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Fall Sports Highlights 10.14.19

Cross Country - First Boys'
Oct. 12: Cross Country - First Boys’ 41 vs. Berkshire School 20
Oct. 12: Cross Country - First Boys’ 40 vs. Suffield Academy 21
On a picture perfect day in Sheffield, Massachusetts, the Westminster Martlets took on the Berkshire Bears, running in front of a home crowd (on their parents weekend) and the Suffield Tigers. This course has a three-loop configuration, with soft grass footing and rolling hills which slow down the pace considerably. Captain Daniel Pinckney '20 again demonstrated what disciplined running looks like, moving behind the leaders through the first mile and looking strong as he finished third overall in under 19 minutes. The next Martlet was over 90 seconds back from Pinckney, which is why Westminster did not win the meet, but there were many personal victories. Fourth formers Jamai Miller and Matt Westlake both ran season best times, and the average time for the Second team was almost the same as the preceding week despite Berkshire being a significantly slower course. Again, this young team is improving and has a bright future ahead as individuals learn how to race and get stronger over the coming years.
 
Cross Country - First Girls'
Oct. 12: Cross Country - First Girls’ 15 vs. Kent School 43
The cross country team traveled to Kent School for its second dual meet of the season. The Kent course, which wound through the forest and over several hills, was not a particularly fast one, but it allowed for a quintessential cross country experience for the Martlets. The Westminster squad swept the field, securing the top five spots in the race. Annabelle Smith ’21 held a strong lead from the start, finishing in a time of 21:09. Laura Mittelman ’20 finished in 22:31 and Miranda Douglass ’21 was close behind in 23:04. Bella Tawney ’22 and Bethany Winters ’20 finished practically side-by-side (in 24:22 and 24:26, respectively) after pacing each other through the final mile of the course. Janessa Yan ’22 held off several Kent runners to finish sixth for Westminster and eighth overall in a time of 27:03. Hope Zimmerman ’21 had her strongest finish of the season, running the course in a time of 30:34 — a lifetime best for Zimmerman. The Westminster squad was rounded out by Alice Liu ’23 and Simone Routledge ’23.
 
Field Hockey - First Girls'
Oct. 12: Field Hockey - First Girls’ 7 vs. Williston Northampton School 0
Westminster traveled to Williston on a beautiful fall day. The Martlets started very well, scoring five goals in the first half from a mix of open play and corners. Williston never gave up, pushing hard in the second half with Karen Newton '20 making two very nice saves to keep a clean sheet. Westminster scored twice in the second half and ended the game with a very strong result. Goal scorers first half: Mckenzie Bloom '23 (2); Claire Taylor '21 (2); Sam DeLeo '21 (1). Assists first half: DeLeo (2); Megan Rittenhouse '20 (1). Goal scorers second half: Bloom (1); Gemma Green '21 (1). Assists second half: Casey Winslow '21 (1); DeLeo (1).
 
Field Hockey - Third Girls'
Oct. 9: Field Hockey - Third Girls’ 0 vs. Deerfield Academy 2
Despite the cold and the threat of rain, Third Girls’ Field Hockey arrived at Deerfield with high energy. The game played showed improvement on strategy and communication, but despite the effort, Westminster left with a 0-2 loss. 
 
Oct. 12: Field Hockey - Third Girls’ 0 vs. Hotchkiss School 2
Third Girls’ Field Hockey fought valiantly against a competitive Hotchkiss team. The start of the game showed each teams’ well-matched skills but with an injury sidelining a Westminster forward and no substitute players, the girls came away with another 0-2 loss. 
 
Soccer - First Boys'
Oct. 9: Soccer - First Boys’ 1 vs. Deerfield Academy 1
Westminster hit the road to play Deerfield on an overcast, cool afternoon. The visitors would come out strong and played with a quick, fast pace that would keep Deerfield on its heels to start. As the game settled in, both teams would have chances in the first half. Boniface Fatohou '23 would knock a ball in for Westminster on a hard cross to take the 1-0 lead into halftime. The second half got off to a slow start for Westminster and the team needed to count on the steady goaltending from Lucas Wahlberg '21 who would finish the game with a solid eight-save game. Deerfield would score on a crossing ball which made the last 20 minutes of the game exciting. Westminster would push hard but was denied multiple times by the outstanding Deerfield goalie in the final five minutes. A solid tie on the road and many standout performances from John Picard '22, Ryan Messina '20, Percy Sibanda '20 and Xander Cardia '21.
 
Oct. 12: Soccer - First Boys’ 6 vs. Salisbury School 1
The Martlets would host the Knights on a perfect afternoon for soccer. Westminster would jump out to a 2-0 lead by goals from John Picard '22 and Boniface Fatohou '23 before the Knights would get on the board in the last minute of the first half. Westminster responded well after giving up a late goal in the first half by a Godwin Asore '20 who would get his first goal of the year early in the second half. The Martlets would have a great team effort adding three goals in a row by Jordy Nelson '21, Dylan Holley '20 and Greyson Pane '22. Both Westminster goalies would see action, Lucas Wahlberg '21 had four saves and Parker Sinclair ’23 had three saves.
 
Soccer - First Girls'
Oct. 12: Soccer - First Girls’ 2 vs. Williston Northampton School 0
The Martlets hosted Williston Northampton Oct. 12 on a beautiful fall day on the Hill. Westminster had a slower start than the team hoped for, playing a little more frantically than usually. There were some chances as the team attempted to find gaps in the Williston defensive third, but it came up short. When the teams broke for half at 0-0, the Martlets pulled it together and stuck to a plan to execute a great second half that led to the win. Five minutes into the second half, all-around threat Jillian Gregorski ‘23 found Eliza Roach ‘21 after winning the end line and crossing it for the finish. Another five minutes passed and Gregorski found Roach again, this time in a cluster of players in the six-yard box. Westminster held the 2-0 lead the remaining 30 minutes of the half and shut out the visiting Williston squad.
 
Soccer - Second Boys'
Oct. 9: Soccer - Second Boys’ 1 vs. Deerfield Academy 4
Second Boys' Soccer led for much of the game against Deerfield Academy thanks to an excellent first half finish from Peter Miller '22. The game was evenly poised with Westminster fashioning the better chances until the second half when Deerfield was awarded a penalty, and breached the staunch Westminster defense. Deerfield's goal glut came late in the second half and the score line does not accurately present how close the rest of the match was. Westminster possesses a dangerous midfield and attack, paired with a resilient defense. Deerfield noticeably struggled with the Westminster forward line, and was matched by the efforts of a hard-working midfield. Tunji Osho-Williams '21 exemplified leadership on and off the field. He fought for every ball, burst forward through the lines, and pushed himself and his team at every opportunity. Brian Opdenaker '21 had a quietly brilliant game in defense. Defenders will always be judged by the final score but Opdenaker stopped so many other Deerfield chances. Although he is quiet on the field, he has made great progress in his decision making and technical ability and goes about his job without fuss. Opdenaker is always willing to make another final sprint or block a goal-bound strike. The team is slowly returning to full fitness and is hopeful of the score lines reflecting its hard work and progress.
 
Oct. 12: Soccer - Second Boys’ 3 vs. Salisbury School 0
   
Soccer - Third Boys'
Oct. 9: Soccer - Third Boys’ 2 vs. Avon Old Farms School 3
On a wet afternoon, trailing 1-0 at the half, Westminster stormed back behind two Darion Benchich '20 goals, one on a rebound after a hard shot by Travis Paulsen '20 and the other on a cross by Danny Judge '22. The Martlets would shoot themselves in the foot as they gave away a couple goals that day to Avon, including an unnecessary penalty kick. The boys had fun in the rain, but if they want to get back in the win column, they need to clean up their game as a team: commit fewer penalties, stay in position and communicate better on the field.
 
Oct. 12: Soccer - Third Boys’ 1 vs. Salisbury School 0
With a smaller roster than usual, Westminster ground out a victory on a beautiful afternoon. Will Mazzaro '21 collected a ricochet in the second half and put away the first and only goal of the match, snapping the Martlets' two-game slide. They tallied 13 total shots, possessed the ball nicely, and altogether played clean, hard soccer. They received other strong performances from Teddy Feroleto '22, Luke Holyfield '22, Danny Judge '22 and Will Scott '20.
 
Soccer - Fourth Boys'
Oct. 12: Soccer - Fourth Boys’ 2 vs. Avon Old Farms School 1
On a beautiful day in Simsbury, the Martlets faced a talented group of Winged Beavers. When the final whistle blew, Westminster had a hard-fought 2-1 victory. Matt Greggains ‘23 was outstanding in goal in the first half and Alex Unruh ‘22 was terrific between the pipes in the second stanza. Unruh got things started in the first half with a beautiful pass to Kade Smith ‘22. Smith put it home for a 1-0 lead. Unruh then played a ball through the defense to a speedy Newt Cutler ‘22. Cutler beat the goaltender and the Martlets took a 2-0 lead into the break. In the second half, Charlie Pappas ‘22 and Ben Michaud ‘22 led an outstanding Martlet defense. Marcello Demerski ‘23 controlled the midfield and the Martlets held on for a 2-1 victory.
 
Water Polo - First Boys'
Oct. 9: Water Polo - First Boys’ 12 vs. Eaglebrook School 2
The Martlets earned a convincing win against a good Eaglebrook squad Oct. 9 at home. Last year the Martlets beat Eaglebrook in double overtime, so exactly what this game would look like was uncertain. From the opening whistle, Westminster was the dominant team in the pool, executing on fast breaks and using its size to overwhelm its opponent. The game was not “in hand” until the third quarter, and Westminster continued to put the pressure on through the final whistle. Scoring came from many individuals, and goal tending was excellent. This was a great win, and a good indication of how far the program has come in year two.
 
Oct. 12: Water Polo - First Boys’ 5 vs. Choate Rosemary Hall 14
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