The spring season has finally come to a close and with the playoff run over, two athletes stuck out in their respective team’s recent performances.
Both Newington’s Teddy Fravel and Southington’s Abby Lamson helped their squads make deep postseason runs.
The Newington boys volleyball team won its fifth Class M title in the last seven years with a 3-2 win over Joel Barlow on Thursday.
“This year’s postseason was great,” Fravel said. “We lost in the finals for CCC but we shrugged that off and used it as fuel for states. We won the quarters and semis for states pretty easily because we were really hungry for that championship. Personally, I was not nervous until it was like 13-13 in the 5th set and I was rotating out.”
The 6-foot-7 basketball player was recruited by Newington head volleyball coach Curt Burns his freshman year during a game.
“It was halftime during a freshman game and I was dunking,” Fravel said. “Coach Burns talked to my dad, saying my size and jumping ability would be great on the volleyball court. Now ending my second year, I can say I’m glad I decided to play.”
Fravel uses his height to his full advantage when on the court and is always among the team leaders in kills.
“My strengths are my size and impact on the match,” Fravel said. “I feel comfortable in clutch situations never backing down from a challenge or deficit.”
Fravel’s favorite part about volleyball is the friends he has gained.
“I never would have met my closest friends Leonel [Caceres] and Evan [Metzger] if it weren’t for this sport,” Fravel said. “I’m truly grateful for that.”
Fravel’s goal for his senior season is the same as it was this past year.
“Get another ring and be back-to-back-to-back state champs,” Fravel said. “I wanna be remembered as a dominant player who could hit over any blocker in front of him, and for throwing the best pasta parties.”
The Southington softball team made it as far as the semifinal round of the Class LL state tournament. The Blue Knights fell 6-5 in a devastating loss to Amity, which ended up being the Class LL champion.
Despite the loss, Lamson, the team’s junior catcher, played a pivotal role for the Blue Knights, not just in their final game, but really all season long.
“If you pay close attention, she’s one of those kids that in all of those really big games she stepped it up,” Southington head coach Davina Hernandez said. “I think that says a lot about her as a player. She’s the type of kid you want in those situations. She’s been a leader and a lot of girls look up to her because she’s not afraid to be loud and to be a voice out there.”
During her tournament run, Lamson had three hits, three RBI and one double with one run scored. Over the course of the season, she had 30 hits, 20 runs, 32 RBI and a batting average of .476. The catcher also recorded six stolen bases on the year.
“I just love the feeling when the ball comes off the bat and you just know you hit it as hard as you could,” Lamson said. “That is my favorite part about softball.”
Although she is just a junior, Lamson has already committed to attend University of Massachusetts-Amherst, in the fall of 2020. There, she will continue her softball career as a Division I, Atlantic-10 athlete.
But that deoesnt’t
“This team in particular is really close,” Lamson said. “I’ve been on varsity for three years now and this team by far has been the most close knit and all together in it. We’re going to use that for next year and go off of this. Everyone was in the game and everyone was invested in the program.”
Shelby Iava can be reached at (860)801-5096 or firstname.lastname@example.org