In girls field hockey: Falcons clinch Division III state championship

The Division III State Champion Falcons.  In the top row, from left to right:  Steph Tarryk, Jess Buckles, Alexis Bussiere, Kate Patenaude, Hayley Young, Brittany Fortier, Mariah Gentley, Morgan Greene, Aimie Morse, and Coach Chantelle Bouchard.  In the bottom row are:  Phoenix Alix, Kendra Fecteau, Kaitlyn Young, Adrianna Fournier, Kortni Driver, Brittany Royer, Bayla Stewart, Brianne Tetreault, Bethany Desrochers, and, lying down, Bailee Desrochers.   Photo by Chantelle Bouchard

The Division III State Champion Falcons. In the top row, from left to right: Steph Tarryk, Jess Buckles, Alexis Bussiere, Kate Patenaude, Hayley Young, Brittany Fortier, Mariah Gentley, Morgan Greene, Aimie Morse, and Coach Chantelle Bouchard. In the bottom row are: Phoenix Alix, Kendra Fecteau, Kaitlyn Young, Adrianna Fournier, Kortni Driver, Brittany Royer, Bayla Stewart, Brianne Tetreault, Bethany Desrochers, and, lying down, Bailee Desrochers. Photo by Chantelle Bouchard

copyright the Chronicle November 5, 2014

by David Dudley

BURLINGTON — The North Country Union High School Falcons defeated the Stowe Raiders 1-0 to clinch the Division III state championship in Burlington Saturday.

Brittany Fortier scored the game-winning goal eight minutes into the second half to lift the Falcons to their first state title since 1980.

“From the first day of practice, our girls had it in their minds that they were going all the way this year,” Falcons Coach Chantelle Bouchard said in a phone interview. “I knew we had a shot because we had made it to the semifinals for two consecutive years, and we had ten seniors this year.”

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In cross-country: Sam Brunnette wins Division I state championship

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Sam Brunnette approaches the finish line in Thetford, where he won the Vermont state cross-country championship Saturday.  Photo by Christina Cotnoir

Sam Brunnette approaches the finish line in Thetford, where he won the Vermont state cross-country championship Saturday. Photo by Christina Cotnoir

copyright the Chronicle October 29, 2014

by David Dudley

THETFORD — The North Country Union High School (NCUHS) Falcons had a strong outing at the Division I state cross-country championship in Thetford Saturday. Senior Sam Brunnette led the pack, finishing the 5-kilometer course in 17:06 to become state champ.

According to Falcons Coach Chris Shaffer, Brunnette is the second Falcon to claim that spot. Daniel Webster, who won back-to-back championships in 2003 and 2004, was the first.

“I knew I had a shot,” Brunnette said during a phone interview Tuesday. “I kept telling myself, if I can keep a fast pace, I’ve got a shot.”

Judging by his time, he maintained a fast pace all the way through.

“Right off the line I tried to stay in front,” Brunnette said. “For the first mile, I could hear the pack behind me. Then I pulled away. I never looked back.”

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In girls soccer: Falcons blank visiting Rebels 1-0

Dasha Plotnikov (left) and Mykayla Tanguay lock arms to defend against a throw-in.  Photos by David Dudley

Dasha Plotnikov (left) and Mykayla Tanguay lock arms to defend against a throw-in. Photos by David Dudley

copyright the Chronicle October 22, 2014

by David Dudley

NEWPORT — The South Burlington High School Rebels traveled to Newport to play the North Country Union High School Falcons Friday. A single goal determined the winner of this hard-fought match, as the Falcons pulled off an impressive 1-0 win on their home pitch.

Dehlia Wright scored the game’s only goal with 13:54 left in the first half, leaving the burden to score on the Rebels for the remainder of the game.

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Lake Region hosts cross-country relays

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Andrew Grittner of North Country Union high School waits for his second wind to kick in as he winds his way toward the final leg of Lake Region's cross-country trail. Photos by David Dudley

Andrew Grittner of North Country Union high School waits for his second wind to kick in as he winds his way toward the final leg of Lake Region’s cross-country trail.
Photos by David Dudley

copyright the Chronicle October 15, 2014

by David Dudley

Lake Region Union High School hosted a six-team relay race on Tuesday.  Among the teams competing were:  North Country Union High School, Lyndon, Peoples, Hazen, Stowe, and Lake Region (LR).

It was a beautiful day, warm, sunny, 70 degrees, and not a cloud in the sky. The first part of Lake Region’s course is riddled with hills, leading into the woods behind the school. The latter part of the trail is all downhill, though, which tends to bring out the best in these runners. Especially when they don’t have to worry about puddles and loose soil.

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QNEK presents thriller, Wait Until Dark

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Pictured are members of the cast from QNEK’s production of Wait Until Dark.  In the top row, from left to right, are Ross Murray, Victoria Young, and Nathan Sargent.  In the middle row, from left, are Mike Desjardins, Mary Hoadley, and Brian McCrea.  In the bottom row, from left, are Eric Alexandre, Brian McCrea, Ross Murray, Mike Desjardins, and James Cross.  Photo courtesy of QNEK

Pictured are members of the cast from QNEK’s production of Wait Until Dark. In the top row, from left to right, are Ross Murray, Victoria Young, and Nathan Sargent. In the middle row, from left, are Mike Desjardins, Mary Hoadley, and Brian McCrea. In the bottom row, from left, are Eric Alexandre, Brian McCrea, Ross Murray, Mike Desjardins, and James Cross. Photo courtesy of QNEK

QNEK Productions, the award-winning international theater company in residence at the Haskell Opera House in Derby Line, finishes its twenty-first main stage season with the highly entertaining and suspenseful thriller, Wait Until Dark, directed and designed by Susan-Lynn Johns with a set built under the guidance of Tom Rooney by the North Country Union High School building trades class.

Written by Frederick Knott — author of the classic mystery, Dial M for MurderWait Until Dark captures the audience with its complex story and noir undertones. In a time when gore and extreme violence run rampant in film and television, audiences will find it refreshing to find horror in the chase, more so than in a pool of blood.

The heroine of the story, set in the 1960s, is blind housewife Susy Hendrix (Mary Hoadley of Newport). Independent and resourceful, Susy is learning to cope with her blindness, which resulted from a recent accident. She is aided by her difficult, slightly unreliable young neighbor, Gloria (Victoria Young of Newport), with whom she has an exasperated but lovingly maternal relationship. Susy’s life is changed as she is terrorized by a group of criminals who believe she has hidden a baby doll used by them to smuggle heroin into the country. Unknown to Susy, her photographer husband, Sam (Nathan Sargent of Newport), took the doll as a favor for a woman he met on an international plane flight and unwittingly brought the doll to the couple’s New York apartment when the woman became afraid of the customs officials. Alone in her apartment and cut off from the outside world, Susy must fight for her life against a gang of ruthless criminals, led by the violent, psychotic Roat (Ross Murray of Stanstead, Quebec). The tension builds as Roat and his accomplices Carlino (Brian McCrea of Newport) and Mike Talman (Mike Desjardins of Newport), impersonate police detectives and friends of her husband in order to win Susy’s confidence, gaining access to her apartment to look for the doll. The climax of the play, a vicious physical confrontation between Susy and Roat in her dark kitchen, is one of the most memorable and frightening scenes in theater history. Rounding off the cast as policemen are James Cross of Island Pond and Eric Alexandre of Magog, Quebec.

Performance dates are October 10, 11, 17, and 18 at 7:30 p.m. and October 12 at 2 p.m. at the Haskell Opera House in Derby Line and Stanstead, Quebec. Reserve tickets by calling the QNEK Box Office at (802) 624-1490; charge tickets via phone or online through Catamount Arts, 1-888-757-5559, www.catamountarts.org; or purchase at The MAC Center for the Arts in Newport.

For information, and group rate quotes, contact the QNEK business office at 334-2216. — from QNEK.

For more things to do, see Things to Do in the Northeast Kingdom.

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Perkins wins titanium in national dance competition

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Kendra Perkins is wearing the medal she won in Sheer Talent national competition in Las Vegas in July.  Behind her are some of her dance photos and trophies.  Photo by Bethany M. Dunbar

Kendra Perkins is wearing the medal she won in Sheer Talent national competition in Las Vegas in July. Behind her are some of her dance photos and trophies. Photo by Bethany M. Dunbar

copyright the Chronicle August 6, 2014

by Bethany M. Dunbar

DERBY — At age 19, Kendra Perkins was no stranger to national dance competition. She had been there four times before.

July 7 to 12 was her fifth time at the Sheer Talent competition, and she came home from Las Vegas with a titanium medal. Her score was 298 out of a possible 300 points from three judges.

“I came off the stage and I was bawling,” she said. She thought she had done badly. A perfectionist, she often reviews videos of herself dancing to try to improve. It turns out she did pretty well, even though she wasn’t satisfied herself.

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In boys baseball: Falcons finish season with best record since 2007

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The Rice Memorial Green Knights displayed their aggressive base running all day as this spectacular collision with Falcon catcher Andrew Gonyaw (left) shows.  Coming in to score is Green Knight Tommy Fitzgerald, who recorded seven stolen bases on the day as teammate Timmy Shea (number 11) looks on. Photos by Richard Creaser

The Rice Memorial Green Knights displayed their aggressive base running all day as this spectacular collision with Falcon catcher Andrew Gonyaw (left) shows. Coming in to score is Green Knight Tommy Fitzgerald, who recorded seven stolen bases on the day as teammate Timmy Shea (number 11) looks on.  Photos by Richard Creaser

copyright the Chronicle June 4, 2014

by Richard Creaser

NEWPORT — While the Falcons were unable to match a 20-year-old record, they did equal their best record since 2007, finishing the season at 8-8 on Saturday. Had the North Country baseball team won one or both games over the weekend, they could have matched a more than 20-year-old record, Assistant Coach Jared Gonyaw said.

“They’ve put together a great season, and this is without a junior varsity program,” Coach Gonyaw said. “We had three underclassmen pitch today, and they held heir own.”

Finishing with a .500 record is an especially significant feat given the peculiar nature of the 2014 spring sports season. The Falcons played nine regular season games in the last two weeks and only seven games in the first three weeks of the season.

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In boys tennis: Falcons win over U-32 on strength of singles matches

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Nathan Marsh is enjoying his second season on the North Country Falcons tennis team, having come late to the program.  A lifelong hockey and soccer player, Marsh has emerged as one of the top four singles players in the Falcons tennis program. Photo by Richard Creaser

Nathan Marsh is enjoying his second season on the North Country Falcons tennis team, having come late to the program. A lifelong hockey and soccer player, Marsh has emerged as one of the top four singles players in the Falcons tennis program.
Photo by Richard Creaser

copyright the Chronicle May 14, 2014

by Richard Creaser

NEWPORT — The North Country Falcons tennis team extended its winning streak to two matches and evened up their season record at 3-3 with a 4-3 win over the visiting U-32 Raiders on Thursday, May 8. Coming into the contest, Coach Gary Atchinson predicted that the victory would be attained or lost on the strength of the singles matches.

“Our top four are very strong with a lot of experience,” he said. “We kind of need that to balance out the fact that we have a lot of inexperienced players.”

The Falcons team has only nine players — the exact number needed to field a team for each match. With very little wiggle room, it falls on the team to perform to its maximum capability each and every time. So far, they have not disappointed, Coach Atchinson said.

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At NCUHS: Spidey swings from NYC to Newport

G.G. Rafuse produced this striking image as the log for The Spidey Project’s original off-Broadway production.

G.G. Rafuse produced this striking image as the log for The Spidey Project’s original off-Broadway production.

copyright the Chronicle March 12, 2014

by Joseph Gresser

NEWPORT — A musical with music written by one North Country Union High School (NCUHS) alumnus and directed by another, will swing into town on Friday, May 16, for a single performance.  The staging of The Spidey Project will benefit the school’s Art and Communications Academy and help fund its fall musical production.

Chase Gosselin, who graduated from the high school in 2012 and is now engaged in a variety of theatrical enterprises in New York City, is slated to direct the show, which has a script written by Justin Moran and Jonathan Roufaeal, and music composed by Newport native Adam Podd and Doug Katsaros.

The show was created when Mr. Moran posted a video announcing the production as a response to the long-delayed and phenomenally costly Broadway production of Spiderman:  Turn Off The Dark.

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In boys basketball: Gray’s return to NCUHS bad news for Falcons

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NCBBall Gray cmykcopyright the Chronicle February 12, 2014

by Richard Creaser

NEWPORT — It was a bittersweet homecoming for Kendrick Gray, who returned to the North Country gymnasium for the first time this season on Friday night.  Gray, a former North Country Falcon freshman, now plays for the Rice Green Knights (12-3) as a potent sophomore forward.

“Coming in as an opponent was pretty nerve-wracking,” Gray said after Rice’s 74-39 win.  “I just wanted to do my best and everything kind of came out.  I wasn’t expecting to have as good a game as I did.”

Gray exhibited the kind of skills that made him a fearsome opponent for any team.  His 17-point performance, tops among both teams, including shooting 4 for 9 from the free throw line, a three-point basket, and five other baskets including a crowd-inciting dunk in the first quarter.  The fact that his heroics inspired cheers from both halves of the crowd was not lost on the amiable sophomore.

“I knew I couldn’t hide forever and I’d have to come back sometime,” Gray said smiling.  “I love my Newport peeps.  I love this place.”

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