The weeks preceding graduation at The Storm King School are filled with events and activities designed to conclude the school year on a positive note. One such event was the presentation of Storm King’s 2018-2019 All School Athletic Awards. On Thursday, May 23, the School’s coaches acknowledged SKS’ talented student-athletes from the fall, winter, and spring seasons as they presented the Most Outstanding Player (MOP) and Coaches Awards in the Walter Reade Jr. Theatre. The awards ceremony followed a festive banquet dinner in Henderson Dining Hall in celebration of a fantastic year for Storm King Athletics and the conclusion of a great spring sports season.
In his opening words, SKS Athletic Director Joseph Graziosi reviewed the impressive numbers earned by Storm King student-athletes this year. “Our teams won a total of 9 championship titles. This is a record; something that has never been accomplished before. Winning takes talent, but to repeat as a champion takes character and integrity. Seven out of these 9 championships are repeats. Some teams have been repeating champions 2, 3, 4, as many as 6 times,” explained Coach Graziosi to the audience, as he continued to break down the numbers.
“In the fall semester alone, we had 98 students on championship teams. Our fall teams totaled 50 wins and only two losses. Overall, the Cougars enjoyed 126 wins this year–that’s 75% of their conference games and 66% overall. Tonight, we’re here to celebrate our great athletes, who are also great people. It’s been a great year for Storm King Athletics,” he continued.
As they wrapped up their seasons, SKS’ spring coaches agreed. Girls Varsity Lacrosse Coach Jeanette McMahon, who was the first spring coach to hand out awards, reported a season record of 3 wins and 4 losses. “With all the rain this spring, we had tough field conditions and several cancellations, but the girls persevered. They fought hard through our final two games, losing to St. Luke’s 5-14, but ending the year strong with a decisive win against The Masters School 15 -8. I am sad to see our seniors Shania Roerich, Tiana Vazquez, Jessica Zheng, and Savannah Buon go. I am also forward to coaching our returning girls next year. The team is excited to have Sophia Grausso. ’20 back again as the goalie. This year, she made 72 saves! Also returning are Sally Zhang ‘20, Kaitlin Bou ‘23, and Romee Choi ‘21 on offense; Sam McCullough ‘20, Carly Neville ‘22, and Sofia Bove ‘22 on midfield; and Tina Jarearnphan‘20, Helen Shen ‘20, and Maddy Mendlewski ‘22 on defense,” explained Coach McMahon.
Girls Lacrosse MOP Award: Samantha McCullough ‘20
Girls Lacrosse Coaches Award: Sophia Grausso ‘20
Next, Coach Graziosi returned to the podium to recognize the efforts of the boys varsity lacrosse team. “The Storm King boys lacrosse team ended their season with a 12-8 loss at Woodhall School in an epic battle to the finish and a 2-7 overall record. All season these young men gave courageous efforts as many were learning a new sport. Their heart, valor, and determination have been second to none in my time at Storm King. I am very proud to have been associated with these boys during the season and look forward to building on the foundation for greatness that they have laid. I also want to thank Coaches Hughes and Bennett for their efforts this season. With more than 15 returning players, Storm King is on the cusp of dominating the HVAL for several years to come,” explained Coach Graziosi.
Boys Lacrosse MOP: Dias Aidossov ‘21
Boys Lacrosse Coaches Award: Michael McCullough’22
Coaches Vondras and Gillett were next to take the microphone to talk about Boys Varsity Baseball. The team, led by a core, close-knit group of seniors, made tremendous improvements by finishing the 2019 season with a league record of 4-3 and 4-5 overall. “Senior captain Aidan Sweeney led the team in almost all offensive categories compiling a .481 batting average and hitting three home runs,” explained Coach Gillett. “Aidan also took on a bulk of the pitching and catching duties. Senior Alonso Gonzalez finished third on the team with a .308 batting average and led the team in runs scored with 10. Senior Lorenzo Pretto earned two victories on the mound and played a steady outfield. Other senior contributors were Sebastian Garrido and Jason Lin. SKS will count on returning underclassmen Conall Sweeney ‘20, Chris Chang ‘20, Jason Shrem ‘21, Pep Viveros ‘21, Daniel Braveman ‘22, and Michael Hong ‘22 to build on this year’s successes in the 2020 campaign,” he continued.
Baseball MOP: Lorenzo Pretto ‘19
Baseball Coaches Award: Aiden Sweeney ‘19
Girls Tennis Coach Nancy Greenhill was pleased to hand out the awards to the girls varsity tennis team, who ended their season with a 9-2 record, captured their fourth consecutive league championship undefeated, and qualified for the New England championship as the third highest seed this year. “We have had the pleasure to face such a wide range of competitive schools throughout our competition season this year. What strikes me the most about the Storm King girls varsity tennis team is their level of sportsmanship on and off the tennis courts. This was an amazing team where I was able to play 14 different players in at least one match while bringing home the HVAL championship for the 4th year in a row,” explained Coach Greenhill.
Girls Tennis MOP: Maria Fedosenkova ’19
Girls Tennis Coaches Award: Peiyu Margo Yang ‘19
The boys tennis team, who finished with an 11-2 overall record this year, succeeded in capturing the HVAL league championship for their 6th consecutive year. Coaches thanked the efforts of all their team members, some since their 8th grade and freshman years, who have contributed to this team’s ongoing success. The coaches were also proud to send team captain Guillermo Ramoz-Sanches ‘19 to the New England Class A Tennis Championship Invitational this season, where he had victories over Groton, Watkinson, and Loomis-Chaffee before losing in a Double Super Tiebreaker to Groton in the finals of the Consolation Bracket.
Boys Tennis MOP: Guillermo Ramos-Sanchez ’19
Boys Tennis Coaches Award: Yihong Joseph He ‘19
According to Coach Kolach, the SKS Ultimate Frisbee team also had a great year finishing with a 3-7 overall record. “At the start of the season, we practiced every day on the lower field and started off our season with true grit and determination in our opening game against PDS, the undefeated champions from last year. We battled bravely in the intense wind conditions on their home field but didn’t come out victorious. Our team was determined. We finally emerged with a win against Darrow. We took the home field advantage in a muddy, neck-to-neck game and we finally got our first win of the season,” explained Coach Kolach. “After that, the team stayed between 4th and 5th in the league until the last few matches. However, final exams and the long journey to Darrow took a toll on the players and we finished our season with a loss. Overall, we had fun and the team’s determination to find new Frisbee-throwing techniques made our season great. We devised a plan of attack at every game and always had a drive to succeed,” she continued.
Ultimate Frisbee MOP: David Lu ‘19
Ultimate Frisbee Coaches Award: Jordan Golding ‘20
Assistant Coach Lindsey Plummer announced the awards for SKS’ varsity mountain biking squad. The mountain bikers enjoyed their first year at SKS as a competitive varsity sport in competition with other schools from central New York to Long Island in the National Interscholastic Cycling Association (NICA). Storm King’s small but enthusiastic team had the chance to compete twice this season and finished both competitions with a lot to be proud of, despite frequent rain. Coaches David Mendlewski and Ms. Plummer focused on skill and stamina-building during the team’s practices in Black Rock and Stewart State Forests and commended the efforts and progress of their team members.
Mountain Biking MOP: A. River Holasek ‘20
Mountain Biking Coaches Award: Joseph Sullivan ‘23
Coach Megan Liggett handed out the awards for girls softball, a team which resumed competition from two years ago following a hiatus last year. “This year was my first year as a full-time coach at Storm King. Some of the team members were more experienced players returning from two years ago and some were new, never having played softball before. During our season, we practiced hard and had lots of ups and down, but, in the end, we became a really good team. Even with all of our rain cancelations and our final record of 0-3, I’m proud of what the team accomplished this year,” explained Coach Liggett.
Softball MOP: Ashley Cabrera ‘19
Softball Coaches Award: Liwei Wang ‘20
The Athletic Awards for the fall and winter seasons were given as follows:
Boys Varsity Soccer MOP: Jordan Golding ‘20
Boys Varsity Soccer Coaches Award: Javier Irurita ‘22
Boys JV Soccer MOP: Andres Gomez ‘23
Boys JV Soccer Coaches Award: Kongcheng Ben Liu ‘22
Girls Soccer MOP: Shania Roehrich ‘19
Girls Soccer Coaches Award: Tiana Vazquez ‘19
Boys Cross County MOP: Kolby Braxton ‘19
Boys Cross Country Coaches Award: Lorenzo Pretto ‘19
Girls Cross Country MOP: Sophia Bove ‘22
Girls Cross Country Coaches Award: Caroline Hecht ‘19
Girls Varsity Volleyball MOP: Rory Tobin ‘20
Girls Varsity Volleyball Coaches Award: Morgan Papera ‘20
Girls JV Volleyball MOP: Jiaying Amy Wang ‘21
Girls JV Volleyball Coaches Award: Emily Elizabeth Kent ‘21
Boys Varsity Basketball MOP: Kolby Braxton ‘19
Boys Varsity Basketball Coaches Award: Jayden Figueroa ‘19
Boys JV Basketball MOP: Chi Yuan Wilson Shih ‘20
Boys JV Basketball Coaches Award: Junwei Max Xu ‘22
Girls Varsity Basketball MOP: Shania Roerich ‘19
Girls Varsity Basketball Coaches Award: Catherine Zheng ‘19
Girls JV Basketball MOP: Maria Jose Alcantara ‘20
Girls JV Basketball Coaches Award: Maria Nowosielska ‘20
Fencing MOP: Kongcheng Ben Liu ‘22
Fencing Coaches Award: Dominique Gooden ‘21
Wrestling MOP: Wonui Kim ‘21
Wrestling Coaches Award: Joseph Louis ‘22
To conclude the 2018-2019 Athletic Awards presentation, Athletic Director Graziosi handed out this year’s Pentagonal Awards to seniors in the Class of 2019. The Pentagonal Award was in instituted in 1953 by Mr. Herb Sauer for senior student-athletes who have at least five varsity letter seasons in their careers at Storm King. This year, SKS awarded engraved Pentagonal keychains to 23 members of the Class of 2019. Congratulations to our graduating seniors and all of the student-athletes who received awards.