Boys’ Ice Hockey
The Yellowjackets’ boys’ ice hockey squad came into this season expecting to score a lot of goals and they’ve done just that while tearing through their first three games. East Haven netted 33 goals between the three contests, which were all lopsided victories for Head Coach Lou Pane’s squad.
To start the year, East Haven defeated New Milford 8-3 on Dec. 19 on the team’s home ice at DiLungo Rink. Six of the goals came in the first period as the Easties raced out to a comfortable win. Zach Paquin recorded a hat trick and an assist, while freshman Nick Capone, who verbally committed to playing college hockey at the University of Maine prior to the season, scored twice and added two assists in his high school debut. Joe Lorello, Joe Aloi, and Jake Aloi all added goals, plus Ryan Albert had three assists. Lorello also had two helpers for East Haven.
On Dec. 21, the Easties’ offense was once again clicking on all cylinders as they put home 15 goals in a blowout victory over Wilton. East Haven won the game 15-3, scoring at least four goals in each period. Freshman Logan Hamilton made 10 saves to earn his first career victory between the pipes, while nine different skaters scored for East Haven. Chris Teto, Matt Latella, Lorello, Capone, Paquin, and Jake Aloi all scored twice, plus Dogolo, Joe Consigilo, and Mani Finoia added a goal apeice. Capone had a team-high five assists, Joe Aloi and Jake Aloi both had three, and Dogolo and Consigilo finished with two each.
Then on Dec. 28, the Easties topped the Norwich Free Academy-St. Bernard-Bacon Academy Redhawks 10-1. Capone and Jake Aloi both recorded a hat trick in the win and Joe Aloi scored twice. Shawn Wagner and Jon Moscato netted the other goals for the Easties. To go with his three goals, Capone added three assists. Jake Aloi, Joe Aloi, Latella, and Paquin had two assists each. In goal, Matt Twarowski made 16 saves and Hamilton recorded four in a combination effort for the win.
Girls’ Ice Hockey
Branford-East Haven-North Branford picked up its first victory on the season by recording a 2-1 overtime triumph versus Mercy-Northwest Catholic at Champions Skating Center in Cromwell on Dec. 27. The next day, the Hornets made it two in a row by posting a 4-2 home win over Amity-North Haven-Cheshire at DiLungo Rink to improve to 1-3-1 for the year. The week before, Branford-East Haven-North Branford lost a 3-0 home decision against Hamden on Dec. 22.
The East Haven girls’ basketball team has won its first six games of the season with a tournament title to boot. In the Tip-Off Tournament that the Easties hosted, the team defeated Barlow in the opening round before topping Hand in the championship game. Olivia Coyle earned Tournament MVP honors for the Yellowjackets.
On Dec. 19, East Haven beat Barlow 69-40 behind a balanced attack that featured 10 different scorers. Coyle led the bunch with 16 points, while Kylie Schlottman added 14 and Alannah Doheny scored 10.
Then in the final, the Yellowjackets defeated Hand 55-52 on Dec. 21. It was a hard-fought, balanced game where East Haven outscored Hand by four in the fourth quarter to get the victory. Four different players were in double figures as Schlottman had a team-high 15, Alexis Pendziwater scored 14, Coyle dropped in 11, and Haley Montesanto added 10.
East Haven then went on the road on Dec. 23 and defeated rival Branford by a 45-33 score.
After that, the Yellowjackets returned home to host the East Haven Holiday Tournament that started on Dec. 27. In the opening matchup, East Haven prevailed over Newington 66-41 to advance to face Career in the final on Dec. 29 (after press time). Schlottman scored a game-high 20 points, plus Isabella Ragaini and Coyle added 13 points each for the Easties in the Newington victory.
The Yellowjackets lost their first two games of the season by taking defeats against Brookfield and Branford.
The year started on Dec. 20 with a 68-56 loss at Brookfield. East Haven ended the game strong, but couldn’t overcome a 38-24 halftime deficit. Senior captain Jeremiah Cureton led East Haven with 15 points, plus junior captain Ryan Spano added 13. As a team, East Haven nailed seven three-pointers in the loss.
In its home opener on Dec. 23, East Haven lost to Branford 43-39. The Hornets outscored East Haven 14-1 in the third quarter and that proved to be the difference. The Yellowjackets connected on 10 three-point attempts in the defeat. Spano scored 10 points for East Haven and Brandon DePalma finished with nine as both athletes nailed three treys apiece. Eddie Popolizio battled down low for nine points.
East Haven defeated Shelton 38-30 at home on Dec. 20.
Four different Yellowjackets were victorious by pin in the victory. They included Nick DeMorro in the 138-pound weight class at 5:27, Sebastian Montoya in the 170-pound weight class at 2:12, Josh Rao in the 195-pound weight class at 0:36, and Justin Fonacier at the 2:33 mark in the 220-weight class. Winners by decision were Antonio Lieto (113, 14-4), Alex Tapia (132, 11-3), Connor Gontarz (145, 9-5), and Damien Benway (182, 5-4). Other wrestlers for the Easties in the match included Victor Garcia (106), Joe Milano (126), Joncarlo Alberino (152), Danny Jarrin (160), and Armando Castaneda (285).