2020 Killingworth Sports Year in Review
The athletes on the Haddam-Killingworth boys’ indoor track team take a victory lap after finishing in first place at the Shoreline Conference Championship for the second year in a row. (File photo by Kelley Fryer/The Source | Buy This Photo)
The H-K girls’ volleyball squad achieved an undefeated season that featured a record of 13-0 and a Shoreline Conference crown. (Photo courtesy of Robin Callender )
The Cougars’ girls’ soccer team defended its league title by earning a 3-2 versus Old Lyme in the Shoreline Conference final during the 2020 fall season. (File photo by Kelley Fryer/The Source | Buy This Photo)
The H-K boys’ soccer team saw a total turnaround by claiming the Shoreline Conference crown its first campaign with Head Coach Mark Mead this fall. (File photo by Kelley Fryer/The Source | Buy This Photo)
It was a big year for Killingworth sports in 2020 with several Haddam-Killingworth squads taking home some hardware. The boys’ indoor track team defended its Shoreline title during the winter season, while several Cougars’ clubs claimed conference crowns in the fall. Time to recap some of the best moments of the year.
The Lyman Hall/Haddam-Killingworth/Coginchaug boys’ hockey squad was in the middle of playing in states when the COVID-19 pandemic brought the winter season to a close. However, there were still plenty of notable moments for H-K’s teams throughout the season.
The Haddam-Killingworth boys’ indoor track team took first place at the Shoreline Conference Championship for the second-straight year and then came in second place at the Class S State Championship.
Junior Matt Jennings finished first in the 1,000, the 1,600, and the 3,200 at the Shoreline meet. He went on to take first place in the 1,000 at the Class S meet, second at the State Open, and third in the New England Championship.
H-K’s 1,600 sprint medley relay (SMR) of junior Aidan Coleman, senior Seth Regan, senior Dmytri Mallon, and Jennings finished first at both the Class S meet and the State Open.
Also finishing first for the Cougars at Shorelines were senior Seth Regan in the 55-meter dash, senior Luke Sodergren in the 55 hurdles, and junior John Bruder in the shot put, along with the 4x200 relay of senior Dalton Modehn, Mallon, Coleman, and Regan, plus the SMR of Mallon, Regan, Sodergren, and junior Max Cozean.
The H-K girls’ indoor track squad finished second at the Shoreline Conference Championship and took seventh place in the Class S State Championship.
Junior Kedarjah Lewis claimed first place in the 300-meter dash, while fellow junior Gabrielle Lester won shot put for H-K at Shorelines. Lewis went on to finish third in the 55-meter dash at the Class S meet and then take second place at the State Open. Lewis also placed second in the long jump and the 300 at the Class S meet, after which she finished sixth in each event at the Open and then competed in the 55 and the long jump at New Englands.
The H-K wrestling team finished in second place at the Class S State Championship and then came in 11th place at the State Open.
Junior Thomas Perry claimed the Class S title in the 295-pound weight class for the Cougars. Perry went on to finish in third place at the State Open and then won two bouts at the New England Championship.
Sophomore Sofia Guarino competed for H-K at the inaugural Girls’ Wrestling Invitational. Guarino took fifth place in the 132-pound division at the meet.
Freshman Juliana Gagliardi finished in 10th place for the all-around while representing the H-K/Morgan-Hale-Ray gymnastics team at the State Open. Gagliardi posted a fifth-place finish on the beam for her best performance at the Open. Gagliardi was slated to compete at the New England Championship, which was canceled.
The H-K/Morgan/Valley Regional boys’ swimming and diving team posted a regular-season record of 9-1 and then finished in second place at the Nutmeg Conference Championship. The team would have competed at the Class M State Championship had the meet not been canceled.
H-K students Jimmy Clemente, Eli Houlton, and Zach Houlton were the senior captains of the team. Eli Houlton was named the Swimmer of the Meet for the Nutmeg Championship after winning the 200 freestyle, the 500 freestyle, and swimming on H-K’s victorious 400 freestyle relay with Clemente, Mazziotti, and freshman Jack Ferguson. Mazziotti also took first place in the 100 freestyle and the 100 backstroke.
The Lyman Hall/Haddam-Killingworth/Coginchaug boys’ ice hockey squad finished with a mark of 11-9-1 while qualifying for the Division II State Tournament. The team earned a 5-0 win versus Woodstock Academy in the first round of states before the rest of the tournament was canceled.
The Cougars’ boys’ basketball squad made the Shoreline Conference Tournament and the Division V State Tournament, finishing the year with an overall mark of 8-13.
H-K dropped a 58-47 decision against Valley Regional in the Shoreline Tournament. The Cougars went on to take a 65-52 loss to Watertown in the first round of states.
The Cougars were led by senior captains Trey Callender and Sam Erskine. Senior Giacomo Volpicelli was the team’s leading scorer. Junior Jimmy McGoey earned All-Shoreline Conference Second Team accolades for Head Coach Jim Abbott’s squad.
The H-K girls’ basketball team finished with a record of 6-16 while qualifying for the Class M State Tournament. The Cougars took a 64-47 loss against Canton in the first round of the tournament.
The high school season was canceled this spring because of the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, H-K’s baseball, softball, lacrosse, tennis, outdoor track, and golf teams were unable to compete.
There were four H-K teams that staked their claim to a conference title this fall. H-K’s girls’ volleyball, girls’ soccer, boys’ soccer, and boys’ cross country squads won Shoreline Conference championships in the fall campaign.
The Haddam-Killingworth girls’ volleyball team put together a perfect season that saw the squad post a record of 13-0 and claim the Shoreline Conference championship.
After going 10-0 in the regular season, the Cougars earned a 3-0 win over North Branford in the Shoreline quarterfinals and a 3-2 victory versus Coginchaug in the semis. Head Coach Robin Callender’s squad followed that up with a 3-0 victory against Hale-Ray in the championship match.
H-K was led by senior captains Meghan Doxsee, Lizzy Celano, and Addy Duquette. Doxsee, senior Caitlyn Esposito, and junior Jess Timothy made the All-Shoreline Conference First Team. Doxsee was also named to All-State Class M Team. Junior Audrey Snyder made the All-Shoreline Second Team, and Duquette received All-Shoreline Honorable Mention.
The Haddam-Killingworth girls’ soccer team claimed its second-straight Shoreline Conference title on its way to an overall record of 9-2-1.
The Cougars earned a 6-1 win over Cromwell and a 2-0 victory against East Hampton in the first two rounds of the Shoreline tourney. H-K went on to notch a 3-2 victory over Old Lyme in the final to defend its title.
H-K’s senior captains were Kaitlyn Parri and Morgan Madore. Senior Autumn Walton, senior Kedarjah Lewis, and junior Yumi Imai scored the goals for the Cougars in the Shoreline title game. Junior goalie Brianna Nugent made 12 saves for Head Coach Mike Shea’s squad.
The H-K boys’ soccer team turned things around in its first season with Head Coach Mike Mead. The Cougars finished the year with a record of 8-3-2 and captured the Shoreline Conference crown.
H-K netted a 1-0 win over East Hampton in the championship game of the Shoreline Conference Tournament. The Cougars had advanced to the final by claiming a 3-1 win versus Old Lyme in the quarterfinals and a 4-2 victory against Portland in the semifinals.
Senior Colby Whitehead and junior Ben Williams served as H-K’s captains on the season. Senior goalie Cal Braren made seven saves for the Cougars in the Shoreline final. Freshman Cole Merriam scored the lone goal of the game.
The Haddam-Killingworth boys’ cross country team won its seventh-straight conference title by taking first place at the Shoreline Conference Championship.
Senior captain Matt Jennings ran a time of 16:17 to earn first place in the league race for the second year in a row. Junior Caleb Freeman took fifth place for the Cougars, who also saw junior Greyson Merola (11th), sophomore Jack Insalaco (13th), and junior Andrew Hedges (22nd) also scored points at the meet.
The Cougars’ girls’ cross country squad posted a second-place performance at the Shoreline Conference Championship meet.
Sophomore Isabel Berardino finished in second place overall to lead the pack for Head Coach Matt Diglio’s squad. Junior Ava DiMatteo (8th), senior Kathy Melgar (11th), junior Brianna Minervino (12th), and freshman Sydney Adelberg (14th) were among the other athletes who competed at the meet. Meara Bodak, Melgar, and Gabby Flaherty served as H-K’s senior captains.
The Haddam-Killingworth girls’ swimming and diving team posted a record of 5-0 for the season.
Senior captain Nina Lamb broke her own school record in the 100-yard breaststroke by swimming a time of 1:10.69 during H-K’s final meet of the season. Senior captain Addy Hawkins also served as a captain for the Cougars during the campaign.
The H-K field hockey squad played eight games during the fall season. The Cougars finished with a record of 0-8 on the year.
Sports Editor Chris Piccirillo
contributed to this story