Marc Maturo’s official sports column
Spartans run to success, set conference crown as goal
The Spartans of St. Thomas Aquinas College in Sparkill, whose next stop is the Armory in upper Manhattan on January 18 for the NYU Saturday Night Shootout, are keeping their eyes on the ultimate prize this track and field season.
“We’re here to win the (East Coast) Conference, that’s our goal,” fourth-year coach Lorne Marcus of Pomona flatly states.
“We’re much deeper this year than ever before and everyone is working hard,” Marcus added.
The Spartans, anchored by senior veteran George Erazo of North Babylon, the returning ECC runner of the year, are also infused with talented freshmen. Among the newcomers are Tiana Kirkland of New City and Winslow Dorsainvil of Monsey.
Kirkland, a Clarkstown South HS alumna, competes in the 60-meter dash, the 200 and 4×4 relay.
“She’s doing all right, works hard, and has room to improve a lot,” Marcus notes.
Dorsainvil is an alum of Spring Valley HS, and holds the second-fastest time in the state in the 55 with a 6.35 clocking.
“He has unlimited potential,” Coach Marcus said of the four-time scholastic champion who is a sports management major. “He’s a hard worker for us and doing all he has to do, in the classroom and on the track.”
Another freshman with potential is Travis Abelard of Spring Valley, a graduate of Ramapo HS. Travis is the younger brother of former STAC standout Mike Abelard.
Coach Marcus said Travis “is a different type of runner than Mike, but is a hard worker, too.”
Other standouts for the Spartans include Garvenchy Nicolas of Brooklyn, Gabby Sloezen of Westwood, N.J., Matt Buell of Staten Island, Tristan Holmgren of Valhalla, Gina Funaro of Queens, Breanna Lyn of North Babylon, and Keeley Bateman of Pearl River.
Following the NYU Shootout, the Spartans will head to Boston, Mass., on January 24-25 to compete in the Terrier Classic hosted by Boston University.
MAGER MAGNIFICENT: Junior guard Zach Mager of New City continues to wield a hot hand on the men’s basketball team at Oneonta State, as he poured in 31 points for the second time this season to spark a 80-75 victory at New Paltz. Mager has scored at least 20 points in nine of 11 games for the Red Dragons, who vaulted over the .500 mark at 6-5 and now look forward to a stretch of five straight home games. The home stand opens on January 17 against Potsdame at 8 p.m., and continues on January 18 against Plattsburgh State at 4 p.m., followed by Cortland on January 21 at 8 p.m. Mager, an alum of Clarkstown South HS, leads the team with 23.5 points per game, and ranks third in steals with 12.
ALL IN THE FAMILY: Distance runner Kyle Collins of Suffern, a sophomore on the track and field team at Fredonia State, comes from a long line of competitors. Kyle’s dad Michael Collins ran track at Fredonia State and his mother Helene played basketball at the University of Rhode Island. Other family members who competed at the collegiate level were uncle Neal Roher, tennis at Binghamton; uncle Greg Rogers, wrestling at Binghamton; and cousins Steve Collins, baseball at Western Kentucky and Allison Rogers, swimming at Yale. The Blue Devils visit the Rochester Institute of Technology on January 18, and compete in the Terrier Classis at Boston University on January 24.
QUICK HITTERS: Providence College freshman swimmer Colleen Hartigan, a former team captain at Suffern HS, posted a qualifying time for the Big East Championships in the 200-yard backstroke at the Northeast Catholic Invitational at Boston College’s Flynn Complex Aquatics Center in Chestnut Hill, Mass. Hartigan also competes in freestyle and individual medley for the Friars, who visit Villanova (Pa.) University on January 18 at noon. … Shelby Greany of Suffern, a redshirt senior , and junior Caile Kohlbrenner of Sparkill are members of the track and field team at Providence College, which competes at the URI Sorlien Invitational in Kingston, R.I., on January 18. The meet is set to start at 11 a.m. … Sophomore Chris Leary and freshman Andrew Garcia, both of Suffern, combined with Greg MacDonald of Monore and Jamie Miller of Eden to finish eighth in the 400-yard freestyle relay as the Cortland men’s swimming and diving team placed third at the RPI Kumpf Invitational in Troy. The Red Dragons host New Paltz at 1 p.m. on January 17 and welcome Oswego on January 22 at 4 p.m. … Paul Fields of New City dropped a tough 3-1 decision at 125 pounds but the nationally eighth-ranked Cortland wrestling team finished second at the 20-team Budd Whitehill Duals in Williamsport, Pa. The Red Dragons compete at the Empire Collegiate Wrestling Conference (ECWC) championships on January 18, at Lycoming College in Williamsport. … Sophomore Yonghoon Jun of Nanuet is competing in butterfly on the men’s swimming team at SUNY Geneseo, which travels to Westminster College in New Wilmington, Pa., on January 18 and hosts Oswego on January 25. Also competing for the Knights are Bryan Schaub of Blauvelt, butterfly and freestyle, and Caroline Russo, also of Blauvelt, in breaststroke. … Senior guard Kelly Mulligan of Pearl River had eight points and four rebounds as the SUNY Oneonta women’s basketball team posted a 60-42 victory at New Paltz in a SUNYAC contest. The Red Dragons, who lifted their overall record to 9-2, host Potsdam on January 17 at 2 p.m., and stay at home on January 21 to meet Cortland at 6 p.m. … Guard Joe Clinton of Pearl River had nine points as the Dominican College men’s basketball team stayed atop the Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference (CACC) North Division standings with a 74-66 victory over host Caldwell (N.J.) College. The Chargers, who improved to 10-3 overall and 6-0 in conference play, visit Felician (N.J.) College on January 18 at 7 p.m., and then return home for a rematch with Caldwell on January 22 at 7:30 p.m. at the Hennessy Center in Orangeburg. … Freshman guard Chaz Watler of Brooklyn was named East Coast Conference rookie of the week after sparking the St. Thomas Aquinas College men’s basketball team to a 78-65 victory against Queens. Watler scored 20 points, with four assists, two rebounds and one steal in the Spartans’ only game of the week. STAC hosts LIU-Post on January 18 at 3 p.m. at Aquinas Hall in Sparkill. The respective women’s teams meet at 1 p.m.
THIS & THAT: The United States Golf Association (USGA), based in Far Hills, N.J., is seeking a social media specialist to join the association’s communications department. For information and to apply access: http://www.usga.org/jobs/careers/Social-Media.