Overtime Winner

WH/SHA tops Hamden 2-1
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(January 24, 2024)
 – Searching for a much-needed victory, the West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy girls hockey team received one. In a hard-fought contest, the Westie Sharks used a last-minute goal by Julianna Montano to defeat rival Hamden 2-1 in Hamden Wednesday afternoon.
The victory was a big one for the Westie Sharks as the team improved to 6-7 on the year.
With the game even at one and the final seconds ticking away in overtime, Montano took a pass from Taylor Alfano and scored from the point for the game-winner.
The goal capped a thrilling game which also saw Juliana Gonzalez score at the 14:56 mark of the second period off another assist from Alfano.

Evelyn Twarowski made 26 saves in the win, including seven in overtime.


Blanked
WH/SHA falls to East Catholic
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(January 27, 2024)
 – The West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy girls hockey team fell to 6-8 with a 7-0 loss against East Catholic Saturday afternoon at the Edward L. Bennett Rink in West Haven.
The Westie Sharks could not get going offensively and East Catholic led 2-0 after one period and 4-0 after two periods of play. Evelyn Twarowski made 15 saves in the first two periods, while Megan Losito made 12 saves in the final period.


Heartbreaker
WH/SHA falls in thriller
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(January 30, 2024)
 – Looking to get on a roll for the postseason, the West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy girls hockey team could not do so and fell to Stamford/Westhill/Staples 3-1 at West Haven Tuesday evening.
Trailing 1-0, the Westie Sharks scored their lone goal of the contest at the 4:47 mark of the second period when Ashley Welch found the back of the net off assists from Geena Montano and Julianna Montano.
Despite 21 saves from Evelyn Twarowski, the Westie Sharks fell when Stamford/Westhill/Staples scored twice in the final two minutes, including the go-ahead goal with 1:19 to go.


Skid Over
WH/SHA tops Ridgefield
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(February 1, 2024)
 – The West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy girls hockey team snapped its two-game skid with a 4-3 victory at Ridgefield Thursday afternoon. With the victory, the Westie Sharks improved to 7-9 on the year.
Olivia Twarowski and Juliana Gonzalez led the Westies with a goal and an assist apiece. Megan Losito made 17 saves in the win, including seven in each of the last two periods.
Trailing 1-0 in the second period, the Westie Sharks evened the contest 1:55 in when Olivia Twarowski scored off assists from Juliana Gonzalez and Heather Fonda. West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy took a 2-1 lead less than a minute later when Taylor Alfano scored off an assist from Ashley Welch.
With the game even at two, Alina Lipinsky gave West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy a 3-2 advantage off assists from Hailey Azzarone and Olivia Twarowski. Just 42 seconds later, the Westie Sharks had a 4-2 lead when Gonzalez scored off assists from Azzarone and Welch.

Ridgefield got within 4-3 before the period ended, but neither team scored in the third as the Westie Sharks picked up their seventh win of the season.


Hand tops Westie Sharks
WH/SHA falls 3-2
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(February 3, 2024) 
– Despite overcoming a two-goal deficit, the West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy girls hockey team fell to Hand 3-2 Saturday afternoon at the Edward L. Bennett Rink in West Haven.
Evelyn Twarowski made 30 saves in the loss as the Westie Sharks fell behind early, and they could not get the late score to even the contest.
Trailing 2-0 in the second period, the Westie Sharks scored twice in one minute to even the contest. Julianna Montano scored with 8:45 left in the middle period on a penalty shot, and Ashley Welch scored off an assist from Hailey Azzarone to even the game at two.

Hand answered with the eventual winning goal with 5:12 remaining as West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy fell to 7-10 on the year.


Hamden stuns Westie Sharks
WH/SHA falls with 0.1 seconds left in OT
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(February 10, 2024)
 – The West Haven / Sacred Heart Academy girls hockey team dropped its third game in a row and fifth in six games with a crushing 2-1 overtime loss against Hamden Saturday afternoon at the Edward L. Bennett Rink in West Haven Saturday afternoon.
After the Westie Sharks evened the game with 5:19 remaining in regulation on a wrist shot by Geena Montano, Montano had another opportunity, but was denied in the final two minutes.
Looking to leave the game with a tie, the game turned when Hamden’s Raquel Garcia scored with 0.1 seconds remaining in overtime for the game-winner.
Evelyn Twarowski made 35 saves in the loss, including 15 combined in the third period and overtime.
Taylor Alfano had an opportunity to put the Westie Sharks up 1-0 four minutes into the second, Geena Montano was stopped one minute later, and Juliana Gonzalez was denied from the right wing with 3:22 left in the second.

Julianna Montano was turned aside from the faceoff circle with a glove save four minutes into the third as was Heather Fonda with 2:07 left in the third.


On to the SCC Semifinals
Harrison's winner in double OT lifts WH/SHA
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(February 19, 2024)
 – The West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy girls hockey team is moving on to the Southern Connecticut Conference semifinals.
Behind Rachel Harrison’s goal 51 seconds into the second overtime, the fourth-seeded Westie Sharks defeated fifth-seeded SW United 3-2 at the Edward L. Bennett Rink Monday afternoon. West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy advanced to the semifinals against Amity/North Haven/Cheshire.
Harrison’s goal sealed a dramatic victory which saw goaltender Evelyn Twarowski finish with 29 saves, including nine in the first overtime. Twarowski finished with 29 saves in the win.
The Westie Sharks jumped out to a 1-0 lead with 9:20 left in the first period as Ashley Welch tipped in a Taylor Alfano shot. Delia Vital also picked up an assist on the goal.
With the game even at one, West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy had a golden opportunity to take the lead, but Juliana Gonzalez was denied in front with 3:18 left in the first period.
The second period was scoreless, but the Westie Sharks had scoring opportunities. Welch’s backhander in front was stopped, before a blast by Julianna Montano from the point 4;29 in was also turned away.
Julianna Montano gave the Westie Sharks a 2-1 lead with 7:19 left in the third period, but SW United forced overtime with a goal with 2:01 remaining in regulation.

The Westie Sharks had the better of the scoring opportunities in the first overtime as Alfano was denied 5:54 in, Julianna Montano was stopped along with the rebound by Hailey Azzarone with 8:50 remaining, and Alfano was turned aside again with another blast from the point with 4:39 to go.


Finals Bound
Azzarone's late goal sends WH/SHA to SCC finals
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(February 21, 2024)
 – The West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy girls hockey team knew the stakes at hand. Win in the Southern Connecticut Conference semifinals or the season was over.
Not qualifying for the state tournament, the Westie Sharks were playing with a win or go home mentality. They were not going to go home.
Hailey Azzarone’s goal with 3:17 left in regulation off an assist from Julianna Montano sent the Westie Sharks to a 2-1 victory over top-seeded Amity/North Haven/Cheshire in the SCC semifinals at Hamden.
No. 4 West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy advances to Friday evening’s title game against No. 3 Hamden at the Edward L. Bennett Rink in West Haven.
Azzarone’s goal capped a solid game for West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy. Evelyn Twarowski made 28 saves, including 11 in the final period when the Westie Sharks were outshot 11-6.
West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy took a 1-0 lead in the first period when Heather Fonda scored off assists from Juliana Gonzalez and Ashley Welch at the 6:43 mark.

Amity/North Haven/Cheshire evened the game in the second period, before Azzarone’s third period heroics sealed the victory.


WH/SHA falls in Finals
Hamden posts 3-1 championship victory
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(February 23, 2024)
 – TThere are times in a championship game that go down as defining moments. For the Hamden girls hockey team, they found that moment late in the second period.
Lexy Patel’s short-handed goal broke a tie and helped lead the Green Dragons to a 3-1 victory over West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy in the Southern Connecticut Conference championship at the Edward L. Bennett Rink in West Haven Friday evening.
Hamden won its first SCC title and avenged a double overtime loss to the Westie Sharks from one year ago. West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy had defeated Hamden twice before in league championship contests.
“We have played well on the penalty kill all season,” Hamden coach Jessica Morgillo said after her team improved to 14-8-1. “We played better sometimes on there than the power play. Those short-handed goals change the momentum really quick.
“This means everything. Especially last year, we lost in double overtime to them. To be back here and win against them was a good revenge. I am so proud of them.”
The second period saw the turning point of the game as the Westie Sharks went to the power play with the game even at one and a chance to take the lead in the final five minutes of the period.
Starting to take control of the game in the period, West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy saw an errant pass lead to a Hamden breakaway.
Evelyn Twarowski made the initial stop on a shot by Giada Broccoli, but Patel was there for the rebound and a 2-1 Hamden lead with 4:32 left in the middle period.
“Lexy coming behind me and getting the rebound, we have been working on that in practice,” Broccoli said. “We executed it, and we scored.”
Patel’s goal held up as Hamden freshman goaltender Kyra Sweeney turned aside 29 shots, including 13 in the second and 10 in a thrilling third period.
Despite taking a pair of penalties in the final 15 minutes, West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy put the pressure on Sweeney, but Sweeney was at her best, turning aside Julianna Montano from the slot with 8:27 remaining.
Sweeney held off the Westie Sharks in the final five minutes, turning aside Julianna Montano again with 4:14 to go, then denying a laser from the point by Taylor Alfano with 3:58 to go.
“Honestly, I couldn’t have done it without my team with the constant forecheck and communication,” Sweeney said. “It really helped. Once we got up, I was like I can’t lose now. I have to keep going.”
Hamden then clinched the championship with 42.4 seconds to go when Jozie Becker scored off an assist from Broccoli for the 3-1 advantage.
“We knew it was going to be a tough game especially after last year’s championship,” West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy coach Erin Blake said after her team finished the season 10-13. “Jess (Morgillo) has a fantastic team. They have such strong lines. They had the momentum. We had the chances, but we couldn’t finish.
“I am extremely proud of my team. We fought hard. To be the number four seed and come here again this season, win or lose, is an honor. I am proud of them for making it here.”
The Westie Sharks evened the game and stole the momentum of the second period when Alfano took a pass from Hailey Azzarone and one-timed a shot past Sweeney for a power play goal with 4:18 left in the second period.
Sweeney had come up big earlier in the period when she denied Julianna Montano’s blast with a blocker save with 7:40 to go, then turned away Geena Montano in front seconds later as West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy held a 14-11 shot advantage in the period.
“Kyra has been great all year,” Morgillo said of Sweeney. “I think she is the best goalie in the state. She is the reason we are here right now. She played great today.”
The Green Dragons controlled play for the majority of the opening period, holding a 9-6 shot advantage. Twarowski made several big saves in the opening period for the Westie Sharks, but Broccoli was able to give Hamden a 1-0 advantage when she beat Twarowski 3:16 into the first period.
“Scoring first really pumped us up,” Broccoli said. “I took the puck wide, cut to the middle and I shot it, and it just went in. It really pumped us up and got us going.”
When the Westie Sharks did put shots on goal, Sweeney denied Alina Lipinsky on a partial break down the left wing with 3:17 left in the period, and also denied Juliana Gonzalez in front after Alfano did great work along the boards to get the puck to Gonzalez.

Twarowski was the difference in the opening period as she stopped Ava Martin in close 4:35 after Broccoli’s goal, then made a great pad save off a shot by Patel in front with 1:02 left in the period.

GIRLS HOCKEY 2023-2024

All-State Players -  Gabi Prisco '15; Gabi Prisco '16; Gabi Prisco '17; Veronica Lynn '17; Veronica Lynn '18; Taylor Nowak '18; Veronica Lynn '19; Taylor Nowak '19; Mackenzie Gardner '21; Grace Nowak '21; Meghan Dupre '22

THE HOME OF WEST HAVEN SPORTS

WestieBlue

Stunner
WH/SHA falls in overtime in season opener
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(December 5, 2023)
 - The season opener for the West Haven / Sacred Heart Academy girls hockey team was moving along nicely, until it was not. Twice leading by a pair of goals, the Westie Sharks could not hold on in a 5-4 overtime loss to Trumbull/St. Joseph Tuesday evening at the Edward L. Bennett Rink.
Trailing 1-0, the Westie Sharks evened the game at the 7:14 mark of the opening period when Juliana Gonzalez scored off an assist from Geena Montano. WH/SHA took a 2-1 lead 2:13 later when Alina Lipinsky tallied off an assist from Olivia Twarowski, before the margin increased to 3-1 with 2:51 remaining in the first when Hailey Azzarone scored off an assist from Taylor Alfano.
The two-goal lead held until the third period. With a 3-2 advantage, the Westie Sharks again went up by a pair of goals 3:33 in when Olivia Twarowski scored an unassisted goal.
The Westie Sharks could not hold on as Trumbull/St. Joseph got within one with 4:08 left and evened the game with 1:57 to go to force overtime.

Evelyn Twarowski made 15 saves in the loss.


First of the Season
WH/SHA tops Greenwich
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(December 14, 2023) 
- The West Haven / Sacred Heart Academy girls hockey team rebounded from its opening loss with a 5-2 victory at Greenwich Thursday evening. The win over the Cardinals was the first for the Westie Sharks.
Evelyn Twarowski made 19 saves in the win, while Rachel Harrison had a goal and an assist.
The Westie Sharks took a 3-0 first period lead when Juliana Gonzalez scored off an assist from Harrison, and Julianna Montano and Hailey Azzarone each scored unassisted goals.

Greenwich scored twice in the second period to get within a goal, but Harrison and Taylor Alfano got those goals back in the final period to secure the win. 


Two in a Row
WH/SHA defeats Hand
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(December 16, 2023)
 - The West Haven/ Sacred Heart Academy girls hockey team picked up its second straight road victory with a 5-3 decision over Hand-Madison Saturday evening in Northford to improve to 2-1 on the year.
Evelyn Twarowski made 30 saves, including 10 in the scoreless final period, to pick up the victory. Hailey Azzarone and Ashley Welch each had a pair of goals to lead the offense, while Geena Montano finished with a goal and an assist.
All the scoring came in the first two periods as the Westie Sharks took a 1-0 lead when Azzarone scored off an assist from Rachel Harrison 54 seconds into the game. Hand evened the game 1:12 later to send the contest to the intermission even at one.
The Westie Sharks took control of the game with the next three tallies to start the second period. Welch scored 1:07 into the middle period off an assist from Montano, before Welch scored again 7:26 later off an assist from Heather Fonda for a 3-1 lead.

Hand got within 4-3 on a pair of goals 45 seconds apart with 3:37 left in the middle period, but Azzarone restored the two-goal lead 24 seconds later off an assist from Elena Losito.


Three in a Row
WH/SHA rallies to top Guilford
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(December 19, 2023) 
- The West Haven / Sacred Heart Academy girls hockey team won its third straight game, all on the road, and improved to 3-1 with a 4-3 victory over Guilford Tuesday evening in East Haven.
Geena Montano and Julianna Montano each scored twice and had an assist, Ashley Welch had tree assists, and Evelyn Twarowski made 16 saves, including eight in the final period to preserve the win.
Trailing 1-0 to start the second period, the Westie Sharks got the equalizer when Geena Montano scored off an assist from Welch with 10:47 to go in the middle period. Guilford took a 2-1 lead after two periods, before West Haven /Sacred Heart Academy rallied for the win.

Trailing 3-1, the Westie Sharks needed just 3:07 of the third period to get within a goal when Julianna Montano scored off assists from Hailey Azzarone and Rachel Harrison. Geena Montano evened the game with 6:18 left in the third period with a goal off assists from Julianna Montano and Welch, before Julianna Montano scored the eventual winner off assists from Welch and Geena Montano with 3:58 to go in the game.


Four Straight
WH/SHA tops Masuk
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(December 23, 2023)
 - The West Haven / Sacred Heart Academy girls hockey team won its fourth game of the season with a 3-1 decision over Masuk Saturday afternoon.
Julianna Montano led the way with two goals, and Evelyn Twarowski made 32 saves in the victory as the Westie Sharks improved to 4-1 on the year.
Julianna Montano gave the Westie Sharks a 1-0 lead just 3:21 into the contest, before Masuk evened the game 4:26 later.

West Haven / Sacred Heart Academy took a 2-1 lead in the second when Geena Montano scored off an assist from Elena Losito at the 8:54 mark. The goal by Geena Montano held up until Julianna Montano iced the game with a rocket of a shot with 2:35 remaining in the contest.


Unhappy Return
WH/SHA falls to Guilford 2-1
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(January 8, 2024)
 - In its first game since leaving for the holiday break, the West Haven / Sacred Heart Academy girls hockey team was in for a battle. Unfortunately for the Westie Sharks, they did not have enough offense as Guilford posted a 2-1 victory in West Haven Monday evening.
The West Haven / Sacred Heart Academy defense did its part, limiting the Grizzlies to just 14 shots on goal. Evelyn Twarowski made 12 saves, but it was not enough as the Westie Sharks saw their four-game win streak come to an end.
West Haven / Sacred Heart Academy (4-2) took a 1-0 first period lead as Julianna Montano scored a power play goal 6:13 into the contest.

The lead lasted just 1:12 as Guilford got the equalizer. The two teams then played a defensive game until the Grizzlies scored the eventual winner at the 7:55 mark of the third period.


Lack of Offense
WH/SHA drops 3-1 decision against Masuk
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(January 10, 2024)
 - The West Haven / Sacred Heart Academy hockey team fell to 4-3 with a 3-1 loss against Masuk in Shelton Wednesday evening. The loss was the second straight for the Westie Sharks.
Megan Losito made 22 saves in the loss, including 17 in the first two periods.

Olivia Twarowski scored West Haven / Sacred Heart Academy’s lone goal in the opening period off assists from Juliana Gonzalez and Hailey Azzarone with 5:57 remaining.

That was all the offense in the contest for the Westie Sharks. Masuk scored the equalizer at the 10:13 mark of the middle period, then added two more in the third to seal its first ever win over West Haven / Sacred Heart Academy.


Tough Loss
WH/SHA drops 2-1 contest against Simsbury
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(January 13, 2024)
– The West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy hockey team fell to 4-4 on the season with a 2-1 loss against Simsbury Saturday afternoon at the Edward L. Bennett Rink in West Haven.
Evelyn Twarowski made 18 saves in the loss, while Heather Fonda scored the lone West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy goal. Fonda’s tally came with 4:02 remaining in the opening period off an assist from Taylor Alfano to even the game at one.
Simsbury scored the eventual winning goal at the 6:36 mark of the middle period.


In the Win Column
WH/SHA tops Amity/Cheshire/NH
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(January 17, 2024)
– With a balanced scoring attack, the West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy girls hockey team topped Amity/Cheshire/North Haven 4-1 Wednesday at Hamden. The victory helped the Westie Sharks improve to 5-4 on the year.
Geena Montano, Olivia Twarowski, Ashley Welch, and Alina Lipinsky all scored for the Westie Sharks. Olivia Twarowski, Kelly Manfield, Juliana Gonzalez, Julianna Montano, and Hailey Azzarone all had assists, while Evelyn Twarowski made 20 saves in the win.
Geena Montano gave West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy a 1-0 lead at the 7:47 mark of the second period, before the two teams went to the final period even at one.
Olivia Twarowski gave the Westie Sharks a 2-1 lead off assists from Gonzalez and Julianna Montano at the 9:22 mark of the third, before the game was evened up less than five minutes later.
Welch scored the eventual winner 21 seconds later off an assist from Azzarone, before Lipinsky scored the insurance goal with less than a minute to go.


WH/SHA falls to Southington
Westie Sharks drop 3-1 decision
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(January 19, 2024)
 – The West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy girls hockey team knew it was in for a tough battle when the Westie Sharks played Southington. That battle came to fruition as Southington scored the first three goals of the game and posted a 3-1 victory over West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy Friday evening in Newington.
The Westie Sharks (5-5) broke the shutout in the final minute of the contest as Geena Montano scored off assists from Ashley Welch and Taylor Alfano with 35 seconds remaining.
Evelyn Twarowski made 12 saves in the first two periods, while Megan Losito made six saves in the final period in the loss.


New Canaan tops WH/SHA

Westie Sharks fall 3-0
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(January 20, 2024)
 – The West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy hockey team lost its second straight contest and fell to 5-6 on the year with a 3-0 home loss against New Canaan Saturday afternoon.  
Megan Losito made 21 saves in the loss for the Westie Sharks, including eight in each of the second and third periods.

New Canaan scored once in the first period and twice more in the second as the Rams posted the victory. 


Home Loss
WH/SHA falls to Amity/Cheshire/NH
By MIKE MADERA
Westie Blue
(January 22, 2024)
 – Less than a week after topping Amity/Cheshire/North Haven on the road, the West Haven/Sacred Heart Academy girls hockey team was looking to do so again. Unfortunately for the Westie Sharks, that never materialized.
Despite scoring the first goal of the game, the Westie Sharks were unable to score again and fell to the Blades 2-1 at the Edward L. Bennett Rink Monday afternoon. The loss dropped the Westie Sharks to 5-7 on the year with their third straight loss.
All the scoring came in the opening period as Hailey Azzarone gave the Westie Sharks a 1-0 lead off an assist from Taylor Alfano just 1:05 into the contest.
The Westie Sharks never scored again and saw two first period goals by Lucy Dickenson prove to be the difference in the contest.
Evelyn Twarowski made 16 saves in the loss for the Westie Sharks.