Category Archives: Fall Sports

JV Water Polo Wins MIAA Championship

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The thrill of victory for the JV Water Polo team!

The Junior Varsity Water Polo season at Mount Saint Joseph started off strong with a scrimmage tournament at McDonogh, with the team taking notching victories over both McDonogh and Landon. Two weeks later, the Gaels played their first league game against McDonogh beating them 16 to 6. After the strong start to the season the Gaels went on to not only win every game they played but also doubled the opposing teams score each time. The boys continued their streak all the way until their second meeting with the Gilman School. In the first half, the boys struggled to hold off Gilman’s superior outside shooting and let Gilman hold a dramatic lead that the Gaels could not recover from in the second half.

After their one, and only defeat by Gilman, the boys rallied themselves for the MIAA Championship. This game is where the Gaels would get the chance to exact their revenge on Gilman for their earlier defeat. At the end of the first quarter, it did not look good for Saint Joe as the Greyhounds put a 2 to 1 lead on them. By the end of the half, MSJ pulled back ahead and carried that lead all the way to the final buzzer with the final score, MSJ – 8 to Gilman – 6. Freshman Edward DeMaria was the high point for the game with three goals followed by Alexander Chairs with two. In addition, freshman Wesley Reising and sophomores Zane Miklasz and Patrick Bauer scored goals. The defensive side was led by Cole Hite in goal and Edward DeMaria defending set. After the game, captains Cole Hite and Alexander Chairs were presented with a plaque declaring Mount Saint Joseph as the 2018 MIAA Champions!

Congratulations to the 2018 JV Water Polo team for their successful season. Check out photos from the Championship Match, photos courtesy of Ms. Ellen Quinn.

 

Cross Country Team Is Young But Gaining Experience

Over the past few years, the Varsity Cross Country team was nothing short of dominant with some of the top runners in the state. However, with the loss of some dominant seniors, the varsity cross country team has a new face and identity. For some, the transition from an older experienced team could be a problem, but for this team, there is hope for the season. The team won back to back MIAA cross country championships in 2015-2016 season and the 2016-2017 season, anchored by Hunter Petrick, Andrew Brinker, Ryan Hockstra, Chris Flynn, Gabe Antone, David Trider. This year’s team now consists of Chris Flynn, Gabe Antone, David Trider, Nick DeLauro, Reza Farjami, Michael Vartain and Dan Alli.

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Dan Alli (on left), Andrew Brinker (center), Coach Whitt (back right), Kevin Zaleski (front right) Photo Taken By: Nick DeLauro

This year’s cross country team is expecting to have a rebuilding year with new faces and a different environment with some new coaches as well. The top three runners (Chris Flynn, Gabe Antone, and David Trider) have been consistent with placing and times while the back four (Nick DeLauro, Reza Farjami, Dan Alli, and Michael Vartain) are improving and working on pacing together and staying as a pack. According to Coach Jack Peach, so far they have been looking strong as a team and staying together. One area that needs to improve is the time gap between the number three runner and the number four runner. Sitting at close to a minute, the time gap needs to be shortened if the team wants to have a legitimate shot at the championship.

When speaking to Coach Jack Peach about what his biggest goal for this season was, he replied, “my biggest goal is to be a top team and be able to compete for champs.” He said, “our back four runners need to work on getting stronger and get more miles in. Also, they don’t have as much experience in these type of races.”

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As a senior and team captain, Chris Flynn (right) leads the team through his work and dedication to the team. Photo Credit: Nick DeLauro

For a team building in experience , this year will be interesting to see how the improvements work and to see how the new guys do on the big stage. We don’t know what will happen, but the underclassmen will definitely gain from the competitions. Either way, it should be an interesting season for the Varsity Gaels Cross Country team.

Nick DeLauro is a junior and a member of the Multimedia Journalism Class.

Coach Sam Bianco Earns Win 100 During Varsity Volleyball Season

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St. Joe celebrates their semi-final win over Loyola.

Wow. Just one of many words that could be used to describe 2017 Varsity Volleyball season. It was filled with exciting matches, countless memories for the players and coaches, and a sensational playoff run. The Volleygaels recorded a regular season record of 11-5, including 3 straight wins to start off the season. The season was one to remember, with multiple milestones being reached and incredible matches thanks to the amazing support of the student section.  

Sam Bianco, the team’s head coach, gained the 100th win of his career in a 3-0 sweep of Archbishop Curley during the season. It was a memorable moment that not many coaches can experience. “This is my 12th year as the varsity head coach, so I have been around awhile,” said Coach Bianco. Coach Bianco also talked about the success of the program and the great players he has coached over the years who have enabled him to earn so many wins. Coaching and teaching in the classroom are so closely related for Coach Bianco, and he says that learning on the field or during a sport is just as important as what happens in the classroom. Coach Bianco stated that “high school sports gives us the opportunity to accomplish things as part of a team. Working and being part of a team in necessary because after high school, you will have to do that anyway.”

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Coach Sam Bianco ’01 celebrated his 100th win with a victor over Curley.

Coach Bianco knew that the 100th win was possible during the season, but he didn’t think about it differently than any other game during the season. For Coach Bianco, he realized that winning and playing sports is fleeting and won’t last forever, so for him it is important that his players learn lessons that they can carry beyond high school. Coach Bianco finished up by saying, “Make everything in your life mean something! The lessons that we take with us from high school sports are so valuable.”

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The Volleygaels, along with St. Joe supporters, celebrate a point during the semi-final match.

The team also witnessed outside hitter Will Targonski break the all-time record for career kills with 381! Memorable moments also include multiple comebacks, specifically senior night. The Volleygaels were playing Gilman and found themselves down 2-1 with the game on the line in the 4th set. They pulled away and ended up winning that set, sending the match to a 5th winner take all set. It was back and forth the whole set and MSJ survived several match points for Gilman. After barely staying alive, the Gaels pulled away and won 20-18, taking the match. Luke Williams had the game of his life: he was solid in the back row all night and had an incredible 5th set, which included a highlight play in which he had multiple game saving digs leading the team to victory.

The team entered the playoffs with a home match against St. Pauls where they had an all-around great effort from all the players and ended up sweeping the Crusaders 3-0. The 4th seeded Gaels advanced to the semifinals and took on the top seeded Loyola Dons in what was arguably the best match of the season. The team started especially slow and found themselves in a 2-0 hole and on the verge of the the season being over if they lost the next set. It was a close 3rd set the whole way, as the two teams were trading points back and forth. The Gaels ended up winning 25-23 off a missed serve from the Dons. This win electrified the team and they easily handled Loyola in the 4th set, which led to a huge 5th that would decide the match. MSJ was up early, but the Dons came storming back and tied it. The team saw themselves up 14-13 with a chance to win the game on the next point. Middle hitter Patrick Connolly went up and spiked it straight down on the Dons’ side, and the Volleygaels were going to the championship for the first time since 2006.

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St. Joe Volleyball came up just short, losing to Gilman in the finals.

In the championship Mount Saint Joe squared off with Gilman yet again for a chance to win it all. The Gaels found themselves down 2-0 yet again and pulled away to win an exciting 3rd set keeping the season alive. The energy was through the roof as the student section filled up a whole section of the stands. In the 4th set, the Gaels fell apart early and couldn’t recover as Gilman ended up taking the set 25-15, resulting in a championship win for them. The team had an incredible run and solidified themselves as one of the best volleyball teams in recent memory. It was a great season, and the program can’t wait to try to redeem themselves next year.

Junior Ethan Hall also contributed to this article by interviewing Head Coach Sam Bianco.

From MSJ Student to Coach: Kyle Reagan ’00

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Mr. Kyle Reagan works with one of his DePaul students.

The 2017-2018 school year here at Mount Saint Joseph is welcoming a large number of new teachers and faculty members. One specifically is Mr. Kyle Reagan, or in the track team’s case, Coach Reagan. Coach Reagan is working in the DePaul Center, but he is also coaching cross country. Prior to his return to Saint Joe, he coached at Maryvale Preparatory School while he was a Phys Ed teacher at a local middle school. He was an assistant coach for cross country as well as a coach for track and field. In track, he coached mainly sprinters but also long, triple, and high jumpers. While he spent his time at Maryvale, he was a part of coaching 2 cross country championship games, two indoor track championships, and one outdoor championship. He also coached 6 different high jumpers who were conference champions over 8 years.

Coach Kyle Reagan graduated from the Mount in 2000 and claims it to be “the greatest graduating class” from Mount Saint Joseph. From his freshman to senior year, he ran cross country as well as indoor and outdoor track, totaling up to twelve total seasons of running. In fact, the Mount’s current cross country coach, Coach Peach was his track coach senior year of high school. In track he ran the 800-meter race up to the 2 mile. When he was in high school, his favorite subjects were Chemistry and Physics.

After Coach Reagan’s departure from the Mount in 2000, he went on to go to college at Salisbury and then transferred to Towson. He continued his running career both at Salisbury and Towson, but running longer distances of 5k’s and 10k’s instead of 800 meters.

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Mr. Kyle Reagan, Class of 2000, now teaches in DePaul and coaches Cross Country.

Now after 17 years since his graduation, Coach Reagan is back as a teacher and a coach instead of a student and an athlete. He hopes to have the same impact on students that other teachers had on him while he attended the Mount. He’s happy to be back, and hopes he can continue the excellence in the track program that Mount Saint Joseph has had for a long time now. He is ready to take on this runner-up track team and get that championship back. Ironically, Maryvale lost the outdoor track championship as well just like Saint Joe, getting second place. He said it hurts that he didn’t finish off his time at Maryvale with a win but is ready to get that bitter taste out of his mouth by putting together a Saint Joe track team that will be “well coached and will work hard.”

Mount Saint Joseph welcomes Coach Reagan back and is ready to see what he has in store for this track team in his return as a Gael.

Fall Sports Sets Tone for the Rest of the Year

Our fall sports teams put an air of electricity into school everyday because of the success every team was experiencing.  Four out of the five sports teams were in position to take home championships for their respective sports, with cross country being the only team who can say they met their goal set at the beginning of the season.  Although the other teams experienced losses, their dominance in the regular season has set the tone for the athletic attitude for the rest of the year.

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Senior Joey Clark in the rain against the Calvert Hall Cardinals

Maybe the most impressive, St. Joe soccer made their way to the top of the MIAA and one of the top teams in the state of Maryland.  The boys defeated St. Paul’s 4-1 in their last regular season game to cement a second place seed in the conference and a first round bye in the playoffs. I asked senior captain Joe Clark for his thoughts about his team’s dominant regular season, “We’ve managed to do so well because of our strong defense, letting up the least amount of goals in the MIAA,” he explained. “Another thing we have over other teams is a strong bench. All twenty-five guys on the team contribute to our wins, and we substitute constantly in games. Our team has a lot of heart and great chemistry.”  However, after defeating Calvert Hall in close games twice during the regular season, they were on the other side of that scenario when they played the Cardinals for a third time.

Next up is the surprising story of the VolleyGaels. The varsity volleyball team has reversed their fortunes from seasons past, improving their record to 12-4 as opposed to 6-12 from a season ago. The Gaels finished tied for third place in the MIAA and continued to look like a strong contender to compete in the championship. However, the team faced their biggest game since maybe their 2006 championship: a semi-final game against the undefeated Gilman Greyhounds.  The Gaels took the first set, but would drop the next three, and witnessed the Greyhounds advance to the championship.  Still, the VolleyGaels worked their tails off to finish with their best season since 2006.

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Senior Quarterback Christian Carter stiff arms a Calvert Hall opponent

The football team also saw a wealth of success this season. Senior quarterback Christian Carter finally gotten his chance to start, and made the most of it.  During an interview with the Baltimore Sun, Carter mentioned how the spread offense has impacted the amount of points he and his offense can put on the board. “It’s very fast. That’s why we score so much. We move at a fast pace. Everybody is open. It gets people clicking,” he said to Sun reporter Tony Worgo.  Another key story line was the team’s stellar defense throughout the course of the season.  The defense limited opposing teams’ offenses to an average of 1 to 2 scores a game.  I asked junior Ryan Gorman about how much of a difference the defense has made for the team this year, and he said, “Whenever our offense has been down, our defense has stepped up. But the same goes for the offense. When we’re down, we can count on the offense to step up.”  Because of their loss to McDonough, the football team needed to win out against the two teams above them in the rankings in order to win the league.  Unfortunately, the Gaels did not prevail, and finished in third place in the MIAA for the season.

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Senior Carter Williams running alongside Juniors Andrew Brinker and Sophomore Gabe Antone

Varsity cross country may be one of the least talked about sports in school, but Coach Turner sure knows what he is doing.  I checked the MIAA website for the standings and was surprised to see the Gaels sitting atop the conference at 7-0.  The team is comprised of seniors Alex Whittaker, Carter Williams, and Garrett Keidel, as well as juniors Hunter Petrik, Andrew Brinker, and sophomore Gabe Antone. Carter had this to say about his team’s under-the-radar season: “We don’t really mind that we’re an unnoticed sport. Our whole team has put in so much work. We’re all silent and hungry. We just go to the course, give it our all, and take care of business, and I think that shows in our record and performances we’ve had so far.”  Their approach worked as the XC team won the MIAA championship, and the private school state championship.

I’m excited to report that we can look forward to more sports later this year to being contenders to win it all.

There is not much that needs to be said about basketball, but we can all expect them to finish near the top of the conference.  I can honestly say that I believe no other school has more hype surrounding an individual sports team than we do for our basketball team.  Look for the hype to increase as 4-star guard Darryl Morsell announced Wednesday afternoon that he has decided to commit to the University of Maryland. We saw the hype surrounding the basketball team increase immediately, as ‘Darryl Morsell’ was trending on twitter not even an hour after committing to the University of Maryland.

It is my opinion that the indoor track team is very similar in terms of publicity to the cross country team. The indoor track team was the missing link in the clean sweep a year ago between indoor, outdoor, and cross country championships.  With cross country already crowned victors, look for indoor to attempt to complete the second leg of the cycle.

The Tier-1 ice hockey team is also said to be contenders for the championship. While talking to senior Jay Davis, he reported, “We are definitely better than last year, and I expect to see us in the championship game.” Looks like we can add hockey onto the list of teams to contend for a title this school year.

Coach Spurrier led his outdoor track team to a 1st place finish in the spring last school year. Obviously the team will look to repeat as champions, with maybe a position to clinch the running sweep (with cross country and indoor track). Outdoor track is yet another team that does not get enough press for their success, but hopefully we can bring to light how successful the team has the potential to be.

Even though my opinions for the baseball team are even more biased than all of the previous paragraphs, I do believe that our baseball team can compete to win the championship in the spring.  Comprised of fourteen returning players, most of whom obtained a wealth of experience a year ago,the team will look to win its first championship in thirteen years.

Although my initial prediction was that we’ll see six athletic teams win championships this school year, I still see the potential for a couple more in these next two sports seasons. I am very excited for what this year can bring.  The best thing I can say is that we should get out to as many home sporting events as we can and cheer on our classmates during their seasons!