Hope your Memorial Day weekend was enjoyable as we remember those who serve and served. Marathon and Essex Invite last week. Playoffs, the postseason and a huge state championship track and field meet highlight this week. June rolls in bringing 70’s and 80’s temps with it. NHL and NBA in finals. You can almost see the end of school in sight. SAT test this Saturday. Check the athletic website and team homepages for rankings, playoff games, times and sites.

Essex Track and Field, AD Jeff Goodrich, assistant AD Todd Herrington, head coach Katie White, her staff, meet director Pavel Dvorak and his crew, Jeremy Hammond, all workers/officials, Dave Rich and all maintenance staff involved and Rich Celia did an outstanding with the 15th annual Essex Invitational. Doubling as the Vt. New England Qualifier, the top six place finishers are moving on to the New England Championships at UNH next weekend. Hornets first place finishers include the girls’ 4x100m relay team – Kat Morin, Nejla Hadzic, Morgan Whitney, Arianna Moffatt 50.89; Jamaal Hankey – 300m IH 40.16; and Ryan Guerino – LJ 21’ 7.25”. Other Hornet qualifiers are Jacob Rigoli Shot 2nd 47’ 6.5” and 4th Discus 134’ 6”; Spencer Towle 2nd 200m 23.16; Breyer Sinor Discus 2nd 142’ 3” and Shot 4th 41’ 11.5”; Henry Farrington 1500m 4:06.73; Lizzie Martell 2nd 400m 59.09 and 200m 4th ; Hadzic 2nd 300m LH 49.09; boys’ 4x100m relay 2nd; Jackson Baker 3rd HJ 5’ 6”; Ali Green 4th 100m HH 16.96; Hannah Neddo 4th TJ 34’ 8.5”; t:4th PV 7’ 6”; girls’ mile relay 4th; Peyer Alden 3000m 9:01.71; Hannah Poquette 5th 100m HH 17.03. Congratulations. The teams travel to Burlington all day Saturday for the 2018 state meet where the boys will be in a dogfight with Mt. Mansfield Union and St. Johnsbury while the girls will be trying to stop the Hilltoppers from repeating again.

The boys’ lacrosse team had a huge week. The Hornets went 2-0 to complete an 11-5 season. A HUGE 8-7 win over number one and previously unbeaten CVU and a 13-9 win at BHS. In the back-and-forth win in Hinesburg (their biggest W this year and maybe in the last three years) the Red Hawks scored to tie the game with 2:30 left. Less than 30 seconds later Jonah Janaro scored on a feed from Grady Corkum. While running the clock down under a minute, two Essex shots on goal went just wide and led to a CVU fast break, 1 on 0, but goalkeeper Aidan Haggerty came up with the save of the spring, and our boys ran out the clock for the win. Check out WCAX video on their website when you get a moment. The team ended winning 9 of their last 11 games. Down by two at the half vs the Seahorses Sam Bowen tied the game, and Jordan Hines dropped in the game-winning goal. Corkum scored two goals and had two assists, Chris LaBonte scored twice and added an assist, Luke Meunier and Cam Frankenhoff also connected for a couple of scores each. Haggerty made five saves. The Hornets should be ranked anywhere from second to fourth for the postseason.

The girls’ lacrosse team went 2-2 and finished the spring 6-9 going 5-4 in their last nine games. They fell to Burr & Burton and CVU but defeated Rice 10-5 and Colchester 24-16. In their senior night game vs the Red Hawks Jenna Puleo fired in 4 goals, Abby Robbins 2, Maya Boyers and Abby Gleason 1 each in the Senior Night loss to the top-seeded Red Hawks. Bella Rieley had 5, Becca Provost 3, and Lydia Maitland 2g 1a for CVU. Felt like a proud father, though actually an uncle, when my niece Madison Peet registered an assist for red in that game. Varsity’s goal explosion vs the Lakers was their most scores all spring! The JV’s defeated Rice, lost 8-6 to CVU, and dropped CHS 13-3 to finish the season 9-5.

Youth lax played at halftime, and Team White got byTeam Red 4-1. Future Hornets who scored include Lily Boutin, Abby Lacross, Ella Gibbs, Ash.ey Stempek, and Breya Montague. Beeca and Jenna Hirschman alongside with Maddy Larson also played well.

The baseball team went 2-3 last week and heads into the playoffs at 9-7. Essex bounced North Country 10-3 and edged South Burlington 5-3 before losing to BFA St. Albans in their regular season finale. In the win over the Falcons Michael Barnett slammed 3 hits and 4 RBIs, Garrett Somerset slugged his 4th HR of the spring, Mav King 2B’ed and added 2 hits, and Grady Cram knocked in 2 runs. Anthony Hope got the win. Against the Bobwhites King, Ryan Young, and Garrett Somerset all had 2 hits. Check website for post season specifics.

The softball team completed a magical 16-0 regular season going 3-0 with wins over NCUHS, SB, and BFA. In their win over the Falcons Sarah Knickerbocker mashed a three-run HR to top a 6-run inning. WP Caitlin Toth pitched four innings and Logan Pollard three. Emily Harvey banged out 3 hits, and Jamie Morin had 2 hits and 2 RBIs. In their season finale, a 9-0 blanking of BFA, the Hornets blew past an old nemesis with relative ease. Toth pitched a beauty of a game K’ing out 6 and did not walk a batter. Knickerbocker had 3 hits including a 2-run HR, a 2B and 3 RBIs. MaKenna Thorne crushed a HR and had 3 RBI’s, Morin added 3 hits and RBI, and Molly Bruyns chipped in with 2 hits. On to the playoffs.

The boys’ tennis team went 2-0 stopping St. J 5-2 and MMU 6-1. With an 11-1 record they rank second to Stowe as playoffs begin. The girls are 7-5 after their 2-0 week beating the Hilltoppers 4-3 and the Cougars 6-1. They look to be slated seventh in the postseason.

Congratulations to the number one tennis player in the state, Preston Gordon, who defended his individual title by beating CVU’s Josh Ashooh by 6-0, 6-1 scores. EHS has won eight singles titles which is the most in the state.

Rugby senior game is Thursday vs SB under the lights at 8 p.m.

Coach Montague and players from the girls’ basketball program are excited to offer the 2018 edition of Hornet Hoop Camp (June 25-29) located at Essex High School. Please register by June 1. Email Coach Shawn Montague at smontague@ewsd.org and go here for more information.

Happy Birthday wishes rolling out to Pavel Dvorak, Auntie Irma Kukavica, Jenn Ligouri, Diane Auger, pilot Costa Tzavaras, Amy Smith, former track all-stars/state champions Dave Allard and Orhan “Big O” Smailhodzic, Michelle Lynn, Dan Tomaino, Hannah Maslak. Special shout out to my son and daughter Josh and Karen Gonillo as they celebrate this weekend as well. Presents on their way!