Word from the Woods
The Woodland boys entered Wednesday’s Senior Night matchup with Watertown still unbeaten at 14-0-1 after maintaining the goose egg in the loss column over the last week. Two of the three wins last week weren’t easy, including a 1-0 win over Crosby last Friday and a 2-1 win in Ansonia on Monday. Eric Dietz added to his single-season scoring record by adding three goals in three games, including two in a 4-0 win over Seymour last Thursday and the equalizer at Ansonia. Seth Stevens had the only goal in a 1-0 win over Crosby while Mike Segala scored the game-winner against the Chargers. Woodland (14-0-1) set the school record for victories in a season with the win over Ansonia and looked for its second straight NVL Brass Division title on Wednesday against Watertown. Check mycitizensnews.com for details on what happened in the regular-season finale against the Indians.
Girls Swimming and Diving
The Hawks improved to 12-1-1 on the season—by far the best record in school history—with wins over Sheehan, Lyman Hall, and Kennedy over the last week. In Tuesday’s 95-85 win over Kennedy, several individuals won events while Katie-Jean Hinckley, Chrissy Leeper, and Jen Tavares swam a more relaxed schedule in advance of next week’s NVL championships. Winners included the 200 medley relay team of Jen Tavares, Sarah Parker, Sydney Corneau, and Brianna Christiano, Emily Soulier in the 200 free, Emily Trumbley in the 200 IM, Dayna Chucta in diving, Chrissy Leeper in the 100 fly, Christiano in the 100 free, and Tavares in the 500 free. Last Friday’s 96-88 win over Lyman Hall had more of the Hawks’ star power as Hinckley won the 200 free, Tavares won the 50 free and 100 back, Leeper won the 100 fly, Chucta broke her diving record again, and the Tavares-Leeper-Corneau-Hinckley squad placed first in the 200 free. Woodland’s final regular-season meet was set for Wednesday at West Haven before NVL time trials on Nov. 2, the NVL diving championships on Nov. 3, and the NVL finals on Nov. 5.
The Naugatuck spikers clinched spots in the Class L state tournament and the NVL tournament last week with three wins in two days. The Greyhounds shut out Wilby twice on Thursday before winning a five-set match over Crosby on Friday’s senior night to clinch tournament berths. In the 3-2 win over the Bulldogs, Naugy rallied after losing the first set and won a 15-6 decision in the final set. The ‘Hounds were led by Jess Buckley (29 assists, 10 aces, nine digs), Sarah Chandler (19 digs, nine kills, three aces), Cataysia Brown (11 kills, three blocks), and Lauren Andreoli (nine kills, seven digs, four aces). Even after losing to Woodland on Monday, the Greyhounds were 8-8 entering their final two matches of the season, on Wednesday at Torrington and on Friday at Holy Cross. Naugy will begin NVL tournament play on Saturday.
Girls Swimming and Diving
Naugy split a pair of meets last week to move its record to 5-3 with one last three-way meet set for Friday. The Greyhounds lost to league power Torrington, 102-80, last Friday before beating nonleague opponent Masuk, 94-89, on Monday. Event winners against the Red Raiders included Bianca Antrum (diving), Rebecca Doback (100 free), Maria Carranza (100 breast), and the 400 free relay team (Doback, Elizabeth Walsh, Barbara Martins, Amanda Miller). More event wins came against the Panthers, including Walsh (200 free), Antrum (diving), Doback (500 free), the 200 free relay team (Martina Niebrzydowski, Tattiana Serrano, Walsh, and Miller), and the 400 free relay team (Martins, Miller, Walsh, Doback). Naugy hosts both Holy Cross and Wilby on Friday night before championship week, which sees the NVL time trials on Nov. 2, the NVL diving championships on Nov. 3, and the NVL finals on Nov. 5.
CN Athletes of the Week
Kenny Mo’s Pick
The Naugatuck boys cross country team outdistanced all of its opponents this season, right up until the last meet of the season when the ‘Hounds were finally knocked off by Watertown. That set up a battle for the NVL championship last week at Veterans Park. A week after their first and only loss of the season, the Greyhounds narrowly lost to the Indians again, 41-43. But not all was lost as Naugatuck’s Muad Hrezi won the individual championship.
Hrezi, the defending league and Class L state champion, easily won the race in 15:50, 20 seconds faster than second-place finisher and teammate Nick Moriello. Hrezi will try to repeat as a state champion on Saturday when he competes again in the Class L meet Saturday at Wickham Park in Manchester.
Part of what makes the Woodland girls soccer team one of the best squads in program history is its strength throughout the field. The Hawks can win a 5-4 game as easily as they can win a 1-0 decision with their explosive scoring and tight defense. But at least one player has been in the middle of both sides, and that’s Woodland’s Keri DeBiase.
DeBiase, a three-year starter in the midfield and a co-captain, has helped the Hawks to a 11-1-3 record through the first 15 games of the season. That mark is one win away from tying a school record for regular-season wins and three away from tying the school record for overall wins. DeBiase netted two goals to help her team to a 3-1 win over Wolcott on senior night and her diverse skill set, along with the talent around her, makes the Hawks one of the favorites in this week’s NVL tournament.