On Tuesday, February 21, the Harwood girls’ basketball team did something they’ve been waiting to do all season — play at home. Harwood’s new gym floor had just been replaced after being flooded in September. The girls stepped onto the court in the packed gym for their first playdown game against Springfield, which the Highlanders won, 58-24.
“The girls were psyched to have home fans and were excited to play,” coach Tommy Young said. He said the girls came out strong and were up 16-8 after the first quarter, and 32-13 at the half. Harwood won the third quarter, 18-3. “The girls executed the game plan really well,” he said. Eloise Lilley led the Highlanders with 25 points, following by Quinn Nelson with 18 points and 20 rebounds. In all, eight players scored and the JV players were able to play at the end. “It was a great team effort,” Young said. He added, “Thank you to the custodial staff and staff in general for getting the gym ready. It was a lot of work.” Harwood faces Lake Region at home on Saturday, February 25, at 2 p.m. If they win that game, they’ll progress to the semifinals at Barre Auditorium.
On Saturday, February 18, Harwood Union High School’s boys’ hockey team tied Missisquoi Valley Union 3-3 during Harwood’s senior night. The game honored the team’s five seniors, Adin Combs, Aidan Vasseur, Cole Dezan, Owen Duffy and Garrett Nelson.
“We played our best game of season skating to a 3-3 tie with Missisquoi at the Ice Center in Waterbury,” said coach Matt Migonis. “We led 1-0 after one period and 3-1 after two, but they made a furious comeback in the middle of the third period to tie it. Then the game went back and forth the rest of the way with both teams having some great chances to end it. Both goalies stood on their heads making every save the remainder of the third period and through overtime.
“Back-up goalie Owen Cheney got the start and made 31 saves in the contest despite dealing with a shoulder injury. We outshot Missisquoi 51-34 which was by far our highest shot total on the year.
Freshman Eli Herrington once again led the way with a goal and an assist. Senior Cole Dezan scored a goal on senior night, and freshman Milo Lavit also notched a goal. Freshman Owen Farr added an assist and so did senior Aidan Vasseur.
"I'm incredibly proud of this team! They played their hearts out the entire game and while we didn't win, we still found a way to make this night special for the seniors. They led the way all game long. Their passion was incredible."
There are two games left in the regular season, Monday night, February 27, at 7 p.m. in Middlebury and Wednesday, March 1 at 7:30 p.m. vs Milton at Highgate.
Harwood’s JV and junior high (JH) wrestling teams competed at JV/JH States this past weekend at Spaulding. For the JH team, which is comprised of wrestlers from both Harwood Union Middle School and Crossett Brook Middle School, Dante Taft, Ethan Lacroix and Kane Rounds competed. On the JV side, wrestlers were Daniel Hayes, Eric Whitten, Sergiu Trinca, Marshall Longbothum, Nicky Service, Colby Kathan, Caleb Durand, Adler Nedich, and Alex Lord.
“The Harwood wrestlers competed in some tough matches,” coach Casey Moulton said.
For JH, Ethan Lacoix placed fourth at 143 pounds. For the JV, Daniel Hayes placed fifth at 106 pounds. Eric Whitten placed third at 113 pounds. Sergiu Trinca placed fourth at 120 pounds. Nicky Service placed fifth at 132 pounds. Colby Kathan placed sixth at 152 pounds. Caleb Durand placed third at 160 pounds. Adler Nedich placed first at 170 pounds. Alex Lord placed third at 182 pounds.
“As a team Harwood finished in sixth place overall with 113 points. Each wrestler contributed to this great finish. We are a young team and very proud of this season and the growth and improvement we have seen in each wrestler. Very excited for the future with this team,” Moulton said.
Varsity States will be at Vergennes Friday, February 24, and Saturday, February 25. Harwood will be bringing Quinn Smith (145), Colby Kathan (152), Caleb Durand (160) and Alex Lord (182) to compete at Varsity States.