The Bellows Falls girls’ basketball team has a 12-4 record, but the Terriers will likely not get a home playoff game when the Division II tournament starts next week.
I wrote about BF’s conundrum a few weeks ago, and little has changed since then.
Only two of their wins have come against a Division II opponent (Woodstock, twice), while two of their losses have come against Division II rival Springfield. The other two losses were against two of the best teams in Division III — Windsor and Green Mountain.
Now in ninth place, BF needs the teams ahead of them in the standings to lose a game or two, and the Terriers need to finish the regular season with a win streak.
BF took care of the winning part with a 56-32 win over Leland & Gray in Townshend on Feb. 14.
Coach Todd Wells, who was battling a severe cold, said after the game that his players “were working on our man[-to-man] defense. We still need to tighten that up a bit. We will probably end up on the road in the playoffs and we haven’t shot that well on the road this season, so we will be counting on our defense.”
BF held the Rebels to just 15 first-half points, then finished them off with a 13-3 run to start the second half. Taylor Goodell led the Terrier scorers with 18 points, including two three-pointers.
Halle Dickerson scored all nine of her points in the second half for BF, while Molly Kelly chipped in eight and Abbe Cravinho added seven. “Someone different steps up for us every game,” said Wells.
Sierra Fillion led the 3-15 Rebels with nine points, and Sydney Hescock scored all of her six points in the final quarter.
• Earlier in the week, Leland & Gray lost to Twin Valley in overtime, 25-24, on Feb. 11 in Whitingham. Katelyn Longe (six points) and Sadie Boyd (three points) each had 13 rebounds for the Wildcats, while Jarrett Niles added five points.
Fillion scored a game-high eight points for the Rebels, while Bates chipped in five points.
• Twin Valley lost to visiting Proctor, 39-26, on Feb. 16. Longe had nine points, eight rebounds, and four steals to lead the 4-14 Wildcats, while Niles added eight points and three steals.
• Brattleboro finished the week at 9-9. It was a confounding week that started with the Colonels getting swept in a home-and-home series with Mount Anthony, and ended with an upset on the road against Rutland.
MAU earned a sweep of the season series with Brattleboro with a 58-29 win in Bennington on Feb. 13. Grace Mahar was the difference-maker for the Patriots, with 23 points (20 of them in the first half), 16 rebounds, and six assists.
The Patriots’ defense smothered the Colonels’ top scorers, Rachael Rooney and Hailey Derosia, holding them to seven and six points, respectively.
MAU turned in a similar defensive effort on Feb. 11 at the BUHS gym when the Patriots beat the Colonels, 42-35. The Patriots held the Colonels to just two points in the second quarter while hitting seven three-pointers.
Alyssa Scherlin led the Colonels with 14 points, while Rooney added seven points and Derosia had six points, seven steals, and three blocked shots. Mahar was MAU’s top scorer with 17.
Against Rutland on Feb. 16, the Colonels turned in a stellar defensive effort in a 40-29 win.
The Colonels led 18-8 at the half and used their dominance on the boards with a balanced scoring attack to keep the Raiders in check and complete a sweep of the season series.
Natalie Hendricks led the Colonels with nine points. Derosia filled up the stat sheet with eight points, six rebounds, six assists, and four steals. Scherlin had six points and eight rebounds, while Lauren McKenney had six points and six rebounds and Lauryn Sargent scored five points and pulled down seven rebounds.
Elise Magro led the 12-6 Raiders with nine points. The Colonels are currently ranked 10th in Division I and, like BF, need to win their last two games and hope for losses by the nine teams ahead of them if they want a shot at a home playoff game.
• Trailing by six points heading into the final quarter, Brattleboro exploded for 25 points as the Colonels rallied to beat Burr & Burton, 54-46, at the BUHS Gym on Feb. 15.
Three players scored in double figures for Brattleboro in the winning effort. Tyler Millerick led the way with 15 points, Adam Newton scored 14 points, and Hunter Beebe finished with 13. Beebe, Jack Price, and Charlie Galanes also were dominant on the boards.
Patrick Forstmann led BBA with 18 points, while Jake Nicholson added 11 points.
On Feb. 11, Newton scored 16 points to power the Colonels to a 58-43 win over Mount Anthony in Bennington.
The Colonels were in front the entire way, however the Patriots got to within seven points in the final quarter. A Beebe layup and a three-pointer from Newton gave Brattleboro some breathing room.
Beebe finished with 13 points, Galanes chipped in 12 points, and Tyler Millerick added nine for the 10-6 Colonels, who finished the week with the No. 7 ranking in Division I and have a good chance of hosting a first-round playoff game.
• Leland & Gray dropped three home games last week. They fell to Proctor, 66-39, on Feb. 11. Matt Emerson scored eight points to lead the Rebels, while Lucas Newton and Matt Dunn each added six points.
On Feb. 13, the Rebels lost to Poultney, 54-39, and on Feb. 15, Green Mountain was a 51-39 winner in the annual Hoops for Hope game.
The Rebels, now 3-11, are on a seven-game losing streak. Interestingly, the Rebels scored 39 points in each of the last four losses.
• Bellows Falls beat Springfield, 69-45, in a road game on Feb. 15. The Terriers are 6-8, and can move up in the Division II standings with a strong finish.
• In a showdown of two top teams in Division IV, Proctor came away with a 49-35 win over Twin Valley in Whitingham on Feb. 16. The Wildcats, now 10-5, are tied with Poultney for third in the division rankings.
• Mount Anthony and Brattleboro finished first and second, respectively, in both the boys’ and girls’ classic races in the second leg of the Marble Valley League championships at the Wild Wings Ski Touring Center in Peru on Feb. 13.
Conditions were just about perfect, following a snowstorm the day before, and the Colonels made the most of it. On the girls’ side, Brattleboro’s Sarah Gallagher finished first, covering the 5-kilometer course in 18 minutes, 18 seconds.
Liz Morse and Bella Takacs tied for seventh and Angelika Toomey came in ninth to give the Colonel girls a total of 24 points, six points behind MAU’s winning score of 18.
In the boys’ race, Henry Thurber came in third for the Colonels. Evan Koch was fifth and Galen Fletcher and Nolan Holmes tied for seventh to give Brattleboro a score of 22, five points behind MAU’s winning score of 17.
The MVL championships conclude with a relay event, set for Feb. 20, at 11 a.m., at the Brattleboro Country Club.
• The Brattleboro girls clinched a playoff spot as they rallied to beat U-32, 2-1, on Feb. 13 at Withington Rink.
Juliana Miskovich scored the game-winning goal from Edie Cay. Tobin Lonergan also scored for Brattleboro, and goalie Eliya Petrie made 24 saves.
On Feb 16, the Colonel girls lost at home to Stowe, 3-2, to fall to 5-10-1.
• The Brattleboro boys lost to Burr & Burton, 3-2, in Manchester on Feb. 13. Ernie Antonucci and Gavin Howard were the goalscorers for the Colonels; Ryan Gerald and Howard each were credited with an assist.
On Feb. 16, Antonucci had a goal and an assist in Brattleboro’s 6-3 road loss to Mount Mansfield. Howard and Nathan Powers also scored for the Colonels, and Mason Foard added an assist.
Brattleboro finished the week at 5-7-4, and are ranked seventh in Division II.
Brattleboro Storm sends 8 players to Olympic development teams
• The Brattleboro Youth Soccer Association (a.k.a. Brattleboro Storm) has been operating its club program in Southeastern Vermont for over 20 years, and it recently had some good news to share.
Eight of the Storm’s players have been selected for the 2019 US Youth Soccer Olympic Development Program (ODP) State teams for Vermont and Massachusetts, a number up 400 percent from last year.
Each year, the Storm routinely fields teams for both boys and girls in the U-9 to U-14 age range in regular spring and fall leagues, and U-18 spring-only teams as to not conflict with local high school teams.
During November through March, the Storm helps to organize teams under the dome in Greenfield, Mass., at Indoor Action Sports over three sessions to maintain skill growth over the long New England winters.
This year’s players selected to join the 2019 ODP State team pools include Ozmond Z. VanHendrick of Brookline, Vt., who’ll be on the Massachustts U-13 team. The Vermont U-14 team will have Sam Hall, Charlie Kinnersley, and Ayoub Lajhar of Brattleboro; Henry Pennell and William Noble of Rockingham; Paul McGillion of Dummerston; and Emilio Ogden of Westminster
Each ODP State team practices over the coming months in preparation for the annual U.S. East Region tournament held this year at Rider University in Lawrenceville, N.J., and follow-up training camp at Kutztown University in Pennsylvania.
The tournament and training camp serve to identify players to move onto the U.S. East Region pool and U.S. National/International tournament teams. During last year’s 2018 session two Storm players were selected for ODP, Pennell and Noble. Both attended US East Region events in Delaware and Pennsylvania.
Noble was further selected as one of the goalkeepers for the U.S. East and travels next month with the U.S. East Region team to Williamsburg, Va.. where they will compete in the Virginia Friendlies Tournament on Feb. 22-24.
Dummerston has perfect season, again
• The Dummerston School Wildcats’ basketball team finished undefeated in the Connecticut Valley League and won the conference championship on Feb. 9, beating Walpole, N.H. 59-40.
The team is comprised of all eighth-graders and they also won the Connecticut Valley League title in soccer last fall as well (also undefeated). They hope to parlay their success with another undefeated season in baseball in the spring.
Senior bowling roundup
• Team 4 (28-7) remains in first place still after Week 7 of the winter season of the Brattleboro Senior Bowling League at Brattleboro Bowl.
Team 10 (24-11) moved into second place while Team 7 and Team 3 (both 22-13) are tied for third. Team 11 (21-14) is in fourth place, followed by Team 2 (19-16), Team 3 and Team 9 (both 18-17), Team 8 (11-24), Team 6 (10-25), Team 12 (9-26), and Team 1 (8-27).
Shirley Aiken had the women’s high handicap game (244), while Josie Rigby had the high handicap series (690). Jerry Dunham had the men’s high handicap game (257), while Fred Bump had the high handicap series (694). Team 10 had the high team handicap game (909) and series (2,538).
In scratch scoring, Josie Rigby rolled a 227, 218 and a 209 as part of her 654 series. Dunham (571), Robert Rigby (550) and Peter Cross (536) all had 500-plus series. Dunham (222), Robert Rigby (216), and Cross (202) also rolled 200-plus games, while Shirley Aiken had a 186.