Brattleboro center Lily Carignan (5), seen here skating against Middlebury last month, scored her team’s only goal in a 6-1 loss to Rutland on Jan. 31 at Withington Rink.
Randolph T. Holhut/Commons file photo
Brattleboro center Lily Carignan (5), seen here skating against Middlebury last month, scored her team’s only goal in a 6-1 loss to Rutland on Jan. 31 at Withington Rink.

A win for the BUHS girls, a loss for the BUHS boys against Mount Anthony

Everything seemed lined up in favor of the Brattleboro Bears boys' basketball team going into their Feb. 2 game against the Mount Anthony Patriots at the BUHS gym.

The Bears were coming off the high of a buzzer-beating victory over Burr & Burton on Jan. 26, and they had a week off to prepare for their Route 9 rivals.

And, for the first three quarters, Bears fans saw a close, intense, and competitive game. Then MAU seniors Carter Thompson and Shemar Sookdar sparked a 15-3 run in the first six minutes of the fourth quarter and the Patriots left town with a 63-54 victory,

Thompson and Sookar combined for 45 of the Patriots' 63 points, with Thompson scoring a game-high 27. Both also played great defense to force turnovers that quickly were transformed into points for MAU.

Brattleboro held their own in the first half. After scratching out a 9-7 lead after one quarter, senior forward John Haskins scored 10 of his team-high 18 points in the second quarter as he dominated inside and turned several offensive rebounds into baskets. The first half ended in a 26-26 tie.

"John Haskins is undoubtedly our team MVP," said Brattleboro coach Winston Sailsman Jr. "Game in and game out, he's always a force on the boards. He's always giving us opportunities to stay in games. I can't say enough about him."

The third quarter was just about as even, but the tide started turning in the Patriots' favor when a 15-footer by Thompson gave MAU a 40-39 lead with 3:23 left. From that point, the Patriots gradually shifted the momentum and took a 48-43 lead into the fourth quarter.

Brattleboro struggled to score in the final quarter. Aside from a pair of three-pointers by junior guard Keagan Systo, the Bears could not stop the Patriots' surge. They contained Haskins in the second half, holding him to just four points on free throws. Systo finished with 10 points, while junior guard John Satterfield added nine points.

"I tried to tell them to slow it down," Sailsman said of the Bears' play in the fourth quarter. "They started to rush to get back in the game, and that's when the turnovers began to hurt us."

The Bears fell to 5-10 with the loss. They hold the No. 11 spot in the Division I standings with four games to play in the regular season.

Girls' basketball

• Brattleboro is starting to built some momentum for the playoffs. On Feb. 1 in Bennington, the Bears beat Mount Anthony, 45-33, to sweep the season series with the Patriots.

MAU tried to concentrate their defensive efforts on shutting down sophomore guards Reese Croutworst and Abby Henry. The strategy was somewhat successful. Croutworst got all of her team-high 14 points in the first half, and was held scoreless in the second half, while Henry was held to five points and was in foul trouble for much of the game.

But Brattleboro had plenty of other scoring options. Senior guard Kate Pattison picked up the slack and scored 12 points on four three-pointers. The Bears enters the final three weeks of the season with a 7-6 record and the No. 9 ranking in Division I.

• After a 51-46 loss to Springfield on Jan. 29 and a 43-23 loss to Hartford on Feb. 1, Bellows Falls got back into the win column with a 57-55 victory over White River Valley on Feb. 3 in Royalton. BF ended the week with a 10-4 record with the No. 5 ranking in Division III.

• Leland & Gray is starting to get it together as the regular season winds down. They have won their last four games, including a 40-30 victory over Green Mountain on Jan. 29 and a 39-17 road win over Woodstock on Feb. 2. The Rebels ended the week with an 8-8 record and the No. 7 ranking in Division IV.

• Twin Valley is still searching for its first win of the season. The 0-13 Wildcats dropped a pair of road games last week - a 43-28 loss to Mill River on Jan. 29 and a 41-24 loss to Green Mountain on Jan. 31.

Boys' basketball

• Twin Valley lost to visiting White River Valley, 47-44, on Jan. 30, but bounced back with a 65-34 victory at Arlington on Feb. 2 to improve to 10-6 on the season. They hold the No. 4 spot in the Division IV rankings.

• Bellows Falls is sliding down the Division III rankings. After a 62-50 home loss to Mount Anthony on Jan. 30 and a 69-34 loss at Otter Valley on Feb. 2, the Terriers are now 6-10 and hold the No. 13 spot in the division.

• Leland & Gray's struggles continue as their losing streak increased to 11 games with three losses last week - a 71-43 road loss at West Rutland on Jan. 30, and home losses to Woodstock (49-44 on Feb. 1) and Rivendell (67-58 on Feb. 2). The Rebels ended the week at 2-14 and are ranked No. 14 in Division IV.

Ice hockey

• The Brattleboro girls gave up five goals in the first two periods in a 6-1 loss to Rutland at Withington Rink on Jan. 31. Lily Carignan had the goal for the Bears in the third period. Brattleboro then lost to Missisquoi, 10-0, in Swanton on Feb. 3 to fall to 1-13 for the season.

• The Brattleboro boys lost at Milton, 3-0, on Jan. 31. Noah Keeler, Luke Bushey, and Jacob Deuso were the goal scorers for Milton as Bears goaltender James Fagley made 18 saves. On Feb. 3, the Bears beat visiting Rutland, 6-2, to improve their record to 6-6-3.

Nordic skiing

• The Brattleboro boys finished third behind Mount Anthony and Woodstock in the Woodstock Classic on Jan. 30. Nico Conathan-Leach led the Bears with a seventh-place finish in 17 minutes, 30 seconds.

With the lack of snow, it's been hard to stage races, but weather permitting, the Brattleboro girls' and boys' teams will be skiing in the Southern Vermont League Championships, with the Classic event on Feb. 7 at either Wild Wings in Peru or Prospect Mountain in Woodford, the Skate event on Feb. 14 at either the Brattleboro Outing Club or Prospect, and the Relay event on Feb. 20 at Mountain Top Resort in Chittenden.

The state Classic Championships are scheduled for Feb. 27 at Rikert Outdoor Center in Ripton, while the Skate Championships are scheduled for March 1 at Craftsbury Outdoor Center.

Vermont State Parks are hiring for the 2024 season

• With warmer weather just around the corner, Vermont State Parks are gearing up for their annual spring hiring.

"If you love working outside and making a difference, meeting people from all over the world, and being part of a team, you might just be the next great addition to the Vermont State Park staff," according to the state's recruiting pitch.

There are openings for a commuting assistant manager at Fort Dummer State Park in Brattleboro and Townshend State Park. And all state parks - including Jamaica State Park and Molly Stark State Park in Wilmington - have attendant openings. To learn more about these jobs, and others around the state, visit

Volunteers needed for Harris Hill Ski Jump Weekend

• Next weekend, Feb. 17 and 18, is the Harris Hill Ski Jump, and volunteers are needed to pitch in for a shift or full day to help make this year's event a success.

For more details, contact Volunteer Coordinator Kathryn Einig at [email protected], or visit

Rec. Dept. offers youth indoor soccer

• The Brattleboro Recreation & Parks Department will offer youth indoor soccer beginning the week of Feb. 26 and continuing through March 27.

Pick-up games will take place from 5 to 6 p.m. in the Gibson-Aiken Center's Third Floor Gym. Grades K-1 will play on Mondays, Grades 2-3 on Tuesdays, and Grades 4-6 on Wednesdays. Scores will not be kept. Shin guards and sneakers are required. The focus will be on having fun. Don't forget to bring water.

The fee is $20 for Brattleboro residents and $35 for non-residents. Space is limited. Individuals can register online at, or in person Monday through Friday, 9 a.m to noon and 1 to 4:30 p.m., at the Gibson-Aiken Center on Main Street. For more information, call 802-254-5808 or visit their Facebook or Instagram pages.

Senior bowling roundup

• Week 5 of the winter/spring season of the Brattleboro Senior Bowling League at Brattleboro Bowl on Feb. 2 saw High Rollers (21-4) have another 5-0 week to remain in first place while Good Times (17-8) had a 4-1 week to hold on to second place. Stepping Stones II and Four Seasons (both 11-14) remain tied for third, followed by Stayin' Alive (10-14), Hairiers (10-15), Four Pins (10-15), and Slow Movers (9-16).

Roberta Parsons had the women's high handicap game (233) and series (613), while Fred Ashworth had the men's high handicap game (260) and series (704). Good Times had the high team handicap game (896) and series (2,617).

Ashworth had the men's high scratch series (608) with games of 234 and 200. Peter Deyo had a 605 series with games of 234 and 193. Robert Rigby had a 596 series with games of 211 and 207, while Milt Sherman had a 540 series with a 193 game and Gary Montgomery had a 519 series with a 195 game. Charlie Marchant had a 511 series, Rick Westcott had a 505 series, and Jerry Dunham had a 190 game.

Diane Cooke had the women's high scratch series (440), with games of 153 and 152. Nancy Dalzell had a 150 game.

Randolph T. Holhut, deputy editor of this newspaper, has written this column since 2010 and has covered sports in Windham County since the 1980s. Readers can send him sports information at [email protected].

This Sports column by Randolph T. Holhut was written for The Commons.

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