The fifth annual Connetquot Summer Field Hockey Camp came to a conclusion on Aug. 9, as more than 40 students, counselors and coaches came together to improve their skills in the popular sport.
Students in grades three through nine attended the morning sessions as coach Jen Piscitelli, along with her varsity players and counselors, engaged the student-athletes in a variety of basic and advanced skills and strategies they can expect to use this season. Campers were provided with several water breaks during each session, and ended the day with a series of fun games alongside the varsity counselors.
A total of 185 campers, coaches, trainers and counselors recently took part in the seventh annual Soccer Camp held at Connetquot High School during the week of July 30.
Divided into two age-appropriate groups, the upperclassmen attended the morning program while the younger students in grades first through sixth attended a three-hour evening session. Both current and former varsity soccer players took part in the program, assisting the younger campers by being coaches and mentors.
After the campers were divided into groups, they were sent to activity stations where they worked on individual skill improvement and team play. In addition to skill-improving activities, the campers and coaches played a variety of games designed to keep the players sharp and motivated. Coaches Nick Sturtz and Ryan Cavanagh were very pleased with both the competition and increased number of certified trainers that took part in this summer’s soccer program.
About 140 district campers, coaches and counselors took part in the 2018 All-Sports Camp experience, held from July 9-Aug. 3 at both Bosti and Slocum elementary schools.
At Bosti, physical education teachers Michael Konsevich and Michael Oldis put together a fun-filled program that taught the students basic skills in basketball, volleyball and soccer. Additionally, they played challenging games, attended newly released movies and visited local bowling alleys. District staff members Scott Ferguson and Amanda Ferguson were directors of the All-Sports Camp held at Slocum, where the students participated in the same activities.
Exercises and drills were designed to teach students both basic and advanced skills to further their playing ambitions. These young T-Birds worked hard, made some new friends and are excited to put their newfound skills and confidence into practice this season.
Students in grades first through eighth recently took part in the 2018 boys lacrosse summer camp on the fields of Connetquot High School with assistance from high school coach Brett Jeffares and his staff.
The camp, which ran during the week of July 23, divided students into four age-appropriate working groups where they split their time between working on game specific skills and fun-filled drills.
Additionally, multiple members of the Connetquot varsity lacrosse program served as counselors during the week. Amongst the volunteers was recent graduate George Wichelns, who accepted an athletic scholarship to attend the University of Maryland this upcoming fall. George holds the Connetquot High School all-time lacrosse records for goals scored (181), assists (138) and points scored (319).
Between the championship coaches, players and enthusiastic future T-Bird lacrosse stars, the 2018 boys lacrosse summer camp was an outstanding success.
District students in grades six through nine recently took part in a series of free football clinics, “Monday Night Football,” during the summer in an effort to improve basic skills, conditioning and work on team-building drills.
Varsity football coach Mike Hansen and varsity defensive coordinator Mike Konsevitch developed the program and were assisted by Connetquot High School varsity football players, who worked with the campers on skills and conditioning exercises.
The coaching staff was pleased with the turnout and enthusiasm of these future T-Birds. Each clinic session ended with competitive and fun games that the young students enjoyed. Working with Connetquot’s varsity coaching staff and players inspired the campers to improve their efforts as they look forward to the beginning of school and the 2018 football season.
Students in grades 5 through 12 recently attended the 2018 Lady Thunderbirds Volleyball Camp, where the young students collaborated with the older experienced athletes on basic skills and advanced team-related drills. The camp was directed by coach Justin Hertz, district volleyball staff members Karen Edwards, Ashley Marchese and Brianne Hertz, along with the support of current and former T-Bird volleyball players.
“This was our largest enrollment so far and the campers were both supportive and enthusiastic,” said coach Hertz. “The varsity girls joined the coaching staff and did a great job of teaching and serving as strong female role models for the campers. The best part for me is that all of the coaches had attended the camp as young campers as they were just starting out in volleyball. Now, they get the chance to give back to the sport that helped mold them.”
The young students worked hard, made some new friends and look forward to putting their new found skills, and confidence, into practice this season. The Connetquot High School varsity volleyball team finished the regular season undefeated (18-0) and went on to win the league, Suffolk County and Long Island and New York State Championship Tournaments.
Future Connetquot High School athletes are brushing up on their skills during the 2018 Thunder Tennis Academy, a summer camp open to grades K-12 run by coach Ryan Cavanagh.
More than 130 campers, plus coaches and instructors, are taking part in the Academy, which runs from July 5 to Aug. 16. In addition to teaching skills, the program is helping to raise money for financial awards given to graduating seniors that have been a part of the Connetquot High School varsity tennis program.
The Jim Crowley Sr. Memorial Scholarship is named in honor of the longtime teacher and Connetquot High School tennis coach. To date, more than $5,000 has been awarded to qualifying students, according to coach Cavanagh.
Connetquot High School Class of 2018 graduate Ciaran McGinnis has been selected to take part in the Junior European Baseball Championship Tournament being held in Grosseto, Italy, from July 9-15 based on his remarkable baseball talents.
Ciaran, who holds dual-citizenship due to his father being born in Ireland, was asked to join the Irish national team following an outstanding career playing for the Connetquot High School varsity baseball team. Ciaran averaged .400 at the plate this season and had a 3-3 record pitching for the team as well. He split his time on the field between playing third base and pitching.
The Irish national team will play four games to qualify for the championship round of the European tournament.
While attending, the Irish national team is expected to play a schedule which will include games against Spain, Lithuania, Germany and Italy. The week’s results will determine the playoff schedule which may also include teams representing Ukraine, France, Netherlands, Great Britain and the Czech Republic.
Ciaran was a Suffolk County All-League selection for the Connetquot High School varsity baseball team that finished this past season in the semifinals of the Suffolk County Championship Tournament. He will be playing baseball at Farmingdale State College this fall. The district congratulates Ciaran on this accomplishment.
The district once again hosted the nationally recognized “Camp Invention” program from June 25-28 at Bosti Elementary School, as more than 100 students in grades one through six took part in a program of exploration, inspiration and creativity.
Programs such as the “Optibot,” “Robotic Pet Vet,” “Mod My Mini Mansion” and “Stick To It” challenged the campers to think outside the box to solve problems and use the internet to reveal how these devices are connected and controlled.
On June 28, parents and siblings were invited by program director Lisa Manzo to marvel at the efforts the students put into the innovative projects they had been working on during the week.
Camp Invention is the only nationally recognized, nonprofit elementary enrichment program backed by the National Inventors Hall of Fame. During the past 40 years, and in partnership with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, this program has encouraged nearly two million children, teachers, parents, college students and independent inventors across the country to explore science, technology and their own innate creativity, inventiveness and entrepreneurial spirit.
The original program was established in 1990 and has since spread to 49 states. The Camp Invention program enhances a child’s ability to learn through teamwork and subject-immersion while cultivating a new appreciation for discovery through fun-filled activities.
Dozens of district students spanning grades five through twelve recently attended the annual Connetquot Coaches Association Basketball Camp, which featured skills tests, championship play and awards presentations at the end of the week-long experience.
Coach Tim Trava and his enthusiastic staff members engaged the young students in a variety of dribbling, shooting, rebounding and defensive drills. The exercises were designed to provide students with the opportunity to learn both basic and advanced skills of the popular sport, enhance their teamwork and develop an overall love of the game.
As the camp came to an end, Coach Trava congratulated the campers on their effort and enthusiasm, encouraged them to consider working on their skills, and wished them a fun and safe summer vacation.
As an end-of-year literacy celebration, students from Duffield Elementary School enrolled in Katie Clare’s, John Llanes’ and Karen Pitka’s fourth-grade classes recently invited special guests to attend their “Poetry Alive” celebration.
The creative students took the stage and recited both original works and pieces written by poets such as Kenn Nesbitt, Shel Silverstein and Jack Prelutsky. Their original works explored the genres of “I Am” and “Color” poetry, along with entirely original titles and subject matter such as “Where Does Poetry Hide?”, “I Need to Find A Place” and “My Awesome Dogs.”
Students at Ronkonkoma Middle School recently took part in the school’s second annual “Ramp Shot” fundraiser in an effort to raise money to support finding a cure for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, more commonly known as ALS or Lou Gehrig’s disease.
After contributing a $15 donation, students and their teammates were able to engage in fun and friendly competition in the school’s gymnasium for a few hours. Dozens of students put their skills to the test as they played the popular backyard game, which was created by Josh Bonventre and Kevin Texeira, both of Long Island. As a result of the fundraiser, the students raised $1,300 to support the cause.
Additionally, the Ronkonkoma Middle School National Junior Honor Society hosted a highly successful car wash the week prior which raised $500 toward funding and awareness for ALS.
Students, staff, parents and local first responders recently gathered outside Slocum Elementary School to celebrate Flag Day on June 14. Those in attendance dressed in red, white and blue outfits, recited the Pledge of Allegiance, and sang patriotic songs around the school’s flag pole, including performances by the school band.
After the flag-raising ceremony, the guests visited the classrooms to talk to students about their dedication to the community they serve. Physical education teacher John Zambriski helped organize the event in the hope that it would provide students with the opportunity to recognize the honorable service these professionals provide and to show their appreciation for that dedication.
A special thanks goes out to the first responders who took the time to join with Slocum students on Flag Day — Anthony Baiocco, Robert Candela, Anthony Daniels, Anthony Fiore, Martin Gregg, Chris Germano, Jim Harrington, Jason McKevitt, Donna Monahan, Steven Slarcella and Robert A. Sowinski.
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