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Freshman Bella Hills threw a one-hitter in the North Branford softball team’s 12-0 win over Old Saybrook last week. The T-Birds went on to defeat Hale-Ray and clinch a Class M State Tournament berth. (Photo by Kelley Fryer/The Sound | Buy This Photo)
Sophomore Tyler DiNapoli and the T-Birds had a good week that featured victories against Haddam-Killingworth and Foran. The team now has a record of 6-4 on the year. (Photo by Kelley Fryer/The Sound | Buy This Photo)
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The North Branford softball squad won both of its games last week to improve to 8-3 and clinch its spot in the Class M State Tournament. North Branford made states by winning big over Shoreline Conference opponents Old Saybrook and Hale-Ray in last week’s games
On April 24, the T-Birds shut out Old Saybrook by the final score of 12-0. Freshman Bella Hills tossed a one-hitter with just one walk to go with eight strikeouts for North Branford. Junior Kayla Despres had four hits and three RBI, while senior captain Angelina Ramada had three hits with three RBI and two runs scored. Freshman Maissa Caso contributed three hits and three RBI, and sophomore Jada Miconi drove in two runs.
The following afternoon, the Thunderbirds qualified for states by earning a 13-2 win versus Hale-Ray. Senior Kaylee Velez scattered six hits in a complete game performance to earn the victory on the mound. Sophomore Erica Piercey four hits with two RBI, and senior captain Amy Raucci had three hits, including a home run, to go with two RBI. Miconi also clubbed a home run and drove in three runs. Despres finished with a pair of hits, plus Ramada and junior Katy Pederson both drove in two.
The T-Birds stayed undefeated by claiming a pair of recent victories and now have a record of 9-0 on the season. North Branford defeated Shoreline Conference foes Old Lyme and Haddam-Killingworth last week, scoring double-digit goals in both contests.
On April 23, North Branford hosted Old Lyme and won an 11-5 decision. Senior captain Jessie Kilburn scored five goals and had two assists, while junior Ali Barrett netted three goals and added an assist. Junior Gabby Gibilisco, junior Sally Cucinotta, and freshman Olivia Toto each scored a goal, plus Toto had two assists. Senior captain Jordan Regan, senior Cayleen Defaranos, and junior captain Avonlea LeBeau all had an assist in the win. Junior netminder Carly Sorrentino made eight saves for North Branford.
Two days later, the T-Birds defeated H-K by the final tally of 18-5.
North Branford improved to 6-4 by winning two of its three matchups last week. The T-Birds lost on the road versus Old Lyme, but then won back-to-back home games against Haddam-Killingworth and Foran.
On April 23, North Branford took a 9-8 loss to Old Lyme. The Wildcats won the game after scoring seven goals during the third quarter. Sophomore Tyler DiNapoli scored five goals with an assist, and junior Nate Raymond netted a pair of goals for North Branford. Senior Jake Montanaro scored a goal, while fellow senior Dylan Martinik had an assist. Junior captain Xavior Cognata and senior Alex Grimm combined to make 10 saves in net.
Two days later, North Branford edged out Haddam-Killingworth by a 12-11 score. Junior Peter Ablondi-Taylor led the way with five goals and an assist for the T-Birds. DiNapoli and senior Nick Barrett each had two goals with an assist. Martinik handed out three helpers, Raymond found the back of the net two times, and Montanaro scored a goal. Cognata recorded six saves in the victory.
To wrap up the week, the Thunderbirds defeated Foran 13-9 in a non-conference game on April 27. Cognata had a huge game in goal by recording 16 saves in the victory. Ablondi-Taylor also had a big day with eight goals to go with one assist. DiNapoli scored two goals, while Martinik and Barrett scored one goal apiece. Raymond had two assists, and Martinik finished with one.
The T-Birds stand at 8-3 after winning one of their three matches last week.
On April 23, North Branford lost a match at Old Lyme by a 4-3 final. The next day, the T-Birds took a 4-3 defeat versus Westbrook. The Thunderbirds closed out their week by posting a 7-0 victory at Portland on April 25.
North Branford lost two matchups last week to move to 0-4 this season.
On April 23, the Thunderbirds were on the road to face Valley Regional at Black Hall Club and lost by the score of 236-254. Two days later, North Branford hosted Portland at Indian Springs Golf Club and dropped a 168-232 decision. Freshman Dakota Cooper shot a 41, senior Nick DeNegre scored a 59, freshman Blake Pearson finished with a 66, and freshman Ryan Monde also turned in a 66 for the Thunderbirds on the round.
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