Both Twin Valley and Bellows Falls have had trouble hitting their shots in their recent games, so when these two teams met in Wilmington on Jan. 14, it was safe to expect that offense would be at a premium.
The Wildcats apparently had just enough as they beat the Terriers, 28-22. Abbi Molner scored 13 points for the Wildcats, with most of her points coming in the second quarter. Jordan Niles added a pair of threes in the second half to finish with eight points.
It was tough for BF to find any flow on offense. Forward Enny Mustapha was double-teamed throughout, neutralizing her inside game. That left for the Dufault sisters, Emily and Molly, to pick up the slack, and they could not. Mustapha finished with five points, while Emily Dufault was held to six points.
Things were even worse for the Wildcats. They managed only a single basket in the first period, but Molner scored eight of the Wildcats’ 10 points in the second quarter to get Twin Valley back in it.
The Wildcats also tightened up on defense, with 16 steals and a solid rebounding effort that kept BF to just one shot at a time. Lexi Reinertson led Twin Valley with seven rebounds, Molner had six, and Colton Butler had five.
Twin Valley kept it rolling last Thursday with a 60-34 rout of Green Mountain in Wilmington. Molner scored 20 points with seven rebounds and three assists in one of the best all-around games the Wildcats have played all season.
Butler and Reinertson each added seven points, while Jordan Niles hit a pair of three-pointers and finished with eight points. Sammy Cunningham-Darrah added six as the Wildcats avenged a painful 55-51 loss to the Chieftains in the GM Holiday Tournament three weeks earlier.
Now 4-6, Twin Valley may be poised for a strong finish in the final three weeks of the season.
• Brattleboro got its week off to a good start on Jan. 14 with a 45-33 win at Amherst, Mass. It was only the third win of the season for the Colonels, but it was an encouraging glimpse of how well this team can play.
Defense was the key to this victory, as the Colonels did not allow Amherst to score in double digits in the first three quarters of the game. On offense, Kayla Savage was the star with 19 points. Abbie Lesure added eight points and six rebounds, while Ari Harrison pulled down 13 rebounds.
• Rust was definitely to blame for Leland & Gray’s 46-33 loss to Mount St. Joseph in Rutland on Jan. 14. It was the Rebels first game in more than two weeks, and the result was a flat effort against MSJ. It was a 22-22 tie at the half, but MSJ pulled away in the second half to win easily. Haley Buffum had 14 points and eight rebounds to lead the Rebels.
The Rebels fared no better last Thursday in Arlington, as they committed 27 turnovers in a sloppy 37-31 loss. Leland & Gray trailed by as much as 12 points, but battled their way back until they ran out of gas at the end. Ashley Goddard had 14 points and 16 rebounds to lead the Rebels. Alex Morrow had 12 rebounds and seven assists.
• Jake Sherman finished with 22 points and Drew Barnum scored 19, including nine in the final quarter, as Leland & Gray held on for a 67-55 win over Bellows Falls in Townshend last Friday.
The game was tied at the half, but Sherman and Barnum took control of the game in the second half. The Terriers had no remedies for the size and power of the Rebels’ duo, especially on the glass. Sherman had eight rebounds and Barnum pulled down 14.
BF tried to counter the Rebels with quickness and good outside shooting. Willie Moore hit three three-pointers on the way to a 15-point night, while Mike LaBeau added 11. Kendrick Mills scored eight of his 12 points in the second quarter, while Trevor Wilson added 10 for the game.
Leland & Gray finished the week at 8-1, while Bellows Falls dropped to 3-6.
• Colin Lozito had another double-double, with 16 points and 10 assists, to lead Twin Valley to a 57-54 win at Arlington on Jan. 14. Dal Nesbitt scored a team-high 18 points for the Wildcats and Sam Molner chipped in 11.
• The Brattleboro girls suffered a frustrating 4-0 loss to Middlebury at Withington Rink last Saturday. The Colonels gave up a goal by Angela Carone after the opening faceoff, and scrambled to recover the rest of the game.
It was still only 1-0 in the third period, but Middlebury then got its insurance goal from Timothea Carone, then added two more goals to put the game away. Middlebury outshot Brattleboro 25-5.
• The Brattleboro boys got knocked off by U-32, 3-1, for the Colonels’ second loss of the season last Saturday at Withington Rink. Jordan Jones opened the scoring for the Raiders in the first period, then got two more goals in the second. Jimmy Podlaski scored the Colonels’ only goal in the third period as the Colonels fell to 8-2 on the season.
A safe hunting season in Vermont
• The Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department released the preliminary tally from the 2012 deer seasons last week and two numbers stand out — 13,850 and zero.
The first figure is the total number of white-tailed deer taken during Vermont’s archery, youth, rifle, and muzzleloader deer hunting seasons, which has been about the average harvest over the past three years in the state. There were many reports from hunters that they were harvesting larger and healthier bucks.
The second is the number of hunting-related shooting incidents in Vermont, as 2012 marked the first time there were no hunter-related shootings during a calendar year.
2012 was a good year to be a big game hunter in Vermont, according to the Fish & Wildlife staff. Populations of wild turkeys and black bears are at very high levels, and turkey hunters harvested 1,365 birds in the fall 2012 seasons, up 53 percent from the previous three-year average and nearly tripling last year’s total.
Vermont hunters harvested 621 bears in 2012, which represents a 20 percent increase from the previous three-year average. Hunters harvested 222 moose in 2012 and had a 52 percent success rate among permit holders, down slightly from 58 percent in 2011.
All harvest totals are subject to several rounds of recounts, which the department said may change the totals slightly before the final report is issued in March.
Romp to Stomp out Breast Cancer at Stratton
• The 11th annual Tubbs Snowshoe Romp to Stomp Out Breast Cancer, to benefit the Vermont-New Hampshire Affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure, kicks off on Saturday, Jan. 26, at Stratton Mountain Resort’s Nordic Center.
With a course that leads snowshoers of all ages and abilities through beautiful wooded trails, the Stratton Romp is a family-friendly affair. The organizers’ goal for this year’s event (a choice of a 3 or 5k snowshoe walk or a 3k snowshoe race) is to break last year’s numbers in both participation (850 Rompers) and money raised ($114,000).
For registration, tips on joining or forming a team or to learn more about sponsoring or supporting the Romp, visit tubbsromptostomp.com.
Winterfest fundraiser set for Feb. 2 at Mount Snow
• AbilityPLUS, the nonprofit that provides adaptive sports programs at Mount Snow, is gearing up for this year’s annual Winterfest fundraiser on Saturday, Feb. 2. It is a day of skiing and riding, followed by an après party with silent auction and live raffle, all to benefit programs that help people with disabilities improve their lives through participation in athletic and recreational programs.
The organization is seeking silent auction and raffle items, sponsors, and skiers/riders to participate in the Winterfest Ski/Ride Til You Drop-A-Thon. This year’s goal is to raise $30,000 to support the AbilityPLUS mission to offer increased access to athletic and recreational opportunities for persons with physical and cognitive disabilities.
To register for the Ski/Ride Til You Drop-A-Thon, or for more information about Winterfest, visit www.abilityPLUS.org. If you want to help with the auction and raffle, contact Sue Tatem at 802-464-1100, ext. 4699, or statem@abilityPLUS.org.