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Former All-Star Takes The Mound As Pitching Coach

Lou Bernardi Brings

Playing Expertise to Old Westbury

The SUNY Old Westbury Panthers had a fantastic 2012 season on the baseball diamond—finishing with a record of 30-12—but will be receiving a significant boost by adding Lou Bernardi to the coaching staff as the pitching coach.

“The team had a great deal of success last season, but we’re looking to build on that,” said Bernardi. “I’m looking to instill a good work ethic, and I feel I can help that beginning with their off-season throwing program.”

The New Hyde Park native has had extensive success on the mound. He finished his collegiate career at New York Institute of Technology (NYIT) in 2010 as the program’s leader in appearances (67), and led the team in saves in 2008 with three.

He went on to play professional ball with the New York Federals of the New York State League, prior to playing with the St. George Roadrunners of the Golden League.

His first coaching job was with his alma mater as an assistant coach for the 2012 season.

Regarding his time as a member of the coaching staff, Bernardi said “It was a great way to give back to the program that did much for me as player. It was pretty beneficial being involved with the program I am familiar with, knowing the system and coaching the upper classmen who I played with.”    

Prior to his time at NYIT, Bernardi had one of the most successful careers any athlete has had in the history of Herricks High School. In addition to his leadership role of captain as a junior and senior, he was named the League MVP as well as a member of the All-State team. For his accomplishments, he was inducted into the Herricks High School Hall of Fame.    

This summer Bernardi also gained a considerable amount of experience as a head coach with the New York Atlantics of the ACBL. His team won the championship of the Kaiser division.

Bernardi possesses strong character, as evidenced by being the recipient of the Harold J. Hirschfield Memorial Leadership Award in 2010 with NYIT. The accolade is given to the player who displays strong leadership qualities.    

His guidance of the pitching staff will be crucial if the Panthers hope to unseat Farmingdale State Rams as the five-time defending champions of the Skyline Conference. The season ended in disappointing fashion as the Rams overcame a 6-run deficit in the ninth inning of the Conference finals.    

That is in the past, however, and Bernardi is confident the Panthers can give them a run for their money.    

“We’re going to compete. We will play Old Westbury baseball; good pitching, timely hitting and base running,” said Bernardi.

The team was led by its formidable offense, which ranked No. 1 in the nation in batting average (.362), runs per game (9.9) and stolen bases per game (5.79).     

The pitching staff struggled to a 5.00 ERA, but the addition of Bernardi and his experience will provide substantial aid.    

“I haven’t been a part of this conference but having coached Division-I helped me take on a role with bigger responsibility.”    

 

News

When life hands you lemons, make lemonade. That’s just what a Hicksville baker is doing, except in her case it isn’t lemons, but a gluten-free diet. Her lemonade stand of choice is her brand new gluten-free eatery, “Jac’s Bakeshop and Bistro,” which held its grand opening on April 12.  

“I’m a baker who can’t even eat wheat or eggs,” said owner Jaclyn Messina, chuckling at the irony.

There’s a lot you can do in 99 minutes. You could cook dinner, play a non-stop soccer game, watch a romantic comedy or hang out with Odysseus, Achilles and Hercules. If you chose the last option, Hicksville High School’s upcoming theatre production of The Iliad, The Odyssey, and All of Greek Mythology in 99 Minutes or Less  is the place for you.

The mouthful of a title says it all. The cast will take on over 80 characters as they speed through all of Greek mythology, including popular tales such as The Iliad and The Odyssey, in a little over an hour and a half.


Sports

Vito Sciascia was recently named Hicksville Soccer Club’s Volunteer of the Year at the 2014 Long Island Junior Soccer League 2014 Kick-off Convention.

Sciascia started coaching travel soccer in 1998 for a boys team, the Flash, who later changed their names to the Muddogs. He could always be found at various sporting fields trying to recruit new soccer players. He would make each of these boys feel important and there was always room for another player. He tried to never turn a child away and when other coaches were having trouble with a boy he would take them on his team, no one was ever too much for him. Sciascia found the good in all those boys and they in return respected him. He took them to many tournaments and solicited enough sponsorship so that it was never a financial burden on their families.

Cantiague Park Senior Men’s Golf League had its first tournament on Thursday April 4. Twenty golfers came out on on a crisp but sunny morning. Charlie Hong was the only man to score under a 40, with a 38 and won for low overall score. Jim O’ Brien  scored a 41, and won low overall net in a tie-breaker with Mike Guerriero.

Competition on the nine-hole course is divided into two divisions. Flight A is for players with a handicap of 13 or lower. Flight B is for players with a handicap of 14 or more. The league is a 100 percent handicap league. Any man 55 years or older is eligible for membership. We have many openings for this year, and you can sign up anytime throughout the the season.


Calendar

American Legion Meeting

April 21

HS Theater in the Round

April 24-26

Science Fair

April 26



Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com