By Rob Potter
LAKE HUNTINGTON November 21, 2003 While it was raining cats and dogs outside, dozens of Bulldogs and Lady Bulldogs were honored Wednesday night inside the new Sullivan West High School.
Scores of parents, siblings, administration members and faculty members gathered in the schools auditorium to congratulate the athletes and coaches of the Sullivan West fall sports teams.
In his welcoming remarks, SW Superintendent Michael Johndrow noted that unfortunately this summers wet weather prevented the new athletic fields from being ready for play this fall season. But he noted that the gym is ready for the winter sports season.
While he congratulated all of the student-athletes and coaches, Johndrow asked the senior athletes to stand up and be recognized.
These seniors have set a great example for the other athletes, Johndrow said.
SW Athletic Director David Franskevicz noted that a total of 210 students competed for the Bulldog and Lady Bulldog fall sports teams. Those teams only had 17 seniors, an average of two or three per squad. Franskevicz said the SW teams often competed against teams that had as many as 12 to 18 seniors on their rosters.
Our athletes deserve praise for their dedication and perseverance throughout the season, Franskevicz said.
Coach Greg Brewer then spoke about the junior varsity girls soccer team and its performance this autumn. Members of the team included: Jessica Armstrong, Tara Brewer, Lauren Ellison, Kelsey Hornicek, Karry Johnston, Donna Kelly, Kristi Kern, Patti Knack, Katie Moloney, Rachel Peters, Ginger Pierce, Jessica Pitz, Skie Rocco, Laura Stabbert, Stevie VanWagenen, McKenzie Wilbur and Alexa Williams.
In his remarks, varsity girls soccer Coach Mike Mahoney noted that this was a season of growth, a season of being competitive and a season of a lot of heartbreaking matches. Along the way were practices on hot summer days, a match played on an afternoon when the mercury reached only 32 degrees and games against bigger and more experienced teams.
These girls swam in the biggest pond they could swim in, Mahoney said. But to a girl they did all you could ask for as a coach. They worked to accomplish goals this season.
Mahoney added that he let the team members vote for the squads Most Improved Player and Most Valuable Player. The MIP was Janet Saul and the MVP was Jessica Lederman.
Other members of the team were: Erin Bernhardt, Kristen Brucher, Jessica Corbett, Kate Fanning, Angela Fortin, Tracy Henry, Vanessa Kline, Heather Lander, Maura Mullally, Nellie Norden, Amanda Patterson, Rachel Peloquin, Michelle Rhodes, Katie Thelman and Cassie Valentin.
Jennifer Warner coached both the junior varsity and varsity volleyball teams this fall.
The JV team had a wonderful year, Warner said. The team was undefeated, they had a 21-0 record.
Members of the team were: Kimberly Boyd, Robin Crotty, Krystle Gorr, Amanda Gruenke, Marissa Lanese, Megan McCormack, Erika McKinney, Sarah Nicoletti, Melissa Reynolds and Michelle Spafford.
Crotty and Nicoletti were presented with Sportsmanship Awards, while Crotty and McKinney were the recipients of the Most Improved Player awards. Reynolds and Spafford were named the teams MVPs.
While the varsity squad won only one match this season, Warner noted that this was the first-ever Lady Bulldog varsity volleyball team. She noted that because of that fact, several players established school records. Those records were set by Jaclyn Bunch (23 aces), Christina Lavinski (58 service points, 30 kills), Colleen Metzinger (22 blocks) and Sabrina Reimer (26 assists, 25 digs).
Other team members included: Katie Bernhardt, Dayna Carlo, Sarah Beth Cohen, Sarah Cutler, Jami Hert and Nicole Skursky.
Bernhardt earned the teams Sportsmanship Award and Reimer was named the MVP.
Boys cross country Coach George Rose noted that his team took third place at the Windsor Invitational, second place in the Washingtonville Invitational and compiled an 11-1 record in dual meets.
This team had a great year, he said.
The coach noted that two runners, Mike VanWagenen and Rob Ward, qualified for the state cross country meet and that Matthew Gain, Trevor Kreznar, VanWagenen and Ward were named to the All-Sullivan County Cross Country Team.
In addition to those already mentioned, the Bulldog squad included Eric Cina, Matthew MacArthur, Adam Nebzydoski and Ian Parnett.
Nebzydoski was chosen as the teams Most Improved Runner and VanWagenen was honored as the teams Most Valuable Runner.
The Lady Bulldog cross country team also enjoyed a successful season. The squad repeated as the Section IX Division IV champions, took fifth place at the OCIAA Championship Meet, won the Tully Invitational meet and placed second at the prestigious Marathon Invitational.
This was a fantastic season, Coach George Rose said. At the beginning of the season, the team set some goals and they worked hard to achieve them.
Shakelton noted that five team members April Ackermann, Jamie Clifford, Michelle Manzi, Jessica Wagner and Amanda Ward were chosen for the All-Sullivan County Cross Country Team. Shakelton added that Moselle DiPane was an honorable mention selection for the All-Sullivan squad.
In addition to the aforementioned athletes, Eleanor Bryan, Kimberly Parks, Rebekah Peters and Ashley Relyea were members of the Lady Bulldog cross country team this autumn.
Wagner was chosen as the teams Most Improved Runner and Ward was named the squads Most Valuable Runner.
Cheerleading Coach Tara Brey praised the members of the squad for showing a lot of spirit and pride.
They had great skills and work ethic, Brey said. They really enjoyed the season.
The cheerleading squad consisted of Mercedes Beede, Brittany Coney, Amanda Conley, Genna Delgado, Heather Gorr, Julie Keller, Ashley Nicoletti, Dana Roeder and Katie Schroeder.
Coney was named the Most Improved Cheerleader and Delgado was honored as the Most Spirited Cheerleader.
We came within an onsides kick recovery of making the playoffs, Bulldog varsity football Coach Ron Bauer said. We had a good season in many ways. I think we have established the solid foundation of a good, solid program.
Bauer noted that one of the strengths of his team is youth. Only three of the players are over the age of 16 and the Bulldogs will lose only one senior to graduation next June.
Members of the team were: Allen Ackermann, Joe Breslin, Jared Carlew, Steve Daley, Orion Darder, Marc DeCristofaro, James Erlwein, Devin Fields, Todd Fitch, Mariano Franco, John Glassel, Corey Hornicek, Brian Hubbert, John Kitson, Ben Kleiner, Patrick Knack, Andy Krantz, Jonah Lagrutta, Bryan Lopez, Andrew Mascara, Joe Meyer, Patrick Mullally, Steve Musso, Mike Oralls, Mike Peck, Scott Peters, Ken Redard, Ryan Redmond, Bret Reimer, Andy Rosenberger, Brian Sandler, Danny Schwartz, Matt Swendsen, Ben Tonjes and Andre Trujillo.
Meyer was named the teams Most Improved Player and Glassel was chosen as the teams Best Lineman. Bauer presented Coachs Awards to Musso and Justin Polizzi, who was the teams manager.
We were 5-12 overall and 2-8 in our league, but those numbers are a bit misleading, varsity boys soccer Coach Joe Ebeling said. A lot of times, the other team scored a goal late in the second half to win the match. In all of our games but one, we were tied at halftime.
Ebeling added that his team was very young. While there were six seniors on the squad, the other players were all sophomores and freshmen.
The team members were: Carlos Argueta, Ross Bernhardt, Greg Brewer, Kevin Brewer, Kevin Cappiello, Bryce Copp, Mike Erlwein, Chris Franke, Kienan Garn, Konrad Koss, Joe Layman, David Lungren, Jeremy Morgan, Billy Nordenhold, Will OBrien, Garrett Owen, Kevin Pinkel, Paul Pitz, Ed Raum, Brandon Redmond, Jonathan Reynolds and Bryan Schmidt.
Franke was honored as the teams Most Improved Player and Layman was named the MVP.