Edito Letter From The Editor
It’s been a great summer so far, and this issue packs plenty of action. On the cover we feature the Long Island Lizards, who will be making a run at the playoffs with plenty of talent in their arsenal this year. In this issue, we also feature many awesome students that are doing amazing things. Starting off, we highlight Ebby Johnson, a deaf student athlete at the Millneck School who despite the challenges in his life continues to flourish not only in the class room, but on the court as well. Next, we feature Chris Linnen who takes his education to the skies at the BOCES School of Aviation. Finally, we highlight Angelo Viteritti of John Glenn who will be moving to Italy to play professional soccer later this year. We have a surprise for you in this issue as well, as Angelo is not the only professional athlete featured in this issue. Don’t miss our article on former UFC Welterweight Champion Matt Serra, a true hometown hero that continues to make an impact in the community. Living on Long Island we have access to many sports and rest assured, we did not miss the action taking place on the shores. Read all about the East End Volleyball League, where both adults and kids partake in both competitive and recreational games all summer long. We head out to the water, to check out hometown windsurfer Jimi Sobeck and his Olympic aspirations. Finally, for those of you who like the more leisurely sports don’t miss Smithtown’s own Jim Liu. This young junior amateur golf champion has been very successful on the course, and is already going after some of Tiger Woods’ amateur records. We hope that you not only enjoy reading this issue, but we hope to inspire you to try some of the exciting summer activities that we cover. So peel yourselves off the couch, drop that remote control, and get out there and have some fun while the weather is beautiful. On a final note, don’t forget to check out our weekly UA Insider videos, which give you the in-depth coverage you’re looking for and features the best athletes, sports and activities Strong Island has to offer. From our staff to your home, we hope you have a fun and safe summer, and we’ll see you on the field in September!
Ultimate Athlete Magazine
Paul Corace N.J. Comanzo
SCOTT “SCOTTO” SAVITT Luis Cova SENIOR ART DIRECTOR Joe Weinreb Managing Editor James Crepea Director of development Senior sports editor
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Jessica Peters Taylor Walker Courtney Pustay Erik Schlenker Dave Stewart Keri Sams Julianne Bosko Carissa Ierulli Richard Brooks
Dr. Tom Ferraro Ken Ryan Kaela Mahon robert falkenburgh matthew derosa Jaclynkelli Kronemberg Jose Luis Covarrubias Andrew Coen Jay Mumford
HARVEY SANDIG DOMENIC WHITE ROBIN PERCYZ alessandra malito Jessica Peters douglas carter Luis Vazquez Michael Mejia
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ANGELA DATRE Jose Luis Covarrubias Adil Borluca Bruce R. Feeley Richard Ruotolo Josh Simon
Ultimate Athlete Magazine (ISSN 1931-5295) is published 12 times a year by Ultimate Athlete, Inc., 40 Woodbine Avenue, Northport, New York 11768. All contents copyright 2009 by Ultimate Athlete, Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction or use in whole or part of the content without the prior written consent of Ultimate Athlete, Inc. is strictly prohibited. All logos and trademarks are the properties of their respective owners. Although the writers and the publisher have exhaustively researched all sources to ensure the accuracy and the completeness of the information contained in this publication, we assume no responsibility for errors, inaccuracies, omissions, or any inconsistency herein. The opinions expressed in all materials are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent those of Ultimate Athlete, Inc or Long Island’s Ultimate Athlete Magazine.
SUMMER II 2010
18 Long Island Lizards Leap into the Playoffs
24 Sports Psychology Find the Zone
26 Matt Serra
32 John Glenn
Determination at its Best
36 Eastern Suffolk Boces Aviation Christopher Linnen
40 East End Volleyball Fun in the Sun
44 Mill Neck Manor
School for the Deaf , Ebby Johnson
Sophmore Wins v.s. Junior
52 LI Express
Rivals Become Teammates
58 Pro Corner
Team USA World Cup
64 Jimi Sobeck
Cant Get Enough Thrills, Spills, & Drills
The Place to Race
72 Sports Injury
A Pound of Prevention
78 Relentless Lacrosse Lives on
Photo by Luis Cova
The action gets intense at Lax Fest 2010, as a member of the Long Island Hurricanes club lacrosse team intimidates a fallen member of the Morris Select Lacrosse Club of New Jersey.
Photo by Luis Cova
Splash! A kiteboarder goes horizontal in his attempt to grab some sick air over the waters of the Great South Bay.
A member of the Best Kiteboarding team shreds the cool blue waters of the Great South Bay, hoping to have a great day on the waves.
Photo by Luis Cova
Photo by Luis Cova
Having a great day on the water, a kiteboarder hopes to land a frontside 180.
By Daniel Holzhauer Photos by Dana Kaplan
When Warrior Lacrosse President Dave Morrow and fitness celebrity Jake Steinfeld founded Major League Lacrosse ten years ago, Long Island was an obvious choice to house one of the original franchises. The Long Island Lizards were winners immediately, winning the MLL championship in the league’s inaugural season and again in 2003. After four straight victories secured them a spot in the 2010 playoffs, the Lizards are poised to make a run at the Steinfeld Cup once again. “We’re on a little winning streak so hopefully we can take it into the postseason and bring one home,” says attackman Tim Goettelmann of Manhasset. The 6-foot-4 Goettelmann, a member of that original Lizards team, was key to the Lizard’s 16-11 playoff-clinching victory over the defending champion Toronto Nationals. He scored a natural hat trick in the fourth quarter, culminating with a leaping goal to put the game out of reach. “They were playing so far up and I got underneath all three of them,” Goettelmann said. “It was just really nice.” The third goal was the 248th of his career and set a new league record for goals. Goettelmann, known as “The Monster” to both teammates and opponents, also holds the record for games played (121) and game-clinching goals (13), all of which came while wearing the black and green of Long Island. “It really was a shining moment, a storybook ending. To do it in the fourth quarter when we were only up three. I think we were getting stagnant on offense, and we needed a jolt,” says Goettelmann. “It has been a long career and being home in front of my friends and family, it’s unbelievable.” Goettelmann is just one piece starting to click on a surging Long Island offense that turned a 3-0 first quarter deficit into a 7-4 halftime lead. The Lizards have had a player named MLL Offensive MVP each of the last three weeks with attackman Zack Greer taking home the award in week eight, attackman and Farmingdale native Matt Danowski in week nine and midfielder Stephen Berger in week ten. “I knew we were going to come back,” Lizards coach Jim Mule says, “You don’t want to go down three nothing in a game, but we were able to play the way we wanted to play and came back.” The Lizards were given the opportunity to come back because of their defense, which has been stellar all season. The Long Island defensive unit has allowed just 133 goals in their twelve games. “When [the defense] are on their A game, our offense feeds off of them. When they step it up, we are right behind them and we are going to finish the job when they make a stop,” says Berger. “To have the D clicking right now is
awesome and down the stretch we need that. Our goalie is playing unbelievable, Drew Adams, and our transition game has been great with Nicky (Polanco), John Orsen and Ricky Pages is back. Then you throw in Parker (McKee) and (Mike) Ward and (Dan) Cocchi. “We can run with anybody. It’s going to be a big contributor to our success if our D keeps playing the way that they do.” It was the defense that has allowed the Lizards to stay in so many games and has allowed the offense to get going. They have made key stops which have transitioned directly into a fastpaced offensive attack. The unit has been further solidified by the arrival of first-round draft pick Parker McKee of the NCAA National Champion Duke Blue Devils. “The fast pace of the game, the no horns and the shot clock favored my style of play,” McKee says. “At Duke, we wanted to score 15 goals a game. The only way you do that is by getting goals off of faceoffs, clears and rides, and transitions. The game is high-scoring there, and that’s the same way here.” To make their win even more memorable the Lizards played in front of a crowd of over 3,800 fans at Hofstra’s Jame M. Shuart Stadium. The team took every opportunity to celebrate with their fans, many of whom surrounded the players after the game while they signed autographs and took pictures. “We owe it to the fans. They’ve been out here day in and day out. We lost a couple games early in the season and we put a show on for them the last few times. We have to keep it going, and the only way it’s gonna grow is if we continue to win and put a show on for our fans,” says defenseman Nicky Polanco. Tim Goettelmann was not the only Long Island native to celebrate a milestone; Shoreham native Peter Vlahakis became just the second player in MLL history to win 1,000 faceoffs. His contributions to the Lizards success cannot be overlooked. Coach Mule recently told Major League Lacrosse that he believes the face-off position to be “one of the most important.” “I do not think you can win in our league without having all
the pieces working together,” coach Mule said, “Great goaltending, def(ense), short-stick D midfielders, man up and man down units but it all starts at the faceoff x.” The day was set up to be a great one for the Lizards. The team received its first “award” much earlier in the day when a goal by Berger, scored for the MLL All-Star team against Team USA, was named the third best play in all of sports for the month of July by ESPN’s SportsCenter. “I got a bunch of text messages,” says Berger. “It’s pretty cool. I’m pretty excited about it and I’m pretty humbled.”
The Long Island Lizards have created the Junior Lizards program as a way to better connect with the community and help foster the growth of lacrosse on Long Island. In its second year, the program expanded to nine teams and the Lizards hope to expand even further this year. “We have a great opportunity out here to provide professional players to help out and develop the youth,” says Lizard’s general manager Casey Hilpert. “Not only the access to the players, but for the older guys, access to colleges. The college coaches that these guys are involved with – it’s a unique opportunity for these kids to pick their brain when they are at that level and are making decisions.” This year the program will expand to include girls teams for the first time. They will utilize the Lady Lizards, a post-collegiate women’s team that includes All-Americans and members of Team USA, as coaches and program directors. The Lady Lizards travel around the country playing in tournaments in places such as Lake Placid, NY; Vail, CO; and Ocean City, MD. “All of our coaches are either college players or just out of college. We feel that it just provides a different level,” Hilpert says. “They come out here and they want to teach the kids,and that’s all it’s about for them. There’s nothing else that matters to them.”
Sport Sports psychology
Every athlete has been in the Zone but usually not for long. The Zone is the place where the ball gets bigger, the game slows and your performance excels like never before. It’s the game where you know the ball is going in, the match will be won and the score will be your career best. Wouldn’t it be nice to play that way every game? The Zone is the holy grail of sports. It’s the pace that everyone seeks but few can find, and here is why: the accumulation of competitive pressure, failure, loss,
disappointment and injury will eventually impact your game. You will become hesitant, tight, over analytic and doubtful and you are then out of the Zone – maybe for good. Sadly this is the norm and the reason athletes so rarely play to their full promise and full potential. So how do you get back to the Zone? The first thing we must do is to define the Zone. To play in the Zone means to play with confidence, focus, pleasure, relaxation and aggression. Each of these aspects of the Zone is needed. Confidence means you truly know how good you are. Focus means you see the game as it comes to you. Tiffeny Milbrett, the soccer superstar once said she has learned to take what the game gives her. In other words, she is in the present. Pleasure means you are enjoying the game and relaxation means you are able to overcome any anxiety that
may be around. Playing with aggression means you are free and are permitting yourself win. So how exactly do you achieve these states of mind? I believe the best way to find the Zone is to have a pre-game ritual that introduces it to you. You need to visualize this state of consciousness. To do this you must become quiet and still. This is the function of the team prayer but they do not go far enough in the effort. Find a place to be alone. First just watch yourself breathe and
ts ps let the relaxation come into you. This is when you can begin to let your true self emerge. That inner self that knows how to win and who wants to win. All you need to do is to give yourself permission to be your true self. Often the true you gets buried and lost in all the stress of the season and needs to be reawakened. Every sport requires you to bring confidence, visual focus, relaxation and a will to win. You must create a quiet private place before the game to find yourself and let your true talent come out. It is like unlocking a door and letting the real you emerge at last. Establish
a ritual and meditative place for this to happen may give you a better chance to find the magic of Zone and your true self. Good luck and let me know how you do. Dr Tom Ferraro is a noted sport psychologist working with elite and professional athletes on performance enhancement, team dynamics and the proper diagnosis and treatment of the athlete in need. He can be reached at email@example.com or (516) 248-7189 and is located in Williston Park, in Mid Nassau County.
By Luis Cova Photos By Sam Barreto
If you are one of many mixed martial arts fans and you live on Long Island you are sure to know who Matt Serra is. Many know him from watching his fights in the UFC, The Ultimate Fighter reality show on Spike TV and when he became the stuff of Long Island legends when he did what few thought was possible; knock out the then-current World Champion to win the title of Welterweight Champion of the World. Who would have thought that a local kid from East Meadow would one day become champion of the world? Many know of him but few know who he is and what he is all about. It’s all about “people helping people,” as Matt says. There are a select few who have gotten to know him on a personal level and Serra is a teacher and friend to a lot of them. See, Matt is not only a UFC fighter but is also an instructor, and together with his brother Nick they run two Serra Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) academies in East Meadow and Huntington. Serra has been Instructing BJJ long before
opening his own gym, and the role of passing his knowledge of the sport came natural to him when Renzo Gracie gave him his first shot as an instructor. “Since the late or mid 90s, I’ve been teaching for Renzo Gracie in Manhattan,” said Serra. “I was not only training there, but he took me under his wing. I was working a night security job just so I could learn jiu-jitsu in the city. I was showing up tired and miserable, so he told me to quit that job and he gave me one teaching for him.” It’s no coincidence that Serra would cross paths with the Gracie family, who are often regarded as BJJ royalty. Serra started out learning kung-fu from his father who is a long time martial artist. To Serra, kung-fu was fun but it lacked something. According to Serra his life changed when his father showed him a Brazilian jiu-jitsu tape. “When I was around 16 or 17, he showed me a tape of the Gracie family called Gracie’s in
Action,” said Matt. “It was more style versus style, like their style versus karate, versus kung-fu, in these events called “Vale Tutto,” which is “anything goes” in Brazil. It was the effectiveness of ground fighting and I was just taken by it.” The grappling in BJJ was more of a real-situation fighting style for Matt and it was what was missing from kung-fu. Matt Serra had found his passion and his life would never be the same. In 1999, Serra won the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Pan American games as a brown belt, and would then go on to earn his black belt in 2000. Although the Gracie’s helped make Serra into a serious BJJ practitioner they were not the only ones who helped shape Serra into an ultimate fighter. Ray Longo, who Serra met when he was 17, was integral part of the equation. “Everything Renzo Gracie did for me with BJJ, Ray Longo did for my physical ability as far as getting me in shape for my fights,” Serra said. “Not to mention, I owe him my title. He worked on my striking ability and was very patient with me. He got my striking to where it is today.” In 2001, Serra stepped into the octagon for the first time during his debut at UFC 31, and although he lost that night he knew he belonged in the UFC and could one day be a champion. Serra lives by the motto: “victory belongs to the most persevering” and his perseverance paid off in 2006 when Matt Serra was cast as a member on season four of the Spike TV reality show, The Ultimate Fighter: The Comeback. The show featured current UFC fighters who would compete to earn a title shot. Serra made the most of his opportunity by winning the Welterweight division and later fighting for the title against a heavily favored Georges St. Pierre.
On April 7, 2007, Serra would go on to shock the MMA world by winning the fight by TKO in the first round. Summing up one of the most memorable nights in his career Serra said, “When I beat GSP for the Welterweight title, I’m gonna tell you right now, it didn’t suck. It was a good day in the office,” Serra said. He then added, “Biggest upset in UFC history, I felt like I lived a movie right there. You ever see Cinderella Man with Russell Crowe? Ever see a movie called Rocky? This guy lived it.” After winning the title Serra came back and continued to teach at his academies whenever he could. He experienced an influx of younger people signing up to take classes, and reflected back on his own experiences as a youngster. “I graduated from East Meadow High School, it was awesome,” Matt said. “I wish I would have had Brazilian jiu-jitsu as a kid, I used to mess around with sports, but I wasn’t really doing anything. I used to play around with my friends, but if I would have had Brazilian jiu-jitsu back then it would have been a good outlet for me. Nowadays, I see kids like myself, they have an outlet now. If they don’t want to do anything in school they can do Brazilian jiu-jitsu, have a release, and not be so macho, but use it in a positive way.”
Helping others find an outlet may have been a part of the inspiration to open up his own BJJ School. “I love Brazilian jiu-jitsu first of all, and even though I have guys underneath me, Lou Cuomo, Pete “Drago” Sell, if you look around, 85-90 percent of the guys in here don’t want to fight in the UFC, they don’t want to fight in a cage. They want to learn how to defend themselves, they want to lose weight, they want to get in shape instead of just being on a treadmill.” Talking about his role as a teacher and his gym Serra says, “I like teaching all walks of life, I enjoy it. When I’m not doing that, what am I doing? I’m here teaching, doing stuff I love.” Although BJJ is a great sport to get into, there are a few misconceptions about the sport. Younger fans don’t always realize how much work goes into it. According to Serra, “with the popularity of the UFC and mixed martial arts in general, you have a lot of guys coming in saying like, ‘I want to fight I want to fight.’ There is no rushing your training. So they try to do everything all at once and end up being a jack of all trades and a master of none. I spent years and years of grappling, grappling, grappling, and then working on some of my striking.” It should be known that the Serra BJJ academies are not only for those looking to launch a fighting career.
“Everybody’s welcome here unless you are a Long Island knucklehead,” said Serra. “As long as you come in with a good attitude, anyone who wants to have a good time, learn martial arts whether it’s BJJ, Muay Thai, even wrestling – it’s a good atmosphere. We’ve got kids from eight years old, to guys in their fifties. They come here, it’s a release, and again you don’t have to want to be a cage fighter to train here. It’s as simple as wanting to learn a martial art, and hang out with good people. It’s a good release.” Matt Serra and his academies are not just about pursuing his own dreams it’s about helping others pursue their own. When describing Serra, Mike Piccolomini, an instructor at Serra BJJ since 2001, might have said it best. “He’s not in it for the money, he could go to where all the jiu-jitsu guys go. Matt’s a hometown guy. If you know that, he’s very close with his family, all of his students, and his instructors, it’s just one big family.”
Story By: Courtney Pustay Photos Courtesy Of: Louis Viteritti and Steve Caputo
One day during a practice at John Glenn High School in East Northport, New York, Angelo Viteritti allowed his teammates to take shots - nobody scored on him. His head coach, Lou Hanner, took notice and put him in goal during the next game. From there on it only felt natural to Viteritti. Viteritti’s former coach and teammates will be wishing him the very best as he makes his way to Italy this summer as the 19-year-old goalkeeper will be playing professional soccer with one of Italy’s most prestigious teams, Chievo Verona.“Growing up I played for Commack’s club team and they took a lot of very talented kids. As we were getting older we would always be in the top division,” Viteritti says. “As you get older, you start going to showcases, tournaments and playing against other top clubs in the country while college coaches come to watch you. That always helped me out - I was playing against the best possible players.”This past February, Viteritti was in a tournament in Italy. He discovered Chievo Verona was interested in him and wanted to see him play more following his first tournament game.“When he had this
opportunity to go to Italy, it was remarkable how things happened,” Hanner said. “He played in a game where he got a lot of activity. He was in the spotlight the whole game.” Viteritti was happy to have the opportunity to compete in Italy and did not expect to garner the attention he ended up receiving. “I thought I was just going to go there to have an experience and to have a good time while playing against some of the very best youth teams in the world,” he said. “I definitely did not know that I would be going back.”Originally Viteritti had plans to attend Towson University in Maryland, but decided to forgo college and focus solely on his game. He understands the importance of a higher education, but does not want to second guess a potentially missed opportunity to play professional soccer. “From what I hear, college life is great. I’ll probably miss out on it but I definitely could not have passed this up,” Viteritti says. “I made the decision by myself, obviously my parents weren’t going to disagree with it, they wanted me to try. That was a win-win.
“It’s not something that I would ever think about reconsidering. If you love doing what you are you doing, then you should definitely try to continue.” Angelo is the eldest of seven children. His highly supportive, old-fashioned Italian family wants nothing but they best for him and he receives a tremendous amount of encouragement off and on the field. “His mom and dad are at every game,” Hanner said. With words of wisdom beyond his years and an immense amount of dedication and heart, Viteritti is just a few steps away from achieving all of his athletic goals - he is determined to become Italy’s top goalkeeper. “It’s kind of surreal. I guess that in our positions, as his coaches, so many guys go around their whole careers never coaching a pro. He’s going to be a semi-pro. His goal is to go over there and make the B-team and aspire to the A-team,” Hanner says. “He certainly has passion. This is his sport. It’s been a dream for him to play professional soccer.”Viteritti is thankful for everything he has learned from his coaches at Glenn. The coaches have been striving to build a mentality within their players in order for them to become more dedicated. They focus on discipline, an area in which Viteritti clearly succeeds. “Angelo has been working real hard; he’s been training and lifting weights. [Chievo Verona] told him they wanted him around 195 [pounds]; he’s 6 feet 2 inches, 197 lbs,” Hanner says. “He’s going to succeed no matter what he does. I’m just proud to have been a part of his background. “He will succeed in life because he is a tremendous young man.”
By Courtney Pustay Photos By UA Production Department The Eastern Suffolk BOCES Aviation program has been growing apace. Many high school students are choosing to attend hoping to fulfill their dreams aboard a professional aviation career. According to BOCES, their program is committed to doing so through providing them with mechanical, technical and instinctive skills. The aviation academy offers an abundance of educational opportunities ranging from Professional Pilot Training to Airframe Mechanics. The academy briefly outlines on their website the major goal of the Pre-professional Pilot Program, which is to provide foundation skills in complex situations, aircraft operation, airport facilities, navigation systems, weather, safety and physiological factors. By completing such coursework, students are then able to achieve a private pilot certificate and hopefully jobs such as being a pilot, aircraft dispatcher, air traffic controller, ground instructor, aircraft ground handler even airport manager. â€œThe hope is that the students who go into the Professional Pilot Program end up with a private pilot license and then shortly after that they can either begin looking at either getting a certificate in ground instruction or getting their instrument rating. Many of our students do go onto college. Some can make extra dollars while they are in college with proper certification. Many of our students go onto some type of aviation college, the military, even other directions,â€? said Mr. Joseph Delgado, CTE Program Administrator. As for the Airframe Mechanics Program, Eastern Suffolk BOCES focuses on teaching skills which are required
to be an “A” technician while administering a written and oral exam with the Federal Aviation Administration for the Mechanics Certificate Airframe. Students who under-go this specialized program later find employment as an aircraft crew chief, hydraulic mechanic, ground power mechanic, member of the armed forces, sheet metal specialist, airframe mechanic, aircraft welding specialist and aircraft electrical technician. “One of the things about going to college here at the Suffolk Aviation is we have many relation agreements with colleges throughout the country. So a student who comes here can easily pick-up anywhere from 6-8 credits as they transfer,” said Delgato. The Academy provides their students with a Career and Technical Education Integrated Curriculum. Through the curriculum, high school students must first pass the New York State Regents then they can acquire “sequence credit” in English, Math and Science. Students are welcome to come here at the 11th or 12 grade level. During a possible candidate’s 10th grade year, they should begin to discuss their future with their high school guidance counselors and let them know they are interested in a career in aviation at the academy. “At the 10th grade level, they are able to come over. And then, of course, in the 11th grade level they enter and we provide a first year and second year program for them in aviation. Students come to us either in the morning or the afternoon and attend their local high school during the rest of the day. We welcome any kind of student. We take students who are IEP because we encourage public education and we want all students to have an experience and career in aviation. I think that one of the things that we have going for us is that we have a group of teachers who are dedicated to the students teaching them to be great pilots, great mechanics, teaching them to be and enjoy the career of aviation,” said Delgado. “BOCES is not your typical high school. It’s your career and your future.” said Christopher Linnen, a student at the academy with a federal professional pilot certificate at 19 years old. “Flying is something to look forward to. I used to hate
Aerial shots over Long Island
education. It helped me mature though. I was a high school goth. I’m still a metal-head but I’m also a pilot.” “He’s a very charming person. He’s very intelligent but he’s like two different people. When you first see him, he has a very unique way of dressing. Sometimes the way people dress, you get an impression of them and mine was wrong about him. When I first saw Christopher, I didn’t give him more than two weeks here at the academy. He proved me wrong with hard-work and his dedication. The fact that he can transfer from that personality he presents during his leisure time, to the person he is when he comes in to the academy and puts on a uniform really says-I’m ready to be a pilot,” remarked Delgado. “I used to want to be a commercial pilot but I don’t want to anymore. Air traffic controlling, nope. Aviation management came around (nodding his head), that was my click. Right then and there.” said Linnen. Students like Christopher usually have a very strong interest in machinery and strong mechanical minds. For as long as he can remember, he has always loved trains and airplanes starting at a very young age. However, despite his love for aviation, Christopher admits there are plenty of challenges during flight. It is not a time for fun and games. “Aviation has many challenges. Weather is one of them. Mother Nature is one of the most dangerous things on earth. I have heard and read many stories about people who survived and unfortunately those who didn’t survive,” Linnen said. Safety is something that both the academy and Christopher stress on a daily basis. During a student’s first year they may learn basics such as mathematical calculations, symbols, charts, certain procedures and aerodynamics. As for their second year, their learning is geared towards a deeper understanding of advanced calculations, commercial maneuvers, fundamentals of instruction even advanced instruction. “Flying is my passion. I feed off education now. All I want to do is learn something every day or experience something every day. I go to bed knowing I accomplished something,” mentioned Linnen. “His passion is far beyond mine,” insisted Delgado. “He’s extremely thorough. To be a pilot, you must be. You have to keep notice of everything at all times and
not allow one thing to drop. He’s organized and extremely attentive to detail, especially details of safety. This young man is looking for a career in aviation. I am sure he will get whatever it is that he sets himself out to be, whether it is a managerial position or director of an airport, if he decides to go in that direction. He really can be anything he wants to be.” Students at the academy are currently looking forward to completing coursework and gaining their proper federal certification in order to advance their careers and enrich their lives. Many find a sense of confidence and control through the time spent at the academy. That is one lesson which cannot be taught in a classroom, but through solid hands-on experience. “We are a very tight knit family here. We take care of each other and we help one another out. It’s a really great place to be when you are in high school because how many kids actually get a chance to step into a plane, fly from here to Hartford or Poughkeepsie and back, then have their parents pick them up cause they can’t drive? ” chuckled Delgado.
By Jaclynkelli Kronemberg Photos By Luis Cova
During the summer there are numerous outdoor activities to get involved in. One sport that is growing in popularity is beach volleyball. “There is nothing better than going to the beach and playing volleyball,” Richard Heiles East End Volleyball director said. East End Volleyball got started 33 years ago when Richard Heiles and a few guys were sitting on a beach and decided they wanted to start a beach volleyball tournament. East End Volleyball is now the biggest amateur volleyball league on the east coast and they run tournaments from Rhode Island down to Florida. Anyone can join at any age and play either competitively or recreationally. “Everyone can play,” Heiles said, “You can play from age 8 to 80 it’s a great sport and it is fun.” They have adult and junior leagues and if you do not have your own team you can come and be picked up by a team at any time.
“It is a very well organized, well run program the kids seem to be enjoying themselves and it is enjoyable for the parents to sit at the beach and watch,” Linda Jurs parent of a child in the junior program said. Registration begins at the end of January and it fills up fast. “We end up turning some teams away because it fills up so fast,” Heiles said. The leagues run from Memorial Day through Labor Day and tournaments run from March through October. There are 10 nets in East Quogue that are used one night a week, 45 nets in Long Beach that are used two nights a week and 43 nets in Cedar Beach that are used four nights a week. “Our busiest night is Tuesday night,” Heiles said, “We have leagues all over and over 100 nets are being used that night.” East End Volleyball also has a clinic program to teach beach volleyball. Anyone at any age can join this program to learn how to play.
They currently have over 4,000 people in the leagues and have 35 events a year for the adult leagues. Tournaments are played on the weekends and mostly run one day but sometimes they can last two days. “With the tournaments the teams play four to six games and if they make it to the championship and win they could end up playing twice that many,” Heiles said. Last year in the adult tournament league they gave away $75,000 in prize money and will mostly likely give away the same amount of prize money this year. The last big northern tournament takes place at Bally’s casino in Atlantic City at the end of August. This year the junior program has seen a rise in the amount of kids that want to join. “When I first started coaching here four years ago there were only kids from Copiague and Sayville,” Russel Smith junior program coach said, “This is the first year I am seeing kids from Babylon, every year it’s getting bigger and bigger.” “I found this program which I was so happy to find because I was trying to find a sport for my son to play and my husband and I love beach volleyball and
also play,” Jennifer Cassenda, parent of a child in the junior program said, “There is not that much for boys volleyball at this young of an age, this is a great program.” The junior program is sponsored by Rox volleyball and anyone from the ages of 8-18 can join and when you register your child gets a tee shirt and Wilson volleyball. The kids are broken up into age groups and are usually 12 kids to a net. “We have clinics and junior tournaments to give the kids a taste of what it is like to play on the beach and sand with only two people on the court which is a lot different than high school,” Barbra Olsen Copiague junior varsity coach and junior program coach said.
Each group of kids has a coach that teaches them techniques, helps them fine tune their skills and explains if they are doing something wrong and how to fix it. “All the coaches have either played in college, coached high school, coached college, play volleyball and won tournaments,” Olsen said, “They have all been involved in volleyball for some time.” “The coaches have been really good, really patient and they keep the kids involved and interested,” Cassenda said. They do not score the games because they do not want the focus to be on placing they want the focus to be on learning the sport. “I enjoy this program it helps me to learn the rules and makes me jump higher when I play indoors for school,” Paola Tobon, Connetquot high school volleyball player said. The juniors program is held every Tuesday from 615 pm until sunset. To get a parking spot you have to get there on time because the parking lot fills up fast. “Junior beach volleyball is starting to get more recognition because the NCAA is picking it up as a sport,” Heiles said. Right now in the program they have 170 plus kids that joined the junior program and expect that number to continue to go up in the years to come. “This is my first year here and I really enjoy coming and playing on the beach,” Christina Hickey Connetquot high school volleyball player said, “I want to come back again next year.” This year East End Volleyball held a free juniors doubles tournament at Long Beach in June and 80 teams showed up to participate in it. Beach volleyball just got approved by the NCAA to become a college sport and will start in 2011. East End Volleyball has already seen a rise in the number of participants in the juniors program because of this. They anticipate that the junior program will become more popular because it is becoming a college sport. East End Volleyball has 10 junior tournaments a season and plan to make more events in the junior division next year to accommodate more teams. This year they started a junior girls tournament and had six teams sign up. “Six teams is good considering we just started it this year,” Heiles said. The junior doubles tournaments travel from Rhode Island to Florida just like the adult league. The junior program also has clinics and recreational play. Anyone can sign up for the juniors program at any age and start learning beach volleyball just for fun or get better and play competitively. “I love this program, it’s definitely different then indoor volleyball but it helps me improve on my skills for school,” Madison Fulford, St. Anthony’s high school volleyball player said, “I love the coaches and I am close with all of them, they are really helpful.” v This year East End Volleyball is sponsoring two players on a professional team. Steve Grotowski and Mike DiPierro used to play on a league for East End Volleyball. Phil Dalhausser won an Olympic gold medal in Beijing playing beach volleyball. Dalhausser came out of an East End Volleyball tournament team in Florida. “I hope everyone comes out to play,” Heiles said, “It is a sport you never get tired of and it’s a great way to get out, meet people and have fun.”
Ebby Johnson is a senior in high school, and has all of the traits of your regular well-rounded, geared-to-succeed eighteen-year old. He holds the title of valedictorian, and is preparing for college by participating in an internship. He likes sports, has a passion for art, and is active in his church. But, belonging to the Deaf community makes Ebby’s achievements even more admirable. Fortunately for this young man, Long Island holds a gem in the winding hills of Long Island’s north shore town of Mill Neck, an organization with loving, open arms called the Mill Neck Manor School for the Deaf. The Mill Neck Manor School offers programs for children who are deaf and hard of hearing from birth to age 21. It is where Ebby currently attends high school since moving here from Indiana in 2002, and provides him with the culture he can relate to. “It’s very sad. When I was born, my parents thought I was hearing until I was about two years old,” said Ebby, through a sign language interpreter. “I didn’t talk. When they found out I was deaf, they were kind of stuck. I wanted to go where my friends were, so I came here. My parents encouraged me, and through school, family, and friends, I have learned to become successful.” Both of Ebby’s parents are hearing, as are his two older brothers who are already in college. He has a few hearing friends, but more deaf friends. He says he loves having other friends, but with the hearing world, it is simply just hard to communicate. He has tried a hearing aid five different times, and is not a fan of lip reading, therefore his communication of choice has become ASL, American Sign Language. “It’s not always easy to communicate with the hearing world,” said Ebby. “When I came here to Mill Neck, I knew that it was important to have goals and to be careful about what I do in my life.”
“It’s been a struggle, but he’s determined,” said Mary Jo Depalo, a social studies teacher at Mill Neck who has taught Ebby since seventh grade. “The students who succeed are not always the brightest, but the ones who are the most motivated. He definitely has that, it’s just innate.” “His communication skills and social interactions have really changed for him,” said Kathleen Kerzner, principal of the Mill Neck Manor School for the Deaf. “He feels confident as a learner, and has developed a very positive self image. He is a young man who is very courageous, because he faces his hearing impairment very uniquely. He doesn’t see himself as hearing impaired, he sees himself as typical and addresses his academics and social interactions just as it is.” Ebby has made the best of his time at Mill Neck by becoming involved in many activities, where he has proved his skills to be beyond expectations. Academically, Ebby has been very successful, as evident from his achievement of securing the valedictorian position of his graduating class. He is known to always go above and beyond the minimum, such as participating in an academic bowl where deaf schools in the northeast compete, and constantly studying the material in order to be victorious. “I call him the Renaissance man,” said Depalo. “Because he’s really good at
everything.” “Besides making sure his academic work is done on time, he looks for extra work, accepts challenges, and is just an allaround great young man,” said Kerzner. When Ebby wanted work experience, he took the initiative to ask his teachers how he could do so. They introduced him to their Capstones program, which is about preparing young adults and students for work. According to Mrs. Kerzner, he immediately wanted to work in the elementary classrooms. Now, two times a week, he goes in and actually works teaching first grade students, either assisting the teacher during perhaps a science lesson, or conducting his own drawing classes. “He’s always been very mature,” said Lisa Bonacia, the first grade teacher whose class Ebby assists. “I knew he was going to great. He doesn’t act silly with the kids and is very patient with them. He sits with them, explains it, and it’s great having him here.” “He’s not just back there acting as an assistant,” said Kerzner. “He gets right in there and interacts with both the children who are speaking and the ones who are signing. He knows what he needs to do and he will be successful.” “The kids adore him,” said Depalo. “If they pass him in the hallway they scream, ‘Ebby, Ebby, Ebby!’ They love him.
He’s immediately likeable.” “It’s really easy to love them,” said Ebby. “I have fun. Kids always love drawing, and I love doing that.” Athletically, Ebby has involved himself in basketball and soccer for the past eight years. He is very talented at each of the sports, and a good role model as well. “He’s a leader on the court, and is also the student who encourages the freshman and 7th and 8th graders,” said Kerzner. “He takes them under his wing, takes them along, and makes them a little bit more comfortable.” “I practice hard, I work hard on a team, and that makes me happy,” said Ebby. “I work hard, I play hard, and I am part of the team. I study a lot, and I feel I’ve improved when I worked on a team.” With all of these gifts, it is easy to wonder where Ebby gets his courage from to fight through his lack of hearing. It is indeed God and religion that Ebby holds so dear and thanks him for all of his strength. “Nothing is perfect in the world and certainly you have to accept that, but, through God, you can accept suffering,” said Ebby. “So, I try, and I notice, that there is success, and God gives us that. There are many things that God gives us. I’ve become friends with God. I have a relationship with God in my heart.”
Ebby has a deep passion for his church, which is also part of the deaf community, and believes that it is there that his future lies. “What’s most important is your relationship with God, and I want to teach people in the world that you can learn to be powerful with Love,” said Ebby. As for Ebby’s future, it is unanimous that he would be successful in any field he so chooses. “He can do whatever he wants,” said Depalo. “He’s a really skilled artist, and some people are disappointed he’s not going into that field, because he’s so talented. It’s amazing, it’s just a natural talent. I don’t know how you work art into theology, maybe he will figure out a way to do that, who knows. I think the possibilities are endless; he can do whatever he wants. He has the determination, and the drive.” “He doesn’t even realize how skilled he is,” Kerzner concluded.” He’s just a kind and unique young man and we are very happy to have him at this school.” “I don’t know if I will be successful, but I do have goals,” said Ebby. “I want to help the world. I want to be a successful communicator, and I want to show love. There are so many problems, there is so much conflict, and enemies in the world. I want to help the world. Love it the power that can help the world, and I feel that I want to become a reverend, for the deaf, for the hearing, for everyone.”
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Story By: Fred McGaughan St. James, NY- Jim Liu, 14, a rising sophomore at the Knox School became the youngest winner of the U.S. Junior Amateur Golf Championship, replacing Tiger Woods who first won that prestigious tournament at 15 years old. Liu, who resides in Smithtown, NY, captured the title with a 4-and-2 victory over Justin Thomas of Goshen, Kentucky in a nearly flawless 36 hole finals performance at Egypt Valley Country Club in Ada, Michigan. Golfweek Magazine reports “for Liu, it was the first large-scale, national triumph in what figures to be a career full of them. In 2005, as a 9 year old, he shot a 59 at a Junior Golf Tour event, and he is a four-time winner of the U.S. Kids World Championship, the only player to accomplish such a feat.” Liu occasionally trains with John Anselmo, a revered swing coach who advised Tiger Woods during his three consecutive Junior Amateur victories in the '90s. “I think [Anselmo] is going to be real proud of me,” says Liu. “We've been working real hard, and it finally paid off. It's an honor to be part of this, but to break Tiger's record is just a big plus.” With four more years of eligibility for the Junior Amateur's, Jim Liu will certainly be one of the world's young golfers to watch.
Story By: Ken Ryan
Photos By: Adil Borluca
The rivalry in boys lacrosse between St. Anthony’s and Chaminade is among the fiercest anywhere, not just Long Island. The two powers usually battle for CHSAA supremacy, and this year the teams split their first two games in intensely close games before St. Anthony’s prevailed in the championship game, again by the narrowest of margins. If St. Anthony’s-Chaminade isn’t the best rivalry among the boys on Long Island, then perhaps Manhasset-Garden City is. One thing is for sure: it is the oldest rivalry. In fact, the annual Woodstick Classic between Manhasset and Garden City is the longest uninterrupted public school rivalry in the United States, going back 119 years of consecutive games between these gilded programs. But this summer, St. Anthony’sChaminade and Manhasset-Garden City come together as teammates on the Long Island Express club lacrosse team. Coach Mike DeMeo’s squad of rising sophomores is heavily represented with St. Anthony’s (seven players) and Chaminade (six players). The St. Anthony’s players are Brandon Cortazar, midfielder; Brent Diorio, midfielder; Cody Katter, defense; Matthew Koerner, attack; Nick Koshansky, midfield; John Puckhaber, midfield; and Conner Keneally, defense. Chaminade’s representatives are Jack Carrigan, defense; Brian Dunne, defense; Danny Fowler, goal; Ryan Lukacovic, attack; Brendan O’Callaghan, attack; and Brian Pratt, midfield. DeMeo, who coaches at Chaminade during the school year, is joined in the Express program by coaches from both Cath-
olic schools. “It’s amazing how they all get along,” DeMeo said of the players. “Lacrosse is a very small world. Four years from now, some of these kids might be roommates in college.” The Long Island Express 2013 team is one of several the program fields. On the Express, there are six boys teams and six girls teams. Club lacrosse programs are booming across Long Island for both girls and boys, where literally thousands of players spend good money to compete on travel teams with the hope of being recruited. DeMeo said this year alone five or six new club teams have opened up on Long Island. Since Long Island is a hotbed for college lacrosse, many of the Express players, as well as those on other club teams, are vying to be seen by college coaches. Players try out for the Express in January and get selected to a specific team. Once the high school season ends, theirs begins. The Express typically plays in five or six summer tournaments. DeMeo’s 22-player squad has won one tour-
nament, finished second in another, and advanced to the semifinals in another. “We have a really good team, with a lot of kids of equal ability,” he said. DeMeo said he doesn’t have any issues with playing time. Everyone gets their minutes, which is also out of necessity since some tournaments feature multiple games in a given day. “We’re trying to get these kids better,” DeMeo said. The coaches who make up the Express include some big names in lacrosse circles, among them Jack Moran and Keith Wieczorek, head coaches of Chaminade and St. Anthony’s, respectively; Jamie Allen, a two-time national champion as a player at North Carolina; and Mike Schwalje and Mike Chanenchuk of St. Anthony’s.
Since recruiting is such a major part of the Express program, the club’s website (liexpresslacrosse.com) offers advice on what players should do as they approach the end of their high school career. Their checklist for Under-17 players includes the following: 1) Log on to NCAA Clearing House to check if you’ve taken the approved classes; 2) Get in touch with all the coaches that have contacted you; 3) If you are interested in those schools, let us know and we will support you with letters or phone calls; 4) If you are not interested in those schools, let the coaches know as well by contacting them and THANKING them for their time and interest; 5) Email or call those schools that you want to go to, but have not been contacted by the coach yet. You will need to find out if there is a chance for you to play lacrosse at that school. If not, you will need to move on to other schools that you are interested in.
Garden City HS att
St. Anthony’s def
Manhasset HS def
St. Anthony’s mid
St. Anthony’s mid
Kevin Braddish James Clarke
Patrick Coleman Tom Lavelle Brian Pratt
Brendan O’Callaghan Ryan Lukacovic Jack Carrigan Brian Dunne
West Islip HS att
Manhasset HS mid Manhasset HS def Manhasset HS att Chaminade mid Chaminade att Chaminade att
Chaminade def Chaminade def
Matthew Koerner Conner Keneally Brandon Cortazar Anthony Delosreyes Peter Marino
Sean Tomlinson Garrett Doran
St. Anthony’s att
HHH East HS goal
Smithtown East HS def
Wantagh HS mid
Green Vale School mid
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They can deny it all they want, but there was a good amount of people who became instant soccer fans all across the United States sometime after June 11th. The 2010 World Cup from South Africa will be remembered for many things – including Spain’s one-to-nil, extra time victory over the Netherlands in the final – and just may go down as the tournament that caused the most popular sport around the globe to finally catch on in this country, something that it has been trying to do for years. Perhaps no other player captured the attention (and hearts) of fans than Landon Donovan. The midfielder scored three goals during the tournament and became only the third American to score in more than one World Cup (Brian McBride and Clint Dempsey also accomplished that feat.) The 28-yearold had already endeared himself to the American fans by being a mainstay
in Major League Soccer for both the San Jose Earthquakes and Los Angeles Galaxy since the 2001 season. He has also played internationally for Bayer Leverkusen (Germany), FC Bayern Munich (Germany) and Everton (England). Donovan scored the United States’ only goal in their final World Cup game, a 2-1, extra time loss to Ghana. “The finality of it is brutal,” he said following the match in South Africa. “You realize how much you’ve put into it, not just the last four years, but your whole life. There’s no guarantee there’s another opportunity at that. It’s disappointing.” Another player who came to light recently was goalkeeper Tim Howard, who was able to accentuate the positives and the big picture. “I think we’ve gotten better,” he commented. “I think that shows in the last month and certainly in the last year with the Confederations Cup. We’ve gotten better but still have a ways to go.” That last statement is a microcosm of what the sport means to the American people. In a country fixated with the NFL and Major League Baseball, the game of soccer has been struggling for the attention of the people and media alike. Perhaps by interjecting a little patriotism into the mix will make a difference in the long run. “We always understand the responsibility we have as a national team to show how far the game has come in the United States, to fight for respect,” said Team USA head coach Bob Bradley. “As we went through the first round, we felt that we were continuing to go in that direction.”
CORNE LANDON DONOVAN
Not only did the U.S. make the knockout round, but won their overall group in the opening set of games. That hasn’t been accomplished since 1930, so it was certainly something to be proud of. The Americans were able to overcome two disallowed goals in gaining enough points to finish ahead of England in the group. Even presidents past and present were caught up with soccer fever. Bill Clinton was in attendance in South Africa and Barack Obama reached out to the team via telephone. Bradley said that the team was “honored that [Clinton] could share that moment with us,” when the former president joined the celebration in the locker room following the 1-0 win over Algeria, which propelled the U.S. into the next round. Prior to the game, the current leader of the free world contacted Team U.S.A., prompting Bradley to echo a similar sentiment. “We’re all honored that before a big match that we would receive a call from President Obama,” the coach remarked.
America Had a Ball!!
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We will have to wait and see if the excitement lasts now that the World Cup is behind us. Attendance at MLS games has always been good in some states and not as good in others. But the positive part is that many of those teams have built soccer-specific stadiums to play in, including the New York Red Bulls. The former MetroStars played in Giants Stadium since their inception as a founding member of MLS in 1996 until moving this year into Red Bull Arena, a 25,189-seat outdoor stadium in Harrison, New Jersey. It is reasons such as that and the success of Team USA in the World Cup to believe that soccer will become an even bigger sport than it already is stateside. It may not be as popular as it is overseas, but it can definitely keep growing. Perhaps even as big as basketball or hockey around these parts someday. Regardless if sports fans admit it to themselves or not.
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Story By: Kaela Mahon
Growing up in Quogue, Sobeck was skipper on his dad’s racing sailboat and mate while his mom windsurfed. He developed a love for extreme sports such as snowboarding, surfing and motocross; finding his niche in windsurfing racing. “A big part of racing is sailing knowledge and I picked up a lot of that from my dad,” Sobeck said. At the age of eight he began sailing through the town of Southampton at Tiana Beach while attending camp at Hampton Watersports. Now 17-years-old, with 12 years of windsurfing experience, Sobeck is an instructor at Hampton Watersports working towards his Olympic dream. As a result of his dedication and talent that dream is not far out of reach. His latest and greatest feats include participating in the 2008 Olympic trials in Long Beach, California, where he took fourth place. Although impressive, only the first place athlete qualifies to sail in the games. His achievements in the race made him eligible for the U.S. Sailing team, Alphagraphics (USSTAG) where he competes in the RSX 8.5 class. He became a two-time qualifier for the team in 2010 when he completed in the Olympic Class Regatta in Miami. He qualified for Junior Worlds at 16 years old, racing the top in the world for 18-and-under. Taking first place, he became the single sailor chosen to represent the U.S. in England. He repeated his win the next year at Juniors and went to the ISAF Worlds in Canada. Sobeck is currently second in the U.S. on the Olympic board, placing him in position to qualify for the 2012 Olympic Games in London. In 2006 Sobeck and his mother, Aimee Wha-
len, moved to the beach in East Quogue so he could walk down the street and sail at anytime. He began working in the retail shop at Hampton Watersports at 13 years old. “Working at Hampton Watersports has been great to me as I believe the best way to know something thoroughly is to be able to teach it,” Sobeck said. Taking every opportunity to practice and spread passion, he teaches with Jon Ford and offers private lessons on the weekends. The shop also provides kiteboarding instruction all over the eastern end of Long Island as well as Stand-up Paddle (SUP) lessons and rentals in Southampton and Amagansett. “It takes a few years to get to a level where you are going fast and can handle heavy winds; so many people are turned off by the slow learning curve,” Sobeck says. “There are
also people who just enjoy cruising the bay, who do not need that feeling of going fast. The sport has so much variety that anyone can have fun at one aspect of it.” Sobeck’s determination allowed him to outlast the learning curve and his need for speed helped him find his passion in racing. He now travels the world for training and various competitions. He has made numerous trips to Florida and the Caribbean to participate in freestyle competitions which are comprised of aerial moves in high winds on flat water. He also consistently participates in speed racing. He finished third, first in the U.S., at Calema Midwinters in Florida; 21st in the 2006 ISAF Youth Worlds in the Olympic Class in England and third at Formula Youth Worlds in Belgium. Sobeck describes the competitions as, “similar to sailboat racing with a start line and
ment is differentiated by its 9.5-square-meter sail and board that is larger than the usual surf oriented board. This gear allows the surfer to be competitive from four knots up to 30 knots. Due to varying conditions, the sail and board must be easily tuned and this equipment allows for quick changes in positioning and tension. The stance on the board is similar to surfing and a harness is worn to take the weight off your hands and back. Being on the lighter side in terms of physique, Sobeck competes best in light wind, challenging the top racers in the world. Conversely, it is more difficult for him to hold down the sail in stronger wind without losing speed. Sobeck’s favorite conditions are during the fall and early winter months
in terms of wind and water temperature. When the conditions start to turn he has been able to train in Florida as to not miss any training time. With a lifestyle of “never-ending activity” Sobeck also plays lacrosse and soccer…in season. The surfing season has no beginning or end. Running and swimming help him to fine tune and prepare, but he cannot keep himself off the board.
Story By: James Crepea Photos By: UA Magazine
Whether it’s a rainy day or the mercury is soaring and enjoying the outdoors with the family is out of the question there’s a one-stop shop for family fun and entertainment: Karts Indoor Raceway. Karts has been providing Long Islanders with excitement and friendly competition for five years. Located at 701 Union Parkway in Ronkonkoma, Karts has two indoor tracks: Junior and Pro. The Junior track gives children five to nine years of age the opportunity to race at a safe speed. Younger drivers race with up to six racers on the track in special karts, just in case junior draws inspiration from Dale Earnhardt and thinks “rubbing is racing.”
“We let them do a little bumping now and then,” says Karts’ owner, Lenny Elkins. After speeding around the track, Dakota, who came to Karts with her brother said she had one of her most fun and enjoyable days. “I like when the wind goes through your hair and you feel like you’re going really fast,” she said. For older kids and adults Karts offers a larger track which stretches 725 feet. The slick track is designed to challenge racers of all levels, allowing speeds in excess of 30 miles per hour against up to eight racers.
“They got one [track] for the kids, they got one for the adults – the big kids,” says Stephen from Smithtown who came out to Karts with his son, Stephen Jr. Racing is literally the driving force of Karts, which is designed from top to bottom around NASCAR. From the checkered flag floor to the Pitstop Café which offers hot dogs, hamburgers and pizza among other food and refreshments. “From the second you walk in you walk into a NASCAR paradise,” says Elkins. “From the walls to the karts everything has a NASCAR logo on them – you feel like a racer. We have a timing system that tells each racer where they are on the
track. When you come in you can get your race results which leads to a little bit of fun and trash talking.” If you need to take a break in between races Karts has an arcade with more than 25 video games as well as bowling. Prices for races on the Junior Track are $4 per race or $17 for five races with each race lasting 12 laps. To race on the Pro Track, drivers pay a $2 license fee and $9 for the first race with subsequent races costing $7 each or $32 for five races. Karts offers special promotional rates on its website, www.karts1.com, making fun on a budget easy. The enjoyment of kart racing is going to spread to Nassau County, possibly this year, says Elkins. “Once you sit in a kart you never want to get up,”he says.
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By: Mike Mejia, CSCS Like most young athletes, you’re probably constantly looking for ways to improve your game. You practice for hours on end, carefully monitor your diet and hit the gym with near reckless abandon. The question is, though, are you really doing everything possible to make yourself the best athlete you can be? For instance, are your workouts geared solely towards improving performance, or are you at least equally concerned about keeping your body injury free? After all, it’s awfully difficult to impress the coach from the disabled list. Unfortunately, judging by recent statistics, that’s exactly where more and more of you are ending up. According to the Centers for Disease Control, high school athletes account for an estimated 2 million injuries, 500,000 doc-
One of your best weapons in the ongoing battle against injuries is to increase your range of motion around key joints like the shoulders, hips, knees, ankles and lower back. Regular stretching can definitely help here but it depends how you go about it. Static stretching (the type where you hold a muscle in a stretched position for at least 15-20 seconds at a time) isn’t the best choice prior to activity because it doesn’t adequately prepare your muscles for the rapid contractions and relaxations they’ll be subjected to during movements like running, jumping and throwing. Instead you’ll need to make sure you’re doing plenty of dynamic flexibility, a.k.a. mobility drills.
tors visits and 30,000 hospitalizations each year- with nearly half of those injuries attributed to overuse! Much of this stems from the trend towards early specialization in a single sport and near year-round training schedules that have become so prevalent in recent years. Considering most sports involve at least some degree of repetitive motion, certain imbalances are bound to develop over time. It’s when you compound these imbalances by focusing your strengthening efforts on the same muscles you’re already overusing in your sport that you set the stage for both acute and chronic injuries that can severely limit your playing time. Luckily there’s plenty you can do to help correct the problem, it just might require you to take a different approach towards your workouts.
By requiring you to actively move your muscles through their full range of motion, mobility drills not only help loosen you up, but they also stimulate your central nervous system, making them perfect for warming-up prior to both training and athletic competition.
ts inju Begin in a push-up position. In one fluid motion, bring your right foot around until it’s just outside of your right hand. At the same time, lower your right forearm, left hip and left knee towards the ground. Hold for a second then return to the starting position and continue with the left side. Do 10-12 reps total.
Common injuries: Rotator cuff tendinitis (Impingement)
Whether you’re a swimmer, a baseball pitcher, or any other athlete who routinely does physical work with their arms positioned above their head, you’ll definitely want to work on increasing shoulder strength and stability. However, instead of just doing tons of shoulder presses and lateral raises, you’ll want to focus your training efforts on the scapular stabilizers of the upper back, as well as the external rotators. Two of the best exercises are the band Y raise and dumbbell external rotations.
After securing a light-resistance band to a sturdy object, grab the handles with a pronated (palms down) grip and hold your arms straight out in front of you. Begin by using your upper back and shoulders to bring your arms up overhead until they form a “Y” with your torso. In doing so, make sure to bring your shoulder blades down and back to help strengthen the scapular stabilizers and improve shoulder stability. Lower slowly and repeat for 10-12 reps.
sport Sports Injury
Lay on your side with your arm bent at a 90-degree angle, holding a light dumbbell. Maintaining that same angle throughout the exercise, simply rotate your forearm until it’s as close to perpendicular to the ground as possible. Lower slowly and repeat for 12-15 reps, then work the other side.
Common Injuries: Patellar tendinitis, Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) tears
Even though the former is due to overuse and the latter more acute, both these injuries are usually the end result of a common cause: a weak posterior chain. That’s just a fancy term used to describe the way the gluteals, hamstrings and lower back work together during athletic movement. Having a weak posterior chain places too much stress on the quadriceps (front of the thighs), and subsequently the knees. This holds especially true for female athletes, who suffer ACL tears a reported 3 to 6 times more frequently than their male counterparts- with the majority of these injuries being of the non-contact variety. One of the best ways to prevent this is by doing more “closed chain” lower body exercises, which cause a co-contraction of the muscles on the front and back of the thighs, leading to better knee stability. A couple of great exercises are the unilateral squat and reach and the stability ball leg curl.
Position an agility cone or light dumbbell about a foot and a half in front of, and outside of your working leg (the left leg pictured here). Bring your right foot off the floor and begin squatting down by driving the hips back and flexing the knee, as you simultaneously reach across your body and lightly touch the cone. Make sure that your knee tracks directly in line with your toes and doesn’t pinch inward, or bow out to the side. Pause for a second and come back up. Continue until you’ve completed 8-10 reps, then work the other side.
ts inju Lie on the floor with your feet and lower legs on top of a stability ball. Begin by bracing your core and lifting your hips off the ground until your body forms a diagonal line from you head to you feet. Keep your hips high as you bend your knees and pull the ball in towards you until your knees form a 90-degree angle. Pause for a second, then return the ball back out, lower and repeat until you’ve done 10-12 repetitions.
Common Injures: Sprains
Though you probably don’t think about them that much, your ankles play a crucial role in your athletic success. Every time you need to fake out an opponent, or stop on a dime, it helps to have a strong, stable ankle joint to plant on. And while exercises like calf raises can be useful, you’ll also want to include some drills that help improve the overall stability of the joint. One of the best drills you can do here is the one-legged balance.
Stand on one leg while balancing on a Dyna Disc, Airex pad or thick, folded exercise mat for 30-45 seconds at a time. For added difficulty, try shutting your eyes to help improve spatial awareness.
The final piece of the puzzle is to make sure that you’re doing everything possible to help your body to recover. This is where static stretching can be extremely beneficial; by allowing your muscles to relax and return to their resting length. Another thing you’ll definitely want to consider is using a foam roller. By promoting better blood flow to your muscles and helping to break up any adhesions and scar tissue that may have developed from overuse, foam rollers can be an athlete’s best friend! Finally, a great way to allow your muscles to regenerate after a tough workout is by using contrast showers. Alternating bouts of hot and cold water (usually for about 30-60 seconds each, for 3 rounds) helps by decreasing inflammation and speeding the removal of metabolic waste products that may have accumulated during training. You now have a three-pronged attack to help keep injuries at bay. Improving your mobility, bolstering the parts of your body that are most susceptible to injury and doing everything possible to speed your recovery, will make you a stronger, healthier athlete. Remember, it’s not all about walking into the gym and seeing how much you can lift. By training smarter, you can avoid some of the common pitfalls many of your opponents are bound to fall victim to.
Flow Society Authentic Lacrosse Gear Prepare for a wild summer. Lacrosse will never be the same. Crossover brand Flow Society lets it all hang out with a fresh line of apparel for 2010. Their wild patterns and vivid colors let Laxers be as loud as they want,both on and off the field. From the east coast argyle to the southwest rattle patterns, Flow Society is riling up the masses with their new dye sublimated shorts. The printed polyester tech mesh allows for maximum comfort whether your split dodging defenders or just kickin’ it poolside. Every single short is constructed notonly to perform, but to look as good as it feels. Ring-spun cotton tee’s add to the mix with flocking and screen printing techniques never seen on this end of the lacrosse industry. Find your Flow with a vintage laid back style or a trend setting out of the box designto complete your get-up. So ditch your tired ‘custom’ shorts and tee’s and find the perfect look with Flow Society Authentic Lacrosse Gear. The Flow is woven in. Now available at TheLaxHut.com
Immerse yourself in the adventure of a lifetime – Shark Dive.
An extreme adventure like no other, Atlantis Marine World’s Shark Dive puts you nose-to-nose with some of the ocean’s top predators, right in the middle of our 120,000-gallon Lost City of Atlantis Shark Exhibit. There’s no better or safer way to experience the captivating allure of these majestic creatures. A trained divemaster accompanies all participants,* and no diving certification is necessary – just the willingness to take on the challenge of a thrilling adventure that you’ll remember forever. Daily at 11:00am Members: $140.00 plus tax on equipment only Non-Members: $155.00 plus tax on Admission/equipment (includes Aquarium Admission)
431 East Main Street, Riverhead, NY 11901 631. 208. 9200, ext. H2O (426)
*Must be 12 or over. Ages 12-17 must be accompanied by parent/guardian.
Story By: Luis Cova Photos By: Angela Datre
During the Long Island Lacrosse Classic at Hofstra University one team stood out and it wasn’t because of their lime green uniforms. Team Relentless, from Orange County, California, was there on a mission that began in 2006 – to spread awareness about non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma for the HEADstrong Foundation. To understand the foundation’s mission you must know who Nick Colleluori was and what he stood for; after all, every player on the five club teams representing the HEADstrong Foundation do. Nick Colleluori was a three-sport athlete from Ridley, Pennsylvania who went on to play lacrosse at Hofstra. During Nick’s sophomore year he was diagnosed with NHL, a type of blood cancer, which he fought courageously for 18 months before succumbing to the disease on Nov. 28, 2006. Nick’s resiliency was present the entire time he was battling cancer; he even found the strength to play one last game with Hofstra in August 2006. Before Nick passed away he created the HEADstrong Foundation in order to raise awareness of the disease, share his story and ultimately raise money to combat the disease. Nick’s mother Cheryl made a promise to continue his mission. Chris Bryan and Mike Holloway, who grew up in eastern Pennsylvania and had a close relationship with Nick, served as founding coaches of the first HEADstrong lacrosse team. Chris wrote to local high school coaches explaining why they
should get involved in assisting with Nick’s mission to find a cure for NHL through his love and passion for lacrosse. In his letters Chris wrote, “We have faith not hope! Our faith in lacrosse and the people surrounding this game will allow us all to band together with love, support, innovative ideas and pure humanitarian good to ensure a better quality of life for people and children that will elevate this game to the next level and carry a positive legacy into the future.” Soon thereafter they started to gain support of the closelyknit lacrosse community and the HEADstrong Foundation’s message spread. Although Pennsylvania was the first state to have teams (Team Elite and Team Young Guns)
representing the HEADstrong Foundation, the word spread outside the United States to one of the most unlikely of places when Team Thailand got involved with the foundation. Joe Mascerati, one of Nick’s former teammates, helped organize the team and was surprised to find out they already knew about Nick’s story and the foundation’s mission. The HEADstrong Foundation also includes teams in New York (Team Headstrong Long Island) and Southern California (Team 27 and Team Relentless). Former Maryland lacrosse player and head coach of Team Relentless, Jason Leneau, got involved with the foundation along with some of the parents that heard Nick’s story and from coaches on the staff
who played with Nick at Hofstra. “It has been a great journey, meeting the talent we’ve come across in the two years,” Leneau says. “What we try to do is spread awareness about non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and the HEADstrong Foundation.” Team Relentless looks for kids who are going to make a difference in their community and actively spread the word of the foundation. Before they can put on the lime green each player is required to present an essay explaining what HEADstrong means to them and what it means to be part of the team. “I really think it’s important that people are taking notice of the lime green and the HEADstrong Foundation,” Leneau said. “It’s a way of paying it forward to families that are
impacted by the disease, give them an option of hope, give them the idea that ‘Hey it’s worth fighting.’” Brett Moyer, defensive coordinator for Team Relentless, echoes the thoughts of Leneau but for him the mission is more personal. Moyer grew up with Nick, playing football and lacrosse with him at Ridley High School and they continued playing lacrosse together at Hofstra. “When he was going through chemo and it was tough times for himself and his family, Nick always wanted everyone to be happy,” Moyer said. “He always worried about the people around
him rather than himself.” When it comes to the foundation, Moyer takes it very seriously and is always looking to promote what they do any way that he can. Moyer says his players do a tremendous amount of community service, going to nursing homes and various other projects. Sage Devault and Mitch Kingsley are two members of the team who love the camaraderie, saying the team has been like a family from the start. “As part of the team we give a huge commitment to the organization,” Devault says. “We also help raise money for the cause;
it’s a great team to be on.” Surprisingly enough his favorite moment is not on the field; it’s meeting the Colleluori family and hearing them talk about Nick. “It was very emotional,” Devault said. “It gets the whole team really inspired to play.” Kingsley knows what an honor it is to be on the team, which is invitation only. “I got the invitation one school night and couldn’t believe it,” he says “I couldn’t focus on my school work and it was just amazing.” Kingsley takes what he’s learned from Nick’s experience and uses it as motivation in his
own life. “Homework and tests, I know that’s much smaller than what Nick went through,” he says. “[Nick] means a ton, and every time I stop to think ‘Am I giving it my best?’ I think of him. I think of his family and give it 100 percent more.” Nick’s mom, Cheryl, serves as president of the foundation while holding down a full-time job. She and her family have worked tirelessly to fulfill Nick’s request to not only continue HEADstrong but to make it grow. “The growth has been tremendous despite the economy. We believe it’s because people can connect with us and respect what we do,” she
says. “We are just an average family who turned a negative situation into a positive one by fulfilling Nick’s request that other people benefit from the life he lived. We always knew he was special but these young men are inspired by Nick and are learning from him. “We thank the lacrosse community for embracing our cause – they are the reason for our success.”