Hamden tops Westies
WH falls to 1-9 with loss to Green Dragons
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(October 1, 2016) -
 The West Haven volleyball team suffered its fifth straight loss Saturday afternoon, falling to Hamden 3-0. The scores of the match were 25-7, 25-18, and 25-22. 

"We did some good things but we still need to work on making smart decisions on the court," West Haven coach Kate Coldren said after her team fell to 1-9. "Defense has been our strength this season and we struggled with that against a very strong Hamden team. I did see more energy and enthusiasm last night than I've seen all season. We're still waiting for everything and everyone to gel.  In the meantime, we get ready for Law and Mercy this week."
Mariana Kalander led the West Haven offense with six aces and three kills, while Michaela Caprio added two aces, three kills and three digs.















 


The Westies dive to prevent a Hamden point against Hamden, October 1, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske. 

"Mariana (Kalander), Michaela (Caprio), and Veronica (Lynn) all played pretty consistent volleyball," Coldren said. "We struggled to get our offense going tonight, but these girls were able to get a few kills despite that fact. Mariana served very well, Michaela played well all the way around, and Veronica continues to impress me with her aggressive and intelligent play."

















Veronica Lynn (6) goes up for a block against Hamden, October 1, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.

Megan Paterson ran the West Haven offense with 15 assists, while Devin Pascale had five kills. Hailey Parsons and Marilyn Tran each had five digs, while Sam Giaquinto, Pascale and Paterson each had four digs. 


Deep Six
Westies drop sixth straight in loss to Law
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(October 4, 2016) -
 Looking for the light at the end of the tunnel, the West Haven volleyball team is still searching. Tuesday evening in West Haven did not provide any answers.

Struggling to maintain any rhythm, West Haven dropped its sixth straight match with a 3-0 loss against Jonathan Law. The scores of the loss were 25-16, 25-8, 25-21.

















Sam Giaquinto (18) dives to prevent a point against Jonathan Law, October 4, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.

"Defense was very good tonight,  but we had far too many unforced errors at the worst times,"  West Haven coach Kate Coldren said after her team fell to 1-10 with the loss. "We started off really strong and as soon as Law ran a few points on us, we lost all our energy and excitement. We never recovered. We need to stay positive and keep improving."  
The Westies battled in the first game, but unfortunately came up short in a nine-point loss. Law rolled to a big victory in the second game, before West Haven's biggest fight came in the third game. 

The Westies battled throughout, looking to extend the match, but fell in a tough fashion by four points. 
"Sam (Giaquinto) and Hailey (Parsons) played very good defense," Coldren said. "They worked hard to not let a ball drop.  When we were able to get our offense going, we got some solid hits. Marianna (Kalander) is continuing to improve since moving to the outside, and we need to get her the ball as much as possible."

















Alexis Burzynski (10) goes up for the kill ​against Jonathan Law, October 4, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.
Megan  Paterson had a solid game for the Westies with five digs and 15 assists. Hailey Parsons and Sam Giaquinto each played extremely well on defense with Parsons picking up eight digs and Giaquinto finishing with seven digs. 

Marianna Kalander added four kills and three digs, while Devin Pascale had four kills and two digs, and Michaela Caprio added four digs. 


Mercy
WH drops seventh in row in loss to Mercy
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(October 8, 2016) -
The West Haven volleyball team feels it is almost there in terms of getting its next victory in a tough Southern Connecticut Conference, Unfortunately for the Westies, that win did not come  on Saturday as they fell to Mercy 25-21, 25-18, 25-12 at West Haven High.

















Veronica Lynn (6) sets up the West Haven offense against Mercy, October 8, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.
Needing one more win to play in the postseason, West Haven got that victory Saturday evening with a 5-1 victory over Cross/Hillhouse/Career at Ken Strong Stadium in West Haven. 

"It is another tough loss," West Haven coach Kate Coldren said after her team dropped to 1-11. "I saw some positive stuff today, but we definitely let some of our errors get to us. Because we didn't shake off mistakes, things snowballed and it's tough to come back against any of the teams in our conference, especially Mercy.

"I did see some bright moments where we did a much better job of making smart decisions during broken plays. We definitely needed to do a better job getting our offense going. Serve receive was good, but we couldn't get our sets where they needed to be for our hitters to get a good swing."

















Megan Paterson (14) sets up Marianna Kalander (29) against Mercy, October 8, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.

Despite a good effort, the loss was West Haven's seventh in a row. West Haven battled in the first two games, but fell by four and seven points, respectively, before falling by 13 points in the final game. 

"Marianna (Kalander) and Devin (Pascale) led the team with kills and they continue to improve," Coldren said. "Michaela (Caprio) served tough again today and, as a team, we served well."  
Megan Paterson led the West Haven offense with 10 assists, while Michaela Caprio added six aces, and Marianna Kalander had five kills. Devin Pascale added four kills and three aces.


Guilford nips Westies
WH falls to 1-12 with loss
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(October 11, 2016) -
 Despite playing better than it has in recent matches, the West Haven volleyball team just could not get over the hump Tuesday evening. In a hard fought battle, in which the Westies had an opportunity to win three of the four games, West Haven fell on the road against Guilford 3-1. 

With the 20-25, 10-25, 25-23, 18-25 loss, West Haven dropped its eighth straight decision and fell to 1-12 on the season.
"This match was the best we've played in a while," West Haven coach Kate Coldren said. "We played very cohesively and I still see progress with all of the girls. We struggled a bit to get our offense going, but when we did, I saw a total turn around. Defense was again our strongest aspect tonight. Guilford has some tough hitters and we didn't let too many hits get by us. I'm starting to see so much more confidence and that's what I've wanted most from the girls."

The Westies battled from the start, losing the first game by five points, before struggling in the second game. The Westies rebounded to post a victory in the third game and battled in the fourth, but just came up short. 

Megan Paterson led the offense with 23 assists, while Devin Pascale added seven kills and Marianna Kalander had six kills. Veronica Lynn and Morgan Lambert each had four kills in the loss. 

On the defensive side, Danna Tortal led the way with 10 digs. Pascale added nine digs, Sam Giaquinto had eight digs, and Paterson chipped in six digs. 
"Devin (Pascale) played great in the front row and the back row," Coldren said. "Danna (Tortal) and Sam (Giaquinto) played very well in the back row and Marianna (Kalander) was strong at the net."  


Upper Hand
Westies fall to Tigers 3-0
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(October 17, 2016) -
 As the season progresses, so does the West Haven volleyball team. Unfortunately for the Westies, that progression has not shown in the win column. 

Traveling to Madison Monday evening, West Haven fell to Hand 25-14, 25-15, and  25-12 to drop its ninth consecutive match.
"Even though our record doesn't reflect it, we are really playing much better than earlier this season," West Haven coach Kate Coldren said after her team fell to 1-13. "We are playing very cohesively and working well together. There is constant improvement and that's just as important as winning. Tonight we played very strong defensively and serve receive was consistent.  Hitting was good, but we still had some unforced errors at the wrong time. We will continue to work on consistency in the remainder of the games this season."
The Tigers were in control in each game, winning every one by double digits. 

Megan Paterson led the offense with 12 assists, while Devin Pascale had six kills and Marianna Kalander had four kills. 

Defensively, Michaela Caprio led the way with nine digs, while Marianne Loo had seven digs and Pascale six. 
"Devin (Pascale) is really starting to play very controlled volleyball in the front and the back row," Coldren said. "She is playing very calmly and is leading this team by example.  Marianna (Kalander) is continuing to improve in the outside position and is really becoming our go to hitter when she's in the front row. Michaela (Caprio), Danna (Tortal), and Marianne (Loo) controlled the back row tonight and  worked hard to be in position and not let the ball hit the floor."


Westies top Platt Tech
Westies fall to Tigers 3-0
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(October 18, 2016) -
 The West Haven volleyball team can breathe a sigh of relief. The nine match losing streak is over. 

Looking for a much-needed victory, the Westies got that with a 25-13, 25-20, 25-20 decision over Platt Tech Tuesday evening at West Haven High. 

















Devin Pascale (23) sets up the offense as Hailey Parsons (27) and Sam Giaquinto (18) move in against Mercy, October 8, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.
"Tonight was a solid group effort," West Haven coach Kate Coldren said after her team improved to 2-13. "We played relaxed and played our level of volleyball.  We let up a little in the second and third games, and made some mental errors, but we regrouped and finished off the match with a win."

The Westies received solid play across the board and were led by Megan Paterson, who ran the offense with 25 assists. The offense fed off the play of Paterson as Devin Pascale had a big night with 13 kills, Marianna Kalander finished with six kills, and Alexis Burzynski had four kills.  

















Veronica Lynn with a dig against Mercy, October 8, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.

"All of our hitters played very smart tonight and found the open spots on the court," Coldren said. "Devin (Pascale), Marianna (Kalander), Lexi (Burzynski), and Lauren (Kenney) controlled the net and Megan Paterson did a great job getting them the ball."

The Westies also served well with Pascale finishing with six aces. Sam Giaquinto had four aces and Veronica Lynn chipped in three aces.  
Giaquinto led the way on defense with three digs, while Lynn had two blocks for West Haven. 


Two in a Row
Westies remain on winning track
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(October 19, 2016)
 - With a long season coming to a close, the West Haven volleyball team is seeing progression. That progression continued Wednesday evening as the Westies blanked Career 2
5-15, 25-17, 25-17.
Megan Paterson ran the offense with 15 assists, while Marianna Kalander had seven kills. 

















Megan Paterson (14) against Career, October 19, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.
"Tonight was  a pretty good game for us," West Haven coach Kate Coldren said after her team won its second straight to improve to 3-13. "It was very similar to last night. I'm impressed that we came out ready to go from the very first serve, especially because this was our third match in a row. If they were tired, I couldn't tell. We had a few too many unforced errors for my liking, but they put it all together when we needed it. We had some very tough serving tonight and some solid hitting. Hopefully, we can keep things going for the last four games of the season."

















Sam Giaquinto (18) against Career, October 19, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.
The Westies rolled out to an easy victory in the first game, winning by ten points, before winning by eight points in the final eight games.
"It was a solid effort from everyone," Coldren said. "It's so great to see everyone on my roster get playing time, and get in there and do their job. We played our level of volleyball and kept things as smooth and consistent as possible. Marianna (Kalander) did very well again at the net and her serve was on point."  

Kalander also added five aces, Michaela Caprio, Devin Pascale, Morgan Lambert and Alexis Burzynski each had three kills, while Pascale also added three aces. 


On a Roll
Westies win third in a row
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(October 21, 2016)
 - As the regular season comes to a close, the West Haven volleyball team seems to be finding its groove. Battling throughout a hard fought match, the Westies defeated North Haven 3-1 at West Haven High Friday evening.  

West Haven worked together to pick up its third straight victory by scores of 25-14, 25-20, 20-25, and 25-21.

















Marilyn Tran (25), Danna Tortal (21) and the Westies celebrate a point against North Haven, October 21, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.
"This was such a great win," West Haven coach Kate Coldren said after her team improved to 4-13. " Despite our record, these girls are still working hard and doing their very best. They played with pride tonight and did it together. I couldn't be more proud of them. The back row hustled, made adjustments quickly and stayed positive. The front row made smart decisions and executed attacks very well."  
Megan Paterson was one of the keys to the victory as she ran the offense with 17 assists and was strong on defense with 10 digs. 

Devin Pascale also had another solid match with 11 kills, five aces and three digs, while Danna Tortal played well on defense with nine digs, and Sam Giaquinto had seven digs. 

















Alexis Burzynski (c.) and Marianna Kalander (29) keep the ball in play against North Haven, October 21, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske. 
"Once again, Marianna (Kalander) and Devin (Pascale) dominated the net," Coldren said. "Michaela (Caprio), Lexi (Burzynski) and Veronica (Lynn) also made big contributions to our offense. Sam (Giaquinto), Danna (Tortal), Meg (Paterson), and Marilyn (Tran) handled the back row on defense and serve receive. They were confident and got the job done."

Michaela Caprio served well with six aces, Marilyn Tran had five digs and Alexis Burzynski added four kills. 


Streak Over
Westies fall to Lyman Hall 
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(October 24, 2016)
 - The late season run for the West Haven volleyball team hit a bump in the road Monday evening. Looking to win their fourth straight contest, the Westies were defeated by Lyman Hall in Wallingford, 3-2.

With the 21-25, 28-26, 18-25, 25-14, 13-15 loss, West Haven fell to 4-14 on the season. 

















Megan Paterson (14) and the Westies fell to Lyman Hall, October 24, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.

"Tonight was a tough loss," West Haven coach Kate Coldren said. "We started out a little flat in each set and had to come from behind every time. They fought hard, but fell short with some poorly timed unforced errors. Other than that, I felt that we played very well. These girls really stepped up for each other tonight. When someone was struggling, someone else stepped up and they never quit. It's great to see the fight in them."
Megan Paterson once again ran the offense in fine fashion with 22 assists and four aces, while Marianna Kalander was the beneficiary with 13 kills.

Devin Pascale also played well offensively with eight aces and seven kills. Michaela Caprio chipped in six kills and Alexis Burzynski had five kills.

















Michaela Caprio goes for the kill against Lyman Hall, October 24, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.
"Meg (Gallipoli) and Sam (Giaquinto) played very well in the back row," Coldren said. "They were vocal and disciplined on defense. Marianna (Kalander), Devin (Pascale), and Michaela (Caprio) controlled the net and Meg (Paterson) did a great job getting them the ball. I see steady improvement and that is all I can ask for at this point in the season."

Meghan Gallipoli was a force on defense with 15 digs, while Danna Tortal and Sam Giaquinto each had nine digs, Pascale added seven digs and Paterson also had six digs for West Haven.  


Blanked
Westies fall to SHA
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(October 26, 2016) -
 In the last handful of contests, the West Haven girls volleyball team has played its best volleyball of the season. Looking to continue that trend Wednesday evening against Sacred Heart Academy, the Westies were unable to do so. 

Falling behind early, West Haven never recovered in a 3-0 loss to the Sharks. The scores of the match were 25-8, 25-20, and 25-18.   

















Devin Pascale (23) goes up for the kill as Alexis Burzynski (10) and Megan Paterson (14) prepare to help against Sacred Heart Academy, October 26, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.  
"Our biggest problem tonight was hitting errors," West Haven coach Kate Coldren said after her team fell to 4-15 on the year. "We definitely played flat and you can't do that against a team like Sacred Heart. We started to fight  back but it wasn't enough in the end. We made some really great defensive plays and couldn't finish. One thing I will say about this team is they don't ever quit. They will never go down without a fight. We have one more game left against Cross and we will definitely be ready."

















Marianna Kalander (29) looks to get a point as her teammates look on against Sacred Heart Academy, October 26, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.

The Westies received a solid all around effort from Megan Paterson and Devin Pascale as Paterson finished with 11 digs and nine assists, while Pascale had 10 digs on the defensive side. 
"Defensively, we played well as a team," Coldren said. "Meg Paterson had a solid game and made very smart decisions.  She has continued to improve this entire season."

Sam Giaquinto finished with eight digs, Marianna Kalander had seven kills, and Marilyn Tran had five digs in the loss.


Perfect Ending
Westies top Cross on Senior Night
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(October 27, 2016) -
 The season could not have ended any better for West Haven coach Kate Coldren and her West Haven volleyball team. Looking to send the seniors out in style and also with the chance to derail the playoff hopes of Wilbur Cross, the Westies did both Thursday evening. 

Playing a solid match from start to finish, West Haven topped Cross 3-1 at West Haven High. The scores of the match were 25-16, 16-25, 25-17, and 25-23.

















Meghan Gallipoli (19), Marilyn Tran (25) and Michaela Caprio (13) celebrate a point against Wilbur Cross on Senior Night, October 27, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.
"It is such a great way to end the season," Coldren said after her team finished the season 5-15. "We obviously aren't where we wanted to be at this point, but these girls have continued to improve and pull out some great wins and that's really all I can ask for as a coach. They are an amazing group of girls and I'm so proud of their hard work and progress throughout this season!  I want to say congratulations to the seniors and thank them for their commitment to this program. They will be greatly missed!"

As has been the case all year, the Westies fought the entire match. After both teams split the first two games, West Haven would win the match by taking home the final two games in impressive style, including a hard fought win in the final game. 

















Veronica Lynn (6) goes up for the kill while Marianna Kalander (29) moves in against Wilbur Cross on Senior Night, October 27, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.

"The girls came to play tonight and they got a great win together," Coldren said. "Everyone knew what they needed to do and stepped up to get it done. Defense has been our strength this season and tonight was no different. We seemed to really frustrate Cross' hitters and forced them to make errors. We also had some very strong serving tonight and finished the game with 21 aces. Sam (Giaquinto), Devin (Pascale), and Michaela (Caprio) did a phenomenal job in the back row, and Morgan (Lambert), Marianna (Kalander), and Lexi (Burzynski) were strong at the net."

Megan Paterson ran the offense with 11 assists, while also adding four aces. Marianna Kalander had five aces and four kills, Michaela Caprio and Devin Pascale each had four aces, while Alexis Burzynski chipped in four kills on the offensive side. 

Defensively, senior Sam Giaquinto led the way with 16 digs, while Pascale added 10 digs. Caprio had seven digs, Marilyn Tran had five digs and Meghan Gallipoli had four digs.  

VOLLEYBALL 2016



Megan Paterson (14) sets up the offense with Devin Pascale (l.) and Michaela Caprio (13) looking on against Wilbur Cross, October 27, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.

Meghan Gallipoli with a dig against Wilbur Cross, October 27, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.

Marianna Kalander (29) goes up for a block against Wilbur Cross, October 27, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.

WestieBlue

New Season
Westies looking for success with plenty of new faces
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(August 15, 2016) -
 Losing plenty of experience from last season's 16-8 squad, West Haven coach Kate Coldren is cautiously optimistic as the 2016 season approaches. Coldren has reason for optimism.

With a fresh mix of youth coupled with some experience from last season's successful squad, the Westies are looking to have another solid season. 

Seniors Samantha Giaquinto (defensive specialist) and Mariana Kalander (middle hitter) are expected to lead the way in 2016.



























Samantha Giaquinto (2) and the Westies are looking for a solid season in 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.  

Kalander and Giaquinto, along with senior outside hitter Devin Pascale will lead the group as captains of the team. 

"Mariana (Kalander) has really stepped up," Coldren said. "She played last year and having her experience in the middle is a no-brainer. She is the tallest person on the team. We have a very small lineup. She will be an important part of our offense. Sam (Giaquinto) can play all around. She has varsity experience. Devin (Pascale) was our backup setter last year. She is a very strong hitter.

"The three of them together are a good fit. Together, they lead well."

Coldren also has several key players returning. Seniors Meghan Gallipoli, Jessica Taylor, a transfer from Hamden,  and Marilyn Tran are defensive specialists, while Michaela Caprio is an outside hitter. Junior Lexi Burzynski is a middle hitter and junior Megan Paterson is the team's setter.

"Megan (Paterson) is very smart and picks things up quickly," Coldren said. "Meghan (Gallipoli) and Marilyn (Tran) have stepped it up defensively and Jessica (Taylor) is a very good defensive player. She is very smart. Lexi (Burzynski) has really stepped it up for us also."

If the Westies are to be successful, they will need to run their offense through Paterson. Getting the ball to the junior is imperative for the Westies to get back to the postseason. 

"As long as we get the passes to our setter and run our offense, we will be okay," Coldren said. "A lot of girls played winter ball and it has shown in how hard they have worked. They have a positive attitude and they get along well. They want to win. They are not just here to have fun. They want to win.

"We have to get our middles the ball. We have to be consistent. We are a relatively new team. We do not have a lot of returning starters. We need to stay cool and calm. We can't get frazzled."

While the Westies will have to replace the graduated Stefania Vendrella, Amanda DiLeonardo and Sarah Dunham, the goals remain the same for Coldren and her crew. 

"The goals are the same as last year," Coldren said. "We want to make the postseason. If we work hard, we can do it. That is definitely what the girls were told from day one. I want them to build off what we did last year. We will try to always do that. We have a group of girls that want to do that."

​West Haven opens the season Monday, September 12 at Hamden at 5:30 p.m. The Westies play their first home game Monday, September 19 against Guilford at 5:15 p.m.


New Season
Westies looking for success with plenty of new faces
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(September 12, 2016) -
 The start to the 2016 volleyball season did not exactly go as West Haven coach Kate Coldren had hoped. Despite plenty of new faces in starting roles, Coldren expected her team to have a solid season. 

The Westies traveled to Hamden to open the 2016 season and dropped a 3-0 decision to the Green Dragons. Hamden won by scores of 25-21, 25-21, and 25-14. 

​"Overall, our performance was mediocre," Coldren said. "Our defense and passing were good, but we had a lot of trouble finishing a play. The hitters were tentative and hesitated getting to the ball.  There wasn't enough enthusiasm when they made great plays, and there was a very clear lack of communication on the court.  I will always be disappointed with a loss when I feel they could've played better and won the match.  And that was definitely the case.  We had far too many unforced errors.  The good news is we have 19 more games to learn from our mistakes, and it starts with Law on Wednesday."

The Westies had opportunities to win the first two games, but were hurt by unforced errors. Those errors built up and allowed Hamden to take the lead in each game and eventually win both. 

The 2-0 deficit in games was too much to overcome and Hamden controlled the third game to win by 11 points. 

















Mariana Kalander (29) goes for the kill as Sam Giaquinto (18) looks on in West Haven's season opener against Hamden, September 12, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske. 

Mariana Kalander led the Westies with six kills and two digs, while Devin Pascale added six digs and three kills.

















Devin Pascale (c.), Jessica Taylor (5) and Sam Giaquinto (18) battle for a point in West Haven's season opener against Hamden, September 12, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.

"Devin (Pascale), Marilyn (Tran), Jessica (Taylor), and Marianne (Loo) all played well in the back row and that is going to be key this season," Coldren said. "Marianna (Kalander) did well in the front row.  She made some smart plays and we need to feed her the ball more often."
















Megan Paterson (14) looks to set up Alexis Burzynski (r.) in West Haven's season opener against Hamden, September 12, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.   

Megan Paterson added 10 assists and three digs, while Marilyn Tran and Marianne Loo each had five digs.  


Law blanks Westies
WH falls to 0-2 with loss
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(September 14, 2016) -
 West Haven coach Kate Coldren was hoping for a better performance in her team's second match of the season. Coldren did not get what she expected.

Plagued by the same mistakes which hurt the team in the season opener against Hamden, the Westies never got in a rhythm, falling in Milford to Jonathan Law, 3-0 Wednesday evening. The scores of the match were 25-21, 25-14, 25-20.

















​Megan Paterson (14), Michaela Caprio (13) and the Westies, seen here against Hamden, fell to Jonathan Law, September 14, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske. 

"We had the same issues we had against Hamden," Coldren said after her team fell to 0-2. "There was a lack of communication and energy, and the inability to finish plays. Hitters weren't able to put the ball down and we made too many unforced errors.  Passing and defense were consistent, but it is tough to win without big hits and blocks."

Megan Paterson ran the West Haven offense with 11 assists, while Devin Pascale and Jessica Taylor came up big on the defensive end with eight digs apiece. 

"Meg Paterson played very well tonight," Coldren said. "She is working extremely hard to run our offense. Jess (Taylor) and Devin (Pascale) did a great job in the back row and are reading the opposing hitters very well."  

















The West Haven coaching staff, seen here against Hamden, watched as the Westies fell to Jonathan Law, September 14, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.
Sam Giaquinto had four digs and two aces, and Pascale added three kills along with Alexis Burzynski and Michaela Caprio. Paterson, Marianne Loo, and Marilyn Tran each had three digs. 
"We need to recover quickly and get ready for our next match against Mercy," Coldren said. "We most certainly know what we need to work on. Hopefully, we can put all the pieces together and get our first win."

Blanked Again
Westies looking for first win of the season
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(September 16, 2016) -
Just three matches into the regular season, the West Haven volleyball team is still searching for its first win. Not only are the Westies looking for that opening victory in match play, they are also looking to win their first game. 

Traveling to Middletown to play Mercy, the Westies were blanked again, falling to the Tigers 3-0. The scores of the match were 25-15, 25-21, 25-21.

















Megan Paterson (14) sets up the West Haven offense against Mercy, September 16,2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.

"Although this was our third loss in a row, I saw some very positive things happening on the court," West Haven coach Kate Coldren said. "There was a lot more fight in the way we played.  I heard a lot more communication and the girls looked more cohesive then I've seen them yet this season. We are definitely making progress but there is plenty more work to do. One of our biggest problems tonight was letting Mercy run too many points in a row. They had some strong servers and we didn't get them off the line fast enough. We also struggled with blocking, which makes our defense have to work hard."  

Megan Paterson ran the West Haven offense with 16 assists, while Marianna Kalander finished with six kills.

On the defensive side, Devin Pascale led the way with seven digs, Michaela Caprio, Marilyn Tran, and Sam Giaquinto each had four digs, and Paterson, Kalander, and Marianne Loo each had three digs. 

















Michaela Caprio (13) goes for a kill with Marianna Kalander (29) and Marilyn Tran (25) looking on against Mercy, September 16, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.

"Our offense was much more consistent tonight," Coldren said. "Our defense hustled and kept us in the game. Marianna (Kalander), Sam (Giaquinto), and Veronica (Lynn) did a good job mixing up their hits and scoring us some much needed points and confidence. Devin (Pascale) played very well in the back row. She is steadily improving, reading hitters so she is in the correct spot to get the ball up. As long as the girls continue to put in hard work at practice and stay focused, we will be successful."
Giaquinto also added five kills, while Alexis Burzynski had three kills in the loss.

Guilford tops Westies
Westies open with fourth straight defeat
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(September 19, 2016) - 
The West Haven girls volleyball team did not envision starting the season in a slump. Four matches in, and that is exactly where the Westies are.

Looking to pick up their first victory in both games and matches this season, the Westies were denied in each, falling to Guilford 16-25, 4-25, and 13-25 Monday evening at West Haven High. 
"Tonight was a frustrating loss because I know we can do better," West Haven coach Kate Coldren said after her team fell to 0-4. "We are really struggling to shake off mistakes and stay focused on the task at hand.  We are going point for point with these teams and as soon as we make a couple errors, we fold. We have to keep fighting because these teams aren't going to hand us the game. I'm hopeful that we can and will turn things around."

The Westies were in the contest in the first game as they battled throughout, before a couple of runs by the Indians ended the opening game in disappointing style for the Westies. 

West Haven was drubbed in the second game, with Guilford winning 25 of 29 points. Guilford pulled away in the third game to win by 12 points. 

Marianne Loo led West Haven with six digs, while Devin Pascale had two kills and three digs. Megan Paterson ran the offense with five assists. Michaela Caprio finished with three digs, while Marianna Kalander and Sam Giaquinto each added a pair of digs in the loss. 

First of the Year
Westies top Career for initial win of season
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(September 21, 2016) -
Having lost its first four matches of the season, the West Haven volleyball team was desperately looking for its initial victory. Playing with added urgency, the Westies finally picked up that initial victory Wednesday evening, defeating Career 25-6, 25-10 and, 25-15 in New Haven.

The win was not only West Haven's first in terms of matches, it also marked the first games won by the Westies this campaign. 

















Michaela Caprio , seen here against Mercy, helped the Westies pick up their first win of the season against Career, September 21, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.

"Tonight was a solid team effort and we got that much needed first win," West Haven coach Kate Coldren said after her team improved to 1-4. "I truly believe this will turn some things around for us. We played our game and had fun. Serving and hitting was much more consistent and we played with confidence. Sam (Giaquinto), Devin (Pascale) and Marianna (Kalander) led the way with their strong serves and smart hitting.  And Lexi (Burzynski) did some good things at the net as well. Now we prepare for Hand on Saturday."

Marianna Kalander led the West Haven offense with eight aces and five kills, while Devin Pascale was also strong with six aces and six kills. Megan Paterson ran the offense with nine assists and Sam Giaquinto had five aces. 

Defensively, Michaela Caprio, and Jessica Taylor each had three digs, while Kalander, Giaquinto and Marianne Loo. each had a pair of digs.

The Westies opened the match in impressive style, holding Career to just six points in the opening game. Winning the first game of the season got West Haven going as the team again held Career to just 10 points in winning the second game by 15 points.  

Hands blanks Westies
Mistakes hurt  in 3-0 loss
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(September 4, 2016) -
 After posting its first win of the season earlier in the week, the West Haven volleyball team hoped to repeat the performance Saturday afternoon against Hand of Madison. 

That energy never followed. Unable to put any runs together, the Westies fell to the Tigers 3-0 at West Haven High. The scores of the match were 25-16, 25-17, and 25-15.
"The biggest problem today was that we got ourselves in a big hole in each game and had a hard time getting out of them," West Haven coach Kate Coldren said after her team fell to 1-5. "We can't spot a team ten points and expect to come back and win. We struggled with serve receive, so we couldn't get our offense going.  And when we did get passes, we struggled to put the ball away. The good news from today is that we are really starting to play together as a team. Defense worked hard and made some great plays. Hopefully, we can put it all together for Monday's game against North Haven."

After falling in the first game, West Haven needed a quick start in the second. Instead, Hand scored the first seven points of the second game, then went on another roll after West Haven got within 7-4. Hand's win in the second game was never in question as the Tigers took a 2-0 lead. 
"Marianna (Kalander) and Lexi (Burzynski) played well at the net," Coldren said. "They are really starting to get their timing down on their blocks and they're adjusting their hits to Megan's (Paterson) sets. "Michaela (Caprio), Sam (Giaquinto) and Devin (Pascale) played great in the back row.  They were where they needed to be on defense and read their hitters very well."

The Tigers controlled the third game and pulled away to win by 10 points, sending the Westies to their fifth loss of the season. 

Megan Paterson led the West Haven offense with 13 assists. Michaela Caprio and Devin Pascale had solid defensive efforts with nine digs apiece, while Sam Giaquinto added eight digs. Pascale also had six kills, while Alexis Burzynski and Marianna Kalander each had four kills.













 

Michaela Caprio with an ace against Hand, September 24, 2016. Video courtesy of Mike Madera.















West Haven wins the point after a long rally against Hand, September 24, 2016. Video courtesy of Mike Madera.


North Haven tops Westies
WH falls to 1-6 with loss to Indians

By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(September 26, 2016) -
West Haven coach Kate Coldren is seeing plenty of fight in her team. Unfortunately, for Coldren and the Westies, that fight is not necessarily translating into victories. 

Plying hard to the last point, West Haven came up just short in a 25-17, 27-25, 26-24 loss at North Haven Monday evening. 

"I saw a lot of positive things tonight," Coldren said after her team fell to 1-6. "All the games were very close. They never gave up. They came up with some great digs and some smart plays. The girls worked hard but unfortunately had quite a few unforced errors." 

West Haven battled from the start, but came up just short in losing by eight points in the opening game. The second game was a back and forth battle, but the Westies just did not have enough to pull out the win. 

















Sam Giaquinto (18) with a dig against North Haven, September 26, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.

"They fought point for point with North Haven, but struggled to finish," Coldren said. "This seems to be our biggest problem this season. We're still trying to find that go to hitter that will step up and get us those big points. In the meantime, we'll keep working hard and hopefully things will fall into place and we can pick up some critical wins."
The third game was much of the same for the Westies as they battled from start to finish, but could not put the Indians away. 

Megan Paterson ran the West Haven offense with 11 assists, while Devin Pascale had six kills and Sam Giaquinto had five kills. Veronica Lynn chipped in four kills in the defeat. 

















West Haven celebrates a point against North Haven, September 26, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.

"Devin (Pascale) and Sam (Giaquinto) both played very well on both offense and defense," Coldren said. "They are really starting to find a rhythm and I hope it continues and others follow their lead."

Defensively, the Westies were led by Giaquinto, who had a team-leading nine digs. Marianne Kalander had seven digs, Michaela Caprio added six digs, Pascale had five digs, and Alexis Burzynski added four blocks. 


Getting Closer
Westies fall to Lyman Hall in hard fought match
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(September 28, 2016) -
 Despite losing its third consecutive match, the West Haven volleyball team is making strides in the right direction. Although the Westies fell to Lyman Hall Wednesday evening, more of those strides were taken in a 25-21, 25-19, 15-25, 30-28 defeat.

"Tonight was definitely a battle," West Haven coach Kate Coldren said after her team fell to 1-7 on the year. "I saw some fight in them in games three and four. I'm beyond proud of the fight and heart they played with tonight. We are making progress and I'm positive that we will get over that hump for the second half of the season. We just need to keep our heads up and keeping working hard."

Megan Paterson led the offense in impressive style with 24 assists, while Devin Pascale had 13 kills, Michaela Caprio had nine aces, and Marianna Kalander added nine kills.
Defensively, the Westies were led by Sam Giaquinto with seven digs. Caprio added six digs, Pascale, Marilyn Tran and Marianne Loo each had five digs, and Marianna Kalander had four digs. 
"Michaela (Caprio) really came through for us on the service line and playing defense," Coldren said. "She had some great runs that kept us in the match. Devin (Pascale) and Marianna (Kalander) had a rough start at the net, but they pulled it together and made some extremely smart plays. They recovered and stepped up like senior captains should. Sam (Giaquinto) and Veronica (Lynn) made a huge impact on this game. Sam in the  back row on serve receive/defense, and Veronica (4 kills) was fearless at the net."

All three losses in the match were close, but the Westies could not deliver the knockout blow. As a result, Lyman Hall won the first game by four points, the second game by six points and the fourth game by two points.

The Westies won the third game by a commanding 10 points. 


Slumping
Westies suffer fourth straight loss against SHA
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(September 29, 2016) -
 The West Haven volleyball team continues to struggle. With its first fourth straight defeat, the Westies fell to 1-8 on the season. 

Thursday evening's defeat was one which came in disappointing fashion as coach Kate Coldren felt her team had made strides in the right direction in its last contest against Lyman Hall. 

All that went away against the Pacers as Sacred Heart posted a 25-18, 25-13, 25-11 victory. 

















Michaela Caprio (c.) with a dig as Megan Paterson (14) looks on against Sacred Heart Academy, September 29, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske. 
"Tonight was frustrating," Coldren said. "We couldn't get our offense going at all. The passing was there, but our hitters weren't finishing and we had far too many errors. We have to step our game up in order to get some wins. We can't settle for mediocre. With the second half of our schedule starting as of Saturday against Hamden, it's crunch time."

















Alexis Burzynski goes up for the kill against Sacred Heart Academy, September 29, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.

The Westies struggled from the start, losing the opening game by seven points, and the second by 12. The Pacers cruised to a 14 point victory in the final game. 

Megan Paterson ran the offense with 14 assists, while Devin Pascale had six kills. Michaela Caprio chipped in four kills on the offensive side. 

Defensively, the Westies were led by Caprio with four digs and Meghan Gallipoli with three digs 

Megan Paterson (14) sets up the West Haven offense against Wilbur Cross, October 27, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.

West Haven seniors before their game against Wilbur Cross, October 27, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.

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West Haven celebrates a point against Sacred Heart Academy, October 26, 2016. Photo courtesy of Todd Dandelske.

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