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Colonel girls edge Mill River in hoops opener

Could this be a big season for the Brattleboro Colonels girls’ basketball team? They have many returning players, including senior standout Ari Harrison, with significant varsity experience.

What they don’t have is size, but coach Paul Freed hopes that speed and good ball movement can make up for it.

In the Colonels’ 53-46 win over Mill River last Saturday at the BUHS gym, you could see the outlines of Freed’s vision.

Freed likes to use a deep rotation, and he made use of all but one of his players in the opener. Abbie Lesure led the Colonels with 14 points, including two three-pointers. Kayla Savage added 11; Maddie Derosia and Taylor Bird chipped in nine and eight points, respectively. Each sank a three-pointer.

“Our main objective this season is to push the ball up the floor and score points in transition,” Freed said after the game. “I wanted to make sure everyone got some meaningful minutes, especially in the fourth quarter.”

The Colonels got off to a hot start, taking a 14-3 lead midway through the opening quarter. Mill River hung around though, mainly because of Freed’s desire to use this game as a learning experience for this team.

The Minutewomen got as close as 26-20 with two minutes left in the first half, but the Colonels built up the lead to 43-28 by the end of third. Mill River made another run at the Colonels in the final quarter, and got as close as 50-46 with 32 seconds to play.

While Mill River keyed its defense on Harrison and held her to three points, her teammates picked up the slack nicely. “The consistency will come with time, but our experience helped us down the stretch,” Freed said.

Boys’ basketball

• Brattleboro opened its season on the road at Mount Mansfield last Saturday and lost, 59-50. A 20-point second quarter gave Mount Mansfield the cushion it needed to hold off the Colonels.

Tinga Adiang led all scorers with 17 points for the Cougars, who went 18-of-26 at the free-throw line and led 31-24 at the half. Chris McAuliffe scored 16 points; Connor Elliott-Knaggs added 15 for the 0-1 Colonels.

• Leland & Gray won its opener last Saturday, defeating West Rutland, 62-39.

The 1-0 Rebels got its points from Corey Nystrom (18 points), Ryan Borgeson (14), and Corso Donati (12).

Girls’ hockey

• On Dec. 11, the Colonels were shut out by U-32, 2-0, in Montpelier. U-32’s Megan Ryan assisted a short-handed goal by Emily George just before the end of the first period, and then Ryan got the insurance goal in the third period. Cheyenne Smith had nine saves in goal to earn the shutout victory.

The Colonels traveled to Middlebury last Saturday for a 4-0 win by the Tigers. Four different Middlebury skaters — Timi Carone, Julia Carone, Sara Kelley and Harper Smith — scored as Brattleboro goalie Alex Fellows made 64 saves to keep the game competitive for the Colonels, who fell to 1-3.

Boys’ hockey

• The Colonel boys are still looking for a win. They played host to St. Johnsbury on Dec. 11, and lost 5-3. Anton Gulko had two goals and an assist for the Hilltoppers, while Renat Nigmatullin also scored two goals.

Last Saturday, Woodstock’s Connor McCarthy scored twice to spoil a 39-save performance from Brattleboro’s Greg DiSilva as the Wasps blanked the Colonels, 4-0. Brattleboro is now 0-3.

Sunrise Rotary hosts Ping-Pong event

• The Brattleboro Sunrise Rotary Club’s “Battle of the Paddle Two” Ping-Pong tournament is scheduled for Saturday, Jan. 4, 2014, at the Gibson-Aiken Center in Brattleboro.

The double-elimination tournament is open to all skill levels in age groups 11 and under, 12 to 15, and 16 and older. The net proceeds from this tournament will benefit various Rotary projects.

Entry fees are $15 per person in advance, $20 the day of the tournament. Registration is from 8 to 8:30 a.m., with play beginning at 9. Prizes will be awarded to the top two in each age division. Refreshments will be available.

For more information or to request a registration form, contact Sandy Shriver at 802-257-7244, ext. 114 or ashriver@potterstewartlaw.com. Players can also download a registration form at www.brattleborosunriserotary.org.

Jameson named to WNEU Hall of Fame

• Former BUHS field hockey star Allison Jameson, a 2007 graduate of Western New England University, was inducted this fall to the WNEU Downes Athletic Hall of Fame. Combining excellence on the playing field and in the classroom, Jameson ranks among the top student-athletes in WNEU history.

Jameson became the first WNEU field hockey player to garner All-America recognition from the National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA) and ESPN the Magazine College Division Academic All-America accolades in 2006, when she racked up 12 goals and 12 assists for 36 points on 125 shots in 22 games played during her senior year. Later that spring, she was announced as the WNEU Coca-Cola Female Athlete of the Year.

All told, Jameson was twice a NFHCA Division III All-New England honoree, four times an All-North Atlantic Conference First Team pick, and a four-time NFHCA Division III Academic Team selection. The 2003 NAC Rookie of the Year finished up her career with a school-record 147 points on 56 goals and 35 assists from 2003-06, leading the squad in scoring during her first three seasons from her forward position.

A team captain, Jameson led WNEU to a school-best 19-5 record in her junior year and was voted the 2005 NAC Tournament Most Valuable Player after the Golden Bears captured the program’s first conference crown.

She scored the game-winning goal on a penalty corner shot with eight seconds remaining in a 2-1 victory over Maine-Farmington in the NAC title game that qualified the Golden Bears for the NCAA Division III Field Hockey Championship for the first time. The Golden Bears enjoyed a 56-34 record for a .622 winning percentage with Jameson in the lineup, including a 28-6 mark against NAC opponents.

Jameson received her bachelor’s degree in marketing communications/advertising. She took her master’s degree in integrated marketing communication from Emerson College in 2009. She is communications coordinator at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.

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Originally published in The Commons issue #234 (Wednesday, December 25, 2013). This story appeared on page E1.

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