OB Men's Purple: Back Row: Bryan Van Cott, Pat Linden, Paul Murcott, Steve Mattucks, John LoRusso, John Neilly, Gregory Hoesl, Dustin Abbate, Brian Giraldi, Noel Grant; Kneeling: Paul Longo, Kenin Soltren, Brandon Perez, Manny Harmon, Julius Coston.
Hundreds of spectators gathered in the OBHS Gymnasium on Jan. 9 to cheer on their favorite player(s) of the past. Some were cheering for the Purple team, some for the Gold team, but everyone was cheering for the nearly 50-year spread of OBHS basketball alumni that showed up to play in tonight's games. The Master of Ceremonies for the event was District Athletic Director, Dawn Cerrone. Following a warm welcome to all, Ms. Cerrone introduced each player and called two very exciting contests.
The first game began with Lillian (Lil) Livolsi throwing out the game ball. Taking the court for the Women's game were former players Tillie Mirman ('06), Kristen Serikstad ('06), Sharon Knox ('76), Anja Hermann ('07), Kelly Brandt ('01), Kate Daub ('03), Tracey Scaramuzzo-O'Neil ('88), Kate Applequist ('08), Maria Barbaccia ('07), Precious Harmon ('90), KC Wright ('98), and Brittany Ranaldo ('06).
After more then a decade since her final season, Lauren Egan ('96) traveled down from Syracuse, NY to watch her sisters and former teammates play. Expecting her second child in May, Lauren elected to stay on the sidelines and coached the Gold team. She was assisted by Lauren Clonan ('96) and former player Heather Koines ('99). Basketball star, Ashley (Ranaldo) Lang ('96), who is expecting her third child, and Karen (Hawxhurst) Testa ('86) accepted the job of coaching the Purple team.
At the final buzzer of a full regulation game, with multiple lead changes throughout, the Purple team came away with a 24-20 win over the Gold. Erin Egan, currently coaching the Junior Varsity team at OBHS and graduate of the class of 1999, was named the "Most Valuable Player for the Gold team. Kristen Eagan ('01) received the honor for the Purple team. "This was so much fun," said Alejandra Huerfano ('06). "It's great being back and playing with my teammates again. It's an honor to be a part of this."
The Men's game immediately followed with another exciting match-up between 28 OBHS alumni letter winners. Dribbling down court, two steps behind the three-point arc, Nick Capozzo makes the shot. "That was good enough for the NBA," shouts Cerrone. That kind of shooting defined the game. They played to win, and entertained the crowd doing it.
Coached by current players CJ Durrant and Bryan VanCott, Purple came away with the win, with a final score of 62-60. Charles Durrant ('78) took the reigns coaching the Gold team. Warmed-up and ready to go were John LoRusso ('73), Manny Harmon ('89), Noel Grant ('90), Steven Mattucks ('90), Paul Murcott ('94), Brian Giraldi ('02), Brandon Perez ('06), Paul Longo ('06), Patrick Linden ('06), John Neilly ('07), Gregory Hoesl ('07), Kenin Soltren ('08), Ryan Piper ('94), Kurt LeBright ('98), Richie Carames ('98), Casey Neilly ('99), Ronnie Ranaldo ('03), Dan Kane ('03), Shane Soltren ('05), Scott Applequist ('05), Brian Tiyaloglu ('06), Jason Shoemaker ('07), and Ben Asher ('08). Dustin Abbate ('02) and Nick Capozzo ('05) were named the "MVP" for the Purple and Gold teams respectively.
The senior player of the game was former great Julius (Butch) Coston of 1965 team. "When I heard about the alumni game, I couldn't think of a reason not to show up," said Coston. "I still play with a lot of these guys down at the courts. I wasn't worried."
For many of these men, it was their first time playing competitively since high school. After the game, Rafael Cornelius ('98) said, " I had a lot of fun tonight, and I felt good out there, but I'll know more tomorrow!"
Dawn Cerrone concluded the night by thanking the alumni for coming out to play, and thanked the spectators for their excellent cheering job! She hopes to see an even larger turnout next year. It was a good time had by all!
[The women were represented by: OB Women's Gold: Heather Koines, Brittany Ranaldo, Precious Harmon, Tracey Scaramuzzo-O'Neil, Maria Barbaccia, KC Wright, Erin Egan, Leslie Panagot, Kate Applequist, Coach Lauren Egan. The OB Women's Purple: were Kelly Brandt, Coach Karen Testa, Coach Ashley Ranaldo-Lang, Kristen Egan, Anja Hermann, Kristen Serikstad, Sharon Knox, Tillie Mirman, and Alejandra Huerfano.
[The OBHS Men's alumni were: OB Men's Purple: Bryan Van Cott, Pat Linden, Paul Murcott, Steve Mattucks, John LoRusso, John Neilly, Gregory Hoesl, Dustin Abbate, Brian Giraldi, Noel Grant; Paul Longo, Kenin Soltren, Brandon Perez, Manny Harmon, Julius Coston. The OB Men's Gold included: Casey Neilly, Ben Asher, Scott Applequist, Brian Tiyaloglu, Nick Capozzo, Jason Shoemaker, Richie Carames, Shane Soltren, Kurt LeBright, Dan Kane, Coach Charles Durrant, Rafael Cornelieus, Ron Ranaldo, Ryan Piper.]