2003-05-02 / Sports

High School Roundup: Spring Finally Arrives

Frowns and Smiles
By Elio Velez
High School Roundup: Spring Finally Arrives By Elio Velez Frowns and Smiles

Far Rockaway Seahorses’ Marquis Whitmore.Far Rockaway Seahorses’ Marquis Whitmore.

When Far Rockaway played East New York-Transit Tech in a makeup baseball game last week, Seahorses head coach Ken Hernandez thought the slate was clean. A makeup game should have entitled that both teams start at 0-0. But when the game started, umpire told Hernandez that it would be picked up at 6-0 in the first.

To say that Hernandez was surprised was an understatement. The team looked down and even with a few players trying to instill confidence in their teammates, the outcome was apparent. Transit Tech defeated Far Rockaway and Hernandez filed a formal protest to replay the game.

Even with support from Transit Tech head coach Onix Duran, Hernandez found out his protest was denied. "The PSAL told me that they make their own decisions when it comes to makeup games", said Hernandez. "Each league makes their own rules when it comes to makeup games."

Though Hernandez was disappointed with the outcome, he is still looking forward to coaching a young team that has been going through ups and downs. One member of this team, Marquis Whitmore is achieving great success outside of baseball.

The Beach Channel Dolphins are 7-0 on the seasonThe Beach Channel Dolphins are 7-0 on the season

A senior, Whitmore has wrestled at the 275-pound super heavyweight class and has won many matches over the years. Wrestling is not a huge sport at the PSAL with only 22 schools participating in the sport. There has been a devoted effort as of late to heighten the awareness of the program.

"The PSAL is trying to bridge the gap and be more competitive like as the schools upstate, the Catholic schools and Long Island", says Hernandez, who is also the wrestling coach. Even with the wrestling season over, Whitmore has placed second in both categories of the Long Island Freestyle and Greco Roman wrestling champions. With his accomplishments, Whitmore will compete in the Empire State Games in Buffalo. "I am very proud of the hard work he has done", Hernandez said.

Girls Dominate Again

The mercy rule in high school baseball is used when a team wins a ballgame after leading by 10 or more runs at the end of the 5th inning. The Beach Channel Dolphins knows this rule well. At 7-0 in the Queens division, five of those wins have been ended in the 5th inning.

The only thing head coach Robert Attonito has to worry about is trying to keep his team from making the mistakes that cost them a possible championship after a 15-0 record last season.

"We made mistakes that cost us. We didn’t tag up when we should have and we committed errors", said Attonito of last year’s 6-5 loss to Roosevelt in the third round. This year’s version returns many players with the only notable loss being star pitcher Lucia Sirica.

Sophomore Jodi Vitale will take over the starting pitching role. "Lucia was a kind of a role model with my pitching. I would like to help anyway I can", says Vitale. "This team is just as good as last year’s team", says 1B Katreem Palmer.

Attonito stresses to his team after an 25-3 win over August Martin to stay loose and keep on making the right plays to win. By continuing to stress the fundamentals but plaiying for fun, Attonito is confident his team will go far in the playoffs.

Stella Maris Growing Pains

First year softball head coach Alyson Walsh team is 3-3 overall. "I have a young team trying to learn the fundamentals. I have 6 juniors and freshman and sophomores on my team.

When the team is hitting on all cylinders, a 17-0 win over St. Agnes will occur. Though they lost in the same week to Mary Louis, 13-1 and Molloy 1-0, Walsh sees the improvements every day that this may scare other catholic schools in the playoffs. "This team is trying in every game. If we can win a game this week (they play three games which include Christ the King), we can make the playoffs", says Walsh.


Beach Channel’s win over August Martin led the men’s volleyball Dolphins to claim sole possession of first place in the Queens division. Hillcrest, who defeated Springfield Gardens in a doubleheader at BC and in second place, watched and cheered against the Dolphins in the stands. After a slow start, the Dolphins won in three sets to become 8-1.

Far Rockaway girls’ tennis will play at Beach Channel on Friday, May 2. Both teams have winning records and trying to reach the playoffs. Beach Channel basketball coach Jim Malone was named Daily News’ high school PSAL coach of the year. Beach Channel’s Rhashon Clark and Far Rockaway’s Richard Forbes placed on first or second all-city or all-queens teams in many publications.

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