Spring 2016 Sports Roundup- and What’s Going on with the Turf?

By Matilda Kreider

First, you must have noticed that the turf and track at BHS are pretty much… gone. On June 6th, crews began the process of tearing up and replacing the James MacVeigh Athletic Complex’s turf field and track. The $750,000 project should be completed by mid-August, in time for the start of fall sports.

The school year has ended, and so have most of the state tournaments for spring sports. Here’s how the Hornets’ seasons turned out.

Autumn McHenry and Lanle Crotty playing against Hand Credit: (Peter Hvizdak - New Haven Register) May 16th, 2016
Autumn McHenry and Lanle Crotty playing against Hand
Credit: (Peter Hvizdak – New Haven Register) May 16th, 2016

Girls Lacrosse

The girls lacrosse team lost its first game of the season.. and then won the next 12 straight. They posted a regular season record of 14-2 and were seeded #3 in the SCC tournament, although they lost in the semifinal round to #2 seed Cheshire. The team was then seeded #2 in the Class M State Tournament and beat Brookfield and East Lyme before losing 15-6 to #6 New Canaan in the semifinal round. New Canaan went on to win the championship. Girls lax finished with an impressive record of 16-4.

Boys Lacrosse

The boys lacrosse team split its regular season to end up with a solid 8-8 record. This was enough to give the team a berth into the qualifying round of the Class M State Tournament as the #14 seed, but their season was cut short when they lost 4-3 to Pomperaug, the #19 seed. The boys finished with an 8-9 record and some memorable victories.

Boys Tennis

Led by eventual state champions Dan O’Neill and Miles Conlin and state finalist Matt Sachs, the boys tennis team had a great season. The team won its first 8 matches straight and then finished with a record of 10-7. Matt Sachs was the runner-up of the Class M singles, losing to Guilford’s Evan Powell in the final round. Miles Conlin and Dan O’Neill beat Eric Benninghoff and Ishan Mirchandani of Weston to win the Class M doubles. With many strong competitors from all grades, the team took 2nd place in the Class M State Tournament.

O'Neill, head coach Matt Fraezna, Conlin, and Sachs; Photo Credit: zip06, June 2nd
O’Neill, head coach Matt Fraezna, Conlin, and Sachs; Photo Credit: zip06, June 2nd

Girls Tennis 

The girls tennis team went 8-9 on the season, posting many great wins along the way. While this wasn’t enough to give them a shot in the Class M State Tournament, they were only one seed away from making it, and it was a great season nonetheless.

Girls Track & Field

The girls track team had a great run this season, finishing with a 10-1 record, and stood out in the postseason. Finishing 4th at the SCC West Sectional Meet, 7th at the SCC Championship Meet, and 5th at the Class MM State Championship Meet, the team also had many individual winners. Etta Hanlon won the long jump at the West Sectional Meet. Notably, at the Class MM Meet, Claira Janover won the triple jump (35 feet 5 inches) and came in third in the 100 hurdles (16:01), Cyrene Nicholas came in third in the 1,600 meter run (5:22:05), and Bridget Wirtz came in third in the pole vault (9-06). Also, Keira Integlia took fourth in the javelin throw (104-10), Issy Bysiewicz took fifth in the 300 meter hurdles (50.85), Taylor Brown took sixth in the pole vault (9-0), and Gerling Daniels took seventh in the 100 meter dash (12.84). Janover, Nicholas, Wirtz, Integlia, and Bysiewicz all competed in the State Open, and some athletes will compete in the heptathlon and other events this week.

Boys Track & Field

Having lost a large group of senior runners in the Class of 2015, the boys team had to work even harder this year, finishing with a 4-7-1 record. The team took 6th at the SCC West Sectional Meet, 17th at the SCC Meet, and 20th at the Class MM Meet. Notable standouts included Kory King and Seraphin Tala in the hurdling and jumping events; at the Class MM Meet, King took 2nd in the 110 meter hurdles (15:48) and 7th in the 300 meter hurdles (42.51) and Tala took 8th in the 300 meter hurdles (42:81). King won the 110 hurdles at the West Sectional Meet and will compete in the decathlon this week.

Golf

In girls soccer coach Jen Kohut’s first season as head coach, the golf team went 14-6 on the season and took 12th in the Division II State Meet. Ryan Sember led the team at that meet by shooting a 79 to come in 9th place. Sember shot an 81 to come in 10th at the SCC Meet, while Liam Deane shot a 92. Other frequent low-scorers included Joe Reilly, Mike Annunziata, and Jason Brennan. Sophomore EJ Lee was the lone girl on the team and consistently performed as the No. 6 shooter.  Sember was given the honor of being a member of the All-State Golf Team.

Marisa Minore Credit: zip06
Marisa Minore, Credit: zip06

Softball

Having lost 6 senior starters in the class of 2015, the softball team had some rebuilding to do. Freshman Sophia Araneo stepped in on the mound and finished the season with 5 wins under her belt; junior Olivia Datre threw one game against Cross and won that game. After a rough start to the season that left the squad 2-14 in the middle of May, the team pulled together to win its last 4 games and finish at 6-14. While this was not enough to make the state tournament, the team had an exciting last week, including taking 6-2 win over Sheehan after losing 11-2 to the same team earlier in the week.

Baseball

The baseball team finished the season with a regular season record of 9-11 and was undefeated in Oronoque division play by beating Cross, Career, North Haven, and East Haven twice each. Also notable was a 3-2 victory over Hand early in the season. Facing the #2 seed Hamden- a team having a record season- in the SCC opener, the team dropped a close 5-4 decision. Looking on to the Class L state tournament, the #30 seeded team faced the #3 seed Wilcox Tech but didn’t go down without a fight, losing 3-2. Still, it’s always an exciting season when the team makes both postseason tournaments!

 

Where is the Class of 2016 Headed?

From the Editor

From L-R: Cara Delucia, Lily Kirby, Matilda Kreider, Maddie McGann
From L-R: Cara Delucia, Lily Kirby, Matilda Kreider, Maddie McGann

As the school year winds down and graduation approaches, the class of 2016 looks ahead to next fall; seniors showed their college pride on April 29th, just two days before they had to make their official college decisions.

From L-R: Cleo Kyriakides, Lily Kirby, Claira Janover Issy Bysiewicz
From L-R: Cleo Kyriakides, Lily Kirby, Claira Janover Issy Bysiewicz

Some of the grade’s academic leaders will be storming the halls of Ivy League and other elite institutions. Valedictorian Issy Bysiewicz will be attending Yale University, Lily Kirby will be attending Brown University, Cleo Kyriakides will be attending Cornell University, and Claira Janover will be attending Harvard College. Marshall Borrus will be attending Williams College, while Matt Sachs is heading to either Cornell University or Georgetown University.

Graduates will be spreading far and wide, with many attending schools thousands of miles away. Remi Steinhardt will be attending St. Edwards University in Austin, Texas, while Rachel Krug will head to the University of Arizona and Tristyn Wooster will be playing lacrosse at Arizona State University. Raissi Bysiewicz will head down to New Orleans to attend Tulane University. Justine Hooks will be going to the University of Southern California and Shradha Shrestha will attend San Diego State University. Quochelle Small will be going to Seattle University.

A handful of the students headed to UConn next year.
A handful of the students headed to UConn next year.

In addition to Wooster’s commitment to play lacrosse at Arizona, there will be many other graduates playing varsity sports in college.

From the BHS swimming and diving team, Paige MacNeil will be swimming for Wagner College, Cassandra Collins will be swimming and diving at Babson College, Erika Maercklein will be swimming at CCSU, and Caitlin Daley will be swimming at Wheaton College.

Anneliese Troidle will run cross country and track for Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Jessie O’Connor will play soccer at Nova Southeastern University, and Kendall Simmons will play lacrosse at SCSU. Noah Degoursey will play lacrosse at Keene State College, Kory King will play basketball at Salve Regina, Jake Jacobson will play basketball at Springfield college, and Matt Sachs may play tennis at Georgetown. Tess Paluzzi will be on the dance team at the University of Cincinnati. Many other athletes intend to play club sports or try out for the varsity teams once they get to school.

On the musical side of things, Kim Klarman will be studying music therapy and Shannon Finn will be studying contemporary vocal performance at Berklee College of Music in Boston while Marissa Smoker heads to Point Park University in Pittsburgh to study musical theater. Travis Johnson will be studying theater at SCSU, and Chris Altavilla will be studying musical education at Temple University.

From L-R: Abby Atkinson, Victoria Donadio, Jenna Vitale
From L-R: Abby Atkinson, Victoria Donadio, Jenna Vitale

Schools with big draws for this year’s graduates include UConn, UNH, Quinnipiac, SCSU, ECSU, and CCSU. Popular cities include Boston, New York, Providence, and Washington, D.C- and, of course, Storrs. Many students plan to major in fields like psychology, business, political science, art, biology, engineering, and nursing.

Additionally, many students are planning to join the workforce, enlist in the military, or attend technical schools. Wherever they go, we know the class of 2016 will be successful!

Spring Pep Rally is Back in Action

By Danni Dunlop

The last week before April vacation ends with the gathering of the Branford High School community at the Spring Pep Rally.  After last year’s upset at the cancellation of the spirit-filled event, the teams are ready to take on the floor yet again.

Many students and athletes were frustrated last year that the Spring Pep Rally was cancelled last year in the first place.

Mr. Lee Panagoulias, BHS Principal, said he met up with all the team captains last year beforehand to come up with a plan for the pep rally since it is really all up to the students.

According to Panagoulias, the students were unable to come up with a plan on time.  So the administration just held off the Spring Pep Rally, he said.  He is glad that all participants of the Pep Rallies came back stronger this year. This year’s pep rally will follow the same format it has been for years – student skits and speeches.

Participants of the event last year were really confused and frustrated about the reason why their Pep Rally had been cancelled because of other people’s mistakes.

“I thought it was kind of unfair and annoying they cancelled it because of one team doing something that Spring sports had nothing to do with,” said Zane Kmietek, a sophomore on the varsity baseball team.

But on the bright side, students are filled with happiness that the school-wide event is back for good.

“I’m really glad administration gave us another chance to bring back school spirit,” said Katie Massey, senior co-captain of the BHS varsity softball team.

Best of luck to all the teams this season. Go Hornets!

Making History: Dance Team Has Best Showing Yet at Nationals

By Meghan Cusack

The members of the BHS Dance Team came back victorious from the UDA National Dance Team Championship at Disney World in Florida.

The dance team competed in the Small Varsity Jazz and the Small Varsity Hip-Hop categories and advanced to the finals with their Hip-Hop routine. Competing against 60 other teams, the team finished tenth nationally- the best they have ever done.

To view video of their performances, click here.

On their success at Nationals, Junior Hailey LaBonte said, “Making it to the top ten out of sixty other amazing teams was unforgettable. This team has been faced with so much and to exceed against all the odds was an amazing feeling.” LaBonte also commented, “Being a competitive dancer my whole life, nothing was like this. The sense of positivity and hard work is unbelievable.”

Senior Jessie Pantani, echoed these thoughts. “The weeks leading up to Florida were extremely hard on everyone, mentally and physically, but I can speak for the captains and coaches in saying we were so proud of all [of] the new girls’ determination,” she said. “After making it to semi-finals, we knew there was nothing stopping us. The feeling of hearing our names get called for finals I’ll never forget, as it was really one of my last major Nationals memories.”

In respect to her last time competing with the dance team for Nationals, Pantani said, “It was a rush of emotions. Everyone was crying and hugging and we weren’t sure if it was sad or happy. It was happy to have gotten this far and to be so proud of the girls surrounding you, but for me, Michaela (Gavigan) and Tess (Paluzzi), it was devastating to know it was our last Nationals experience.”

The Branford Dance Team suffered multiple injuries and other setbacks leading up to this significant competition and managed to perform better than ever before and come out on top. Congratulations to the Branford High School Dance Team on this accomplishment.

A Fun Friday: Winter Pep Rally and Holiday Celebration

By Matilda Kreider

Our last full week before winter break ended with a fun-filled sendoff this Friday. In the morning, winter sports teams entertained the crowd with skits and dances.

The girls indoor track team started off with a dance and some candy thrown to the crowd, which was well-received. The boys team followed with an elaborate reenactment of a Star Wars battle- very appropriate on the day after the premiere of Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

Boys indoor track reenacting Star Wars; Photo Credit: Matilda Kreider
Boys indoor track reenacting Star Wars; Photo Credit: Matilda Kreider

The girls hockey team, which moves up to SCC Division I this season, had some student and teacher volunteers compete in a slapshot contest that resulted in remarkably few goals.

The cheerleading team showed off some stunts for the crowd, many of which they will use in their competition season this year.

The boys basketball team and volunteers tried to land some half-court shots, a few of which found the net and many of which did not- this, of course, only added to the entertainment factor. The girls team had a similar idea, calling up basketball-loving students and teachers like Mr. Petela and Mr. Roberts to compete in a game of Knockout. Much to Mr. Petela’s chagrin, Mr. Roberts emerged victorious.

The dance team turned a lot of heads with a sharp, high-energy performance that rivaled their past performances in the opinion of some audience members. No wonder they are one of Branford’s most prolific sports teams!

Dance team preparing to dance at Pep Rally; Photo Credit: Matilda Kreider
The dance team preparing to dance at Winter Pep Rally; Photo Credit: Matilda Kreider

Boys swimming staged a rap battle/interview with a DJ Khaled impersonator and Pitbull impersonator. Mr. Cintron, who was roped into playing Pitbull, had only line as DJ Khaled stole the show.

Finally, the boys hockey team brought up volunteers for a mini pie-eating contest that soon turned physically competitive- no fist fights broke out, but the table did start to collapse under the pie-eating pressure.

All in all, it was a successful pep rally. Perhaps the biggest hit was Branford’s brand new T-shirt cannon.

Later that same day, the Diversity Club held a holiday celebration in the library with decorations, some Santa Clauses, and holiday movies streaming all afternoon. Movies like ElfThe Polar Express, and How the Grinch Stole Christmas! drew some big crowds.

Only three days ’til winter break, and there is more fun to follow with an Ugly Sweater Contest hosted by the Yearbook staff and the Class of 2018 on Wednesday.

Fall Sports Wrap Up; Heading Into the Winter Season

By Matilda Kreider

Thanksgiving Day 2015, Photo Credit: East Haven Athletic Department

This Thursday marked the official end of the fall sports season, with the football team taking an exciting 10-7 home victory over East Haven in the 74th annual Thanksgiving Day Beehive Bowl. With this win, the team kept East Haven from qualifying for the state tournament and now leads the series 38-32-4 all-time.

Most other fall sports wrapped up in late October and early November, though the girls swimming and diving team competed in the State Open on November 21st. Here’s a re-cap of how they did:

The girls soccer team just missed qualifying for the state tournament with a record of 5-9-2, but they saw some great turnarounds throughout the season, like beating Mercy 1-0 after losing 6-1 the first time around.

The girls swimming and diving team saw success in part due to the work of a core of swimmers in captains Caitlin Daley, Erika Maercklein, and Paige MacNeil that have been making waves since freshman year. The team took 6th at the SCC Championship meet, 4th at the Class M State meet, and 14th at the State Open meet.

The boys soccer team struggled coming off of last year’s Class L co-championship, as the team graduated most of its starting players. The team finished with a 3-9-4 record and will look to developing in the future.

The field hockey team had a successful season and finished with an 11-5-2 record after making it to the semifinals of the SCC tournament and the first round of the Class M State tournament. The team lost to New Canaan in the first round but got some validation when New Canaan went on to win the tournament. A highlight of the season was a 3-2 victory over rival and 2014 SCC and Class M champion Daniel Hand.

The girls cross country team ran to victory as it often does, taking 6th at the SCC Championship meet and 7th at the Class MM State meet. Runners like Cyrene Nicholas, Anneliese Troidle, and Courtney Cosgrove helped the team secure its 10th consecutive Oronoque Division title and finish the regular season with a 6-3 record.

The boys cross country team lost some key runners in the class of 2014 but managed to continue succeeding with the help of runners like Andrew Byrne, Spencer Marriotti, and Marshall Borrus. The team finished with a 5-4 regular season record and took 12th at the SCC meet and 15th at the Class MM meet.

The football team had a wildly successful campaign compared to its seasons in recent years. After losing 4 tough games to start the season, the team won 5 of its last 6 games and finished with a 5-5 record. Though it did not qualify for the state tournament, Coach Limone’s squad is looking like it will turn things around for Branford football in the future.

The volleyball team kept the wins coming this fall, finishing with a 16-9 record. The team took a share of the Oronoque Division title, made it to the semifinal of the SCC tournament, and won one game in the Class L tournament before losing to #1 seed RHAM, who would become the runners-up of the tournament.

After an exciting season, we now move to the winter sports season. Practice starts tomorrow for girls basketball and games for all teams begin not too long after that! Check @BranfordBuzz on Twitter for updates as those scores start rolling in.

Thrilling Dodgeball Tourney Hits the Mark

By Marshall Borrus

It’s that time of the year: Halloween decorations, leaves falling off trees, and a dodgeball tournament.

Friday marked the Branford Dodgeball Association’s first tournament, and it was the most exciting yet. A total of 18 teams from all grades were entered, each with their own teacher. Polemini the Slugger was such a hot commodity this year he found himself on two separate teams. Other honorable mentions include underdog Park’s Angels making it to the semifinals and Talpey’s crew pulling it together at the last second to make a quick turnaround into the quarterfinals.

Opening Rounds

The tournament started with 18 teams and single elimination games. Those who couldn’t quite make the grade fell quick. The first teams to face off in the arena were those of Briganti and Gruendel, with Briganti victorious. They eventually made their way into the quarterfinals where they suffered a saddening loss.

In the following rounds, we saw numerous heroic dives, but to little avail. Most notably, Rome McColl of Team Gluck risked life and limb to turn up the heat on his court. Seeing a stray ball and seizing his moment, valiant McColl dove into the line of fire to secure the ball and provide a quick turnover. Much to his surprise, he was quickly pegged without seeing contact on his part. Sporting a similarly great play, Greg Bradshaw of Talpey’s Crew changed the dynamic of his team’s first game with a late match catch and ending it with a curve ball to the side of John McColl’s head.

Moving into the Quarterfinals the playable area was reduced to one court. As spectators encircled the battling teams, one could feel the tension. Hopes. Dreams. Foam balls. All balancing on the fragile line separating these elite teams.

Rizzi and his group – the Palluzzi Prodigies – made sure to bring out the claws this time and found success once again, advancing to the semifinals against Polemeni. This was the round where we saw Bradshaw fall, noting, “It was heartbreaking to get knocked out, but was overall fun.”

Wullaert and his team, sporting all white and bandanas, continued to play very dominantly, controlling the field, and advancing to the semis with ease where they would face Park’s Angels.

Semifinals

Palluzzi Prodigies and Polemeni Pummelers. Wullaert Bandanas and Park’s Angels. In the first match, Polemeni put up a strong fight against Rizzi but we saw Rizzi come through once again to get the win.

Although earlier feigning questions on how he viewed the strength of his team, Park and his squad stood against Wullaert’s fast-paced players. Despite earlier key catches by Jessie O’Connor, they were not able to stay afloat without the towering Park (who earlier was pegged as he wrestled for the first balls of the game). Sophie Angelo described their performance saying, “Mr. Park was the glue that held us together.”

The Finals

In the final round of the tournament the Palluzzi Prodigies (Kory King, Jake Jacobson, Jay Sullivan, Mikey White, and Ryan Sember) met the Wullaert Bandanas (Mitchell Petrillo, Nick Cordero, Harrison Smith, Scott Klouda, and Brennan Beauton) for gold and glory.

Both teams played their best, but only one could come out on top. Catches were abundant from Sullivan and Jacobson, with Mikey White ducking and dodging everything thrown at him. Kory King, his arm (cannon, if you will) gifting The Palluzzi Prodigies the winning shot, secured the title after an exhilarating match.

King described his emotions after clinching the win for his team: “I would like to say that my performances during the exhibition rounds were decent but during the final-round I really came out strong. This is the most fun I’ve ever had at high school… Well that is debatable, but still, we are the champions,” he said. “I just put a lot of time and effort into this training, getting prepared, and conditioning for the dodgeball tournament which shows. This is what we are; this is what we do it for.”

Return of Pep Rally Rouses Crowd

By Matilda Kreider

The fall sports season got off to a rousing start Friday with a school-wide pep rally.

Reinstated this year after a brief hiatus last spring, this fall pep rally was a little different than those of past years. It took place in the gym and included athletes tossing BHS T-shirts to the crowd, and it was required by the administration that skits be more appropriate and less time-consuming than they had been before. Still, the teams and the other students and faculty managed to have some fun.

Boys and girls cross country, two teams known for bringing the house down with their pop culture-related performances, started the pep rally off with a pillow fight modeled off of Taylor Swift’s “Bad Blood” music video. Math teacher Mr. Stonier also got roped into the battle. Sophie Angelo, Cyrene Nicholas, Anneliese Troidle, Marshall Borrus, and Spencer Marriotti are the teams’ captains.

Football captains Zach Degoursey, Noah Degoursey, Luke Distasio , and Jake Roberts came up to talk about their season and brought up the rest of the team. They were followed by cheerleading captains Adjhani Benbow and Emily Weston and the rest of the team, who will be saving their flips and tricks for the winter pep rally.

Unified Sports, a team made up of athletes with and without intellectual and physical disabilities, was led by Alyssa Sachs, Katherine Salvatore, and Victoria Suppa. The team entertained the crowd with a performance of the “Cotton Eye Joe.”

The girls’ soccer team, led by captains Issy Bysiewicz, Carolyn Caminear, and Jessie O’Connor, came up next and got the crowd pepped up with a cheer. Next was a military-inspired routine from the field hockey team. Captains Kenya Claude, Emma Dwyer, Carol Frye, Keira Integlia, Matilda Kreider, and Annie Rapini and chemistry teacher Dr. Chen were the “military leaders,” so to speak. The beloved Dr. Chen was a big hit with the crowd.

Girls swimming and diving captains Caitlin Daley, Paige MacNeil, and Erika Maercklein led their team in a dance medley that began with a synchronized swimming routine and turned into the popular dance “the Quan.” Math teacher Mr. Roberts impressed the crowd with his dancing skills.

The volleyball team also danced to a medley of songs ranging from the “Caillou” theme song to “Who Run the World (Girls)” by Beyoncé. A highlight was seeing sophomore Erin O’Brien dressed as Caillou, the little boy featured in a popular children’s cartoon show. Seniors Abby Atkinson, Gillian Basilicato, Nashalie Bayona, Madison D’Onofrio, and Sarah Wirtz introduced the team.

Finally, the boys’ soccer team, captained by Dylan Demaio and Nick Roca, led an entertaining game in which participants spun around in a circle several times and then tried to kick a soccer ball at a target on the wall. Lots of wipeouts and some successful goals came from the many student and teacher volunteers.

Congratulations to everyone on a successful pep rally and good luck with your seasons.

Athletes Making Video to Promote Sportsmanship

By Damien Maniscalco and Mike White

School officials recently came together to raise awareness about sportsmanship throughout high schools in the area.

Sportsmanship is an aspiration that a sport or activity will be enjoyed for its own sake, with consideration for fairness, ethics, respect, and a sense of fellowship with one’s competitors.

Branford High School wants to show students how they express and demonstrate it, said Principal Lee Panagoulias. Panagoulias, along with the video production class has come up with an idea to show how the act of sportsmanship affects the school by creating an informational video.

Captains of some of the sports here will be the ones starring in the video. Many of them know that sportsmanship is a big idea throughout high school sports.

“The sportsmanship at our school represents who we are. We all take it into consideration and root for our teams in a respectful manner, but also in a way to pump the team up.” Says Tyler Criscuolo, Senior Captain for the boys hockey team.

Learning good sportsmanship means finding that positive attitude learned on the field or court – or even at a pep rally – that carries over into other areas of life. At school, for example, students are able to appreciate the contributions made by classmates and know how to work as part of a team to complete a project. By creating this video “We hope it will start a conversation, and with this it will raise awareness to show that the town of Branford as a whole portrays good sportsmanship,” said Mr. Panagoulias.

An act of good sportsmanship is positive and sends off a good vibe. And there’s bad sportsmanship which sends off a bad vibe and can start trouble.

Fan sections usually are known for having bad sportsmanship in order to get into the other teams head. Fan sections start bad chants to distract and upset the other team so there team does better on the court or field. This gives the fan section and the school that they represent a bad reputation. But if a fan section only expresses good sportsmanship towards the opposing teams, it would give everybody they represent a good name.

BHS knows the good and the bad sides of Sportsmanship and are making this video to well educate everybody else. Branford portrays how they act and how people should act and as Mr. Panagoulias says “how to be a fan not a fanatic!”

Turnaround: Football Claims Division Crown, Notches Third Win

By Ryan Connell

The Branford Football team defeated Hillhouse 20-18 on Friday to capture a share of the SCC Division 2 West Division title.

A team who failed to win a game last year has turned things around and has bolstered three wins already this season along with a share of the division title. It is Branford’s third Division 2 West title, and first since 2009.

According to Senior Captain Owen Karsmarski, “It was a great all-around team effort. One of our goals this year was to win our division, and we accomplished that.”

Against Hillhouse, the offense generated 20 points, thanks to three touchdown passes from Sophomore Quarterback Griffin Lynch.

The defense came up with key turnovers including an interception right before halftime as Hillhouse was driving deep in Branford territory.

Finally, the special teams started most drives with good returns on kickoffs and punts which set up the hornets in great field position.

With two games left for the Hornets they currently stand with a record of 3-6. They host the Titans of Sheehan High School this Thursday November 20th at 6:30.

It is senior night for the Hornets, so come out and support.

The last game on this year’s campaign is the Thanksgiving clash with rival East Haven. That game will be held Thursday November 27th at 10 a.m. at East Haven High School.

Come out and support the football team as they look to add a few more victories to their season.