Vt. HS Boys D-2, 3 and 4 title previews by the numbers

As part of my prep to cover the Divisions 2, 3 and 4 high school boys state championship game, here’s a look at three match-ups strictly by the numbers.

One interesting note to start you off, in each division there is a team that has never won a state title. Having three teams win their first state title - especially in that venue - on the same day would be a spectacle.

Division 2

No. 7 Enosburg (15-8) vs. No. 1 Woodstock (23-0), 3:45 p.m.

With a win over the undefeated Wasps the Enosburg Hornets would make history in a couple regards.

The Hornets have never won a state title in boys basketball and they would be the lowest seed to ever win a Division 2 title. Back in 1980, Winooski was a No. 6 seed and won the title.

The last time Enosburg competed for a title was in 1992. The other title-game losses were in 1984, 1986, 1987 and 1991.

The Hornets are a young team and after a 1-5 start it’s remarkable they are playing for the title. With this youth, this could be the start of a long run of trips to The Aud.

This is the first title game appearance for Woodstock since 2002. The Wasps have won four state titles and this is their 11th title game appearance. Their last title win was in 1999. They won the 1998, 1965 and 1964 titles, as well.

The teams did not play each other this season and have never met in the playoffs.

Division 3

No. 4 Rivendell (19-4) vs. No. 3 Williamstown (19-4), 7:30 p.m.

Unlike in Division II where the teams are unknown to each other, the Rivendell-Williamstown recent playoff history is reaching epic proportions, but only the Blue Devils are happy about that.

The teams have met on the bouncy Barre Auditorium floor for the last three seasons.

Williamstown is seeking its fourth straight title. Do the math. The Blue Devils have been the hammer in this relationship and the Raptors have been the nail.

Here are those past meetings

2014 - Semifinals - Williamstown 67, Rivendell 41
2013 - Semifinals - Williamstown 60, Rivendell 54
2012 - Finals - Williamstown 66, Rivendell 42
2006 - First round - Williamstown 59, Rivendell 49.

The teams played twice in the regular season
Feb. 6 - Williamstown 64, Rivendell 59
Feb. 18 - Williamstown 77, Rivendell 58

If Rivendell can overcome all of those past defeats and win Saturday’s game, they’re be many reasons to rejoice - including a first-ever boys basketball title for the school.

The only other time the Raptors were in the finals was in 2012.

Williamstown would run it’s title streak to four straight with a win and it would be the seventh in school history. This is the fifth finals appearance in six years for the Blue Devils, who have built an impressive dynasty.

The Blue Devils - one of three teams to make the finals despite opening-game losses - started the season 1-3. They are 18-1 since.

Division 4

No. 4 Proctor (17-6) vs. No. 3 Sharon (20-3), noon

Sharon has the better record, better seed and a rabid fan base, but Proctor has the pedigree.

The Sharon Academy - fans serenaded the players with chants of T-S-A! in the semis - is playing in its’ first state title game.

Proctor is playing in its’ 23rd.

The teams did not play in the regular season.

The met once in the playoffs.

2007 - Semifinals - Proctor 50, Sharon 34

Proctor’s last title was in 2010 - the last of five straight championships.


D-2, D-3 and D-4 girls basketball title game preview by the numbers

The Richford girls team celebrate their semifinal win on Feb. 26, 2015 at Barre Auditorium. (Shawn Corrow,

Every year that I’m asked by the Burlington Free Press to cover all three state championship games I do a little research to see if I can uncover some nuggets that might improve my stories.

Here’s the results of the endeavor - most of it will never see the light of day unless I post it here.

No. 1 Lake Region (21-2) vs. No. 3 Mill River (18-5), 3:45 p.m.

Lake Region started the season 5-0, lost to D-I Burr and Burton and Lyndon Institute in back-to-back games, and since then has reeled off 16 straight wins, including a win over Lyndon in the semifinals.

This is Lake Region’s seventh state title game appearance, it’s sixth since 2007 and it’s first since 2011.

The Rangers are 2-4 in state title games, winning the D-III title over Windsor in 2009 and winning the D-II title way back in 1974 over Oxbow. They are 1-0 in D-II title games.

They had a run of five straight title games from 2007-2011.

Mill River is making it’s fourth state title game appearance, but it’s first since 1986. The Minutemen went to three title games in a row from 1984-1986, but came up empty each time.

They have not competed for a title before or since.

Mill River’s losses were to Burr and Burton, Rutland, Fair Haven and Mount Anthony.

The teams did not play each other this season.

This is the second time the schools have met in the playoffs

Past result
2010 - Lake Region 63, Mill River 23 - Quarterfinals

Division III

No. 1 Thetford (22-1) vs. No. 3. Richford (19-4), 7:30 p.m.

Thetford has won 18 straight games since a three-point loss to Rivendell on Dec. 20, 2014.

The Panthers won their first-ever title last year.

Prior last year’s win, they had been 0-3 in state title games.

Richford is seeking it’s fourth state title, its’ first since 1992. The Rockets also won titles in 1989 and 1990.

Richford suffered two losses to Division II top seed Lake Region and one each to BFA-Fairfax and Stowe.

The schools did not play each other this season.

This is the fifth time the schools have meet in the playoffs.

Past results
2012 - Thetford 42, Richford 19 - First round
2001 - Thetford 56, Richford 45 - First round
1996 - Thetford 57, Richford 35 - Quarterfinals
1993 - Richford 60, Thetford 58 - Semifinals
1992 - Richford 67, Thetford 47 - Semifinals

Random notes - Richford coach Jenessa Swainbank is one of the youngest coaches to lead a team to a state title game at the ripe old age of 22. She’s also a member of a very exclusive club of father-daughter combos that have led teams to title games. I’ve asked other members of Vermont sports media and no one could remember anyone younger or another father-daughter combo, but there’s no way to prove she’s the youngest or they are in exclusive company.

Division IV

No. 1 Mount St. Joseph’s (21-1) vs. No. 3 Proctor (17-5), noon

The Mounties defeated Proctor twice during the regular season, 45-33 and 51-46.

MSJ’s lone loss was to West Rutland.

This is MSJ’s fifth trip to the title game. They lost last year to Proctor, 40-33.

MSJ’s lone title was a Division II title in 2002 over Windsor.

They have lost to Vergennes in the D-II title game in 2006 and to Arlington in the D-III tournament in 2001.

Proctor is in the midst of an amazing run of success.

The Phantoms have won three straight state titles. They also won a D-III title back in 1984 and lost three times in the Division III finals (1985, 1987 and 1989).

Their other losses this year are to Whitcomb, West Rutland and Fair Haven.

This is the third time the schools have met in the playoffs.

Past results
2014 - Proctor 40, MSJ 33 - Finals
2013 - Proctor 45, MSJ 37 - Quarterfinals


VSMA tabs Russell for monthly honor

The Vermont Sports Media Association has chosen former Essex High School golfing standout Evan Russell as its July Athlete of the Month.
    The membership of the VSMA, formerly the Vermont Sportswriters and Sportscasters Association, honored the amateur golfer for his outstanding efforts in July.
    Russell had a pair of impressive performances against the region’s best amateur golfers. Russell, 20, was the first Vermonter to win the New England Amateur title in 23 years, with a three-round tournament score of a five-under 208 at Green Mountain National Golf Course in Killington.  
    Later in the month, Russell finished atop the leaderboard to secure one of the three available qualifying spots for the U.S. Amateur championships. Russell carded rounds of 70 and 67 on the Cape Cod National Golf Course in Brewster, Mass., on which he had not previously played. Russell is beginning his sophomore year at the University of Hartford this fall.
    Russell outpolled recent Champlain Valley Union graduate Shane Haley, a soccer player; Thunder Road driver Derrick O’Donnell of Haverill, N.H.; Vermont Mountaineers baseball player Chandler Brock of Huntsville, Ala.; and youth swimmers Peter Mikheyev of the St. Albans team and Kira Hancock of the Essex team.
    VSMA members are now nominating candidates for the August Athlete of the Month honor. In September, the VSMA will return to honoring male and female high school athletes as well as one Open Division monthly winner.
    VSSA members voted on the name change at the organization’s Aug. 22 annual meeting in Montpelier, at which Josh Kaufmann of the St. Albans Messenger was re-elected as the organization’s president. Also chosen were Andy Kirkaldy of the Addison Independent as vice president, Anna Grearson of the Barre-Montpelier Times Argus as secretary, and Lauren Read of the Burlington Free Press as treasurer.
    Kaufmann said the name change recognizes the fact many sports professionals now work in other media in addition to writing and broadcasting. For information about the VSMA contact Kaufmann at


Richford girls basketball, BFA-St. Albans girls hockey playoff numbers and notes

The Richford girls basketball team and BFA-St. Albans girls hockey teams continue their playoff pushes Saturday.

The ninth-seeded Rockets (10-11), who won their first playoff game since 2006 this week, travel to Hardwick to take on top-seeded Hazen (18-3) at 2 p.m.

Richford lost the lone regular season meeting, in Hardwick, 34-28.

Gabby Coons led the Rockets with 10 points in their 27-25 win over No. 8 Leland & Gray.

This is the third all-time playoff meeting between the schools.

In 1994, Hazen won 49-47 in the quarterfinals and in 1996, Richford won 58-33 in a playdown.

Richford is looking for its first trip to the Final Four since 1995 and its' 12th in school history. Richford last won a state title in 1992. The Rockets have three Division III titles and are 0-2 in Division IV title games.

Hazen is looking for its' first trip to the semifinals since 2002 and its first title since 1976. The Wildcats are 0-3 in Division III state tournament finals and 2-2 in Division II finals, all back in the 70s.

Hazen has an all-time playoff record of 32-30 and Richford is 37-37.

The top-seeded 16-3-2 BFA-St. Albans girls hockey team will host South Burlington-MMU at 7 p.m. at the CPSC rink.

BFA 9-2 in semifinals and 8-1 in title games.

The teams tied 1-1 in their first meeting and BFA won the rematch at home, 5-0.


Enosburg, BFA-St. Albans and BFA-Fairfax girls basketball quarterfinal numbers and notes

A trio of Franklin County girls basketball teams will attempt to reach their respective high school basketball semifinals with quarterfinal wins today (a fourth and a certain Division I girls hockey program of note are also still alive in their playoffs, but I'll post about them late tonight or tomorrow morning).

The only local team playing in the county are the third-seeded BFA-Fairfax girls (19-2) which hosts No. 6 Fair Haven (16-5) tonight at 7 p.m.

The Bullets are having a history-making season.

This season they have won their first Division II playoff game (their first playoff game in any division in nine years) and their 18-2 regular season mark is tied for the school record with a team back in 1981 which won the school's lone state title.

Fairfax is aiming for its first Final Four berth since 2003 and it's first state title game since 2000.

Chace Carpenter led the team with 25 points in their first playoff game, a 53-26 win over No. 14 Vergennes. Meghan Bochanski added 12 points. Kayla Baczewski has also averaged scoring in double figures this season for the defensively sound Bullets.

Fair Haven is seeking its seventh trip to the Final Four and third in four years. The Slaters have not won a state title (0-3 in title games) and their last appearance in one was in 2001.

Fair Haven won its first round playoff game 36-20 over Otter Valley. Bethany Lanfear had 10 points and Lindsey Marcy and Alexis Ellis had six points apiece.

The eighth-seeded BFA-St. Albans girls basketball team (12-9) take on top-seeded and undefeated CVU (21-0) tonight at 7 p.m. in Hinesburg.

The Comets won their opening playoff game 45-26 over Burr and Burton thanks to 10 points from Eva Clark and nine from Lauren Larose.

The Redhawks had a bye in the first round.

CVU won two regular season meetings 48-27 and 50-33.

This is the seventh all-time playoff meeting between the schools.

2012 - CVU 39, BFA 32 - Quarters

2010 - CVU 43, BFA 29 - Playdowns

2008 - CVU 53, BFA 45 - Semis

2007 - BFA 76, CVU 51 - Quarters

1996 - CVU 68, BFA 52 - Semis

1988 - BFA 56, CVU 40 - Playdowns

BFA is seeking its 16th trip to the Final Four and sixth trip to the finals. BFA has won a pair of state titles, the last of which came in 1994. Their last state title game was in 2009.

CVU is seeking its 17th trip to the Final Four and third straight. The Redhawks have lost to Rice in the last two state final games and have lost in the last six state championships in which it has played. Their last title came in 1987. CVU has won three state titles.

Back in Division III, the sixth-seeded Enosburg Hornets (15-6) will play at No. 3 Thetford (16-5) tonight at 7 p.m.

Enosburg has its' sights set on a seventh trip to the Final Four in eight seasons. The Hornets are 42-33 all time in the playoffs and lost in the state title game last year to Oxbow. Enosburg has been to the Final Four 16 times.

Enosburg has won three state titles, the last of which came in 2008.

McKenzie Gleason had 22 points and Chole Longe had 12 in a first-round playoff win for the Hornets over Oxbow.

Five of Enosburg's six losses are to teams in Division II and its one Division III loss was a one-point defeat to top-seeded Hazen.

Enosburg played a slew of close games down the stretch, going 5-2 in games decided by five points or less.

This is the fifth playoff meeting between the schools.

2000 - Thetford 56, Enosburg 46 - Playdowns

1999 - Enosburg 52, Thetford 49 - Quarters

1985 - Enosburg 43, Thetford 42 - Quarters

1980 - Thetford 39, Enosburg 38 - Quarters

Thetford has never won a state title (0-3) in state title games and is looking for its second straight trip to the Final Four.

The Panthers last reached the title game in 2005 and a win would give them their 11 appearance in the Final Four.

Shayann Josler had 21 points and nine assists and Michaela Pomeroy scored 14 points in a first-round 51-30 playoff win over No. 14 Northfield.

SHAWN CORROW, who should really find better ways to spend rare sunny March days than writing on his blog, is the owner of Cold Hollow Photography, a freelance sports journalist and addicted to Storage Wars and Seinfield.