Friday, 01 January 2010 00:00
The Sons of Italy-Columbus Lodge #2143 Golden Lions held their year-end award ceremony. Jeff Steinberg’s triple-crown performance earned him his third Joe Bermudez MVP award. Jeff also received his second Gold Glove award for sparkling defense in centerfield. Players from the past were honored as Jeff Saviano and Lou Roseto were inducted into the team’s hall of fame.
Jeff Saviano, a Massapequa resident and a charter member of the Golden Lions, wrapped up a distinguished ten seasons (1993-2002) having won nine championships in twelve tournament appearances and is currently 10th on the team’s all-time tournament games played list with 27. Jeff wore jersey #22, often kidding to be twice the player than his older brother Dave who wore #11. The four-time AFSC and McDonald’s Sports Festival participant was also known as “the Rock” because of his resemblance to a professional wrestler.
The Rock’s finest season was arguably in 2000 when he helped the Golden Lions to an impressive late season surge in the South Shore Softball League. That same year the southpaw smashed four doubles in a championship game and took home MVP honors at the Easter Seals Softball Classic. He also helped the Lions reached the finals in two other tournaments.
As a member of the Columbus Lodge, Jeff Saviano frequently volunteered at the Nassau County Special Olympics, the Big Brother Big Sister Bowl-a-thon and the lodge’s annual Italian Feast & Festival and Vegas nights. Saviano’s overall commitment to his teammates and to his community makes a worthy selection for this year’s Golden Lions Softball Hall of Fame induction.
Louis “Sweet Lou” Roseto inducted into the Hall seems long over due. For over a decade, (1988-1997, & 2001), the diminutive Roseto roamed leftfield or pitched. Lou’s natural speed and ability to get on-base made him a perfect “top-of-the-lineup” hitter. His presence spearheaded the team’s success in the 2007 OSIA championship showdown with the rival Gulotta Lodge. At the end of the ’97 season, nagging injuries and aches and pains led to his retirement.
After a three-year layoff, Roseto returned for one final season; this time as a pitcher. Quickly, Roseto established himself as the team’s most reliable hurler and one of the best in the Nassau County Men’s Softball League. True to his word, he hung up the cleats at the end of the season. Now, eight years later Roseto’s steady glove in leftfield, his pitching supremacy, and his skills as a leadoff hitter have opened the doors to the Golden Lions’ Softball Hall of Fame.
Receiving honorable mention in this year’s HOF balloting was Charles “Chucky” Diamond. Diamond pitched for eight seasons (1991-1998) with Columbus Lodge. His quick-pitch bowling style approach was well suited for Sunday morning pick-up games. Chuck’s pitching was never more dominant than at the ’97 OSIA softball challenge when he held his opponents to five runs over a two-game sweep. The former Farmingdale resident now resides in Florida.
The Columbus Lodge is a not-for-profit fraternal organization and member of the Order Sons of Italy in America. Now in its 45th year, the lodge offers its members various social and recreational activities and its charitable donations to local charities and scholarship program have made it a fabric in the community. To become a member of this dynamic organization, one may contact Gary Caparco at 799-2613.