Farewell Fall Sports

By Lauren DiGregorio and Janmak Saji


As fall sports conclude, the athletes at NHP have battled hard as they reach the final stretch of their respective seasons. Whether it was football, volleyball, soccer, or field hockey, the Gladiators have been practicing and playing hard, adapting quickly to the changes and adversity the season has brought forward.


On April 3, the boys’ football team faced off against Calhoun. The game had a thrilling start as senior Luke Orbon passed to his brother, junior Eric Orbon, for a touchdown in the first 13 seconds. In the same quarter, Luke Orbon weaved through the defense for another touchdown, finishing the first quarter 14-0. Already off to a dominant lead, the Gladiator football team continued to put pressure on Calhoun, allowing Luke Orbon and Nick Depompeis to score two more touchdowns. Thanks to the suffocating offense and defense played by NHP, the first half of the game finished with a score of 28-0. Although competitors managed to make a touchdown, the home team still led the game, and during the final quarter of play, NHP completely regained momentum. Two touchdowns by Luke Orbon and Depompeis sealed Calhoun away as New Hyde Park won 41-7. The team has finished their season with a 4-2 record.


“Even though I got injured and wasn’t able to finish the season with the team, I’m happy I got to enjoy it with my teammates,” said senior football player Christian Sollecito.


Sources by Anna Detke

Clockwise from the top left, senior Luke Orbon gets ready to throw the ball to a teammate; senior Ryan Gonzalez plays defense against Long Beach; junior Nick DePompeis scores a touchdown; the team walks out onto the field after halftime.


On March 17, the boys’ varsity volleyball team faced off against Calhoun. The first set started with Calhoun jumping on an early lead, and NHP was forced to call a timeout after an early 12-2 deficit with no counter to Calhoun’s hard spikes. They adjusted their errors and tried to come back, but Calhoun won the first set 13-25. The second set was a close battle where both teams traded points. Despite their reformed play and perseverance, NHP fell short finishing the second set 28-30. Calhoun got the best of New Hyde Park in the last set as they beat them 19-25. Unable to win in the playoffs, the team finished the season with a 2-8 record.


“It’s a difficult start to a lot of our guys’ senior seasons, but we have to live with it, play hard, and move forward,” said senior volleyball player David Son.


Sources by Anna Detke

The team displays their excitement as they are close to winning the game; senior David Son hits the ball over the net; senior Benjamin Mammen saves the volleyball from touching the ground.


With moving down a conference from last season, the girls’ varsity volleyball team had high hopes to start their season. They won all of their first five games in three sets and showed they were playing at the top of their conference. However, they lost their sixth game to Valley Stream South in four sets but continued to win games after that tough defeat. Despite the incredible record the team presented, they were unable to defeat VSS in order to get themselves a playoff spot, which rendered their season finished at 10-2.


“We all badly wanted that playoff spot but nevertheless, we had a great run, season, and record,” said senior volleyball player Siya Sharma.


Sources by Olivia Wong

The girls' varsity volleyball team huddles during a timeout to discuss plays; junior Sareena Jacob prepares to serve the ball.


The girls’ varsity field hockey team has had a challenging season so far. After dealing with quarantine and a lot of missing players, they fought hard with a record of 3-10. They are currently in fifth place in the first division. Although the team persevered in their final game to clinch playoffs, they lost and ended with a 3-11 record.


“Even though we didn’t have a typical field hockey season, it was especially good for me. As a senior, it would be my last season playing for NHP, so I literally played every practice and game to the fullest. We weren’t the 'best' team in the league, but I feel like I had the best, most loving and caring team I could ever ask for. Being a part of the team helped me get through a lot this year and for that I am so grateful,” said senior field hockey player Alyson Diep.


Sources by Saanvi Mirchandani

Coach Brocking talks to the field hockey team during a timeout; senior Maddie Sepcaru steals the ball from her opponent; focusing hard on the game, senior Bella Bigeni passes to her teammate.


The girls’ varsity soccer team worked hard in both practices and games. They have a record of two wins, five losses, and two ties, but they made the best out of a difficult season by making it to the second round of playoffs. Although they beat Clarke 5-0, their season was brought to a halt by Garden City in their latest playoff game.


“It’s sad to see the season end here, but everyone did their best and most importantly had fun together,” said senior soccer player Darla Petricca.


Sources by Saanvi Mirchandani

Senior Nicolette Caneda defends the ball from the opposing team; freshman Sofia Bigeni dribbles the ball across the field; the Lady Gladiators celebrate after senior Darla Petriccia scores a goal.


The boys’ soccer season finished with three wins, three losses and one tie. The team played well despite the demands the season brought forward, and executed their game plan in both practice and during games.


“I had a lot of fun playing soccer this season with my teammates. It didn’t matter if it was practice or a game, we practiced hard and we played hard,” said junior soccer player Juan Mejia.


Sources by Saanvi Mirchandani

Senior Thomas Stec kicks the ball past the players on the opposing team.


Girls’ varsity tennis enjoyed their season despite COVID-19 setbacks as well. For the seniors especially, they were glad to have a season, played with commitment and dedication, and proved to always fight for another point.


“I am really going to miss playing tennis and the sense of community the team gave me. Overall I missed the memories we did not get to make this year, many players left the team due to COVID so we lost a lot of friends; we also missed playing music on the bus and laughing while getting food at the shack before games. I really liked the season and loved meeting the new kids that will carry the team when I am gone,” said senior tennis player Jasmine Garnica.


At the last football home game on April 17, seniors in the various performing groups participated in their last halftime routines. Underclassmen made posters and bought flowers to honor the graduating seniors on each team.


Senior Performers:


Twirlers:

  • Captain Keralyn Lener

  • Co-captain Jada Seto

  • Celine Cherian

  • Alyssa Kim

  • Sophia Lin

  • Saanvi Mirchandani

  • Rachel Rotstein

  • Siya Sharma

  • Olivia Wong

Romanettes:

  • Captain Emma Fager

  • Captain Taylor Jung

  • Captain Kayla Mahoney

  • Captain Jenna Neu

  • Sophia Giamarino

Varsity Cheerleaders:

  • Captain Sophia Kalosinis

  • Captain Hailey Mikowski

  • Bella Rodriguez

Step Team:

  • Captain Evita George

  • Co-captain Thalia Torio

  • Alyson Diep

  • Riya Joseph

  • Jyotsna Kottilil

  • Isabella Le

  • Darla Petricca

  • Jenisha Saji

  • Julia Si


Sources by Anna Detke

Clockwise from the top left, senior Twirlers gather to receive roses from their coach; waving to the crowd, senior Steppers Evita George and Riya Joseph redeem their roses; finishing the last performance of the season, senior cheerleaders share a bittersweet moment; senior Romanette Sophia Giamarino acknowledges the audience after her name is called.


The fall season has been full of ups and downs for athletes in all different sports. Despite the hardships and hurdles, student-athletes have been working and playing hard to win and compete to the best of their abilities.