Sports Shorts

By Joe Gonillo

It has taken a while, but we are finally in the last school week of 2014. Here comes Christmas, Christmas break, and New Year’s. Feel free to count down the days, but make sure not to go on vacation early. The Hornets played some great games last week. This week’s schedule is full while the vacation schedule, both games and practices, will keep coaches and players busy … but with time to celebrate the holidays.


The boys’ hockey team, 1-1, won their first game of the season against BFA 3-2 in dramatic fashion Saturday night. With less than 30 seconds to play in overtime in a 2-2 game Mike Croce fed Joey Robertson who slid his way through the Bobwhite defense to score the game-winner. Seniors’s Brendan Gleason and Croce scored staking Essex to a 2-0 advantage. Goalkeeper Erik Short stopped 30 shots.

The girls’ hockey team was snowed out last week vs. Northfield. They played a New York doubleheader over the weekend splitting two games. Essex lost 3-1 to Beekmantown on Friday then beat Massena 3-2. Kathleen Young scored Essex’s lone goal in the loss. On Saturday they fought hard – like in last year’s state final – and overcame a 2-0 deficit after the first period to win. Young lit the lamp two times, including the game winner with less than one minute to play. Amanda Sinkewicz got kick-started our offense with a goal in the second period. Kathleen’s game winning goal made the top 3-on-3 on WCAX.

Check it out:

At are 2-1 they play South Burlington, coached by former EHS hockey assistant, Jake “the Snake” Orr who had a remarkable career as an Essex athlete. He heads the boys’ JV soccer team and the CHS golf team where he is an IA – hopefully to be a full-time teacher soon. They host Lake Placid this weekend.


The boys’ basketball team defeated South Burlington 44-38 for win number two then clubbed Brattleboro 57-49 for number three. The Hornets led early and then big in the second quarter. The Colonels bombed their way back into the game, took the lead in the final period before Essex heated up and inched away for the win. Eli DiGrande netted 19 points. Against Rutland they absorbed their first loss, 66-56, and are 3-1. In that game DiGrande had 20 while Scott Lyon and Jackson Dwyer scored 11 points each. The Raiders hit the boards hard and were 9-11 from the free throw line in the fourth quarter alone to seal the win. The boys play at Rice and down Route 7 at MAU this week.

The JV’s beat South Burlington to notch win number one last week. They followed that up with a win over Brattleboro and a five-point loss in Rutland. The freshman evened their record at 1-1 with a blowout of Burlington 68-48. Rice, South Burlington, Spaulding and Rutland are on the schedule until Jan. 1, 2015.

The girls’ basketball team was snowed out at St. Johnsbury last week. Game is back on schedule in the middle of January. The Hornets traveled south to Rutland Saturday and continued to play solid defense in 41-38 win. They blew out to a 27-8 halftime lead, but the Raiders cut it to two at 35-33 in the fourth period.

Emily Goodrich and Hanna Couture each scored eight points. Mychaela Hatton chipped in with seven points, going 3-4 at free throw line in the final quarter. They are 2-0 and will battle South Burlington at home and once again head south to MAU on Saturday. Colchester, Burlington and St. Johnsbury are up next week. They host Rice on Jan. 2, 2015. The JV’s won 44-30 and are 2-0 too.


The varsity wrestlers traveled to Herkimer Invitational in New York and placed 15th out of 18 teams. Jeremy Jarvis was fourth at 132 while Jack Carney was 3-2 falling one round short of placing. Keeping it all in the family the Leo boys placed in the JV and Warrior tourney. The JV wrestled at Otter Valley and went 25-17 in all their matches. The Hornets had four first-place finishers; three second-place finishers; four third-place finishers; and two fourth-place finishers. Keeping it all in the family the Leo boys placed in the JV and Warrior tourney.


Our gymnastic team did a nice job in their opening meet. Senior Captain Emily Douglas placed third on Vault and Bars in the senior division, and Senior Captain Haley Sullivan placed second on vault and sixth on beam. Junior Abbie Evans took second on bars. Kylie Svarczkopf took first place on vault and first place on bars for the sophomore division. Abbie Gehsmann placed second on vault and second on beam. Lindsey Gleason placed third on beam and fouth on Vault in the sophomore division. Mya Dusablon and Jenna Puleo tied for first place on bars for the freshman division while Allie Green was third for a “1, 2, 3”-sweep. Anna Charland placed fourth on beam for the freshman division. Home meet Thursday evening.

Indoor Track

The boys’ and girls’ track team performed will in meet number one Saturday at UVM. The first event began a little after 9:15 a.m. as athletes gathered for the weight throw. All Vermont high schools were invited. The mile relays clocked in a bit before 5 p.m. The Hornets had some good, beginning performances from their veterans and from some rookies as well. Highlights include: Kyle Baker winning the pole vault, 12-6, and the long jump, 17-8; Sade Hankey the high jump, 5-2; Martin Deutsch the two-mile, 11:16.7; Rose Monahan the mile, 5:30.9; Madison Stephenson the 55-meter high hurdle 9.54. Second places were held by Stephenson in the long jump; Lucy Sopchak in the 55-meter; Marissa Minadeo in the 55-meter high hurdles. Third places went to: Chike Asanya in the 55-meter; Jessica Stowe in the 300-meter; Katie James in the 600-meter; Charlotte Murphy in the mile; Sopchak in the high jump. The team heads back to the Gutterson Fieldhouse Saturday, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., to compete vs. Chittenden County schools. Their next meet will be Jan. 3, 2015.


The alpine ski ream is ready to hit Bolton Friday to kickoff their season. The Nordic ski races were in Craftsbury last week and they head to Sleepy Hollow this week.


Watch this … I don’t think I have used this line:

The bowling team is rolling! They won their four-team match on Saturday against South Burlington, Spaulding and Lyndon. It was an exciting finish when we beat Spaulding in the finals. Individual scores as follows: Reid Kamhi 123, 122; Sabrina Liguori 139, 124; Andrew Benoit 142, 204; Reese Meunier 145, 110; Brian Cookingham 139, 167; Mike Prim 161, 214; Ryan Ploof 157, 192; and Tyler Richards 195, 258** high game in the match.

Julian Brian Taylor

Congratulations to Language teacher Ashley Bry and her husband Curtis on their new baby, a son, Julian Brian Taylor who was born Thursday. He weighed in at 7 pounds and was 20 inches long. Everyone is fine.


Last Thursday following our snow day, a handful of young musicians traveled down to Boston’s Children Hospital to support and play with their fellow violinist. Nine-year-old Sophie Fellows, of Colchester, fell sick in a recent Christmas concert. Doctors later diagnosed a brain tumor and whisked her off to Boston. Her group decided to give her the opportunity to complete her concert. Many of the students are from Essex and EHS. For a closer look at this heartwarming story visit

Early Christmas

Had a wonderful weekend as our son, daughter, and granddaughter celebrated an early Christmas. Toss in a couple of nieces, a walk through a beautifully lit EJRP, a delicious brunch put together by my wife, my brother and his family … and we had it all. Missing my mom as she looks to get well.


Extremely sad news: CVU AD Kevin Reill passed away over the weekend. He and some Vermont athletic directors were attending a national conference in Washington, D.C. He was a logical, fair and friendly guy who always was positive. He will be missed.