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Centereach Cougars

The Cougars of Centereach fresh off their season opening victory two days earlier, chalked up another one in the win column when they edged visiting Smithtown East 2-1 at home Sept 4.

Senior mid-fielder Oscar Garces struck first scoring at the 27-minute mark off an assist from senior forward Robert Arenas. With 4 minutes and 42 seconds left, Smithtown East senior Alex Palas drove his shot home to make it a new game. Thirteen minutes into the second half, Arenas scored off an assist from Garces to put his team out front, 2-1. Centereach senior goal keep Ryan Jenkins was kept busy in the final minutes with a late game attack from the Bulls but finished the game with seven saves to secure the win.

Centereach is back in action Sept 9 hosting Half Hollow Hills East while the Bulls have a road game against Huntington. Both games start at 4 p.m.

Trailing the Bulls of Smithtown East, 15-2, late in the opening quarter the Cougars of Centereach clawed their way back to draw within 6 at the halftime break Feb. 14. The Cougars found their rhythm in the third quarter and closed the gap to a single point in the last three minutes of play, but the Bulls were able to hold off the late game surge and win the non-league matchup, 35-28.

Ava Mueller topped the scoring charts for Smithtown East with two field goals, a triple and 4 from the charity stripe for 11 points. Teammate Paige Doherty netted 8 and Josie Lent banked 6.

Two sophomores led the way for Centereach with Juliana Speziale netting 9 for the Cougars, and Ashlynne Gangji tacked on 7.

In this COVID shortened season, Centereach has three games left as Smithtown East has four before post season play begins on Feb. 26.

Centereach’s girls fencing team opened their season on the right foot with a 16-11 victory over the Huntington Blue Devils at home Jan. 23.

Huntington head coach Michelle O’Brien said her team was still shy two of her fencers lacking the mandatory six practices but hopes to be at full strength soon.

“These young women have done their best at their meets so far, and although they fell short today, their spirits are high, and I am impressed with their competitiveness,” O’Brien said, adding that junior Abby Simpson notched her first win of the season.

Huntington is back out on the strip Jan. 26 where they travel to Commack for a 4:30 p.m. start. Centereach is back in action at home Jan. 27 where they host Walt Whitman at 6:30 p.m.

The Northport Tigers outran the Centereach Cougars, leading by 24 points at the half and then cruised to a 76-43 victory at home in a League III matchup Jan. 28. 

Junior Pat Healy topped the scoring chart for the Tigers with nine field goals, two triples and a free throw for 25 points. Senior Larry Citrola followed with 13 while junior Robby Kennedy banked 11. 

Centereach junior Chris Cartolano and senior Matt Robbert netted 13 points apiece while junior Matt Maxwell chipped in five.

Northport remains undefeated in league play this season and sits atop the leaderboard at 10-0, 17-1 overall with two games remaining before postseason play begins. The loss drops the Cougars to 3-6 in their division and 4-13 overall.

Northport retakes the court with a road game against Smithtown West Jan. 31. Tipoff is at 4 p.m.

Centereach is back in action Feb. 1 with a home game against their crosstown rival Newfield. Game time is at 1 p.m.


The Comsewogue girls basketball team continued their pre-season winning ways in a non-league matchup against Centereach Dec. 9. The Warriors downed the Cougars 39-27 to make it five in a row. Comsewogue senior Veronica Riddick topped the scoring charts for the Warriors with nine points and 10 rebounds. Teammate Lindsay Hanson banked eight and Annalise Russo and Danielle McGuire netted seven points each.

Both teams have one more non-league contest before hitting the road to begin league play Dec 17. The Cougars travel to Smithtown West searching for a win and the Warriors take on Deer Park both, games tipoff at 4 p.m.


Rocky Point senior Gavin Davanzo drives by a defender in a non-league matchup Nov. 29. Photo by Bill Landon

Rocky Point struck first and often in their 2nd non-league game of the pre-season against visiting Centereach, besting the Cougars 56-41 at home Nov. 29. The Eagles hit the road for another non-League contest against Comsewogue Dec. 4 with a 5:45 p.m. start, before their home opening league debut against Hauppauge Dec. 6. Game time is 6 p.m.

Centereach will play Ward Melville at home Dec. 3 and travel to Commack two days later for a pair of non-league starts, with both game tip off at 5:45 p.m. They will conclude its pre-season when it travels to Sachem East Dec. 10 for a 6:15 p.m. start. League play for the Cougars begins on Dec. 17 with their home opener against Smithtown West. Game time is 6 p.m.

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Senior wide receiver Matt Robbert led the way for Centereach first on a 42-yard touchdown pass play from his younger brother Justin and then on a short yardage run for his second touchdown of the game in the Cougars’ regular season finale, at home against Half Hollow Hills East Nov. 1.

Robbert pulled double duty as the place-kicker and booted both extra points. Teammate Liam Webber on special teams recovered a blocked punt in the Hills East end zone to put his team out front, 20-0. Hills East broke the ice midway through the third quarter when they scored on a short run and with the point after, trailed 20-7.

The win lifts the Cougars to 5-3 in Division II which makes them No. 4 seed, earning a home playoff game against No. 5 Connetquot Nov. 8. Kickoff is at 6 p.m.

Defense was the story of the game Oct. 19 when Centereach senior Matt Robbert broke the ice when he punched in on short yardage for the touchdown midway through the second quarter. Robbert then kicked an extra point to make it 7-0.

Smithtown East struggled offensively, and it wasn’t until junior running back Tyler Pohlman punched in on a short run for the Bulls with under two minutes left. Needing the extra point to retie the game, the kick was partially blocked and the Cougars held on for a 7-6 win, dampening the Bulls’ homecoming celebration.

Eric Harrington got the call time and time again grinding out 107 yards on 20 carries for the Cougars, while Robbert gained 55 yards in 10 attempts.

The win lifts Centereach to 3-3 who hit the road against Connetquot Oct. 25 before returning home to face Half Hollow Hills East Nov. 1.

Smithtown East slips to 2-4 and must win out against Half Hollow Hills East Oct. 26 and Northport Nov. 2 for any hopes of postseason play.

Centereach boys soccer, now at 3-5 in the league, had their hands full when they took on Smithtown West. The Bulls sit atop the League III leaderboard at 8-1 after beating the Cougars, 3-0, Oct. 11.

Senior Andrew Agunzo broke the ice for the Bulls 11 minutes into the opening half with a goal to take the early lead. The Cougars struggled for shots on goal as Smithtown West dominated the second half when senior forward Trevor Harrison scored the insurance goal and scored again to seal the deal. Ryan Jenkins had five stops in goal for the Cougars.

The Cougars battled Huntington at home Oct. 16. Game results were not available at press time.

Smithtown West is back in action Oct. 18 when they hit the road, also against Huntington, with a 4 p.m. start.

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Centereach senior co-captain Stephanie Gatto led her team with 10 kills and seven blocks, senior Natalie Walsh killed eight with six blocks, and sophomore Erin Lema had three blocks and seven kills to sweep the visiting Wolverines 25-18, 25-12 and 25-21 Sept. 27.

Centereach Cougars girls volleyball remains undefeated in League III at 5-0, 8-1 overall, where they’ve allowed their play to go beyond three sets only twice this season. Centereach sits atop the League III leaderboard one game ahead of Smithtown West and will retake the court on the road against Hills East Oct. 3. First serve is 4 p.m.

The loss drops Newfield Wolverines to 3-3, and they are also back in action Oct. 3 when they host the Bulls of Smithtown West. Game time is 5:30 p.m.