The Brattleboro Colonels girls’ soccer team is starting to come together, but coach Edwin de Bruijn never imagined his players scoring eight goals in a game.
But they did, in an 8-0 demolition of the Springfield Cosmos last Friday night at Tenney Field.
Both teams entered the game having previously won their first games of the season. Brattleboro picked up a 5-2 victory over Springfield on Sept. 12 in the consolation game of the Lady Patriot Tournament in Bennington, while the Cosmos blanked Bellows Falls, 4-0, on Sept. 14 as Jenna Veysey and Lina Geyer scored two goals each.
If you were expecting an evenly-matched game, you would have been disappointed. Brattleboro controlled the game throughout. In the first half, they put 19 shots on goal, but only came away with two goals. Midfielder Kai Boyd scored in the 16th minute, and forward Danielle Wood scored near the end of the half.
“Springfield packed the middle of the field on defense, so it was hard to get our offense going,” said de Bruijn. “But we were passing the ball well and getting lots of chances.”
The Colonels had 12 shots in the second half, but six of them found the back of the net. Midfielder Jamie Mahoney started the scoring avalanche in the 44th minute.
“Once we got that third goal, they kind of gave up,” said de Bruijn. “Burr & Burton did the same thing to us (a 7-0 loss for the Colonels in the season-opener), so we know what it’s like.”
The Cosmos gamely fought on, but by the 57th minute, things fell apart completely as the Colonels would score five goals in a span of seven minutes. Wood got her second, midfielder Devin Millerick followed with a goal two minutes later, then Wood scored three more times as she was the recipient of a combination of defensive breakdowns and fortuitous bounces.
“They weren’t pretty goals, but we’ll take them,” said de Bruijn. “I like to tell the girls that we do our homework in practice and game day is test day.”
The Colonels certainly aced this particular test. Now 2-1, the Colonels will face tougher games, but a foundation is slowly being built for a good season.
• Brattleboro was faced with a must-win game when it traveled to Middlebury to face the Tigers in a Division I match-up last Friday night.
Their chances didn’t look good. The winless Colonels were facing a 2-0 team that had won its previous 28 regular season home games, and Brattleboro hadn’t beaten Middlebury in 11 years.
But the Colonels flipped the script in a big way, using defense and a smashmouth running game to score 28 unanswered points in the second half to win, 28-13.
Tailback Cheick Diakite led the way with 230 yards and three touchdowns on 30 carries. Together with fullback Kolton Ravenna, who ran for 54 yards, the Colonels beat up the Tigers with a pair of long scoring drives in the second half.
Quarterback Tony Martinez did not attempt a pass in the final two quarters. He didn’t need to, as Diakite and Ravenna ran the ball and physically punished any Tigers who tried to tackle them.
Conor Hiner got Brattleboro’s other touchdown when he ran back an interception for a 25-yard score in the third quarter. Brattleboro’s defense, which gave up 69 points in its first two games, forced five turnovers, including a pair of interceptions and a fumble recovery by Matt Gaboriault. Kicker Jack Price converted all four of his extra point attempts.
Brattleboro trailed 7-0 at the half, but the Colonels’ defense stopped the Tigers cold on their first possession of the second half. The Colonels then went on a 10-play, 59-yard scoring drive to tie the game with 4:43 left in the third quarter.
Middlebury was thwarted on its next drive with Hiner’s pick-six, and was stymied yet again with Gaboriault’s second interception of the night. The Colonels then went on a long, clock-eating 13-play, 96-yard scoring drive capped off by a 27-yard touchdown run by Diakite for a 21-7 lead with 5:05 left in game.
Diakite then got his third touchdown on a 29-yard run on the Colonels’ next possession.
The 1-2 Colonels take on South Burlington in the homecoming game on Saturday at 3 p.m. at Natowich Field.
• Bellows Falls improved to 3-0 on the season with a 49-13 win over North Country last Friday night at Hadley Field.
Tailback Jahyde Bullard carried the ball 13 times for 153 yards and two touchdowns, including a 73-yard touchdown run to start the third quarter.
Quarterback Caleb Lisai had a 6-for-8 passing night for 105 yards and a touchdown pass, a 54-yarder in the second quarter to tight end Jacob Streeter.
BF took a 35-7 lead at the half as running backs Shane Clark and Logan Cota each had 7-yard touchdown runs in the first quarter. Fullback Jacob Lober started the second quarter with a 1-yard plunge for a touchdown, Bullard got his first score on a 9-yard run, and the TD pass to Streeter made it 35-0 with 33 seconds left in the half.
North Country’s Ethan Sarault spoiled the shutout bid with a 63-yard kickoff return for a touchdown on the ensuing kickoff, but it was too little, too late for the Falcons. Bullard and Lober each scored on touchdown runs in the third quarter before the first string called it a night.
The 3-0 Terriers host Mount Mansfield this Saturday.
• Skyler Boyd got both goals as Twin Valley shut out Leland & Gray, 2-0, in Townshend on Tuesday. TJ Felisko got the assist on the first goal, while the other came off a penalty kick.
Logan Boyd made six saves to earn the shutout for the 4-0 Wildcats. Leland & Gray goalkeeper Luc Dugrenier made 14 saves as the Rebels fell to 1-2-1.
• Brattleboro rallied back from a two-goal deficit to beat Springfield, 5-2, on Sept. 12. The Colonels got three goals to close out the first half, then got two more in the second half.
• Bellows Falls got shut out by Green Mountain, 7-0, in the opening game of the Josh Cole Tournament in Ludlow last Friday night. Mack Walton had three goals and three assists to lead the Chieftains. Justin Diak added three more goals.
• Ashley Bates scored twice and Rachel Borgesen added another goal to lead Leland & Gray to a 3-2 victory over Twin Valley at Hayford Field in Wilmington on Sept. 13.
For Twin Valley, it was the second straight one-goal loss at the hands of the Rebels. Karlee Walkowiak and Caitlin Hunt were the goal scorers for Twin Valley, with assists credited to Hunt and Kassidy Walkowiak.
• Otter Valley scored four goals in the first 19 minutes as they beat Bellows Falls, 7-1, last Friday. Keri Ticino scored the Terriers’ only goal in the second half, set up by a direct kick by Zoe Schemm. BF is now 0-5.
• Brattleboro is still looking for its first win of the season. On Sept. 13 in Bennington, the Colonels fell 2-0 to Mount Anthony. It was the Patriots’ first win of the season.
Mount Anthony had plenty of scoring chances, with 22 penalty corners to Brattleboro’s three. Alex Cross got the Patriots’ first goal two minutes into the game, while Whitten Coyne got an insurance goal eight minutes into the second half. Brattleboro goalie Natayla Forkin made eight saves to keep the game from getting out of hand.
Patriots goalie Savannah Rogers needed to make just one save to earn the shutout win.
• Bellows Falls crushed Burr & Burton, 5-0, on Sept. 13. Abbe Cravinho scored the BF first goal with five minutes left in the first half, then scored four goals in the second half.
Reaghan Baldsaro started things off with a goal three minutes into the second half, Cravinho scored five minutes later, and Sophie Hyslop finished off the Bulldogs with a pair of goals just 16 seconds apart in the final 90 seconds of regulation time.
• The Brattleboro girls’ were winners at a Marble Valley League meet on the Bellows Falls Union High School course in Westminster on Sept. 13. Eleven schools were represented in the meet, with nine complete teams on the boys’ race and seven teams in the girls’ race.
Brattleboro was led by Sarah Gallagher in fourth place, Elery Loggia in 10th, Liz Morse in 11th, Annie Takacs in 12th, and Emilia Dick-Fioro del Fabro in 13th. Lia Clark placed 13th overall for the Bellows Falls girls.
In the boys race, Stratton Mountain won, Brattleboro was second and BF came in third. Brattleboro’s Isaac Freitas-Eagan finished first, covering the third-mile course in 17 minutes flat. Also scoring for the Colonels were Colin Costa-Walsh (seventh), Spencer Loggia (eighth), Trevor Kipp (17th), and Logan Makay (52nd).
Cody Tallent (10th in 18:15), Nic Potter (12th), Ian Wallace (15th), and Tim Salter-Roy (18th) and Jackson Purdy (19th) all were top 20 finishers for the Terriers.
And a bit of history was made in the boys’ race. Stephen Borst, a ninth-grader at St. Michael’s School who trains and races alongside the BUHS runners, ran his first high school race and finished 39th in 22 minutes, 26 seconds.
Borst was the first athlete to compete in the blue and white colors of the St. Michael’s Saints in varsity competition since 1968, when the high school closed its doors due to falling enrollment.
St. Michael’s got approval from the Diocese of Burlington to reopen the old high school in 2015. The K-8 parochial school on Walnut Street added a ninth-grade class for the 2015-16 school year, with the intent of filling all the grades and graduating its first high school class in 2019.
Dana wins silver medal at Paralympics
• Two-time Paralympian Alicia Dana of Putney won a silver medal on Sept. 14 for hand cycling in the women’s time trial at the Summer Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
Dana’s time of 33:57.48 was about a tenth of a second behind gold medalist Karen Darke of Great Britain. She was the only American in the race, which featured 11 competitors, and it was a big improvement upon her fifth place finish in the same event in London in 2012.
This was Dana’s first Paralympic medal in her second Paralympic games.
She sought a second medal on Sept. 15, when she raced in the women’s H1-2-3-4 road race, but finished fourth in the women’s handcycle road race. Dana barely missed out on a medal, as the top four finishers were separated by just five-tenths of a second.
Germany’s Christiane Reppe won the gold with a time of 1 hour, 15 minutes, and 56 seconds. Doyeon Lee of South Korea took silver ahead of Francesca Porcellato of Italy, although both posted identical times of 1:15:58. Dana was fourth in 1:16:01.
Senior bowling roundup
• Week 5 of the fall season of the Brattleboro Senior Bowling League saw Team 5 (12-3) take over first place, with Team 3 (10-5) in second and Team 7 and Team 4 tied for third with 9-6 records. Team 2 (7-8) is in fourth place, followed by a three-way tie for fifth, with Team 6, Team 9, and Team 10 with identical 6-9 records. Team 1 and Team 8 are tied for sixth at 5-10.
Team 7 had the high handicap game (954) and series (2,623). Virginia Kenney had the women’s high handicap game (263), while Edna Fletcher had high handicap series (690) and Doug Switzer had the men’s high handicap game (262) and high handicap series (701).
Switzer (222), Marty Adams (218), Warren Corriveau Sr. (213), and Peter Cross (204) all had 200-plus games.
Two women and four men rolled a 500-plus series: Adams (584), Jerry Dunham (547), Corriveau (546), Cross (537). Shirley Aiken (528), Switzer (521), Peter Gilbert (501), and Sonya Shippee (500).