Written by Ronald Scaglia, firstname.lastname@example.org Friday, 08 February 2013 00:00The Massapequa Varsity Rifle Team is in the midst of a very successful season. The team will head to the Nassau County championships next week, after finishing 9-1 in air rifle competition and winning the division title. The team also went 3-1 in smallbore competition with one match remaining. Alex Norden is in his eighth season as the coach of the team. He says a special combination of skills is necessary for success in this sport, which is also an Olympic event.
“You have to be mentally disciplined,” he says. “It’s all about you and being able to control your mind. You have to train your body to do something it doesn’t want to do which is to stand still.”
Shooters in air rifle competitions, aim at paper targets 10m away. Of the six shooters on the team, only one, Chris Esposito, is a senior. He has been an All-County shooter the past two years, and was also a state qualifier last year. His coach had praise for Esposito, who is also a team captain.
“He’s one of those rare kids at this age who just knows how to talk to people,” the coach said. “Often I use him as an assistant coach. I can have him help the other less experienced members.”
Thomas Sarant is the team’s other captain. Both he and Esposito are among the leaders in the county in air rifle. They both qualified for the Junior Olympics. Norden also had high praise for Sarant.
“He’s probably the most focused on the team,” he said. “He works at his craft harder than anyone I’ve ever seen.”
Matt McKeown was also a state qualifier last year in small ball. His coach said that he is a very steady, levelheaded athlete who is very good at helping other members of the team.
These three young men comprise half of Massapequa’s Varsity Rifle Team, with three young ladies comprising the other half. One interesting aspect of this sport is that males and females compete on an equal level. Erin Kohler, a junior, is quite skilled in the sport. In addition, she is also a very accomplished viola player.
“Her discipline and dedication translates beautifully in being able to perform under pressure,” Norden says.
Completing the team are Julie Kapuveri and Melanie Valentin. Both are in their first season on the varsity team, and their coach has high praise for their ability. He says both of them have improved dramatically and contribute significantly to the team’s success. They also still have a great deal of potential, and since they are only in their first year, Norden is expecting them to get even better.
Indeed, both the present and the future, look very promising for the Massapequa Varsity Rifle Team.
Saturday, 08 March 2014 00:00
With kids today obsessed with all the latest electronic gaming gadgets — the Playstation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo 3DS, and the like — you’d think that the comparatively antiquated concept of pushing a piece of plastic along a sheet of cardboard would be eschewed by your average teenager; however, judging by the crowd of kids at the Massapequa Public Library’s Board Game Café, this actually may not be the case.
Young Adult Services librarian Peter Cirona, who created the Board Game Café at the library’s Central Avenue branch (in addition to a whole host of other young adult programs), said that it’s a great way for kids to socialize and play some classic board games in a fun and friendly environment.
Friday, 07 March 2014 00:00
On Feb. 27, parents in the Levittown, East Meadow, Massapequa and Farmingdale school districts came together for an informal pannel discussion on the New York State Education Department and the implementation of the state Common Core Learning Standards. Panelists included New York State Assemblyman Thomas McKevitt, Jeanette Deutermann of the Long Island Opt Out Facebook page, and former public school teacher David Greene, who came to the Farmingdale Public Library to talk with local parents about key concerns and questions with the curriculum.
Outspoken parent and founder of the Long Island Opt Out movement, Deutermann, delved into some of the factors behind what led to the state’s adoption of the Common Core, and how the state education department cites High School graduation rates as its reasoning behind the curriculum.
Thursday, 06 March 2014 09:47
One of Major League Soccer’s top front office executives has many fond memories of growing up in the Long Island Junior Soccer League (LIJSL). Bill Manning, the President of Western Conference champion Real Salt Lake and the club’s field, Rio Tinto Stadium, played for the LIJSL Select Team from 1979 to ‘83 as well as the Massapequa Soccer Club from 1972 to ‘83.
Manning’s Massapequa teams had virtually the same players from Under-10 to Under-19, but kept changing their name depending on who their coach was. He played for the Massapequa Flying Dutchmen (coached by Kurt Knoblauch), the Massapequa Bugs (Dick Roche), the Massapequa Cosmos (Jerry Lyons) and the Massapequa Bulls (coached by his father, also named Bill Manning). The Bulls might have lost in the Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association (ENYYSA) State Open Cup finals to B/W Gottschee in overtime in 1983, but his teams won the LIJSL division championship in 1974, ‘76 and ‘79 plus the Long Island Cup in 1980 and ‘83.
Thursday, 27 February 2014 10:58
If the games were played on paper, Massapequa would’ve had no shot. The Chiefs faced a tall order last week playing Elmont, which boasted a 12-3 record and four premier scorers. They gave a tremendous effort, but ultimately had their season cut short, 69-62, despite Alex Cosenza leading the scoring with 29 points.
“I can’t ask for anything else from these guys,” said Head Coach Matt Voigt. “I am so proud of them. I applaud their efforts,”