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Sports June 2010

Baseball succumbs to Southington in States PETER DAWSON Sports Reporter

As the school year draws to a close, so does the Varsity baseball season. The team lost 6-3 to Southington High School in the first round of the States Tournament. Led by manager DJ Mulvany and senior captains Ryan Curto, Alex Rough, Scott Valenzano, and Brian Moynihan, the team finished the year with a record of 13-10, which includes both the regular season, FCIAC playoffs, and State tournament games. The season contained both big wins and some disappointing losses. As Coach Mulvany said, “There were lots of peaks and valleys.” Valenzano added, “We kind of underachieved in the regular season.” The boys began the season with a 1-3 record in their first four games; however, they got a few back to go to 3-4 on the season. After that, they improved their play and rattled off five wins in a row to take them to 8-4. The team was up and down for the rest of the year, finishing the regular season with a 12-8 record. “We did have some big wins against Staples, Wilton, and Trinity and against Stamford High to win the City Championship,” Coach Mulvany said. The team went up to Cooperstown, NY, home of the Baseball

Hall of Fame, to play a regular season game against St. Joe’s on Aprl 23. The game was suspended with a score of 1-1 and was later resumed at St. Joe’s home field, where Westhill lost 8-7. “Losing to St. Joe’s after the Cooperstown experience was a bit of a disappointment,” Coach Mulvany said. The biggest victory of the season was beating number one seeded Staples High School in the first round of the FCIAC playoffs on May 24. This came just four days after beating Harding in the final regular season game to clinch the eighth and final seed in the singleelimination playoff tournament. The Staples game was started by pitcher and staff ace senior John Porter, who was backed by a home run by Rough and the offense of Curto and senior Morgan Williams as the Vikings went on to beat the Wreckers by a score of 7-4. Valenzano said, “It was a really big game. We lost to them the last two years in the FCIAC Championship and we wanted some revenge. Porter threw a great game; he really fires and comes through in the clutch.” Unfortunately, the Vikings lost to number five seed Fairfield Ludlowe by a score of 6-3 just one day after beating Staples. However, the team still had a shot to end its season on a high note and win the State Champion-

King of the Court In any game there are many components that are needed for the sport to be fluid. If one piece of the puzzle is missing, it will never be complete. Sports need all cylinders running smoothly so there is a sense of order, keeping the game from being disorganized. These aspects can include the rowdy fans cheering for their team as if it is part of their religion, a follower trying to mimic an athletic role model, a referee making a controversial call, a career-ending injury, a game played with pride for ones country, or an unwritten

Column by Jordan Meyer

rule that someone breaks. No matter the case, without these aspects, the game would not be able to be played at its fullest potential. If the game is not played correctly and is missing even the smallest aspect, the game becomes a burden and is no longer fun to be played. There is one aspect during game play that goes unnoticed at times and is sometimes forgotten by the competitors. This aspect has nothing to do with performance, a referee, or an injury; it has to do with how the player plays the

Photo Courtesy of Kerstin Marzullo FOLLOWING THROUGH Senior Tyler Rich rips the ball in Westhill’s victory over Staples High School in the first round of FCIACs on May 24. The team later lost to Fairfield Ludlowe in the second round of the tournament 6-3. Westhill looked to bounce back in the State tournament, but was upset by Southington. ship. In its first game, Westhill was paired against Southington, which won 6-3, eliminating the Vikings from the tournament. The game didn’t begin well for Porter, who pitched a complete game. In the bottom of the first inning, Southington scored four runs on two errors, a few walks, and some timely hits. Westhill scored on an RBI single by Rough, a Valenzano sacrifice fly, and a solo homerun by senior Tyler Rich. Mulvany said, “It was a tough

pairing; Southington is a good team, and they lost the next day to a good Greenwich team 3-2.” The 2011 season looks like it will be a rebuilding year for the team. The Vikings will be losing 13 seniors, four of whom were captains and 11 of whom were returning players. It appears as though the team will be led by the few players who are currently juniors as well as many sophomores who played on JV this year. The team will also have to fill many

pitching gaps, including those left by senior aces Porter and Nate Newhall along with Williams, who started the Ludlowe game. As for a returning Varsity player who can really help the team, Mulvany and the team’s coaches are looking to junior Sam Kosterich for leadership and solid play. Mulvany said, “We have been very pleased with how he progressed and how hard he worked. We have big expectations for him.”

game. The most important aspect of all is no matter the outcome of the game always remember why you played sports as a kid, and that was to have fun. Before every game, you lace up your shoes and some way or another get yourself mentally prepared for the task at hand. During any game, it can get very competitive and your emotions can sometimes take over, but every athlete needs to keep his or her cool, re-

they are playing in their third consecutive NBA Finals. No one on the Lakers likes to lose, because they don’t have fun losing. Through their hard work and determination to be one cohesive unit, they have fostered friendships with their teammates leading to their overall success. Now this does not happen overnight, but over the course of time, by practicing and playing with the same people daily, certain relationships blossom.

team’s mission of winning a third title in three years fell short this year, the girls are even more eager to win a State Championship. After an undefeated regular season and just one loss coming in the FCIAC Championship, these girls have endured quite a run and much success. Their undefeated regular season did not just happen because of more intense practices and workouts leading up to games but also because of the friendships these girls have made. Events such as meeting the Yankees upon being eliminated in the State tournament last year have helped the team bond and added another element of fun to the sport. Remembering childhood values of the game and just having fun each time you step out on the playing field is more of an aspect to the game then any referee making a game-changing call, any injury that can end a career, any sports role model, or any rule that is broken.

Sports need all cylinders running smoothly so there is a sense of order in sports, keeping the game from being disorganized. member those childhood values of the game, and just have fun. For the past decade in the NBA, the franchise that has had the most fun and the most success is probably the Los Angeles Lakers. They have won four championships in the past 10 years and

One specific sports team at Westhill that has had similar success and similar fun over the past few years has been the Varsity softball team. Over the last three seasons, this team has made the FCIAC finals each year and has won two titles. Even though the


PETER DAWSON Sports Reporter June 2010 P hoto C ourtesy of K erstin M arzullo FOLLOWING THROUGH Senior Tyler Rich rips the ball in Westhill’...