Play it Forward scholarship given to MAU sophomore


Sports Editor

SHAFTSBURY – For Mount Anthony Union High School alum Diane Peacock, her Blue Lollipop Road’s Play It Forward isn’t so much about playing soccer – it’s about spreading the love.

Now, in its third year, the event is starting to turn into the vision that Peacock, a 1995 MAU grad, had all along.

“The love is spreading more and more each year and people are spreading the word as well,” Peacock said. “There’s a lot of old faces here, but also some of the current players. It’s turning into a generational thing.”

The event honors former Mount Anthony soccer players Maria Greene and Brandy Brown, who died in a car accident in 1994.

Members from each family were in attendance, accepting a poster signed by all the players in the alumni game.

After Friday night’s Welcome Back Party, dozens gathered at Howard Park for the game and to remember good times and good friends. Then on Saturday night, people stayed in the area for a barbeque.

“It’s a great event, bringing in all the former Mount Anthony players,” said Mick Goldsmith, a referee for the alumni game. “It’s a good feeling of camaraderie through soccer. It’s the thing that everyone here has in common.”

Goldsmith has a unique perspective. His son, Lee, a 2002 graduate and a former Mount Anthony soccer player himself, died in 2009 after a battle with cancer. Now, MAU hosts the Lee Goldsmith Memorial soccer tournament, a high-level pre-season event for the Goldsmith family.

“A lot of people in the community don’t realize the support for [an event like this],” Goldsmith said. “Some of the people involved have traveled a long way to support it.”

BLR gave a scholarship to MAU sophomore Jami Mathers, who said she plans to use the money toward a school-sponsored trip to Italy next spring.

“Coach [Anna] Swierad said I should sign up for [the scholarship],” Mathers said. “I’ve always liked traveling and meeting new people.”

Mathers said seeing all different alumni play in the game was a cool experience.

“It’s really sweet to see all the people here, it’s awesome,” Mathers said. “It’s cool to see it go through the years.”

Blue Lollipop Road founder Diane Peacock, left, awards the Play it Forward scholarship to MAU sophomore Jami Mathers.

Blue Lollipop Road founder Diane Peacock, left, awards the Play it Forward scholarship to MAU sophomore Jami Mathers.

2013 All-Banner baseball team

Mount Anthony's Zach Bahan is the 2013 All-Banner baseball Player of the Year. (Adam Samrov)

Mount Anthony’s Zach Bahan is the 2013 All-Banner baseball Player of the Year. (Adam Samrov)

Mount Anthony Union High School third baseman Zach Bahan knew he wouldn’t get much to hit this season.

As one of the more prolific batters for the Patriots the past couple of seasons, his reputation for making things happen at the plate has been well-documented.

This year, with pitchers trying to avoid the 6-foot-3 senior, Bahan still put up some eye-popping numbers — even better than before — which is why he has been named as the 2013 All-Banner Player of the Year in baseball.

“He’s one of the best in the state, hands down,” said Mount Anthony coach Walt Parmenter. “He just crushed the ball this year.”

Bahan, a three-year varsity starter, batted .590 (23-for-39), with nine RBI, five doubles, a triple and two homers. Out of 54 total plate appearances, Bahan failed to reach base only 13 times the entire season, an on-base percentage of nearly .700. He was on the first -team for the Marble Valley League.

“He put up some hellacious numbers, that’s pretty awesome,” Parmenter said. “He rarely swung at bad pitches … he’d wait pitchers out to get his pitch and capitalize on it.”

Bahan’s prowess at the plate gave a boost to the rest of the lineup, giving hitters in front of him good pitches to hit, so they could theoretically face him with the bases empty.

“We faced Mount Anthony in a scrimmage and he hit the cover off the ball,” said Cambridge coach Jason Waite.

“He’s definitely going to be missed next year, it’s going to be tough to replace that offense,” Parmenter said.



Catcher: Cameron Bow, MAU, senior: Having the envious position of hitting ahead of Bahan, Bow, a first-team MVL all-star, made pitchers pay if they gave him something good to hit. Bow hit .468 (22-for-47), scored 13 runs, drove in 11 more and slugged .531. On defense, Bow had an accurate arm, throwing out his share of baserunners.

“Between he and Zach, they were the best 1-2 punch in the [Marble Valley] League,” Parmenter said.

First base: Noah Rizio, BBA, junior: Rizio manned the third spot in the Bulldogs’ lineup the entire year, helping BBA to the Division II title game. Rizio, a first-team MVL choice, hit .373, drove in 16 runs and led the team with nine doubles, including a game-winner against Missisquoi ace Matt St. Amour in the D2 semifinal.

Second base: Robert England, BBA, senior: England was the catalyst for the Bulldogs in 2013, leading the team in most offensive categories from the leadoff spot. He hit .500 (21-for-42), scored 30 runs, worked 16 walks and had an on-base percentage of .672.

He also was part of the most dynamic double-play combo in the area, using nearly flawless defense to help his pitchers.

Shortshop: Zack Stewart, BBA, senior: Stewart was the prototypical No. 2 hitter for the 17-3 Bulldogs. Stewart hit .444 (24-for-54), scored 26 runs, drove in 14 runs, walked 10 times and maybe the most impressive stat — he only struck out once. On the defensive side, Stewart used his remarkable range to prevent runs, most notably making a diving stop behind second base against Fair Haven in the quarterfinals to preserve a Bulldogs shutout.

Outfield: Caleb Rowland, Cambridge, sophomore: In his first year on varsity after switching from lacrosse to baseball, Rowland was steady for the Indians, hitting .280 with 12 RBI, 12 walks and seven runs scored. He also made a big difference on defense, keeping runners on their toes if the ball was hit his way, Waite said.

Outfield: Alex Alberti, BBA, senior: Hitting seventh all season behind teammates that got a lot more publicity, Alberti quietly had a terrific season at the plate. He hit .359 (14-for-39), driving in 12 runs, scoring 11 more and walking eight times. He was good at working deep counts, giving pitchers fits with long at-bats.

Outfield: Weston Lozier, MAU, senior: Leading off for the Patriots all year long, Lozier was the spark at the top of MAU’s lineup. Lozier hit .283 (17-for-60), scoring nine runs., setting the table for Bow and Bahan. He also played a nearly flawless left field, a tough place to negotiate with the hill near the warning track.

Utility: Cody Gaines, Hoosick Falls, senior: Gaines led the way offensively for the Panthers in a 15-7 season reaching the Class C quarterfinals. Gaines had a knack for getting on base, reaching more than 40 percent of the time. He hit .333 (27-for-81), leading the team in hits. He also scored 16 runs from the leadoff spot in Coach Mike Lilac’s lineup.


Alex Hawley, Arlington, senior: Hawley was called on to take the ball in the Eagles’ most important games, including their D-IV playdown against Chelsea and the quarterfinal against South Royalton. Hawley was at his best against Division IV rival West Rutland, striking out 15 and only allowing four hits in a gem as Arlington finished 5-12 in 2013.

Kealan Hitt, Hoosick Falls, sophomore: Hitt was a major surprise in his first year at the varsity level, going 7-2. He had a 2.33 ERA in 45 innings, striking out 46 — more than one an inning. In a tough stretch of consecutive games because of rainouts, Hitt answered the call each time, pitching a full game one day and three innings of relief the next to save the Panther arms.

Matt Upright, MAU, junior: With graduation hitting the Patriots hard on the mound, Upright became the de facto No.1 starter early in the year. He was the victim of circumstance regarding wins as MAU lost five games by one run in 2013. He threw 46 innings, going 2-4. He allowed 38 hits and only 13 earned runs, a 1.98 ERA, and struck out 32.

Jake Stalcup, BBA, senior: The Middlebury commit was the ace of the Bulldogs’ staff, throwing 53 ⅓ innings, allowing a mere eight earned runs for a miniscule 1.05 ERA. He struck out 58, more than one batter per inning and only walked 13. Stalcup, a first-team MVL all-star, had a penchant for coming up large when his team needed him — he came into the second inning in relief against Missisquoi, allowing two runs and giving his team a chance to come back.

Matt Parmenter, Cambridge, senior: Parmenter, a second-team Wasaren League all-star, and fellow senior Shaeden Mosso were a formidable 1-2 on the mound for the Indians. Parmenter was a power pitcher, striking out 58 hitters in only 32 innings, nearly two per frame, and had the lowest ERA in the area, at 0.34.

Shaeden Mosso, Cambridge, senior: Mosso, a first-team Wasaren all-star was nearly as dominant as his classmate on the hill, coming up with a 1.56 ERA in 25 innings pitched with 42 strikeouts in a treacherous Wasaren League schedule.


Weston Muench, BBA, senior

Brady Sausville, Cambridge, junior

Logan Brogue, Hoosick Falls, senior

Ellis Baker, MAU, junior

Dylan Beavin, BBA, junior

Olden Dwyer, Arlington, senior

Alex Trayah, Arlington, senior

Billy Pine, Hoosick Falls, senior

Spring playoff pairings

ports-webThe VPA released the last and biggest batch of high school playoff pairings this morning. Local teams still in the mix include:

Mount Anthony

Boys lacrosse (14-2) — No. 2 seed, hosts winner of No. 7 Mount Mansfield/No. 10 Burlington in quarterfinals on Saturday at 2 p.m. With win: Would host semifinal on June 11 at 4 p.m.

Girls lacrosse (10-6) — No. 3 seed, hosts No. 6 Spaulding (6-8) in quarterfinals on Friday at 4 p.m. With win: Would face either No. 2 Middlebury or winner of No. 7 Mount Mansfield/No. 10 Rutland on June 11 at 4 p.m.

Softball (14-2) — No. 4 seed, hosts No. 13 Champlain Valley (4-12) on Tuesday at 4:30 p.m. With win: Would host winner of No. 5 Missisquoi/No. 12 Rutland on Friday at 4:30 p.m.

Baseball (5-11) — No. 12 seed, travels to face Rice (10-6) tomorrow at 4:30 p.m. With win: Would face winner of No. 4 Colchester/No. 13 Spaulding in quarterfinals on Friday at 4:30 p.m.

Burr and Burton

Baseball (14-2) — No. 1 seed, hosts No. 16 Milton (1-15) tomorrow at 4:30 p.m. With win: Would host quarterfinal against winner of No. 8 Bellows Falls/No. 9 Fair Haven on Saturday at 4:30 p.m.

Girls lacrosse (14-2) — No. 2 seed, hosts winner of No. 7 Harwood/No. 10 Stowe on Saturday at 4 p.m. With win: Would host semifinal on June 11 at 4 p.m.

Boys lacrosse (5-10) — No. 11 seed, travels to face No. 6 Rice (9-7) on Wednesday at 4 p.m. With win: Would face winner of No. 3 Green Mountain Valley/No. 14 Mount Abraham on Saturday at 3 p.m. 

Softball (5-11) — No. 11 seed, travels to face No. 6 BFA-St. Albans (11-5) on Wednesday at 4:30 p.m. With win: Would face winner of No. 3 Brattleboro/No. 14 North Country on Friday at 4:30 p.m.

Girls tennis (13-0) — No. 1 seed, hosts No. 5 Springfield (7-5) in semifinals on Tuesday at 3 p.m. With win: Would host state final on Thursday at 3 p.m.

Golf — Wednesday at Woodstock Country Club. Division I tee times begin at 9:30 a.m.


Baseball (5-10) — No. 9 seed, travels to No. 8 Concord (4-8) tomorrow at 4:30 p.m. With win: Would travel to face top-seeded South Royalton (14-1) in quarterfinals on Friday at 4:30 p.m.

March Madness: ‘So you’re telling me there’s a chance’

“What are my chances?
“Not good.”
“Do you mean not good like 1-out-of-100?”
“I’d say more like 1-out-of-a-million.”
“So you’re telling me there’s a chance…”

Nothing makes me feel more like Lloyd Christmas — Jim Carrey in “Dumb and Dumber” — than first, frantic day of NCAA March Madness. Every year, I’m 100 percent right (like here) until my foundation of righteousness begins to crumble away before my very eyes, something that happens 100 percent of the time.

And it should fall apart every time, considering there are 9.2 quintillion ways the bracket could play out, according to an AP story earlier this week. Yet each March comes a chance to defy probability and it’s damn entertaining.

Sixteen games from noon to midnight Thursday, followed by 16 more games on Friday, just in case one day wasn’t enough. Then 16 more games over the weekend that usually cements your standing as a contender or a basement-dweller in your own bracket pool.

But it’s today, the true opening day, that really makes the tournament. In high school, it was almost a counter-culture celebration day for my friends and I. Other than the last day of the year, it was the best day of school after Christmas break.

CBS didn’t broadcast every game online then, about 10 years ago, and smartphones were still a few years out. But every classroom had a computer to check scores, so it became an afternoon of figuring out excuses to get online. Some teachers indulged a quick peek right before class started or right before it let out. If you had a free period you could spend in the library lab, you were set — and relaying scores to those less fortunate became your duty.

And if you were of the mind to maintain multiple brackets, those afternoons were exponentially more nerve-wracking.

In the decade since, I’ve grown up a bit, I think. I only tackle one bracket now. Too many times, I’d look at my two or three and, in my head, assemble all the best picks from the lot, thinking, “Gonzaga?! Who’s Gonzaga? Well why didn’t I just do that!”

Through some cruel twist of fate, it’s always seemed like if I crush the afternoon picks, nailing all the first eight games, the post-dinner slate strikes back. In rare years, I’ve picked 14 or 15 correctly on one of the first two days, but never that many on each of them. I’d usually settle for a one-day total of 12 or better. From 1997, with Arizona, through 2008 I only missed three national champion picks — Michigan State (2000), Duke (2001) and Florida (2006) — although that doesn’t win you any prizes.

Generally, I take too many risks with my picks. Years where multiple Cinderellas have killed off my Final Four picks have left me scarred for life. Now I usually carry two or three low seeds into the Sweet 16 — one or two too many (I’m looking at you, Bucknell, Creighton and Oregon). Then there are the teams — Georgetown may be the biggest culprit — that burn me both ways on a year-to-year basis, getting upset when I have them locked in and shredding my bracket when I don’t.

Thanks to the magic of Coppenrath and Sorrentine (see below; still get chills from that), who almost entirely sealed the deal on my college decision when their final year coincided with my freshman year, I have a bad habit of picking with my heart when Vermont, my alma mater, or Michigan, my next favorite team, is in the field.

And while Albany destroyed one half of those hopes, the other dominated my bracket. For better or worse, I’m riding the Wolverines this year. My heart is on my sleeve and my block ‘M’ is on my shirt.

Call me crazy, but I do believe I have chance.

So feel free to laugh, comment, or rub it in my face as I react to today’s action here on the blog, updating throughout the day, or on Twitter (@eadanforth) with in-the-moment thoughts.

<  <  •  •  >  >

12:40 p.m. — Yes! Got our first “Send it in!” from Bill Raftery. The origin:

1:07 p.m. — First half in the books. Michigan State: Sturdy; Appling’s switching-hands entry pass followed by the 3-pointer is the most impressive thing yet. Valpo: Doesn’t look like I have to worry about an upset here.

If Raftery wasn’t calling this one, I’d be pitching a fit that Bucknell-Butler was marooned on truTV, which I don’t get with my cable subscription. But I could listen to Raftery call just about any game. The good news, if it gets even more ugly, is that one of the few things closer to my apartment than the front door of Ramunto’s is the side door.

2:23 p.m. — One-for-one so far with Michigan State winning. Time for Bucknell to turn it on again. The Bison’s 6-foot-8 Brian Scalabrine lookalike, Joe Willman, killed Butler with baseline jumpers as they took the lead about 10 minutes ago. The Bulldogs keep grinding though…

2:48 p.m. — And now I’m 1-for-2. Rotnei Clarke and Butler showed me once again why you pick against the Bulldogs at your peril in March. File that under “should have known better.” I’m going to say that makes three times in the last four years I’ve shot myself in the foot with that one.

3:28 p.m. — I didn’t realize it before, but this afternoon session could kill my tournament picks almost singlehandedly. The three lowest seeds I picked to advance — Bucknell (11), St. Mary’s (11), Oregon (12) — all play before sundown and Belmont (11) tips off against Arizona at 7:20 p.m.

On top of that, Michigan has to face South Dakota State and its one-man-machine Nate Wolters at 7:15. That could be the most fun game to watch today, but I’m only going to have fun if Michigan wins.

5:59 p.m. — Fifty-fifty. Half of my Cinderella picks — St. Mary’s and Bucknell — are gone and I’m 3-for-6 on the day, but only after Marquette stole one from Davidson in the final minute.

I like what I’ve seen from Oregon in one half but I’m still trying to figure out what shade green the Ducks are wearing.

However there’s already one problem in my plan for the day: This tight second half between Gonzaga and Southern, combined with the 7:15 start for Michigan’s game, means I’m not getting to the gym today. Too much basketball.

6:41 p.m. — With less than 3 minutes to go, this Gonzaga-Southern game is getting really real.

9:00 p.m. — It looks like I’ll go 0-for-11-seeds today — St. Mary’s, Bucknell are already down. Belmont down by 17 in the second half.

Finished the first half of the day at 5-3, which is OK as long as I don’t do the same or worse tonight. Michigan was toying with my blood pressure in the first half and then Trey Burke went do the deck, but the Wolverines have since put the clamps down on South Dakota State. Jackrabbits are bounced.

Between Gonzaga, with John Stockton in the crowd watching his son, and Michigan, with Tim Hardaway watching his son, it feels like the NBA on NBC days from  when I actually watched the NBA in the mid-1990s.

Also on my second shift and third slice of pizza at Ramuntos today. My bare-bones cable subscription package means I can’t watch all the games online because TNT and truTV aren’t included. Frankly I liked it better two years ago when everything was broadcast regardless of what you pay for your cable service.

11:20 p.m. — I’m almost basketball’d out at this point, feeling like Akron against VCU. Havoc is officially too much for the Zips. I hope it’s not too much for Michigan on Saturday, but I’m looking forward to it. Seriously, though, with VCU up by 45, this is fierce.

Eight-of-13 right now, I’m just waiting on Missouri to come back, New Mexico (picked for the Elite 8) to get back in front and Syracuse to do its thing. Managed to tap-out after just three slices.

11:54 p.m. — My TV coverage has run out, the only games left are Syracuse-Montana and New Mexico-Harvard. It’s time for me to call it a day — not a great one, but a fun one.

Buckling up, doubling down on the best sports day of the year

My 16-year-old self would say I have a dream job today. Sixteen games, 12 hours, and I’m getting paid to watch them all — without taking a sick day. NCAA March Madness at its finest.

It’s something I haven’t gotten to do in several years. The trend had been to pick and choose, watch some that I want to, poach the dramatic climaxes of the rest. Not this time, though. This time, I’m carving out my own front-row seat for them all and sharing my (more than likely) agony as it transpires with updates here on the blog.

The games tip off in [checks top right of computer screen] 96 minutes. I polished off my bracket about 28 minutes ago (it’s top of the page). If sixth-seeded Butler knocks off No. 11 Bucknell, the swearing could start as early as 3 p.m. If it’s one of those years, I could be a puddle before the primetime games tip off.

But right now, at least, I’m a genius. Everyone is.

Nine local athletes on VBCA senior all-star rosters

Arlington’s Rayleen Sherman is one of nine local seniors that will compete in the Vermont Basketball Coaches Association all-star games on Saturday at Windsor High School.

Nine local basketball players will compete in Saturday’s VBCA senior all-star games at Windsor High School.

Division III and IV will go first, girls at 11 a.m., boys at 1 p.m.

Arlington Memorial High School senior Rayleen Sherman, one of the leaders for Larry Andrews’ Eagles this season en route to their runner-up finish in Division IV, will join the South squad.

On the boys side, Arlington’s Alex Hawley, the second-leading scorer on a team that reached the semifinals at Barre Auditorium, is part of the D-IV South team.

Then the bigger schools will go at 3 p.m. (girls) and 5 p.m. (boys) with Divisions I and II.

For the girls, two Burr and Burton Academy seniors earned roster spots, Devin Brown and Rory Halligan, two of the leaders for coach Terry Merrow’s Bulldogs.

Lacy Parmenter was chosen as well from coach Courtney Reif’s Mount Anthony Union Patriots. Parmenter was one of the leading rebounders and defensive players for MAU in 2012-13.

On the boys side, three BBA players grabbed roster spots, the most from any school on the South team. David Shehadi, Weston Muench and Jake Stalcup will represent the Bulldogs after going 21-3 and reaching the Division II title game against Vergennes.
Also, Mount Anthony leading scorer and rebounder Aaryngston Bibens will play for the South. Bibens will be athleticism and height to the team, which boasts six players 6-foot-3 or taller.

– Adam Samrov

Seeds released for Vermont state wrestling tournament

The seeds were released Wednesday for the Vermont state wrestling tournament and as usual, Mount Anthony dominates the top spot with nine wrestlers seeded first in their weight classes.

The top four in each bracket are:
106: 1. Ben Bliss (Mount Mansfield), 2. Liam Bowley (Champlain Valley), 3. Tyler Raetz (MAU), 4. Ethan Reardon (Vergennes)

113: 1. Troy Gassaway (MAU), 2. Brandon Tyson (Spaulding), 3. Austin Viens (Bellows Falls-Hartford), 4. Bryce Bernadine (MMU)

120: 1. Dylan LaFountain (MAU), 2. Cody Jolley (SPA), 3. Dominick Hahr (St. Johnsbury), 4. Alex Craige (CVU)

126: 1. Kyle Fletcher (MAU), 2. Pat Mumford (Mill River), 3. Johnathan Perreault (STJ), 4. Alex Legg (CVU)

132: 1. Miguel Calixto (MAU), 2. Steve Cerrone (BFH), 3. Dylan Hemstead (Milton), 4. James Degesse (STJ)

138: 1. Bailey Willard (MAU), 2. Zak Allen (MR), 3. Duncan Lord (SPA), 4. Patrick Libuda (BFH)

145: 1. Nolan Viens (BFH), 2. Houston Shaler (MAU), 3. Brendon Giroux (MMU), 4. Ian Reilly (Rutland)

152: 1. Dylan Shattuck (STJ), 2. Kyle Record (BFH), 3. Connor Gobielle (CVU), 4. John McCarroll (Rutland)

160: 1. Jordan Felion (Fair Haven), 2. Damon Young (MAU), 3. Connor Brown (CVU), 4. Brennan Silver (STJ)

170: 1. Tyler Mattison (MAU), 2. Kaegan Pearsall (Harwood), 3. Grant Poston (CVU), 4. Mike Wetzel (Mount Abraham)

182: 1. Austin Price (MAU), 2. Pat Pfenning (RUT), 3. TJ Simpson (Verg), 4. Jakob Troutwein (Middlebury)

195: 1. Brandon Marcoux-Schaefer (MAU), 2. Gabe LaBarge (MIDD), 3. John Sirois (MMU), 4. Nick Henry (Essex)

220: 1. Kyle Streeter (HAR), 2. Jack Luciano (MAU), 3. Tyler LaPlant (MIDD), 4. Noah MacGillivray (ESS)

285: 1. Jesse Webb (MAU), 2. Joe Ramada (ESS), 3. Michael Pierce (MMU), 4. Dylan Lorrain (Verg)

Wrestling begins Friday at Vergennes High School at 4 p.m. and starts again on Saturday at 9:30 a.m. The semifinals are scheduled to start Saturday at 11:15 a.m. and the finals are set for 6:15 p.m.

The second season begins in N.Y.

Three of the four New York state basketball teams learned their playoff fate on Tuesday as Section II hosted the seeding meetings for both the boys and girls.


Hoosick Falls (9-9) was part of a gaggle of teams right around .500 in Class C and earned the 11th seed. They’ll travel to a familiar opponent in Mechanicville, the No. 6 seed, in a finals rematch from a year ago on Tuesday.

“Nine teams in the C’s were either 10-8 or 9-9, so our loss to MAU on Tuesday had a big effect on our seed,” said Hoosick coach Mike Lilac. “One of the 10-8 teams even has a home game.”

Despite being a familiar opponent, the teams are decidedly different. The Panthers have only one player from that game who had any significant minutes, while the Red Raiders have four, Lilac said.

“They play in a tough league (the Colonial Council), but it’s definitely a winnable game for us,” Lilac said. “We’re going to show up and try to knock them off.”

The winner will take on the winner of No. 3 Greenwich and the play-in between Hadley-Luzerne and Mayfield.

After a tough season that ended up winless, the Cambridge boys got the 18th seed and a play-in game against Saratoga Catholic from the Western Athletic Conference.

“Once you get toward the bottom seeds, you want to avoid any conference matchups, so we put Cambridge and Hadley-Luzerne where they are to do that,” said Lilac, the Section II boys basketball chairman.

Saratoga Catholic also finished 9-9 on the season. The Cambridge-Spa Catholic winner moves on to face Lake George at Shenendehowa High School on Feb. 23.

Hoosic Valley is the top seed in the boys tournament.


Hoosick Falls, WHICH finished the season Wednesday night with a 12-6 record, is the No. 4 seed in the Class C bracket and faces the winner of a play-in game between Voorheesville and Mayfield.

“As I told the girls, we have a really talented team and I believe we can win the section,” said Hoosick Falls coach Eamonn DeGraaf. “But what do they believe? Do they believe it? If we can play for four quarters, we can beat anyone in Class C, I just have to get that through to my players.”

The Panthers are led by Frankie Pearson, who is averaging nearly 17 points per game in her final season with Hoosick Falls.

The winner of Tuesday’s game takes on the winner of No. 5 Duanesburg and the play-in winner of Galway and Spa Catholic.

Hoosic Valley is the top seed in the girls tournament.

The Cambridge girls, finishing the year 2-16, decided not to get into the open tournament.

Section II wrestling this Sunday

Hoosick Falls junior Luis Weierbach is undefeated this season and is aiming for his third straight sectional title on Sunday.

For the first time in tournament history, the Section II wrestling sectional tournament was postponed due to the winter storm barreling into the Northeast. The two-day event has been moved from the Glens Falls Civic Center to Queensbury High School on Sunday and turned it into a one-day tournament, one that will test the wrestlers’ grit and patience.

After a runner-up finish last season, the Hoosick Falls Central School wrestling team has 11 competitors heading to QHS. With six Class C champions, Hoosick Falls has a good chance to climb up the podium.

The sectional committee released the seedings earlier this week and nine Panthers are named. The only top seed is 106-pounder Luis Weierbach, who is undefeated at 30-0 this season and squarely aims at his third straight sectional crown. Seeded second in his bracket is Galway’s Nico Riccio, who Weierbach pinned in less than a minute in the finals of the Class C tournament.

The Panthers have two No. 2 seeds in 182-pound senior Brad Burns and 132-pound sophomore Colby Davendonis. Burns, at 31-3 heading into sectionals, is seeded by Salem’s Tyler Morris. Morris has been one of the top wrestlers this year for Coach Frank Fronhofer’s Generals.

The 132-pound class is up for grabs after some shocking developments at the C tournament. Galway’s Jay Oakes, the top seed, was injured in the semifinals and was forced to default. He finished sixth, not qualifying for sectionals.

The second seed, Mechanicville’s Adam Erno, lost to Corinth’s Ryan Matuszak in the semifinal, then lost to Davendonis in the wrestlebacks, placing fifth. Albany Academy’s Sam DeLarge is the top seed, with Davendonis next and Matuszak third.

Much of the Panthers’ strength comes from the middleweights and three are seeded 3rd for sectionals — Bryan Sherman at 152, Garrett Wright at 160 and Billy Pine. Sherman won the Class C title on the home mats and faces a brutal weight class as all four qualifiers are seeded for Sunday’s sectional. Wright, who upset a 31-3 Brad Perry from Granville to win the C’s, is also in a tough weight class as all four qualifiers are seeded 3rd, 4th, 6th and 7th.

Pine is seeded behind Cobleskill-Richmondville’s Mike Green, who reached the state tournament at 170 last year and Hudson Falls’ Geno Brancati was a sectional champion at 145 last season.

Other seeded Panthers are Mike Matatt, 7th at 138; Nolan Foster, 8th at 113 and Tyler Randall, 8th at 126. Unseeded Hoosick Falls wrestlers are Shane Barss at 195 and Nick Schrom at 120.

Cambridge has one competitor heading to sectionals in junior Nate Winchester at 220 pounds. Winchester, a finalist at the Class D sectionals last week, is seeded 8th in his weight class. The top seed is Berne-Knox-Westerlo’s Joe Sprung, the winner of the Ken Baker Classic two weekends ago.

BBA, U-32 streak into high-profile Lake Division rematch

With 14 goals and eight assists, Brock Pollard, left, leads the Burr and Burton Academy boys hockey team in scoring as the Bulldogs head into Wednesday night’s Lake Division clash with U-32. (Photo: Austin Danforth)

Two of the Vermont’s hottest high school boys hockey teams collide Wednesday night at Riley Rink when Burr and Burton Academy (11-3) hosts U-32 (13-1) in a Lake Division showdown at 5:45 p.m.

The Bulldogs, ranked fourth in the division through Tuesday, have won 10 straight games since an early-season skid.

The defending state champion Raiders, currently sitting atop the VPA standings, have won every game they’ve played since suffering a seesaw, 6-4 defeat to BBA in the season-opener.

“They’re the real deal,” BBA coach Cory Herrington said of U-32. “They’ve got a lot of depth and a lot of speed.”

Only 2012 state runner-up Northfield (11-2-1), which has won its last 11 games, can match their momentum at this point in the season. And Northfield could be right there at the end of the season, too. The Marauders, No. 2 in the league table, travel to Burr and Burton on Feb. 20 and head to U-32 three days later.

U-32, breaking in a pair of new goaltenders, appears to have hit its stride since giving up a season-high six goals to BBA on home ice back on Dec. 8.

The Raiders, with three 10-goal games to their credit, are scoring at a clip of 6.2 goals per game against a 1.8 goals against average. Senior forward Jordan Jones leads the attack with 18 goals and 12 assists on the season. Defenseman Shane O’Neill has 14 goals and 11 assists in his account, while Cole Mugford has notched nine goals and 23 assists.

Herrington said the Raiders, who knocked out the Bulldogs in the state semifinals last spring, are solid all-around, with effective special teams play and a demanding forecheck.

“We’ve got to get to the net, get pucks on the net and play a complete game,” Herrington said. “We can’t afford any turnovers on the blue line.”

Like the Raiders, Burr and Burton has also rallied since its last loss, a 5-4 setback against Hartford on Dec. 28.

Behind a trio of game-breaking senior forwards, the Bulldogs’ offense has averaged 3.9 goals per game. Brock Pollard and Sean Paradis each have 14 goals, with Pollard’s eight assists edging Paradis by one. Henry Buckley has eight goals to go along with four assists.

Senior goaltender Zack Stewart (2.2 GAA) has allowed just three goals in the past six games, which include a 4-1 win against third-ranked Brattleboro (11-3).