Pitching gets Colonels, Rebels off to a good start

In the first two games of the season, the Brattleboro Colonels are looking like a baseball team with great pitching and not much hitting.

In the season opener on April 2, Soren Pelz-Walsh scored on a fielders' choice in the third inning for the only run of the game in a 1-0 win over Burr & Burton in Manchester. Sawyer Olson threw a complete game three-hitter to pick up the victory on a day when he had to be nearly perfect to win.

Last Thursday, it was Tommy Heydinger's turn to put on a pitching show. He struck out 15 over seven innings as the Colonels held on for a 4-2 win. Once again, the Colonels had trouble hitting. A throwing error, two bases-loaded walks, and a hit by Olson accounted for all the Brattleboro runs.


• Bellows Falls won a wild opener at Hadley Field on April 2, a 13-11 victory over Leland & Gray.

The Terriers had an 8-4 lead after five innings, but allowed the Rebels to get back in it by scoring 7 runs on 3 hits, 5 walks and 3 errors. But the Terriers rallied in the bottom half of the inning by stringing five bloop hits and a hit batsman together to score 5 runs to take back the lead for good. BF's Jeremy Kilburn struck out three of the four batters he faced in the seventh to get the win in relief.

• Leland & Gray's Zach Wilkins came close to throwing a no-hitter, but ended up settling for a complete game two-hit shutout as the Rebels beat Twin Valley, 11-0, on a windy and showery afternoon in Townshend last Wednesday.

Twin Valley's Colin Lozito broke up the no-hitter with two outs in the sixth with a bloop single to left. Sam Molner had the only other solid hit in the seventh with a two-out single to right. Other than that, the Wildcat hitters could not handle the variety of pitches that Wilkins was throwing.

Wilkins was also helped by solid, error-free defense behind him. The Wildcats committed several errors and their pitchers gave up a total of 9 hits. Drew Barnum swung the hot bat for the Rebels with a double, 2 singles, and 2 RBIs.

Caleb Bristol was equally dominating on the mound for the Rebels as they blanked Green Mountain, 15-0, last Friday. Bristol walked 3 and struck out nine in tossing a one-hitter. Riley Kenney and Wade Beattie each had 2 hits for the Rebels, while Barnum drove in a pair of runs.

• In their April 2 opener, Twin Valley outlasted Arlington in a 12-11 slugfest.


• Twin Valley opened its season with a bang, rapping 24 hits on the way to a 40-7 road win at Arlington on April 3. Jordan Niles went 7 for 7 with a pair of doubles to lead the Wildcats. Pitcher Kate Corey struck out 7 in a complete-game victory.

The bats only cooled off slightly last Friday, as the Wildcats beat West Rutland, 15-8. Niles went 4-for-5, while Bit Aekus had 2 hits. Corey struck out 6 to secure the win.

• Leland & Gray got its season off to a good start last Friday as the Rebels hammered Green Mountain, 21-5. Pitcher Nicole Sherman did it all as she struck out 10 and scattered 6 hits, and helped her cause with a pair of three-run homers.

• Woodstock rallied in the seventh to beat Bellows Falls, 8-6, last Friday.


• The Brattleboro girls opened their season on April 2 with a 7-0 victory over Bellows Falls on a cold, windy afternoon at the Hadley Field courts.

BF has a shorthanded team this season, and had to forfeit both doubles matches. In singles play, Hayley Ryan and Aiden Earley won in straight sets, while Katie Tsukamoto, Carly Emond and Jen Hutton won in the second, third and fifth singles spots, respectively.

The Brattleboro boys also cruised in their opener last Thursday, with a 6-1 win over Woodstock at the BUHS courts. Isaiah Ungerleider, Jordan Renouf, Asa Lane, and Cuyler Cunningham all won in straight sets in singles play, and the doubles teams of Benson May and Seth Marcil and Tony Acevedo and Hassan Obediat also won in straight sets.


• The Brattleboro girls started their season with a 12-5 road win over Hartford on April 3. Maddie Rollins had 3 goals and 2 assists, while Becca Bird, Ava Myette, Megan Siggins and Karley Fortier all scored 2 goals each. Lizzie Clarke also scored.

The Brattleboro boys also opened with a win, a 6-2 victory at Hartford. Nik Rancourt had 3 goals, Colin Campbell had a goal and 2 assists, and Conner Elliott-Knaggs and Greg DiSilva had a goal each.

Newfane hoop fan gets trip of a lifetime

• The Make-A-Wish Foundation of Vermont gave a 16-year-old basketball fan from Newfane a dream weekend on Feb. 24-26 at the NBA All-Star Game in Orlando, Fla.

On the Friday night that Christopher Wilson and his family arrived, he was whisked off to the Rising Star Challenge, where he and his entire family were treated like celebrities. They got VIP seating in the NBA suites section and were introduced to many celebrities along the way.

On Saturday, he attended the Jam Session of the East vs. West, a practice, met many of the players, and even got a chance to shoot a few hoops himself. Finally, on Sunday, after an NBA legends brunch, Christopher was picked up early to have a professional photo shoot with both teams and received many autographs from the players.

The Make-A-Wish Foundation of Vermont grants wishes to Vermont children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy. Over the past 22 years, the Vermont Chapter has granted over 575 wishes to Vermont children.

You can help make more Windham County wishes come true by attending the Celebrity Waiter Dinner on Saturday, April 14 at 6 p.m. at World Learning in Brattleboro. Besides getting served by local luminaries, there will be live and silent auctions, with proceeds benefiting Make-A-Wish. Contact Barb Harris at 802-257-7803 to make a reservation.

Trout season opens Saturday

April 14 marks the beginning of trout fishing season in Vermont, and anglers are concerned that Tropical Storm Irene may have done irreparable damage to many trout streams.

The biggest casualty of the storm was the state fish hatchery in Roxbury, which raised brook trout for release in the state's rivers and streams. The Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department says Irene all but destroyed the hatchery, killing nearly 90,000 fish.

The Fish & Wildlife Department says that wild trout populations are down in many brooks and rivers, mainly because of the flood recovery measures that have dredged and widened streams and in the process, eliminated the habitat features that allow fish to thrive.

If you can't wait for Saturday, catch-and-release fishing in permitted on the West River from the mouth of the Connecticut River in Brattleboro to Townshend Dam, and in the Williams River from the Connecticut River boundary upstream to the top of the dam at Brockway Mills Falls in Rockingham.

Check out www.vtfishandwildlife.com for more details on fishing regulations, as well as information on where to get a license.

Three teams join CRVBL for 2012

• The Connecticut River Valley Baseball League (CRVBL) has added three additional teams for the 2012 season.

The Walpole (N.H.) Wild Blue and Newport (N.H.) Polar Bears are new clubs, while the Ludlow Athletics return to the league after a one-year hiatus. They join last year's lineup of the Brattleboro River Rats, Chester CRUSH, Claremont (N.H.) Cardinals, Keene (N.H.) Black Dawgs, Putney Fossils, and Saxtons River Pirates.

CRVBL is an adult, amateur hardball league that was started by Richard Bissell and Jim Austin in 2002. Individuals must be 20 years of age or older to play, 30 to pitch. Each team will play a regular season of 16, games with the top eight facing off in a playoff tournament the weekend of Aug. 17-19.

The official CRVBL opening day is Sunday, April 15. For more information, visit www.crvbl.com or the League's Facebook page.

Five Rivers Lacrosse needs players

• If you live in the Bellows Falls/Chester area and you're interested in playing lacrosse this spring, Five Rivers Lacrosse is starting up again with a pick-up style club.

Boys and girls of all ages are welcome. They will meet for the first time on April 18, from 5:30-7 p.m., at the Chester/Andover Elementary School. Contact Coach Dave Willis at [email protected] for more details.

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