Submitted by, Janice Calvi-Ruimerman
(May 3, 2023) — On Thursday, April 27, 2023, the North Branford Thunderbirds came on to their home field with a vengeance. It was clear from the start that North Branford had a need to avenge their previous game’s loss to Haddam Killingworth.
After several back-and-forth goals from each team, it was clear a rivalry was escalating. As HK took the lead with a 5-3 score, North Branford’s Goalie came out of the box to engage attack player, Seanna (SeaSea) Ruimerman, causing the Thunderbirds goalie to go out on a penalty and HK to press forward with another goal. This unprecedented play did not quell the thunder, but rather ignited the North Branford defense into and aggressive fight for the eventual win.
Despite Gabrielle (Gabby) Williams’ incredible saves on goal shots, North Branford managed to score 17 goals to Haddam Killingworth’s 12. The HK defensive line of Peyton Tyler, Te’a Norman, Brigitte Battistoni, Julia Favalora and Julianna (J-Gag) Gagliardi, played a tight game, but was overpowered by the Thunderbirds at every charge and whistle on defense. Some incredible plays were seen as HK midfielders Senior Captain Sophie Ramino and Junior Samantha (Sammy) Ruimerman gained possession off the draw, while Jamie DiNapoli remained steadfast, picking up ground balls to move quickly downfield to attack players positioned at net. This was a hard loss, but HK’s team walked off the field proudly, having played a clean game.
Goals for this game were earned by Senior Captains Audrey Wrinn 5, Juniors Samantha (Sammy) Ruimerman 1 and Aly Campbell 1 (jump shot), and Sophomores Ava Ramino 2 and Seanna (SeaSea) Ruimerman 3, leaving HK Girls at a loss with a 12-17 score at North Branford.
The Junior Varsity (JV) team was also a victim of the Thunderbirds with a loss on April 27th. The Cougars new JV Goalie, Freshman Chloe Engler, tried to hold the net, giving up only five goals while defending several more shots on goal. Midfielders Julia Berminham and Ellie Firth, along with Attack players Sydney Wrinn and Ella Connelly, kept the ball moving down the field as Defenders Senior Kelsie Piela along with Sophomores Sonya Luneau and Madalyn (Maddy) Catalano tried to hold the net. Scorers for this game were Caroline (Iggy) Ignatuck 1; Senior Ellie Firth 1 and Ella Connelly 1. Great game, Lady Cougars. Way to support and protect your teammates!
See the full season’s game schedule on HKHS Athletics website.