It has been a season of success for Sacred Heart Academy basketball, proved evermore by the team’s exceptional performance in the Connecticut Class MM State Championship at Mohegan Sun Arena.  

Prior to the state tournament, the Sharks endured a rollercoaster of a regular season. Initially plagued by media dispute and speculation regarding the morality of the team’s 92-4 regular-season win over Lyman Hall, the team members and coaching staff knew that they would be a team that was talked about. But, this only pushed the sharks to work harder and play better, losing only one game within the entirety of the season (the team to which they lost to, they later defeated twice- one of these games being the conference championship). This success continued into the end of the regular season with the winning of the Southern Connecticut Conference championship over Daniel Hand High School of Madison, CT.  

Despite their immense successes, the sharks could not let it get to their head. The team remained humble, continuing to work hard and grow stronger. This is what led them, keeping the group persistent and able to avidly compete in the state tournament. With a first-round bye due to their high, number-one rank, the sharks defeated Kolbe Cathedral in the second round, Berlin in the Quarterfinals, and St. Paul in the semi-finals. All of these games exemplified the shark’s strengths, though none had tested them the way in which St. Joseph’s would in the state finals.  

Sunday, March 20th, 2022 the speakers blared the national anthem as the Sacred Heart Academy Sharks and Saint Joseph Cadets stood in Mohegan Sun Arena, surrounded by hundreds of fans.  


The sharks started the game off swiftly, the first half of the game 35-22 with SHA in the lead. The future of the game looked promising for Sacred Heart Academy players. This was until the cadets began a 1-3-1 zone defense, making it much harder for the sharks to score. Because of this, the shark’s vast lead soon diminished as both teams were tied 48-48 with less than three minutes remaining in the game. Nonetheless, the Sacred Heart Academy players, coaches, and spectators remained faithful; and, thanks to this persistent faith, players Sydney Rossacci and Emma Kirck put up a collective four points for the sharks, thus making the cadet’s two-point rebound non-effective on the outcome of the game. As the timer hit zero and the buzzer loudly blared, the Sacred Heart Academy sharks celebrated their 52-50 much-deserved win over St. Joseph’s High School in the Connecticut Class MM State Championships.  

“St. Joe’s is an excellent team and they got us on the ropes a bit with that 1-3-1 but luckily we have seniors who are composed and figured out how to make enough plays to beat a very talented St. Joe’s team,” SHA coach Jason Kirck said. Senior Rosa Rizzitelli put up a game-high of 19 points, followed by sophomore Lauren Thompson with 11 points. “That was amazing. That got me so hyped when she hit that,” Rizzitelli says about Sydney Rosacci. “Our depth is so strong and we know we can trust everyone on the bench. The points show it, we all contribute. It’s not just one player or two. The most important thing for our team is that everyone contributes.”

The sharks are appreciative of the successes they encountered this season and are hopeful that this culture of hard work will translate into their seasons to come.