Registration Opens for Cross Country

Registration is open for the Dutchess County CYO cross country program that will introduce basic running skills and techniques to runners in grades five through eight.

Runners will meet their coaches by the statue in front of Our Lady of Lourdes High School, 131 Boardman Road, in the Town of Poughkeepsie. Practices will be on Thursdays from 4 to 5 p.m. starting Sept. 9 and continuing Sept. 16, Sept. 23, Sept. 30 and Oct. 7.

Contact Jill at philipbarj@ollchs.org for more information or to volunteer in the program. Click here to register.

Siegrist Preparing for Next Season

Maddy Siegrist is spending her summer improving a part of her game to give opposing defenses additional concerns when she steps on the floor with the Villanova University women’s basketball team during the 2021-2022 season.

“This summer I’m really focusing on my midrange game,” she told CNY during a lunch break at the Maddy Siegrist Girls Basketball Clinic at Poughkeepsie Day School in the Town of Poughkeepsie Aug. 16.

“I’m comfortable inside, I’m comfortable shooting the ball from three and getting those shots off. Just having the ball in my hands to create different shots is what I’m focused on.”

The Our Lady of Lourdes High School graduate, who also played in the St. Martin de Porres CYO program in Poughkeepsie, already has been a handful for Villanova opponents.

Read the rest of this story in this week’s Catholic New York or at www.cny.org

Photo by Chris Sheridan

CYO Halts Indoor Activities

Seth Peloso, director of archdiocesan CYO, announced there will be no indoor CYO activity during the months of September and October due to the rising trajectory in the number of COVID cases.

“Any indoor activity should be moved outdoors in a safe environment and follow outdoor COVID related guidance provided by the CDC and your local health departments,” he said on CYO.org.

Peloso added that CYO will plan to offer outdoor fall programming, but everyone must be prepared “for a range of possibilities from a delayed start, and even once again, the possibility of a suspended season.

Peloso expects to have another announcement with a plan of action around Oct. 1.

Ice Bucket Challenge at Iona Prep

The captains of the Iona Prep varsity and junior varsity football teams participated in the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge to honor Iona Prep graduate Pat Quinn Aug. 20.

Quinn, a 2001 graduate of the school who died of ALS in November 2020, started the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge in August 2013. He challenged friends to do the same to raise money for ALS research to find a cure.

Pat Quinn’s father, Pat Quinn Sr., addressed the crowd at the event that also was attended by two of his son’s classmates at Iona Prep, Anthony Fava and Frankie Meade.

PHOTO CAPTION: Iona Prep varsity football coach Joe Spagnola gets dunked by Justin Joly and Jose Ruiz.

PHOTO COURTESY OF IONA PREP

Velazquez, Yankees Start Road Trip

Andrew Velazquez continues to live out his childhood dream as the New York Yankees open a nine-game road trip against the Braves in Atlanta on Monday and Tuesday before starting a pivotal four-game series in Oakland on Thursday.

The Fordham Prep graduate’s story continued Saturday when he hit his first career home run, leaving family and friends overcome with tears and emotions, during his team’s 7-1 victory over the Minnesota Twins.

“Get home as quick as I could so I could celebrate with the boys in the dugout,” Velazquez, who has the home run ball, said in sharing his thoughts as he rounded the bases during the postgame press conference.

Known for his defense and speed, the shortstop is hitting .242 with a home run, six RBI, eight runs scored and two stolen bases since joining the Yankees Aug. 9 in Kansas CIty when Gleyber Torres was placed on the injured list.

“Just playing really great for us–playing great on the field; running the bases, his athleticism shows up; and he’s given us good at bats,” said Yankees manager Aaron Boone, who will be faced with a tough roster decision if third baseman Gio Urshela, who started his rehab assignment Sunday, returns from strained hamstring before New York travels west or seven games in Oakland and Anaheim.

Velazquez, who attended St. Francis Xavier School in the Bronx, said he’s forgetting the past and not thinking ahead each time he steps on the field. 

“When I get here, it’s about work,” said Velazquez, who stayed with his parents in the Bronx during the recent homestand. “The guys are so good at just prepping for the game and being loose in the clubhouse and in the dugout, but like about business, that I can’t help but fall in line.”

PHOTO COURTESY OF THE NEW YORK YANKEES

Rangers Great, Rod Gilbert, Dies at 80

Rod Gilbert, the NewYork Rangers all-time leading scorer known as Mr. Ranger, died Sunday at the age of 80.

Born and raised Catholic in the Canadian province of Quebec, Gilbert was honored in 2013 with the John V. Mara Sportsmanship Award at the 77th annual CYO Club of Champions Dinner in 2013. In 2018, he attended the CYO dinner where former Rangers goalie Mike Richter received the Mara Sportsmanship Award. Also in 2018, Gilbert was at St. Patrick’s Cathedral for Rusty Staub’s Memorial Mass that also was attended by Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred, former Mets owner Jeff Wilpon and Mets television analyst and former pitcher Ron Darling, former Mets manager and player Bobby Valentine, and former Mets John Franco and Lee Mazzilli.

“Growing up in a Catholic household, saying the Rosary once a week with my mom and going to Mass was part of my childhood and something that just to this day has remained with me,” Gilbert said at the 2013 dinner.

“When I came to New York, I came with my friend Frank Gifford (a former New York Giants star, a National Football League Hall of Famer and the 1963 recipient of the CYO Club of Champions John V. Mara award) to a CYO event and ever since then I’ve remained close to the organization,” Gilbert added. “The CYO represents a lot of good and I’m proud to be here tonight.”

Gilbert played all 18 of his NHL seasons with the Rangers, finishing with team records of 406 goals and 1021 points. His 615 assists are second to Brian Leetch’s 741.

Gilbert’s No. 7 was the first number retired by the Rangers. The eight-time NHL All-Star was elected to the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1982.

“Everyone in the Rangers organization mourns the loss of a true New York icon,” said Rangers President and General Manager Chris Drury in a release from the team. “Rod’s remarkable talent and zest for life personified this city and endeared him to hockey fans and non-hockey fans alike. Growing up a young Rangers fan, one of the first names I ever heard about was Rod Gilbert – he was synonymous with Rangers hockey. It was an incredible privilege to get to know Rod. His passion and dedication to the Rangers will forever be a source of inspiration for me.”

Gilbert is survived by his wife, Judy; his children, Chantal, Justin, Holly, and Brooke; his grandchildren, Arielle, Owen, Kaya, Jordyn, Lila, Logan, and Damon; and his siblings, Jean Marie and André.

Velazquez Shines for Yankees

Andrew Velazquez compared beating the Boston Red Sox at Yankee Stadium in his dreams and in real life.

“In real life, it was way better,” the Fordham Prep graduate said in the postgame press conference after the Yankees completed a three-game sweep of the Boston Red Sox with a 5-2 victory Wednesday night.

Velazquez, who attended St. Francis Xavier School in the Bronx, was presented by his teammates the team’s championship belt for his efforts in Wednesday’s game, which included a pair of RBI singles and a defensive gem to end the game at shortstop.

Known for his speed and defense, Velazquez is hitting .217 with a double, stolen base, three runs scored and four RBI since joining the Yankees Aug. 9 when Gleyber Torres was placed on the 10-day injured list. All four RBI and a number of defensive gems came against the Red Sox in his first games as a Yankee in the Bronx.

“It’s what you dream about,” said Velazquez, who is staying with his parents in the Bronx during the homestand. “You come here, you want to be a part of something, so not only doing good on the field, but gaining respect of the guys in the locker room.”

The Yankees begin a four-game series Thursday night with the Minnesota Twins in the Bronx.

PHOTO COURTESY OF THE NEW YORK YANKEES

CYONY Sets Cross Country Schedule

CYO New York released its schedule for the 2021 cross country season that includes six meets all scheduled for Sundays at 1 p.m.

The four regular-season meets are scheduled for Sept. 19, Sept. 25, Oct. 3 and Oct. 17 at St. Augustine in Ossining. The county championships are Oct. 24 at St. Augustine.

The Archdiocesan Championships are Nov. 7 at a site to be determined.Runners in kindergarten through eighth grade are eligible to compete.

Visit www.cyony.org to register and learn more about the upcoming season.

Siegrist Holding Basketball Clinic

Our Lady of Lourdes High School graduate and current Villanova University women’s basketball star Maddy Siegrist will be holding a one-day Maddy Siegrist Girls Basketball Clinic at Poughkeepsie Day School in the Town of Poughkeepsie on Monday. Aug. 16.

The clinic, sponsored by Edge Athletics, is for girls ages nine to 17.

Siegrist, a rising junior, was a college All-American as a sophomore after becoming the third player in Big East Conference history to lead the conference in scoring with 23.1 points per game and rebounding with 10.1 rebounds per game.

In her first two seasons at Villanova, Siegrist has collected 1,131 points, 512 rebounds and 105 three-point field goals. She became the fastest player to hit 1,000 career points at Villanova, reaching the milestone in 50 games.

Tuition for the clinic is $65 per player. Email info@edgeathletics.com,  visit www.edgeathletics.com/summerprograms or call (845) 202-EDGE to register.

PHOTO COURTESY OF VILLANOVA UNIVERSITY

Knicks Sign Walker

Kemba Walker is now a member of the New York Knicks.

The product of Rice High School in Harlem reportedly signed a two-year deal worth $18 million on Thursday.

Walker, 31, agreed to a buyout with the Oklahoma City Thunder one week ago and needed to clear waivers before signing with the Knicks. The four-time NBA All-Star was acquired by the Thunder in June from the Boston Celtics with two years and $74 million remaining on his contract.

Walker averaged 19.3 points, 4.9 assists and 4.3 rebounds per game with the Celtics during the 2020-2021 season. For his 10-year NBA career with Charlotte and Boston, he’s averaging 19.9 points, 3.8 rebounds, 5.4 assists and 1.3 steals per game.

A first-round pick for Charlotte in the 2011 draft, Walker will share point guard duties with Derrick Rose, who joined the Knicks this past season and was just signed for three more years with the Knicks.

The two guards once played a high school game against one another at Madison Square Garden. Rose later played at Memphis, leading the Tigers to the 2008 NCAA Division I championship game, and Walker led the University of Connecticut to the 2011 NCAA championship.