Pioneers Take on South Dakota State and Compete in Zone 2, Region 5 IHSA Competition

On a beautiful spring like day on February 19th, the Sacred Heart Pioneers took on Fairfield University & Zone 2, Region 5 in IHSA competition and also hosted South Dakota State University in NCEA competition.

Coach Susan Horn accompanied the Pioneers to Mystic Valley Hunt Club for the IHSA competition where the judge for the day was Lynn Peters. In Open Flat, junior Devan Beaulieu placed second, senior Brian Buchanan placed third and senior Abbie Britton placed fourth. In Open Fences Buchanan placed fifth and sophomore Jocelyn Alfieri placed fifth. In Intermediate, Sophomore Allie Buccos placed second in Flat and second over Fences. In Novice Flat, freshman Cortney Sevigny placed first, and for the second time this season, competed for High Point Rider.  Freshman Ashley Alaimo placed fourth, and sophomore Arielle Pagano placed second in the event. In Novice Fences, Sevigny placed second and Pagano placed fourth.

In the Walk Trot Canter division, freshman Amanda Contento placed fifth competing in her first collegiate IHSA competition. Junior Emma Joseph placed fourth in the Walk Trot division.

The Pioneers finished in third place for the competition with 31 points. Trinity College took home first with 35 points and Fairfield placed second with 33 points.

Head Coach Tiffany Hajdasz and Coach McAllister coached the Pioneers during the NCEA meet against South Dakota State University at River's Edge Farm in Bethany CT.  Officiating at the meet for the Hunt Seat events was Carolyn Vincent of Long Island. Vincent, along with Susan Ashe, judged the 2011 Varsity Equestrian National Championships in Waco Texas. Officiating at the meet for the Western events was Pierre Briere of Stockton, NJ.

Representing SHU for the Hunt Seat Team were freshmen Alison Brosky and Taylor DiBella, senior Abbie Britton and junior Devan Beaulieu.  The meet started with opening ceremonies with Britton, competing in the final NCEA meet of her career having the honor of holding the American flag during the national anthem.

In the first event of the day, Equitation Over Fences, Britton (84-79) and Brosky (86-83) won their match against the Jack Rabbits, earning two points for the Pioneers.   Brosky was the high scorer in the over fences event.  After one event, the score was tied 2-2 with competition in Equitation Flat following in the outdoor arena.  The Pioneers took four out of four points thanks to Brosky (78-76) DiBella (72-68) Britton (75-68) Beaulieu (74-65) and headed into the Western competition leading 6-2.

Representing SHU for the Western Team was freshman Taylor Robbins, making her NCEA competition debut, sophomore Margaret Vogel, junior Molly-Kate Carven and senior Adrianna Dattoli. In Western Horsemanship, Dattoli (74-73.5) scored one point for the Pioneers but the JackRabbits edged out Pioneers Vogel (70.5-72) Carven (73-74.5) and Robbins (63.5-73) in the remaining match ups, bringing to pull within 7-5.  In the final event of the meet, Reining, the Pioneers fell to the JackRabits 3-1. Dattoli won her match up (63-62) but Carven was slightly edged out by Holzworth (68-68.5). Vogel fell to Dunlavy (0-70), Robbins (0-64).  Dattoli competed in her final NCEA meet of her career, and finished scoring two western points for the Pioneers.  Carven was named the Reining MVP.

After the Western events were completed, the score was tied 8-8. Using the EQ formula as required by NCEA to break the tie, the Jackrabbits were declared the winners.

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