High schools: Amherst hockey rallies past South Hadley; swimmers shine at Fast Chance Meet

Staff Reports

Published: 02-05-2023 7:49 PM

Trailing 1-0 after one period, the Amherst hockey team sprung to life on Saturday.

The Hurricanes struck for two goals in the second period and lit the lamp four times in the third to capture a 6-1 victory over South Hadley in a Fay Division contest at Fitzpatrick Rink in Holyoke.

Skyler Ferro tallied two goals and assisted on another for Amherst, which also received goals from Yuuki Ishida, Liam Flynn, Jack Dyjach and Nate Ziomek.

Tyler Denison scored the game’s opening goal for South Hadley, less than a minute into regulation. The Tigers held a 28-24 edge in shots on goal. Amherst goalie Charles May stopped 27 shots.

East Longmeadow 5, Belchertown 1 – Charlie Fijal netted the Orioles’ goal in a 5-1 independent loss on Saturday night.

Donald Rodgers made 20 saves in the Belchertown net. 


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Several locals qualify for sectionals

With one more opportunity to qualify for next weekend’s Central/West Championship meets, several area swimmers took advantage on Saturday at the annual Fast Chance Meet held at both West Springfield High School and Minnechaug Regional.

Two Amherst swimmers earned sectional invitations in the girls’ 200-yard individual medley, as both Sophie Ziomek (2:32.96) and Aurora Donta-Venman (2:33.55) bested the qualifying mark on Saturday.

Northampton’s Frankie Adams-Sternal earned two invitations, as she got under the mark in the 100 freestyle (59.85) and 500 freestyle (6:00.00).

Amherst’s Grant Donta-Venman punched a ticket in the 200 freestyle, posting a winning and qualifying time of 2:02.81.

Amherst teammate Eli Laney also punched a ticket in the 500 freestyle (5:42.17), while the Hurricanes’ 400 freestyle relay team of Eli Laney, Jacob Laney, Grant Donta-Venman and Samuel Kennedy earned an invitation with a time of 3:55.52.

At Minnechaug, a host of Belchertown swimmers notched invitations to the sectional championship thanks to strong swims.

Belchertown’s Cheri Willems earned a spot in the 100 freestyle (59.91), and teammate Bethany Lavoie was a qualifier in the 100 backstroke (1:08.23).

On the boys side, five Orioles qualified for sectionals during Saturday’s meet. Ryan Shea (200 free, 2:00.00), Nathan Wheeler (200 free, 2:01.20), Peter Elias (100 back, 1:05.82), Derek Gould (100 breast, 1:09.82) and Brady Perkins (100 breast, 1:10.67) all took advantage of their final opportunity.

Girls basketball

South Hadley 51, Monson 35 – Another defensive gem from the Tigers saw them hold the Mustangs to just 23 points across the final three quarters on Sunday.

Ava Asselin paced the South Hadley offense with 14 points, followed by Caitlin Dean (nine points), Kacie Levrault (seven) and Alex Jackson (seven).

Monson led 12-6 after one quarter before the Tigers rallied to take a 22-18 lead at halftime. South Hadley outscored the Mustangs by a 29-17 margin after intermission.

Belchertown 50, Monument Mountain 38 – Chloe LaRoche poured in a game-high 22 points, as the visiting Orioles earned a solid road victory in Great Barrington on Saturday night.

Macie Bolton joined her in double figures with 13 points. Belchertown led 31-25 at halftime and used a 15-8 edge in the third quarter to create some separation.


Frontier 42, South Hadley 36
Smith Voc 35, Frontier 30
South Hadley 36, Smith Voc 33
E. Longmeadow 60, South Hadley 12 –
Jake Mattson needed just 11 seconds to earn a pin at 195 pounds against South Hadley, as the Redhawks competed in a multi-school meet on Saturday at East Longmeadow High School.

Javion Cabrera also earned a first-round pin at 285 pounds for the Hawks, which received wins on the mat from Conner Hoffman (170) and Tavo Vincent-Warner (132).

South Hadley’s Logan Luis picked up a win at 126 against Frontier, and Jasiel Ramos won against East Longmeadow at 170.

Smith Vocational won all four matches contested against South Hadley but lost due to forfeitures. Mateo Henriques (106), Jack Rahilly (126), Matthew Small (132) and Forrest McSweeney (152) all earned victories.