Hawks turn things around

Woodland’s Amanda Doughney returns a shot versus St. Paul’s Victoria Kilbourne April 20 at Woodland Regional High School in Beacon Falls. St. Paul won the match, 4-3. –ELIO GUGLIOTTI

BEACON FALLS — After dropping their first two matches of the season, the Hawks have won five out of their last six to turn the season around.

“The team is growing and gaining confidence in their skills,” Woodland head coach Kate Gavigan said. “We feel we are right there with the rest of the league.”

On Tuesday, Woodland came out and took it to Seymour in a 6-1 win to improve to 5-3 on the season.

Amanda Doughney led the way with an 8-0 shutout in her No. 1 singles match. Kaitlyn Crosby earned an 8-3 win and Morgan Swift won 8-2 in singles play.

The Hawks went on to sweep the doubles portion of the match. Mia Piccolo and Alanna Carasone won handily, 8-2. The team of Carly Erickson and Ella Parker won a tie-breaker 9-8 (8-6) and the duo of Theresa Sherwood and Paige Resnick pulled out an 8-6 win.

Woodland earned a 5-2 win over Torrington last Wednesday.

Doughney (8-5), Rachel Poulas (8-3) secured wins in their singles matches.

Woodland swept to victory in doubles play. Piccolo and Carasone (8-0), Erickson and Parker (8-0), and Sherwood and Swift (8-0) all won their matches convincingly.

The Hawks’ lone loss in their last six outings came against St. Paul last Friday as they dropped a tough 4-3 decision. It was the second time this season that the Falcons beat Woodland by a 4-3 margin.

“We were so close,” Gavigan said. “We lost two singles matches by 8-6 margins, we were that close. I was so proud of the way the girls battled.”

Poulas pulled out a tough 8-4 decision in singles versus the Falcons. In doubles, the teams of Piccolo and Carasone and Erickson and Parker won by slim 8-6 margins to tie the match. St. Paul took the match by winning the No. 3 doubles showdown.

Woodland’s Kaitlyn Crosby returns a shot versus St. Paul’s Katie Pauloz April 20 at Woodland Regional High School in Beacon Falls. St. Paul won the match, 4-3. –ELIO GUGLIOTTI

Gavigan is excited about how the team is coming together.

“Rachel and Kaitlyn are battlers. Amanda is a good example and a leader out there,” she said. “We have a new girl, Morgan, who has shown improvement every day. Our doubles are strong. I’m excited about our upcoming match and that will tell us a lot of where we are going.”

Woodland will be at Crosby on Thursday and head to Holy Cross on Friday for their third straight match on the road this week.

As Woodland prepares for the second half of the season, the Hawks have their sights set on continuing to improve so they are hitting their stride come the postseason.

“Our eyes are on the NVLs because we want to be one of those teams to excel in the league tournament,” Gavigan said. “The girls remember all too well with last year’s one-and-done. We want to not only get there, but when we do we want to do well.”