The magic season of the Bellows Falls field hockey team came to an abrupt end on Saturday, as the second-seeded Terriers were shocked at home by the No. 7 North Country Falcons, 1-0, in a Division III quarterfinal.
This was a classic example of allowing an underdog to hang around until the end by not finishing your chances to put the game away early.
BF outshot North Country by a 20-4 margin, and dominated play for most of the 60 minutes. Yet, it was the Falcons that got the game-winner from Brittany Fortier with 1:55 left in regulation time.
North Country called for a time out three minutes before that goal. The game looked like it was headed into overtime, and both coaches made it clear to their players that the turning point of this game was at hand.
“I said ‘we didn’t drive all this way [from Newport] for nothing,’” said North Country’s Chantelle Bouchard.
“I told them that the next goal was going to win this game,” said BF’s Bethany Coursen. “We dominated the game, but we needed to score a goal if we wanted to win.”
And North Country goaltender Danielle Gabucci made sure it didn’t happen. She made 20 saves in the game and stood her ground despite rush after rush after rush by BF’s Anna Clark, Mariah Barnett, and Kya Coursen.
It was a crushing defeat for the Terriers, but Coach Coursen was upbeat. “We had a great regular season (11-2) and we did better than anyone thought we would,” she said. “And just about all my players are coming back next year.”
• Bellows Falls runner Jamie Moore won the boys’ Division III race at the Vermont State High School Cross-Country Championship on Saturday at Thetford Academy, and helped the Terriers finish second to Stowe in team competition.
The junior covered the course in 17 minutes, 50 seconds. His younger brother, sophomore Willie Moore, came in sixth in 18:42. Collin Johnson also placed in the top 10 for the Terriers with a 10th place finish in 19:03.
Also placing for the BF boys was Timothy Jones (30th in 20:31), Matthew Chapin (45th in 22:25), Jamie Matthews (47th in 22:35), and William Scarlett (58th in 24:04).
The BF girls didn’t have enough runners for a team score. Lucy Lawlor came in 26th in 24:59, followed by teammate Chapin Reis (32nd in 25:45),
The Brattleboro boys finished 12th in Division I. Arturo Gutierrez was the top Colonel runner as he finished 49th in 19:04. Spencer Olson came in 65th in 19:42, followed by Ryan Gilligan (76th in 20:39), Jon Burdo (82nd in 21:20), Graham Glennon (85th in 21:40), Josh Parro (86th in 21:46), and Tyler Clement (87th in 21:46). Mount Anthony’s Marc Brandmeyer was the overall Division I winner in 16:37.
The Brattleboro girls did not have enough runners for a team score. Catie Yost was the top Colonel runner in 24:04 for 63rd place, followed by Aliza Racine (80th in 26:07), Luci Hauty (81st in 27:25), and Dana Alexa (87th in 29:46). Champlain Valley’s Taylor Spillane won the Division I girls’ race in 19:07.
• No. 15 Brattleboro lost to second-seeded Champlain Valley, 3-0, in a Division I playdown game in Hinesburg last Wednesday. CVU got its first goal three minutes into the game, and never looked back. The Colonels finished the year with a 5-10 record.
• Twin Valley met a similar fate in their Division III playdown last Wednesday with a 3-1 loss at Stowe. The Wildcats spoiled Stowe’s shutout bid, however, when Sammy Cunningham scored from Hannah Swanson in the 70th minute. Twin Valley finished the season with a 5-8-2 record.
• Brattleboro gave up a pair of late goals as the No. 10 Colonels fell to No. 7 Mount Mansfield, 3-1, in a playdown in Jericho last Tuesday.
Brandon Aguiar scored in the first half to give the Cougars a 1-0 lead. Brattleboro’s Sam Kochinskas scored the equalizer in the second half, but Mount Mansfield put the game away with goals from Jeff Estes and Tyler Hawley in the last 10 minutes. The Colonels ended up with a 7-8 record.
• A disappointing season for the Brattleboro Colonels ended Saturday with a 44-26 loss to Mount Mansfield in a Division I consolation game.
After trailing the Colonels 26-8 at halftime, Mount Mansfield scored the next 36 points for a comeback victory.
Mount Mansfield gained 303 of its 337 total yards on the ground, as Dakota Jones, Luke Dolan, Matt Merchant, and Parker Young all ran for touchdowns and Dolan hit Josh Fitzgerald with a 3-yard touchdown pass to wrap up the Cougars’ scoring. Brooks Gay had three fumble recoveries and Carter Glenn had a trio of sacks for the 4-5 Cougars.
Brattleboro wrapped up its year with a 3-6 record.
Dummerston sweeps Putney Tournament
• Dummerston School took first and second place at the Putney Tournament at Landmark College on Oct. 20 and 21.
How did they do that? Another school dropped out at the last minute, so Dummerston placed a second squad into the 14-team tournament. The final ended up being a Dummerston versus Dummerston match, with the Dummerston B team winning.
Jackson Buettner of Dummerston was named best defensive player, while Nathan Lewis of Dummerston was named best offensive player.
The real winner of the event was the Putney Recreation Department, for whom the tournament was a fundraiser.
Ski-skate & snowboard sale is Nov. 3
• The annual Phil Dunham Ski-Skate & Snowboard Sale, directed by the Brattleboro Recreation & Parks Department and the Brattleboro Outing Club, will be held Saturday, Nov. 3, from 8-11 a.m., at the Gibson-Aiken Center, 207 Main St.
If you are interested in selling or buying snowboards, skis, ski boots, poles, and bindings (both downhill and cross country), skates, all winter sports clothing and hockey equipment, this is the event for you!
People who wish to enter items in the sale must bring them to the Gibson-Aiken Center by Friday, Nov. 2, between noon and 7 p.m. only. Any winter sport article can be listed for sale, but only 10 items per family will be accepted for each floor.
Equipment brought in for the Ski-Skate & Snowboard Sale will be checked for DIN numbers. This means that sports shops might not service those items without a DIN number. Equipment that does not have a DIN number will be marked with a red dot on the price tag.
All those who displayed articles in the sale must return to the Center on Monday, Nov. 5 between noon and 6 p.m. If you have any questions, contact the Brattleboro Recreation & Parks Department Office at 802-254-5808 between the hours of 9 a.m.-noon and 1-5 p.m., Monday through Friday.
Grafton Ponds lowers season pass pricing
• Grafton Ponds Outdoor Center has reworked its season pass pricing, knocking nearly 40 percent off last year’s rates, but only if you buy it before Thanksgiving.
The early-season pass pricing is $99 for adults, $79 for students and seniors, $59 for youths. Family passes are $299. Enhancements to the pass this year include a modified “youth” segment, which now encompasses age six through high school, and includes snowshoe trail access and snow tubing. Season pass holders will only need to pay the $3 rental for a tube.
Winter and summer ski and bike passes for individuals and families are also available.
Grafton Ponds offers 15 kilometers of cross-country skiing, 5 k with snowmaking. It also has 10 kilometers of snowshoeing trails, a 600-foot tubing run, ice skating, and a full-service base lodge. Weather permitting, they hope to open for the winter season in early December. For additional details, visit GraftonPonds.com or call 802-843-2400.