Westchester Sports Recap0

BASEBALL (RECORD 22-12 REGION 9-8, CONFERENCE 9-8)

TUESDAY APRIL 30 (Valhalla, NY) – Westchester Community College freshman pitcher Michael Cox (Cortlandt Manor, NY/Walter Panas HS) had every reason for a let-down on Monday. Instead of finding reasons to falter, Cox found his rhythm, pitching a two-hit complete-game gem as Westchester Community College notched its ninth consecutive win, 9-1 over Dutchess Community College at Vikings Field.

After dropping the nightcap, 3-2, the Vikings are now 22-10 overall, and 9-6 in Mid-Hudson Conference and Region XV play.

While the opener was a mercy rule victory for the Vikings after a late offensive barrage, the story of the game was actually Cox as he improved to 5-3. Cox allowed two hits and a run during a sloppy top of the first inning, and then did not allow a hit the rest of the way, striking out three. After a mid-season slide during which he allowed 17 earned runs over four games, Cox has buckled down.

Down 1-0 heading into the bottom of the first inning, Westchester quickly took the lead. Sophomore Steve Guzman (Bronx, NY/John F. Kennedy HS) led off with a triple, and later scored on a CJ Spence (Mount Vernon, NY/Mount Vernon HS) single to tie things. An Aaron Roman (Pelham, NY/Pelham HS) single brought home Steve Messerschmitt (Carmel, NY/Carmel HS) for a 2-1 lead. An inning later, freshman Jhojandy Hernandez (Bronx, NY/Salesian) scored an unearned run to make it 3-1.

Speaking of unearned runs, the score remained 3-1 until the bottom of the fifth inning when Westchester scored five of them, thanks to a crucial Dutchess error that turned a routine fly out into a huge opportunity for the Vikings. The key hit was a bases load double by Tyler Parshley (Carmel, NY/Carmel HS) that scored Roman and Spence to make it 5-1, and the lead eventually became 9-1, allowing Westchester to end things in the sixth inning.

Six Vikings combined for nine hits with Parshley going 2 for 3 with two RBI’s and a run scored, while Spence went 2 for 4 with an RBI and a run scored, while Guzman went 2 for 3 with a run scored. Also for the Vikings, Hernandez and Messerschmitt each scored twice.

The nightcap was a thriller to say the least as an old-fashioned pitcher’s duel ensued, featuring Viking freshman Hector Camacho (Harrison, NY/Harrison HS) and the top pitcher from Dutchess CC. The Falcons led 1-0 heading into the top of the sixth inning when a small-ball infused two-run rally appeared to put Dutchess ahead for good … at least it seemed that way. Westchester battled back to load the bases in the bottom of the sixth inning, only to end the frame with two consecutive strike outs and no runs scored.

An inning later, Gonzalez led off with a double, and a error during Parshley’s next at-bat plated Gonzalez to make it 3-1. Sean Vanegas (Bronx, NY/Mount St. Michael) promptly singled home Parshley to make it 3-2 with nobody out. A Hernandez single put the winning run on base without an out recorded, and the Vikings actually loaded the bases with one out, but Dutchess’s bullpen rose to the occasion, retiring two straight batters for the win.

Camacho was brilliant, allowing one earned runs over five innings, and the Viking bullpen allowed only a single earned run over two innings, however, the Westchester bats held to only five hits. Messerschmitt went 1 for 1 with two walks.

THURSDAY MAY 2 (Loch Sheldrake, NY) -During the second inning of the opening game of Thursday’s doubleheader at Sullivan Community College, sophomore Steve Guzman (Bronx, NY/John F. Kennedy HS) lined a single up the middle to bring in a run, and give Westchester a 3-2 lead.   The base hit was the 100th of Guzman’s career, allowing the Viking shortstop to take a place among the all-time great baseball players to play for Westchester Community College. Guzman would later collect his 101st career hit, drive in three runs, and score a run, but Sullivan won the opener 12-8, and notched a 9-1 win in the nightcap.

With their third straight loss, the Vikings are now 22-12 overall, and 9-8 in Mid-Hudson Conference and Region XV play. While Westchester remains in second place in the region, their remaining three games will go a long way to determine playoff seeding.

The opener saw the Viking bats come alive for 12 hits and 8 runs, but defense proved to be the culprit for the Vikings. Westchester made a combined six errors, leading to six unearned runs for the Generals, and providing the difference between a win and a loss for Westchester. The Vikings led 2-0 entering the bottom of the first inning, 4-2 entering the bottom of the third inning, and 5-4 entering the bottom of the fourth inning, but Sullivan scored seven straight runs to blow the game wide open.

Freshman CJ Spence (Mount Vernon, NY/Mount Vernon HS) and sophomore Sean Vanegas (Bronx, NY/Mount St. Michael) had three hits apiece, with Vanegas scoring three runs, and freshman Aaron Roman (Pelham, NY/Pelham HS) reached base twice and scored a run.

Sophomore Dylan Sabia (Mahopac, NY/Iona Prep) gave Westchester five solid innings on the mound, allowing only three earned runs while striking out seven, but undone by his defense, which led to five unearned runs.

The nightcap saw the Vikings jump out to a quick 1-0 lead, but Sullivan responded with a seven-run rally during the bottom of the first inning, and cruised from there. Roman drove in Guzman for Westchester. The story of the game for the Vikings was a heroic performance by freshman Jake Jempty (Cortlandt Manor, NY/Walter Panas HS) in relief as he pitched a magnificent 4.1 innings, allowing only two runs. Jempty gave the Vikings a chance to mount a comeback, but the Sullivan pitching staff proved to be just a bit too much as the Generals allowed a combined five hits.

GOLF    

MONDAY APRIL 29 (Yonkers, NY) – This was simply a tournament the Westchester Community College Golf Team had to win. Freshman Justin Ming (Pelham, NY/Pelham HS) knocked down three birdies on the front nine, tied his career-best performance with a 74, and finished three strokes ahead of the next best competitor at the WCC Tournament on Monday. Ming led the Vikings to their biggest victory of the 2019 season, and Westchester firmly secured themselves a place in the driver’s seat to clinch their fourth consecutive Mid-Hudson Conference Championship. The Vikings combined to shoot a 344 on Monday, 29 strokes ahead of Ulster Community College, and 30 strokes ahead of Orange CC to secure their third first place finish among Mid-Hudson Conference schools this season.

The tournament took place at Dunwoodie Golf Course in Yonkers, New York.

More importantly, with the win, the Vikings now have 19 team points for the 2019 season, two points ahead of Ulster, who made attempted to even out the Mid-Hudson Conference standings on Monday after a stunning victory over the Vikings last Thursday. With two conference events remaining for the 2019 campaign, if Westchester wins one more tournament, and finishes no lower than second place in the other, the Vikings will earn their fourth consecutive Mid-Hudson Conference Championship.

Ming was outstanding at Dunwoodie for the second time this season, as he shot a 74 during both of Westchester’s home tournaments in 2019. Ming now has 17-stroke lead among Mid-Hudson Conference golfers for the top overall individual finish this season. Also for the Vikings, freshman John DeMase (Somers, NY/Somers HS) also tied his career-best performance, shooting an 81. Four more Vikings broke a 100 on Monday, as Cian Guilfoyle (Yonkers, NY/Yonkers Montesori Academy) finished with a 92, Conner Gilchrist (Tuckahoe, NY/Iona Prep) and Matthew Matera (South Salem, NY/JFK Catholic) each shot a 97, and Elio Jimenez (Port Chester, NY/Port Chester HS) shot a 99.

Westchester also received a strong performance from sophomore Matthew Rice (Lagrangeville, NY/Arlington HS), who shot a 105.

THURSDAY MAY 2  (Suffern, NY) – In golf terms, we are at the 16th hole, the ball is sitting on the lip of the cup, and all that stands between the Westchester Community College Golf team and a fourth consecutive Mid-Hudson Conference Championship is a simple tap-in. Of course, as has been documented throughout the sports pages, anything can happen before the final ball falls, but if the Vikings perform as they did on Thursday at the Rockland Community College Tournament, in a week, they will celebrate yet another conference championship. Sophomore Cian Guilfoyle (Yonkers, NY/Yonkers Montesori Academy) and freshman Kevin Berrios (Yonkers, NY/Fordham Prep) turned in their finest performances of the season. Freshmen Justin Ming (Pelham, NY/Pelham HS) and John DeMase(Somers, NY/Somers HS) both tied with a team-best 82 as Westchester finished second on Thursday afternoon, combining for a score of 342, 17 strokes behind Nassau Community College.

Most importantly, WCC was the victor among Mid-Hudson Conference schools, finishing 14 strokes ahead of Ulster Community College (356), 28 strokes ahead of Orange Community College (370), and 51 strokes ahead Rockland Community College (393). The event held at Spook Rock Golf Course in Suffern, New York.

With the conference win, Westchester CC now has 24 team points for the season, three more than second-place Ulster CC with one event remaining. Should Westchester finish in the top-two during the Sullivan Community College Tournament on Thursday, May 9, the Vikings will clinch the Mid-Hudson Conference Championship for the fourth straight year.

Guilfoyle picked the right event to turn in his best effort of the season, finishing with an 88, marking the first time this season has finished in the 80’s after shaving four strokes off his previous season-best performance. The effort allowed Guilfoyle to move into eighth place in the individual conference standings. Berrios also broke into the 80’s for the first time this season, finishing with an 88 as well, five strokes better than his previous season-best.

Ming continues his effort to finish the season atop the conference leader board. The freshman remains in first place overall, now by 13 strokes after another fine effort on Thursday. A solid finish at Sullivan CC next week will make Ming the Mid-Hudson Conference Player of the Year.

ATHLETICS

As the 2018-19 academic year winds down, the Westchester Community College Athletic Department took a time-out on Wednesday evening to celebrate an incredible year full of individual and team achievement, academic success, and impressive growth during the department’s annual Awards Banquet. One of the largest crowds to ever attend the event were on hand to recap what has been a historically successful year for the Vikings, and celebrate the achievements for each team.

The event kicked off with Director of Athletics Michael Belfiore welcoming nearly 100 guests to the event, and then Westchester Community College President Dr. Belinda S. Miles addressed the crowd and highlighted several team achievements during the year, comparing the challenges of building successful athletic teams to the development of team-like atmospheres within the campus community. After dinner, the awards presentation began, with special appreciation awards given to four members of the campus community for their support of the Athletic Department mission, and then the second annual V-CASE (Vikings Collaborative Academic Success Environment) Award went to Baseball sophomore Steve Messerschmitt.

From there, each team presented its season-ending awards, except for the Baseball team, which will wait until their season concludes.

The evening ended with the Athletic Department awards. The male Student-Athlete of the Year went to Soccer Goalkeeper Guilherme Griza after his All-American campaign during which he led the Vikings to the Mid Huson Conference Championship and a spot in the Region XV Semifinals. The female Student-Athlete of the Year awarded to Volleyball/Track & Field sophomore Alysha Owens, who was instrumental to Westchester CC Volleyball capturing its first Mid-Hudson Conference Championship since 2001, also qualified for the upcoming NJCAA National Track & Field Championships in two events.

Finally, the female Scholar-Athlete of the Year went to Volleyball sophomore Taylor Mello, who established herself as one of the best volleyball players in the conference during her lone season as a Viking while maintaining one of the highest Grade Point Averages in the department. The make Scholar-Athlete of the Year was Matthew Rice, who competed in Bowling and Golf, while also maintaining an exceptionally high GPA.

The evening also featured team specific awards as each athletic program celebrated an outstanding season:

TEAM:

AWARD:

RECIPIENT:

Men’s Basketball Most Valuable Player Miles Haughton
Men’s Basketball Rookie of the Year Fabian Johnson
Men’s Basketball Coach’s Award Nathan Emanuel
Women’s Basketball Most Valuable Player Shanaya Jones
Women’s Basketball Rookie of the Year Jada Tom
Women’s Basketball Coach’s Award Paige Collins
Men’s Bowling Most Valuable Player Edward Aiken
Men’s Bowling Rookie of the Year Matthew Rush
Men’s Bowling Coach’s Award Matthew Rice
Women’s Bowling Most Valuable Player Brianna Kara
Men’s Cross Country Most Valuable Player Randy Culcay
Men’s Cross Country Coach’s Award Bolaji Akinbowale
Men’s Cross Country Rookie of the Year Mark Naulaguari
Women’s Cross Country Most Valuable Player Hayley Duggan
Women’s Cross Country Coach’s Award Yaminah Calinda
Golf Most Valuable Player Justin Ming
Golf Rookie of the Year John DeMase
Golf Coach’s Award Cian Guilfoyle
Soccer Most Valuable Player Guilherme Griza
Soccer Rookie of the Year Jose Tovar
Soccer Coach’s Award Kevin Umanzor
Men’s Track & Field Most Valuable Player (Sprints) Kumani McLean
Men’s Track & Field Most Valuable Player (Jumps) Malik Sainnoval
Men’s Track & Field Most Valuable Player (Throws) Giovani Castillo
Men’s Track & Field Most Valuable Player (Distance) Randy Culcay
Women’s Track and Field Most Valuable Player Alysha Owens
Volleyball Most Valuable Player Madison Young
Volleyball Rookie of the Year Melody Pabon
Volleyball Coach’s Award Taylor Mello
Volleyball Coach’s Award Esther Uddoh
Award of Appreciation Thomas Nugent
Award of Appreciation Adam Frank
Award of Appreciation Ruben Barato
Award of Appreciation Virginia Falcone
V-CASE Award Steve Messerschmitt
Male Student-Athlete of the Year Guilherme Griza
Female Student-Athlete of the Year Alysha Owens
Male Scholar-Athlete of the Year Matthew Rice
Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year Taylor Mello

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