Two teams from both Bellows Falls and Windsor stand tall and proud this morning awaiting semi-final athletic contests in Vermont Tournament play. The Bellows Falls Field Hockey team hosts South Burlington Wednesday afternoon at 3:30, while their football counterparts move on to Brattleboro Friday night for Final Four action in the Southern Region of the football play-offs. Windsor’s ladies also earned a number one seed and have a home date with Missisquoi Wednesday afternoon at 3:30, while the gridders travel to Hartford for a Friday night 7 p.m. showdown at Hartford.
Bethany Coursen’s stickers turned back Burlington 4-1 last Friday behind two goals by Maya Waryas and single tallies from Ariana Wunderle and Ashlin Maxfield. The best news the Terriers may have received though is off the field, where the number one seed in Division I was told they would be hosting perennial contender South Burlington Wednesday afternoon at 3:30 p.m. Vermont usually plays all semis on neutral turf fields. In this year’s pandemic scheduling ways, that has changed and not only do the Terriers not have to travel, but, they get to play on their own grass. The Burlington area school plays most of their games on turf.
Coursen told us, “I don’t know the last time the semis were played on anything but turf. I also don’t remember the last time anyone had the benefit of playing on their homefield. I hope it helps.” The coach did go on to tell us that the BF field is so well manicured it was almost like turf, but regardless, this has to be a break for the southern team. THe same break goes the way of Jody Woods’ Yellow Jackets who host a Thunderbird team which turned back Montpelier on Friday to advance. What does Wood think about her homefield advantage?
“Lets just say I’m on cloud nine. What an advantage to be home and not to have to travel. One more game at home for the seniors,” is how she looked at the decision for schools to not play at neutral sights. The two area schools have a combined 14-0 record and although they appeared on each others original schedule, were not able to clash because of lack of make up dates with officials.
Windsor was the best of all the area schools in Vermont 7 on 7 football this fall. They reached the semifinals with their 48-13 victory over Springfield. They are now 8-1 as they also swept Woodstock last week 49-20 and 49-27. They certainly can put points on the board. In Tuesday’s play-off win, Austin Gauld scored a couple of touchdowns and was joined by Ben Gilbert, Owen Abrahamsen, Logan Worrall, Kaleb Swett and Caden Lockwood. In the pair of wins over the Wasps, Abrahamsen scored on four receptions and was joined by Gilbert, Cook and Place with two and Travis McAllister, Owen Rhoad, Jordan Hart and Gauld all had one.
Coach Greg Balch has watched his team accelerate offensively all fall and is hoping for more of the same at Hartford Friday evening. These two teams opened the season and when the Jacks won everyone labeled it an upset. Both teams have now completed the season with only one loss and are scheduled to meet one more time. This should be quite a showdown. Balch says, “I like the way we have played all year. I knew when we beat them at the beginning of the season, they were a good team. We also knew they would get better because they have plenty of athletes. We have gotten better and this should be a good game.”
Bob Lockerby’s Bellows Falls team played their fifth straight game Tuesday, which went down to the final minutes. In those five games with Brattleboro (2), Springfield (2) and Woodstock, the Purple and White outscored their opponents 123-118. They defeated Woodstock 35-28 Tuesday with an interception at the goal line ending the Wasps chances. The same situation took hold when they secured their 28-24 win over Springfield in their previous contest. They now meet Brattleboro, who they fell to 26-21 and 24-20 two weeks ago and who knows what will happen this time. The only certain thing is the average score of the past five Terrier games has been 25-24 and both teams heading down the stretch with a chance to win. Lockerby said before the Woodstock play-off win, “the kids have played well. They are competing in every game now. We will just have to see what happens now.”
The scorers for the Woodstock game were not available, but, in the 21-14 and 28-24 victories over Springfield Logan Lisai scored two touchdowns and Max Hooke, Caden Haskell, Harrison Gleim, Jake Moore and Jack Burke contributed one. Springfield touchdowns in those contests came by way of Logan Roundy with two and Nathan Leonard, Sam Presch and Chris Jeffers with one. Luke Stocker and Jeffers scored in the Windsor play-off loss for the Cosmos.