Valley Baseball Loses in Shoreline Final, Class S Quarters; Girls’ Tennis Takes Defeat in Class M Semifinals
The Valley Regional baseball team took a 4-2 loss against Old Saybrook in the championship game of the Shoreline Conference Tournament and then won its first two games in the Class S State Tournament before taking a loss in the quarterfinal round. The Warriors finished the 2022 season with an overall record of 22-4.
After defeating East Hampton and North Branford in its first two games of the draw, top-seeded Valley Regional squared off against No. 2 seed Old Saybrook in the Shoreline Conference Tournament final on May 27. The Warriors lost the contest by the score of 4-2 versus the Rams at Palmer Field in Middletown.
Valley took an early lead over Old Saybrook by scoring 2 runs in the bottom of the first inning. Junior Sam Hutchinson put the Warriors on the board with a solo home run and then junior Reed Beighau made it 2-0 when he singled in senior James Marsden, who had singled.
Old Saybrook tied the game by plating 2 runs during the top of the second inning. The Rams took the lead with 2 more runs in the sixth inning to go up 4-2, which held up as the final score.
Marsden took the start and pitched the first 4 innings for Valley, striking out 8 batters. Junior Colin Carver threw 3 scoreless innings in relief and had 4 strikeouts. Senior Andrew Salbinski hit a double for the Warriors in the game.
A few days later, Valley Regional kicked off the Class S State Tournament as the No. 2 seed and notched an 8-3 home victory versus No. 31 East Windsor in a first-round matchup. Junior Braeden Sparaco pitched 6 innings to get the win for Valley, allowing 3 hits and striking out 7. Salbinski and Marsden both had 2 hits with an RBI to help the Warriors prevail.
The next day, the Warriors hosted No. 18 Plainfield for a second-round contest and won the game by the final score of 15-1. Carver pitched up the win after allowing 2 hits and fanning 7 through 4 innings pitched. Junior Henry Breckenfeld allowed just 1 hit over the last 3 innings to close out the game.
Marsden had a double and a triple with 3 RBI to pace Valley’s offense. Carver hit a home run, while Sparaco produced 4 RBI for Head Coach Brian Drinkard’s squad.
Then on June 4, Valley played a Class S quarterfinal home game versus No. 7 Oxford. The Warriors took a 9-5 defeat to Oxford and were eliminated from the tournament with the loss.
The Valley Regional softball team lost a first-round contest against Wolcott in the Class M State Tournament last week. On May 31, No. 25 seed Valley Regional played at No. 8 Wolcott in the first round of the Class M bracket and took an 11-1 loss in the matchup. The Warriors completed the 2022 season with an overall record of 8-13.
Senior Sammy Pierce went 3-for-4 with a triple for Valley in its states game versus Wolcott. Senior Vivian Paradis, senior Madison Sheehan, senior Abby Amara, junior Anna Benson, and sophomore Riley Soares each had 1 hit for the Warriors.
The Valley Regional girls’ tennis team claimed victory in its first two matches of the Class M State Tournament before losing to Hand in the semifinal round last week. The Warriors finished the 2022 season with an overall record of 14-4.
The 6th-seeded Warriors started off the state tourney by earning a 4-2 home win over No. 11 seed Woodland in first-round action on May 31. The following day, Valley hit the road to play a quarterfinal contest versus No. 3 Branford and defeated the Hornets by a 4-2 score. Then on June 3, the Warriors hosted No. 15 seed Hand for a semifinal match and took a 7-0 loss.
The Valley Regional boys’ tennis team took its only loss of the season when the Warriors dropped a 6-1 decision to Suffield in the first round of the Class S State Tournament on May 31. The top-seeded Warriors hosted No. 16 Suffield for a Class S first-round match and was eliminated from the tournament with a 6-1 defeat. Valley Regional finished with an overall record of 13-1 in a campaign that saw the team post an undefeated regular-season record while claiming the Shoreline Conference championship.
The Valley Regional girls’ lacrosse team took a defeat versus Lauralton Hall in the first round of the Class S State Tournament on May 31. The 3rd-seeded Warriors hosted No. 14 Lauralton Hall for a first-round states game and took a 14-7 loss to the Crusaders. Valley Regional finished the spring season with an overall record of 14-4.
The Valley Regional boys’ lacrosse team saw its season come to a close when the Warriors took a loss to Morgan in the qualifying round of the Class S State Tournament last week. On May 27, 20th-seeded Valley Regional faced No. 13 Morgan for a Class S qualifying contest and took an 11-8 defeat against the Huskies. Valley finished with a record of 7-11 in the team’s first season with Head Coach Colby Hawkins.
Girls’ Outdoor Track
The Valley Regional girls’ outdoor track team sent several athletes to compete in the recent Shoreline Conference Championship and Class M State Championship meets. The Warriors finished in sixth place at the Shoreline meet and then came in 25th place at states.
Valley scored 37.5 points as a squad on its way to taking sixth place when the Shoreline Conference Championship took place at Old Saybrook High School on May 25. Senior Chase Conrad claimed third place in the discus by launching a toss of 81 feet-9 inches in the event for the Warriors. Senior Loretta Cecchini finished fourth for the pole vault after soaring over the bar at 7 feet-6 inches. Junior Audrey Board finished fourth in the high jump by clearing 4 feet-8 inches, and freshman Ceci Wilkins took fourth place in the 300 hurdles with a time of 52.45 seconds.
Senior Grace Jacaruso took fifth place in the 400 by recording a time of 63.11 at Shorelines. Senior Ava Cunningham ran a time of 12:55.95 in the 3,200 to claim fifth place in the event.
Valley’s 4x800 relay team of Cunningham, sophomore Emilee Surber, freshman Holly Board, and Jacaruso came in sixth place with a mark of 11:02.19. Holly Board also finished sixth in the 1,600 (5:55.77) for the Warriors. Senior Maddie Jacaruso took seventh place in the 100 (14.01), junior Raquel Farray came in eighth place in the pole vault (7-0), and sophomore Abby Reardon finished eighth in the 400 (69.56) at the conference meet.
On July 2, Valley Regional scored 0.14 points to finish in 25th place at the Class M State Championship at Willow Brook Park. Cecchini accounted the Warriors’ points at the meet by taking eighth place in the pole vault with a height of 7-6.
Valley’s 4x800 relay of Holly Board, Cunningham, Grace Jacaruso, and Surber came in 12th place (10:34.72) at states. Maddie Jacaruso finished 14th (28.84) in the 200 with Reardon placing 28th (29.53) for the Warriors.
Grace Jacaruso finished in 15th place for the 400 (1:03.07), while Cunningham took 15th place in the 3,200 (12:58.29). Wilkens finished 23rd in the 300 hurdles by recording a time of 55.27.
Boys’ Outdoor Track
The Valley Regional boys’ outdoor track team was represented by a few athletes at Shoreline Conference and the Class S State championship meets that recently took place.
Valey finished in 11th place with 13 points scored at the Shoreline Conference Championship at Old Saybrook High School on May 25. Senior Connor Lunz turned in a couple of solid showings in the throwing events for the Warriors at the conference meet. Lunz claimed third place in the discus with a personal-best throw of 132 feet-2 inches and also finished fourth in the shot put with a toss of 40 feet-1.5 inches on behalf of Valley Regional.
Valley’s 4x400 relay took eighth place at Shorelines. The Warriors’ quartet of Lunz, freshman Finn Boyles, freshman Andrew Thomas, and freshman Kenny Batt recorded a time of 4:23.53 on their way to placing eighth in the meet.
Lunz went on to compete in his throwing events at the Class S State Championship at Willow Brook Park on May 31. Lunz finished ninth in the discus with a throw of 125-5 and also placed 17th in the shot put by recording a toss of 39-11.5.