By Meghan Byrnes, Griffin Johnson and Morgan Brang
Features Editor, Editor in Chief and Entertainment Editor
The Jamesville-Dewitt High School’s Varsity Girls golf team is coming off of an undefeated and sectional championship season in 2012. So far this season the team is 7-0 and first place in OHSL. According to sophomore Junghye Kim, their major golfers returning from last year are juniors Molly Hair and Victoria Roney, who will be playing in the one and two spots. Kim herself will be playing in the number three spot. Part of their success according to their coach, Joe Tesori, is senior captain Valerie Purcell whose “smile and energy are a positive influence.” However, their rival this season, as usual here at J-DHS, is Christian Brothers Academy who they have already beaten twice this year. Coach Tesori also said they have to be on the lookout for teams that have greatly improved since last season such as Cazenovia, Chittenango, and Skaneateles. Their undefeated record is despite the unpredictable weather at the beginning of this years spring sports season which prohibited the team from going and practicing outside. “We only got out once before our first match, but our girls worked hard on drills inside for three weeks,” said Coach Tesori. For this year’s season, the goal of the golf team is to maintain their status from last year of being undefeated sectional champions. Purcell believes the team has done very well so far and that they definitely have the ability to reach their goals.
Even though the Varsity Girls Track and Field team has not had any major meets yet, they are practicing hard for the meet against their biggest competition, East Syracuse Minoa, which is on May 1. The team is coached by Jim Lawton. Sophomores Cortney Vaughan and Emilee Carpenter agree that Rachel Fairbanks is one of their best runners this season. Some of the other runners mentioned by Vaughan are Patrece Martin, Taylor Rae Danforth and Laura Wengert who are some of their more important runners of the season. “Our goal is to win sectionals and hopefully send some people to state qualifiers,” said Vaughan.
“We have a solid team this year,” said senior Amir Nazem. The Boys Varsity Tennis team, coached by Eugene Sul, started their season out against Cortland and came out with a win. The weather did become a predicament early in the season. “We ended up practicing in the main gym much more often than usual and just setting up two tennis courts in there,” said Coach Sul. The team now has a record of 3-0 in the league and 4-0 overall, and hopes to keep the season going successfully. Some of the bigger competition for the season will be CBA and F-M, even though they are both non-league. “Everyone else we will easily defeat,” said Coach Sul. So far in their season the team has defeated Cortland, Homer, Fulton, and Manlius Pebble Hill. “We want to win all our matches and then hopefully go to sectionals in the end,” said freshman Alex Tso. According to Coach Sul, the team has a 50/50 chance to winning team sectionals over CBA. The reason the chances are half is because the J-DHS team has nine seniors, with seniors Abe Davis and Steve Procopio leading the team and contributing greatly. Another senior Jon Williams believes that the key to their success this season is their determination. “Our team is all really close,” added Williams.
They started off their season undefeated with a win on April 18 against CBA and Fowler because of their hard work in practice, according to senior Billy Hohreiter. The team has beaten CBA, Fowler, and Mexico in their first few meets this season. Many members of the team contribute their success to their coaches. “Coach Kline is a great coach and teaches us a lot,” said junior Nick Wright. The Boys Varsity Track team placed third out of 24 teams in their last invitational on April 24 at CNS. Because of their long standing legacy of dominating their competition in dual meets, there aren’t really any major rivals for the boys track team. “We usually beat most teams by at least 30 points,” said senior Mike Montañez. “There are some good individual rivalries between athletes, however, particularly within the distance group, because they run against each other in Cross Country, then Indoor Track and Outdoor Track,” added Coach William Leberman. Although the team persevered through the weather to get their three wins to start off the season, the weather did negatively affect everyone’s performances according to Coach Leberman. “The pole vault has been cancelled two weeks in a row because of the weather, which is really unfortunate because we have one of the best pole vaulters in all of Section III: Zach Liebmann,” added Coach Leberman. The goal of the runners on the team is to win all their meets and to eventually make it to states. “If a miracle happens, we wanna win states,” said Hohreiter. “We want to send a ton of people to states,” said sophomore Sam Griffiths. The coach has high hopes as well and believes that his team has the potential to do very well this year due to their large amount of talent across many of the events. “We think we have an excellent chance at taking the Sectional Championship Meet,” added Coach Leberman.
Last year’s season for the softball team was incredibly successful. They went all the way to the finals in the state tournament. According to sophomore Maddy Frank, the team has the potential to go just as far this year, if not farther. “Last year we went to states but lost in the finals. This year we want to win it all,” added junior Maggie Austin. Returning from last year, junior pitcher Kerri Keeler will be critical to the team’s success. “Kerri was our starting pitcher last year so she has a lot of experience,” said senior Mady Deveraux. Frank validates this, saying, “Kerri Keeler is a great pitcher. We are going to really need her to be on her game this year.” Frank and Austin agree that their seniors have already begun to step up for the team this season. “Our current record is 5-1 with a loss to Central Square,” said their Coach Philip Deagustine. They have only lost one game, which is surprising since the weather has kept them off the field for the start of the season. The poor weather conditions have also pushed back many of the team’s games. “We now have to play every other day or back-to-back games,” said Mr. Deagustine. As far as expectations for the season, Mr. Deagustine hopes to compete for a sectional title at the end of the season.
After starting off the season with a 5-6 record (4-3 in division play), members of the Varsity Girls Lacrosse team believe they have some work to do if they want to reach their full potential. “We’re still working out the kinks,” says senior captain Olivia Jasinski. “I think we’re still trying to find ourselves because it’s such a young team this year,” she added. After losing ten seniors, the team now includes 11 underclassmen and one eighth grader. Coach Phil Luckette realizes just how young and “relatively inexperienced” this year’s team is, but also recognizes the progress his team has made despite this. “There has been both team and individual growth,” says Coach Luckette; “the coaching staff is happy with the transition we are making.” But both Jasinski and fellow senior captain Jackie Halpin agree that the fact that the fields were not in use for so long affected their play. “I think the late start delayed us,” said Halpin; “We couldn’t get on the fields.” “More time on the field will help us,” said Jasinski; “I think with time we’ll have a better chance to win sectionals.” Coach Luckette believes that if the team continues to develop that they should be in definite contention for a league title. He also understand that it will be difficult road to sectionals with teams like CBA, Auburn and Fulton in the mix of competition. “We will have to bring our best game if we expect to make a good run.”
Boys Golf Sectionals
When the Varsity Boys Golf team finished off their solid regular season, the team ended up qualifying three players: seniors Mike Engstrom, Jeff Edwards, and Joe Shapiro. “(Qualifying three players) was really good for our team,” said Engstrom; “I’d say the (regular) season was a success.” But after a long winter break, the Sectional Tournament on May 23, is drawing nearer for the three. Both Shapiro and Edwards agreed that preparations for the tournament could have been better. “Its tough. I’ve had other obligations that I thought were a little more important than golf (in the off season),” said Edwards. Although the two think that it will be difficult to advance passed sectionals, especially with such good competition, they agree that their teammate Engstrom has the best chance. Engstrom believes that after playing a lot of golf and spending time in the range he has a chance to win it too.