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Stearns Enjoys Big Night at Stearns Beanpot

Bethel — For as long as Whitcomb High girls basketball coach Dennis Wood can remember, and probably some time before that, the Hornets and neighboring Rochester have been getting together once a year for the Stub Stearns Beanpot showdown. The date recalls a one-time state championship basketball player from Rochester High who lived in Bethel and spent his adult years supporting both schools.

So imagine how his step-granddaughter felt last night being the star of the Beanpot in her first such game.

Junior Ashley Stearns scored a game-high 24 points, snagged 12 steals and came within one rebound of a triple-double as Whitcomb rolled to a 53-25 win over the Rockettes. Stearns was on the junior varsity two years ago when the rivals last played a varsity contest; Rochester didn’t field a girls varsity team last winter because of low numbers.

“Her family is very close-knit and they all come to the games,” Wood said. “They’re very supportive of the sport. That’s why they named it after Stub.”

The 38th edition of the Beanpot belonged to Whitcomb (1-0) from the early going. Behind Stearns’ play and the rebounding of Cambry Zullick (17 boards), the Hornets held a 12-10 lead at the half and spent the rest of the night expanding on it.

Stearns did most of it, nearly outscoring Rochester on her own.

“She’s going to be a tough player,” Wood said of the junior. “She just shot well, very well, from the baseline. They’d get her in a man-to-man, she’d do a ball fake and take a nice 15-footer. She has a nice, soft touch.”

Phoebe Parrish led the way for Rochester with 17 points. Nicole Begin added eight for Whitcomb, which hosts Mid Vermont Christian tomorrow afternoon.

Conant 59, Kearsarge 48

North Sutton — Madison Springfield scored 28 points for the unbeaten Orioles (4-0), spoiling a 25-point night from Kearsarge’s Anna Cahill.

The Cougars (1-4) jumped out to a 17-12 lead at the end of the first quarter before scoring just two points in the second and trailing at halftime, 23-19.

“We started off great and just couldn’t hang on,” said first-year Kearsarge coach Kurt McCandless. “Conant was a little rusty, a little tentative early on, but they’re a good team and they began to execute as the game wore on.”

Katie Chadbourne added 13 for the Orioles while freshman Syd Bryk netted a season high 11 for the Cougars.

Kearsarge travels to Merrimack Valley on Tuesday.

Boys Basketball

Sharon 71, Concord 45

Concord, Vt. — As they did in Monday’s season-opening win at Cabot, the Phoenix (2-0) made significant halftime adjustments to turn a close game into a rout.

Trenton Morrison poured in a game-high 29 points for Sharon, which outscored the Wildcats in the second half by a 41-15 margin to win going away.

“It was like an identical game (to Monday); it was odd,” TSA coach Blake Fabrikant said. “In the second half, we increaed our pressure quite and bit and forced a lot of turnovers; they had 25 to our 12. Once we increased our pressure, we created a lot of problems for them.”

Sophomore Tanner James recorded a double-double of 12 points and 10 assists, controlling the tempo of the second half from his point guard position for the Phoenix. Brandon Tracy also had 12 points for Sharon, which continues its season-opening four-game road trip at Whitcomb on Tuesday.

Rochester 78, Whitcomb 32

Bethel — The Hornets fell to the rival Rockets in the boys’ half of the Stub Stearns Beanpot game.

Bradford Allen scored 12 points for Whitcomb, while Matt Kill contributed seven points.

Whitcomb hosts Mid Vermont Christian on Saturday.

College Athletics

Windsor’s Howe Hired
As Lyndon State Trainer

Lyndon Center, Vt. — Windsor native Christina Howe has been hired by the Lyndon State College athletic department as an assistant athletic trainer.

A spring graduate of the University of New Hampshire, Howe brings experience as an athletic training student at Dover High School to her new role with the Hornets. While holding down those responsibilities in 2011, Howe also served as the student athletic trainer for the UNH women’s basketball program. Howe also worked with the Wildcats’ football, cross country and track programs during her undergraduate years, and she was also a teaching assistant during camps hosted by the college’s field hockey and basketball programs.

Closer to home, Howe has worked a camp counselor for the Hartland Recreation Center and was an aide at the Mount Ascutney Hospital outpatient physical therapy department.