Westhill’s Rich Ready To Make The Jump To UConn’s Field Hockey Team

STAMFORD — When Ashley Rich started playing field hockey in the fifth grade, Stamford did not have a youth program for elementary school students. Oddly enough, her career blossomed across town lines in Darien.

Once she reached middle school, she joined Stamford’s program and also found a travel team that she would end up sticking with all the way through high school called Fairfield County United.

At this point, only a seventh grader, she knew that she would want to play in college.


Staples’ Ward Gives Verbal Commitment To Play Football At Harvard

The first of what could be several big summer football signings of FCIAC players started last week in Westport, with Staples senior lineman Jackson Ward, who gave a verbal commitment on Saturday to play at Harvard.

The news was first reported on Twitter Monday night by the account of WWPT, Staples’ student-run radio station.

Ward, a 6-3, 285-pound center and defensive tackle for the Wreckers, said he will play on the interior offensive line for Harvard.


Commentary: For Summer Baseball, Stamford Is Now An American Legion City

STAMFORD — When recent Stamford High School graduate Billy DeVito was determining which baseball program to play with this summer, he weighed his two most viable options carefully.

“I actually thought I was going to play Babe Ruth at first and my mindset was going to Babe Ruth because I’ve always played it since I was 13,” DeVito said. “Then I figured out this team was going to be so good and the staff so good. That’s when I made my decision.”

“This team” is the Senior American Legion team, part of what has now become the go-to program in the city if you are of high school age and planning on or hoping to play college baseball. It is part of a seismic shift that has taken course in Stamford, and one that may undergo more changes in the future.


Easton’s Thomas Winner Of Stamford KIC IT Triathlon

STAMFORD — Even in the wet weather on a grey-looking day, athletes flooded the streets of Stamford on Sunday to participate in the Olympic Triathlon portion of the eighth annual Navigators Stamford KIC IT Triathlon Race Weekend.

The men’s winner was Chris Thomas, 43, from Easton, who added another KIC Triathlon title to his impressive resume. He finished with a time of 1:41:54.85. Elizabeth Pratt, 37, from Bronxville, N.Y., finished first for the women with a time of 1:56:36.99. Coming in second for the men was Kyle Halloran, 28, from Litchfield and in third was Alex Bradley, 37, of Bedford, N.Y. For the women, second and third were Sarah Borell, 43, from Granite Springs, N.Y., and Ceren Bingol, 36, from New York City, respectively.


One Big Inning Helps Stamford Legion To Key Series Sweep

STAMFORD — Just when it looked like game three of the Stamford Legion versus Darien/New Canaan series was going down to the wire, Stamford came up with a huge sixth inning at Cubeta Stadium on Thursday night to win, 6-1, and move to 10-1 on its season.

After a quiet start from Darien/New Canaan, Stamford got on the board first in the bottom of the first inning after catcher Cris Ruiz singled to centerfield and bring Kevin Stone home.

“It was situational hitting, and I wanted to get the run in to put us on top,” Ruiz said. “I just went up to the plate thinking, alright let’s just try to drive it up the middle or the other way.”


Three Months Later, Erin Cunningham’s Lifetime Memory Still Feels Sweet

As we sportswriters transition from the end of the high school season, there is always the quest for the new idea, something we have not yet attempted. So while idly sitting on my couch over the weekend, I thought crossed my mind: pick out the best performance from over the last ninth months that first comes to mind and reconnect with the athlete to see if/how life has changed.

And the winner — without searching old clips I still cannot recall a better one — is Erin Cunningham’s spectacular show on March 21 to help lead the Wilton girls basketball team to its first state title, a 73-45 rout of South Windsor in the Class LL final.

There were multiple storylines at play leading up to the game, but in the end the Warriors, despite varied contributions, fed off the fireworks of Cunningham, their best player, who in her final game, on the biggest stage, finished with 33 points and 19 rebounds.


Loaded Stamford Legion Baseball Team Off To Hot Start

STAMFORD — Stamford American Legion Post 3 is back in action and has all of the tools it will need, some old and some new, to begin another chase toward a state championship this summer.

“There’s a great chemistry with this team,” coach Kevin Murray said. “They all can play, everybody on this roster can play and contribute. We’re blessed with pitching. We’re going to ride our pitching pretty much all summer.”

Murray has a roster loaded with talent and arguably the deepest pitching staff in the zone, led by Division-1 bound pitchers Kevin Stone and Randy Polonia. Harvard-bound Stone is a threat on the mound, at the plate and in centerfield, and Polonia, who also plays shortstop and will take his talents to UConn, returns after capping off a brilliant high school career at Trinity Catholic as two-time FCIAC Player of the Year.

Boys Cross Country

For Wilton’s Spencer Brown, A Fast Course From Turkey Trot To National Spotlight

What didn’t Spencer Brown do this past weekend?

After waking up in Seattle on the eve of the Brooks PR Invitational, he received a text from his coach, Jim Gerweck, alerting him of his most recent title: 2014-15 Gatorade Track and Field Boys Athlete of the Year. He competed with some of the top runners in the country in the Invitational on Saturday in the 800-meter run and finished in eighth. Not to mention, he graduated high school.

All of this happened just weeks after he shattered the 800-meter record in the Class L state championship meet, running it in 1:50:88, which culminated his senior season and running career at Wilton High School.


Commentary: For Another Spring, Darien Has Earned The Title ‘Sports Town, USA’

For well over two decades now, once winter has morphed into spring, Darien has been known as Lacrosse Town, U.S.A., or some similar derivation. Children are given toy sticks not long after losing baby teeth, the youth programs are a model for success and both the boys and girls high school teams from this small tony town are no longer just state, but now regional and national powers as well.

But as Chris Manfredonia, the high school’s athletic director, recently noted, Lacrosse Town is too limited in scope.

“We have a variety of strong programs from the youth to high school levels,” Manfredonia said. “It’s Sports Town, U.S.A.

Boys Lacrosse

Video: Class S Boys Lacrosse Final Highlights: St. Joseph 14, Weston 5

Preston Ouellette scored three of his four goals in the first half as St. Joseph (14-7) built a 6-1 lead and rolled to an easy 14-5 win over Weston for the Class S title, helping to give the FCIAC a sweep of all three championships.

Mike Sudora also scored four goals for the Cadets, who won their fourth title, all in the last six years.

Peter Bashar added two goals for St. Joseph, while goaltender Mike Braddick stopped nine shots.