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.
Newtown Babe Ruth Baseball will have its Third Annual Hot Stove Dinner on Thursday, January 16, from 6 to 9 pm at The Waterview in Monroe. This night of baseball is designed to promote a positive baseball culture in the area and will include a talk from current Major Leaguer John McDonald.
Connecticut bicycling organizations, the Connecticut Cycling Advancement Program (CCAP) and Team 26 are partnering to host a cyclocross bicycle event to begin at 9 am on Saturday, December 21, at Fairfield Hills. All ages and skill levels are invited to participate (or spectatoe) in the fun and competitive bicycling event. The course will be held on a two-mile circuit with surfaces ranging from pavement to grassy fields to dirt trails. Cyclocross and mountain bikes without bar-ends are recommended. Helmets are mandatory. Proceeds will support CCAP, an organization that engages and supports youth in cycling; and Team 26, an organization that rides from Sandy Hook to the nation’s capital in support of common sense gun safety legislation.
Given the high volume of swimmers who enter into the campaign already with club team yardage under their belts, Newtown High School boys’ swimming and diving Coach Zach Gauvin has his team training hard in preseason.
High School boys’ basketball team’s chances for success this year. “I’m really excited about what I see from this group of kids,” Tallcouch said as the team practiced in preparation for the December 19 season opener against New Fairfield. The Nighthawks lost a trio of graduates from last year’s team, which posted a 9-14 record, and lost in the South-West Conference quarterfinals and second round of the Class LL state tournament. Tallcouch’s goals are to at least qualify for both the conference and state playoffs, and the coach is optimistic that the returnees have an opportunity to make some noise to go deep in both brackets if they play hard.
Don’t judge the Newtown High School girls’ basketball team by the way things go in the beginning of the season. At least, that’s the message Coach Jeremy O’Connell wants to get across. His Nighthawks lost five seniors, all of whom saw substantial playing time, in the offseason, and the somewhat new-look squad jumps into the proverbial fire with a season opener against Class LL state runner-up Lauralton Hall of Milford, followed by dates with a tough Immaculate of Danbury squad, Class L champion Farmington, a strong Manchester team, and a solid squad from New Jersey as part of a tournament.
Newtown High School’s girls’ and boys’ indoor track teams will lean on the experience and stamina of their distance runners, the development of sprinters, and skill of the throwers as they strive to succeed this winter. Coach Doug Russell has more than 100 competitors in the program and, given the numbers and what he’s seen from returning athletes, the potential is there for the Nighthawks to be strong across the board.
Newtown High School’s wrestling team has a new leader as former Newtown Youth Wrestling Association Coach Chris Bray takes over and is joined by first-year NHS assistant Mike McKeever. “I’m very excited. It’s like I’m regaining my guys,” said Bray, noting that he’s reacquainted with many of his former youth grapplers, some of whom he’s coached for as many as eight years.