Otter Valley


SENIOR CAPTAIN RILEY Keith steals the ball from a Windsor player during Monday’s game in Brandon. Independent photo/Angelo Lynn
BRANDON — The Otter Valley Union High School field hockey team picked up two wins and a tie in recent action, including a hard-fought contest against Windsor on Monday that ended 2-2 after a 10-minute overtime dual featuring seven-on-seven. The Otters improved to 3-0-1 heading into a Saturday game at Brattleboro, whom they defeated 6-1 earlier in the season. On Sept. 8 the Otters upended host Woodstock, 3-2, in what Coach Jodie Keith described as a strong all-around effort. OV’s goals came from senior middie Brittney Jackson (assisted by Mackenzie McKay), Alice Keith (assisted by Ryleigh...

OTTER VALLEY UNION High School Varsity Boys' Soccer
BRANDON –– School is back in session at Otter Valley Union High School, and so are fall sports. At OV, that includes girls’ and boys’ soccer, field hockey, football, cross-country running and golf. Coaches and athletes have set goals as they move forward in the season. Here’s a brief preview of the season ahead for OV athletes FIELD HOCKEY Field hockey won its first game this season –– 6-0 against Brattleboro in Brandon on Sept. 4, with Lily Morgan in goal for her second year starting. The Otters highlighted what should be a balanced attack this fall: Riley Keith and Brittney Jackson...
BRANDON — The Otter Valley Union High School boys’ soccer team opened on Friday by coasting past visiting West Rutland, 5-1. Max Derby scored twice to pace the Otters, and Luca Cifone notched a goal and an assist. Drew Pelkey and Hayden Bernhardt also found the net for OV. Bernhardt played goalie for the first half, when OV took a 3-0 lead, and Brian Stanley took over for the second half. West Rutland’s Cayman Pratt broke up the shutout bid in the late going. The Otters were expecting a stiffer challenge from host Proctor on Wednesday.
BRANDON — New York nonprofit College For Every Student (CFES) has selected 20 schools in Vermont and upstate New York to receive funding for college-readiness programming, starting this fall. The announcement for those selected for the program — called Brilliant Pathways — came June 1. The 20 schools selected include five in Vermont and 15 in New York, out of 72 schools that applied to the $1.5 million program. Otter Valley Union High School is one of the five Vermont schools selected to participate. OVUHS Director of Guidance Meredith McCartney is facilitating the program at OVUHS. McCartney...

MIA POLITANO
BRANDON — Otter Valley Union High School has selected the Valedictorian and Salutatorian for the Class of 2021. Mia Politano of Brandon, daughter of Paul and Erika Politano, is this year’s Valedictorian. Grace Coolidge of Brandon, daughter of Brian and Kelly Coolidge, is the Salutatorian. Politano was a member of the National Honor Society and has been awarded academic excellence in numerous advanced and AP classes, including math, science and the humanities. She enrolled in AP World History, AP Chemistry and AP Statistics as a junior and AP Literature and AP Biology as a senior. She has been...

THE GRADUATING SENIORS and guests were well spaced on Markowski Field giving lots of social distance during Saturday’s Otter Valley Union High School commencement ceremony. Seventy-six young adults received diplomas. Independent photo/William Haig
BRANDON — On a sunny, beautiful day that saw 76 Otter Valley Union High School seniors graduate on a well-spaced Markowski Field, in observance of loosened pandemic guidelines, Principal Jim Avery said afterward that the event was a “brand new way to hold a graduation, so this class gets to set the standard.” Adorning the stage were vibrant bouquets donated by the Brandon Florist Shoppe, while blue and white balloons highlighted the canopy that was set up on the field this past Saturday, June 12. Of the seniors who earned their diplomas, through a pandemic-filled school year, Avery said...
BRANDON — After a tense meeting last month, the school board came together June 2 to continue their discussion of the 2.9 Equity policy, ultimately approving the measure 9-2 to ensure that the superintendent “shall not fail to interrupt systemic inequities and institutional bias, and shall not fail to take all reasonable action.” School board member Kevin Thornton raised a motion to amend the professional development section within 2.9 so that teachers should read Martin Luther King Jr.’s books. This raised tension among the group. “Was that a friendly amendment?” asked Superintendent Jeanne...
BRANDON — The Otter Valley Union High School softball team won one Division II playoff game before bowing out of the tournament with a road loss to the top seed. In the No. 9 Otters’ first-round win on June 2, they scored seven runs in the seventh inning to oust host No. 8 Lamoille, 13-6. Josie Cone belted a three-run homer to highlight the OV rally, and Riley Keith, Bryn Blanchard and Grace O’Connell also chipped in offensively for OV. Keith tossed the first five innings for OV, striking out 12, and MacKenzie McKay tossed two shutout innings to wrap up the win. On Saturday, top-seeded Lyndon...
Spring of 2019 saw plenty of success for Otter Valley sports teams, none more so than for the baseball squad. The Otters earned the No. 1 seed in D-II before falling to Fair Haven in a close final. Only one player, senior catcher Alex Polli, returns from that squad, but there are 37 players in the program, including another four seniors — Lane Eddy, Lucias Sheldrick, Dylan Gaboriault and Parker Todd — and six juniors, many of them varsity athletes in other sports. Coach Mike Howe will emphasize fundamentals, and word has it that there are decent pitchers among those who signed up. The Otters...

COMMODORE BATTER KARRIE Ayer takes her cuts at the plate in the second inning of the 13-1 home win over Poultney on Tuesday. Independent photo/Steve James
ADDISON COUNTY — The Vergennes and Middlebury union high school softball teams won their openers on Tuesday, but Otter Valley dropped its debut on the road to rival Fair Haven. Defending Division II champion Mount Abraham was set to open on Saturday by hosting Missisquoi, but that game was postponed twice, first to Wednesday and then to this Friday. The Eagles will instead debut on Thursday, weather permitting, at home vs. OV. COMMODORES The Commodores had also been scheduled to visit Lake Region on Saturday, but that game was called off. Instead, they opened on Tuesday by defeating...

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