NORTH BRANFORD - The St. Paul girls lacrosse team had the best season in its four-year history come to an end Thursday afternoon in the Class S state tournament quarterfinal round, as the No. 9-seed Falcons lost at No. 1 North Branford, 18-4.
The Falcons, who finish the year 12-6 overall, had previously beaten Lewis Mills 13-7 in the first round on Tuesday in the first postseason appearance in program history.
North Branford is 15-2.
Bristol Eastern 4, Waterford 3 (14 innings): Ethan Ryan and Cory Fradette pitched the No. 20-seed Lancers to a victory over No. 4 Waterford in the Class L state baseball tournament on Wednesday, overcoming a tough day for the local team at the plate.
Ryan started the game for Bristol Eastern (14-8) and pitched into the sixth inning, giving up three hits and three runs (one earned), walking one and striking out seven. Fradette relieved in the sixth, when Ryan gave up a double to leadoff hitter Sonny Pezzello, and pitched 6 2/3 innings of two hit, scoreless ball, walking three and striking out 10, leaving the game in the 12th inning when he reached the CIAC pitch limit.
Ryan returned to the mound and pitched the final 2 1/3 innings, allowing no hits, no runs, no walks and striking out five. He became the winning pitcher when Eastern pushed across an unearned run in the top of the 14th.
In the 14th, Noah Hickey opened the inning with a walk off John Pellegrino, the third pitcher for Waterford (16-5). Carson Sassu followed with an infield single between first and second. Dave Bernier hit into a fielder’s choice, leaving runners on first and third with two outs. Then Fradette’s grounder was misplayed and Hickey scored the go-ahead run.
Ryan retired Waterford in order in the bottom of the inning to secure the win.
The Lancers scored three runs in the top of the fourth to go up 3-0. Singles by Josh Nohilly, Mac Goulet and Hickey loaded the bases with one out. Sassu singled to right to score Nohilly and Goulet scored when the throw in was wild. James Dauphinee then laid down a bunt to score Hickey with the third run of the inning on a perfect squeeze play.
Waterford came back with three runs in the bottom of the fourth. One-out singles by Pezzello and Jared Burrows and a walk to Matt Driscoll loaded the bases. Pezzello scored on a wild pitch and Bobby Silva’s grounder was misplayed. The subsequent relay throw was wild and two more runs scored, tying the game 3-3.
Eastern had only seven hits for the game, two by Sassu. Sassu also played an excellent game in right field, including a perfect throw to the plate to nail the potential go-ahead run in the bottom of the eighth. Jarrow Burrows had walked with one out and stole second; and then with two outs, Bobby Silva singled to right and Sassu’s throw to the plate nailed Burrows for the final out of the inning.
Waterford’s first two pitchers, Burrows and Ryan O’Connell, pitched the first 13 innings, giving up six hits, three runs and striking out 29 Bristol Eastern batters - Burrows with 14 K’s and O’Connell with 15 - including nine consecutive batters from the final out of the fourth inning through two outs in the seventh. Bristol Eastern had no base runners from the fifth through the 10th.
With the win, the Lancers advanced into the quarterfinal round, where they will face No. 12 Branford (15-7) at Branford High School on Saturday at 2 p.m.