Hartford still alive in soccer tourney
By Keith Harrington
The Hartford boys soccer team was feeling a bit disrespected after not earning a top-four seed in the Section II Class D Tournament. Feeling like the game should have been contested on their home pitch, the Tanagers made the trip to Schenectady with a chip on their shoulders.
Fueled by that motivation, five-seed Hartford took command right from the start and blanked four-seed Notre Dame-Bishop Gibbons, 3-0, in the Class D quarterfinals Saturday afternoon. Hartford is the only Adirondack League team still alive in sectional play.
“It feels amazing being the last team alive from the ADK,” said Ray Harrington, one of the Hartford captains. “We knew at the beginning of the season we had a nice shot of making some noise if we all stay together and play like we should.”
Harrington got the Tanagers out to a 1-0 lead in the first half. Nate Fiske skipped a pass off his head to Harrington who distributed the ball in the right-hand corner.
Hartford extended their lead to 2-0 in the 12th minute when Cody Baker served a perfectly placed corner kick into the box that Drake Stewart headed past Notre Dame-Bishop Gibbons goalie Andrew Baaki.
The Tanagers struck again in the 34th minute when Baker fired a shot from 30 yards out that got over the hands of the fully extended Baaki to make it 3-0 at the half.
The defense took over from there. Hartford’s back line and goalie Austin Wells held off the Knights the rest of the way.
Wells recorded the shutout with four saves for Hartford. It was the seventh shutout of the season for Wells and the Tanager defense.
Hartford lost twice to league finalist Fort Ann and once to champion Bolton-Warrensburg, both who have been eliminated from sectional play. Harrington feels that facing some struggles had made the Tanagers stronger.
“We went through some adversity and lost some tough games like to Fort Ann two times, but we stuck with it,” Harrington added. “We got Michael Jones back off injury after being out for two weeks, and with the explosive offense of Mike, Cody Baker and Nate Fiske and backed up by the heads of our defense in Drake Stewart, John Gauthier and Austin Wells, we thought we would be a good match for our first round of sectionals.”
Hartford advances to meet top-seed Northville Wednesday at 7 p.m. at LaSalle.
“We are going to fight to the end against Northville and hope for a good result,” Harrington said.
Hartford is now 11-4 on the season. Notre Dame-Bishop Gibbons ends the season 9-8.
Hartford beats Hadley-Luzerne
By Keith Harrington
Raeghan Liebig led the offensive attack as Hartford swept Hadley-Luzerne 3-0 in an Adirondack League volleyball match last Friday.
Set scores were 25-19, 25-20, 25-11.
Liebig finished with seven kills and 10 digs for the Tanagers. Alawnah Dunda added six kills and two blocks for Hartford.
Jenna Shannon, Jordana Kenney and Riley Daniels served up six points each for the Eagles. Kenny added five kills, five blocks and seven digs, Shannon had five assists and Daniels had four digs and three assists for Hadley-Luzerne.
Hartford improved to 8-6, 10-9. Hadley-Luzerne is 4-10, 4-13.