Written by Vinny Messana, firstname.lastname@example.org Thursday, 28 August 2014 00:00
Nobody wants to make excuses, but sometimes when the injury bug hits, it’s impossible to overcome. Mineola Mustangs football head coach Dan Guido, entering his 28th season at helm, knows the injuries were the cause for their first-round defeat at the hands of the West Hempstead Rams last November.
“There was too many injuries on the offensive line last season,” said Guido. “It was supposed to be our strength and it ended up being a weak link by the end of the season.”
Even with those injuries, the Mustangs went 4-4 during the regular season.
This season, the Mustangs are projected to finish third—behind Roosevelt and Locust Valley—in Conference IV, moving from Conference III. Guido believes that optimism is due to their experience.
“We are returning all of our skill position guys from last year—with the exception of Vinny Bieniek,” he said.
Bieniek, the 6-foot-2 quarterback from last season, graduated and moved on to play baseball at SUNY Old Westbury. His play was a major reason the team clinched a playoff spot last year. In their fourth victory of the season, he passed for 183 yards and three touchdowns while adding a touchdown on the ground.
He will be replaced by senior James Gerstner. Despite his relative inexperience under center, Guido is confident that the offense will not skip a beat.
“He’s a smart and quick athlete,” said Guido. “He’s quite a lacrosse player as well.” Gerstner had been the running back last year, but previously played quarterback on the junior varsity team in 2012.
It will be important that he is protected by the offensive line, which Guido believes will be crucial to their success this season. The unit graduated some solid players from 2013, but will be senior-laden.
“The guys have been working hard with the coaches,” said Guido. “Time will tell how it plays out but I think we’ll be okay there. The unit suffered a huge blow last year with a slew of injuries.”
The injury bug originally hit when Anthony Caruso went down with an injury before the season. The 6-foot-4, 290 pound senior was going to be counted on to anchor the o-line, but his absence affected the dynamic of the entire line.
Even without playing his senior season, he was able to parlay the success of his junior season into a scholarship at LIU Post.
“Caruso was easy to run behind,” he said. “But you can’t plan for injuries.”
On the defensive side of the ball, the team will be relying on the experienced unit that will be returning eight starters from last year. Guido believes that will be an improved unit from 2013 that allowed over 30 points four times.
They struggled to defend the run—notably Enrique McFarlane and Bruce Gibbs of West Hempstead, who combined to rush for 275 yards and four TDs.
The team will open up at Hampton Street Stadium on Sept. 13 at 2 p.m. against Valley Stream South.
Saturday, 11 October 2014 00:00
Audition Hosts: Eleanor Rigby’s Restauant, Mineola Village Hall, Piccola Bussola and Plum Tomatoes
Audition Team: Master Performance Artist Ed Dennehy of Huntington/ formerly of Mineola
Robert Busch, Little Neck and Melville Fire Department, Adrian Gaeckler: Oyster Bay/ Nassau Coliseum Staff, Nigel Gretton: Hempstead/ St John’s University Performing Arts Chair Lady Laura, Hempstead/ Global Performing Artist, Ralph DeSalvo: Williston Park, Musician/ Band Leader.
Al Trompeter, Entertainment Promoter
Special Touches: Bagelman of Mineola ( Entertainment Committee Host)
Creations de Belle of Mineola (Street Decorations/ Balloons)
Friday, 10 October 2014 00:00
Tom Hayden has been a member of Mineola Golden Age for nearly 20 years.
Growing up in Flushing, Queens, he has lived in Mineola for about 40 years. Hayden has five children—two on Long Island, two in Florida, and one in Maryland—and 13 grand-children, all girls.
Thursday, 16 October 2014 00:00
The Mineola Mustangs ended last year’s playoff run in a 34-6 drubbing from the West Hempstead Rams. Mineola was poised for another post season push in 2014 and it showed last week, with a 15-14 victory over the Rams in homecoming weekend.
With a slow start in the first half, Mineola (4-1) put their first points on the board in the second quarter with a field goal by senior Robert Lang. After a touchdown by the Rams (2-3), they headed into halftime 7-3.
Thursday, 09 October 2014 00:00
Despite two goals from Liam Going, the BU11 Mineola FC squad fell to a relentless and talented Hota Panthers team at Soccer Park in Plainview on Sept. 6. Hota jumped out to a 4-0 lead before Going connected on his first tally, launching a 30-yard free kick that dropped over the Hota keeper. The Mineola striker’s second goal brought his team to within two goals of their opponent, but Hota scored several more goals in the second half in a strong performance. Mineola’s Nicholas Buffolino and Luke Sommese gave solid efforts for Mineola in the season-opener for both teams.