Branford Golf Finishes 7th in Division II State Meet; Track Teams Represent at State Open
The Branford boys’ golf team posted a seventh-place finish when the Hornets competed in the Division II State Championship on June 6. The Hornets tallied a team total of 337 on their way to placing seventh when the state meet took place at Tallwood Country Club on June 6.
Junior Keegan LaLonde recorded the Hornets’ best score with an 80 for his 18-hole round, putting him in tie for 12th place for the individual standings at states. Senior Justin Acquarulo carded a score of 82 and finished in a tie for 15th place for Branford.
Junior Colin Deane scored 87 and finished in a tie for 27th place in the state meet. Junior Mike Farricielli finished in a tie for 33rd place with an 88, and senior Matt Morgan finished tied for 35th place after returning to the clubhouse with a score of 89.
LaLonde went on to compete for Branford at the State Open Championship at the Black Hall Club on June 11. LaLonde finished in a tie for 15th place in the State Open by posting a score of 81 on the day.
The Branford golf team turned in an overall record of 17-1 for regular-season play this spring. The Hornets went on to finish in seventh place at the SCC Championship prior to last week’s meets.
Freshman Peyton Gaudreau won two matches when she represented the Branford girls’ tennis team among the best players in the state at last week’s Individual Invitational Tournament. Gaudreau advanced to the quarterfinal round of the singles bracket with her two wins at the invitational, which was hosted at Wesleyan University from June 6 to 10.
As the No. 9 seed, Gaudreau earned a bye through the first round of the singles draw at the Individual Invitational Tournament. Gaudreau then went up against Milana Montini of Pomperaug in the round-of-32 and posted a 6-0, 6-0 shutout to move on to the next round.
Gaudreau went on to claim a 6-1, 6-3 victory over Hannah Heywood of St. Joseph in the round-of-16. Unfortunately, Gaudreau endured an injury in that match and subsequently withdrew from her quarterfinal contest that had been slated to be played later that day.
Gaudreau won all 21 matches that she played for Branford this season. The Hornets’ No. 1 singles player earned All-SCC and All-State honors while helping Branford net an overall record of 15-4 to go with an appearance in the Class M state quarterfinals.
Senior Josh Berdon competed on behalf of the Branford boys’ tennis team at the Individual Invitational Tournament that was held at Wesleyan University from June 6 to 10. Berdon won his first match in the singles bracket before taking a loss in his next contest at the invitational.
Berdon squared off against Julian Mileski of Ledyard in the opening round of the singles draw of the Individual Invitational Tournament. Berdon claimed a 6-3, 6-2 victory over Mileski to advanced into the round-of-32. Berdon then faced No. 1 seed Tighe Brunetti of Staples in the round-of-32 and took 6-1, 6-0 loss in the contest.
Berdon finished the 2022 season playing No. 1 singles for Branford, earning All-SCC accolades for the second-straight campaign. Berdon helped the Hornets record an overall mark of 13-8 while qualifying for both SCCs and states this year.
Boys’ Outdoor Track
The Branford boys’ outdoor track team was represented in two individual events and one relay at the State Open Championship meet at Willow Brook Park on June 6. Seniors Ryder Kropiwnicki and Peyton Moriarty competed on behalf of Branford, while the Hornets’ 4x400 relay also took part in the State Open competition.
Kropiwnicki finished 12th in the pole vault by clearing the bar at 11 feet-6 inches for Branford at the State Open. Kropiwnicki had recently finished first in the pole vault at the SCC East Sectional Championship (12-3) and then finished third at both the SCC Championship (11-0) and the Class MM State Championship.
Moriarty came in 17th place in the 800 by crossing the finish line with a time of 2:00.23 at the Open. Moriarty had placed third in the 800 at sectionals (2:02.84) and then took fourth place at both SCCs (2:00.04) and states (2:00.07).
Branford’s 4x400 relay of senior Patrick Zdunek, senior Cheng Wu, senior Cameron Meli, and Moriarty finished in 19th place with a mark of 3:31.68 in the State Open. The Hornets’ quartet had previously finished in first place at the sectional meet (3:32.20), second at the SCC meet (3:30.41), and third for the Class MM meet (3:29.83).
Girls’ Outdoor Track
The Branford girls’ outdoor track had one athlete compete in an individual event and also sent a relay to last week’s State Open Championship meet. Junior Tess Wasiolek ran the 1,600 for the Hornets, who also saw their 4x400 relay participate in the State Open at Willow Brook Park on June 6.
Wasiolek finished in 17th place in the 1,600 by recording a time of 5:22.88 for Branford at the State Open. Wasiolek had previously finished second in the 1,600 at the SCC East Sectional Championship with a school-record time of 5:07.960, after which she placed second at the SCC Championship (5:15.65) and fifth in the Class M State Championship (5:18.00). Wasiolek also won the 800 at both sectionals (2:22.71) and SCCs (2:22.22)
Branford’s 4x400 relay of sophomore Joelle Budz, senior Julia Duffy, Wasiolek, and junior Sarah Nwagboli finished in 21st place with a time of 4:15.35 at the State Open Championship. The relay had previously finished in third place at the Class M State Championship by posting a time of 4:14.92.