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By Mitch Silver

A week ago, Rye Country Day led the Fordham Prep hockey team by 3-1 in the middle of the game. The home side was clearly the better team at even strength. Three days later, they were up on the Harvey School 2-0 after one. Again, they were in the driver’s seat. So how did they find themselves trailing by two to Fordham in the third? And how did they find themselves fighting for their lives in overtime against Harvey?

In a word...penalties. A hooking minor at 12:53 of the second period gave Fordham a power play. The Little Rams scored 40 seconds later. Another hook gave the visitors another 6-on-5 a minute later. They took only 17 seconds to tie the game at 3-3.

When Country Day’s senior center Will Dodge hit the twine at 5:52 of the period on an assist from junior Niklas Goulet, they were back on top. But the Wildcats couldn’t stand prosperity: they slashed and Fordham scored with 18 seconds to go in the period. Worse, the Ramlings netted another just eight-tenths of a second before the buzzer to go up 5-4.

The hole got deeper 40 seconds into the final period when Danny Heslin registered his fourth assist, setting up Colin Rucda to establish a two-goal margin for Fordham.

Okay, the easy way was out. So the Wildcats proceeded to score five goals the rest of the way to snatch a 9-7 victory from the jaws of defeat. Afterwards, Head Coach Brett Farson chose to look on the bright side.

“Of course no team wants to give up a touchdown, but there were key stretches of the game — including the last half of the third period — when we played well in our end. Fordham threw a lot of firepower at us; holding them scoreless for the final eight and a half minutes gave us a chance to stage a comeback. We got outstanding goaltending out there from senior Eddie Abrams.”

He added, “To come from behind three separate times and twice in the third period...those are the ones players and coaches remember.”

The Kardiac Kids were at it again against league foe Harvey. After netting another goal early in the second period to pad their lead to 3-0, the Wildcats gave up a pair in quick succession to the Cavaliers. When the team from Katonah scored with three minutes left in the game, they forced OT with, seemingly, all the momentum.

But these are the Not-the-Easy-Way Wildcats. First, Abrams had to slam the door in goal, which is exactly what he did. “Eddie Abrams stopped 42 shots; among them were some spectacular saves,” Coach Farson said. “When your goaltender takes a few away from the other team, that turns the tide in a close game.”

And when scorching hot junior winger Josh Cohen (five goals and five assists in two games) takes a beautiful feed from classmate Isaac Sacks from below the goal line and puts it in for the winner to keep his team undefeated in the Fairchester Athletic Association, all the bad stuff is forgotten.

The coach hastened to praise his defensemen after the contest. “Seniors Will Dodge and Harrison Kadish anchored the blue line for us. They’ve both put in outstanding effort in recent weeks, and will do anything to help the team.”

The Wildcats met South Kent School post-press time, and will host Greenwich High tomorrow afternoon at 2:45.

 

“The plan is usually to win a 2-1 game, but we’d rather be a team that can adapt to any type of hockey game and record a win in a high scoring affair as well.”

Sophomore Jake Oddi, alone on the keeper, scores against Fordham.

Junior Josh Cohen nets one of his three goals against Fordham Prep.

Four Rye High School seniors signed Letters of Intent to play Division I lacrosse next year. Pictured from left: Peter Chabot (Dartmouth College), Billy Chabot (Cornell University), Owen Hull (Syracuse University), and Margaret Mitchell (College of the Holy Cross), who were joined by Boys’ Varsity Coach Steven Lennon and Girls’ Varsity Coach Dennis Hurlie.

Fellow senior <<Carolina Sculti>> signed a Letter of Intent to swim at Stanford University next year. She trains with and competes for the Marlins Greenwich YMCA club team. In 2017, she competed in the Pan Am games in Victoria, Canada, winning gold in the 3 Meter Synchronized event. In 2016, Carolina competed on the Junior World Team in Russia and qualified for the Olympic Trials. In 2015, she competed in the Pan Am games in Cuba and captured gold in the 1 Meter event. Pictured: Carolina Sculti with RHS Principal Patricia Taylor, Director of Athletics Mike Arias, and Superintendent Dr. Eric Byrne.

 

By Melanie Cane

In their 72-58 home victory over Columbia Prep on January 24, the Gryphons put on a show of talent and intensity, and a wide range of play execution. Coach Mike Clancy called it their best effort of the year.

Holy Child hit the court running and quickly jumped out to a 17-7 lead, getting most of their points close to the basket. A go-to play that worked consistently was having the ball handler pass to Madi Warne under the basket, who scored. Victoria Hanley also drove to the basket, scoring with her signature hook shot and drawing fouls. Julia Valentino hit a three-pointer from the post.

At the start of the second quarter, Holy Child put on a press, but committed fouls on the throw in and gave up two three-pointers. After quickly regrouping, Kayla Hanley hit a layup and Warne scored on a fast break. Once they were back in control, the Gryphons showed off their passing skills, both short and long. Hanley hit a three-pointer from the post and Isabella Alaimo received a perfect pass from Kayla Henry all the way down court, sinking a layup. They repeated this play a few more times in the quarter and took a 37-25 lead into the half.

The Gryphons got more aggressive on their defense in the third quarter, stealing the ball for fast breaks, forcing walks, and drawing fouls off the Lions. The last quarter was a continuation of the third with Holy Child applying a lot of defensive pressure.

The unselfish sharing of the ball between these girls is evidenced in the scoring breakdown. Victoria Hanley had 19, Warne had 17, Valentino 12, and Kayla Hanley and Alaimo each scored nine.

Coach Clancy said this was the first game where his team put together a complete game, playing well in both halves. “We have been emphasizing running the ball since day one in practice, but this is the first time we did it consistently. We are at our best when we run.” He added, “This is one of the best passing teams I’ve ever coached. They are incredibly unselfish, and today I was thrilled that they saw their teammates so well and hit them for wide-open shots.”

Two days after beating Columbia Prep, Holy Child hosted and beat Hackley 58-49 in a thriller. The Gryphons beat Hackley again the following day at Fieldston 54-32. They are now 11-5 on the season.

Captions:

Isabella Alaimo on her way to the basket

Julia Valentino going for the steal

Victoria Hanley avoiding a Columbia Prep defender

Isabella Alaimo and Madi Warne set up for offensive rebound

 

 

 

 

 

By Melanie Cane

After two snow days and two intense practices, the Wildcats hosted powerhouse league opponent Morristown-Beard on January 10, and came out flying. Sophomore Charlotte Price got her team on the board first. Both teams were crowding Morristown’s goalie in front of the net. The puck rebounded off the goalie and Price grabbed it and tipped it in. Morristown-Beard responded quickly with a power play goal, but the Wildcats did not back down.

Knotted at one going into the second period, Rye Country Day scored early. Olivia Friedberg skated down the ice and passed across the goal crease to Selia Coady who tipped it in. Once again, the Crimsons responded with a power play goal. The score was tied 2-2 at the end of the period.

Two minutes into the third period, Coady scored again on a pass from Maddie Zuber. She shot and the puck tipped off the goalie’s stick and landed in the top shelf of the net. Morristown answered a few minutes later on a power play and the game ended tied at three.

Eighth-grade goalie M.K. Braun had a remarkable game and recorded 21 saves.

Coach Elizabeth Bennett praised her team for battling hard and keeping pressure on the Crimsons the entire game. The two things she says the team needs to work on are their defensive zone coverage and not letting up after they score.

The Wildcats are 1-1-1 in league play. They host Shady Side Academy January 19 and 20.

Caroline Keating chasing a loose puck.

 

 

 

The Westchester Chapter of the National Football Foundation, which has been honoring gridiron scholar-athletes for 45 years, singled out a football-playing Rye family when it chose its Golden Dozen team for 2017 at Westchester Country Club two weeks ago.

Billy Chabot, the featured running back for the Rye Garnets, was named as one of the top 12 football players in Westchester, while another two-way star, Peter Chabot, joined Brett Makar and Brandon Meyreles of Yorktown’s state champs, among others, in receiving Honorable Mention.

Rye Head Coach Dino Garr, an NFF member for 40 years, was delighted by the news. “Billy and Peter epitomize what this award is all about. Senior captains and team leaders, they brought their A games every minute of every day — not just in games, but in practice and off the field as well. I’m extremely proud of them.”

— Mitch Silver

Honorees Billy Chabot, left and Peter Chabot, right, flank fellow Garnet seniors Andy Bach, A.J. Thompson, and Owen Hull.

 

 

 

 

By Mitch Silver

“He’s the very model of what a student-athlete should be. Max is the team’s leader on and off the court, organizing activities that bring the team closer together. On the court, there’s never an eye roll when a teammate does something wrong, never a word of criticism — he just helps the others become better players.” Those are the words of Rye High Boys’ Basketball Head Coach John Aguilar, speaking of Garnets’ captain Max Samberg.

Recently, Samberg was named Con Edison Athlete of the Week for his play with the undefeated Rye team. Now he’s gained another honor by being named Rye High’s Athlete of the Month, an honor given by the Rye Lions Club and the school’s athletic department.

“People I’ve idolized ever since I’ve been here basketball players and those in other sports have been named Athletes of the Month, and now I’m one of the them. It’s very humbling,said Max.

Given to those students who excel on the court, in the classroom, and the community, the Lions Club Award also serves as a ticket to the year-end dinner at The Osborn in June, when Rye’s Athlete of the Year will be chosen by a vote of the student body.

Samberg has attained a 96 cumulative GPA while taking Advanced Placement courses in Calculus, Macro Economics, both World and U.S. History, and Psychology. Of that last course Max said, “It was really our teacher who made the subject as interesting and involving as it was for me. Ms. Kristen Warner is a wonderful teacher.”

So where does December’s winner go from here? Cornell University, which has accepted him Early Decision. “I don’t know if I’ll major in Psychology or Economics; I guess I’ll have to see. And while I’m thinking about it, I’ll see if I can get some playing time on their basketball team...the way my dad did when he went there.”

Don’t bet against it.