Spencer leads way for Hornets

Connecticut Post (Sunday) - - High Schools - By Dan Nowak

MIL­FORD — The Bran­ford and Hand girls lacrosse teams have a long his­tory of play­ing ex­cit­ing, hard­fought close games and their matchup in the CIAC Class Mcham­pi­onship game on Satur­day con­tin­ued that trend.

So­phie Spencer scored the Hornets’ last three goals and ended up with five over­all and Daly Hynes had 10 saves to lead No. 2 Bran­ford to an 11- 8 win over No. 1 Hand at Law High for the Hornets’ sec­ond straight Class M ti­tle.

“This was a huge win, it’s al­ways huge when you get a win over Hand,” Spencer said. “Hand is a great team. They took a 2- 0 lead but lacrosse is a game of runs. It was early at that point and we knew it wasn’t a big deal to be be­hind two goals. We knew we would have a run or two of our own.

“This was an emo­tional game and to win two ti­tles in a row is amaz­ing. We made his­tory last year win­ning our first ti­tle and made his­tory to­day with our sec­ond ti­tle.”

Ha­ley Maer­ck­lein added two goals and Au­tumn McHenry and Erin O’Brien each added a goal and an as­sist for the Hornets ( 19- 3).

“This ti­tle to­day means a lot to all of us,” Bran­ford coach Jackie Cec­col­ini said. “It’s re­ally a com­mu­nity ef­fort with the play­ers and their par­ents that started years ago. So­phie came up big time as she al­ways does and those last three goals were big for us.

“But Au­tumn ( McHenry) win­ning draws, Karly King do­ing a great job mark­ing ( Hand’s) Tay­lor Scully and Daly Hynes com­ing up with some big saves added to the strong ef­fort that ev­ery­one gave us.”

The wild first half set the tone for the game early and of­ten with both teams putting to­gether mul­ti­ple scor­ing runs. Emma Sul­li­van gave the Tigers a 2- 0 lead with 22: 15 to go in the first half.

The Hornets re­sponded with a 6- 0 run with Erin O’Brien giv­ing Bran­ford a 6- 2 lead with 15: 21 to go in the half.

The Tigers an­swered with a 3- 0 run to get within a goal when Chloe Sul­li­van scored to trim the Hand lead to 6- 5 with 4: 15 to go.

Sab­rina Tor­cellini and McHenry gave the Tigers an 8- 5 lead and Ri­ley Koko­ruda scored for Hand with 7 sec­onds left in the half for an 8- 6 half­time score.

Glenna- Kate Gies opened the sec­ond half with a goal for Hand to trim Bran­ford’s lead to 8- 7. But Spencer scored the next three goals for an 11- 7 lead with 3: 29 left in the game and the Tigers never re­cov­ered.

An emo­tional Hand coach Kevin Siedlecki said it was a typ­i­cal tough, close game be­tween the teams.

“We were down four goals to them in the reg­u­lar sea­son and came back to win, it just wasn’t meant to be to­day,” Siedlecki said. “I have to give a big sigh be­cause I just feel so bad for my seniors. I re­ally wanted this for them so bad. Our play­ers played their butts off to­day.

“This was a great game be­tween two great teams, two of the best teams in the SCC and in Class M. Bran­ford’s goalie was phe­nom­e­nal and made some big saves. Our play­ers never gave and fought un­til the last sec­onds. I am so proud of all them.”

Gies led the Tigers ( 19- 3) with two goals and four as­sists and Koko­ruda added two goals. Macken­zie Lar­son had five saves.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.