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Vol. 13/Number 9

Report: Fraud, theft by golf manager By CHRISTIAN FALCONE ASSOCIATE EDITOR chris@hometwn.com

The results of a far-reaching probe into the Rye Golf Club show calculated actions by the club’s former manager, who the report accuses of stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars from the city over a sixyears span. The investigation, which spanned nearly five months, was released on Feb. 27 and outlined orchestrated efforts by former manager Scott Yandrasevich to run numerous shell companies, which, in turn, appear to have bilked the city out of money since 2007. Without many checks and balances over Yandrasevich’s management of the city-owned golf club, the former manager was able to funnel money from the club to his shell companies unhindered and with a minimal paper trail. Some residents

have questioned how the city’s management oversight personnel failed to recognize Yandrasevich’s alleged misdeeds. The case has been referred to the county district attorney’s office. Lucian Chalfen, a spokesman for the district attorney, said the office is in the process of reviewing the matter. It is likely that a criminal probe will soon begin. Mayor Douglas French, a Republican, said the investigation showed that Yandrasevich was able to manipulate the system for more than six years with a scheme that spanned many roles and individuals. “It is the city’s Madoff moment where wrongdoing went unnoticed, and where there wasn’t one break in the chain, but several,” French said. The mayor said the city would REPORT, continued on page 14

Moving trucks carried off the last of Scott Yandrasevich’s belongings from his house this week. The former golf club manager, who resigned in mid-January, agreed to vacate the city grounds by the end of February. File photo

March 1, 2013

Hitting new heights The Broadway hit “In the Heights” has come to the Westchester Broadway Theatre. Leads Gizel Jimenez, as Vanessa, and Perry Young, as Usnavi, bring the house down while Greg Laucella, as Sonny, and FaTye, as Benny, look on. For more, see page 10. Photo/John Vecchiolla

Gas corporation set to buy 1037 BPR for $5.6M By CHRISTIAN FALCONE ASSOCIATE EDITOR chris@hometwn.com

The city plans to sell off its 1037 Boston Post Road property for $5.6 million. The pending sale was expected to be discussed publicly at the City Council meeting on Wednesday, after press time. The bidder selected by the City Council is Bill Wolf Petroleum Corporation, a real estate holdings and gasoline distribution company based in Long Island. City Attorney Kristen Wilson said the commercial real estate market provided a highly competitive bidding process and several offers. The decision to accept the offer came at the discretion of the City Council, according to Wilson. “There was no slam-dunk win-

ner,” Wilson said about the process. “Each proposal had different bells and whistles so it was hard to say.” Late last year, the City Council decided that it would put the controversial city-owned property on the market for both sale and lease, hiring a Stamford, Conn. brokerage firm called CBRE to handle the listing. The city also chose to extend the lease agreement with Lester’s through the end of 2013. The lease with Lester’s was set to expire on March 31 of this year. Rye collects roughly $23,000 per month in rent from the clothing retailer. The Lester’s lease would not be impacted by the looming sale of the property, according to the city attorney. The contract with CBRE stipulates that the city pays a 4 percent

fee, or $224,000, of the sale price to the firm for facilitating the deal. From the city’s perspective, it remains unclear what the buyer intends to do with the property upon taking over ownership. The gasoline company leases a chain of retail gas stations, leaving some to wonder whether Bill Wolf Petroleum envisions transforming the site into a gas station. Under the city’s zoning code, a gas station would be permitted at the 1037 Boston Post Road location, however it seems as if the company might be interested in some type of high-end retail use, the city attorney said. “There is no known use,” she said. “They claim they don’t know what the ultimate end use will be. It could 1037, continued on page 7

Conservative to primary county executive By CHRISTIAN FALCONE ASSOCIATE EDITOR chris@hometwn.com

appealed in court, but upheld. It ultimately didn’t matter, however, as Astorino pulled off a historic upset and ousted Spano by a wide While Democrats attempt to portray the margin. county executive as a far-right extremist, a But the party line is likely even more crucial New Rochelle challenger has come forward to the Republican this time around. Due to an saying Rob Astorino hasn’t been conservative ongoing feud with the county Independence enough. Party chair Dr. Giulio Cavallo, Astorino is not At a Feb. 22 press conference in front of expected to carry that line like he did in 2009. the county Board If the county execuof Elections offices, tive doesn’t secure the Kurt Colucci, a regConservative line, his istered Conservative chances could be hamParty member and Tea pered since Democrats Party supporter, anin the county outnumnounced his candidacy ber their GOP counfor county executive; terparts by roughly he plans to seek the 100,000 registered Conservative Party line voters. through a primary. Within hours of “My campaign is not Colucci’s announceabout Rob Astorino,” ment, Astorino’s New Rochelle’s Colucci campaign released said. “The focal point Facebook postings of my message is ‘we from Colucci’s father, don’t have to live like Kurt Colucci Sr., that this.’” depicted Gov. Andrew A self-described Cuomo as a nazi. The conservative-libertarAstornio campaign ian, Colucci—who said that serious canKurt Colucci said he supported didates for public Astorino in the 2009 race—labeled the county office must reject the politics of extremism, executive’s first term in office a failure, stat- and asked Colucci to denounce the images. ing Astorino could have done a better job “Until that is done, we will not dignify Mr. cutting the county budget. Astorino has been Colucci’s candidacy with a comment. There is criticized for his decision to borrow money to no room in Westchester County for this type offset the tax rate in the county’s 2013 budget, of hatred,” said Jessica Proud, spokesperson while holding true to a promise not to raise for the Friends of Rob Astorino. taxes during his first term in office. Colucci Jr. said the intent of the message “Rob borrowed money but did it under the was to disorient the voters. He said the postguise of holding the line on taxes,” Colucci ings were distasteful and not in line with his said. “In the long run, you pay more with in- views adding that his father was absent from terest. It’s the long-term consequences of his his life for 30 years. decisions.” With Westchester continuing to hold the Colucci, 36, also criticized the county ex- title of highest taxed county in the nation, ecutive for his political appointments. He Colucci said those rates are causing residents referenced the appointment of Hugh Fox, the to flee the state. The candidate said he would county Conservative Party chairman, to a po- look to cut appointees and salaries and tackle sition with the county Department of Public the long-term consequences of pensions. He Works after Fox retired from the Yonkers Fire blamed it on incumbent elected officials and Department. Fox’s new position earns him a their visions of higher office. “There is no insix-figure salary in addition to his state pen- centive to take the fight to Albany,” he said. sion from his time with the Yonkers fire deOn the other hand, the candidate sees partment. himself as a political outsider and his run is “It was the biggest political payoff in a “one-shot deal,” he said. Colucci did flirt Westchester history,” said Colucci, who works with a run at county legislator in 2011 as an as a project manager for Chief Fire Prevention Independence Party candidate but ultimately & Mechanical, a Mount Vernon-based me- backed out before the vote. chanical engineering company. “There are so Colucci also identifies himself with many people with unnecessary positions to Westchester’s Tea Party movement. He spoke give political paybacks.” at several rallies in 2008-2009 and authored a Coincidentally, the Conservative Party book, titled “A Taxslaves Manifesto.” endorsement was the subject of controversy The battle will surely be an uphill climb during the last county executive race when against a popular incumbent who supporters Astorino, a registered Republican, was passed say has followed through on his message of over by the party in favor of Democrat Andy lowering taxes, shrinking the size of county Spano amid accusations from Conservative government and making Westchester more Party members of backroom dealings with COLUCCI, continued on page 13 former party chair Gail Burns. The matter was

4 • THE RYE SOUND SHORE REVIEW • March 1, 2013

C ommunity Briefs

Rye Historical Society Free Program

“Contributions of Women to Peacebuilding Operations” On March 10, from 3 p.m.–5 p.m., the Rye Historical Society and the Westchester chapter of the United Nations Association of the UNA invite the public to celebrate International Women’s Day 2013 with a special presentation. “Contributions of Women to Peacebuilding Operations” will feature Judy Cheng-Hopkins, Assistant Secretary-General for Peacebuilding Support at the United Nations. This event will be at the Square House Museum at 1 Purchase St. in Rye. The program is free and will be followed by a Q&A session and discussion moderated by Marcia Brewster, president of UNA Westchester. Refreshments will be served following the program. Reservations for this program are requested as space is limited. Please call the Rye Historical Society at (914) 967-7588 to reserve a seat. The office and Square House Museum are open Tuesday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 4

p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Please visit ryehistory.org.

Local artists exhibit at Mamaroneck Artists Guild The Mamaroneck Artists Guild brings together a quartet of artists beginning March 5 through March 30 who will exhibit an eclectic range of imagery – everything from the realistic to the abstract. New Rochelle artists, Jeanie Ritter (oils), Shelia Benedis (mixed media), and Jane Petruska (mixed media and sculpture) join forces with Carol Gromer (pencil drawings) of Scarsdale in this unique exhibition of two and three-dimensional works. Come meet the artists at an opening reception on March 9, from 3 p.m. – 5 p.m. Gallery hours are Tuesday – Saturday, from 12 p.m. – 5 p.m. The gallery is located at 126 Larchmont Ave. in Larchmont. Admission is free. Anti-fracking film to screen in White Plains “Dear Governor Cuomo,” a documentary about a concert and rally sponsored by New Yorkers Against Fracking, will be shown on March 7 at 7:30 p.m. at the Ethical Culture Society of Westchester, located at 7 Saxon Wood Road (off Mamaroneck Avenue) in White Plains. A blend of music and message, the film describes the environmental, economic, and heath impact of fracking and

includes performances by Natalie Merchant, Joan Osborne, Dan Zanes, the Felice Brothers, Citizen Cope, and Medeski Martin & Wood. Suggested donation is $10. For more information, visit ethicalsocietywestchester.org.

Free foreclosure prevention workshop On March 11 from 7 p.m. – 8 p.m., Human Development Services of Westchester Neighborhood Preservation Company offers a free workshop for anyone interested in foreclosure prevention at the Port ChesterRye Brook Public Library. This not-for-profit organization may be able to help those with unaffordable mortgages, those working with their banks and having difficulty, and those in the court process. Se habla español. The library is located at One Haseco Avenue in Port Chester. For more information, call (914) 939-6710 x103. Campaign finance discussion Campaign Finance Reform in New York State will be the topic of a public discussion on March 13 from 7 p.m. – 9 p.m. at the White Plains Public Library, located at 100 Martine Ave. Sponsors are the League of Women Voters of Westchester County, LWV of White Plains, LWV of New Rochelle and the White Plains Public Library. Discussion leaders will be Laura Ladd Bierman, executive director of the League of Women Voters of New York State, and Barbara Bartoletti, legislative director of the League of Women Voters of New York State. They will begin with a slide presentation showing the effects of unlimited campaign contributions, sometimes without disclosing the donors. Then they will call for comments and questions. The LWV of New York State supports lower contribution limits, increased disclosure, and a system of small donor matching funds. For further information, call (914) 7614382. Parking is available in the library lot under the building or across the street at

the Galleria municipal lot.

Rye girls softball registration Registration is now open for Rye Girls Softball. All girls in grades 3 – 8 who live or go to school in the City of Rye are eligible to play. Visit RyeGirlsSoftball.com for information or email RyeGirlsSoftball@gmail.com with any questions. Softball clinics The Rye High School Softball Boosters are hosting a softball clinic for all girls in grades 3 – 8. The clinic will take place on March 2 from 8 a.m. – 10 a.m.; March 9 from 1 p.m. – 3 p.m.; and March 16 from 8 a.m. – 10 a.m. at Rye High School. Advanced registration is required and space is limited. Register today at RyeGirlsSoftball.com to guarantee a spot. Email RyeGirlsSoftball@gmail.com with any questions. All proceeds support the RHS softball program. Talk to explore the relationship between age and wisdom Do we really become wiser as we age? That will be the subject of a talk by the Rev. Carole Johannsen, a priest in the Episcopal Diocese of New York and a hospital chaplain, on Sunday, March 17, at the Ethical Culture Society of Westchester, 7 Saxon Wood Road (off Mamaroneck Avenue) in White Plains. Johannsen will describe what she has learned through traditional research and with the help of the 70 and 80-year-olds with whom she has worked. The program, which begins at 10:30 a.m., is free, and childcare is available. Ethical Culture is a liberal religious and educational fellowship without formal creed or dogma. For more information, contact ECSW at 914-948-1120 or visit its website, ethicalsocietywestchester.org Deadline for our Community Briefs section is every Friday at 12 p.m. Though space is not guaranteed, we will do our best to accommodate your listing. Please send all items to news@hometwn.com.

Panel supports religious day schools More than one hundred parents from Westchester recently gathered for an informational panel discussion about their options to offset the costs of religious and independent day school education and how to effectively advocate on behalf of their children at the “Community Forum on the Affordability of Catholic and Jewish Day Schools.” Participants at the event, which took place at the Schechter Westchester Upper School in Hartsdale, met with elected officials, including New York State Senators Andrea Stuart-Cousins, Ruth Hassell-Thompson, David Carlucci and George Latimer, as well as Assemblypersons Shelley Mayer, Steve Otis, David Buchwald and Amy Paulin, who was represented by Chief of Staff Nancy Fisher. The interfaith event was co-sponsored by the New York State Catholic Conference, Solomon Schechter School of Westchester, UJA Federation of New York, the Jewish Education Project, OU-Teach NYS, Westchester Day School, the Office of the Superintendent of Schools for the Archdiocese of New York, and the Westchester Jewish Council. Tuition-paying families across New York State shoulder the dual burden of paying taxes to support public schools while paying tuition to support the education of their own children. For many families with children in religious day schools, paying increasing taxes and rising tuition is becoming too difficult to sustain-creating a crisis not only for them, but for taxpayers who face a dramatic increase in cost if these families are forced to enroll their children in public school. (Submitted)

March 1, 2013 • THE RYE SOUND SHORE REVIEW • 5

WHAT’S YOUR BEEF? “What’s bothering you today?” Collected on Purchase Street in Rye “I’m bothered by the lack of business in the Smoke Shop.” Tony D’Onofrio, 57, Rye

“Capitalism is bothering me because it puts money over people.” Les Ronick, 70, Rye

“There are too many deer in my back garden.”

“I don’t like the way people treat immigrants.”

Derval Kenny, 56, Rye

Tania Bonilla, 26, Rye

-Reporting and photos by CHRIS GRAMUGLIA

End the legal fees hemorrhage This is being written on Feb. 25, two days before the City Council’s Feb. 27 meeting. But it has been emailed to all council members at 3 p.m. on the 25th, in hopes that they will consider it before the meeting. Judge John Carey My thoughts are directed to the agenda item on bills charged by three firms in connection with the golf club problem. What I urge you to do is terminate the city’s obligations to those firms as of close of business on Feb. 28. Pay the bills only after careful scrutiny by one or more lawyers with many years of in-depth law practice experience. Negotiate reductions wherever the bills seem to include more than they should. And learn the lesson not to hire outside law firms without competitive bidding and without getting agreement on a fixed fee. In other words, swear off hourly billing, just as sophisticated clients have been doing for years. Rye cannot afford to hire a law firm at an agreed hourly rate and then turn the firm loose with no limit on the number of hours for which it can charge. And Rye cannot afford to invade its contingency fund for expenses that are not emergency-related; that fund is for real emergencies, not to cover open-ended commitments that should not have been made. We will probably need the contingency fund in the course of the next ten months, for hurricanes, blizzards, or other disasters. Depleting it now, unnecessarily, is a serious error. By the end of February, the three firms must be required to have delivered to the City Council all the results of their work. If further work is needed to complete what they have done, staff and volunteers can do it. All the material should be immediately sent to the Westchester District Attorney, who has the staff and deep experience to complete a truly expert investigation. Let the City Council wind up its work. In addition to the Westchester District Attorney, the material collected so far should be sent to the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York if there is any arguable basis for federal jurisdiction. That should not be a problem, given the sweeping possibilities of charging mail fraud or wire fraud under the relevant provisions of the United States Code. Any fraudulent action by mail, phone or Internet would provide federal jurisdiction. If criminal actions have positively not been committed, then civil lawsuits may still be in order, to be launched either in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District or in the Supreme Court of the State of New York. In either court, investigation can be carried on by means of discovery, in which documents can be examined and individuals can be cross-examined at length under oath, by our own lawyers, the best that are available at the best negotiated fixed fee price. Reach John Carey at J_PCarey@verizon.com

A RYE OLDTIMER

6 • THE RYE SOUND SHORE REVIEW • March 1, 2013

Bridge completion planned for late summer By CHRISTIAN FALCONE ASSOCIATE EDITOR chris@hometwn.com

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If all goes according to plan, residents will be crossing a new Central Avenue Bridge come mid-August. At a City Council meeting last month, the construction timeline for the project was laid out before the public by the engineering firm Ammann Whitney-formerly Berger Lehman-nearly six years after the bridge was destroyed by flooding. The Central Avenue Bridge has been closed since April 2007. The city planned to reconstruct the bridge in the immediate aftermath of the storm, but delays quickly ensued as authority over the project switched from FEMA to the state Department of Transportation, which is expected to cover 80 percent of the project’s cost. The city was also sent back to the drawing board on several occasions to rework the bridge’s redesign. Mayor Douglas French, a Republican, has oftentimes referred to the bridge project, which has spanned two city administrations, as a prime example of the failings of government. The surrounding area has continued to remain downtrodden with barricades, fencing and an overall appearance of neglect. Residents of the neighborhood have complained for years that their property values have suffered because of the bridge’s demise. The wait for the bridge’s restoration seems to be almost over. The city believes the project will cost around $2 million. Last year, a $1.3 million bid was awarded to ELQ Industries for the construction work. When construction is completed, the city will authorize bonding to pay for the 20 percent share of the bridge’s costs. But to date, the city has already spent more

than $400,000 on soft costs, or non-construction design, related to the bridge without starting construction, according to city financial documents. The city has routinely blamed the bureaucracy of the federal and state government for the delay. There is no telling how much in project costs will be added on to the final bill. Included in the soft costs total that the city has already spent on the project is $114,000 billed to the city from engineering firm Berger Lehman in 2007 and 2008 for initial design work. Just one year later, in 2009, the firm came back and asked for an additional $162,000 toward further bridge designs. Ken Jackson, Ammann & Whitney’s project engineer, said construction would include three phases: the substructure, or abutment, phase, the structure phase, which is the bridge decking, and the final phase, which consists of laying the roadway. Starting sometime in early March, an excavation protection system will be installed, followed by the substructure. That work is estimated to be completed by the end of June. The superstructure portion of the work and the roadway paving will take an additional month and be done simultaneously through the middle of July. “Four months of this project will basically be looking at a hole in the ground, and we will be forming up from the bottom,” Jackson said. Following completion of the heavy-duty work, another month will be needed to put down a top layer surface plus concrete roadways, sidewalks and barriers. It is expected that the project will conclude on Aug. 18. Ken McComb, a Central Avenue resident eagerly awaiting the bridge’s restoration, BRIDGE, continued on page 13

The out-of-use bridge has been an ugly sight for area residents who live on lower Central Avenue and in surrounding neighborhoods since the bridge was closed off in 2007. Photo/Courtesy Ammann & Whitney

March 1, 2013 • THE RYE SOUND SHORE REVIEW • 7 1037, continued from page 1

be Lester’s. It could be something else.” The pending sale was part of a discussion this week with the expectation that the City Council would vote to finalize the agreement at the March 6 meeting, according to the city attorney. “Given where this contract is now,” Wilson said, “I would imagine we would close on the property within 30 days of signing the contract.” The buyer assumes responsibility for the payment of all real estate taxes, water and sewer charges and assessments, installments of assessments for local improvements and special assessments. Mayor Douglas French, a Republican, said the city’s approach was methodical in exploring everything from the potential for a police station/courthouse facility, to parking and rezoning the site. “In the end, if the deal is finalized we are getting the city out of the real estate business, putting the property back on the tax rolls, establishing a parking relationship and restoring our financial position,” the mayor said. The contract—through a licensing agreement—would also allow for the city to have its employees and officials utilize 10 parking spaces on the property’s grounds, adjacent to City Hall. Wilson said the parking agreement would be for a finite number of years. This decision comes after the City Council

initially struggled over what to do with the property. In May 2012, Lester’s offered $3.6 million to purchase the property, and some elected officials at the time seemed inclined to accept the deal assuming it was the best offer the city would receive for a property that was believed to have lost value. However, the City Council ultimately chose to hire a broker. As it turns out, if the city had accepted the Lester’s offer, it would have suffered its largest financial loss—$2.6 million—in its history. Councilwoman Catherine Parker, a Democrat who was opposed to taking the Lester’s offer from the outset, said given the location of the building, she always felt it would generate offers in the $5 million range. But the councilwoman, and Purchase Street business owner, also wonders what could have been. She said she had previously suggested forming a Local Development Corporation, which never gained any traction, in an effort to rent out the property long-term at true market value that would have afforded the city a continual revenue stream to offset property taxes. The sale of 1037 brings to close the saga of the city’s most controversial property, once the home of CVS. Purchased in 2006 under the administration of former Mayor Steve Otis, a Democrat, for $6.2 million, the property was purchased with an eye toward relocating the police station/courthouse from McCullough

Place to the Boston Post Road location. But once the economy began to sour, so did support for the purchase. The issue became a political hot potato in the 2009 mayoral election. French, as a mayoral candidate, campaigned on selling the property and putting it back on the city’s tax rolls. Once taking office in 2010, the new City

Council administration under Mayor French made the decision not to construct a police station/courthouse facility on the property due to costs estimated to be in excess of $25 million. An attempt to reach Adam Wolf, vice president of Bill Wolf Petroleum, for comment was unsuccessful.

The city has been offered $5.6 million for its 1037 Boston Post Road property. The deal, which is expected to be finalized in the next few weeks, would transfer ownership to a gasoline distribution company. File photo

8 • THE RYE SOUND SHORE REVIEW • March 1, 2013

March 1, 2013 • THE RYE SOUND SHORE REVIEW • 9

Valentine’s Day vigil brings message to Manhattanville By DANIEL OFFNER STAFF REPORTER dan@hometwn.com

On Valentine’s Day, a small collective with the Connie Hogarth Center for Social Action at Manhattanville College gathered outside Reid Hall for a candlelight vigil against domestic violence. The group of seven outspoken individuals, students and local activists wandered the campus with signs and literature on the global movement. One attendee, Liz Wind or White Plains, said even the small demonstration made a difference, “It all has an impact,” Wind said. “Never underestimate the power of a small group.” Men, women and children in over 203 different countries collectively made a stand as part of One Billion Rising–a global campaign advocating for an end to violence against women. Created by Westchester playwright Eve Ensler, who famously composed “The Vagina Monologues,” the movement calls for 1 billion people worldwide to “strike, dance and rise.” At the Manhattanville demonstration, the group took the vigil inside the cafeteria at Benziger Hall, and used battery-operated LED candles to get their message across to students. Connie Hogarth, a Beacon resident after

whom the college’s Center for Social Action is named, said that the vigil had been driven by the concept of Valentine’s Day and a concern for women worldwide. “Violence is such a major dimension...there is no place it escapes,” said Hogarth. “It’s a violent culture, and most of it is directed towards women.” For Hogarth, 86, the concern for women is one of significant importance as protests continue in India following the gang rape of a 23year-old medical student in New Delhi, causing an uproar among human activists worldwide. Over the past 15 years, the Center for Social Action at has orchestrated several student demonstrations and has encouraged students to be informed and speak up on both national and international social issues. “Women need to have their status upgraded as an equal to us,” said Dale Saltzman of Yorktown Heights. “Unfortunately, this is seen as a non-issue.” Inspired by the global movement, two students with the Center for Social Action directed and produced their own documentary films focusing on domestic violence and the effects they have on the people around them. Jeanine Strouther, a sophomore student at Manhattanville College, said that some of the inspiration behind her film came from her cousin, who had been a victim of domestic violence.

“I chose to focus on domestic violence since it effects a lot of people worldwide and it stuck with me,” Strouther said. “I thought this would be a good way to get the message out.” Keana Outlar, a freshman and student coordinator at the Hogarth Center for Social Action, said that the focus of her documentary, entitled “A Call to Help,” was a shelter for victims of

domestic violence in Rockland County. Recent studies conducted by the U.S. Department of Justice show that one in five young women will be a victim of sexual assault while they are in college, one in nine teenage girls will be forced to have sex in their lifetime, and one in 10 teens will be hurt on purpose by someone they are dating.

Connie Hogarth (center), joined by fellow activists, makes the trip across the quad at Manhattanville College with candles, signs and literature on a global advocacy campaign seeking to end violence against women. Photo/Daniel Offner

10 • THE RYE SOUND SHORE REVIEW • March 1, 2013

In the Heights” arrives in Westchester

By MICHELLE JACOBY CONTRIBUTOR

“In The Heights” received four Tony awards in 2008, including the Best Orchestrations, Best Choreography and Best Musical awards, along with one for the creator himself, Tony Award winning composer-lyricist Lin-Manuel Miranda. This month, the show comes to Westchester Broadway Theatre. “We are celebrating talent and community tonight” said John Fanelli, director of Standing Ovation Studios in Armonk, NY, at the opening of the show. “The combination of talent and energy from the Broadway and national productions with local rising

The cast of “In The Heights.”

Perry Young as Usnavi (center) and dance ensemble. Photos/John Vecchiolla

FaTye as (Benny) and Arielle Jacobs (Nina)

stars is a rare and wonderful happening for Westchester.” Narrator/rapper Unsavi, played by Perry Young, takes us through the life and times of a tight-knit community in Washington Heights. Young’s relaxed attitude on stage pulls everyone together. His confidence wavers when he encounters his love interest, Vanessa, played by Gizel Jimenez. Vanessa is a street-wise girl with stars in her eyes. Her songs, “It Won’t Be Long Now” and “Champagne,” express her softer side without softening her edge.

Carla (Nina V. Negron) and Daniela (Ariana Valdes) are Vanessa’s friends/coworkers. The girls get to show their fun side in “No Me Diga.” Valdes has great stage presence with a voice to match. She knows how to have fun on stage and gets to show us with “Carnaval del Barrio.” Local talents include FaTye as Benny and Joey Sanzaro as Piragua. FaTye is passionate in his performance as he handles serious issues in the show. Sanzaro lets his good nature and amazing voice shine through as he gets some laughs with his role as Piragua Guy. Benjamin Perez and Nicole Paloma Sarro play Kevin and Camila Rosario, Nina’s parents. Arielle Jacobs plays Nina, who has a tough time finding her way. She is torn between her love for her family and her fear of what the future will bring. In Act I she walks on eggshells as she sings “Breathe” and “When You’re Home.” She starts to come into her own and stands up to her father in Act II. Jacobs shares a beautiful moment with FaTye in “When The Sun Goes Down.” Christina Aranda as Abuela Claudia brings the house down. The matriarch of the community keeps it all together as she shuffles across the stage with her breadcrumbs in hand. Old in years and just as wise, Abuela keeps everyone connected. Aranda has all the movements and mannerisms of an elderly person. She sings “Paciencia y Fe” and “Hundreds of Stories” beautifully. Voltaire Wade-Greene as Graffiti Pete was fun to watch on stage. His dance moves along with the ensemble express the high energy level of choreography that is based on the original Broadway choreography by Andy Blankenbuehler and reproduced by Morgan Marcell. Costume design by Maria Castaldo; set design by Steve Loftus; lighting design by Andrew Gmoser and musical direction by Shelton Becton. This Standing Ovation Studios production is directed and produced by John Fanelli. “In The Heights” will be playing at the Westchester Broadway Theatre now through March 17. For additional information please call (914) 592-2222 or visit broadwaytheatre.com. For more information about “In The Heights,” visit intheheightswestchester.com.

March 1, 2013 • THE RYE SOUND SHORE REVIEW • 11

Business Briefs Dr. Ameet Goyal offers latest eye care procedures From correcting poor vision to improving age related eye diseases, recent advances in vision technology are helping people overcome frustrating, and sometimes debilitating, vision problems. Locally, Dr. Ameet Goyal and the physicians at Rye Eye Associates are using cutting-edge treatments such as “bladeless” laser surgery to remove cataracts and minimally invasive tear duct surgery using an endoscope, which is a thin flexible tube with a tiny camera on the end. “Our practice specializes in these advanced eye care treatments so that we can offer our patients the safest and best procedures along with the quickest recovery times and the least amount of pain and scarring,” says Dr. Goyal. An oculoplastic surgeon for nearly two decades, Dr. Goyal is one of the most finely trained and skilled ophthalmologists in the tri-state area, and is highly regarded for his specialty work as an ophthalmic plastic surgeon. Dr. Goyal attended medical school at the University of Cincinnati School of Medicine, where he discovered a passion for ophthalmology during his clinical rotations. He then did his internship in internal medicine at West Virginia University. Rye Eye Associates is located at 167 Purchase St. For further information, please call (914) 921-6966 or visit newyorkeyedocs.com. Kenise Barnes Fine Art announces move and expansion After 13 years in my sweet little gallery space-and two years further up the street on Palmer-I have decided to expand and move. My lease is up at the end of March and I have been actively looking for space, both in Larchmont and neighboring towns, for six months. Although there are some good spaces available throughout Westchester County, it made me wistful to think about leaving Larchmont, and the wonderful art lovers, collectors, neighbors and friends that I have met over the years. I was just on the brink of signing a lease elsewhere when a wonderful opportunity came my way. It must be that 13 is my lucky number! I am so pleased to announce that I will staying in my building on Palmer Avenue in Larchmont and just moving up the street three storefronts. Lee Rubin, of stylish Wendy Gee fame, has decided to rework his store and will be con-

densing into his one large storefront, making the right-hand store available. I jumped on the opportunity and will begin an extensive build out at the end of the month. I will be able to expand from my current 650 square feet to a spacious 1,300 square feet of exhibition space and 1,300 additional square feet of warehouse/inventory space below. I will build two exhibition galleries, an office and a private viewing room in the space. I look forward to inviting you to our opening bash scheduled for April 13. Our inagural exhibition will be “Abstract Thinking,” featuring the work of David Collins, who has been with the gallery since its inception in 1994, Yolanda Sanchez, Katia Santibanez and Josette Urso. We will open our “Photo 13” show March 2 from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. with large-scale photographs by Bastienne Schmidt, Roger Ricco and Jill Greenberg. As always, the public is invited. We may be reached by email Kenise@KBFA.com, Leanne@KBFA.com or info@KBFA.com-or by phone at 914 834 8077. The website has information, images, directions and a whole lot more information on who we are, what we do and what services we provide.

Montefiore physician appointed to Board of Laboratories and Research Rubina Heptulla, M.D., chief of the division of pediatric endocrinology and diabetes at The Children’s Hospital at Montefiore, has been appointed to the Westchester County Laboratories and Research Board of Managers. Dr. Heptulla will serve a threeyear term starting this month and will oversee quality assurance, reporting and budgeting for Westchester laboratories. Westchester County Executive Robert P. Astorino selected Dr. Heptulla, a Rye resident and professor of pediatrics and medicine at Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University, to join four existing board managers who provide oversight of environmental laboratories, forensic and toxicology services, and microbiological laboratories. The board works in conjunction with Medical Examiner Kunjlata Ashar, M.D., who heads the Department of Laboratories and Research, to provide reliable, accurate and rapid diagnosis of diseases to the Westchester County health community. The board of managers, which consists of three New York State licensed physicians, holds quarterly meetings to discuss operations of the laboratories, fees and approval of building improvements and repairs to ensure that the county’s laboratories operate effectively and efficiently. Dr. Heptulla’s appointment is subject to approval by the Board of Legislators. Dr. Heptulla joined Montefiore in April 2010. An internationally recognized pediatric endocrinologist, she is an expert in diabetes, thyroid, growth, puberty and adrenal disorders, and leads research in these areas.

She oversees six pediatric endocrinology and diabetes clinics that receive nearly 200 patient visits each week in locations across Westchester and the Bronx. A seventh clinic will open in early 2013. Dr. Heptulla has received numerous grants and awards for her work and has published extensively in peer-reviewed journals.

White Plains Hospital achieves accreditation The Cancer Program at White Plains Hospital has earned another three-year Accreditation with Commendation from The Commission on Cancer of the American College of Surgeons. The Commission on Cancer, a consortium of professional organizations dedicated to improving survival and quality of life for cancer patients through standardsetting, prevention, research, education and the monitoring of comprehensive quality care, is the only multidisciplinary accreditation program for cancer programs in the United States. Its membership includes fellows of the American College of Surgeons and representatives of 47 national organiza-

tions that reflect the full spectrum of cancer care. The Commission on Cancer promotes quality care through comprehensive standards that guide treatment and ensure patient-centered cancer care; unique reporting tools to benchmark performance and improve outcomes; and educational interventions and targeted training opportunities. The hospital’s cancer program is dedicated to providing exceptional cancer care that is comprehensive, coordinated and compassionate to individuals who work or live in Westchester County and the surrounding areas. The program is designed to meet the needs of cancer patients and their families through prevention and screening programs, offering advanced diagnosis and access to the latest treatment options and clinical trials as well as a full range of support services. For more information on the cancer program services at White Plains Hospital, log onto www.wphospital.org or call (914) 681-2701. The next Business Briefs section will run on April 5. Please send any submission for our April issue to biz@hometwn.com by Friday, March 29. Each submission can include one picture and must be between 175-225 words. If you have any questions, email Deputy Editor Jason Chirevas at news@hometwn.com.

12 • THE RYE SOUND SHORE REVIEW • March 1, 2013

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affordable. Meanwhile, Democrats are in the process of selecting their own choice to oppose Astorino in November. Board of Legislators Chairman Ken Jenkins, of Yonkers, County Legislator Bill Ryan, of White Plains, and New Rochelle Mayor Noam Bramson are all pursuing the party’s nomination. BRIDGE, continued from page 6

said, in the last several weeks his family had been shut out of their house four or five times by a loss of power as Con Edison worked on utilities around the bridge. “They’ve knocked on our door and said, ’In 5 minutes we’re shutting down your entire house,’” McComb said. “We were blocked in for two hours. We weren’t able to get our kids to their events.” McComb remains concerned about the logistics of the construction schedule since his house sits in close proximity to the bridge. In the next month, the city also plans to take another look into removing the Lowenstein Bridge, a small defunct access bridge that is believed to worsen flooding in the area by catching debris and impeding water flow. Initial engineering estimates dating back to 2007 called for $20,000 to remove the bridge’s decking. City Manager Scott Pickup said the benefit of removing that bridge would be clearing obstructions during flood events. “We’ve had various debris catching in some of our Blind Brook [storm] events,” the city manager said.

Colonial camp Travel back in time this summer at the Rye Historical Society’s annual Hands on History Summer Colonial Camp. Girls and boys ages 7 to 12 will spend three fun-filled weeks immersed in colonial history at the Square House Museum. This year, summer camp has been extended to three weeks, from July 9 to 26 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., Tuesday through Friday. Campers will experience what life was like more than two centuries ago through fun hands-on activities including painting portraits and landscapes, learning about colonial gardens and food, and old-fashioned games. The cost per child for the full three weeks is $400 for members and $450 for non-members by April 30, after April 30, the cost is $450 for members and $525 for non-members. Weekly sessions and rates are available. Campers should bring their own lunch and drink; snacks will be provided. To register your child for this memorable camp experience, call the Rye Historical Society at (914) 967-7588. The Rye Historical Society is located at 1 Purchase Street, Rye, NY. The Square House Museum is open Tuesday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. For more information, please call (914) 967-7588 or visit our website, www.ryehistory.org. (Submitted)

14 • THE RYE SOUND SHORE REVIEW • March 1, 2013

New Rochelle firefighter appointed to human rights commission By ALEXANDRA BOGDANOVIC STAFF REPORTER alexandra@hometwn.com

As one of New Rochelle’s bravest, Mark McLean fights fires. Now he’ll be fighting to end discrimination, too. On Feb. 15, County Executive Robert Astorino, a Republican, announced that McLean had been named to the Westchester County Human Rights Commission. “The Human Rights Commission plays a vital role in helping to eliminate discrimination and educate the public about human rights issues,” said Astorino. “Westchester is a diverse community that tolerates no less than dignity and respect for all. I thank the commission for its unwavering dedication, and I know Mark will be a valuable addition to the team.” McLean is a lieutenant with the New Rochelle Fire Department and an active member of the New Rochelle Chapter of the NAACP. As one of 15 members of the county’s Human Rights Commission, he will be tasked with reviewing cases involving allegations of discrimination. He will also attend the commission’s monthly meetings. “Serving on the Human Rights Commission will give me the opportunity to bring my real world perspective as a New Rochelle firefighter, member of the NAACP, community advocate

REPORT, continued from page 1

pursue all avenues for restitution, and work to restructure its enterprise fund models to restore credibility. The city may also look to collect on its employee theft insurance policy. The investigation has cost the city approximately $280,000. There were 29 witnesses interviewed in connection with the investigation. Yandrasevich, through an attorney, declined to be interviewed for the investigation. The controversy at the club first surfaced last summer when it was uncovered that roughly $2.2 million in salary costs had been paid out to RM Staffing and Events, Inc., a company that had provided labor for the golf club. Of that total cost, approximately $400,000 was billed as employee overtime. The relationship between Yandrasevich and the staffing company raised further questions when it was reported that his wife, Anne, worked for the company and Yandrasevich himself did consulting work for RM Staffing. Rye Golf Club, under Yandrasevich’s direction, agreed to a deal with RM in 2007, prior to the company even being incorporated. The former club manager was also scrutinized for his role in negotiations that would allow RM Staffing to take over operations at Oak Hills Golf Course in Norwalk, Conn. Yandrasevich argued at the time that he had only done consulting work for the RM Staffing and only received about $1,000 in compensation. However, investigators discovered that his

and volunteer to the important work of the City Councilman Jared Rice, a Democrat, said Human Rights Commission,” McLean said. he has gotten to know McLean a bit over the past New Rochelle Fire Chief Lou DiMeglio char- couple of years and has already congratulated acterized McLean as a “good officer,” and said him on his appointment to the commission. The city will benefit from having a “direct McLean followed in his father’s footsteps by joining the New Rochelle Fire Department on link” to the commission should any issues arise, Rice said. March 3, 1986. He was According to inforpromoted on Sept. 18, mation posted on the 2008 and is currently assigned to Station 4 on commission’s website, McLean joins Drake Avenue. His brother, Steven, Thomas Koshy as New is also a New Rochelle Rochelle’s representative in the group. The firefighter. other members are McLean said he Jerold Ruderman of views “acts of unlawful discrimination” in White Plains, Donna much the same way as Marie Baloy of Baldwin he views the dangers he Place, Millie H. Becker faces as a professional of Pound Ridge, firefighter. If they are Kimberly Morella of ignored or otherwise Mount Kisco, Charles go unchallenged, illegal Palombini of Cortlandt acts of discrimination County Executive Robert Astorino, right, Manor, George Rios can spread, causing ir- recently appointed New Rochelle firefighter of Yonkers, William reparable damage to the Mark McLean, left, to the Westchester County Schmidt of Peekskill Human Rights Commission. and Harry Singh of community, he said. Contributed photo “I look forward to Yonkers. playing a role in our efforts to combat unIn addition to its 15-member board, an exlawful discrimination here in Westchester,” ecutive director, deputy director, director of fair McLean added. housing, a housing investigator and a confiden-

tial assistant to the executive director, staff the commission. The commission “strives to investigate, uncover and prosecute violations of the county Human Rights Law and related laws.” It also provides “education and advocacy that foster racial and ethnic harmony among diverse individuals and groups” and “promotes and supports the furtherance of human rights in employment, housing, public accommodation, schools, credit and any other area.” According to its annual report for 20102011, most of the complaints the commission received pertained to race-based discrimination. For the two-year timeframe documented in the report, the commission received 593 claims of alleged discrimination. Employment discrimination’ accounted for 77.5 percent of the general claims. “At the close of 2010, approximately $66,000 was awarded and paid to complainants and an unquantifiable–but significant–amount [of] equitable relief obtained,” the report said. “At the close of 2011, approximately $210,000 was awarded and paid to complainants and an unquantifiable–but significant amount of equitable relief obtained.” “Equitable relief” includes reinstatement to jobs or “obtaining benefits which may have been unfairly withheld or removed,” according to the report.

involvement with the company was much deeper. Yandrasevich was involved in most, if not all, material aspects of the relationship between RM Staffing and its employees, according to testimony given by Suzanne RuggieroMadeo, the owner of Studio Y and RM Staffing. The report states that Yandrasevich told Ruggiero-Madeo which employees to hire, what to pay them, what to charge the golf club for them and when to raise RM’s rates. It was determined that Yandrasevich controlled RM Staffing, and that, over a six-year period, he used RM and Studio Y “to steal many hundreds of thousands of dollars from the city,” according to the report. In one email cited by investigators, Ruggiero-Madeo refers to Yandrasevich as her “boss.” The investigators also discovered that RM Staffing did not perform any of the functions of a traditional staffing company; it did not recruit employees nor screen candidates. It did not conduct background checks, nor did it supervise or train employees. It was actually the golf club, under Yandrasevich’s authority, that performed those functions. The golf club even drafted ads and paid the charges for running the ads. These revelations suggested to investigators that RM was simply a shell company created by the Yandraseviches and others. From April 2007 to September 2012, RM Staffing invoiced roughly $7 million and received payments from the city totaling that amount. Investigators found that Mrs. Yandrasevich,

Restaurant Associates to operate the club’s restaurant, snack bar and catering operation, the club assumed operations internally in a move overseen solely by Mr. Yandrasevich. The day after RM was incorporated in 2007, the company began billing the golf club for staffing services. The early invoices lacked basic details about what staffing services had been provided, according to investigators. “There were no names or dates or hours tied to specific workers,” the report states. In 2010, Mr. Yandrasevich formed Ansco Inc., which submitted unspecified monthly invoices to Studio Y. Ruggerio-Madeo was unable to describe the nature of the work provided except for two invoices from May 2010, which totaled nearly $17,000. In two years, Ansco made more than $211,000 off invoices to RM and Studio Y. The report released this week did not uncover evidence that any other former or current city employees benefited financially, though those in charge of the city’s operations are already facing questions for allowing the mismanagement to occur for an extended period of time. At the center of the scrutiny is City Manager Scott Pickup, who suggested during a September 2012 Rye Golf Club Commission meeting that the relationship between RM Staffing and Mr. Yandrasevich had been vetted by the city attorney and found to be above board. Pickup told investigators that his comments were made in an effort “to calm everyone down.” Pickup told investigators he knew the city attorney had not reviewed the staffing contract when he made that remark.

working for RM, received a salary totaling nearly $175,000 from November 2009 to September 2012. She also received other payments from RM Staffing, including several checks and wire transfers in excess of $70,000. During the years of ongoing allegedly fraudulent activity, Mr. Yandrasevich bought two boats as well as a house for his mother in North Carolina. In April 2010, he used an RM Staffing check to pay off a personal debt. Red flags were first raised during a 2010 audit of the golf club, although there was no illegal activity suspected at the time. The report states that early that year, former City Manager Frank Culross expressed a concern to the city’s outside auditors regarding a potential ownership relationship between Ms. Yandrasevich and RM Staffing. However, it does not appear that the auditors or anyone else were able to substantiate the concern at the time. This week, moving trucks were seen outside the home of the Yandraseviches. The former manager resigned from his post with the club on Jan. 18 and agreed to vacate his home by Feb. 28. He and his family lived rent-free in a house on club grounds as part of his employment agreement. Mr. Yandrasevich was hired by the city in March 2002. With his hiring, he was given reign over the operation and management of the golf club. In retrospect, it seems there was little oversight from the club’s Golf Commission or city management of Yandrasevich’s handling of the organization. In May 2006, when a contract expired with

March 1, 2013 • THE RYE SOUND SHORE REVIEW • 15

A “Doctor Who” geek’s manifesto My obsession with the TV show “Doctor Who” can be summed up with an anecdote about my fear of flying. In January 2005, I took a flight from New York to Orlando LUNGARIELLO and was convinced leading up to the trip that the plane was AT LARGE going crash. During the two-hour flight, I squeezed the Mark Lungariello armrests, took deep breaths and tried to convince myself I’d end up safely on the ground. I’m not religious, but on an airplane I’ll try whatever works. My request to God: “Please don’t let me die before the new ‘Doctor Who’ series starts.” “Doctor Who” debuted in the United Kingdom 50 years ago, on Nov. 23, 1963, the day after John F. Kennedy was killed. The show focused on an eccentric alien, known only as The Doctor, who travels through time and space in an old-fashioned British telephone box that is bigger on the inside than on the outside. Wherever he ends up, he’s doing good, outwitting nasty extraterrestrial monsters and protecting the Earth from the occasional invasion. He uses his mind and has a brains-over-brawn approach to problem solving. There is no magic in the plots, only scientific fact. Like many great love stories, it was love at first meeting for “Doctor Who” and me. My older cousin told me about it when I was 7 years old. He explained the premise over a plate of our grandmother’s oversized ravioli and by the time the plate was done, I was a fan, without ever having seen the show. Soon, I was taping episodes of the program, which was broadcast on Saturdays at 5:30 p.m. on WLIW public television. At around 5 p.m., I’d be so antsy waiting for the show to start that I’d usually watch the Canadian teen soap “Degrassi Junior High” while I waited for the main event. Sometimes I’d videotape an episode as I watched it, planning to re-watch the same episode in the future. I’d pause when WLIW interrupted the middle of the program for their pledge drives. When my family would be out at 5:30 p.m. on Saturday, I’d have to set the VCR to record before we left the house. On VCRs in those days, you could set the recording speed, with “EP” giving you the most amount of time. It also gave you the worst picture and sound quality, but I had to use that setting to make sure there was enough time to tape the entire program. That didn’t always work. “Doctor Who” had a fluidity to its format. Each episode introduced new guests, and usually new alien monsters for the Doctor to fight. The producers built in a convenient, but brilliant, plot device that immediately ensured the series’ longevity: they allowed the lead character to “regenerate” and periodically change his entire physical appearance and even personality traits.

This meant that different actors could play the role and put their own twist on it, and it also meant that the cast could be a revolving door. Over the years, 11 different actors have played the lead and each played it quite differently. Tom Baker, the fourth Doctor, with his curly hair and seven-foot long scarf, was perhaps the most iconic. There’s a photo of him on my office wall and a toy figure of him on my desk. At home, there’s a framed Time Out London with Baker on its cover. My girlfriend, Julie, gave me a set of “Doctor Who” trading cards a few years back. Recently, we sat at the dinner table with houseguests and Julie produced the cards. To show the depth of my geekiness, she flashed the front of the cards to me, each one depicting a scene from the series, and asked what was the name of the episode, who was the lead actor in the series at the time and what year the episode ran. For bonus points, I would try to name the scriptwriter and director for the episode. The guests seemed terrified at this ability, as if they had just realized I had a problem that I’d hidden from them for years. But Julie found it amusing. The poor girl is quite tolerant of “my condition.” The show became an English institution in the 1960s and, in the 1970s, it became a global phenomenon. It was known for its low-budget polyurethane sets, spaced-out sound effects and latex-masked monsters. It aired for 26 seasons until 1989, when it was shelved by the BBC. The cult continued through novels and radio plays before it was resurrected on television again in 2005. The new, more polished series has been a breakout success, running for seven seasons so far and inspiring two spinoff series as well as a number of television specials on Christmas and other holidays. Thirty plus seasons of television is a lot of material for a science fiction nerd to ingest. Julie, ever sympathetic to my condition, allowed me several concessions when she recently moved in and took over my apartment. She granted me two shelves in the bedroom to stack all of my “Doctor Who” DVDs and old VHS tapes, although she made me dispose of the duplicates: those VHS episodes I now have on DVD. Really, the show is the only reason I even have a VCR anymore after years of collecting. I’m a completist, someone who buys and watches episodes that I find terrible or difficult to watch. But, as anything this geeky goes, you are invested in the bad as well as the good. With the popularity of the new series, merchandise is suddenly for sale at places like Hot Topic or FYE. People who know me best find that this suddenly easy access to merch makes it impossible not to gift me a “Doctor Who”-themed cellphone case, notebook or T-shirt. They have all become enablers and I don’t mind that one bit. The first step, as they say, is admitting you have a problem. And so what if do? Reach Mark Lungariello at mark@hometwn.com

SPORTS Eastchester’s final four appearance Anyone who watched Eastchester play this year probably isn’t surprised that the team is headed to the County Center. One of the most unselfish, tenacious teams in the section, the Eagles have lost just one game all season. Anyone who has followed Eastchester over the past few decades, however, might believe this is a fantasy. This year will mark Eastchester’s first trip to the final four since 1971, which was more than 20 years before any players on this current team were even born.

Biggest surprises/thrills of the postseason New Ro’s runs to the County Center It’s not really a shock to see New Rochelle’s boys or girls teams making an appearance at the County Center. For many years, the Huguenots have fielded top-notch programs for both genders. This year, however, both teams have faced their share of adversity-the boys losing to Scarsdale and the girls struggling down the stretch-but they both seem to have bounced back at the right time to ride the sixth-seed all the way to the playoffs. Look for Joe Clarke and Amirror Dixon to step up in a big way if these Huguenots teams punch their ticket to the finals. Mamaroneck’s last-second defeat The Tigers were just 58 seconds away from a section crown on Feb. 24 when a goal by fierce rival Suffern knotted the score at 2, sending the game into overtime. The goal spurred on Suffern to strike first in overtime, giving the Mounties their third-straight Section I title. John Jay wins Division II title Over the past 10 years, only two teams have won the Section I title in Division II; Pelham and Rye. That all changed, however, on Feb. 24, when John Jay used a big third period to down the Garnets in the finals to claim its first-ever title. John Jay’s 5-1 win over the Garnets was the team’s second win in three days against the normal division stalwarts and could vault them into the conversation of Section I powers in the future.

John Jay’s hockey team celebrates its first Section I title after a 5-1 victory over Rye. John Jay is the first team in the last decade besides Pelham or Rye to win Division II. Photo/Bobby Begun

16 • THE RYE SOUND SHORE REVIEW • March 1, 2013

SPORTS

Rye falls to John Jay in Section I finals By MIKE SMITH ASSOCIATE SPORTS EDITOR sports@Hometwn.com

For the past 10 years, Section I has crowned just two champions at the Division II level. That two-team stranglehold on the division was broken on Feb. 24 when John Jay defeated Rye at the Brewster Ice Rink to claim its first ever section crown with a 5-1 win. It took a convincing third period to wrest control of the section from southern Westchester as the Indians poured on three goals to extend their 2-1 lead in the final seven minutes of the game. Rye coach Jason Friesen commended the Indians on their final stanza, and said that his team was simply unable to mount an offensive that would have kept them in the game. “We just weren’t able to get anything going, we had just four or five shots on goal in that period,” he said. “They did a great job clearing their end and we didn’t do enough to stay with them.” Although the Indians are first-time Division II champions, Friesen said that John Jay had long been one of the better teams in the division. In 2007, the two teams met in the section title game with Rye coming out on top. This year, in order to claim the throne, the Indians had to oust Pelham and Rye in successive games. “They’ve always had a pretty good hockey team, as long as I’ve been here,” said Friesen.

Connor McGovern rips a slapshot in the first period of Rye’s Feb. 24 game against John Jay. McGovern will be part of a junior class that is expected to lead Rye next season. Photos/Bobby Begun Aiden Talgo makes a save on Feb. 24 against John Jay. Talgo and the Garnets kept the game close until an explosive late-game flurry by the Indians put the game out of reach.

Rye’s Cal Hynson is laid out by an open-ice hit from John Jay’s Anthony Scapperotti on Feb. 24. The Indians were able to control the action in the third period and went on to capture their first-ever section title.

“Even when we beat them earlier in the year, we knew that this was a strong team.” Despite the bitter taste of a seasonending loss, however, there were still plenty of positives on the ice for the Garnets this year. With a number of setbacks, including the loss of their home rink and an injury to the team’s top scorer in Michael Benincasa, the Garnets amassed a 17-5-1 record with some wins over marquee clubs including Mamaroneck, rival Pelham, and topranked McQuade-Jesuit from Section IX. “Throw this game out and we had a great year,” said Friesen. “These kids really overcame a lot of obstacles and were in every hockey game that we played, so what they were able to do was tremendous.” Rye will graduate eight seniors, including goalie Aiden Talgo, Benincasa, and defensemen Jason Chin, but have a solid group of juniors, led by Griffen Tuten, Jack O’Brien, Garrett DiEdwards, Cal Hynson, and Connor McGovern to lead the way. “That junior class is going to be big for us,” said Friesen. “That’s six really strong skaters and they’re going to be important next year.”


Rye Sound Shore Review 3-1-13