Guilford Baseball, Girls’ Lacrosse Advance to State Semifinals; Guerra Takes Class L Title in 1,600
Hannah McDermott and the Indians’ girls’ lacrosse squad won their first two games in the Class M State Tournament to advance to the semifinal round. (Photo by Kelley Fryer/The Courier)
Jacqueline Guerra won the 1,600 at the Class L State Championship to help the Guilford girls’ outdoor track team finish ninth at the meet. (Photo by Kelley Fryer/The Courier)
The Guilford baseball team was victorious in its first three games of the Class L State Tournament, including a thrilling quarterfinal win over North Haven that took two days to complete due to weather, to advance into the semifinal round. The Indians now have an overall record of 16-8 on the season.
In the first round, No. 10 seed Guilford hosted No. 23 East Lyme and doubled the Vikings up with a 6-3 win. Hosting No. 26 seed Lyman Hall in the second round the next day, the Indians prevailed by a 4-2 final. Guilford next faced No. 2 seed North Haven in the quarterfinals in a game that began on June 2, was suspended due to weather, and then completed the next day with Guilford winning 5-4 in 10 innings. Guilford trailed 4-1, before scoring two runs in the sixth inning and another in the seventh to tie the game. In the top of the seventh, Evan Song walked, stole second base, and scored on a one-out hit by Gray Stephens. North Haven loaded the bases with one out in the bottom of the ninth, when the game was halted as the rains came. When it resumed the next day, Matt McGrath came in on relief to get two outs and escape the jam. In the top of the 10th, Ben Panagoulias reached on an error and scored on single by JohnLuke Cianciolo to put Guilford up 5-4. McGrath got the final three outs of the game to send the Indians to the state semifinals.
Guilford will face No. 11 seed Wethersfield (16-7) in the Class L semis on Tuesday, June 5 at 3:30 p.m. at Dunkin’ Donuts Park. The winner advances to the final at Palmer Field to face the winner of No. 1 Windsor (21-2) and No. 12 Branford (17-8) on Friday, June 8 at 7 p.m.
The Indians pulled off two road upsets in the opening rounds of the Class M State Tournament last week to advance to the semifinals.
The 13th-seeded Indians dispatched No. 4 seed Tolland by the score of 16-10 in the first round on May 29. Facing No. 5 Woodstock Academy in the quarterfinals, Guilford won by the final margin of 14-7 on May 31.
Guilford (14-7) will face top-seeded Hand (18-2) in a semifinal on Tuesday, June 5 at 7 p.m. at West Haven High School. The winner will face either No. 2 Branford (17-3) or No. 3 Pomperaug (16-2) in the final on Saturday, June 9 at Law High School.
Guilford posted a victory in its first game of the Class M State Tournament and was then eliminated from the draw by taking a loss to New Fairfield
In the first round, 9th-seeded Guilford upended No. 8 Fitch by a 15-4 final on May 30. Facing top-seeded New Fairfield in the quarterfinals, the Indians took a 13-12 defeat to finish with an overall record of 12-7 on the season.
Girls’ Outdoor Track
Jacqueline Guerra took first place in the 1,600-meter run to help Guilford finish in ninth place at the Class L State Championship on May 29. The Indians scored 32 points at the state meet, which took place at Middletown High School.
Guerra, who made the All-State Team as a result of her win, won the 1,600 by finishing with a time of 5 minutes and 12.94 seconds to defeat second-place Dagny Edwards of Simsbury (5:20.24).
Also at the meet, Meredith Bloss finished third for the 3,200 (11:16.65), Elissa Strand was fifth for the 800 (2:26.72), and Christina Nault came in eighth for the 300 hurdles (49.95).
The Indians’ 4x400 relay of Meg Reynolds, Kelsi Putnam, Guerra, and Chloe Shaw came in third place (4:07.45), while the 4x800 relay of Julia Esposito, Putnam, Shaw, and Strand finished fourth (9:53.07).
“Jacqueline winning and being All-State was a great reward for her great work,” said Head Coach Jon Rivera. “Meredith did what she needed and is lined up for a great State Open and possible repeat trip to New Englands. The 4x800 had an off day, but will get another chance this week, hoping to repeat last year’s run to New Englands. Chloe Shaw ran great on both relays, as the 4x400 wound up being the highlight of the day with its season’s best effort.”
Boys’ Outdoor Track
The Indians saw two athletes score points at last week’s Class MM State Championship. Guilford finished tied for 27th place with six points scored at Middletown High School on May 30.
Corey Sondak finished fifth for the 100-meter dash in a time of 11.1 seconds for Guilford. Brennan Kaisen came in seventh for the 3,200 (10:16.60) to account for the Indians’ other points at the meet.
The Indians had a tremendous showing at the Class L State Championship that took place from May 26-31. Guilford finished tied for fifth place with 11 points scored at the meet, led by the team of Gianni Esposito and Sam Inchalik, which advanced to the championship match of the doubles tournament.
Esposito and Inchalik were seeded 6th in the Class L doubles bracket and defeated Masuk’s Sean Murray and Karma Vijay (6-1, 6-1), Notre Dame-West Haven’s duo of Eric Harkins and Rory Schreck (6-0, 6-2), and Rithwik Shivram and Rahul Vallabhajosula of Wilton (6-1, 6-2) to make the quarterfinals. The Indians’ duo squared off against the No. 3-seeded team of Luke Crowley and Ben Graham of New Canaan and won 6-1, 6-2. For the semis, they beat the 7th-seeded tandem of Sam Slobin and Oliver Kleinberg of Fairfield Ludlowe by the final score of 6-0, 7-6, 7-4. Esposito and Inchalik then took a 6-1, 0-6, 7-6 (8-6) loss against Hand’s 4th-seeded team of Noah Gulla and Rob Israel in the final.
For singles play, Guilford’s Walker Mulligan earned a 6-1, 6-2 win against Wethersfield’s Liam Harrington for the first round, defeated No. 9 seed Matt Brand of New Canaan, 6-4, 6-2, in the second round; and netted a 6-2, 6-1 win versus Griffin Forberg of Fairfield Ludlowe to reach the quarterfinals, where he lost a 6-1, 6-2 contest to 3rd-seeded Justin Pace of Hand.
No. 15 seed Alex Kagan defeated North Haven’s Andrew Carmody, 6-1, 6-0, and recorded a win against No. 16 Noah Dubitzky of RHAM, before losing to No. 2 seed Bobby Neuner of Darien by a 6-1, 6-0 score in the third round.
Joel Cimino defeated Jacobo Perez of Wilby, 8-0, in the opening round and then took a 6-0, 6-1 loss to top-seeded Andrew Forchetti of Notre Dame-West Haven. Nick Celotto notched an 8-3 win against Videep Soni from Newington, followed by a 6-1, 6-0 loss to No. 4 Jason Lee of New Canaan.
The Indians’ doubles team of Noah Horton and Michael Hooker bested Tom Dowd and Nate Sommers of Wethersfield by a 6-0, 6-1 score and then took a 6-1, 6-4 second-round loss to the No. 5 seeded team of Parker Pacekonis and Ronnak Saxena of South Windsor. Isaac Freeman and Erik Mastalerz lost to Farmington’s Kumar Drash and Rohit Limaye by a 6-1, 2-6, 10-6 score in the first round.
The Indians finished their season by taking a defeat in the Class L State Tournament quarterfinals last week.
No. 7 seed Guilford faced No. 2 Hand in the state quarterfinals on May 29 and lost a 7-0 contest. The Indians finished their campaign with an overall record of 18-5 and also qualified for the SCC Tournament semifinals after defeating North Haven in the quarters.
The Indians competed at the SCC Championship on May 29 and finished tied for seventh place at the meet. Guilford tallied a score of 341 to finished tied with Cheshire on the par-71 course. John Kosh was the low man for Guilford with a round of 79, while Anthony Avallone (85), Austin Hitchcock (88), and James Marks (89), and Josh Krause (101) also competed for the Indians at SCCs.