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Randolph T. Holhut/The Commons

Bellows Falls baserunner Alanah McAllister slides safely home as Mill River catcher Sheyla Tarbell can’t corral the ball during the second inning of their softball game on April 16 in Westminster. Watching the play is umpire Howie Paul.

Sports

Colonels baseball, softball open season with wins

Colonels baseball, softball open season with wins

Randolph T. Holhut, deputy editor of this newspaper, has written this column for more than a decade and has covered sports in Windham County since the 1980s. Readers can send him sports information at news@commonsnews.org.

We may be a month into calendar spring, but an April afternoon in Vermont can range from 70 degrees with blue skies and sunshine, to the mid-30s with snow flurries and a cold north wind, to a foot or two of snow and sleet.

For the baseball opener between Bellows Falls and Brattleboro at Tenney Field on April 14, we missed the blizzard, but had a combination of the other two extremes. A sunny and warm afternoon gave way to a quick moving thunderstorm which then gave way to light rain and a cold wind by game’s end.

But while the weather was less than optimal, the Colonels were unfazed by an hourlong weather delay or having to play the game under the lights as they shut down the Terriers, 11-1, in a game stopped in the bottom of the sixth inning by the 10-run mercy rule.

Alex “Moose” Bingham threw a no-hitter, with eight strikeouts, two walks, and one batter hit by a pitch. Bingham also got a solid effort from his defense, with BF’s only run coming on a throwing error in the fourth inning.

“Alex had great command,” said Colonels coach Chris Groeger. “He pitched very well for us,"

Bingham needed his good stuff, because the Terriers kept the game close for the first three innings. Losing pitcher Jack Cravinho went 4 1/3 innings with six walks and two strikeouts and two hit batters. Brattleboro got a run in the first on an infield hit by Willem Thurber, and scored another in the third on a three-base error on a ball hit by Reed Sargent.

Then the Colonels scored four runs in the fourth inning, aided by a pair of BF errors. A throwing error on a bunt by Jackson Emery scored Bingham, who reached on an error, and Tucker Sargent, who was hit by a pitch. Emery later scored on a wild pitch, and a Zinabu McNiece groundout scored another run to make a 6-1 game.

Jess Derrell, Jamison Nystrom and Eli Allbee all pitched in relief of Cravinho, but the Colonels put an early end to the proceedings with five runs in the sixth inning. Thurber, Alex Carpenter, and Bingham each had an RBI single, and after pinch-hitter Aaron Slade drew a walk, Jolie Glidden sent everyone home with a two-run double just as a light rain turned into a steady shower.

For BF coach Bob Lockerby, it was a frustrating loss. “Five of the nine guys I had on the field were playing their first varsity game,” he said. “I thought Jack pitched well, but we didn’t play well enough on defense to back him up.

The 1-0 Colonels will have a tougher test on April 20 when they take on Keene, N.H. at Alumni Field.

Softball

• Bellows Falls had a rough season last year. They dealt with the loss of Jada Spaulding, who died in an auto accident last April, and finished 7-10.

But it is a new season for the Terriers, and while coach Donald Laurendeau has a team full of ninth- and 10th-graders, senior captains Grace Wilkinson and Savannah Sylvester and junior catcher Jenna Dolloph will provide the leadership needed to be a contender.

Wilkinson, Sylvester, and Dolloph all hit above .400 last season, and the trio keyed a 29-4 demolition of Mill River in the Terriers’ home opener on April 16. The game was stopped after three innings when Mill River coach Mary Colvin decided it was best for her players to withdraw and fight another day.

Mill River had a 2-0 lead after one inning when Karina Mozzer walked and Alexis Wilson singled. Both scored. BF responded in the bottom half of the inning with seven runs that came on a pair of passed balls, a throwing error, and a pair of fielding errors.

The BF lead was cut to 7-4 in the second inning as the Terriers committed a a pair of fielding errors. However, the Terriers took care of business, and then some, in the bottom half of the second. Bellows Falls sent 21 batters to the plate and scored 17 runs. Losing pitcher Alexis Secoy walked four, hit one batter, and gave up 10 hits in the inning. Three runs scored on passed balls and there were three errors.

Every Terrier chipped in with the scoring in the second inning. Wilkinson scored three runs as she walked, singled, doubled and drove in two runs. Aliya Farmer walked, hit two doubles, drove in three runs and scored two runs.

Natalie Noyes had a pair of RBI singles and scored two runs. Alanah McAllister singled, doubled, and drove in a run. Olivia Rebetz got a run in with a sacrifice fly. Phaedra Cilibrasi walked, singled, and scored two runs.

Winning pitcher Izzy Stoodley helped her cause by scoring a run after being hit by a pitch, and Dolloph walked, hit an RBI single, and scored two runs. Sylvester scored two runs and hit an RBI single.

After a 1-2-3 inning by Mill River in the top of the third, BF scored five more runs in the bottom half of the inning. Dolloph drove in a run on a fielders’ choice, Wilkinson hit a three-run triple and Noyes had an RBI single.

Laurendeau could relate to why Colvin pulled the plug on this game. “We’ve been the receiving end of games like this,” he said. “You’ve got to make the routine play. Do that, and barrel up the ball when you swing the bat, and you’ve got a shot at winning. We did that today.”

• It was the second mercy rule loss of the season for Mill River. On April 12, Leland & Gray opened its season in North Clarendon with an 18-3 win over Mill River in a five-inning game.

Rebels pitcher Mary Sanderson allowed just two hits, one apiece to Mill River’s Casey Patch and Kate Haskins, and struck out four in four innings of work to get the win. Secoy, the losing pitcher, gave up 10 hits, walked eight, and struck out three.

West Rutland then mercy-ruled the Rebels in a 17-5 win in five innings on April 14 in Townshend. Leland & Gray ended its week at 1-1.

• In the season opener against Springfield on April 12 at Sawyer Field, Brattleboro pitcher Leah Madore picked up where she left off last year. The senior struck out 16 and walked two in throwing a one-hit shutout as the Colonels blanked the Cosmos, 9-0.

Cynthia Velazquez went 3-for-3 and drove in two runs to lead the Colonels’ offense, while Taylin Bauer had a hit and drove in two runs. Aliza Speno, Brenna Beebe, and Madore had one hit each.

Baseball

• Leland & Gray rolled to a 22-1 win over Mill River in their season opener on April 12 in North Clarendon. It was also the first win for the Rebels’ new coach, Marty Rancourt. Parker Richardson and Cody Hescock split the pitching duties for the Rebels.

Against White River Valley on April 14, the Rebels lost their home opener, 11-5, to even their record at 1-1.

Lacrosse

• The Brattleboro girls opened the season with a pair of road losses. They traveled to Hoosick Falls, N.Y., on April 8, and were defeated 20-15 in the season opener. Sophia Mikijaniec, Willow Romo, Juliana Miskovich, and Ally Foard were the goal scorers for the Colonels, and goalie Raina Armour-Jones finished with 11 saves.

On April 11 in Northampton, Mass., the Colonels came away with a 17-8 loss. Miskovich had five goals, while Mikijaniec scored two goals and Romo added another.

• Ten different Burr & Burton players scored goals as the undefeated Bulldogs cruised to a 17-1 win over the visiting Brattleboro boys squad on April 12. Brattleboro goalie Thad Sawyer had 10 saves in the loss.

Things didn’t get much better on April 16 in Rutland, as the Raiders rolled to a 16-1 win over the Colonels. Rutland had given up 29 goals in their first two games, but the Raiders opened with 13 unanswered goals before Brattleboro sophomore attacker Wyatt Cudworth scored with a minute left in the third quarter.

Track & Field

• The Brattleboro boys and the Bellows Falls girls were the winners in a multi-team meet at Hadley Field on April 13.

Brattleboro won the boys’ meet with 149 points, just ahead of Bellows Falls with 126. Hartford was third with 102, followed by Green Mountain (82), White River Valley (31), and Twin Valley (1).

Bellows Falls racked up 155 points to win the girls’ meet. White River Valley was second with 113, followed by Brattleboro (105), Green Mountain (78), and Hartford (41).

Tenzin Mathes led the Colonel boys with wins in the 1,500 and 3,000 meter runs. Magnus von Krusenstiern (400 meters) and the 4x100 relay team of Tristan Evans, Jacob Girard, Sean von Ranson and Finn Lamorder also finished first in their events. Isabella Lonardo (300 meter hurdles), Ava Whitney (high jump), and Sylvie Normandeau (pole vault) were winners for the Colonel girls.

Owen LaRoss took the shot put and discus, while Stephanie Ager won the 800 and 1,500 meter runs for the Terrier teams. Harrison and Hadley Gleim each won their respective 100 meter dashes, while Mack Ross finished first in the 300 meter hurdles and Breanna Stockman was first in the javelin.

Grace Tyrell led Green Mountain with wins in the 100, 200, and 400 meter events, while her teammate Berkley Hutchins was first in the shot put and discus and was part of a five-way tie for first in the high jump, along with Whitney and BF’s Eryn Ross.

Tennis

• The Brattleboro boys lost a makeup match with Northampton, Mass., 4-3, on April 11 at the BUHS courts. Nathan Kim and Ty Smith easily won their respective singles matches for the Colonel boys. The other Colonel win came via forfeit.

• The Bellows Falls girls opened their season on April 11 with a 7-0 road loss to Rutland. The closest match of the day came at No. 3 singles as Anna Gallipo needed a tiebreaker to defeat BF’s Ariana Wunderle 6-0, 2-6, 10-8.

Rec. Dept. hosts Super Fun Bike Day

• The Brattleboro Recreation & Parks Department will host a Super Fun Bike Day at the Nelson Withington Skating Facility at Living Memorial Park on Saturday, April 23, in cooperation with the Brattleboro Kiwanis Club, the Brattleboro police and fire departments, and Rescue Inc.

This program will run from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., and will feature a helmet fitting, safety information, a bike rodeo and course, and bike tune-ups. Helmets will be available for $5 for those under 18 years old, and $10 for those 18 and older. For more information, call 802-254-5808 or check out the Recreation & Parks page on www.brattleboro.org.

Senior bowling roundup

• Week 15 of the winter/spring 2022 season of the Brattleboro Senior Bowling League at Brattleboro Bowl on April 14 saw first place Trash-O-Matic (54-21) maintain its 11-game lead with a 4-1 week, while Stayin’ Alive (43-32) went 5-0 to move into second place. Bowling Stones and The 844s (both 41-34) are tied for third, followed by Slow Movers (37-38), A Rose/Tulips (33-42), The Anythings (28-47), and Good Times (22-53).

Doris Lake had the women’s high handicap game (245), while Jeanne Czuy had the high handicap series (659). Stan Kolpa had the men’s high handicap game (264) and series (716). Stayin’ Alive had the high team handicap game (862) and series (2,544).

In scratch scoring, Robert Rigby led the men for the third straight week with a 664 series that featured games of 246, 226, and 192. Chuck Adams had a 639 series with games of 246 and 221, and Warren Corriveau Sr. had a 615 series with games of 223, 211, and 181.

Five men had a 500-plus series — Jerry Dunham (539, with games of 204, 189, and 180), Marty Adams (548, with a 194 game), Stan Kolpa (536, with a 204 game), Pete Cross (530, with games of 182 and 180), and Gary Montgomery (502). Charlie Marchant rolled a 201 game.

Debbie Kolpa had the women’s high scratch series (476, with a 172 game), while Nancy Dalzell had the high scatch game (179). Lake rolled a 173 game.

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Originally published in The Commons issue #660 (Wednesday, April 20, 2022). This story appeared on page C4.

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