The West Haven Seahawks 8U team remained unbeaten and improved its record to 9-0 with a convincing 26-0 win over the New Haven Steelers in the Southern Connecticut Conference semi-finals held at Kennedy Stadium in Bridgeport. Tristian Crawford had two electrifying rushing touchdowns.
Majesty Whitaker added a rushing score and connected with Kayden Desruisseaux for another. CJ Schaulder and Jermaine Gibbs chipped in with extra points. The defense was led by Jacari Harris, William Pastore, Jayden Potter, Mason Booker and Jayden Spell who had five solo tackles.
The 12U Seahawk team (8-2) fought tough but fell to a very talented and undefeated Stratford Redskins, 26-7. Quarterback Nick Conlan and running back Bryan Tillman played well on offense. The defense played well but gave up some big plays. Defensive standouts were Ethan Holy, Yahinus Mercer and Aedan Coe who scored the Seahawks lone score on a 45-yard fumble recovery and added the extra point conversion.
The 8U Seahawks will host the Waterbury Patriots (8-1) this Saturday at Veterans Memorial Field at 3 for the Southern Connecticut Pop Warner Championship. The winner advances to the state championship game against the winner of the Northern Connecticut Pop Warner Conference.
The road warriors of the West Haven Squirt A travel hockey team won their seventh game of the season on Sunday.
The Blue Devils defeated ECHO A, 9-6, at the Bolton Ice Palace behind forward Cameren Lipford’s five goals and goaltender Alex Werle’s 23 saves. Forwards Grady Schulte and Tyler Silva contributed two goals each for the Westies.
The Blue Devils worked hard and played well, outskating the Stars of the Eastern Connecticut Hockey Organization from the drop of the puck and taking advantage of scoring opportunities on their way to a convincing victory.
Just over a minute into the contest, Schulte put the Westies on the scoreboard first on a shot that bounced over the ECHO goaltender. The Stars tied it two minutes later before briefly pulling ahead 2-1 at 8:30 of the first period. Lipford answered for the Blue Devils at 6:19 of the first, scoring on a rebound from defenseman Andrew Grillo. Schulte then made it 3-2 on a power-play goal from the left faceoff circle to close out the period.
The Westies opened the floodgates in the second, notching five goals. Lipford started the offensive juggernaut at 11:50 of the period, launching a wrist shot from inside the right blue line to make it 4-2. At 9:27 of the second, Silva backhanded a rebound past the ECHO goaltender to put the Blue Devils up 5-2.
After the Stars cut the Westies’ lead to 5-3, Lipford answered with a short-handed goal from the right faceoff circle to make it 6-3 with defenseman Kyle Guarino assisting on the play.
At 4:55 of the second, Lipford caught a pass from Grillo and wristed a shot high to the blocker side to put the Blue Devils up 7-4. Silva made it 8-4 at 2:24 of the period, scoring in front of the net on a pass from forward Aedan Guarino.
Midway through the third, Lipford scored from the right faceoff circle to make it 9-5 and preserve the win for the Westies.
On Saturday, West Haven fell, 9-2, to Stamford A at Terry Connors Rink. Lipford and Silva scored for the Blue Devils.
The West Haven Peewee AA team was in action Friday night, hosting the Jr Wolfpack AAA at Bennett Rink where the Westies posted an 8-2 victory.
Brody gave the Westies a 1-0 lead with 11:58 left in first. Just minutes into the second period, Thomas Porto found the back of the net after Nick Eberhart led Nicky Stevens in the offensive zone with a pass.
With 9:01 remaining, DiNuzzo beat the goalie on a wrister for a 3-0 advantage. The Westies tacked on five more goals, scored by Porto, Jack Aloi, Billy Mascari, Nick Salzano and Tim Donohue. Gabe Locklear was outstanding assisting on multiple goals and Zach Goetze played very well.
Strong defense from John Donohue, Cooper Deko and Beckett Stenz played a key role in West Haven posting the win. The goaltending was split by Tyler Donroe and Nate Kempton, who both played very well in net.
On Saturday, the Westies hosted South Windsor in CHC action in Hamden. West Haven proved to be too much for the Knights as the team peppered South Windsor in a 12-0 victory.
Deko got the Westies going as he sent a shot from the point past the goaltender. The flood gates opened as John Donohue, Locklear, and Connor Benz each tacked on two goals. Tim Donohue added one goal, but it was Porto who stole the show with a four-goal game.
Kempton and Donroe combined for the shutout as they were solid between the pipes. With the win, West Haven extended its win streak to 11 straight games.
The West Haven Peewee A travel hockey team pushed its undefeated streak to four games with two wins this weekend. The Blue Devils defeated Ridgefield A, 3-1, and blitzed Watertown A, 10-3. West Haven is now 8-9-1 overall and 7-5-0 in CHC league play.
On Saturday evening at the Winter Garden Ice Arena, the Westies got a pair of goals from Mike Page and a couple of brilliant saves from Jacob Silva down the stretch to knock off Ridgefield, 3-1.
Ridgefield took an early 1-0 lead before the Blue Devils settled in and took control of the game. Matt Kelly passed to Sean Studley who fired a stretch pass that split the defense to Ronnie Mastroni. Mastroni deked and scored to tie it 7:12 into the game. With three minutes left in the first period, Brady Price skated around a defender and left a drop pass for Mikey Page’s one-timer. The goal gave West Haven a 2-1 lead at the first intermission.
Early in the second period, Jonathan Charbonneau flicked a pass to the front of the goal where Page jammed it home giving the Westies a two-goal lead. Silva, who ended with ten saves, made a pair of crucial kick saves in the third period to ice the win. Greg Galasso started in net and posted nine saves.
On Sunday morning at Edward L. Bennett Rink, the Westies scored six goals in the second period, including three by Mastroni, to drop the Watertown Red Wings by a final score of 10-3. Chris Consorte and Alex Bowery each scored twice in the victory.
The Blue Devils spent much of the first period killing penalties but managed a 2-1 lead at the break. Matt Kelly passed to Ryan Pniewski for a shot from the point and Studley jammed home the rebound to open the scoring. Bowery then converted Price’s pass from behind the net.
Mastroni scored on two breakaways to open the second period with assists from Bowery and Connor Moriarty. Mastroni then took Bowery’s pass and went between his legs for a goal through the five-hole to earn his hat trick.
Zach Melchiore cashed in Consorte’s pass followed by goals from Bowery and Page to give the Westies an 8-2 lead after two periods. Consorte scored two goals twenty seconds apart, one from Moriarty and one unassisted, to complete the scoring in the third period. Silva and Galasso combined for 14 saves in goal.
The West Haven Bantam A travel hockey team split a pair of games this weekend, falling to the Riverhawks and topping Stamford.
West Haven opened the weekend with a 7-3 loss against the Riverhawks Saturday afternoon at the Edward L. Bennett Rink in West Haven. Cade Simone led the offense with two goals, Cam Delvecchio added a goal and an assist, and Dave Brown and Sean Bosworth also had assists.
Simone gave West Haven a 1-0 first period lead off an assist from Brown, but the Riverhawks closed the period with three straight goals. Delvecchio set up Simone 3:35 into the second to get the Westies within a goal, but the Riverhawks again answered with three more tallies for a 6-2 lead.
Delvecchio then scored off an assist from Bosworth with 1:50 remaining, but the Westies never got closer.
West Haven got back on the winning track with a 5-1 road victory over Stamford Sunday evening. Bosworth and Mickey Dowd each scored twice, while Jayden Spreyer and Michael Madera each had a pair of assists.
Bosworth opened the scoring for the Westies with a tap-in of a Brown pass in front, before Stamford evened the contest 3:47 in. Bosworth gave West Haven a lead it would never relinquish when he tapped in a pass from Colin Deane 2:25 into the second period. Delvecchio increased the margin to 3-1.The Westies had a 4-1 lead when Dowd scored in front. The trio was at it again with 3:57 remaining in the game when Spreyer and Madera set up Dowd in front for the 5-1 final.
Brendan Smith played well in goal, making several key saves in the second period. The defense of Brown, Axelrod, Jason Alling, Matt Wezenski, Bosworth, and Josh Gyolai was solid in the victory.
The West Haven Seahawk cheerleading squads traveled to the Paul Tsongas Center located in Lowell, Mass this past weekend to compete along with hundreds of other teams from the Pop Warner new England region.
The Junior Peewee (9 and 10) team came in first place and was crowned New England Regional Champions in their large division. The team will now travel to ESPN’s Wide World of Sports located at Disneyworld in December where they will have squads from the other eight regions for the chance to win a national championship.
The Peewee cheerleaders came in second place for both their competition and sideline routines. The squad faced very good competition and was named New England Region runner up. The top two teams in each division move onto the National Championships.
The junior Varsity team faced ten other squads from the New England region in the small division and really performed well. They were crowed New England champions in both their competition and sideline routines. They will join the Junior Peewee and Peewee squads at the national championships.
The Mitey Mite squad (7 & 8) performed well with competition from all the states and did not place. The team had a very successful year and the future looks bright.
Football — An exciting back-and-forth affair between Notre Dame and Xavier ended up in heartbreak for the Green Knights. Trailing 28-21 with less than 90 seconds left in the game, Notre Dame was poised to tie the game but couldn’t convert a fourth-down conversion inside the Xavier 10-yard line, leading to a Falcon win.
In a see-saw affair, Notre Dame jumped on top 7-0 on a 32-yard pass connection from Jackson Zalinsky to Tommy Candelora. Xavier fumbled on its first play from scrimmage, but Notre Dame couldn’t turn the miscue into points and were forced to punt and pinned the Falcons inside the 10-yard line. Xavier proceeded to drive 93 yards to tie the score on a Drew Kron 5-yard scamper.
The Falcons grabbed a 14-7 lead with 2:50 left in the opening quarter on a DJ White 52-yard run. But the Green Knights answered with an 8-yard slant pass to Robbie Oliverio and the game was tied at 14-14 heading into halftime. The team’s continued to trade touchdowns with Xavier taking the lead at 21-14 on the opening drive of the third quarter. Bryce Sweetapple went untouched from seven yards out and the Falcons led. Notre Dame put a checker on a checker when Candelora and Zalinsky connected on another score and the game was tied at 21-21 with 8:25 left in the third quarter.
Xavier took the lead on a Kron 65-yard scamper with 1:27 left in the third quarter. It would be the final score of the game. The Green Knights return to action traveling to play Fairfield Prep on Friday in a 6 p.m. kickoff
Soccer — Emotions always run high on Senior Night and this year was no different as 11 soccer seniors were honored before the team’s final regular season contest against career on Oct. 28. Thomas Ellis scored a hat trick while fellow senior Chase Socquet played through heartbreak and stole the show by posting a shutout in goal to lead the Notre Dame soccer team to a 4-0 win over Career.
Socquet, playing his second game following the tragic passing of his father last week, made 13 total saves to record a clean sheet between the pipes. He was replaced with five minutes left to an emotional standing ovation from those in attendance, including a spirited Green Machine student section.
Ellis opened the scoring less than 90 seconds into the game and that was the only goal of the first half. Nicholas Vitti doubled the lead before Ellis added two more scores. Notre Dame will have had two weeks off before resuming play in the first round of the Class L state tournament on Monday.
You can get all the latest athletic news, scores, and more by following @NDWHAthletics on Twitter, Instagram, and Periscope while frieNDing the @NDWHAthletics Facebook group.
The West Haven football team fell to 2-4 with a 37-0 loss against top-ranked Hand of Madison Friday night. With plenty to play for as head coach Dave Mastroianni made his return from his battle with cancer, the Tigers turned to their senior leadership to roll to a victory over West Haven in a Southern Connecticut Conference Tier I contest in West Haven.
Quarterback Phoenix Billings was on the mark in the opening half, connecting on 13-of-15 passes for 165 yards and two touchdowns, while fellow senior Austin Doyle spoiled any chance of a West Haven comeback with a key fumble recovery in the opening half. Billings finished 15-of-20 for 199 yards and three touchdowns.
Hand senior Jesse Lutz returned the opening kickoff 90 yards for a score and an 8-0 lead just 14 seconds into the game.
The Tigers (7-0) wasted no time taking a 16-0 lead as an 11-play, 80-yard drive was capped when Billings hit Isaiah McNeilly with a 19-yard touchdown pass with 3 minutes, 47 seconds left in the opening quarter.
The Westies (2-4) had a golden opportunity to get back in the game when Hand fumbled on its next possession and James Parker recovered at the Hand 42. But, two plays later, Hand’s Doyle recovered a West Haven fumble to set up another Hand score.
Billings hit Ethan Haberman for 67 yards on the first play, and Lutz scored from five yards out two plays later for a 23-0 advantage with 2:50 gone by in the second quarter.
Hand put the game away with 57 seconds remaining in the half, capping a seven-play drive with a 2-yard toss from Billings to Seth Sweitzer.
The Tigers added the final touchdown of the game with 6:29 left in the third quarter as Billings hit Haberman for a 34-yard score.
Hand’s defense was equally impressive, holding West Haven to just one yard of offense in the third quarter and 39 total yards in the second half, which also included running time after Hand’s final touchdown. The Tigers held West Haven quarterback Andre Rentas to just 51 yards passing.
Winners of four of five contests, the West Haven volleyball team looked to close the regular season in style on Senior Night. Unfortunately for the Westies, Career had other ideas.
After battling the entire contest, West Haven could not pull out the victory in a 23-25, 25-21, 23-25, 25-15, 13-15 loss at West Haven High Monday evening.
After two-point losses in the first and third games, West Haven rebounded after each. The match came down to the final game and Career was able to hold off the Westies in the fifth and deciding game.
Giliana Santaniello ran the offense with 11 assists. Santaniello also added 11 digs defensively, while Thiana Baez had 10 digs and three aces. Noelle Noble played well defensively with 17 digs and added seven kills on offense, while Neve Krajcir also had 17 digs, and added five aces and three kills. Savannah Lopez also played well with eight assists and six kills, while Chekeenah Jeudi had four kills.
Winless in five straight contests, the West Haven boys soccer team needed a big win before postseason play. The Westies got that win Monday evening.
Facing East Haven on the road, the Westies got goals from five different players in a dominant 5-0 win over East Haven. With the victory, West Haven improved to 7-6-3 on the year.
Brian Carew needed to make just one save in the shutout, while Jovan Loja, Sebastian Navarro, and Mario Acevedo each had their first career varsity goals, and Tejean Campbell picked up his first varsity assist.
After a scoreless first half, Loja scored off an assist from Luis Lopez at the 49 minute, 25 second mark for a 1-0 lead. Aldo Barragan made it a 2-0 game off an assist from Kevin Morales 1:40 later.
The Westies continued to pour it on when Bernard Ocansey scored at the 53:44 mark.
Campbell set up Navarro at the 68:18 mark and Derick Meza set up Mario Acevedo at 77:38.
West Haven held a 32-2 shot advantage in the game.
The West Haven girls swimming team fell to East Haven / Cross 99-71 Monday afternoon. With the loss, West Haven dropped to 1-10 on the season.
The Westies had one first place finish as Victoria Acuna took home the top spot in the 100 free in 1 minute, 4.69 seconds.
West Haven had nine second place finishes in the meet. The 200 medley relay team of Madison Hobart, Molly Wilson, Acuna, and Kaelyn Falanga was second in 2:08.77, the 200 free relay team of Hobart, Eileen Barrington, Wilson, and Morgan Falanga placed second in 1:56.06, and the 400 free relay team of Acuna, Morgan Falanga, Alana Orecchio, and Kaelyn Falanga was second in 4:17.20.
The 200 free saw Morgan Falanga second in 2:18.81, the 50 free had Kaelyn Falanga second in 28.07 seconds, the 100 free saw Acuna second in 1:04.69, and the 500 free had Kaelyn Falanga second in 6:05.95.
Hobart was second in the 100 back in 1:13.75 and Wilson placed second in the 100 breast in 1:20.76.
The Westies fell to Guilford 97.5-85.5 Wednesday afternoon in West Haven. West Haven had a pair of first place finishes as the 200 medley relay team of Hobart, Wilson, Kaelyn Falanga, and Morgan Falanga won in 2 minutes, 4.53 seconds. The 1 meter diving had Kaylee Taulty win with 166.05 points.
West Haven also had 10 second place finishes. In the 200 IM, Orecchio was second in 2:38.79, while Kaelyn Falanga was second in the 50 free 27.86 seconds.
In one-meter diving, Eva Predom was second with 112.25 points, while the 100 fly had Hobart second in 1:12.69. The 100 free had Acuna second in 1:03.28, the 500 free saw Kaelyn Falanga second in 5:56.60. Hobart was also second in the 100 back 1:15.63, and Wilson was second in the 100 breast in 1:19.81.
The 200 free relay placed second with a team of Hobart, Acuna, Kaelyn Falanga, and Morgan Falanga in 1:53.70. The 400 free relay team of Orecchio, Acuna, McKenna Driver, and Sofia Shubin was second in 4:32.31.
For all of your West Haven sporting news all season long, including game articles, photos, videos and more, visit www.westieblue.com.
BPGC to meet
The Bradley Point Garden Club of West Haven will hold its monthly meeting at noon on Tuesday, Nov. 19, at the Ora Mason Library, 260 Benham Hill Road. The program will be the Gift Exchange. Call Marie at (203) 878-8428 if you are interested in becoming a member.
The First Congregational church, 464 Campbell Ave., will host its monthly Used Book Sale and Clothes Closet opening on Saturday, Nov. 9 between the hours of 9-2. As usual there will be a large selection of books for sale including many books to help you celebrate Christmas, and many articles of clothing at very low prices. Call (203) 933-6291 for more information.
‘Blue Devil Sip’
The West Haven Penalty Box Club will hostthe Blue Devil Sip, a wine and spirit tasting, on Friday, Nov. 15, 6-10 p.m. at The Italian-American Club, 85 Chase Lane. Tastings of Wine, Bourbon, Scotch, Vodka and other Spirits with hors d’oeuvres and cash bar. There will also be a sports memorabilia silent auction and door prizes. Cost for the tasting will be $20.
This event will support the West Haven High School boys’ varsity hockey team. The money raised will go towards the scholarships, equipment and development of the sport in high school.
A donation will also be made to the Westies Care Charity.
‘Back to the Oldies’
A “Back to the Oldies” dance is scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 9, at Cielo Ballroom (WH IA club),
85 Chase Lane, from 8 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. A raffle will benefit the Muscular Dystrophy Association.
Music is by D.J Charles Rosenay, featuring singer Carla Gemma. Smoke Free!! Cash Bar!
Cost is $25 per person For info call Geri, (203) 795-5473 or Lucy, (203) 468-2528.
Atlantic City trip
F. Seniors and Friends are running a trip to Atlantic City on Jan. 6-8, at Resorts Casino. Cost of the trip is doubles, $235; triples, $229, single, $319. Four meals, two shows and slot play included. Reservation must be with a deposit is $50 person with final payment due Nov. 29. Call Fred Morgillo, (203) 389-5808, or (203) 927-4249.
The West Haven Italian-American Civic Association Senior Center is seeking new members to join its Tuesday senior gathering. Join a group of friendly seniors in an afternoon of good company, with Bingo, cards, trips to casinos and conversations with like-minded people and more. We meet at the club, 85 Chase Lane, each Tuesday from noon to 3. The cost is just $3 per week to cover expenses. We offer refreshments at no additional cost. Call Sherri Torre, (203) 932-2893 for further information.
Senior Center trips
Join the West Haven Seniors on the following scheduled trip: All trips leave from Savin Rock Conference Center:
Monday, Dec. 9 — The Westchester Broadway Theatre – “The Edwards Twins” New Holiday Themed Show! Direct from Las Vegas identical twins Anthony and Edward make musical legends come alive for this holiday performance. Sonny & Cher, Neil Diamond, Johnny Mathis and Barbara Streisand just to name a few of the acts re-created by the talented twins. Enjoy lunch at the theatre before the show. Cost $90 due by Nov. 1. Bus leaves Savin Rock Conference Center 9:30. Departs Westchester approximately at 3:45.
A flyer with further details is available at the office at the West Haven Senior Center 201 Noble St. or you can call the Senior Center (203) 937-3507.
The Liberty Coin Club of West Haven, organized in1962, will host a Coin Show on Sunday, Oct. 20, and Dec. 15, at the Elks Club, 265 Main St., from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Admission is free. Anyone with an interest in buying, selling or collecting coins, or with questions about coins, is welcome to attend. Expert dealers and collectors will be on hand.
An Al-Anon meeting group invites new members to attend its weekly meetings on Wednesdays at 7:30 p.m. in the First Lutheran Church, 52 George St. For information and details, call (203) 506-1464.
The Seth Haley Memorial Loan Fund of West Haven provides eligible college students with loans of up to $2500 to help students finish their post high school education.
Applicants must be West Haven residents who have completed two or more years of college or post-secondary work or be in their final two years of advanced work. Any West Haven resident attending college or a post high school professional, technical or trade school can be eligible for a loan. Repayments do not begin, and no interest will be charged until one year after graduation. If you are interested in making an application for a loan, please call Ralph Lawson, (203) 934-6442.
By Josh LaBella
By painting a picture in the theater of the mind, George DeMaio said he used his skills to teach student’s history and to highlight high school athletics.
DeMaio was born and raised in West Haven. He spent his childhood and adolescence playing basketball, baseball, soccer and, occasionally, football. Sports have always been very important to the broadcaster and radio host, as they are for many West Haven residents.
“I was honored my senior year by being named athlete of the year in 1966,” said DeMaio. “In fact, in December of last year, I was inducted into the West Haven Hall of Fame.”
After graduating high school, DeMaio said he went on to study elementary education at Southern Connecticut State University. When he finished his degree in 1970, he applied for and got a 5th grade teaching position at Thompson School. He said it was an ominous beginning.
“That particular year, being so pumped up to get my first teaching job, they went on strike,” said DeMaio. “So, I had to wait two weeks before I actually started my teaching career. I actually picketed with the teachers. That’s how I met them.”
DeMaio said he taught at Thompson for four years before leaving to work various jobs including one at Southern New England Telecommunications, a telecommunications company. It was during this time, while DeMaio and his wife were raising their two sons in East Haven that his friend Ralph Solli told him about a sportscasting job opening at KC101.
The broadcaster said he had done some play-by-play broadcasting on the town’s community access show. According to DeMaio, he recording a sports report in one take, and sent it in. He said he was notified soon after that his final interview would be a live sports report on the station.
When he walked into the station, DeMaio said he was wearing his championship jacket from coaching East Haven mini basketball. He said they jokingly told him that if he got the job, they would call him “The Coach,” the name stuck.
The broadcaster went into the studio and did his broadcast from memory, without notes. He said he got a call later that night informing him he was hired. DeMaio said he was always fascinated by sports broadcasting, citing the famous New York Yankees broadcaster Mel Allen as one of his influences.
“When I was a young kid, even in elementary school, whenever I played sports, I always did play-by-plays of the game,” he said. “Don’t ask me why.”
DeMaio worked part time at the radio station while also working at SNET. In 1985 he became a full-time employee of KC101. He said his skill in broadcasting comes from knowing and loving the whatever sport he is covering and by “doing his homework” on both teams playing.
“I think the one thing I’ve told people who tell me they want to do [sports broadcasting] is you have to make your game, the game your broadcasting, the best game ever played,” said DeMaio. “No matter what the teams are and what the score is. If you don’t, why would they [the audience] listen?”
The Coach said a good radio broadcaster paints a vivid picture in the mind of the listener. He said
During his tenure at KC101 and his current station WELI, DeMaio has grown his programming to cover men and women’s basketball and hockey as well as baseball, softball and football. He said he enjoys covering high school sports and has turned down higher paying job offers. He never wanted to move around, he said, and always thought it was important to highlight high school athletes.
“The kids love it. The parents love it,” said DeMaio. “The aunts. The uncles. The grandparents. It’s a place for them to listen and hear about their kids. That’s what it’s all about.”
DeMaio said he covers over one hundred games a year and is adding more to his schedule this year and in 2020. He described his job as “a lot of work” but added that he has “a lot of fun.”
From 1994 to 2008, DeMaio went back to part time as a radio host while he taught middle school social studies in East Haven. He said he brought the same type of energy he used in coaching and broadcasting to the classroom.
“I get into it,” he said. “I want to make social studies, which can be boring, exciting. They played games. I made contests. If there was something else I could have done [in life] I would have been a gameshow host. When I go and cover a big game, I want to have fun. And, I wanted my kids to have fun in the classroom.”
Looking to the future, the Coach said he thinks he will know when it’s time to retire – but that time has not come. DeMaio said he still enjoys the work he does. When he does retire, he wants to travel around the country with his wife and dog to visit the Major League Baseball stadiums.
West Haven was among the Connecticut municipalities recognized at the New Britain Museum of American Art on Oct. 30 for achieving certification as a Sustainable CT community.
The city met high standards in a broad range of sustainability accomplishments to qualify for the prestigious Bronze certification, said Lynn Stoddard, executive director of the Institute for Sustainable Energy at Eastern Connecticut State University, which administers the Sustainable CT program.
Sustainable CT, a statewide initiative that inspires and supports communities in becoming more efficient, resilient and inclusive, announced its 2019 certified communities last week.
“This is really exciting news for the city,” Mayor Nancy R. Rossi said. “I would like to thank the volunteers and city employees who invested their time and hard work as part of the West Haven Sustainability Team. They were key to the success of this effort and on achieving the Bronze certification.”
In its application for Sustainable CT certification, West Haven amassed 390 points in 23 of 56 possible action categories, far exceeding the required 200 points for Bronze certification. Additionally, the city was nominated as a CT Success Story for the in-depth and thorough work done on assessing and addressing climate vulnerability.
“West Haven’s achievement of Bronze certification in only the second year of the Sustainable CT initiative is a credit to the diligence and forward-thinking of many city employees and commission members during financially challenging times,” said Robin Parsons, who leads the West Haven Sustainability Team. “This certification not only grants recognition to those efforts, it provides a foundation for West Haven to become a leader in municipal sustainability in the years to come.”
Certification lasts for three years, with Connecticut’s first cohort of municipalities certified in 2018. Collectively, 47 municipalities — more than 27% of the state’s communities — have earned Sustainable CT certification. Certified communities span every county and include some of Connecticut’s largest cities and smallest towns.
“Congratulations to our 2019 certified Sustainable CT communities,” Stoddard said. “We are inspired by your leadership and eager to share your accomplishments in building efficient, thriving and resilient communities.”
The Sustainable CT program empowers municipalities to create high collective impact for current and future residents and is managed under the leadership of Eastern’s Institute for Sustainable Energy in Willimantic.
Sustainable CT is philanthropically funded, with strong support from its three founding funders: the Emily Hall Tremaine Foundation, the Common Sense Fund and the Smart Seed Fund.
On Dec. 3, the Connecticut Conference of Municipalities will recognize West Haven and the 22 other communities with Bronze certification, as well as the nine communities with Silver certification, at the Sustainable CT 2019 Certified Towns Award Ceremony. The event will take place during CCM’s Annual Convention at Foxwoods Resort Casino in Ledyard.
By Dan Shine
Four Centuries of West Haven Green
With thanks to Historian Peter J Malia for contributing to this series.
Above is an image of the first Christ Church Episcopal in West Haven. This photo shows the mission, later repurposed as St. Martin of the Fields.
The West Haven Green has always been a gathering place for worship, protest, celebration, mourning, schooling… and for making history. It was home to the First Congregational Church built in 1717, which doubled as the village meetinghouse.
The first in a succession of schoolhouses opened just northeast of the meetinghouse in 1729. A new schoolhouse was built in its place in 1805 and served West Haven children until 1857.
Part of the Green was also consecrated as a graveyard that remained active until 1878. The graveyard now borders Campbell Avenue on both sides of Church Street. It was originally one contiguous piece of property. In the 19th century, the graveyard was divided between the two churches with some graves being moved to either side to accommodate the creation of Church Street and an expanding Episcopal presence in town.
That presence was not always welcomed, nor peaceful. When Christ Church was built in the very shadows of the Congregational meetinghouse in 1739, the humble little mission stood among the first Anglican (Episcopal) churches in Connecticut. At the time, however, its very existence was a source of trouble in West Haven. Known for its more conservative and Loyalist congregation, Christ Church and its communicants were increasingly suspected of being enemies of American independence.
At one point, the Sons of Liberty led by West Havener Lamberton Smith even demanded that two “treasonous” individuals, both members of Christ Church, be banished from the village. Once the Revolution began, the Congregationalist minister, Rev. Noah Williston, used the meetinghouse as a recruiting station for the rebel militia, which often drilled on the Green.
Fearing violence, the Rev. Bella Hubbard eventually shuttered Christ Church for a good part of the war. Still, the taunting and persecutions continued as the war dragged on. By the end of the Revolution in 1783, some five percent of Christ Church communicants had fled to Canada.
During the Revolution, one incident stands above all others in the history of West Haven’s Green.
On July 5, 1779, an invasion force of some 1,500 British and Hession soldiers marched up what is now Savin Avenue to the Green. While some soldiers busied themselves looting surrounding homes, others were prompted by local Tories to seize the Rev. Williston as a traitor. Seeing their approach, Williston tried to escape, breaking his leg in the process. Dragging him back to the Green, the soldiers made such a ruckus, they attracted the attention of Adjutant William Campbell, a Scottish Highlander and member of His Majesty’s Third Guards. Campbell quickly disbursed the troopers and had Williston carried back to the parsonage, where he then ordered the regimental surgeon to set the minister’s leg, then posted a guard so he would be left in peace.
Less than two hours later, Campbell would be killed atop Milford Hill in Allingtown. Today, a large boulder sits on the southwest portion of the Green across from the West Haven Historical Society to commemorate Adj. Campbell’s act of mercy. A larger monument is in Allingtown inscribed with Campbell’s name and the Biblical beatitude: “Blessed are the Merciful.” (To be continued.)
Peter J. Malia is a native of West Haven and author of Visible Saints: West Haven, 1648 – 1798, available through www.connecticutpress.com; Barnes and Noble in Orange; Amazon, and eBay.