Village Beacon Record

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Kevin Cutinella leads Wildcats with four goals, receives championship plaque from parents

Jimmy Puckey doesn’t even like lacrosse. But now, he’s a champion.

“It’s not my favorite sport,” Puckey said. “It’s nothing like football, but you have to do what you have to do. You have to play.”

What would get him to like the sport more?

“More hitting,” he said. “Less getting hit with the ball also helps.”

What Puckey does between the pipes is special. And he did it for his Wildcats, making save after save when it counted to help Shoreham-Wading River to its first Long Island championship title since 2012, with an 8-6 win over Garden City Saturday at Hofstra University.

“Jimmy might not like lacrosse, but he’s playing for his friends, and he has such a passion for his brothers that he doesn’t want to let them down,” head coach Mike Taylor said. “He might not like lacrosse, but he loves his friends.”

It was a different first quarter from what teams have recently seen from the Wildcats, and junior Kevin Cutinella stole the show, finishing the game with four goals on five shots.

The midfielder scored early unassisted, and junior attack Chris Gray added a tally off an assist from senior attack Jason Curran with a man-up advantage for the 2-0 lead.

“He doesn’t panic, and we lean on him because he calms everyone down,” Taylor said of Cutinella. “He’s just a great kid.”

Puckey clipped the ball and made a save seven seconds later, and at the 5:42 mark, Cutinella scored his second goal off a pass from senior midfielder Jon Constant to finish a 3-0 run.

Garden City saved a shot by junior midfielder Joe Miller, and Puckey made another block before Garden City put its first point on the board with 1:40 left to end the scoring for the first quarter.

“Communication was key, not making too many errors on offense and just playing fast,” Cutinella said. “Just playing our game.”

Garden City scored four unanswered goals to take the lead, but Cutinella wasn’t having any of it, and passed the ball to junior Joe Miller who, with a back-door cut, leaped in front of the net and dumped it in for the tying goal with 22.8 seconds left in the first half.

“We have said that we haven’t really played four complete quarters, and I think even today, we played a great first quarter, a poor second quarter, and then a great third and fourth,” Taylor said. “I’m still waiting for four full quarters and when we do that I think we’ll win a state championship.”

Gray received two feeds from Miller, but both shots were blocked with Garden City heavily defending the team’s top scorer.

With 4:52 left in the third, Cutinella scored unassisted for his hat trick goal.

“They had the long pole on Jonny [Constant] which led me to have the shortstick defensive midfielder on me and I just took advantage of that,” Cutinella said. “We weren’t talking in the beginning and then we changed that around, and when our defense plays good, our offense plays good.”

After a few missed Wildcat shots, Constant scored unassisted for a 6-4 advantage with 27 seconds left in the quarter.

“We never beat Garden City and it was great to beat them here in my senior year,” he said. “We had to stop them on defense first and then we had to put them in on offense with great ball movement. The chemistry is good and it’s been a fun ride.”

Puckey, knowing what to do to secure the lead, batted the ball out of bounds to his left with 1.2 seconds on the clock.

“He just showed up and is playing his A game,” Cutinella said. “He likes lacrosse now.”

Cutinella’s parents, pre-planned, but surprisingly to their son, presented the team with the championship plaque.

“Seeing them on the field made my day even more,” he said. “You can’t really put the words together for that stuff. It’s a great experience and I love them. They’ve been there for me.”

Cutinella said this win means everything, adding that the team had one goal at the beginning of the season, and they’ve almost achieved it.

Taylor is also proud to see his team come through with this kind of success after the school scored its second consecutive Long Island championship crown in football this school year.

“This is what you work for the entire year and to see all the hard work pay off and to get to this moment, this is what you play for,” he said. “We’ll celebrate today, but I think now we have unfinished business. I have a lot of the football players on this squad and I think some of their successes is translating over onto the lacrosse field. The kids are playing well in big moments.”

He’s sad to see this season coming to a close, but couldn’t be more thrilled for the special moments these boys have had throughout this memorable season.

“The saddest moment is realizing right now I have four more practices left with these kids,” he said. “Having limited time with a special group of kids, I wish it could go on forever.”

One of the most special moments so far, was for him to see Cutinella receive the plaque from his parents, especially after the game he’d had.

“That’s an ironic moment — especially when it was planned prior to this — for him to have that type of game,” he said, fighting back tears. “These kids have been through so much tragedy, they just deserve this. I think someone might be looking down from above.”

Suffolk County Legislator Rob Trotta goes over legislation to suspend the camera program. Photo by Phil Corso

The Legislature may not be behind them, but Suffolk County residents are still calling the red light camera program a money grab and a safety hazard.

People cried out in support of county Legislator Rob Trotta’s (R-Fort Salonga) bill to suspend the county’s program during a Public Safety Committee meeting on May 26, but the Suffolk legislative committee stopped it from coming to fruition. The vote was 5 to 3 against a motion to move the bill to the full county Legislature for voting after nearly 20 residents spoke up against the use of the cameras.

Stephen Ruth Jr., pleaded not guilty at his arraignment on June 3 to 17 counts of criminal mischief after allegedly tampering with 16 red light cameras at intersections along Route 25 in Coram. He also spoke at the Legislature meeting late last month.

“Red light cameras are a detriment to Suffolk County,” he said. “The risks and damages to the well-being of Suffolk County residents far outweigh the benefits. We all know now that red lights cameras are a systematic form of extortion and nothing more. … Traffic signals were manipulated for revenue and it was only made possible by Suffolk County’s reckless willingness to do anything for money.”

Stephen Ruth mugshot from SCPD
Stephen Ruth mugshot from SCPD

Residents cited statistics to try to back up their issues with the program, using a 42 percent increase in rear-end collisions in 2014 as evidence of the program’s shortcomings, and said nearly half of the locations where cameras were installed showed an increase in personal injury.

“You’re not here working for the middle class people, you’re actually hurting them,” Hector Gavilla said. “The program is not working at all. We were promised that these red light cameras would stop these incidents.”

But overall, crashes have decreased by 3.1 percent, while T-bone crashes have decreased by 21.6 percent. The data also reflects an overall decrease in crashes involved injury by 4.2 percent, based upon data from the New York State Department of Transportation’s most current data available as of December 2014.

Rachel Lugo, who has worked in highway safety for over 20 years, was the only person to speak in support of the cameras. She said that although crashes have increased, she believes it’s not because of the cameras, but as a result of more new drivers on the road, and “increasingly dangerous” issues like texting and being distracted while driving, drinking while driving and being under the influence of drugs.

“You can’t say that these crashes are increasing because of red light cameras,” she said. “What about stop signs? Let’s take them away also. Why won’t we just take away traffic lights? Red light cameras are not the problem. Teaching the motorists to change their behavior behind the wheel is where we need to start. If everyone stopped at the red lights we wouldn’t have to worry about what’s going on with fines and who is making money.”

There are statistics to back her up.

Paul Margiotta, executive director of Suffolk County’s Traffic and Parking Violations Agency, said that between 2012 and 2013, the county saw a 34,000 increase is licensed drivers, where prior to 2012 the average was trending down. He said citations for texting and driving and distracted driving doubled since 2011, which tends to cause rear-end crashes.

Legislature William “Doc” Spencer (D-Centerport) joined Leslie Kennedy (R-Nesconset) and Tom Cilmi (R-Bay Shore) in voting to pass the bill.

Spencer asked to put the program under a microscope.

“We have to do something,” he said. “It’s hard for me to discount the public outcry. There’s a lot of smoke here. I want to make sure I’m doing my oversight job to make sure I have looked at this with a very detailed eyed.”

A county report says Indian Head Road and Jericho Turnpike in Commack saw crashes increase since a red light camera was installed in 2014. Photo by Phil Corso
A county report says Indian Head Road and Jericho Turnpike in Commack saw crashes increase since a red light camera was installed in 2014. Photo by Phil Corso

County Legislator Kara Hahn (D-Setauket) agreed, although she stated that there was always an expectation that there would be an increase in rear-end crashes.

“Many things we deal with here are not black and white,” she said. “The policy decision was to institute an enforcement mechanism that will decrease the right-angle crashes which cause the more serious injuries and death, with the chance of and the expectation that there will be some uptick in rear-end crashes.”

She said she would like to see a report done on the intersections where there were a large number of rear-end crashes, to see if a majority of them were a result of the cameras, or other things like texting and driving.

According to William Hillman, Suffolk’s chief engineer, that investigation is ongoing. The county is in the process of reviewing crash data at the 42 intersections it controls. The state controls the other 58 intersections with cameras.

“These intersections where there’s been that high uptick, all-due haste is needed in reviewing what is going on so that we have a real answer,” Hahn said. “There’s a huge increase in crashes just in general because of distracted driving. This is happening more and more and red light cameras are not going to stop that. What red light cameras were designed to do was for the folks who were choosing to put their foot on the gas when the light turns yellow, to rethink that. They will actually stop at a red light, and that will save lives when people know that there could be consequences for running a red light. And that probably already has, because we’ve seen a decrease in T-bone crashes, which are more serious and life-threatening, and that is the purpose of the program.”

Supervisor Ed Romaine is taking a leadership role in trying to streamline town government services. File photo by Erika Karp

Brookhaven officials announced a major win for the town, and ultimately for the community, during a meeting last week.

Financial services agency Standard & Poor’s Global Ratings upgraded the town’s credit rating from AA+ to AAA, the highest designation the agency issues. It also classified Brookhaven’s credit future as having a “stable outlook.”

The AA+ rating, which was issued in March 2015, came with a “positive outlook.”

“A municipality’s credit rating is an important and reliable indicator of its fiscal health determined by independent and objective fiscal monitors,” a statement from the town said. “A higher credit rating saves money on borrowings in the form of lower interest costs.”

Brookhaven Town Commissioner of Finance Tamara Wright said during a town board meeting last week that the credit report was based on a review of the town’s 2014 and 2015 financial statements that had gone on for about four weeks.

“I would just like to thank [Town Supervisor Ed Romaine (R)] for his leadership, his steady hand,” Wright said. “He makes our job at the finance office easy because he supports our initiatives and our controls. I also would like to thank the town board for the support they give our office. I would like to recognize each employee in the finance office. It’s the little decisions they make every single day, every control decision that leads to this kind of financial performance.”

The Standard & Poor’s report said the town has strong management and financial policies and a well-defined five-year capital improvement plan, and commended the town for paying off retirement system debt while maintaining fund balance reserves.

“It means a lot,” Romaine said on Tuesday in a phone interview.

The supervisor added that he is delighted by the rating. “It’s kind of like a report card from Wall Street saying the town is in pretty good financial condition.”

Romaine credited the financial department and the board for their hard work in making the rating possible.

“It sends a clear message that their elected officials are keeping a promise to cut spending and run the town more efficiently,” Romaine said in a statement. “Our conservative fiscal policies have the led the way to financial stability and I am proud to say that we continue to save millions of taxpayer dollars while still providing the services that our residents deserve.”

Councilwoman Jane Bonner (C-Rocky Point), who serves as the board’s liaison to finance, also had some positive words.

“I commend the supervisor for his leadership and fiscal discipline which has resulted in Standard & Poor’s highest credit rating,” Bonner said in a statement. “I am happy to have played a role in this great success and I look forward to working with him and his staff to further improve our financial position.”

Suffolk County’s own credit rating was lowered in October 2015 from A+ to A, making Brookhaven’s upgrade more noteworthy. Romaine called this “the first time in a while” the town has received a AAA rating.

The supervisor also vowed during last week’s board meeting to chip in to pay for a luncheon for members of the town’s finance department.

Shoreham-Wading River Wildcats win Suffolk County Class B title with 11-5 win over Sayville

Just call them the comeback kids.

For the second game in a row, Shoreham-Wading River juniors on the boys’ lacrosse team came up huge for the Wildcats.

At center field was Joe Miller, hunched over at the X under the hot sun Wednesday afternoon. He won 14 of 18 faceoffs, helping spark a huge second-half run that turned a 5-2 halftime deficit into an 11-5 win over Sayville for the Suffolk County Class B title.

“Joe Miller, they had no answer for him,” junior attack Chris Gray said. “He was giving us all those possessions and it was a hell of a game for him.”

According to Miller, he was just doing his job.

“I knew I did pretty well against them the first time and I just needed to do my job so the team could get the win,” he said. “It definitely helped, but everyone had an equal role.”

The two fed off each other — after a Jon Constant goal, Miller’s faceoff helped Gray to a goal of his own at the 9:35 mark of the third quarter, to make it a one-goal game.

Next, it was junior midfielder Kevin Cutinella, who received a pass from Gray to tie the game, like he did against Comsewogue in the semifinals.

“Me and Kevin are neighbors and he’s a great friend of mine,” Gray said. “We’ve been doing that since we were in third grade, so it means a lot to come out here and do this on such a big stage.”

Cutinella spread the credit around.

“There was just all around good passing and it opened up gaps for me to shoot,” Cutinella said. “They slowed us down in the first two quarters and we realized that that’s not how we play. We play fast, so we sped it up in the second half. We weren’t complacent, and we never settled down.”

He said he felt fortunate and was happy he was able to score the tying goal for the second straight game. He connected with his pal two minutes later, to help Gray to his hat trick goal.

What was no doubt the play of the game, though, was Miller’s second score that gave the Wildcats a three-goal lead. Hunched over again, in a familiar position, this time he found himself in front of the cage. Miller made a check that knocked the ball loose, and then, according to Gray, he “did his magic.”

“I made a little check and the ball ended up on the ground,” Miller said. “I had my back to the goal and I knew where it was, and I just flung it toward there and hoped for the best. It helped me out with the way I can position my stick.”

Being honest, Gray said his team was nervous trailing at halftime, but said head coach Mike Taylor kept the Wildcats settled.

“He told us not to get down on ourselves and we know we’ve been there before, just like last game,” Gray said. “We wanted to stick together and we kept the motto of playing together, playing for each other, and we really started to build off each other.”

The defense was solid in the last game, when the Wildcats held Comsewogue scoreless in the second half. The boys did the same against Sayville on Wednesday, with senior goalie Jimmy Puckey making nine saves between the pipes.

Gray pointed out that the team knows how good winning feels, since most of the guys are on the football squad and went undefeated in back-to-back seasons there. But he said that winning in lacrosse felt unreal, especially coming off a season a year prior, when the team went undefeated and were the favorite to go all the way until Sayville sent them home in the semifinals.

The win means a lot to Gray, because he was able to do it with all his brothers, and Cutinella felt the same.

“It’s one of a kind,” he said of the sensation, laughing. “It feels better than football. Don’t tell coach I said that.”

Drugs in Miller Place
On May 27 at about 6 p.m., a 37-year-old man from Miller Place seated in a 2009 Acura on Tyler Avenue possessed heroin, police said. He was arrested and charged with seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance. At the same location and time, a 46-year-old man from Middle Island possessed heroin and two different medications without prescriptions, according to police. He was arrested as well and charged with fourth-degree possession of a narcotic drug and two counts of seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance.

Cannabusted
At a home on Stanley Drive in Centereach, a 24-year-old man was found to possess cannabis at about 9 p.m. on May 25, according to police. He was arrested and charged with seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance.

How did those get in there?
A 34-year-old man from Wappenger Falls was found in possession of multiple bags of heroin at the 6th Precinct while being arrested on an unrelated charge stemming from an incident on Horseblock Road in Selden at about 10:30 p.m. on May 28, police said. He was charged with seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance.

Garden-variety criminal
A statue and decorative planters were stolen from the front yard of a home on Christian Avenue in Stony Brook at about noon on May 14, police said.

Back to work
Between November 2011 and December 2013, a 30-year-old man from Selden collected unemployment fraudulently, according to police. He was arrested at a home on Paula Boulevard at about 10:30 a.m. on May 27 and charged with fourth-degree insurance fraud.

Dirty job
On May 26 at the Walgreens on Route 112 in Medford, a 44-year-old man from Middle Island stole three bottles of Clorox bleach and a bottle of Tide laundry detergent, police said. He was arrested and charged with petit larceny.

Ruthless robbery
A 21-year-old man from Ronkonkoma approached a woman near the Walgreens on Route 25 in Selden at about 10 p.m. on May 26 and forcefully demanded money from her, according to police. He was arrested and charged with first-degree robbery.

Empty your pockets
While at the 6th Precinct at about noon on May 25 after he was arrested in Selden, a 27-year-old man from Rocky Point was found to possess the drug methadone, police said. He was charged with seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance.

Bike rides off
At about 12:30 p.m. on May 29, someone stole a black and white BMX bike from a home on Olympia Street in Port Jefferson Station, police said.

Cable repairman?
Someone tried to exit the Walmart on Nesconset Highway in Setauket without paying for a television and a pair of pliers at about 2:30 p.m. on May 29, according to police.

Know your parole
A 32-year-old man from Coram was in violation of his parole at about 2 a.m. on May 29, according to police. He was on Main Street in Port Jefferson when he was arrested and charged with the parole violation.

Rock-throwing spree
The rear passenger side window of a 2012 Jeep parked near a home on Avondale Drive in Centereach was smashed by someone at about 8 p.m. on May 27. On nearby Salem Road about 30 minutes later, the rear window of a 2006 Toyota was smashed and a rock was thrown through the driver side window of a 1997 Honda, according to police.

Missing drugs from CVS
Various over-the-counter medications were stolen from the CVS Pharmacy on Middle Country Road in Selden at about 1:30 p.m. on May 28, according to police.

It’s a fixer-upper
Household items were stolen from the Walmart on Nesconset Highway in Setauket at about 2 p.m. on May 28, police said.

Mishaps at Macy’s
A 29-year-old female from Ronkonkoma was arrested on May 29 at 1:10 p.m. after police said she stole merchandise from Macy’s in the Smith Haven Mall in Lake Grove, and had cocaine in her possession. She was charged with fourth-degree grand larceny valuing more than $1,000 and seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance.
On May 28 a 20-year-old man from Riverhead was arrested after police said he stole belts and shorts from Macy’s in the Smith Haven Mall in Lake Grove. He was charged with petit larceny.

Movie lover
A 57-year-old man from Hauppauge was arrested on May 29 at The Smithtown Library on Smithtown Boulevard after police said he stole movies. He was charged with petit larceny.

Stay sharp
Police said a 20-year-old man from Ronkonkoma threatened a group of people with a knife at the handball courts in Lake Ronkonkoma County Park on May 29, and then an hour later threatened a man with a knife standing outside his house on Smithtown Boulevard. He was arrested and charged with second-degree menacing with a weapon.

Gulf strike
A 23-year-old man from Ronkonkoma was arrested on May 28 after police said he stole money from a Gulf gas station on Express Drive North in Islandia, where he was employed. He was charged with petit larceny.

Takes one to steal some
Police said a 50-year-old man from Ronkonkoma was arrested after police said he stole various tools from a shed on a residence on Oakside Drive in Smithtown on April 30. On May 27 he was arrested at the 4th Precinct, and charged with petit larceny.

Not Kohl
On May 27, a 42-year-old man from Brentwood was arrested after police said he stole clothing from Kohl’s on Crooked Hill Road in Commack on multiple occasions. He was charged with two counts of petit larceny.

Adder-don’t
Police said a 30-year-old man from Smithtown had Adderall on him without a prescription while on East Main Street in Kings Park on May 26. He was arrested and charged with seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance.

Pocketing piping
A 27-year-old woman from Wyandanch was arrested on May 25, after police said she stole copper piping from a residence on Woodcut Drive in Mastic Beach. She was charged with third-degree burglary with illegal entry.

Car dramas
Police said an unknown person dented a 2011 Mini Cooper parked on Crescent Place in Smithtown on May 29.
On May 29, an unknown person damaged a 2012 Chevy that was parked on 5th Street in Lake Ronkonkoma.
One tire was stolen from a 2016 Honda parked on Gibbs Pond Road in Nesconset on May 29, police said.

Walmart woes
On May 29, police said an unknown person sole cellphone cases, a drill and DVDs from Walmart in the Smith Haven Mall in Lake Grove.

Dave and bust in
A 2012 Nissan Maxima parked in the parking lot of Dave & Buster’s on Veterans Memorial Highway in Islandia was broken into and a purse stolen from inside on May 28, police said.

Whole wallet gone
Police said an unknown person stole a wallet out of a shopping cart at Whole Foods Market on New Moriches Road in Lake Grove on May 28.

Cocaine couple
On May 29, a 21-year-old man and a 46-year-old man, both from Huntington Station, were arrested after police said they had cocaine on them while on New York Avenue in Huntington at about 2:30 a.m. They were both charged with seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance.

Shine some light on the crime
An unknown person shattered the rear window of a 2011 Honda CR-V parked on the corner of Lantern Street in Greenlawn on May 29.

Can’t party here
A 34-year-old man from Huntington Station was arrested on May 27 after police said he permitted patrons to consume alcohol on the premises at Hola Centro America Grocery on New York Avenue in Huntington Station. He was charged with violation of a special license consumption on premises.

The plastics
Police said a 24-year-old man from Huntington Station had three plastic bags filled with marijuana while on Depot Road in Huntington Station at 3:45 p.m. on May 26. He was arrested and charged with fifth-degree criminal possession of marijuana.

CVS sees things
Police said a 30-year-old man from Commack stole more than $1,000 from CVS on Commack Road while working there as an employee. He was arrested on May 27 and charged with fourth-degree grand larceny.

Not a safe environment for a baby
A 28-year-old man from Huntington Station was arrested on May 27 after police said he had multiple rounds of ammunition, loaded guns and cocaine in his home on 7th Avenue with a baby in the house. He was arrested and charged with seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance, second-degree criminal use of drug paraphernalia, third-degree criminal possession of a weapon, acting in a manor likely to be injurious to the welfare of a child and third-degree possession of narcotic drugs with the intent to sell.

Not exactly on a straight path
On May 27, a 20-year-old woman from Lindenhurst was arrested after police said she had prescription pills on her without a prescription while on Straight Path in Dix Hills at 11:50 a.m. She was arrested and charged with seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance.

Louis on the loose
A 19-year-old man from Melville was arrested on May 26 after police said he stole a Louis Vuitton wallet containing cash and credit cards while at the Walt Whitman Mall in Huntington. He was charged with fourth-degree grand larceny.

West Pulaski Road story
On May 26, a 22-year-old man from Huntington Station was arrested after police said he had a quantity of cocaine in his possession while at a residence on West Pulaski Road in Greenlawn. He was charged with seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance.

An apple a day takes the car away
Police said an unknown person stole a 2011 Ford Focus from the parking lot of Applebee’s on Walt Whitman Road in Huntington on May 29.

Thief conductors a search
On May 29, at the Huntington Station train stop for the Long Island Rail Road, an unknown person approached a woman, grabbed her and took her backpack with cash and medication in it.

Vapors is located on Main Street in Port Jefferson. Photo by Elana Glowatz

Local governments are cracking down on smoking in all its forms by confining related businesses to certain locations.

Brookhaven Town recently restricted smoke shops and lounges and one village is looking to strengthen rules already in place for the establishments.

The action started in the fall, when the Port Jefferson Village Board of Trustees passed a law that effectively banned hookah shops, as well as tattoo parlors and adult entertainment. Residents and village officials had been vocal about what they perceived to be too many shops on Main Street selling hookahs — water pipes used for smoking flavored tobacco — and their related products. Many had complained that the businesses attract an undesirable type of person to the area and sell unhealthy items. Some also said they feared the shops would sell paraphernalia and dangerous substances to underage patrons.

The dissent propelled a law that now restricts future hookah shops, tattoo parlors and adult establishments like topless bars to the Light Industrial I-2 District zone. While the preexisting shops are not affected, the law effectively bans future shops because only two properties in the entire village are zoned light industrial — and both of those Columbia Street plots are already occupied.

Hookah City is located on Main Street in Port Jefferson. Photo by Elana Glowatz
Hookah City is located on Main Street in Port Jefferson. Photo by Elana Glowatz

Passing an outright ban would have been an illegal action.

Port Jefferson Village is now seeking to tighten its restrictions by folding into the law marijuana dispensaries and stores selling products linked to e-cigarettes and vaporizers. The village code proposal, which will come up for a public hearing on June 6, states that such establishments bring “well-documented negative secondary effects … such as increased crime, decreased property values and reduced shopping and commercial activities.” It also cites the health risks of e-cigarettes and the dangers of exposing children to the behavior.

“The expansion of the foregoing businesses has resulted in increased anti-social behavior involving minors,” it says.

Among the restrictions, the shops in the light industrial zone could not be within a certain distance of facilities such as community centers, churches or schools.

The Town of Brookhaven got on the same train recently when its town board passed a law on May 12 that restricts indoor smoking establishments — businesses in which tobacco in any form, including through e-cigarettes and vaporizers, or other substances are smoked indoors. New shops can now no longer open within certain distances of residential areas, schools, churches, parks or other family- or child-oriented places. They also cannot open within 1 mile of one another.

Councilwoman Jane Bonner (C-Rocky Point), who came up with the idea, touted it as a measure to prevent kids from using drugs.

“You cannot believe how creative addicts and users are when it comes to situations like this,” she said, “what they can do and how they can manipulate this apparatus.”

Some have used hookahs, vaporizers and other tobacco devices to smoke marijuana, among other substances.

“This legislation came to pass because of what we see, what’s happening in our communities all over the place,” Bonner said. “This is a very important first step and we may take further steps as we see how this works out.”

Both the town and village laws have had their critics. In Port Jefferson, Trustee Bruce D’Abramo and other residents did not want the village interfering with the free market, which would determine how many smoke shops one neighborhood could sustain, and did not want the village policing people’s heath. They compared the smoke shops to the numerous bars in downtown Port Jefferson.

And Alex Patel, who works at Rocky Point Smoke & Vape Shop, said the town law might have little payoff because parents buy devices for their kids or the kids shop online — those under 21 may still get what they are looking for.

“Online, I see people buying left and right,” Patel said about vaporizers and similar devices. “It’s much cheaper online because they’re buying in bulk.”

But the town law also had community support: “When I think of these [smoking] lounges I think of heroin dens, something I read about and saw movies about when I was a child and scared the heck out of me,” Jeff Kagan, of the Affiliated Brookhaven Civic Organization, said May 12. “I believe that we don’t really know what these dens are all about or what’s really going to go on in these facilities. We don’t know the long-term impact.”

Alex Petroski contributed reporting.

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“We wanted to prove everyone wrong that doubted us, and we did.”

That’s what Mount Sinai junior goalkeeper Hannah Van Middelem had to say following her Mustangs’ 6-5 win over previously undefeated Bayport-Blue Point Tuesday, which earned the girls’ lacrosse team the Suffolk County Class C title.

Van Middelem came up with nine key saves to help her team to victory.

“I felt really confident because my defense was channeling outside shots, which helped me,” she said. “Our defense played great and the draw circle was amazing. We got almost every single ground ball.”

Van Middelem made her first save of the game just 30 seconds into the contest and senior attack Rebecca Lynch made the first goal off a free position shot. A Bayport-Blue Point yellow card left the team down a player, and sophomore attack Camryn Harloff took advantage of the penalty when she scored off an assist by junior attack and midfielder Leah Nonnenmann.

“We kept cool, calm and collected and took it like every other day,” Nonnenmann said. “We did our work, we adjusted to everything we needed to, we did it all. Communication was key and never letting our heads go down, no matter what.”

After Bayport-Blue Point’s Kerrigan Miller scored to cut the deficit, she forced a turnover, and a yellow card on a slash left Mount Sinai down one for two minutes.

Despite missing a player, Van Middelem wouldn’t let up the lead that easily, batting away a free position shot before Kelsi Lonigro evened it up for Bayport with 12:49 left in the half.

With 8:28 left, Bayport scored again, but a penalty prior to waved off the goal. Harloff attempted the next shot, but the ball bounced off the right post. Less than a minute later, senior midfielder Caroline Hoeg scored on a free position shot to give the Mustangs a 3-2 lead.

“It was all intensity,” she said. “We all knew what we had to do, we game-planned amazing, our coaches were on top of everything we had to do to beat them and we came out here and that’s exactly what we did.”

But Miller and Lonigro, two of the Phantoms’ strongest players, also weren’t going to go down without a fight. They scored back-to-back goals to give their team a 4-3 advantage heading into the halftime break.

“It’s a very intense rivalry, but it’s a good rivalry,” Mount Sinai head coach Al Bertolone said. “I’ve had great wins, and this is probably one of the best. We had a tough nonleague schedule, we lost to them straight-up the first time and we did some different things this time and the goalie played great. She’s an All-American type, which is what you need.”

Hoeg said despite the lead loss, her teammates knew to keep their heads in the game.

“Once they got the lead, we were a little down, but we knew we had to pick it right back up and come out here hard and do what we do,” she said.

Harloff had a shot saved to open the second half and Van Middelem made two straight saves, her second of which led to a Mustangs goal. After she passed the ball to Harloff, the ball was carried up to the front of the cage, where it was passed to junior midfielder and attack Rayna Sabella, who scored the tying goal.

Nonnenmann, trying to get a goal all afternoon, finally hit her mark when she swiveled around defenders in front of the cage and dumped in the go-ahead goal.

“I was a little off the first couple of tries and I was getting in my head, but I cleared everyone out, played my game and I finally pulled it out,” she said. “We’ve been working so hard and the hours and hours of practice we put into it was all for this.”

With 4:53 left to play, sophomore attack Meaghan Tyrrell passed the ball to Hoeg from 15 yards out, and a good goal gave the team a 6-4 advantage, despite Bayport’s defense being tough to penetrate.

“Once we got the lead, we knew it was ours,” Hoeg said. “From the huddles to the girls on the sideline, everyone cheering, we knew it was ours and we weren’t going to let it slip away.”

Bayport then wound up with the ball. The first of several free position shots was high and Van Middelem tipped the second away and made a save on the third to keep the game in the Mustangs’ favor.

Mount Sinai mostly maintained possession thereafter, but the stifling Phantoms defense forced a turnover that led to a breakaway goal with 41.6 seconds left to play.

Another Bayport yellow card left the Mustangs in control, and Tyrrell held onto the ball until the clock expired.

“This one is special,” Bertolone said. “We battled adversity, we did everything right. We’re young in some spots, but a lot of those kids were on the field last year. Hoeg played very well, she was tough all day, [senior midfielder Erica] Shea has been excellent all year. The kids really stepped up and came through for us.”

After losing to Bayport 10-2 in the regular season, and after a goal with one second left in the game gave the Mustangs a 10-9 win over Shoreham-Wading River in the semifinals, the girls now know anything is possible. Mount Sinai, at 15-3, has won eight straight games and looks to take the streak all the way back to the state finals, which the team won last season.

Mount Sinai faces Cold Spring Harbor in the Long Island championship on June 5 at 2:30 p.m. at a location still yet to be decided.

“This game helps us going forward,” Van Middelem said. “We felt really confident — we just believed in ourselves. We still feel confident. We can take it all the way.”

North Shore resident Ivan Kalina is remembered by many as a man of adventure. Photo from Yvette Panno

By Yvette Panno

Ivan Kalina, 84, of Setauket died peacefully the morning of May 27 following a brief illness.

Originally born in Kosice, Czechoslovakia, in 1932 to beloved parents Geza and Ilonka, Kalina’s life was defined by courage, strength and resilience. First as a European Jewish Holocaust survivor, later as an escaped refugee from Communism to America, his story shaped not only his life, but also the history of a generation.

During World War II, Kalina was a young child who managed to survive the Nazis’ early invasion of Czechoslovakia and the deportation of the Jews to concentration camps through the help of Christian friends and false papers.

In the final years of the war, he separated from his mother and father and went to Budapest, Hungary, to hide in an apartment with relatives just blocks from Gestapo headquarters that was bombed day and night by American, Russian and British forces.

Returning to Kosice, his was among the few Jewish families to survive.

Although his education was delayed for years by the war, as a testimony to his determination, in 1956 he graduated as the valedictorian of his medical school class from Charles University in Prague, as a pediatrician. That same year, he married his beautiful wife Vera Atlas, a histopathologist, in Kosice.

With the onslaught of Communist persecution of both Jews and democratic sympathizers, Ivan and Vera realized they could never be free in their oppressive homeland.

In 1965, they left their close families and planned a daring escape through the Yugoslavia border into Austria, until they could manage a flight to New York City with their two young children, Peter and Yvette. They came to this country with two suitcases and $200. With prison sentences awaiting them if they returned to Czechoslovakia, they dedicated themselves to making new lives. Ivan and Vera worked long hours at Bellevue Hospital and New York University while he took his medical board exams in English – his fifth fluent language.

Ivan’s favorite expression – said with characteristic humor and positive spirit – was “that’s why I came to America.”

To this country, Kalina brought with him the grit, charm and fun-loving outlook to be successful. His career spanned a private practice in pediatrics in Rocky Point as well as medical director of Little Flower Orphanage in Wading River, associate professor at Stony Brook University, and attending physician at both St. Charles Hospital and John T. Mather Memorial Hospital in Port Jefferson.

Always athletic and tanned, he was a fiercely competitive, daily tennis player and longtime member of the Harbor Hills Country Club near his original home in Port Jefferson. A perfect day was sitting in the sun near the backyard pool reading a newspaper. A remarkable skier until the age of 70, he loved to travel and took multiple trips out to his condo in Vail, Colorado, and traveled several times a year around the world.

His love of children was no greater than that for his five grandchildren, who called him Papi and of whom he was most proud: Olivia, Mia, Sydney, Jake and Sam.

He is also survived by his children, Dr. Peter Kalina and Yvette Kalina Panno; daughter-in-law, Michelle Kalina; and long-loved partner, Carolyn Van Helden.

As he would say in Hungarian: Sok Szeretet, Servuse Tatulko.

Long Islanders came together on Memorial Day to remember all the people throughout American history who gave their lives for their country. Events were held on May 30 across Suffolk County, with neighbors using wreaths, flags and rifle shots to pay tribute to the fallen heroes.

File photo

A teen was killed when his car overturned in the woods on William Floyd Parkway early on Saturday.

The Suffolk County Police Department said the Shoreham 19-year-old was pronounced dead at the scene after a police officer observed his 2005 Suzuki overturned in the northbound media near Whiskey Road at 5:45 a.m.

There were no other cars involved in the crash that killed the teen, identified as Kevin Callejas, according to police.

Detectives from the 7th Squad are investigating and impounded the Suzuki for a safety check.

Anyone who may have witnessed the crash is asked to call the squad at 631-852-8752.