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Junior catcher Kayla Despres collected plenty of big hits last week to help the North Branford softball squad take two of three and improve to 12-5. (Photo by Kelley Fryer/The Sound | Buy This Photo)
Junior Bret Fee tossed a one-hitter with 12 K’s when the T-Birds earned a 6-1 win versus Coginchaug on Senior Day. (Photo by Kelley Fryer/The Sound | Buy This Photo)
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The North Branford softball team won two of its three contests last week to improve to 12-5 for the year. The T-Birds posted blowouts versus Morgan and Old Lyme to go with a one-run loss versus Coginchaug.
North Branford started its week with a 14-0 shutout victory at Morgan on May 6. Senior Kaylee Velez earned the win by pitching a complete game in which she allowed just four hits. Offensively, freshman Hannah Senerchia led the Thunderbirds with four hits, four runs scored, and two RBI, while as sophomore Sophia Ouellet had three hits and drove home two. Juniors Katy Pedersen and Kayla Despres, sophomore Jada Miconi, and freshman Bella Hills each contributed one hit with two RBI. Sophomore Erica Piercey had a hit and drove home a run, plus senior captain Angelina Ramada had a hit, an RBI, and scored three runs.
On May 8, North Branford dropped a 2-1 decision to Coginchaug. The Blue Devils scored both of their runs in the fifth inning. North Branford plated its run in the sixth when Ramada tripled and later came around to score. Velez pitched five innings, and Hills worked two hitless innings of relief.
North Branford bounced back with a 16-5 victory at Old Lyme on May 9. Despres and Hills both hit a pair of home runs in the win. Despres finished the game with four hits, four runs scored, and three RBI, while Hills had four RBI. Senerchia had four hits and scored a run for the T-Birds, who saw Piercey, Pedersen, and Ramada each get three hits. Piercey drove in three runs, and Pedersen scored three runs. Hills picked up the win on the mound by pitching five innings and striking out six batters. Junior Mairead Aiken threw two innings of relief.
North Branford stands at 12-6 after tacking on two more victories last week. The Thunderbirds won Shoreline Conference games versus Morgan and Coginchaug, before taking a non-conference defeat against North Haven.
On May 6, the T-Birds defeated Morgan by a 9-4 final as junior John Pollock earned his fifth win of the season on the hill. North Branford jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the first inning when Nick Mancini doubled and scored on fellow senior captain Carl Jacobson’s RBI groundout. Morgan took a 4-1 lead and kept it until the sixth inning, when the Thunderbirds sent 14 batters to the plate and scored eight runs in the frame to take a 9-4 advantage.
On May 8, North Branford hosted Coginchaug on Senior Day won a 6-1 decision. Senior captains Steve Galluba, Jacobson, Mancini, and Tyler Sibley, along with fellow seniors Colin Baxter, Matt Cosgrove, Gio Parillo, and Lou Raffone, were honored prior to the contest. After the ceremony, junior Bret Fee spun a complete game one-hitter with 12 strikeouts for the Thunderbirds.
Coginchaug scored an unearned run in the first inning, but the T-Birds tied the game in the second when junior Enrique Diaz singled, stole second, and scored on a base hit by Parillo. In the third, North Branford added another run when Pollock doubled and scored on a single by Jacobson. The T-Birds broke open the game by scoring four runs in the fourth inning. Parillo, Mancini, Pollock, Jacobson, and freshman Dom Scalia all had big hits in the frame. For the game, Jacobson was 3-for-3 with three RBI, while Diaz and Pollock had two hits apiece. This was North Branford’s last Shoreline Conference game of the regular season. The T-Birds finished at 11-5 in league play to earn a spot in the Shoreline Tournament.
North Branford finished its week with a 6-1 loss to North Haven. North Branford’s lone run scored came in the sixth inning on an RBI double by Diaz. Pollock and Scalia finished the game with two hits each.
The Thunderbirds split a pair of non-conference contests last week to move to 12-1 this year. North Branford took its first defeat of the season by losing a 13-6 decision against New Fairfield on May 6, but came back to notch a 17-5 victory over Branford later in the week.
North Branford fell behind against New Fairfield early and was unable to come back. Senior captain Jessie Kilburn led the T-Birds with three goals, while junior captain Avonlea LeBeau, junior Sally Cucinotta, and freshman Olivia Toto scored one goal apiece. Junior Ali Barrett had two assists. Junior Carly Sorrentino recorded 10 saves in net.
Three days later, North Branford jumped out to a 9-1 lead in the first half and went on to get a 17-5 win versus Branford. Barrett led the way for the T-Birds with seven goals and four assists, while Kilburn scored four goals and added two assists. LeBeau and Cucinotta both had goals, and LeBeau contributed a pair of assists in the win. Toto and senior Cayleen Defaranos added one goal each, and Defaranos and junior Melanie Norton both finished with an assist. Sorrentino made eight saves to earn the victory in goal.
North Branford squared off against Cromwell on May 9 and prevailed by the final score of 18-8. The T-Birds improved to 9-5 on the season with this win.
North Branford took three defeats in last week’s action.
On May 6, North Branford lost to East Haven by the final score of 220-224 at Indian Springs Golf Club. Freshman Dakota Cooper finished with score a 50 for the T-Birds. Freshman Ryan Monde shot a 55, junior Aiden Ferrucci score a 57, and senior Nick DeNegre finished with a 62.
The next afternoon, North Branford took a 184-215 defeat against Cromwell at Indian Springs. Freshman Blake Pearson scored a 54, Cooper shot a 56, freshman Jalen Rossicone turned in a 57, DeNegre shot a 58, and Monde finished with a 59.
On May 8, the T-Birds dropped a 183-231 decision versus Hale-Ray at Fox Hopyard Golf Club to move to 0-11 on the year.
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