Sports

SBU Athletic Director Shawn Heilbron accepts the 2019 Commissioner’s Cup from America East Commisioner Amy Huchthausen. Photo from SBU

SARATOGA SPRINGS: Following a historic 2018-19 season, Stony Brook University has claimed the Stuart P. Haskell, Jr. Commissioner’s Cup for the first time in school history, the league announce at its annual awards dinner at the Saratoga Hilton on June 6. University at Albany came in second place followed by UMass Lowell in third.

The trophy was accepted by SBU Athletic Director Shawn Heilbron.

“The Cup is coming home to Long Island,” announced  Heilbron shortly after the event. “This belongs to our Stony Brook Athletics coaches, staff and — most importantly — student-athletes,” he said. Stony Brook is just the fourth America East school to win the Commissioner’s Cup. Past recipients have been the University of Albany, Boston University and the University of Delaware.

Michael Watts accepts his award for 2018-19 America East Man of the Year from Amy Hutchhausen. Photo from SBU

The Commissioner’s Cup annually recognizes the strongest athletic program in America East as determined by a scoring system that rewards a school for success both during the regular season and championship competition in the conference’s 18 sports.

At the same event, Stony Brook men’s track and field and cross-country member Michael Watts of Islip was named the 2018-19 America East Man of the Year.

Watts had a decorated career on the track and cross-country course as a Seawolf, winning two individual conference track and field titles while helping the cross-country team to two consecutive America East Championships in 2016 and 2017. The team captain also holds the program record in the 3,000 meters and garnered several All-Conference, All-IC4A and MVP honors throughout his career.

Most importantly, Watts was a leader in the community as well. On campus, he volunteered and was involved with a myriad of organizations including the Stony Brook PACK program, the Student Athlete Advisory Committee and PAWS. The Islip native also helped raise and allocate funds for numerous events and charities such as 9/11 Vets, the EJ Autism Foundation and the annual Midnight Run to help clothe the homeless.

Watts is pursuing his MBA in health care management, holding a 3.8 GPA. He received his undergraduate degree in 2018 with a 3.4 GPA in health science with a concentration in health care policy and management.

During his time at Stony Brook, Watts was put on the America East All-Academic Team, America East Commissioner’s Honor Roll, Dean’s List and America East Honor Roll. He was also a member of the National Society of Collegiate Scholars, the Stony Brook Society of Distinguished Scholar Athletes and a recipient of the Joel Mitofsky Memorial Scholarship.

Winning the Suffolk Championship wasn’t the goal for the Northport girls lacrosse team, though they went on to capture the Long Island title defeating Farmingdale on June 1, punching their ticket to the New York State semi’s at SUNY Cortland. Then, the Tigers mauled Pittsford 13-3 on Jun 7 to reach the Class A Championship game the following day against Baldwinsville. Unlike the contest the previous day, the Tigers had their hands full, but where able to hold their opponents at bay June 8 to win the game 10-8 to raise the championship plaque. 

Brian Schreck, left, holding his hammer trophy along with his brother Eric Schreck Photo from John Schreck

By John Schreck

On June 8, many wrestlers from high schools and middle schools across Long Island took part in the second annual Vin Altebrando Wrestling Festival in Huntington, hosted in honor of the beloved Walt Whitman High School coach who died last year.

The above photo depicts Miller Place residents Brian Schreck and his proud brother Eric Schreck. Brian competed in the tournament.

Brian won the “hammer” trophy — first place for his weight class of 127-132 pounds for middle schools.

John Schreck is a Miller Place resident.

Community Corner submissions are accepted for every issue. If you have a story you would like to submit, even something as small as a story of finding a lost dog or a small accomplishment of your own, send it to kyle@tbrnewsmedia.com

The Harborfields Tornadoes were too much for East Islip in the Suffolk County Class B title game, winning the championship for a second year in a row with an 11-6 victory May 29 at Farmingdale State College.

John Osmun, a junior, scored twice with two assists, Thomas Sangiovanni had an assist and two goals and Danny Alnwick had the hat-trick. Stephan Markowski had a pair of goals and Ian McGullam Nick Caccamo both scored.

In victory, Harborfields vied for the Long Island Championship, but lost the June 1 face off with Manhasset 16-2 at Hofstra University.

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It was a must-win game for the Eagles of Rocky Point to even the series and force a game three during the June 3 Class A finals, but the Sayville bats picked up the pace in the fifth and sixth innings to de-throne the defending Suffolk Class A baseball champions, putting the game away 8-3.

The Eagles, who defeated Shoreham-Wading River a year ago to capture their first county title in their program history, concluded their season 15-4 in their division. The Eagles will have their work cut out for them next season as they’ll lose nine players of their 15-man roster to graduation.

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Port Jefferson junior Aidan Kaminski rips a shot on goal in the Suffolk Class D County final against Mattituck May 28. Photo by Bill Landon

Port Jefferson’s boys lacrosse team, the No. 2 seed, trailed most of the way against Mattituck in the Class D County final at Farmingdale State College May 28, and surged late in the game to make a three-goal game. Mattituck showed why it’s the top seed in the division, keeping the Royals at bay to take the Suffolk title 14-10.

Port Jeff junior Aidan Kaminska topped the scoring charts for the Royals, netting four goals. Sophomore Gage Jampol along with sophomore teammate Daniel Koban each scored twice, and senior Jonathan Moshe and junior Colton VanOverberghe both stretched the net. Freshman keeper Peter Murphy had eight saves on the day. The Royals conclude their season at 8-7 in the division, 10-7 overall.

It took more than 48 minutes of regulation play to decide the Suffolk Class A Championship May 30 between top seeded Smithtown West and the No. 2 seed Ward Melville Patriots, but when time expired both teams were tied at nine goals apiece. It came down to Ward Melville junior Jack Gillen, whose stick would decide the contest two minutes into the sudden death overtime period when junior Steven Germain fed him the ball and Gillen found the cage, his first goal of the game, to win it 10-9. That shot will punch the Patriots ticket to the Long Island Championship round, and will make it the fourth time Ward Melville were made county champs.

Germain topped the scoring chart for the Patriots with his game winning assist to go along with his hat-trick, while senior Dylan Pallonetti and junior Rocco Barbero both scored twice.

Senior John Hoffman led the way for Smithtown West with three goals and the Caddigan brothers, Matt the senior and Danny the sophomore, had two goals each.

Smithtown West concludes their season with a 13-2 record in Div 1, with 14-3 overall.

The Patriots will take on Massapequa for the overall Long Island Title at Hofstra University June 1. Game time is at 10:00am.

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The Wildcats erupt after Anthony Cimino’s goal found the cage in the opening seconds of the overtime period, for the Class C title against Mount Sinai at Farmingdale State College May 28. Photo by Bill Landon

The Mount Sinai Mustangs boys lacrosse team traded goals with the Shoreham-Wading River Wildcats throughout all 48 minutes of regulation in the Suffolk Class C final at Farmingdale State College May 28. Both teams knotted at 13-13. 

It was SWR senior Anthony Cimino’s stick that made the difference when he scored his only goal of the game in the opening seconds of the sudden victory period to give the Wildcats the win, and with it another county championship victory. 

The Mustangs couldn’t contain Shoreham-Wading River junior Xavier Arline, who did what he’s done all season topping the scoring chart for the Wildcats with six goals and a pair of assists. SWR sophomore Johnny Schwarz stretched the net four times and teammates Jack Erb, Alec Gregorek and Tyler Schwarz each scored.

Senior Bobby DeMeo topped the leaderboard for the Mustangs with an assist and six goals.

With the win the Wildcats advance to the Long Island Class C championship round where they’ll face Cold Spring Harbor June 1 at the James M. Shuart Stadium at Hofstra University. 

Photo by Jim Harrison/SBU Athletics

The Stony Brook Athletic Department held its annual awards ceremony, “The Wolfies” on May 13 in the Island Federal Arena and several student-athletes received hardware.

The 2019 Senior Athletes of the Year were Ryland Rees (Port Coquitlam, British Columbia) of men’s lacrosse and Shania Johnson (Frederick, Md.) of women’s basketball.

The 2019 Junior Athletes of the Year were baseball’s Nick Grande (Smithtown) and women’s lacrosse Ally Kennedy (North Babylon).

Track and field’s Luke Coulter (Jamesport) and women’s soccer Sofia Manner (Helsinki, Finland) took home Sophomore Athlete of the Year honors.

The 2019 Freshman of the Year honors went to Miles Latimer (Fairfax, Va.) of the men’s basketball team and Jamie Wei (Chiayi City, Taiwan) of women’s tennis.

Senior Michael Thompson (Wallkill) of track and field and senior Ana Carrion-Rodriguez (La Linea, Spain) of women’s tennis were the winners of the Male and Female Senior Scholar-Athlete awards.

Sophomore TJ Morrison (Yonkers) from football and senior Julie Johnstonbaugh (Neshanic Station, N.J.) of women’s soccer were presented the Athletic Director’s award by Stony Brook Director of Athletics Shawn Heilbron for their embodiment of Stony Brook Athletics’ ideals and core values.

A brand new award in 2019, redshirt sophomore Andrew Garcia (Harlem) won the Comeback Athlete of the Year award. After sitting out from playing competitive basketball for two years, he came back to play in all 33 games this season, averaging 22 minutes per contest. At the end of it all, he earned America East Sixth Man of the Year honors.

The Male and Female Danni Kemp Teammate award, was given to student-athletes nominated by their teammates. The award is named in honor of Danni Kemp, the softball student-athlete who passed away in 2017 from brain cancer. Her parents, Cliff and Melinda Kemp, presented the awards on Monday night to senior Chris Pedone (Port Jefferson Station) of men’s lacrosse and sophomore Danielle Petrovich (Cortlandt Manor) of softball.

Senior Darian Sorouri (Wilmington, Del.) of track and field and graduate student Emily Costello (Webster) received the Seawolves Impact award. These honors are given to a student-athlete who has demonstrated exceptional contributions to his or her sport on the playing surface as well as within the campus and community.

Another new award in 2019, the Noah Farrelly Spirit of the Seawolf award, is given to a male and female student-athlete who exemplifies the passion and pride for their Stony Brook Athletics experience that Noah felt in his short time here. The winners were Carrion-Rodriguez of women’s tennis and junior Cameron Avery (Christchurch, New Zealand) of cross country/track and field.

Junior Sam Kamara (Carteret, N.J.) of football and senior Katelyn Corr (Suffield, Conn.) of softball received the male and female NSCA All-American award. The award recognizes an individual’s athletic accomplishments and their dedication to strength and conditioning.

Dressed in purple, runners took to the streets for the newly renamed Jill Nees-Russell Power of One Family Fun Run. Photo by Kyle Barr

A wave of purple flooded through Port Jeff May 18 as the Royal Educational Foundation hosted their sixth annual Family Fun Run, now named in honor of Jill Nees-Russell, an active village resident and foundation member who died last year.

Close to 200 people came out for the yearly event, raising funds for the foundation’s efforts to promote and aid the local school district. As the event went under way, foundation treasurer Laura Zimmerman spoke on the verge of tears about Nees-Russell, a proponent of both the foundation and the school district. She was nominated three times for the Power of One award, but was ineligible for the first time, too sick to receive it the second. Instead of giving her the award posthumously, the organization instead decided to rename the entire event in her honor. 

“We wanted to recognize Jill’s contribution to our village, school and community with a lasting tribute to her amazing spirit,” she said.

In addition to their Power of One award, the foundation awarded $750 to Fred Russell, Jill’s husband, who plans to use the money to create a scholarship in her name.

This year’s Power of One award went to Tony Butera, a teacher in the Port Jefferson School District who the foundation said inspires students and others in and out of the classroom. 

“To even be mentioned in the same space as Jill is an honor,” he said.

Port Jeff Chamber wellness fair showcases the bounty of healthy living

After the run, hundreds congregated at the Earl L. Vandermeulen High School gym for the 10th annual Health and Wellness Festival, hosted by the Port Jefferson Chamber of Commerce.

Visitors could learn more about eating healthy, dieting, exercising and medicine from multiple vendors such as Mather and Stony Brook University hospitals. Participants even had the opportunity for face painting and to participate in goat yoga, doing poses such as “downward kid,” and “stretching goat.”

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