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The Sports Department Enfield Edition

Enfield • East Windsor • Somers • Stafford

Also Serving Ellington • South Windsor • Tolland • Vernon

Enfield Off To A Hot Start

January 18-31, 2011

Where Are They Now?

Former EWHS Coach Found Playing As A Team Is The Key To Success

By Steve Smith The Sports Department

Enfield’s Tre Preston has been one of the top basketball players in the state this season. Check out all the high school action beginning on page 6. Photo by Steve Palmer, The Sports Department, www. stevepalmerphotography.com

Inside The Sports Department Columnist Jon Buzby talks about supporting your local team during the Winter blues. See page 3.

Community MVP keeps the Stafford sports scene alive. See Page 5.

Despite the many great players Mel Kleckner coached in his 28 years as East Windsor’s boys’ basketball coach, he always taught his squads to play as a team. “Basic fundamentals, teamwork, ball-handing discipline,” Kleckner said, “was what led to most of our success. “We seemed to work with that. We didn’t have a lot of self-made players.” Kleckner had a 398-276 record, and won six league titles from 1960-88. He was named CIAC Coach of the Year in 1979. Kleckner’s teams also narrowly lost Class S State tournament games to Ellington in 1972, and St. Thomas Aquinas in 1975. Former UConn coach Hugh Greer also employed that type of coaching philosophy, and Kleckner said he patterned himself after Greer. It was always about having a plan, and sticking to it, no matter who is on the court, with the idea that the players with better skills would make the team better anyway. “We just liked to play as a team as best we could,” Kleckner said. “We always had a few players who were better than the other ones, ability-wise, but they’d always work toward helping the other guys out. That’s the way we worked. We’d try different defenses, and make sure we knew what everyone was supposed to be doing.” Over the years, Kleckner would alter the game plan, according to personnel, and he looked at each year as a new challenge. “If we had a lot of quick players, we’d do a lot of pressing,” he said. “It would depend on the players’ abilities.” Among his many great memories, Kleckner recalls a season that went from night to day. “My first year at East Windsor, we started off 1-8, and ended up 8-1 the second half,” he said. “We beat Bloomfield in the last game of the season, at Bloomfield, and then they went on to win the state championship that year.” Chris Corkum was a history teacher at EWHS, and Kleckner’s assistant coach from 1976 to 1982. “I was a young guy just out of college,” said Corkum. “He was the greatest person I could get around at that time, because he helped me focus. As a coach, the number one thing I learned from him was how

simple to keep things.” Corkum said Kleckner eschewed complex offenses because he knew they were difficult to execute, especially with a Class S squad. “He was very good at sizing up how the other team was taking advantage of us, and making adjustments,” Corkum said, “very simple adjustments that anyone could understand.” Kleckner was also cooler under pressure, Corkum said. “The tighter the game got, the more clearer he thought,” Corkum said, “especially compared to the opposing coach. He was the best at managing time with two minutes to go in the game.” Corkum added that Kleckner would often scout East Windsor’s opponents and then come up with specific things to practice before playing them that “were applicable to what we had to do in that game.” Corkum said Kleckner was, and still is, a “supreme gentleman,” “honest to a fault,” and when asked advice on a personal matter, “you knew it wouldn’t go any further than right there.” “If we didn’t have good players,” Corkum said, “he’d say, ‘look, we don’t have good players, and here’s how we’re going to have to go about this now.’” Before coaching in East Windsor, Kleckner coached for three years at Peoples Academy High School in Morrisville, Vermont. “There was a lot of traveling when you played up there,” he said. “In the wintertime, we’d go play Bradford, near the New Hampshire line. We’d leave at 1 in the afternoon for a 7 o’clock game.” Peoples won the state title the year after Kleckner left to come to Connecticut – a testament, perhaps in part, to the type of program he liked to build. Kleckner stopped coaching in 1988, and See “Team”, Page 4


The Sports Department

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January 18-31, 2011

The Sports Department Pickup Locations Look At All The Places You Can Find US!

SUBWAY SANDWICH SHOPS

Somers • Somers High School – 59 Ninth District Road • Somers Middle School – 59 Ninth District Road • Somers Recreation Department – 19 Battle Street • Somers Pharmacy – 629 Main Street • Somers Ace Hardware – 641 Main Street • Somers Golf Center – 349 Main Street seasonal •Pleasant View Golf Center – 452 South Road seasonal • Cedar Knob Golf Course – 446 Billings Road seasonall • Subway Sandwich Shop – 12 South Road • Monas Pizza and Wings – 48 South Road • Plaza Restaurant – 48 South Road • Rich’s Drive In – 74 South Road • Italian Villa Restaurant – 15 South Road • DB Mart – 629 Main Street • Joanna’s Café – 145 Main Street • Mickey Finns Café – 124 Main Street • Frankies Firehouse Restaurant – 112 Main Street • Rockville Bank – 612 Main Street East Windsor • East Windsor High School – 76 South Main Street The Sports Department is published monthly, and is available free of charge, at display stands in approved private and public establishments, and through authorized distributors only. No part of this paper may be reproduced without the written permission of the publisher. The Sports Department is not responsible for any editorial comment (other than its own), typographical errors from advertisements submitted as camera ready or any reproductions of advertisements submitted as camera ready. If an advertisement does not meet our standards of acceptance, we may revise or cancel it at any time, whether or not it has been already acknowledged and/or previously published. The advertiser assumes sole responsibility for all statements contained in submitted copy and will protect and indemnify The Sports Department, it owners, publishers, and employees against any and all liability, loss or expense arising out of

claims for libel, unfair trade names, patents, copyrights and propriety rights, and all violations of the right of privacy or other violations resulting from the publication by this newspaper of advertising copy. Publisher shall be under no liability for failure, for any reason, to insert an advertisement. Publisher shall not be liable by reason of error, omission and/or failure to insert any part of an advertisement. Publisher will not be liable for delay or failure in performance in publication and/or distribution if all or any portion of an issue is delayed or suspended for any reason. The publisher will exercise reasonable judgment in these instances and will make adjustments for the advertiser where and when appropriate. The Sports Department assumes no responsibility for unsolicated material or reproductions made by advertisers.

• East Windsor Middle School – 76 South Main Street• East Windsor Town Hall – 25 School Street • At The Dam Restaurant – 100 Main Sreet • Maine Fish Market – 60 Bridge Street • Sam Bucas Restaurant – 110 Main Street • Henrys Pizzeria – 255 South Main Street • Nonnas Pizza Restaurant – 140 South Main Street Box • Jonathan Pascos Restaurant – 31 South Main Street • LaNotte Restaurant – 17 Thompson Road • Sofias Restaurant – 136 Prospect Hill Road • Pickle Jar Deli – 33 South Main Street • Blimpies Subs and Salads – 2 North Road • It’s a Grind Coffe Shop – 2 North Road • Rick’s II Auto Repair – 140 South Main Street • Revays Garden and Gift Shop – 266 North Road • Jakes Hamburgers – 137 Prospect Hill Road Enfield • Enfield High School – 1264 Enfield Street • Fermi High School – 124 North Maple Street • JFK Middle School – 155 Raffia Road • Enfield Twin Rinks – 1 Prior Road • Enfield Town Hall – 820 Enfield Street • Enfield Recreation Department – 19 North Main Street

• Angelo Lamagna Activity Center – 19 North Main Street • LuLu’s Restaurant – 151 Hazard Ave • Bacos Pizza – 410 Enfield Street • Buonavita Restaurant – 284 North Maple Street • Enfield Pizza Palace – 524 Enfield Street • Frankies Firehouse Restaurant – 138 South Road • Country Diner – 111 Hazard Ave • Enfield Physical Therapy – 145 Hazard Ave • Doctor David W Cordes – 145 Hazard Ave • Troiano Oil – 777 Enfield Street • Chicago Sams – 95 Elm Street • Smyth’s Ice Cream – 75 Hazard Ave seasonal • Whole Donut – 309 Hazard Ave Stafford • Stafford High School – 145 Orcutville Road • Stafford Middle School – 21 Levinthal Run • Stafford Town Hall – 1 Main Street • Stafford Recreation Department – 1 Main Street • Stafford House of Pizza – 19 Main Street • Judy’s Country Store – 182 West Stafford Road • Mill Pond Country Store – 220 East Street • Workers Federal Credit Union – 70 West Stafford Road • Stafford Savings Bank – 2 Furnace Avenue • Chelle’s Diner – 107 West Stafford Road • Stafford Speedway – 55 West Street seasonal • 7-Eleven – 110 West Main Street • Cumberland Farms – 9 River Road • A & B Eagle Mart – 2 Spring Street

The Sports Department is published on the first and third Wednesday of each month and is available at more than 250 locations across eight towns in North Central Connecticut. More than 50,000 readers currently enjoy The Sports Department’s comprehensive coverage of the local sports scene. If you know of an establishment that would like to carry The Sports Department, please call our office at 860-872-0873 or email our publisher, Kevin Hayes at - kevin@thesportsdept.com.

The Sports Department

P.O. Box 746, Ellington, CT 06029 860-872-0TSD (0873) • 860-614-5866 • thesportsdept.com

Publisher: Kevin Hayes • kevin@thesportsdept.com Editor: Brendan Faherty Production Manager: Patty Hunter Contributing Writers: Jon Buzby • Tom Ainsworth • Steve Smith • Reid L. Walmark • David Donner • Nate Owen • Brooke De Lenche • David Heuschkel • Steve Krajewski • Tim Larew • Erin Quinlan • Robert Tedford • Brendon Willis • Katy Sprout • Katie Powers • Dan Schofer • Ryan Kane • Bruce Watt Photography: Steve Palmer • Andre Dumais • Kate Gorton • Bernie Sheridan • Aldo Mazzadra

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January 18-31, 2011

The Sports Department

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Don’t Let The Winter Blues Keep You From Having Fun By Jon Buzby The Sports Department To nobody’s surprise, winter has hit Connecticut in full force. And while pitchers and catchers report to spring training in less than three weeks — to Florida and Arizona that is — the cold temperatures here at home will be sticking around for a bit longer and can make weekends stuck indoors seem as long as an entire baseball season. Indoor youth sports practices and games can help pass the time a little, but during the many hours spent at home before and after, what’s a child to do? Or, should I say, what’s a parent to do with the child? I’m not going to suggest you clear the living room furniture, throw down bases and hope the television doesn’t get whacked with a ball. Nor would I suggest trying to figure out what piece of furniture to use as a soccer goal. A ping-pong or pool table is a great resource if you have one, but let’s be serious, how many of us do? And even if you do, that’s not getting you or your kids out of the house. So instead of letting the winter blues encapsulate the imaginations of your

children — images of “The Cat in the Hat” come to mind — consider going to watch a local high school or college game and support the dedicated amateur players in your area. While attending a game at the University of Connecticut may not always be feasible, you can take your children to the local high school or small college game for less than a night out at the movies. Basketball, wrestling, swimming and hockey seasons are in full swing and there are most likely games or meets in your area almost every night of the week. Taking your little basketball player to see a high school hoops game is a great way for him or her to see basketball at a different level. Imagine how great it will be for him to actually see players in a zone defense with their hands up in the air. My guess is it will have a much bigger impact than any of the times you’ve yelled “hands up” from the bleachers. It’s also a chance to take your kids to watch a sport they’ve never played or seen. Hockey and swimming are perfect examples. Given the costs and accessibility issues of these sports, many kids aren’t afforded the opportunity to participate in them. But that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be exposed to these sports. Just don’t be surprised, or caught

off guard financially, if you return home and one kid wants skates and a stick, and the other a Speedo and goggles. And don’t forget how important it is for your boys to see girls play. Imagine the look on your son’s faces when he realizes girls can not only skate, but handle a puck while doing so, and lay out some pretty mean checks. It’s important to teach boys about girls playing sports at an early age to eliminate stereotyping. This is especially important if there are no female siblings playing youth sports. As mentioned in a previous column, going to a roller or ice rink, indoor batting cage or other sports-related place where your child can be active is a great idea, too. But, let’s face it, not everyone has that opportunity, and doing it often can get very expensive. But don’t fret. Just like those indoor activities, going to see a game will still provide your child what kids look forward to the most at any event — concessions. Winter is already almost half over, so take advantage of warm indoor activities before it’s too late. Even if that activity is simply to cheer. Jon Buzby’s columns appear in newspapers and magazines around the country as well as numerous Web sites. E-mail your comments to jonbuzby@ hotmail.com

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The Sports Department

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Team Before Individual

Continued from Page 1

retired from teaching Phys. Ed. four years later. He also served as EWHS’s Athletic Director. Today, Kleckner still lives in East Windsor, and said he sees a lot of his former players around, with whom he still has a great rapport. He spends his free time hunting and fishing, traveling with his wife, and visiting his children and grand-children. Two of Kleckner’s daughters live in California, and one in Florida. His son, Mel Jr. lives outside of Boston, where one of Kleckner’s grandsons has picked up the basketball, and may be a natural. “An 8th-grader, he’s 6-foot-two-and-ahalf,” Kleckner said, “with a size 13 shoe. He’s going to be a big one.” Kleckner has visited Hawaii, California, and Alaska with his wife. In his days in the military, he visited everywhere in Europe, and “everywhere down to Saudi Arabia.” Kleckner said he can recall a time before the NCCC, and there were fewer teams around. “We had to go out looking for games,” he said. “When I first came [to East Windsor], we belonged to the Charter Oak Conference, but that was too far away. I asked our principal to get us out of there. We went from 20 games to 15 games for a while. But, later we were all set.” Nowadays, Kleckner said the competition between high schools is “fouled up,” because school enrollments fluctuate, with some of the smaller towns having large student populations (and therefore, larger pools of players), and vice versa.

“I remember when Enfield and Fermi were some of the largest schools in the state,” he said. “Now they’re talking about merging them. I remember playing [nowclass LL-powerhouse] Glastonbury when it was what we called a ‘D’ school.” Kleckner said he watches the NBA and the UConn Huskies, but said his appreciation for the game on that level has diminished. “It’s become too physical,” he said. “The height and speed factors have made it so much one-on-one that the team concept is gone. The kids turn pro too early.” Kleckner added that in his observations, when a smaller school plays a top-level college team like UConn, they’re far outmatched because the larger ones recruit the big athletes and the smaller ones are still focusing on the team concept. Kleckner will still check in on East Windsor’s team once in a while. A few years ago, when the team was headed for its Class S title in 2007, Kleckner drove to see the semifinal match vs. Granby, which was played on a neutral court in Suffield, despite having a tear in his Achilles’ tendon. “I was ready to go into the hospital to have it operated on, because it wasn’t completely severed,” he said. “It severed that night. It was dangling. I had to use my left foot on the gas. They won that night, but I missed the final game.” Kleckner said he misses his East Windsor High School days, and retired because he just didn’t have that “give it all you got,” anymore, and decided to “let someone else try it.”

January 18-31, 2011


January 18-31, 2011

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The Sports Department

Community MVP (Most Valuable Person)

Local Dentist Helps Raise Funds For Hoop Programs

By Reid L. Walmark The Sports Department

There are two ways to deal with bad news. One is to accept it and try to learn from the bad news if there’s a lesson to be gained. The other is to try to fight it and undo the injustice. Neil Hoss, a Tolland-based dentist who lives in Stafford, learned the Stafford Board of Education’s budget trimming led to the decision to cut out the middle school Stafford Middle School students hold a check donated by Dr. Neil Hoss, who helped to spearhead the fundraising effort. Picboys and girls basketball tured with Hoss (back right) are students Jessica Simpson, Alex teams. Instead of allowing Hoss, Catherine Hoss, assistant principal Marco Pelliccia and Stafford MIddle School basketball coaches Ed Jakus and Don more than two dozen Bergeron. Photo provided by Neil Hoss. aspiring hoopsters to lose out on a competitive season, Many of those players could have turned Hoss reacted to the news by trying to raise to the established travel teams for funds to reinstate the teams. The Stafford seventh- and eighth-graders for 2010Middle School teams are still around, 11 and not missed out on a season, but thanks to Hoss, even though not quite all Hoss recognized the cost of joining these the money has been collected. teams is prohibitive for some families, while playing on the school team is not. This act of determination, though, is He thought it only fair to give the players not the first time Hoss’s commitment to the option to choose between the two youth sports has been recognized and programs. appreciated by the citizens of Stafford. For his many years of active participation “If they didn’t play [middle school in a variety of sports in town, Hoss, the basketball], that would be OK,” said Hoss, president of Stafford Youth Basketball, has a basketball and baseball player at Tolland been named Community MVP for January High School (Class of 1979) who played by The Sports Department. a year of junior varsity basketball at Clark University. “But I figure, the more they

Rockville Bank is proud to sponsor this month’s Community MVP

play, the better they get. I didn’t want those who wanted to play for the school team to miss the opportunity.” The teams Hoss, 49, and his associates helped to bail out at the middle school needed $6,500.00 to operate this season, after the initial cost was projected at $8,000.00. Most of that has been raised and a deadline for balance of the payment has no firm date. Hoss turned over a check for $5,200.00 in early December. The group is accepting donations. Mark Fontanella stepped down as president of Stafford Youth Basketball after last season. “I was looking for someone I would feel comfortable handing it over to,” said Fontanella, in his fourth year as the Stafford Board of Education chairman. “He has the same passion and dedication to make the program better. He has been all over youth sports for years.” In addition to running Stafford Youth Basketball, Hoss is vice president of the

Stafford Little League. Prior to that, he was the league’s safety director for five years as well as serving on the board of directors. Hoss is head coach of the travel basketball team for fifth- and sixth-grade girls, on which his daughter, Catherine, 11, plays. He is assistant coach for the eighthgrade boys travel team, where his son Alex, 13, plays. His oldest, Luke, 15, is on the Stafford High School JV team. The growth of one of Hoss’s sixth-grade players, Ashley Dempsey, in a short span this season typifies what Hoss enjoys about coaching youth sports. She showed bravery and then confidence through his encouragement. Dempsey had proven she is an accurate shooter in practices but was timid to launch shots in games. “‘I can’t do it, I can’t do it,’ she would keep saying to me,” Hoss said about trying to get Dempsey to display her skills in games. “I said, ‘You can do it, you can do it.’ Well, I got her into a game and she made two shots. “She had the biggest smile on her face that I had ever seen,” Hoss said. “That was great.” Fontanella says Hoss makes great connections with his players. “He focuses on the strengths of the players and draws it out of them, and he makes them see that.”


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January 18-31, 2011

East Windsor

EW Wrestling Has Its Hopes Set High

By Brendon Willis The Sports Department

With a 6-6 record, head coach Jason Flynn is excited about the East Windsor wrestling program. The team has a 2-2 record in conference, and Coach Flynn thinks the team has a chance to finish 4-3 in the NCCC, which is a realistic goal but would be its best finish in years. Captains Seth Miller and Eric Strba have wrestled extremely well in their respective 140 and 112 pound classes, and each hopes to contend in their weight class for the NCCC title. The team knows that hard work in the offseason has been a huge part of achieving success this season. Coach Flynn thinks that all nineteen of his wrestlers are committed, hard workers, and calls them “just a great group of kids.” One main point of emphasis this year has been minimizing pins so that everyone can keep wrestling and keep competing. If East Windsor can continue to do this, they have a great shot in postseason competition. Boys Basketball The East Windsor boys basketball team began the season 1-5, but did play tough in many of its games. In a win over Wilcox Tech, senior captain Rick Reilly posted a double-double with thirteen points and ten rebounds. Co-captain, senior Ryan Briggs, has played well all season and head coach John Cessario thinks that Briggs is a calming influence on the court. Another season highlight was a triple overtime thriller against Canton, in which

Jeff Guiglielmo of East Windsor upends an East Granby player in the Panthers’s 52-42 loss. Girls Basketball With a 4-6 start to the year, the girls basketball team in East Windsor is making huge strides. After finishing with just one Ryan Briggs shoots a jumper over the outstretched arms of an East win last season, this is a big step-up Granby defender. for the program. The team worked hard East Windsor ended up falling 73-66. East on conditioning and has Windsor’s biggest weakness thus far has beaten a few opponents been turnovers, and limiting those will this year by shooting their certainly be a focus from here on out. In free throws very well. In a the win over Wilcox Tech, Coach Cessario win over Granby to open said that the team limited its turnovers, their season, East Windsor and was able to do the same in the triple was 13 of 14 from the line. overtime game as well. Kevin Mocadlo In that game, Kelly Strba has put in some points for the Panthers, scored 17 points, which was especially in a loss to Somers, where he a career high. The team’s led the team with 12. leading scorer from last season, Briana Matteson, added sixteen points for the Panthers. In a recent game, a loss to Somers, Myra Pantoja scored thirteen points to lead the team. She, along with teammate Melissa Wabble, played well Tri-Town’s Billy Chevelier unloads a slap shot as Suffield’s earlier in the year against Brendan Leonardi defends. Photo by Steve Palmer, The Sports Granby. Last year’s leading Department, www.stevepalmerphotography.com rebounder Kayla Hersom has been strong again on the boards this To Advertise in season.

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East Windsor’s Briana Matteson tries to post up Briana Heald of Stafford. Photo by Steve Palmer, The Sports Department, www.stevepalmerphotography.com


Enfield

January 18-31, 2011 Enfield Parks and Recreation

Open Volleyball To Be Held At Eli Whitney School

By Alison Alberghini-Durler The Sports Department

The Enfield Recreation Department seeks to provide quality leisure opportunities, which contribute to the environment, needs and interest of the people of Enfield. Recreation is recognized as a necessary service to the community and an integral part of Enfield’s health and welfare. A variety of programs are offered for toddlers, youth and adults through the Department. For additional information on any of our programs including the programs listed below contact the Recreation office at 860253-6420. Adult Open Gym Volleyball A program designed for recreational play is held on Monday evenings,through March 1 from 6 p.m.-9 p.m at the Eli Whitney School gym from 6 p.m.-9 p.m.. There will be no program on Feb. 21. There is no league play during open gym. Pick-up games are arranged amongst the participants. Proof of age and residency is required. Participants must have information form and waiver on file at the gym to participate. Forms may be filled out the first night you attend. There is no volleyball when the school is closed. Please note that if the gym gets over crowded, residents will get first priority to play. Nightly fee is $2 for residents and $2.50 for non-residents. Adult Open Gym Basketball The Enfield Recreation Department hosts

Open Gym Basketball time for adults 18 and over. Participants must show proof of age and residency to participate in addition to having a program waiver on site where they participate. There is no basketball when school is closed or there is a conflicting school activity. Please note that if the gym gets over crowded, residents will get first priority to play. Nightly fee is $2 for residents and $2.50 for non-residents. For complete information including program dates, times and locations visit the Town’s website at www.enfield-ct.gov . Boston Celtics Bus Trip Here’s your chance to join the Enfield Recreation Department to watch some of the best players in the NBA, don’t miss out on all the action! The Boston Celtics will play the Washington Wizards on Friday, April 8th at 7:30 p.m.. The trip includes motor coach transportation and tickets in section 320(subject to change) of the TD Garden. Bus will arrive in Boston around 4 p.m. allowing time for dinner or shopping before the game. The bus departs Enfield Town Hall parking lot at 2 p.m. for Boston. Bus Departs Boston immediately following the game. Fee: $89.00 per person The Enfield Recreation Department is located at 19 North Main Street in the Angelo Lamagna Activity Center. The office is open Monday - Friday, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. To contact the office call 860-253-6420 or visit us on the web at www.enfield-ct.gov.

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Enfield

Student Athlete of the Month Nickname: Nick Accomplishments: All-Conference Golf GPA: 9.5/12 Other sports: Golf How do you prepare for a game: Listen to music, stick handle with a golf ball, stretching, and using a jump-rope. Thoughts on the season: We have a very small, tight-knit team who works well together and is a very hard working group. Toughest team to play against: No game this season will be easy, but the sky is the limit on our success with the team we have assembled. Favorite sports memory: Winning the state championship in PeeWee A hockey and playing in the regional tournament. Favorite memory of high school: Playing high school sports in general is a very good memory I will always have. Role model or inspirational person in your life: My role model in sports would have to be Tiger Woods. He always showed up to tournaments completely prepared and embodied the theme of practice makes perfect. Most embarrassing moment: I don’t have a most embarrassing moment. Toughest challenge I’ve overcome: Trying to change my lack of self disci-

Nicholas Smith Hockey pline and motivation in high school. Favorite athlete: Tiger Woods Person I’d most like to meet: Rickie Fowler Favorite way to relax: Listening to music Favorite class: AP Calculus Favorite snack food: Apples Favorite band: Eminem Favorite restaurant: Acapulcos Red Sox or Yankees: Red Sox Favorite movie: Never Back Down/ Miracle Favorite TV show: Tosh.O Plans after high school: Attending a 4-year college to play golf

Beginning in 2011, Awards & More in Enfield will provide commemorative plaques for The Sports Department Student Athletes of The Month. Awards & More is located at 492 Enfield Street, Enfield.


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Enfield

January 18-31, 2011

Preston Leads Raiders To Hot Start On The Hardwood By Nate Owen The Sports Department

Paul Lima takes a wide open jump shot during Enfield’s 64-58 win over Ellington. Photo by Steve Palmer, The Sports Department, www. stevepalmerphotography.com

never satisfied With four starters having with the way graduated from last season’s our defense 21-5 team, it wouldn’t plays. We be unreasonable to can definitely expect the Raiders to pick it up and struggle out of the gate. get better on But Enfield has come executions.” together faster then head coach Cory O’Connell could have imagined, Girls winning seven of their Basketball first eight games. With only one “We’ve definitely come senior and large together a little quicker contingent of then I thought,” O’Connell players getting said. “A lot of guys have their first varsity stepped up; everyone minutes, it’s a who is getting time on learning process the floor is definitely for the Enfield contributing.” girls team, as With four starters gone, they started Hugh Lindo skies for a rebound their season opponents have been in front of Ellington’s Brannen keying on junior guard 0-8. Wesley. Photo by Steve Palmer, Trechone Preston, “We’re The Sports Department, www. who entered the coming along,” stevepalmerphotography.com season needing 398 head coach points for 1,000 in his career. Bruce Hargaves said. “We’ve But O’Connell said the extra improved as far as turnovers attention on Preston has opened up and rebounding, our defense space for other players, including is getting better. Our younger Enfield’s Wendy Paul leaps to block the shot of Fermi’s Hugh Lindo, who is a key rebounder players are getting experience. Stacey Kraucunas. Photo by Steve Palmer, The Sports and has produced a double-double in We haven’t played a lot of ball Department, www.stevepalmerphotography.com three of his last five games, and Paul yet.” varsity in the future. Lima, who has contributed offensively. Hargraves said co-captains Emily Rund “We want to get some of the new kids Tony Romano and John Cerrato have and Hannah Richards have been playing where they are in a position to come in provided key minutes off the bench. well, while Wendy Paul has contributed at and help,” Hargraves said. “I’m happy with While the season has gone well point guard and Rachel Kaliff has been a the progress. It can be frustrating at times, thus far, O’Connell said he is always force on the boards. but I like the fact that the kids are still out looking to improve consistency on For the rest of the year, Hargraves there playing hard. [Sometimes] that’s not defense. said he is looking to get his team more easy being in a transitional group.” “The guys get mad at me, at experience and put some of his younger practice” O’Connell said. “But I’m players in a position to contribute on See “Enfield Sports”, Page 10


Fermi

January 18-31, 2011

9

Fermi Indoor Track Team Making Strides

By Nate Owen The Sports Department

A young boys and girls indoor track team has flown under the radar in the early going, but Fermi head coach Dan O’Connell has seen strides in his team through the first month of the season. O’Connell said the boys team began the year with a wealth of inexperienced athletes, but has already had some athletes qualify for states while others are on the verge on of getting there. “It’s fun and exciting as a coach to watch the kids develop,” O’Connell said. “Some kids have already, and more are about ready to.” On the boys side, Mike Nguyen has qualified for states in the 55 meter dash, while Anthony O’Connell qualified in the long jump. Those two, along with Carlos Muniz and Garrett Guimond, are a part of the 4x200 relay which also has secured a place in the state meet. Middle distance runners Quentin Coppler and Steve Rabida-Smith haven’t qualified for states yet, but O’Connell said he expects both to make a statement in coming meets. For the girls, Rachel Van Gilder has qualified for states in both the 55 and 300 meter dash. Courtney Rider is off to a terrific start as well, having earned a spot in states for the high jump. O’Connell said long distance runner Katie Saltzgiver is another potential state qualifier over the next few weeks. “It’s a hard working and happy group,” O’Connell said. “That’s about as good as it gets for a coach.”

Girls Basketball The Falcons started the year 1-7, with their lone win coming against cross town rival Enfield. Fermi’s Kerry Davis earned a spot on the Fermi Rotary All Tournament Team, which was held from Dec. 28 to 29.

Not so fast. Fermi’s Kerry Davis steals the ball right out of Enfield’s Rachel Kaliff’s hands. Photo by Steve Palmer, The Sports Department, www.stevepalmerphotography. com

Hockey Despite getting off to a tough start, the Falcons (1-4-1) have shown signs of turning it around. And it’s all starting with a better forecheck and more active play in the offensive end. “We’re definitely playing with a little more jam,” head coach Frank Genovese said. “The players are more active; we’re starting to chase defensemen down rather then waiting for someone else to do it.” The increased effort in the offensive zone has helped alleviate some pressure in the Falcons’ own zone. “We’re going to spend time in our zone during games; there’s no doubt about that,” he said. “But we’ve been spending

Ryan Guhne of Fermi looks to pass the puck while being pursued by South Windsor’s Nate Waldeisen. Photo by Steve Palmer, The Sports Department, www. stevepalmerphotography. com

more time on offense and cut the shots on [our] goal down.” Fermi notched its first win of the season Jan. 8 in a 7-1 decision over East Catholic. Senior tri-captain Joey Rush scored a shorthanded 3-on-5 goal in the game, and Genovese said he and fellow captains Ryan Guhne and Shaun Kellam have been the team’s most consistent players. “It’s just a matter of things starting to click,” Genovese said of his team’s recent improvement. “We have a lot of new guys in new situations with a bigger role then they had in the past, so it’s just a matter of people getting used to it.” Wrestling Illness and injuries have plagued the Falcons so far, but it’s allowed the team’s younger athletes to gain valuable experience for coming years. “It’s been a very challenging season so

far,” said head coach Jeff Beiler, whose group is 2-6 midway through January. But Beiler said he expects his team to be near full strength by Martin Luther King Day. “We’ve had some excellent individual efforts,” he said. “Our young kids have stayed healthy but our more experienced kids have had illnesses that have set them back. But we have plenty of time left before the second season starts with the state tournament. We have plenty of time to peak and get healthy.” Top individual performers for Fermi so far include veterans Nick Husovsky, Tim Eckel, Delano Davis, John Lambert, Aaron Laramee, Jack Kelly, and Matt Zawrotny. “I can’t discount the first year kids,” Beiler said. “They’ve made some huge strides in their development...they’re going to be a force to be reckoned with when they get more experience.” See “Boys Basketball”, Page 10


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January 18-31, 2011

The Sports Department

Boys Basketball Notches First “W”

Boys Basketball After graduating all five starters from last year, t took the Falcons until their seventh game to pick up their first win, as the team defeated Rocky Hill, 48-47. In order to improve, head coach Vern Mitchell said it’s a matter of teaching his players the habits of basketball. “I hope they are buying into what I am teaching them,” he said. “Part of the game of basketball is building habits,” he said, adding that while a large part of his team has the talent to succeed, the fact that they don’t play much in the offseason leads to them having to pick up those habits all over again. Senior co-captain Pat Bordeau is one player Mitchell cited as having made a statement so far. “Pat has been outstanding on the floor and a leader as well,” Mitchell said. “He could easily be scoring more points but he is also a guy who has bought into the team basketball concept. This is my third year and Pat’s been the best leader we’ve had at Fermi. He competes [no matter what], before games are decided and when they are still in the balance.”

Fermi’s Pat Bordeau takes a mid range jumper during Fermi’s first win of the season, a 48-47 win over Rocky Hill. Photo by Rich Tanguay, The Sports Department, www. video-grams.biz

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Track Team Has State Qualifiers Boys and Girls Indoor Track Lack of numbers hasn’t stopped the Enfield boys and girls track team from placing several competitors in states thus far. The team only has twenty five athletes, including five girls, according to first year head coach Rachel Shuttleworth. “We’re a smaller team,” Shuttleworth said. “It’s disappointing that there’s not a lot of girls, but it’s nice to have smaller team. It makes it a lot closer and the kids are forming closer bonds.” Patience Bearse and Taylor Demur have each qualified for states in the 300 meter dash, while Bearse is just over half a second away from qualifying in the 600 meter. For the boys, thrower Ryan Sadosky has qualified for states, along with Matthew and Andrew Buanno, and Zedicke Davis in the 55 meter dash . The Buanno

brothers teamed with Kyle Casey and Kevin Nelson to qualify for the state tournament in the sprint medley. Andrew Buanno is also a fraction of a second away from qualifying for nationals in the 55 meter dash, something he did last season and Shuttleworth expects him to do again this year. “I definitely think he can be there [again this year], she said. “It’s awesome for me as a coach to have a national athlete. He works really hard; he can definitely get there.”

Hockey The Raiders are off to 2-3-1 start through the middle of January. Tyler Watts recorded a hat trick in the team’s first win a 4-2 decision over Farmington on Dec. 29, while the team’s second win of the season saw Steven Daigler pick up his first varsity win in a 4-2 win over Hall-Southington on Jan. 10.

Enfield’s Brandon Lancaster tries to escape from a hold during a recent match. Photo by Steve Palmer, The Sports Department, www.stevepalmerphotography.com

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January 18-31, 2011

Stafford Stafford Parks and Recreation

Take Pride In Your School, Community When Playing Sports By Damian Frassinelli The Sports Department It is a privilege to be a student-athlete in the interscholastic program of the Stafford Public Schools. We, who are concerned with the educational development of men and women through athletics, feel that a properly controlled, well-organized sports program meets with the students’ needs for self-expression, mental alertness and physical growth. It is our hope to maintain a program that is sound in purpose and will further each student’s educational maturity.

playing field is as important to us as how well you play. Win or lose, we will feel equal pride if we know that you have tried your best, that you have always treated your opponents and their supporters with kindness and courtesy, and that you have played fair-always. Participation in interscholastic athletics is an experience you will never forget. Enjoy it; take pride in your performance and best wishes for a successful season.

A wide variety of sports programs are offered both at the varsity and subvarsity levels. Sixty (60) teams become involved in interscholastic competition. Because of this high degree of visibility, it is important that you represent your school, your team and most importantly yourself with pride, determination and commitment. You must be held accountable to provide leadership, to exhibit responsible behavior and to keep the rules of the team, coach, school and conference. When you win, we will share your pride, enjoy your glory. Keep in mind that how you conduct yourselves on and off the

Stafford

Student Athlete of the Month Nickname: A-Pecs Predator Accomplishments: Student Athlete of the Month, a four year varsity player in basketball, and in middle school I was on the National Honor Society. GPA: 83 Other sports: Baseball How do you prepare for a game: Mainly just listen to music and keep to myself. Thoughts on the season: So far we have started off slow, but we are improving a lot over every game. Just watch out for us the second half of the season. Toughest team to play against: Toughest team we faced this year would probably have to be Sport and Medical Sciences Academy. Favorite sports memory: Winning back to back championships for Little League Baseball. Dynasty. Favorite memory of high school: I would have to say the weekends. Role model or inspirational person in your life: LeBron James, he shows me what a highlight reel really is. Favorite athlete: LeBron “The Chosen One” James Most famous (or near famous) person I ever met: Glad to say Eva Mendes. Person I’d most like to meet: Michael Jordan

Everett Palozej Basketball Favorite way to relax: Music and sleep Favorite class: Gym with Mo Favorite snack food: Red Starbursts, B.B.Q Frito Twists Favorite artist: Drake and Eminem Favorite restaurant: Carrabba’s and Olive Garden Red Sox or Yankees: Red Sox of course Favorite movie: The Town and He Got Game Favorite TV show: It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia and The League Plans after high school: To attend a four year college and make something of myself.

Beginning in 2011, Awards & More in Enfield will provide commemorative plaques for The Sports Department Student Athletes of The Month. Awards & More is located at 492 Enfield Street, Enfield.

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Stafford

January 18-31, 2011

Girls Basketball Team Hanging In There Despite Injuries

By Nate Owen The Sports Department

Stafford’s Jordan Hosey looks to go baseline against a Somers defender during their 43-36 loss to the Spartans on January 6.

An inexperienced Stafford girls basketball team has been forced to overcome injuries in the early going, but has had a group of younger players step up to accompany a talented pair of seniors. The Bulldogs are 3-5 over their first eight games and lost promising sophomore guard Kelsey Heavener for the year with an injury. “I’m excited about this team,” head coach Erin Clark said. “We’re young but we’re a little quicker and more athletic then in the past.” Senior co-captains Brianna Heald and Megan Zelz have led the way for Stafford in the early going. Heald is an excellent shot blocker and leads the team in virtually every statistic, in addition to offering versatility at both the guard and forward

Boys Basketball spots. Zelz provides leadership and The Bulldogs got off to an 0-4 rebounding from her start, including losses to Sport forward spot. and Medical Sciences AcadJunior point guard emy and Enfield, but picked up Dani Clark has its first win of the season with returned from an a 60-56 win over NCCC rival injury that forced her Suffield on Jan. 11. to miss most of last The Bulldogs upcoming year to be a vocal schedule could work in its favor leader for Stafford and the team could build on on the court. Lauren that first win as the team plays Shaw offers a burst six of its next seven games of speed from his at home. During that stretch small forward posiof games, Stafford will get a tion, while Brenna Kevin McNiff shoots a fall away chance to avenge an early Roy has played well jumper over the Enfield’s John Cerrato. Photo by Rich Tanguay, season loss to Windsor Locks, at shooting guard. The Sports Department, www.video- who won 62-49 on Dec. 17. Clark said she is grams.biz The teams will meet again on looking for StafJanuary 20. ford to improve their patience and execution on offense, along with ball handling and shooting. But she is encouraged with her team’s attitude. “The unselfishness has been exceptional,” Clark said. “I feel like all the players on our team look to pass and help out their teammates before looking for their own shot.”

Brenna Roy looks to make a pass while being trapped by a Somers defender.

Stafford’s Zach Rollins comes down with the rebound during their 54-46 loss to Enfield. Photo by Rich Tanguay, The Sports Department, www.video-grams.biz


January 18-31, 2011

By Kate Powers The Sports Department

13

Somers

Somers Wrestling Hasn’t Missed A Beat

The 2011 Winter season has been a successful one thus far for Somers wrestling. With no seniors and a young, rather inexperienced squad, the boys have been proving themselves as strong competitors in the league. After losing talented seniors from last year’s roster, the squad elected junior Ken Vollaro, sophomore Kyle Foster, and sophomore Nick Zachary to lead as the team’s captains. Though young, the captains have demonstrated their skill, as all three of them are currently undefeated, holding records of 14-0, 13-0, and 9-0, respectively. The team consists of five juniors, eleven sophomores, and two freshmen. According to coach Scott Zachary, the older boys are demonstrating their abilities and wrestling well and the younger boys are “catching on quickly.” Standouts include sophomore Andrew Andrade with a record of 11-3, junior Ryan Mailhot with a record of 9-3, and sophomore Eric Trombley

who, with a record of 7-4, has made impressive progress throughout the season. The squad aims to surpass its last year’s record of thirteen wins in dual meets, a goal Zachary claims “is one of confidence.” Though last season’s Class S State Championship is undoubtedly a difficult task to follow, coach Zachary is confident in his boys and affirms that they are “always looking forward,” and that the 2011 squad is a “team of possibilities.” Girls Basketball The Somers High girls’ basketball team is fighting their way through a competitive league this season. The team is 2-5 through seven games after having already faced some of the toughest teams in the NCCC this season, including Avon, Coventry, and Suffield. Led by seniors Ashley Kinney and Kayla Stetson, the squad is working hard towards their goal of qualifying for the state tournament. Both captains, as well as junior Samantha Urbon, have proven instrumental in the team’s

focus on pressure defense and rebounding” is allowing the girls to continually improve and become confident, which will be needed as they continue to work towards the Class S State Tournament.

Boys Basketball Led by head coach John Hostetler, the Somers boys’ basketball team currently holds a record of 4-1. The team is young, as seniors Evan Woicik and Josh Fredette are the only two players returning from last year with meaningful varsity experience. Both boys lead the team in scoring; Woicik with more than twenty-two points per game and Allison Dubanoski tries to box out a Suffield defender while Fredette with ten points per game. going for a rebound. Photo by Alan Bastarache, www. Following them, juniors Connor bastarachephotos.com O’Grady and Josh Patsun contribute to the offense with six points per improved defense from last year. Kinney leads game and fifteen points per game, while the team in scoring with 17.9 points per game, sophomore Brendan Coverdill adds eight points while Kayla Stetson follows with 6.4 points per game. Additionally, senior Matt Benoit and per game. Both Samantha Urbon and Kelsey freshman Mike Casciano are the top reserves Charette are also contributing to the squad’s off the bench. Coach Hostetler anticipates both offense with 4.3 and 4.1 points per game, hard work and success for his team throughout respectively. Though the team has certainly had the remainder of the season. a challenging start to their season, head coach Alan Walker believes that the team’s “continued

Kayla Stetson of Somers tries to get around the Stafford defender.

Brendan Coverdil has a rebound snatched right out of his hands by a Bolton player. Joshua Patsun (25) looks on. Photo by Alan Bastarache, www.bastarachephotos.com


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January 18-31, 2011

The Sports Department

Our Kids, Their Sports

Talking With A Coach: Taking The Stress Out

Brooke de Lench Syndicated Columnist Copyright: © 2011 Brooke de Lench/MomsTeam.com

If the world were a perfect place, talking to your child’s coach would be as natural and stress free as talking to your child’s teacher. Parents should feel free to let the coach know anything we feel will affect our younger child’s participation, such as stress in the child’s home life or school, the fact that he has chronic asthma, that he is grieving over the death of a family pet or has to miss a game to attend a family wedding. With our older children there are also times a parent needs to step in. We also should be able to expect that the coach will share any concerns with us about our child at any time. Unfortunately, many coaches may not know the benefits of open and often communication with parents. As I travel the nation talking with groups of parents, it strikes me that the teams with the least amount of issues are the ones where a coach has an optional weekly parents meeting. The more a coach is able to be pro-active in his/her communication the more successful the sport season will be for everyone. With clear and open communication many assumptions that may be false assumptions are eliminated at every level, including high school. Unfortunately, as I know all too well from my conversations with parents and

coaches over the years, there is not much that worries and confuses parents more than how to talk with a coach-especially if we feel our child is being mistreated. Since it simply isn’t possible to shield our children completely from bad coaches, when we feel that we have something to say, no matter how unpopular, we should speak up. If your intuition is to speak, speak. There is no dishonor in voicing an opinion; there is no dishonor in trying to protect your child. Here’s advice on how to take the stress out of the experience. • Regardless of the issue you may have with your child’s coach, talk to your child first to find out what your child is feeling and thinking before you talk to the coach. Your child’s feelings may be very different than yours and they deserve your respect. • Encourage your child to talk to the coach himself.  For instance, if your child is not getting as much playing time as he or she thinks he or she deserves, the child should ask, “Coach, what do I need to work on so that I can earn more playing time?” • Hold up speaking until you see a pattern and after you have gathered all the facts with an open mind. Check with the assistant coaches and other parents. Be patient. Give the coach the chance to get to know your child before you intervene. Even if your child’s feelings mirror your own, don’t conclude that you have to talk to the coach. Consider the effect your talking to the coach may have on your child’s

relationships with his teammates and the coach. Sometimes, it may be better to keep quiet until you have given the matter more thought and, perhaps, talked to other parents to see if they have concerns similar to yours. If so, you may be better off going to the coach as a group. If your child can’t resolve the problem with the coach on her own, it is time for you to become your child’s advocate and meet with the coach. Your child should be present, even if you end up doing most, if not all, the talking because it will help he or she learn how to speak for themself in the future with other coaches and authority figures. • Choose the right time and place: If you have criticisms, or want to voice a negative comment to your child’s coach, the best time to talk to the coach is after the game and alone, not in front of the players and other parents. Right before, during, or immediately after games or practices are not great times to have a heart-to-heart with the coach. If a faceto-face meeting is warranted, set a time and place which is free of distractions where you can talk and maintain good eye contact. • Check your body language: Are your arms tightly folded across your chest or are your hands loose and comfortable? Are you making direct eye contact and are your eyes open without the “evil eye” appearance that you may really want to be expressing? • Avoid words that block open communication. What you say can make a big difference in how you are perceived. Avoid words like “but”, “try,” “should,” “have to ...,” “always,” “never,” and “obviously.” • Be assertive, not aggressive. Be firm but polite. You want the coach to hear you, believe you, and help resolve an important problem, not feel like he is being attacked. Yet, common communication techniques almost guarantee the opposite result. Too often, we lead with personal attacks, exaggerations, and pre-judgments. Opening salvos such as “You told Allison that she would be the starting goalie” or “Josh never would have played on this team if

you’d told us how expensive it was going to be” beg for debate and rebuttal, rather than inviting problem solving and empathy. Instead, send a powerful message that can get through the coach’s defenses because it focuses on the problem, not the person. • Practice active listening. After the coach has stated he or she’s thoughts you may want to paraphrase what the coach has just said, such as saying, “What I hear you saying is that .....” Saying to a coach, “What I understand you to be saying is that some of the girls will play the entire game while most will only play half the game or less,” may make him see how unfair he is being. Try to see things from the coach’s point of view; it is likely to vastly improve the quality of the discussion. • Look for common ground. Usually, we think we have the solution all figured out, before we know enough about the problem. Making a single, non-negotiable demand prevents discussion of other creative options and makes it harder to back down in favor of a better idea. A more constructive approach is to accept that there are many ways to solve a problem. Then, generate as many options as possible that combine the coach’s interests and your own. Some people are likely to be indirect when it comes to admitting fault or weakness, so pushing for an admission of fault, which forces a coach into the uncomfortable “one down” position may not be the best approach

One Streak Ends, Another Begins

in the 1st period, but overwhelmed West Haven with 5 goals in the 2nd period, then played solid defense in the 3rd to win the game. The team won their semifinal game against the Southern Stars, 7-3. The team will represent Connecticut in the 16U Tier 2 Nationals in Reston Virginia (March 30th - April 3rd, 2011)

Brooke de Lench is a youth sports expert. She is the author of HOME TEAM ADVANTAGE: The Critical Role of Mothers in Youth Sports (Harper Collins) and the founder and Editor-in-Chief of MomsTeam. com-the trusted source for youth sports parents. Copyright: © 2011 Brooke de Lench/MomsTeam.com To Advertise in

The Sports Department Call

860-872-0TSD (0873)

TSD Local Digest

The 9 & 10 year old South Windsor Squirt As tallied 22 wins without a loss before losing their last game in December. The Squirt As who are back to back State Champs as Mites, look forward to the second half of the season as they have already started their next streak by beating the Springfield Pics 4-3. …. The South Windsor Pee Wee Bs scored five goals in a five minute span in the third period as they defeated Simsbury 6-1 to start 2011. Andrew White scored two goals for South Windsor... The South Windsor Midget Minor Tier 2 Team defeated West Haven 7-3 to win their 2nd. consecutive state championship. The team fell behind 2-0

Pitkat To Drive New Car

Stafford’s Woody Pitkat will drive a car owned by indoor TQ-Midget expert Lou Cicconi, Jr. in the upcoming Coffee Cup Race at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center in Providence, RI, on Feb. 5th. Pitkat will join Ted Christopher as Stafford SK Modified regulars who will be in the field.

To submit an item for the TSD Local Digest please email us at: storyideas@thesportsdept.com or call 860-872-0TSD (0873).


January 18-31, 2011

15

Outdoors

Enjoying The Outdoors: Tis The Season For Ice Fishing By Keith Colli The Sports Department Best wishes for a Happy New Year to all. I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season. That snowstorm brought winter in with a great big bang. As bad as it was, there were about 25 diehard ice fisherman and women out on the lake during the height of the blowing snow and wind, but those who endured were well rewarded. While 13 inches of snow was blowing 35 miles per hour, the salmon bite was on. At the store we took pictures of 12 different salmon that weighed between 8 and 13 pounds. The largest fish was a 12.5 lb beautiful silvery female Atlantic salmon that was caught by a woman from Maine who was down for the holidays with her family in Ellington. She fought the fish for over 35 minutes before sliding it through an eight inch hole on to the ice to the cheers of 15 very jealous guys. The salmon fishing has been

exceptional. The ice on most of the lake as of Jan. 4 was about 7 inches with 4-5 inches of strong black ice under the white ice. Along Rt 140 a homeowner has a bubbler to keep the ice from his lake wall, and the wind whipped water has kept the area in front of the beach open. Caution is recommended when fishing near the beach. At the store we keep an update on ice conditions at most of the local waters.

Salmon fishermen have been having the best luck in 8-10 feet of water leaving their shiners 1-2 feet below the ice. Jigging for trout with a small jig head lure tipped with either a waxworm or mousie has been very productive. Many of the 4-5 pound brown trout that were part of the 200 broodstock breeder browns (say that fast) that were stocked in the lake in October due to the low water levels in all the local rivers has been a bonanza for several Crystal Lake fishermen. The largest brown that I took pictures of was 6.25 pounds caught on a 24’ jigging rod by a 13 year old boy fishing

with his 85 year old grandfather. Fishing when the first ice forms is traditionally the best of the year and this season has been no exception. Mashapaug , Bigelow Hollow, Staffordville Lake and Coventry Lake have all been very productive. At Coventry, two anglers caught 5 walleyes over 20 inches in one morning’s outing. Those fishing after dark has have had equally good result at Mashaphaug (Union). Multiple folks stopping by the store for bait have stories of 30-40 fish catches on a regular basis jigging the new hot Grizz Bait lures and the Crushed Ice colored Swedish pimples. Tip-up fisherman using small shiners just under the ice (18”-24”) in 8-10 feet of water have been taking plenty of perch home for a great fish fry. Bass fishing in Lower Bolton , Middle Bolton , Staffordville and Halls Pond has been better than average. In Lower Bolton it appears the state stocking of channel cats has taken hold with fish up to three pounds being reported. On December 5th Crystal Lake Outfitters caught and released a 10 pound Salmon in the lake. We placed a special tag on the fish and there is a cash prize for the person who catches this fish through the ice and brings the tag into the store. Details are available at the store. The upcoming ice derby schedules are available at the store or on the DEP inland

fisheries website. Two local derbies are put on by the Stafford Fish and Game and Rockville F&G . Rockville Elks/Rockville Fish and Game Derby is February 12, from 7 a.m. until 2 pm. First place wins $500. Entry fee is $20 and registration is available at Crystal Lake Outfitters (860875-3773). On site registration will start at 5:30 a.m. at the clubhouse on Crystal St. Ellington. Bring the whole family to visit , skate, fish , eat , cross country ski or what ever, its a perfect great mid winter festival. During the derby we are having a “best and most interesting “ ice fishing sled and shanty contest. Most of the local towns are offering many outdoor winter activities that can be found by visiting the parks and recreation department websites or calling the town halls. Cross country skiing, ice skating and organized winter hikes are some of the family oriented events. Take advantage of the vast state park and state forest systems located within the boundaries of Tolland County and North Central Connecticut to do some outdoor exploring. Winter has some of the best of natures viewing opportunities and a day out in the fields and woods is fun for all. Keith Colli an experienced outdoor writer, fisherman and hunting guide is the owner of Crystal Lake Outfitters store at the south end of the lake,292 Sandy Beach Rd. Ellingon.


16

The Sports Department

January 18-31, 2011

The Sports Department, Enfield, Jan. 18-31, 2011  

Local sports for Enfield, Stafford, East Windsor and Somers, Connecticut