The West Haven football team traveled to Middletown to face the Xavier Falcons on Friday afternoon at Larry McHugh Field. After the West Haven defense forced the Falcons to go three and out on their first drive, the Blue Devils wasted little time getting on the board. Jaden Grant’s 10-yard touchdown run capped the Westies first possession giving the boys a 6-0 lead just 2:25 into the contest.
The Blue Devils would increase their lead with a Justin Medina 6-yard TD run to make it 12-0 with 5:10 left in the quarter. Jaden Grant picked up his second touchdown of the game with a 39-yard touchdown run and it was 18-0 fifty-one seconds into the second quarter. On West Haven’s next possession, Jordan Berrios hit Demerick Blackford on a quick slant pattern and Blackford did the rest, sprinting to the endzone for a 55-yard touchdown pass with 7:34 left in the half to increase the lead to 24-0. After the Westies were stopped on a fourth down at midfield, the Falcons were able to drive deep into West Haven territory and got on the board with a 5-yard touchdown pass with five seconds left in the half to cut the lead to 24-7.
The Blue Devils picked up where they left off to start the second half. After Jordan Berrios broke a 50-yard run to get the Westies down to the Xavier 12-yard line, Jaden Grant scored his third touchdown of the game on a 12-yard rush 2:22 into the third quarter. A successful extra point by Isaac Morales made it 31-7. Mekiel Coates made it 37-7 with a 6-yard TD run just seven seconds into the fourth quarter. The Falcons responded with a 65-yard touchdown run with 6:18 left in the game to make it 37-14. After a botched snap on a Xavier third down late in the game pinned the Falcons at their own 1-yard line, the Xavier punter took the next snap and proceeded to run out of the back of the endzone for a safety with 1:53 left to give the Blue Devils a 39-14 victory.
This week, the Westies travel to Shelton on Thursday night for a 7 p.m. game with the Gaels at Finn Stadium. Next week, the boys will wrap up their regular season hosting the Fairfield Prep Jesuits in their annual Thanksgiving game, this year taking place on Wednesday night at 7.
The girls soccer team traveled to Woodbridge on Monday afternoon to take on the #9 seeded Amity Spartans in the first round of the CIAC playoffs in less than perfect conditions. With a steady rain falling, the Spartans took advantage getting on the board first with a goal 13:40 into the game for the 1-0 lead. After being awarded a penalty kick for a foul in the box, the soggy conditions came into play again when goalkeeper Mackenzie Gardner guessed correctly, diving to the left but slipping in the process, had the ball just elude her fingertips to put the Spartans ahead by two with 19:31 left in the first half.
Amity would increase its lead to 3-0 when they scored again with 5:25 left in the half. The Blue Devils broke through for a goal with 2:21 left in the half when Kelsey Gilmore set up Keegan Riccio in front and she drove the ball inside the left post to cut the lead to 3-1. The Westies had another, golden opportunity when Jessica Robinson got a pass in front but, her kick sailed just wide to the right with four seconds left in the half.
The girls had a couple of opportunities in the second half but, the score would remain the same and the Westies season came to an end with the 3-1 final. Mackenzie Gardner finished with eight saves between the pipes for West Haven.
About an hour later, the volleyball team also took on the Amity Spartans in Woodbridge. The 23-seeded Blue Devils knew they had their work cut out for them facing the 10-seeded Spartans with hard-hitting All-Stater, Abby Harbinson. The Spartans jumped out to a quick lead in the first game before , 25-10, and then proceeded to win the next, two games, 25-14 and 25-17, to sweep the Westies, 3-0. Nancy Tapia had six kills and four digs, Jennifer Ortiz had five assists and three digs, CC Condon had six digs, Giliana Santaniello contributed with six assists and two digs while Bria Stanley had six kills to lead West Haven.
The boys soccer team seeded No. 31 traveled to West Hartford on Tuesday afternoon to take on the 2-seeded Hall Warriors. The Warriors used constant pressure to create numerous opportunities and keep the Blue Devils on their heels for most of the contest. Hall scored 5:48 into the game, added another goal 12:16 later and then scored off a corner kick with 9:24 left in the half to take a 3-0 lead. The Westies bottled up most of the first half did have a couple of chances in the waning moments of the half. In the 37th minute, a West Haven shot was stopped when the Hall keeper was able to get his hand on the ball before it struck the crossbar. Moments later Mohammed Cherif had an opportunity at the right of the goal that was stopped and then with 3.5 seconds left in the half, Aldo Barragan drove a set piece just wide of the right post as time expired.
The second half saw a deluge of rain and Warrior goals. After Matt Bello made a beautiful stop defending an empty West Haven goal, Hall’s offense was too much for the Blue Devils.
The Warriors scored a goal with 25:52 left in the game to increase the lead to 4-0, again 4:05 later to make it 5-0, and another 2:52 after that to pad the lead to 6-0.
The Warriors would tack on two, more goals with 12:56 left and then with 4 minutes left for an 8-0 lead. The Blue Devils had one, more chance to try to get on the board with 3:11 left when Mike Aksoy drove a wet ball that squirted through the Hall keeper’s legs and headed for the net but, the Warrior keeper scrambled and dove to grab the ball inches from the goal line to preserve the shutout and eliminate the Westies.