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Nine-Year-Old Mineola Chiefs Win Second Championship

The 9-year-old Mineola Chiefs football team repeated as the Nassau County Youth Football League Class A champions, beating the Rosedale Jets 6-0 on Nov. 18 in overtime.

After posting a record of 7-0-1, the Chiefs, led by head coach Mike Cavallaro, advanced to the Class A playoffs. They beat the Bellmore Braves 14-0 and advanced to the championship game, against the previously undefeated Jets.  Both teams ranked at the top in scoring during the regular season, but this game turned out to be a defensive battle.

Coach Paul Selhorn’s defense held the Jets to minimal yards for the entire game.  Led by Tyler Burke, James Kapralos and Joe Iadevaia, the Chiefs were able to hold the Jets high-powered offense in check.

Even when the Jets took the air, the Chiefs had solid coverage by Tommy Sluka and Luke Orbon, who also had a crucial interception.  On the other side of the ball, the Chiefs were able to move the ball with positive runs by Caleb Johnson and Patrick Selhorn.  However, they were never able to reach the end zone for a score.  

Regulation ended in a 0-0 tie, and for the second consecutive year, the Chiefs would have to win the championship in overtime. After winning the coin toss, the Jets received the ball with four chances to score from the Mineola 10-yard line.

As the ball was snapped on third down, Robert Dimilia was able to knock the ball loose for a fumble. Henry Villa recovered the ball, giving the Chiefs four chances to win the championship.

Down to their last chance on fourth down from the one-yard line, Sluka handed the ball to Caleb Johnson, who was able to break through the defensive line for the touchdown and seal the championship.

The players and parents thanked Cavallaro, Selhorn, Dave Burke and Mike Bencivenga for their service.

News

In a typical Long Island community packed with houses and backyards, there are a couple of acres of open land of community gardens where people are growing basil and dahlias and roses and cabbages—people like Terry Dunckey of Westbury and Peg Woerner of Great Neck, tending their small plots and helping to promote sustainable and organic practices.

East Meadow Farm, off Merrick Avenue, is owned by Nassau County and operated by Cornell Cooperative Extension (CCE) of Nassau County. Previously it was a family-owned farm that was purchased by the county through the Environment Bond Act Program, a $150 million program that called for, among several mandates, the preservation of 400 acres of open space. In 2009, CCE of Nassau was awarded the lease to the land and in January 2012 took possession of the property. East Meadow Farm is a place where we can get the best advice on how to make our gardens grow without harming the earth. Part of the CCE’s original proposal was the establishment of a farmer’s market and, now, the market is open two days a week, a place to purchase organic vegetables and flowers during the growing season.

Drivers—get ready to slow down. Nassau County is currently in the process of installing school zone speed cameras in an effort to enhance safety by encouraging drivers to travel with caution, as well as support law enforcement efforts to crack down on violators and prevent accidents caused by speeding.

Nassau County officials say they’re still investigating locations in the Mineola School District, while leaning towards installing cameras near the North Side or Willets Road schools in the East Williston School District. Cameras could begin operation in September.


Sports

Nobody wants to make excuses, but sometimes when the injury bug hits, it’s impossible to overcome. Mineola Mustangs football head coach Dan Guido, entering his 28th season at helm, knows the injuries were the cause for their first-round defeat at the hands of the West Hempstead Rams last November.

“There was too many injuries on the offensive line last season,” said Guido. “It was supposed to be our strength and it ended up being a weak link by the end of the season.”

Even with those injuries, the Mustangs went 4-4 during the regular season.

The BU15 Mineola Revolution were crowned champions of the Roar at the Shore Tournament 2014 in West Islip on Aug. 10. After dropping the opener 2-0 against North Valley Stream, Mineola bounced back to beat Freeport Premiere 2-1.

The Revolution’s offense exploded in the third game as they beat West Islip 7-0. Mineola’s final game pitted them against Quickstrike FC, which entered the contest without a loss and within a point of winning the tournament.


Calendar

Zoning Meeting

Thursday, Aug. 28

Mineola Village Meeting

Wednesday, Sept. 3

School Board Meeting

Thursday, Sept. 4



Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com