By Mitch Silver

The singer Jerry Reed put the phrase to music more than 40 years ago: “When you’re hot, you’re hot. When you’re not, you’re not.” The Rye Boys’ Basketball team was definitely <not> last Thursday night. The sixth-seeds from Albertus Magnus led nearly all the way against the home-standing Garnets in the Section 1 quarterfinals and punched their ticket to the Final Four at the County Center, ending the season for the No. 3 Garnets.

Simply put, the locals couldn’t put the biscuit in the basket. Shooting guard and career 1,000-point scorer Charlie Nagle not only missed all his three-point efforts, the usually rock-steady All-Section performer missed four free throws on the evening. Certainly, the wallop he took in the third quarter that knocked the air out of him and kept him down on the floor for over a minute didn’t help. And Nagle did lead his team with 16 points, scoring several layups after his patented knock-the-ball-loose-from-behind steals on defense.

Unfortunately, Nagle’s shooting woes seemed to infect the other starters. Michael Carty scored eight points, making one of three from the foul line. Center Seamus McCrohan had three baskets, and Brett Egan was shut out. Only Max Samberg brought his A game to the Class A playoffs, hitting three trifectas while scoring 13 points for the Garnets. A.J. Thompson sank the only other Rye three in the second quarter.

Meanwhile, the other 1,000-point scorer on the floor Falcons’ swingman Justin Bullock led all scorers with 17, including a couple of key buckets down the stretch. Senior guard Collin Crispino added 14 points, seven rebounds, and four assists, and big man Connor Parahus (aptly pronounced “Powerhouse”) scored 11.

Still, with all their woes, Rye nosed in front late in the game. After trailing 16-10 after the first quarter, 27-25 at the half, and 44-39 after three, the Garnets found themselves up 48-47 when Samberg and Carty hit back-to-back contested baskets with six minutes left.

A couple of Falcon free throws made it 49-48. Carty missed a three, but alertly got back on defense to knock the ball away from Parahus as he drove for a lay-up. With the game winding down, Nagle airmailed a three-point try with the score 53-49. A Bullock score stretched the lead to six before Carty, with six rebounds for the game, and Samberg brought the Garnets back. Samberg’s step-back three from the right wing made it 55-54 with 24 seconds left.

After trying for the steal, Rye fouled Cameron McGrath. He missed the front end of a one-and-one and Samberg would end up missing a last-gasp effort in the paint. Parahus came down with his 13th rebound and the Falcons’ celebration began in the middle of the court.

Coach John Aguilar’s 16-6 Garnets shot just 4 for 24 from 3-point range and missed seven free throws in their last game of the season. The coach took the loss in stride.

It was very tough to come inches away from the County Center, but what the seniors have accomplished over the last two years has been remarkable, winning 32 games. I wouldn’t change a thing.”

Except, maybe, he’d have that final Garnet shot go in.

Rye High School stuck to tradition with their recent sold-out production of “Fiddler on the Roof” under Tom Snowden’s fine direction. The musical, based on Sholem Aleichem tales of poor Jewish families living in settlements in pre-revolutionary Russia, is rich in strong-minded characters and memorable music (“Matchmaker, Matchmaker,” “If I Were a Rich Man,” “Sunrise, Sunset”). Over 80 students were involved in the lively production.


Photos by Anne and Joel Darelius

By Mitch Silver

Capping a hugely successful season for Rye Country Day’s wrestlers, Hannes Boehning finished eighth in the country in the 220-pound weight class at the National Prep Championships held at Lehigh University last weekend. His Elite Eight effort earned Boehning All-American status in his third try at Nationals, and made him the second Wildcat so honored (Obinna Nwakeze was seventh in the Heavyweight class in 2010).

Fellow wrestler Max Mandell also qualified for Nationals at 145 pounds, and he pinned Jack Cassidy of St. Johns College Prep (Washington, D.C.) before bowing out of the competition.

Boehning wrestled five times that first day, winning his opening bout by a pin before losing a decision to 10th seed Parker Robinson of McDonough (Md.), 3-1, in the round of 16. This sent Hannes into the consolation bracket, where he needed to win three straight matches to make it back to the top eight. Head Coach Rich Knazik tweeted, “This is very tough to do, but that he did!”  

Pinning both Ethan Sypes of Bullis (Md.) and Maine’s Daric Johnson, the New England runner-up, Boehning still had to defeat Dymir Davis-Carruth of the Hill School (Pa.), a returning All-American who finished fourth a year ago. With Knazik and fellow Wildcats coach Hidalgo Nagashima prowling the sidelines, Boehning was up 1-0 going into the final period.

Here’s how Coach Knazik called it: “The match was very close and nerve-racking. Dymir tied it up with an escape and almost took down Hannes multiple times, but his defense was good. Hannes scored a takedown with a high single leg to go up 3-1, but then he got a stall warning. Dymir scored an escape to close the gap 3-2 and really came after Hannes, who stopped all attacks and did not back up. Finally, the match ended in a 3-2 thriller win. My hands are shaking as I am typing this!”

The next day, Boehning lost a 2-0 decision to Colin Lawler of Kincade (Tx.), which moved him to the 7th place final. After a very long wait he faced George Hooker of Father Ryan School (Tn.), giving up an escape with no time left to drop a very tight 3-2 decision.

The Wildcats had posted an 8-1 record before the post-season started. Boehning and Richard Antoine (287 pounds) won NYSAIS championships, though Antoine came down with the flu, preventing him from competing in the qualifying meet that sent Boehning and Mandell to Nationals.

In the final meet of the year, Rye Country Day finished 35th out of 108 teams, which isn’t too bad for only two qualifiers.  

Talented teens brought a variety of musical and theatrical acts to Rye Country Day School’s Dunn Performing Arts Center stage March 11. The occasion was The Rye City Lions Club fourth annual “Rye’s Got Talent.”

The Master of Ceremonies was Noam Ben Yakir, Rye High class of 2013. Curently a student at Macaulay Honors College at Hunter College, he is the Stage Manager of the Westchester Sandbox Theater.

The esteemed panel of judges was comprised of Meg Rodriguez (Rye Arts Center Executive Director), Bernard Tamosaitis (cellist and member of Canta Libra chamber ensemble), and Stanislav Kotyza (opera singer, construction company owner and co-founder of the nonprofit Harmony Foundation).

And best yet, proceeds from the event were donated to Guiding Eyes and Vacation Camp for the Blind.

Photos by Anja Porto

#7507 Rye Lions Club President Chris Shoemaker welcomed a big crowd.

#7606 Katie Rogers and Elizabeth Riccio performing an original dance composition to the tune of “Try Everything” from the film “Zootopia.”

#7517 Lauren Salamon sang Adele’s “Turning Tables”

#7549 Daniel Pellegrini with a number from the Broadway hit, “Dear Evan Hansen”

#7645 Violinist Alex Marino performed <5th Air Varie on a Theme by Karl Weigl, Opus 89, No. 5>

#7521 Male members of Rye High’s a cappella group, Rhythm on Rye

#7768 The Rhythm on Rye girls

#7671 Charlotte Burchetta performed Carrie Underwood’s “All American Girl.”

#7672 Hannah and Jonathan Lloyd performing a cello medley from the “Star Wars” soundtrack.

#7821 Pianist Hikari Tomizawa being congratulated after winning one of the competitions.


By Melanie Cane

In their first year as a member of the Women’s Interscholastic Hockey League of the Mid-Atlantic (WIHLMA), which is comprised of 11 teams, Rye Country Day School's Girls’ Ice Hockey team garnered first place and won the league championship tournament. The Wildcats achieved an 8-0 record in the league and shut out both teams in the Annual WIHLMA Tournament in Pottstown, Pennsylvania, over the February 18 weekend.

The Wildcats pummeled Princeton High School 8-0 for the semifinal win. They defeated Mater Dei Prep from New Jersey 4-0 for the championship title. Freshman Caroline Appleyard netted a hat trick. She scored her first goal shorthanded, off a breakout pass from Olivia Friedberg. For her second goal, she went with speed off a deflected pass. An empty net goal completed her hat trick. Ryan Hammil rounded out the scoring on a tip from a screen in front off Selia Coady shots from the point.

Wildcat goalie Lexi Secreto had 18 saves. Her teammates got off a total of 31 shots.

This was coach Elizabeth Bennett’s first year with the team. She attributes their success to a seamless blend of experience and leadership from the upperclassmen and energy and enthusiasm from the underclassmen and eighth graders.

“Senior captain Olivia Weaver and junior assistant captains Maddie Zuber and Katherine Holtby brought an intensity to the team that the younger girls bought into,” said Bennett. “Maddie Lyons, who attends Holy Child and has been on the Rye Country Day team since eighth grade, was very vocal and motivational for the girls. Kristen Brown provided quiet leadership and positivity that is unrivaled and fellow senior Elena Kim, a first-year player, a willingness to try something new, created an infectious return to the simple love of the game for many of the more experienced players.”

Bennett added, “The girls played their best when it really mattered. They made it very easy for me as a coach. It’s an easygoing group of girls who get along terrifically and come to practice ready to work hard and try new things.”

Rye Country Day School is the only high school in Westchester County with a girls’ ice hockey team, and it’s something to shout about.


The Wildcats with the WIHLMA championship trophy

Photo courtesy of Wendy Haft