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Sports Archives — The Altamont Enterprise, May 1, 2008


Dutch boys making their mark on the track

By Tim Matteson

GUILDERLAND — The Guilderland boys’ track-and-field team is off to a good start and looking to get better.

The Dutchmen have a 5-1 record so far this season and have done well at a couple of invitational meets this season.

“It’s a good start to the season,” said coach Dave Kosier. “Our only loss was to Colonie and they are a powerhouse. They are pretty tough. But a third of our team was not back from vacation the day before for practice, so we did not run everybody and we had to move some people. Not that we would have beaten them, but it would have been closer.”

Guilderland did win the Ballston Spa invitational earlier this spring and competed well at the Anthony Luciano Invitational in Hudson Falls this past Saturday.

The Dutch finished second at the meet with 64 points. Burnt Hills won the event with 75 points.

“Nice speed”

Guilderland is led this spring by senior Roland Graves. Graves won the 3,200-meter race in Hudson Falls on Saturday and is one of the top runners in the section in that event. He also competes in the 1,600.

“He had a nice time for early in the season,” Kosier said. “He ran a 4:21 flat at Ballston Spa in the 1,600. That’s a nice time. There were some good runners in that race.”

Graves is also moving up the charts in the 1,600-meter run.

“He’s broken his own personal record,” Kosier said. “He’s fourth all-time in Guilderland history. It’s early. He put down a pretty impressive time for early in the season.”

Senior Yifan Chen is a jack-of-all-trades for the Dutchmen. His specialty is the jumping events and has a 42 foot, 9 inch leap in the triple jump this spring.

“He is about ninth in school history,” Kosier said.

Chen also runs the 400- and 200-meter sprints.

Senior Ethan Doak is out for track for the first time.

“He was on the cross-country team,” Kosier said. “He is able to do a couple of different things. Track is a nice sport for him.”

Doak can run the 100 and 200 and also competes on the 4x400-meter relay.

Junior Mike Heiserman is a veteran on the team and is making some big contributions this spring.

“He’s been on the team the past couple of years,” Kosier said. “This year he is stepping up. He’s popping some nice times in the 200.”

The Dutchmen have a lot of good sprinters this spring.

“We have nice speed,” Kosier said. “We have been blessed with distance runners for a number of years, and we still are. We are complementing them with good sprinters. There is no hesitation with who we put in the 100, 200, and 400 as well as the relays.”

Vaulters and jumpers

The Dutchmen also have some solid field performers as well.

Senior Billy Reed competes in the pole vault.

“He’s been vaulting well,” Kosier said. “He’s been at 12 feet all year long. It’s another technique thing. And to do it well this early without a lot of opportunities, 12 feet is good. We’ll work from there. It’s a nice starting spot. We’ll get good things from Billy Reed this year.”

Reed can also compete in the 200-meter race, the 4x100-meter relay, and the triple jump.

“He’s got some wheels on him, too,” Kosier said. “You need that for the pole vault. You need to attack the pit and get into the air. He’s a nice little weapon for us.”

Junior Andrew Oteng-Baah, a transfer from Canada, was hurt in the first meet of the year and is working his way back.

“We are looking for big things from him in the jumping events,” Kosier said. “He’s a good long jumper and a strong triple jumper.”

Oteng-Baah is part of the depth the Dutchmen have in the jumping events.

“We have 20 guys over 40 feet,” Kosier said. “And we have a bunch that are at 38 and 39. Andrew is off the basketball team. He is doing nice jumping. And he is doing a nice job off the injuries.”

“Distance guys look promising”

Senior Kevin Sheehan is running in the distance races and contributing well.

“The distance guys look promising,” Kosier said. “We have a good core of distance guys. That comes from the success of Brian Rhodes-Devey and other guys,” he said of a nationally ranked runner now at the University of Texas. “These guys have been overshadowed, but Roland has stepped it up already as has Kevin Sheehan. He’s ran a 4:39 in the mile and a sub 10 [minutes] in the two mile.”

“Young guys coming up”

Kosier also has a talented group of younger runners who make the future of the program good.

The freshman 4x100 relay team broke the freshman record at Guilderland.

“It’s nice for them to knock off a team that had Nelson English and others on it,” Kosier said. “The record was 48.1 and in their first invitational they run a 47.5.”

DaShawn Gates, Sam Segal, eighth-grader Malcolm Nelson, and Shawn Playford make up the 4x100 team.

Gates is especially promising.

“He’s stood out,” Kosier said. “We’ve tried to be patient with him, but we’ve seen him enough times to move him up to the varsity level.”

Playford also competes in the high jump and is an alternate on the varsity 4x100 relay team.

“We have a nice group of young kids,” Kosier said. “We look at the seniors and what they are doing and we’ll be disappointed when they leave, because they have done a lot for the program. But we know we have young guys coming up behind them.”

“Balanced team”

Two of those upperclassmen are junior Gianni Vassate and senior Jake King.

Vassate won the 800-meter run at Ballston Spa and King was a close third.

“He was right behind him but ended up in third,” Kosier said. “It was nice to get a 1-3 in an invitational situation.”

Senior Captain Dave Slingerland is a key member of the team. He competes as a sprinter and in the 110-meter high hurdles.

“He’s one of those guys that fills many spots and you have to cross his name off in events because you can only do four,” Kosier said.

Ian Tapler, a junior, competes in the hurdles and set a personal record time of 15.6 seconds in the 110 hurdles.

“It is another technique thing and that’s a good time for so early in the season,” Kosier said. “The school record is 14.6. That’s pretty quick but he has two years to do it. We’ll keep that carrot dangling in front of him. He’ll keep working at it.”

Senior Mike Edmonds has been a solid competitor in many events.

“He did indoor for us and he’s a nice guy to have around,” Kosier said. “We can put him in a lot of sprints. He is one of the better high jumpers.”

The goal for the Dutch is to improve in the Suburban Council and to get a better spot at the sectional meet, which Guilderland will host again this year.

Last year, the Dutch finished fourth at the sectional meet, but did win the Gold Division of the Suburban Council with an 8-3 record.

“We’re a pretty balanced team,” Kosier said. “Especially if we get everybody healthy and on track on the same day. With a big group like this, I’d say we have 83 or 84 kids, it’s hard to keep everybody healthy at the same time.

“We still have a couple of big challenges ahead of us. Shenendehowa is always tough and Shaker will be tough. We’re hoping to win our division again in the Suburban Council.”


Dutchmen hit mid-season slide, drop four straight

By Tim Matteson

GUILDERLAND — The Guilderland baseball team has hit a mid-season funk and Coach Doug LaValley believes his team will come out of it.

After last weekend’s games, the Dutchmen have a 5-5 overall record and a 3-2 mark in the Suburban Council.

“We had a tough weekend,” LaValley said on Monday. “Yesterday, I threw some JV guys. We hit the ball really well. We’ll figure it out. We just need our pitchers to throw good games.”

The Dutchmen lost on Friday to Massapequa of Long Island, 13-10. Massapequa is the number-one ranked team in the state.

In that contest, the Dutchmen pitchers struggled with their control and the Chiefs took advantage.

Guilderland starter Jason Westervelt, a senior heading to pitch at West Virginia University next year, gave up five walks in the second inning that led to seven Massapequa runs. He walked three consecutive batters that led to a grand slam by Mike Mandarino.

“It was just one inning,” LaValley said of Friday’s game. “Out of 11 total walks, six or seven scored. With games coming up on the weekend, we needed him to pitch through it. He had to give us four innings.”

The Dutch were solid in the field and swung the bats well against Massapequa, even without one of their top players.

Clean-up hitter and College of Saint Rose bound Andrew Simpson was injured in Friday’s loss to Columbia and missed the games over the weekend.

“I’ve had more injuries this year than I ever had since coming here,” LaValley said. “We are not 100 percent by no means. Guys are getting healthier and starting to play.”

“A little lackadaisical”

Massapequa led 9-2 in the fourth inning, but the Dutch chipped away at the lead.

Guilderland scored one run in the bottom half of the fourth frame and three in the bottom half of the fifth that made the score 12-6. The Dutch scored two more runs in the sixth inning and answered one Massapequa run with two in the bottom of the seventh, making the game close.

Senior lead-off hitter and center fielder Nick Ranalli scored three runs in the contest. He hit a solo home run and hit a single for the Dutch.

Steven Anderson scored two runs as did Pat Quinn. Jimmy Quinn doubled and scored a run.

LaValley was also not pleased with the way his team started the game even though the Dutch got two runs in the first inning.

“I thought we could’ve come with more intensity,” the coach said. “We didn’t get into the game until the fourth and fifth inning when we thought we had a chance. The only thing I want, is for my players to give a 100-percent effort.

“I’m not sure we gave a lot of effort on Saturday,” LaValley added. “We were a little lackadaisical. Our schedule is tough. But that is what we want. We want to be challenged. We haven’t played a complete game yet.”

Mixed results

Guilderland dropped an 18-10 decision to Columbia at the LaSalle Wood Bat Tournament on Sunday. The Dutchmen lost to LaSalle, 7-2, on Saturday.

The Dutchmen also lost to Columbia, 11-7, on Thursday on a seventh-inning grand slam by Patrick Puentes.

“Thursday, we came out with intensity,” LaValley said. “It was a good game, but then we get the injury [to Simpson]. That was a good baseball game for high school. The best player we’ve seen all year and one of the best in the league got us.”

The Dutchmen did beat rival Colonie, 5-4, last Tuesday.

“We had 10 walks in that game,” LaValley said. “We were fortunate to win that game. We need to put a game altogether.”

The Dutchmen’s game against Niskayuna was postponed until Tuesday due to rain.

The Dutch probably could use a day off as they prepare for the second half of the season and fix what ails them.

“I think we need to get some pitching to make a turn for the better,” LaValley said. “They have to rely more on the defense and that will help shut them down. But it’s not all the pitchers. We still have to make plays behind them.”

“Big games coming up”

The Dutch hosted Saratoga on Wednesday and then travel downstate to play in the Clarkstown South Tournament. Guilderland plays Totenville of Staten Island in the opening round. The Dutch also have games scheduled for Saturday and Sunday.

“We have some pretty big games coming up,” LaValley said.

Three of the losses this week were in non-league games. LaValley hopes his team has learned from them as it prepares for a big stretch of league contests coming up.

“We didn’t play those games to lose,” LaValley said. “I would rather play like this now, than later.”


Guilderland laxwomen continue to roll, now 12-0

By Tim Matteson

GUILDERLAND — The Guilderland girls’ lacrosse team remained unbeaten this season, winning several games impressively.

The Lady Dutch are now 12-0 on the season as they head down the home stretch.

Guilderland beat Nanuet of Section I, 16-8, on Saturday.

Bridget Daley led the Lady Dutch with four goals. Danielle Tetreault scored two goals and had three assists.

Amanda Best scored three goals and had an assist for Guilderland. Abbey Fashouer scored three goals and had one assist, Courtney Davis scored two goals, Jen Madsen had a goal and an assist, and Chelsey Newman scored a goal.

Amanda Santandrea made six saves in goal for the Lady Dutch.

Warriors whacked

The Dutch beat Niskayuna for the second time this season, 16-8, in a night game at Niskayuna High School last Thursday.

Madsen scored four goals and had an assist to pace the Lady Dutch. Tetreault scored three goals and had an assist; Daley scored two goals and had an assist; Davis, Newman, and Best each scored two goals; and Fashouer scored one goal.

Santandrea made 11 saves in goal for the Lady Dutch, who led 10-4 at halftime.

Bethlehem beaten

Guilderland dominated rival Bethlehem last Tuesday. The Lady Dutch led 11-3 at halftime en route to 18-6 win over the Eagles.

Madsen scored six goals to lead the Dutch. She also assisted on one goal.

Newman scored four goals and had an assist, Daley scored three goals, Fashouer scored twice and had an assist, Davis added a goal and an assist, as did Tetreault and Best.

Santrandrea made three saves in goal for the Lady Dutch.

Hat trick

The Lady Dutch beat three league opponents the week before.

Guilderland beat Shenendehowa, 19-6, on April 16. The Dutch then beat Ballston Spa, 25-2, on April 17, and then beat Columbia, 21-5, on April 18.

“It has been a nice first half of the year and this week we continued to play well,” said Guilderland Coach Gary Chatnik. “Everyone got quality time and scoring was spread throughout the team. We had a lot of players gain a lot of experience and that will help us as we get closer to sectionals.”

Ali DeRizzo had three goals against Ballston Spa and Jenna Crupi scored three against Columbia.

The defense also scored a few goals as Molly Barker, Amy Branchini, Marissa Page, Corinne Chatnik, Lauren Cagino, Hannah Scott, and Casey Gerety each got a tally.

“The defense has played well all year and it is nice to see them get their names in the paper with goals,” Chatnik said. “They played well on offense and had a little fun doing it.”

Santandrea made a combined 14 goals during the week.

Home stretch

The Lady Dutch are in the home stretch of games. They played Shaker High School on Wednesday. The Dutch then play Averill Park on Friday and then travel to Saratoga on Monday.

Guilderland wraps up the regular season with games against Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake on May 7 and Shen on May 9.


Voorheesville team could be coach’s best ever

By Tim Matteson

VOORHEESVILLE — In the six years he has coached, Steve Relyea says this might be the best track team he has seen at Voorheesville.

The boys’ team has a 5-0 record as of last week and the girls’ team has a number of talented athletes.

“The boys’ team has won two league meets,” Relyea said. “Two weeks ago we handled Cohoes, Watervliet, and Waterford. Yesterday [Tuesday] we beat Schalmont and Cobleskill. The girls beat Schalmont, but lost to Cobleskill, 71-70.”

The Blackbirds are also competing well in invitational meets, Relyea said.

“We are getting individual success and success in the relays,” Relyea said. “Things are going really well.”

Boys’ team

As of last week, senior Mackey Lloyd was the top distance runner in Section II.

Lloyd has been dominant in the 3,000- and 3,200-meter races in the early season.

“He is having an excellent year in the distance events,” Relyea said.

Lloyd also teams up with senior Ryan Allison and juniors Nathan Bub and Ian Powell to form a superb 4x800-meter relay team.

“They are not just beating Colonial Council teams or Class CC teams,” Relyea said. “They are beating everybody. It’s nice for a small school to have a chance against larger schools. It shows the hard work that we do.”

Bub and Powell are also strong competitors in the 400- and 800-meter races. Allison is strong in the 800 and 1,600, Relyea said.

Senior Sean Fitzmaurice has shown a lot of improvement in throwing the discus this spring.

“Every time out, he’s getting a personal record,” Relyea said. “He’s breaking his own personal record. At our meet Tuesday, he threw the discus 25 feet, 7-and-a-half inches. He’s the best discus thrower they’ve had here in a long, long time. The Voorheesville record was set in the early ’70s. But Sean will be in the top 10 all-time.”

Josh Glover, a senior, is unbeaten in the pole vault in dual meets this season. He is also the top long jumper for the Blackbirds.

Senior Anthony Locciasano has been impressive in the triple jump this spring, Relyea said.

“He has been one or two in every meet,” the coach said. “Anthony is also our top high jumper.”

Pat Jones is working his way back from an injury to be one of the top sprinters in the area. He runs the 100- and 200-meter races.

“He is coming off of shoulder surgery,” Relyea said. “It has taken him awhile to get back. Out of the blocks, he’s not as fast as he was. But it’s starting to come back. He’s working hard to regain his spot as one of the top sprinters in the council.”

Junior Ryan Dimmitt is a newcomer to the team and competes in the sprints and jumps.

“It’s unfortunate that he has only come out for his junior year,” Relyea said. “If he had come out earlier and I had a chance to work with him, he would be one of the top jumpers in the area. Hopefully, we’ll do a lot this year and he’ll have a good senior year.”

Junior Will Miranda competes in the middle-distance running events.

“He has matured into a very good middle-distance runner,” Relyea said.

Newcomer Jason Slingerland, a freshman, is competing in the discus and sprints this spring.

“We’ve really got a good group of guys,” Relyea said. “After putting in long years from ninth grade, the seniors are seeing good benefits.”

The Blackbirds finished 8-1 last year in the Colonial Council, with the lone loss coming against Lansingburgh.

“We are looking to avenge that this season,” Relyea said. “We want to improve from third place in the Colonial Council and runner-up at sectionals.”

Girls’ team

The Lady Blackbirds are led by seniors Chantel Little and Hilary Edmunds.

Little is one of the best 400-meter runners in the area, Relyea said. Edmunds has been an outstanding distance runner for the Blackbirds the past four years, Relyea added.

With classmate Grace Giapaglia, they help form a strong 4x800-meter relay team.

Senior Lizzie Dawson is competing in the triple jump and the 400-meter hurdles.

Junior Seneca Gray is one of the best hurdlers in the section, Relyea said. She also runs a leg of the 4x400-meter relay. Little, Giapaglia and Carrie Gorka, a sophomore, are part of the relay and top 400 runners.

Ninth-grader Caitlin Abelseth is a newcomer to the team. She runs sprint races for the Lady Blackbirds but, because she is on the varsity softball team at Voorheesville, she can only compete at invitational meets on weekends.

“It’s unfortunate she can’t do dual meets,” Relyea said. “She is a great contributor at the invitationals.”

Junior Chelsea LeFevre has progressed in the long jump and has jumped over 15 feet, Relyea said.

Zoe Edmunds, a sophomore, competes in the distance events like her older sister, Hilary.

Laura Sowalskie, a ninth-grader, has moved up from the modified team and is competing in the pole vault as well as middle distance races.

Jane Pritchard, also a ninth-grader, competes in the triple jump and sprints.

Eighth-grader Michelyn Little runs the 1,500- and 3,000-meter races.

“The team this year is a lot deeper than it has been in the past,” Relyea said. “It is stronger than any other team I’ve had. It was a disappointing loss to Cobleskill, but we have been beating teams easily that we had problems with in the past.”

The Blackbirds on both the boys’ and girls’ side show much promise, Relyea said.

“The numbers, aren’t a great showing,” Relyea said. “There is a lot of great talent in our kids. This is not the largest team I’ve had. We are down a few in number, but the amount of talent we have is outstanding.”


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