Sunday, November 28, 2021

Sports

Grizzlies Notch Wins Versus Mercy and Lauralton Hall

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Senior Amelia Rattet and the Guilford girls’ soccer team have won three-straight games to improve to 4-2-2 in their second season with Head Coach Regina Sullivan. Photo courtesy of Regina Sullivan

Senior Amelia Rattet and the Guilford girls’ soccer team have won three-straight games to improve to 4-2-2 in their second season with Head Coach Regina Sullivan. (Photo courtesy of Regina Sullivan)

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Senior Brenna Fissell and the Guilford girls’ soccer squad notched wins over Mercy and Lauralton Hall last week. Pictured ar far left is freshman Tea Gambardella. Photo courtesy of Regina Sullivan

Senior Brenna Fissell and the Guilford girls’ soccer squad notched wins over Mercy and Lauralton Hall last week. Pictured ar far left is freshman Tea Gambardella. (Photo courtesy of Regina Sullivan)

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Junior Arianna Tomassi had two assists when the Grizzlies earned a 2-1 victory versus Lauralton Hall on Oct. 1. Pictured on the left is senior Gabby Sansone. Photo courtesy of Regina Sullivan

Junior Arianna Tomassi had two assists when the Grizzlies earned a 2-1 victory versus Lauralton Hall on Oct. 1. Pictured on the left is senior Gabby Sansone. (Photo courtesy of Regina Sullivan)

In Regina Sullivan’s first year as head coach of the Guilford girls’ soccer team, she guided the Grizzlies to a successful season that saw them win the SCC Division B title on their way to a record of 8-3-1. Coach Sullivan’s expectations for the team are just as high this season, and she feels pleased to see the Grizzlies sporting a mark of 4-2-2 at the midway point of the campaign.

“The coaches are all really excited to be able to work with the whole program this year,” said Sullivan. “We were extremely lucky to be able to have a season last year, but due to COVID restrictions, we weren’t really able to spend much time working together as a program or coaching staff.”

With a large number of seniors in the program, Coach Sullivan elected to not name any captains for the 2021 season. Instead, Sullivan sees every senior athlete as a leader for Guilford’s underclass athletes. The Grizzlies’ senior class features Annabelle Doorack, Amelia Rattet, Taylor Farace, Gabby Sansone, Abby Moore, Olivia McMahon, Brenna Fissell, and Rachel Ellison.

“We’re excited to see all of the players this season. We couldn’t really see the program as a whole last year, let alone scrimmage against one another until several weeks into the season,” Sullivan said. “This year, from the start, we’ve been lucky enough to be allowed to all be together and train as a group in a variety of different combinations in order to see the players match up against, as well as learn from one another.”

After winning getting a win and a tie in its first five contests, Guilford has rattled off three victories in a row. Last week, Guilford hosted Mercy on Sept. 29 and won the game by a 3-0 score. Two days later, the Grizzlies traveled to Milford and notched a 2-1 win over Lauralton Hall.

Senior midfielder Sansone scored off an assist from junior midfielder Ava Pascarella in Guilford’s win against Mercy. The Grizzlies’ two other scores came off of own-goals by Mercy. Sophomore goalkeeper Lexi Handelman made four saves in the victory.

Freshman forward Tea Gambardella and junior midfielder Ines Martinez each scored a goal for Guilford in the win over Lauralton Hall. Both goals were assisted by junior midfielder Arianna Tomassi. Handelman stopped four shots in the win.

“I’m extremely proud of the girls for their work ethic and perseverance thus far, and I’m excited to see what the rest of the season will bring,” Coach Sullivan said. “We’ll continue working on responding quicker, both mentally and physically, than our opponents to increase our speed of play to get more shots on goal.”

A large part of the Grizzlies’ early success this season can be credited to the team’s backline. Junior center back Kat Bassegio is leading the defensive corps alongside center back Farace and outside backs Fissell and Rattet.

“Kat is a very solid defender. She is a consistent hard worker and seldomly makes mistakes,” said Sullivan. “The entire back four is doing really well.”

Coach Sullivan is happy with the progress that the Grizzlies are making on the pitch this year. Sullivan wants to keep growing as a coach as her players continue meshing together.

“I’m an educator and a coach. I am constantly trying to learn and improve my practice. It’s a work in progress,” Sullivan said. “With that being said, each season brings a new group of players with varying technical and tactical abilities. Many of these players train year-round with various programs, but they all come back together for their high school season. Finding the most effective combination of players with the best chemistry is something we’re working on.”

Guilford’s junior class additionally features Ava Lepro, Emerson Forselius, Evelina Rini, Olivia Weekes, Ava Pascarella, and Kailyn Scott. The Grizzlies’ roster also includes sophomore Madeleine Gasparini and freshmen Keira Reynolds and Claire Tuttle.

Guilford is playing a road game against Hand at the Surf Club in Madison on Thursday, Oct. 7 at 6 p.m. After that, the Grizzlies will face East Haven on the road at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 12.



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