In the Southern Connecticut Conference semifinals on Tuesday, Cheshire High School girls’ soccer (top seed, 17-0-1) stayed unbeaten with a 4-0 victory over Branford (fourth seed, 13-5). In going 3-0 against the Hornets this fall, CHS outscored their rival 10-0.
In this meeting, it took just 2:48 for the Rams to strike first. After being given an indirect free kick, senior tri-captain Gabby Tirado took a step on the ball and then senior tri-captain Anna Hurlbut booted it into the left side of the net.
The Rams extended the lead with 17:21 left in the first half. Senior Haley Shaw worked to control the ball on the right side and then found Tirado for the second goal.
With 7:30 remaining before halftime, junior Ally Corris received a pass from Tirado and scored her first goal at the left post.
To cap the scoring with 35:44 remaining, Shaw scored on a charge to the net.
Junior goalkeeper Sophie Bates posted three saves in Cheshire’s 13th shutout of the season.
Cheshire advanced to play defending champion Mercy (second seed, 15-2-1) in Thursday’s SCC title game at West Haven. The game is slated for 5:30 p.m.
Mercy is the defending champion. In 2020, the Tigers also beat CHS, 1-0, in the SCC A Division final.
Field Hockey (second seed, 13-4-1)
After dropping two rivalry games in the regular season, the Rams earned a 1-0 win over Daniel Hand (third seed, 12-5-1) in the SCC semifinals.
Cheshire put up the only goal on their first penalty corner. Senior Julia Bailey made a short pass to sophomore Sarah Goldstein, who turned around and scored with two minutes left in the first quarter.
The Tigers made a late push in the fourth quarter, however, junior goalkeeper Ginny Curello made four saves during the frame to secure her eighth shutout.
In a huge play, Curello dove to her left to save a point-blank shot by Hand junior Kelly Kilbourn.
Hand was awarded a pair of untimed penalty corners to finish the game, but the Rams defense came up clutch to clinch the win.
On Thursday at 7:15 p.m., Cheshire plays Branford (fourth seed, 12-4-1-1) for the SCC crown at Amity in Woodbridge. On Sept. 29, the Rams won 1-0 at Branford.
CHS aims to claim their first crown since earning a three-peat from 2011-13.
Girls’ Volleyball (top seed, 19-2)
Following a first-round bye, Cheshire picked up their 11th straight victory, 3-0 (25-6, 25-15, 25-15), over West Haven (eighth seed, 13-9) in the SCC quarterfinals.
Senior tri-captain Avery Mola earned 12 kills and an ace. Sophomore Eva Catalanotto compiled six kills, an assist, and a block, while senior Alex Lucas chipped in five kills.
Senior Mimi Perlini tallied 14 assists, six aces (personal high), and a dig. Senior tri-captain Sophia Surato picked up eight assists and five digs.
On Thursday at 6 p.m., the Rams play Guilford (fourth seed, 16-5) in the semifinals.
Boys’ Soccer (second seed, 12-3-1)
CHS saw their nine-game unbeaten streak come to a close, falling 1-1 (4-3 in penalty kicks) to Fairfield Prep (sixth seed, 10-3-5) in the SCC semifinals. The Jesuits won the season series at 2-0-1.
Fairfield had a golden opportunity to jump ahead in the opening half, but senior defensive back Jack Markarian raced up to kick the ball away from an open net.
The Jesuits returned to get the opening goal with 6:46 left before intermission. Junior goalkeeper Nolan Kappus raced out to grab a loose ball, but Fairfield senior Brando Savi lobbed the ball into the net.
After the break, the Rams drew even with 35:02 left in regulation. On a free kick by senior quad-captain Samir Dishnica, senior quad-captain Colin Brown possessed the ball on the left post and then passed across to junior Will Stearns for a shot into the right side of the net.
Both teams created opportunities through the second half and two 10-minute overtime periods, but when they weren’t able to convert, the game finished up with penalty kicks.
Fairfield jumped out to a 3-1 lead lead in the extra session and didn’t give it up. For the Rams, Dishnica, senior Zach Chen, and Brown netted PKs, but Jesuits senior goalkeeper Nicolas Vittoria tallied two saves to secure the win.
Fairfield senior Jack Hickey had the eventual winning PK.
Kappus finished with seven saves.
The Rams will now prepare for the Class L Tournament in which they will hold the top seed.