Boston High School: U-32

New England Roundup: Vermont

May, 16, 2013
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The Rochester girls’ softball team was outscored 50-2 on May 4, when it lost both ends of a doubleheader against West Rutland. Rochester dropped the first game, 27-1, and lost the second contest, 23-1.

VermontA 19-2 loss to Rivendell Academy on Monday dropped the team's Division IV record to 0-7, but the news hasn't been all bad.

The doubleheader against West Rutland marked the first time Rochester had played a game at home since Hurricane Irene ruined the school's softball field in 2011.

“It was awesome to be out there,” Rochester coach Lisa Blair told The Burlington Free Press. “The players were just so excited to finally play there. The girls get a better field.”

Rochester, which won the Division IV state title in 2011, traveled to each of its games last season while a new field was constructed. Rochester's field now features a new electronic scoreboard.

LAMOTHE RETURNS TO HOME FIELD
Former Lyndon Institute pitcher Buddy Lamothe was honored before Lyndon's baseball game against Montpelier last week.

Lamothe, who led the Vikings to the Division II state title in 2009, suffered a spinal cord injury during a swimming accident two years ago that left him paralyzed from the waist down. Lamothe was playing for San Jacinto College in Texas when he was injured.

Lamothe had a 0.77 ERA with 28 strikeouts in 23 1/3 innings for San Jacinto. He was drawing interest from professional teams before the injury, and the Houston Astros picked Lamothe in the 40th round that year after the accident occurred.

MOVING UP
Girls’ lacrosse will likely have a new look next season.

The Vermont Principals' Association has proposed that BFA-St. Albans, Burr and Burton and Rice move from Division II to Division I starting in 2014. Rice and U-32 were both unbeaten after six games this season. Rice was 4-1-1.

If the proposal is approved, those three teams would join Brattleborough, Burlington, Champlain Valley Union, Essex, Middlebury, Mount Anthony, Mount Mansfield, Rutland, South Burlington and Spaulding in Division I.

Division II would have 15 teams: Chelsea, Colchester, Green Mountain Valley, Hartford, Harwood, Lamoille, Montpelier, Oxbow, Randolph, St. Johnsbury, Stowe, Stratton, U-32, Vergennes and Woodstock.

REPEAT PERFORMANCE?
The Essex softball team won the 2012 Division I state championship, and may be the team to beat again this season.

At 7-0, Essex is the only unbeaten team in Division I. The Hornets have outscored their opponents 83-17 in their seven victories.

TOUGH TO HIT
"Kayla Wood didn't allow a hit through nine innings of the Brattleborough softball team's season opener against Hartford, but the scoreless game was suspended in the 10th inning. Wood will try to complete her no-hit pitching performance when the suspended game resumes on May 29.

"Randolph Rachel Johnson had thrown two no-hitters through her team's first four games this season. Johnson, a sophomore, didn't allow a hit in victories over South Royalton and U-32.

Roger Brown is a staff writer for the New Hampshire Union Leader and has been covering high school sports throughout New England since 1992.

New England Roundup: Vermont

March, 29, 2013
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March was a pretty good month for Missisquoi Valley Union's Matt St. Amour.

VermontAfter being selected as Vermont's Gatorade Player of the Year for boys basketball, St. Amour finalized his college plans by choosing to continue his basketball career at Division III Middlebury College. St. Amour's other options included walking on at the University of Vermont.

"I've always been a Vermont kid and I felt I always wanted to continue to play in front of my Vermont fans," St. Amour told the Burlington Free Press. "UVM would have been a great opportunity, always been one of my dreams to play for them, but I feel Middlebury was a better fit."

St. Amour, a 6-foot-3 guard, was also named the state's Gatorade Player of the Year as a junior. He averaged 30.7 points, 11.9 rebounds, 5.7 assists and 3.4 steals per game as a senior, when he helped the Thunderbirds (13-9) reach the Division I quarterfinals. He completed his high school career as the No. 3 scorer in state history (2,064 points).

Middlebury has qualified for the NCAA Division III tournament in each of the last six years. The Panthers reached the quarterfinals this season, and finished with a 25-4 record.

"Middlebury told me I was their No. 1 option all along,” St. Amour said. “I know I can be an important role on their team. I felt they were interested in wanting me to play there," St. Amour said. "Middlebury doesn't like to lose that much and that's something that I enjoy.

"I plan on having a successful career and win a national championship -- that's definitely a goal."

TWIN-STATE GAMES MAY RETURN
After the Vermont boys and girls played New Hampshire in the 2010 Twin State All-Star Senior Basketball Classic, many thought the event was dead and buried.

The games lacked interest – primarily on the New Hampshire side – and sponsors became hard to find. Vermont recently received a commitment from the New Hampshire Basketball Coaches' Association, however, and the event may return as soon as this summer. Representatives from each state are scheduled to meet in April in an attempt to bring the games back to life.

The Twin State Classic has always been a doubleheader with the top girls basketball players from each state facing one another before the boys game. The games were last held at the University of Vermont's Patrick Gymnasium.

The New Hampshire boys and girls teams each hold an 18-12 edge in the series.

SHRINE ROSTER RELEASED
There are still three spots to fill on the Vermont Shrine Maple Sugar Bowl team, but a preliminary roster was released in mid-March. Vermont will play New Hampshire on Aug. 3 (5:30 p.m.) at Dartmouth College's Memorial Field. It will be the first night game in the event's history.

Jason Thomas of Burr & Burton Academy is Vermont's head coach. Mascoma Regional's Ray Kershaw is coaching New Hampshire's.

New Hampshire won last summer's game 62-24 to extend its winning streak to 12 games. New Hampshire leads the series 44-13-2.

Vermont roster: Zachary Rawling (Bellows Falls), Zachary Tarvit (Bellows Falls), Darren Callan (BFA-St. Albans), Dylan Callan (BFA-St. Albans), Lucas Kelsey (BFA-St. Albans), Doug Saffo (BFA-St. Albans), Ryan Wimble (BFA-Fairfax), Tyler Higley (Brattleboro), Billy Katon (Burlington), Chris Redding (Burr & Burton), Jake Stalcup (Burr & Burton), Alec Distler (Champlain Valley), Harvey Ottinger (Champlain Valley), Bobby Brigante (Colchester), Noah MacGillivary (Essex), James Olsen (Essex), Joey Picard (Essex), Joseph Ramada (Essex), Cody Bradish (Fair Haven), Dakota Euber (Fair Haven), Josh Claflin (Hartford), Nolan Frechette (Hartford), Taylor Potter (Hartford), Walter Odell (Middlebury), Wade Steele (Mount Abraham), Carter Glenn (Mount Mansfield), Dan Warnecke (Poultney), Billy O'Brien (Rice), Matthew Hock (Rutland), Jon Kilian (Spaulding), Ed Doton (Woodstock), Travis Gault (Woodstock), Jalen Peterson (Woodstock).

WINTER RECAP
Scores from the championship games in basketball and hockey:

Boys' basketball
Division I: Rice 48, St. Johnsbury
Division II: Vergennes 62, Burr & Burton 49
Division III: Williamstown 63, Thetford 39
Division IV: Rochester 68, West Rutland 43

Girls' basketball
Division I: Champlain Valley 47, Rice 42
Division II: Mount Abraham 44, BFA-Fairfax 28
Division III: Winooski 52, Williamstown 48
Division IV: Proctor 55, Arlington 38

Boys' hockey
Division I: South Burlington 4, Champlain Valley 2
Division II: U-32 5, Burr & Burton 2

Girls' hockey
Division I: BFA-St. Albans 3, Essex 0
Division II: Harwood 1, North Country 0

Roger Brown is a staff writer for the New Hampshire Union Leader and has been covering high school sports throughout New England since 1992.

New England Roundup: Vermont

January, 25, 2013
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The Hartford High School football team won the Division I state championship last season, but the team's accomplishments didn't end there.

VermontUSA Today High School Sports recently crowned Hartford as the People's Champion – the top high school football team in the nation for 2012.

The competition began Jan. 7 with 64 schools vying for a $500 prize and the chance to be named the top high school football team – as chosen by fans – of 2012. Each state, plus Washington D.C., had a representative in the competition. The highest-ranked champion in each state, as determined by the Massey computer rankings, automatically qualified for the contest. In addition, the USA Today High School Sports editorial staff chose 13 at-large teams.

Sixteen teams advanced to the second round. Hartford received 43 percent of the votes in the final round, which ended Jan. 18.

Maine Endwell (Endwell, N.Y.) finished second, Archbishop Moeller (Cincinnati) was third and Jordan (Sandy, Utah) ended up fourth.

"When you look at the numbers, you had to do well enough to get to the next round and once that happened, everyone’s imaginations started taking off," Hartford athletic director Joe James told USA Today High School Sports. "I was sending out regular email updates to folks and trying to rally the troops. The comments on the website were from all over the country. We’re such a small town and a close-knit community. There's a tremendous amount of pride."

Hartford went 11-0 last season and won their third consecutive Division I title. The Hurricanes beat Middlebury 42-6 in the championship game to cap a season in which they outscored their opponents 508-112. Hartford has won five of the last six Division I championships.

"There was a lot of buzz all over the community," James said. "We live on the border between Vermont and New Hampshire, and really, in this whole Upper Valley, there was buzz about this."

MANWARING REACHES MILESTONE
Jason Manwaring, a 6-foot-1, junior forward, became the latest Vermont player to reach the 1,000-point plateau when he tossed in 24 points during a 73-5 triumph over Rochester on Jan. 15. Manwaring also had 11 rebounds and blocked four shots in the victory.

Manwaring was averaging 18.8 points, 9.7 rebounds and 2.7 blocks through 11 games this season. Williamstown, last year's Division III champion, got off to an 11-0 start.

Manwaring became the sixth player in the program's history to score at least 1,000 points.

U-32 LOOKS LIKE A CONTENDER
The U-32 girls basketball program is coming off three consecutive losing seasons, but that streak will end this year.

U-32 opened the season with a loss to Division I Hartford, but has won nine in a row since then. Junior Madison Bennett tossed in a game-high 18 points in the team's most recent victory, Monday's 52-13 triumph over Randolph.

U-32 is one of two Division II teams with one loss. Mt. Abraham (10-1) is the other. BFA-Fairfax (10-0) is in sole possession of first place.

FAST TRACK
The South Burlington girls indoor track 4x800 relay team set a state record at the Dartmouth Relays earlier this month.

Anne-Marie Farmer, Allie Flaherty, Kayla Gilding and Katherine Cook posted a sixth-place finish in 10 minutes, 2.38 seconds. Mount Mansfield set the previous record (10:07.97) in 2011.

WOODSTOCK'S WANNOP RESIGNS
Wendy Wannop announced that she was stepping down as Woodstock's field hockey coach on Jan. 15.

Wannop had a 198-76-16 record in 30 seasons as Woodstock's coach. She guided the Wasps to three state championships, and four runner-up finishes.

Roger Brown is a staff writer for the New Hampshire Union Leader, and has been covering high school sports throughout New England.

New England Roundup: Vermont

January, 9, 2013
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When Jason Thomas became Burr and Burton Academy's head football coach in 2008, the Bulldogs had suffered through nine consecutive losing seasons. Four years later he guided Burr and Burton to the Division II championship game.

VermontThomas will face a similar challenge this summer, when he coaches Vermont's Shrine Maple Sugar Bowl team.

New Hampshire has won the last 12 meetings with Vermont, and has outscored Vermont 433-145 in those 12 games. New Hampshire set a record for points in a game last summer, when its posted a 62-24 victory and increased its lead in the series to 44-13-2.

“I'm a Vermonter, and I have a lot of pride in our state,” Thomas said. “We're small, but we have some really good football players here.

“When you look at the size difference we don't have the linemen to line up and pound it at New Hampshire. I want to play at a tempo New Hampshire is not used to.”

Thomas, who played football at the University of Massachusetts, said he learned the basics of his fast-paced offense while he was an assistant coach at the University of New Hampshire, and current Oregon head coach Chip Kelly was UNH's offensive coordinator..

“Chip really laid the foundation for me in terms of offense and what I wanted to do,” Thomas said.

Mascoma Regional's Ray Kershaw will be New Hampshire's head coach. Mascoma, which began playing varsity football in 2008, had never posted a winning record until last season, when the Royals lost to Franklin in the Division VI championship game. Kershaw became Mascoma's head coach in 2010.

“Being named New Hampshire's Shrine coach was very exciting for me,” Kershaw said. “It's a great honor because of what the game is all about [raising money for the Shriners' hospitals].”

This year's Shrine Maple Sugar Bowl will be played Aug. 3 at Dartmouth's Memorial Field. The Vermont and New Hampshire rosters will be released later this month.

One of the first players Thomas selects will likely be quarterback Jake Stalcup, a three-year starter at Burr and Burton. Stalcup was named Vermont's Gatorade Player of the Year in 2011, following his junior season.

Stalcup passed for 2,613 yards and 31 touchdowns (nine interceptions) last season. He also threw 31 touchdown passes as a junior.

“He's as steady as they come,” Thomas said. “He doesn't really get rattled. He's 6-2, 200 pounds and has a live arm. He has 'it' as a quarterback.”

Practice for this year's game has been shortened from nine days to seven. There have also been added restrictions placed on how New Hampshire must select its roster. New Hampshire's initial roster before any injuries) must feature six players from each of the state's six divisions. In past year's New Hampshire was allowed to take more players from its larger schools.

New Hampshire has 57 schools with varsity football. Vermont has 34.

“To be honest I don't care about their selection process,” Thomas said. “I want their best against our best. This seems like it gives them an excuse if we do beat them.”

ROBERE NETS 1,000TH POINT
Brianna Robare became the second Winooski girls basketball player to score 1,000 career points when she tossed in 20 during a 53-42 loss to BFA-Fairfax on Saturday.

Robare reached the milestone when she made a 3-pointer with 2:06 left in the first quarter. Robare's sister Bobbi also scored 1,000 points for Winooski.

Chace Carpenter (17 points), Kayla Baczewski (15) and Meghan Bochanski (11) scored in double figures for BFA-Fairfaix, which improved to 6-0. The Bullets trailed by two points entering the fourth quarter, but outscored Winooski 17-4 over the final eight minutes.

The loss dropped the Spartans to 5-2.

TOOF REACHES CENTURY MARK
Mount Mansfield-South Burlington girls hockey coach Mickey Toof earned his 100th career coaching victory when MMU-SB defeated Colchester last week.

Toof is in his ninth season as a head coach. He was Burlington's head coach for four years, and is now in his fifth season with South Burlington.

Toof has an overall record of 100-64-15 in nine seasons.

VERGENNES BOYS OFF TO STRONG START
The Vergennes boys basketball team made 26 of 29 two-point field goal attempts during an 87-59 triumph over U-32 during the first round of the Fran Pinard tournament on Dec. 28.

Vergennes, which lost to Mount St. Joseph in last year's Division II championship game, is off to a 10-0 start this season. The Commodores picked up victory No. 10 by beating Montpelier 53-43 Saturday.

Roger Brown is a staff writer for the New Hampshire Union Leader, and has been covering high school sports throughout New England since 1992.

New England Roundup: Vermont

October, 23, 2012
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The playoff pairings for Division I football were released this week, and there was no surprise at the top.

VermontHartford, which punctuated an unbeaten regular season by defeating Rutland 47-37 last weekend, earned the No. 1 seed. The Hurricanes own a 23-game winning streak and have won four of the last five Division I titles.

Hartford, which went 8-0 during the regular season, has outscored its opponents 284-100 this year. The Hurricanes will face eighth-seeded South Burlington in Friday's quarterfinals. It will be the fifth time in the last six years that the teams have met in the postseason. Hartford is seeking its third consecutive state championship.

Friday's quarterfinals, (all games at 7 p.m.):

No. 8 South Burlington (4-4) at No. 1 Hartford (8-0)
No. 7 Champlain Valley (5-3) at No. 2 BFA-St. Albans (7-1)
No. 6 Colchester (5-3) at No. 3 Essex (6-2)
No. 5 Middlebury (5-3) at No. 4 Rutland (5-3)

The six teams that did not qualify for postseason play will play consolation games this weekend:

Friday:

Spaulding at Mount Anthony, Friday (7 p.m.)
St. Johnsbury at Burlington, Friday (7 p.m.)
Brattleboro at Mount Mansfield, Saturday (1 p.m.)

Note: The Division II and Division III playoff pairings will be released next week.

TOURNAMENT TIME
The playoffs in each of the state's four divisions for boys' soccer, girls' soccer and field hockey begin Tuesday. A look at the contenders in each division, by sport:

Boys' soccer: Middlebury earned the No. 1 seed in Division I, but second-seeded Champlain Valley (12-1-1) may be the team to beat. CVU's Shane Haley scored 20 goals during the regular season. … Montpelier and Burr and Burton were the preseason favorites in Division II, and both will enter the postseason unbeaten (14-0-0). Burr and Burton, which won last year's championship, is the top seed. … Defending champion Peoples Academy (10-2-2) earned the No. 1 seed in Division III, and didn't allow a goal in eight of its 14 regular-season contests. … Proctor (12-1-1) is the No. 1 seed in Division IV, but lost to second-seeded Twin Valley (11-3) earlier this season.

Girls' soccer: Top-seeded Essex (13-0-1) is the first Division I team to enter the postseason unbeaten in seven years. Second-seeded Champlain Valley (12-1-1) returned many key players from the team that won last year's Division I championship. … Montpelier is the top seed in Division II. The Solons (10-2-0) earned a first-round bye. … Peoples Academy (13-0-0) will be attempting to win its fifth Division III title in the last seven years. The Wolves have outscored their opponents 75-4 this season. … Proctor (13-0-1) is the top-seeded team in Division IV, and is one of three unbeaten girls teams in the state. The Phantoms allowed eight goals in their 14 games.

Field hockey: Top-seeded South Burlington (12-1-1) lost to Middlebury in last year's Division I championship game, and will be looking to take another step forward this year. … Division II might be the most competitive of the three divisions. Windsor (13-0-2) and U-32 (13-1-0) are the No. 1 and No. 2 seeded teams, respectively, but third seeded Mt. Abraham (9-4-1) is the only team that beat Division I South Burlington this season. Harwood (9-4-1), the No. 4 seed, won last year's championship. … Top-seeded Rice (12-0-1) is the clear favorite in Division III. The Green Knights won 11 of their 12 games by shutout, and have allowed one goal during the regular season.

WEBB SIGHTING
Mount Anthony Union junior Jesse Webb earned himself another trophy Sunday when he won the 285-pound (heavyweight) wrestling championship at the Super 32 Challenge in Greensboro, N.C.

Webb won the title by posting a 9-4 victory over Pennsylvania's Luke Fleck in the 285-pound final. He became the first Vermont representative to win a championship at the event, which featured wrestlers from 26 states.

Webb earned state championships in his weight class as a freshman and a sophomore. He had a bye Saturday, and won three matches Sunday to earn the title.

Roger Brown is a staff writer for the New Hampshire Union Leader and has been covering high school sports throughout New England since 1992.

New England Roundup: Vermont

March, 26, 2012
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The North got the best of the South in Saturday's North-South Senior All-Star Classic at Windsor High School.

VermontNorth teams won three of the four games at the event, which is sponsored by the Vermont Basketball Coaches' Association and featured some the state's top senior boys and girls players. Scores and highlights from each contest:

Division I-II Boys: Mill River's Nate Salgo scored 13 points and Springfield's Kurt Perham added 10 in the South's 80-69 triumph. Mount Mansfield's Tom Lacy led the North with 17.

Division III-IV Boys: Rivendell's Dylan Pelletier, Blue Mountain's Eddie Soucie and Websterville's Andrew Shuman each tossed in a team-high 11 points as the North prevailed 97-77.

Division I-II Girls: Burlington's Kaylah Jones led all scorers with 11 as the North edged the South 61-59.

Division III-IV Girls: Twinfield's Brianna duPont tossed in 10 points in the North's 82-63 triumph.

DISPLAY OF POWER
South Burlington's Chris Weinheimer scored a power-play goal midway through the third period to give the Austin Conference a 2-1 triumph over the Harris Conference in the Rotary All-Star Hockey Classic held Saturday at Essex High School.

Stowe's Hunter Grosvenor gave the Austin Conference a 1-0 lead with 3:20 left in the second period, but Northfield's Billy Whaley tied the game 39 seconds later.

South Burlington's Nate Young (10 saves), Rice's Ian Koupash (12) and Spaulding's Kevin Avery (seven) were the Austin Conference goaltenders. Essex's Pat Campbell (14), U-32's Mike Bresette (six) and St. Johnsbury's Chris O'Donnell (17) played in goal for the Harris Conference.

Montpelier's Mary Cain made 24 saves to highlight the Harris Conference's 4-2 triumph in the girls game, held March 17.

Middlebury's Maria Ploof scored twice for the Harris Conference, which also received goals from Rutland's Erin Kiernan-Reilly and Hartford's Bethany Bouthillier.

The Rotary games are used to select Vermont's teams for the Make-A-Wish Twin State Classic. Vermont will face New Hampshire's all-stars July 14 at the University of Vermont's Gutterson Fieldhouse.

GATORADE HONORS ST. AMOUR
Gatorade selected Missisquoi Valley Union's Matt St. Amour as its boys basketball Player of the Year in Vermont for the 2011-12 season.

St. Amour, a 6-foot-3-inch junior guard, is the first boys basketball player from Missisquoi to receive the award, which is based on athletic excellence, academic achievement and character.

St. Amour averaged 26.6 points. 12.8 rebounds, 3.8 assists and 2.7 points per game for the Thunderbirds, who lost in the Division I tournament's opening round. Missisquoi won the Division II title last season.

“He plays under control and can finish on either side of the basket, and he's also got great range,” Vergennes coach Peter Quinn said. “You have to defend him as soon as he gets one or two dribbles over half-court.”

St. Amour holds Missisquoi's record for career point scored (1,388).

GRIBBIN SELECTS DARTMOUTH
South Burlington's Mollie Gribbin has announced that she will continue her track and field career at Dartmouth College.

Gribbin, who holds the state record in the long jump (18 feet, 5.5 inches), the triple jump (40-9.5) and the 100 meters (12.24 seconds), was also considering Virginia, Columbia, Illinois and Oregon. She also played soccer for South Burlington.

Roger Brown is a freelance writer who has been reporting on high school sports in New England since 1992.

New England Roundup: Vermont

March, 16, 2012
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Defense carried the BFA-St. Albans boys hockey team to this year's Division I championship game, and it was defense, more than anything else, that allowed the Bobwhites to claim the program's 16th state title.

VermontJunior goaltender Andre Morin made 20 saves as third-seeded BFA-St. Albans defeated fifth-seeded Colchester 5-1 in the Division I final played Tuesday night at the University of Vermont's Gutterson Fieldhouse.

The Bobwhites (19-4-0) allowed three goals in their three tournament games, which included victories over Rice (6-0) and North Country (3-2).

Taylor Raftery, Mike Schreiner and Peter Dukas provided the offense for BFA-St. Albans, which beat Colchester (15-8-1) for the third time this season.

Ryan Francis scored for Colchester, which needed five overtimes to defeat Essex in the semifinals.

Second-seeded U-32 dominated Tuesday's Division II championship game and skated to a 5-1 triumph over top-seeded Northfield.

Andrew Danyew, Forrest Smith, Kyle Ferguson, Colvin Rice and Kyle Elliott scored for the Raiders (18-3-2), who spit two regular-season games against Northfield.

Billy Whaley scored for Northfield (20-3-0).

ESSEX, BURR & BURTON FINISH ON TOP
Vermont's girls hockey season ended Monday night, when Essex and Burr & Burton each won a state title at Gutterson Fieldhouse.

Fifth-seeded Essex earned the Division I championship by beating third-seeded South Burlington 2-1; and top-seeded Burr & Burton won the Division II title with a 4-1 triumph over third-seeded Stowe.

Essex (13-8-2) and South Burlington (15-5-4) were tied entering the third period, when Melissa Moldovan collected what turned out to be the game-winning goal shortly after an Essex power-play opportunity had expired.

Freshman goaltender Victoria Gibson made 15 saves for the Hornets, who beat South Burlington in two of three regular-season meetings. All three Essex wins came by one goal.

Julia Hudson scored South Burlington's goal.

Freshman Abby Marmer scored twice in Burr & Burton's victory. Marmer finished the season with a team-high 23 goals.

Junior Erin Thompson and freshman Jordan Harmon also scored for the Bulldogs, who raised their record to 21-1-0. Burr & Burton received 16 saves from junior goaltender Meg Chandler.

Sam Haab scored for Stowe (18-4-1).

LOTS OF HOOPLA
Recaps of Vermont's four boys basketball championship games:

Division I: Tom Lacy scored 11 points and pulled down 10 rebounds as top-seeded Mount Mansfield defeated second-seeded Rice 41-34.

Mount Mansfield (23-1) also received nine points from Troy Springer – all in the second half – and eight points and eight rebounds from Eric Suder.

Casey Tipson scored a game-high 16 points for Rice, which led by five at halftime. Tim Rensch added nine points and 14 rebounds for Rice, which won last year's title.

Mount Mansfield took control by outscoring Rice (22-2) 16-4 in the third quarter.

Division II: An 18-6 run in the the third quarter helped top-seeded Mount St. Joseph defeat top-seeded Vergennes 56-48.

Shannon Murray tossed in a game-high 13 points for MSJ, which won its first title since claiming the Division I championship in 1999. John Dewey (12) and Matthew Sanborn (10) also scored in double digits for MSJ (22-2).

Shep Carter led Vergennes (21-3) with 15.

Division III: Fifth-seeded Williamstown capped a strong postseason run with a 66-42 upset victory over second-seeded Rivendell (16-7).

It was the second title in three years for Williamstown, which won the Division IV championship in 2010. Williamstown made 27 of 43 free throw attempts in the victory.

Seth Atherton (18) and Jason Manwaring (16 points, seven rebounds) were Williamstown's leading scorers. Dylan Pelletier (16) led Rivendell (21-3).

It was the third meeting between the teams. Rivendell won both regular-season meetings.

Division IV: David Codling scored 17 points and grabbed 10 rebounds as top-seeded Twinfield beat third-seeded Danville 61-52.

Twinfield (22-2) also defeated Danville (18-6) twice during the regular season, and in last year's championship game.

Avery Whitcomb scored 15 points for Twinfield, which also received 12 points and 10 rebounds from Chad Copeland.

Tony Burrington (20) and Kyle Johnson (14) led Danville.

ILLINGWORTH WINS GATORADE AWARD
Hartford's Sarah Illingworth, a 6-foot-1 senior center, has been selected as Vermont's Gatorade Player of the Year for girls basketball. She is the first girls player from Hartford to win the award, which is based on athletic excellence, academic success and high character.

Illingworth averaged 12.8 points, 10.3 rebounds and 1.4 steals during the Division II regular season. She will continue her basketball career at UMass-Lowell next season.

Roger Brown is a freelance writer who has been covering high school sports throughout New England since 1992.

New England Roundup: Vermont

November, 16, 2011
11/16/11
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Woodstock Union High School football coach Jim McLaughlin won the 200th game of his coaching career Saturday, and it couldn't have come at a better time.

VermontMcLaughlin guided top-seeded Woodstock to a 27-7 victory over third-seeded Windsor in the Division III championship game at Castleton State College. It was the eighth state title McLaughlin's teams have won in his 30 years as a head coach.

Junior fullback Ed Doton did most of the damage for Woodstock, which began the season with back-to-back losses before winning nine in a row. Doton rushed for 255 yards and three touchdowns.

“If you look at it as a puzzle, the pieces really came together for us as the season went along,” McLaughlin said.

Woodstock, which led 14-0 at halftime, held Windsor running back Matt Rafus to 40 yards on 14 carries. Rafus finished the season with 1,881 yards rushing and 27 touchdowns.

Windsor's only touchdown came on a blocked field goal attempt that Ethan Hill returned 75 yards. Windsor completed its season with a 7-4 record.

In Saturday's other championship games top-seeded Hartford beat third-seeded Middlebury 42-6 to win the Division I title; and third-seeded Fair Haven outscored fourth-seeded Burr and Burton 57-34 to win the Division II title.

Hartford 42, Middlebury 6
Hartford dominated on both sides of the ball and won its fourth championship in the last five years.

Miles Latham rushed for 102 yards and two touchdowns, and Troy Bell ran for 109 yards to help the Hurricanes completed an unbeaten season (11-0). Hartford scored four second-half touchdowns.

Middlebury (9-2) played without quarterback Dillon Robinson, who was injured in the team's semifinal victory over BFA-St. Albans. Middlebury's only touchdown came when Marshall Hastings returned a kickoff 79 yards for a score.

Hartford, which had a 444-88 edge in net offense, outscored its opponents 508-112 this season.

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Football, Vermont, New England Roundup, Cross-country, Mount St. Joseph, Fair Haven, Brattleboro, Springfield (Vt.), Montpelier, Hartford (Vt.), Colchester, Mount Anthony, South Burlington, Mill River, Middlebury, Mount Mansfield, Julienne Devita, Taylor Spillane, Aleksey Jordick, Marshall Hastings, Burlington (Vt.), BFA-St. Albans, Milton (Vt.), North Country, Bellows Falls, BFA-Fairfax, Champlain Valley, Matt Rafus, Otter Valley, Burr and Burton, Windsor (Vt.), St. Johnsbury, Robert Coloutti, Andrew Richards, Dillon Robinson, Connor DeVarney, Nick LeClair, Tre Sanville, Adam Fortin, Cody Collins, Ben Bonneau, Jason Webster, Tucker Stone, Matt Mulcahy, Jake Stalcup, Autumn Eastman, Elle Purrier, Woodstock Union, Jim McLaughlin, Ethan Hill, Miles Latham, Austin Amery, Eamon Walsh, Jake Oliver, MIke Norman, Will Bourne, Hassan Cansler, Adis Muminovic, Grady Murtagh, Ben Hunter, Matt Fortier, Levi Ellis, Derrick Hernandez, Parker Lamoureux, Travis Wilson, Bobby Murray, Steven Ladka, Patrick Foley, Austin Quesnel, Adam Mackey, Jon Seward, Alex Cross, Rob Cassell, Cody Randall, Shawn Kerber, Kyle Kelly, John Norman, Ryan Ragosta, Kikr Perham, James Stillings, Conner Blair, Joe Langelier, Kody Ballard, Mike Schreiner, Zach Devoid, Taylor Raftery, Ben Thieken, Oliver Manning, Tucker Kohlasch, Dylan Raymond, Quinn Kropf, Ryan Fleming, Alec Koxlowski, Eric Decker, Trevor Yandow, Mike Fraser, Craig St. Hillaire, Jayson Collette, Michael McClellan, Dylan Crook, Jamie Holbrook, Nik Couture, T.J. Wesson, Armin Milak, Connor Langlais, Thomas Kane, Lincoln Lemieux, Richard Emery, Jeff Ziske, Evan Nolting, Will Thompson, Sean Lunny, Sean Warren, Brendan Copley

New England Roundup: Vermont

October, 20, 2011
10/20/11
12:36
PM ET
After a three-year absence, the Shrine Maple Sugar Bowl will return to Dartmouth College's Memorial Field next summer.

VermontThe all-star football game between high school players from Vermont and New Hampshire has been held at Dartmouth 48 times, but was played at Windsor High School in each of the last three years because of construction to the stadium surrounding Memorial Field. The 2012 game will be played on Aug. 4.

"I'm very excited about the revival of Dartmouth's half-century tradition of hosting the Shrine Maple Sugar Bowl Game," Dartmouth president Jim Yong Kim said. "We're proud to make our facilities available to Vermont and New Hampshire high school athletes in recognition of their dedication to such an excellent cause as the Shriners Hospitals for Children."

Of the 30 Shrine football games played across the country every year, the Shrine Maple Sugar Bowl ranks third in terms of money raised for the Shriners Hospitals. The event is sponsored by the three Shrine Centers of New Hampshire and Vermont -- Bektash (Concord, N.H.), Cairo (Rutland) and Mt. Sinai (Montpelier) – and has raised more than four million dollars since it was first played in Nashua, N.H., in 1954.

"The Board of Governors of the Shrine Maple Sugar Bowl Football Game is sincerely grateful to Dartmouth College for agreeing to host the 2012 game at their beautiful stadium at minimal cost to us," said Jerry Mason, president of the Board of Governors of the Shrine Maple Sugar Bowl. "This will certainly help to increase our contribution to Shriners Hospitals for Children."

New Hampshire won last year's game 45-21 and stretched its winning streak to 11 games. New Hampshire leads the all-time series 43-13-2.

Coaches for next year's game will be announced later this year. The teams from each state will be announced in February.

New Hampshire has 57 high schools that play varsity football. Vermont has 34.

The Shrine Maple Sugar Bowl was first played at Dartmouth in 1958. The game has also been held in Burlington, and four other New Hampshire locations: Holman Stadium (Nashua), Athletic Stadium (Manchester), Plymouth State University (Plymouth) and Cowell Stadium (Durham).

"We are pleased and proud to host the Shrine Bowl again, as we understand the importance of the event to the entire Twin States region," Dartmouth athletic director Harry Sheehy said. "We are grateful for President Kim's leadership in making it financially feasible for the game to return to Memorial Field and generate as much support as possible for Shriners Hospitals.”

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New England Roundup: Vermont

September, 22, 2011
9/22/11
12:03
PM ET
Many coaches and media members identified North Country as the high school football team to beat in Division II this season. So far, the Falcons have done nothing to prove those people wrong.

VermontNorth Country passed its toughest test of the season and raised its record to 3-0 by defeating Fair Haven 28-26 Saturday.

North Country trailed 26-16 at halftime, but took its first lead when fullback Adam Pothier scored on a 6-yard run with 4:48 to play. The loss dropped Fair Haven's record to 2-1.

“Our expectation were high,” North Country coach Bob Davis said. “We felt this was going to be a very good season. We start mostly seniors, and for a Vermont high school team we are pretty big.”

North Country finished with a 5-4 record and missed the playoffs last season. Tailback Nick LeClair and quarterback Tre Sanville are among the 22 seniors on this year's roster. LeClair and Sanville are both three-year starters. LeClair rushed for more than 1,000 yards last season, and Sanville missed half of his junior season with a knee injury.

The team's first two games ended in lopsided victories: 50-0 over Spaulding and 73-6 over U-32.

“We play option football,” Davis said. “When it gets rolling you can really tear up the yardage.”

LeClair, Sanville and Pothier operate behind a veteran offensive line that includes Adam Fortin, Cody Collins, Riley Simoneau, Ben Bonneau, Jason Webster and Lance Buffi.

North Country hasn't won a state championship since 1997, when it captured the third of three-consecutive titles. North Country hasn't played in a championship game since 2004, when it lost to South Burlington.

Davis will likely know even more about his team following Saturday's game at Rice (2-1), which won last year's Division II championship.

“Things are still evolving [in Division II], but I think Rice is definitely a contender,” Davis said. “They're a spread team and our defense is still evolving so the key will be our ability to establish the run.

“I've heard people mention Fair Haven, Milton and Burr and Burton as contenders. I think at the beginning of the year we we viewed as a strong contender as well. Hopefully they'll keep thinking that way.”

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New England Roundup: Vermont

September, 9, 2011
9/09/11
4:22
PM ET
Super conferences may be the thing of the future in college football, but the concept is getting a test drive at the high school level in Vermont this fall.

VermontFour teams – Champlain Valley Union, Colchester, Middlebury and Mount Mansfield – moved from Division II to Division I in the offseason, which created a 14-team league at the top of Vermont's three-division format.

“In the past we always tried to have an even number of teams in each division,” CVU coach Jim Provost said. “What was happening is there were schools in Division II that started to do well and belonged in Division I.

“In the last two years, from top to bottom, there was more parity in Division II than there was in Division I. I think there's better balance across the division now.”

The following alignments will be in place through the 2012 season:

Division I:
Essex; Champlain Valley; BFA-St. Albans; Rutland; Mount Mansfield; Colchester; Middlebury; Spaulding; Mount Anthony; Hartford; Burlington; Brattleboro; South Burlington and St. Johnsbury.

Division II:
North Country; U-32; Lyndon; Milton; Springfield; Bellows Falls; Burr and Burton; Fair Haven; Rice Memorial and Otter Valley.

Division III:
BFA-Fairfax; Windsor; Mount Abraham; Mill River; Woodstock; Poultney; Montpelier; Oxbow; Winooski and Mount St. Joseph.

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New England Roundup: Vermont

July, 14, 2011
7/14/11
2:15
PM ET
Practice for this year’s Shrine Maple Sugar Bowl won’t begin until July 28, but what was already a steep climb for Vermont has become even steeper.

Vermont, which hasn’t beaten New Hampshire in the all-star football game since 2000, recently had two players opt out of the game: wide receiver Mike Triller (Rutland) and wide receiver Mike DiMambro (Essex).

VermontTriller won’t participate because he’s scheduled to play baseball at Clemson next season, and DiMambro accepted a track and field scholarship from the University of Rhode Island.

“I guess [DiMambro] was getting a little bit of heat [from Rhode Island] about playing in the game,” Vermont coach Jim Provost said. “We’d like to have both of them, but we had replacements within half an hour, so we’re at 36 strong.”

DiMambro caught 39 passes for 609 yards and 10 touchdowns last season. His 19 career TD receptions rank second in school history. Ben Price (St. Johnsbury) has replaced DiMambro on the Vermont roster.

Triller caught 37 passes for 630 yards last fall. Lance Elithorpe (Mount Anthony) has replaced Triller.

This year’s game will be played Aug. 6 at Macleay-Royce Field in Windsor, Vt. New Hampshire stretched its winning streak to 10 games by posting a 34-20 victory last summer and leads the series 42-13-2.

Provost served as the head coach at Rice Memorial for 14 seasons, and completed his third season at Champlain Valley Union last fall. His Redhawks lost in the 2009 Division II championship game, and reached the Division II semifinals in 2010.

Provost also served as Vermont's head coach for the 1990 Shrine Game. New Hampshire posted a 35-0 victory that year.

“I’ve tried to run the ball against them and that didn’t work,” Provost said. “Whatever the plan is it boils down to mistakes and turnovers. It would help if we could find a way to keep New Hampshire from scoring a lot of points.

“I don’t see us playing a lot of kids two ways, but we do have a couple kids we’d like to see on both sides of the ball at some points.”

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New England Roundup: Vermont

June, 2, 2011
6/02/11
11:33
PM ET
There was only one upset in the Division I baseball playoffs Tuesday, but it was a big one.

VermontSouth Burlington, the tournament’s No. 15 seed, received a complete-game pitching performance from Ethan Hanson and knocked off second-seeded Essex 10-7.

Hanson, who struck out four, also hit a three-run home run to give South Burlington a 5-1 lead in the third. Matt Baechle collected three hits for South Burlington, which also received two hits from P.J. Handy.

Essex trailed 10-5 entering the seventh, but scored twice and had the tying run at the plate before Steve Jurkiewicz popped out to end the game.

Essex, which won last year’s Division I title, completed its season with a 13-4 record under first-year coach Chris Richard. South Burlington raised its record to 5-9.

South Burlington wasn’t the only 15th-seeded team that extended its season Tuesday. Middlebury received a complete game from Tyler Provencher and defeated second-seeded Fair Haven 6-5 in the Division II tournament.

Fair Haven, which finished with an 11-6 record, led 3-0 after two innings.

Provencher surrendered seven hits, struck out five and didn’t walk a batter. The victory improved Middlebury’s record to 4-11.

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New England Roundup: Vermont

February, 23, 2011
2/23/11
2:00
PM ET
Champlain Valley Union football coach Jim Provost likes what he sees when he looks at the Vermont roster for this summer’s Shrine Maple Sugar Bowl.

VermontProvost, who will coach Vermont in the all-star game against New Hampshire, sent out invitations to 36 players and all 36 committed to play in the contest. Vermont wasn’t able to put its best team on the field last year, when Essex quarterback Max Librizzi – the state’s Gatorade Player of the Year  declined to participate while he prepared to begin his college career at Holy Cross.

“We were 36 for 36,” Provost said. “I was very happy about that. I like our depth at the receiver position. We’re hoping that will be a position of strength for us. We like the backs we took too.”

Rice quarterback Christian McCormick and Hartford running back Trevor Wood are among the players on the Vermont roster, which was announced last Friday. McCormick, who guided Rice to last year’s Division II state championship, was named the 2010 Gatorade Player of the Year. Wood helped Hartford win the Division I state title.

“Picking the linemen was the toughest part,” Provost said. “New Hampshire has more kids to pick from, so hopefully our depth will be as good as their depth. I think our starters have been comparable to their starters the last few years. It always comes down to that second group.”

New Hampshire extended its winning streak to 10 games when it posted a 34-20 victory over Vermont last year. New Hampshire leads the all-time series 42-13-2.

This year’s game will be played Aug. 6 at Windsor High School.

This is the second time Provost has served as Vermont’s head coach. He was also Vermont’s head coach for the 1990 game. New Hampshire prevailed 35-0 that year.

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New England Roundup: Vermont

January, 26, 2011
1/26/11
5:01
PM ET
Paul Pecor guided the Rice Memorial boys basketball team to two Division I championships in his first seven seasons as the program’s head coach, so it made headlines when he called the 2010-11 Rice team the most talented group he’s ever coached.

VermontThen Rice made headlines again when it lost to an 0-2 Mount Mansfield team that failed to score more than 47 points in either of its first two games.

Pecor said that loss may have been a good thing, and it’s hard to argue otherwise. Since then the Green Knights have won seven games in a row to raise their record to 8-1. Rice’s latest victory came Tuesday night, when it avenged its earlier loss to Mount Mansfield, 55-34.

“Everybody was freaking out and saying we were overrated after that loss, but you know what? It helped us. It refocused us,” Pecor said. “I’m literally watching us get better as we go.”

That’s not good news for other Division I teams. Rice returned four starters from a team that won nine games last season: sophomore forward Marcus Willingham, sophomore guard Casey Tipson, junior forward Jake Maynard and junior forward Tim Rensch. Willingham, Tipson and Rensch are each averaging more than 11 points per game.

The Green Knights also added guard Austin Robinson, a transfer from Burlington High School, to the mix. Robinson is averaging 14.1 points per contest.

Pecor said the most indispensible player on the roster isn’t a starter, however. It’s senior Christian McCormick, a senior captain who agreed to come off the bench.

McCormick, a guard, was the starting quarterback for the Rice football team, which won the 2010 Division II championship. He was named the state’s Gatorade Player of the Year for football.

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