Sports Shorts

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By Joe Gonillo
For The Essex Reporter

Happy Thanksgiving! As one of my all-time favorite holidays, I love everything this one has to offer. Family, food, football, November’s shining moment, vacation and turkey. Not sure why we don’t eat more bird during the year? Anyway, enjoy your day. I have a feeling I will.

Winter sports began last week. With no school – but in-service Monday and Tuesday – practices remain after school. No school Wednesday, Thanksgiving or Friday then it’s back to school Monday. Once back to the grind, the countdown until Christmas vacation begins. Unofficially it will be three weeks and about 20 days until the next break – more on that next week. Games will begin that week.

Senior Recognition

Last week at the Vermont Student-Leadership Conference. Kathleen Young and Brendan Gleason were chosen as Vermont Scholar-Athletes by the Vermont State Athletic Directors Association. Only five seniors of each gender in our state are selected for this prestigious honor. Both are remarkable examples of amazing student-athletes here at EHS. Kathleen will be attending Harvard next fall and playing field hockey, while Brendan has narrowed his collegiate search down to Tufts, Cornell and Notre Dame where he plans to play lacrosse. My money is on the Fighting Irish. Boy would I love to go to a Notre Dame football game in South Bend next fall.

Winter Schedule

Our Athletic Director has a supply of Winter Season Schedules in the office. If you work at school, stop by and help yourself. In the meantime feel free to check the EHS athletic website for team schedules. Updates will occur over the winter.

Sock Drive

The Athletic Leadership Council will be holding a Sock Drive to support the needs of local homeless shelters starting on Tuesday, Dec. 2. There will be drop locations set up near the main office at EHS and at each Home athletic contest in December. Feel free to contribute and participate.

Track and Field Clinic

The Vermont Track and Field Cross Country Coaches Association sponsored the first track and field clinic in our state in quite a while Saturday at Essex Middle School. The VTFCCCA had coaches and speakers from UVM, Middlebury and Dartmouth Colleges as well as Bryant University. South Burlington and Essex High School also contributed speakers. One notable presenter was Jason Polakowski the strength training coach at Bryant who is an Essex alum and former high hurdle state champion. Thanks to Geoff Bennett and Chris Polakowski for organizing.

Kara Sheftic

Speaking of former EHS athletes, basketball player Kara Sheftic had seven points in Boston University’s 63-62 comeback win over Harvard last week. Her play on defense was also crucial down the stretch, and Coach Steding said Sheftic limited Harvard’s presence in the interior. “She did an amazing job,” Steding said. “I thought that she was solid. The instant you tell Kara something, the instant you tell her change this and do it this way, she applies it immediately. She doesn’t question things. She just accepts it, does it and gets to work. She’s physically tough. She’s got a great frame. She’s got a lot of upside and potential. She’s learning to be a scorer, and she’s strong. She’s learned really well.” Very nice praise.

Kathleen Young

Speaking about Kathleen Young and accolades, she was named Burlington Free Press Miss Field Hockey, Metro Player of the Year, and Twin State 2014 … and 2013. Young scored seven goals and had six assists, totaling 25 goals and 31 assists in her high school career. Teammates Tiffany Barnes, Christina Tellez, Madison Corkum, and Sienna Teare also garnered honors. Not sure how Jenna Puleo was not mentioned.

Boys’ Hockey

Boys’ hockey wins the lottery and will be playing the first Hornet game of the winter on Dec. 3 after break.

Final Thoughts

Is Florida State an exciting team to watch or what? The Patriots are rolling, Odell Beckham can play – though I thought he should have been flagged for offensive pass interference – and so can Tony Romo.