Newtown High School’s boys’ basketball team has certainly been competitive in its four games of the season, but the team is yet to get that first taste of victory.
The Nighthawks dropped each game by a single-digit margin, falling by just two points in the season opener against New Fairfield. Although the first contest was the closest on the early season, Newtown Coach Tim Tallcouch has seen progress from game to game.
Newtown High School’s wrestling team, after battling with Bristol Eastern on December 26, competed in the Danbury Holiday Invitational on December 28. The Nighthawks (with 139 points) placed fifth in the 14-team invitational, won by Danbury (224).
Anthony Falbo took first place in the 152-pound weight class, beating Steven Beckham from Danbury. At 195, Andy Hubina went to the finals, but lost to Jared Wilsey of Bethel. Greg LaRussa (182), James Leuci (132), and Forest Speed (170) all took third place.
From great individual efforts — including record-setting performances — to thrilling team achievements — such as championship triumphs — 2013 had it all in the Newtown sports world. As we bid farewell to ’13 and turn the calendars — and our attention to the games ahead — to 2014, here’s a sampling of some of the many great accomplishments that took place on the Newtown playing surfaces during the past 12 months:
Almost 200 cyclists gathered on Saturday, December 21, for Newtown Cyclocross at Fairfield Hills. The cyclists tested their athletic skills on a challenging hilly 1.75-mile cross-country course that included pavement, snow, mud, turf, and sets of barriers, requiring riders to occasionally run and carry their bikes across unridable terrain.
Newtown High School’s wrestling team was invited to participate in the annual Fairfield Ludlowe Invitational tournament as one of three new challenging teams for the host Falcons to tangle with on the mats. The objective, for the Falcons, was to face tough competition to get better. Mission accomplished — the Nighthawks not only proved to be a difficult foe, but they dethroned the two-time champion Falcons.
Newtown had five individual champions among seven finalists en route to taking top honors in the 12-team tourney on December 21.
DANBURY — Newtown High School’s hockey team overcame a 2-0 deficit and a physical Masuk of Monroe squad to skate away with a hard-fought 3-2 win in the season opener, at Danbury Ice Arena, on December 19.
The Nighthawks then battled back from a 3-1 hole late in the third period to salvage a 3-3 tie with nonconference foe Wilton, also in Danbury, on December 21. Cooper McLean scored twice in the final stanza, including the tying tally with just ten seconds remaining to give Newtown a 1-0-1 record to begin the campaign.
Newtown High School’s boys’ basketball team nearly erased an eight-point deficit in the fourth quarter but a late-game comeback fell just short in a season-opening 51-49 loss to visiting New Fairfield on December 19.
This was a foul-filled contest and both teams saw the outcome literally on the line — the free throw line — down the stretch. All told, the host Nighthawks shot 9 of 20 from the line, and the Rebels were 13 for 23.
It may be very early in the campaign, but it’s never too soon for a team to get its first win, especially with a fairly new roster on the court. Newtown High School’s girls’ basketball team, in its second game of the season, pulled away to defeat visiting Immaculate of Danbury 51-36 on December 16 — a victory Coach Jeremy O’Connell wasn’t about to downplay.
Newtown High School divers, this past fall, made a big splash at the state level. The Nighthawks, collectively, recorded the top scores among all of the state’s teams, helping the NHS girls’ swimming and diving team to an overall 17th-place finish among 57 squads in the State Open.
“At the beginning of the season we definitely knew we had one of the more talented groups in the state,” Coach Zach Gauvin said.