It was Meyers' third New England title.

Carroll had won SCC, Class L and State Open titles this season.

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Hand's Crisco finishes third

Hand freshman Will Crisco finished third at 103 pounds at the New England Wrestling championship.
Crisco, who placed second at last week's State Open, defeated Connor Sheehan, of Fryeburg Academy (Maine), by a 7-3 decision.

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New England track results

Can be found here.

Here's a report of the meet from the website

Connecticut athletes took home ten of the first place plaques from the 24th Annual New England Interscholastic Boys' and Girls' Indoor Track and Field Championships held on March 4, 2011 at the Reggie Lewis Track and Athletic Center, Roxbury Community College, MA.

In the Championship Track events, victories were claimed by:

· In the last event of the meet, the Bloomfield Girls 4x400m Relay team set a meet record of 3:56.17 (US#11 mark) to eclipse the previous mark of 3:57.94 set by Westerly H S in 2003. Hillhouse placed 4th in 3:59.66 while Windsor was 5th at 4:00.62.

· In the Boys 4x400m Relay, State Champion Staples won with a 3:25.46 mark as the Danbury squad place 4th in 3:28.48.

· Paris Taft of Career in the 600m Run in 1:33.96 as she won the 4th of five heats to post a US#5 mark.

· In the 4x200m Relay, the Windsor Girls team ran to the win in 1:43.98 with Danbury 3rd in 1:44.33, Middletown 4th in 1:44.41 and Hillhouse 6th in 1:44.69.

· Sophomore Sarah Gillespie of NorthWest Catholic broke the tape in 2:55.37 while Sarah Wilson (Suffield) placed 3rd in 2:57.89, Cara Dorris (Glastonbury) placed 4th in 2:58.13 and Jackie Nicholas (Nonnewaug) placed 5th in 2:58.66.

· In the Boys 1000m Run, State Open Champion Alex Levine of Danbury took the win in a US#8 mark of 2:28.97 as Brian Poirier (NW Catholic) was 4th in 2:32.64 and Ryan Pajor (Glastonbury) was 6th in 2:34.00.

In the Championship Field events, victories were claimed by:

· John Wlasuk of Newtown added the New England Shot Put title to his State Open title with a winning heave of 58'3.75".

· In the High Jump, Jamie Tobias of Bloomfield was the only one over the 6'9" height to claim first place as state athletes Adrian Ilinski (Lewis Mills) and Jake Scinto (Cheshire) tied for third at 6'5".

· Jake Scinto of Cheshire fared better in the Long Jump as he leaped 22' 6.25" to claim first place.

· In the Girls Long Jump, Maya Walton of Danbury was a quarter-inch better than runner-up Wahnetah Carty of Norwich Free Academy, 18'5.25" to 18' 5".

Other top state performers who earned All New England status with a finish in the top six places at the 24th New England Championships included:

· In the Boys 55 Meter Hurdles – Zachary Langs (Windsor) 5th in 7.64 and 6th place Aaron Strums (Bloomfield) in 7.69.

· Girls 55 Meter Hurdles – Julia Levesque (Simsbury) 2nd in 8.48

· Girls 55 Meter Dash - Ashia Wright (Cheshire) was third in 7.23

· Boys 55 Meter Dash - Donarth Thompson (Bulkeley) placed second in 6.46.

· Girls 4x800m Finals – Fourth place claimed by Immaculate-Danbury in 9:27.92

· Boys 4x800m Finals – The Staples team was 3rd in 7:59.49 while Hamden was 4th in 8:01.03.

· Boys 4x200 Meter Relay - Darien placed 3rd in 1:32.24 and Hillhouse was 5th in 1:33.37.

· Boys 1 Mile Run – State athletes took 3 of top 6 led by runner-up Clark Shurtleff of Amity in 4:20.76 with Daniel Nestor (Hand) 3rd in 4:21.42 and Harry Warnick (Fairfield Warde) 5th in 4:23.40.

· Girls 1 Mile Run – repeat effort by state athlete taking 3 of top 6 with runner-up Mara Lieberman of Hamden in a photo-finish with Kellie Davis (Hillhouse) 3rd, both timed in 4:59.69 and Aubrey Waggoner (Conard) in 5th at 5:06.02.

· Girls 300 Meter Dash - Precious Holmes of Hillhouse was runner-up in 39.66 with Rayanna Relerford (Bloomfield) in 4th at 40.73.

· Boys 300 Meter Dash - Nainy Bah of Morgan was third in 35.54.

· Girls 2 Mile Run – Bid by defending champion Lindsay Crevoiserat (Glastonbury) lost to sophomore Aisha McAdams of N.Kingstown- RI by a margin of 10:42.36 to 10:49.86 with 3rd place to Reid Watson (Glastonbury) in 11:03.72 and 4th to Cara Dorris (Glastonbury) in 11:07.62.

· Boys 2 Mile Run – Third place effort from Connor Rog of Fairfield Prep in 9:23.84 with Harry Warnick of Fairfield Warde 4th in 9:27.51.

· Girls High Jump - Ashley Raymond of Career placed 4th with a height of 5'-5".

· Girls Shot Put – Runner-up earned by Cherraine Davis of Southington with a toss of 40' 1.5" with Katherine Simon of Amity in 6th with throw of 38'-4"

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Four advance to N.E. Wrestling final

Four local wrestlers have advanced to the championship final of the New England Wrestling tournament Saturday at the New Haven Athletic Center. They are:

130: Ed Carroll, Hand
160: Dillon Carter, Hale-Ray
215: Pat Gillen, Shelton
285: Joe Demichele, Hand

Finals are expected to begin at 7:30 p.m.

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Boys' hockey: CIAC pairings released, Branford DQed from tournament
CHESHIRE – The Branford boys hockey team, which qualified during the regular season for the CIAC Division II tournament with a 6-12 record, has been disqualified from the tournament by the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference, which regulates high school sports in the state.
The CIAC met Saturday morning for its boys’ hockey pairings meeting to determine seedings, matchups, game times and sites for Division I, II and II. During the meeting, as usual the officials also discussed the possibility of teams being disqualified due to various types of infractions. The only team disqualified was Branford .
“Branford was on probation this season for what carried over from last season (too many major penalties),” CIAC boys’ hockey chairman Tom Neagle said. “CIAC’s Rule 13 states that if a team accrues four or more non-minor penalties (majors or misconducts) during the season while it is on probation, then that team is disqualified from the state tournament.
“Unfortunately Branford had four of those non-minor penalties and has been disqualified.”
Branford went 4-2 in its last six regular season games to finish 8-12. Teams need a minimum of a 40 percent winning percentage to qualify for the state tournament. At 8-12 the Hornets were right at 40 percent.
“We had known we could not get what the CIAC considered four major penalties this year after receiving four last year,” Branford coach Adolph Brink said. “Myself, our athletic director and school principal appealed the ruling in person this (Saturday) morning (at CIAC headquarters). We appealed one of the considered major penalties to the ruling members of the CIAC hockey committee. Our appeal was rejected.
“As one would expect we are disappointed for the Branford hockey Program.”
In other news, there were rumors going around Connecticut rinks the past week that the St. Bernard-Bacon Academy-NFA coop team had an ineligible player and would have to forfeit most of its wins this season. That would have allowed teams like Lyman Hall and Milford to qualify for the D-II state tournament. Lyman Hall, 7-13, lost one game to the coop team and Milford, 6-13-1, lost twice to the coop team. With a St. Bernard-Bacon Academy-NFA forfeiture the Trojans would have moved to 8-12 and Milford would be at 8-11-1 allowing them to compete in the tournament.
“We heard the rumors about St. Bernard and an ineligible player, but we learned that’s all they were, just rumors,” Neagle said. “St. Bernard is fine.”
For the first time the CIAC is offering online advanced ticket sales for the semifinals and finals of the boys’ hockey tournament (all divisions). The tickets are only $8 each, $2 cheaper than they would be at the door. If you want to buy tickets in advance you need to go to
“We’re starting to get some advanced ticket sales now and have about a handful,” CIAC spokesman Matt Fischer said. “We’ll allow the advanced sales to take place up to an hour before game time for the semis and finals.
“The advantage is the advance tickets are cheaper and when you come to the rink you don’t have to wait in line to buy your tickets.”

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Friday, March 4, 2011

Updated New England Wrestling Brackets

Click here to see updated brackets from the New England wrestling tournament, being held at the New Haven Athletic Center. Action continues on Saturday. Championship finals are expected to be contested at 7:30 p.m.

At 103, Hand's Will Criso has advanced to the championship quarterfinals. As did Hand's Ed Carroll (130), Hale-Ray's Dillon Carter (160), Shelton's Pat Gillen and Xavier's Sean Marinan at 215, and Hand's Joe Demichele at 285.

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Thursday, March 3, 2011

Boys' hockey: Coaches vote to discontinue SCC D-II tournament

For years the Division I hockey teams in the Southern Connecticut Conference have opted not to have a post-season tournament, mostly to avoid playing a team for a third or fourth time in the CIAC Division I tournament.
The move also allowed the teams to schedule non-conference scrimmage games against opponents of their choosing the week prior to the state tournament to prepare for the postseason.
SCC commissioner Al Carbone confirmed that two weeks ago at a SCC hockey coaches meeting the Division II coaches voted to discontinue their tournament after this season as well for the same reasons.
This season’s SCC Division II tournament begins on Friday at Bennett Rink with No. 1 Guilford facing No. 4 Branford at 5:30 p.m. and No. 2 Cheshire facing No. 3 Hand at 7:30 p.m. The championship is Saturday at Bennett Rink at 6 p.m.
“We D-II coaches wanted to be in concert with the D-I teams as far as beating ourselves up so close to the tournament,” Branford coach Adolph Brink said. “Depending on how things shake out, we could end up playing Hand four times this year and two times in tournament settings within a week.
“I feel that having some time to get healthy and prepared for the CIAC tourney is just to tough when you are possibly playing two games the weekend before a Tuesday round one game in the CIAC tournament.”
The SCC schools’ athletic directors will determine the final fate of the SCC D-II tournament at their annual meeting on Wednesday.
“I understand all the arguments the coaches have for doing this, but the decision to discontinue or continue the tournament will be made by the athletic directors,” SCC commissioner Al Carbone said. “It’s a little disappointing. The thing is we reinstituted the tournament four years ago at the urging of the coaches.
“One concern coaches have had is holding the semis and final on back-to-back days like we are doing this season. In the future we can do it earlier in the week, maybe with a Wednesday-Saturday schedule. Thing is this is all about the kids and giving them more games to play. Let’s make changes but let’s make changes for the better.”
The SCC Division II coaches in the tournament who were contacted had their concerns. Guilford coach Ralph Russo, Cheshire coach Jim Riccitelli and Hand coach Mark Andreucci said they and their players were all excited about playing in the SCC tournament, something that was a team goal in the preseason.
In an earlier interview for an advance story on the SCC tournament, Russo said, “There might be some talk about the games being too close to states which a lot of coaches do not favor. But we are looking at a chance to play some clean competitive hockey before states. Our players are looking forward to the games.”
Ultimately, the future of the SCC D-II tournament will lie with the league’s athletic directors next week.

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Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Fairfield Prep wins SCC swimming

Fairfield Prep won its seventh straight SCC swimming championship Wednesday despite winning just one event.

Xavier was second and Amity was third.

Amity junior Eric Holden won the 200 individual medley and the 100 breaststroke and was named the meet's most outstanding swimmer.

Notre Dame-West Haven junior Nick Celestin won the 100 backstroke and the 100 butterfly.

Lyman Hall freshman Kyle Neri was first in the 100 freestyle and finished second in the 50 freestyle behind Sheehan's Jared Thurston.

To view complete results, click here.

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Boys' hockey: Amity's Corey Shea reaches milestone

Amity forward Corey Shea recently scored his 100th career point for the Spartans.
Shea had three goals and three assists against SCC foe West Haven on Jan. 29 to reach the milestone.
"I am just so happy and proud of that kid," Amity coach Gary Lindgren said. "He works so hard and he's such a solid hockey player. And wow, what a way to do it, with three goals and three assists in one game."
Shea had 20 points as a sophomore, 61 as a junior and has 34 as a senior for 115 points overall...and counting.

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Boys' hockey: Buy advance tickets online for CIAC semis, finals

The Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Association, which governs high school sports in the state, is offering advance ticket sales for the CIAC Division I, II and III boys' hockey semifinals and finals.
Ice hockey is the first sport to offer online ticketing and the CIAC plans to expand the online ticketing option to other sports in the spring.
The divisional semifinals and finals in ice hockey are the first events where advance tickets can be purchased online as part of the CIAC's partnership with TicketLeap. Advance tickets, which are offered at a lower rate ($8) then tickets purchased at the event, are on sale now at
You go to the site, go to the specific semifinal and/or final game you want to buy tickets, click on it and using a credit card you can purchase as many tickets as you like.
I went to the site and tried it out and it works!
Online purchasing is the exclusive method sponsored by the CIAC to obtain pre-sale tickets in hockey.
For more information, go to the CIAC web site ( listed above.

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Tuesday, March 1, 2011

West Haven beats North Haven, ends Indians' season

The West Haven hockey team got a much-needed victory with Tuesday night's 7-5 win over North Haven. It was a must-win game for the Indians, who finished the season 7-13 and out of the playoffs. Read the story here