With the winter season in full swing, area athletes are going above and beyond to make sure their teams are either coming out on top or at least giving it all they had to make sure their teams are getting out to the best starts possible.
New Britain’s Gabby Roy and Berlin’s Matt Lavoie are those athletes.
It was a tough game for the Hurricanes girls basketball team Friday night against Wilbur Cross as a sloppy second half led to a 56-28 loss. But it wasn’t all bad. Roy led New Britain, scoring 10 points, including two 3-pointers while shooting 2-for-2 at the foul line.
Roy was forced to sit for the start of her senior season due to pneumonia, but even though she was sick, she was still at every practice, every game cheering the Hurricanes on.
“It was rough, and I was kind of mad because I really wanted to play,” Roy said. “Having to sit the bench for the first couple games was tough but my teammates always supported me and I tried to go to practice to help them with anything they needed.
“Coming back it was tough. I had a minute restriction, but as the games built up I started to feel better.”
Roy made an appearance in the Hurricanes’ 63-52 win against Plainville, but things didn’t go as well as she had hoped for. The following game was Rocky Hill - a 68-35 loss - though Roy decided the best idea for her was to sit that one out. She officially came back full time when New Britain played Hartford Public, which ended up being a 48-31 win.
“She didn’t miss one day of school when she was sick,” Hurricanes head coach Marc Wesoly said. “She was here every day supporting her teammates. She’s a three sport athlete and [the] No. 2 [student] in her class. To have a player like her my first year, it’s a privilege to coach someone like her.”
New Britain is now due to play Thursday at Wethersfield at 6:45 p.m.
The Newington-Berlin boys ice hockey team turned in a dominant performance against Joel Barlow on Saturday, winning on an 11-0 shutout. Lavoie certainly did his part, as he was one of the eight Indians players that found the back of the net.
“It was definitely good to see different people move the puck and be able to score,” Lavoie said. “We were able to work as a team and get the win.”
Newington-Berlin head coach David Harackiewicz said Lavoie played well, scoring two goals and making an assist. It was easy to see why as both of the junior’s goals came in the opening period in which the Indians built up a 4-0 lead.
Lavoie’s first goal came at the 3:34 mark after he was fed the puck by Cade Palladino. His second score came less than three minutes later, with just 46 seconds left in the period to be exact, off passes from Kyle Bucher and Palladino.
The Indians ended up taking 51 shots on goal and even though the puck found the back of the net 11 times, Lavoie said they should have taken advantage of the opportunities they had.
“We had a lot of good chances that we didn’t capitalize on,” Lavoie said.
If Newington-Berlin is able to sort that out, that could be an issue for opponents moving forward. But for now, the Indians sit at 4-0 on the season and will next play Shepaug/Litchfield/Nonnewaug/Thomaston Wednesday at 6:05 p.m.
Shelby Iava can be reached at (860) 801-5096 or firstname.lastname@example.org