Football: Amity Keeps North Haven On Its Toes Til The Bitter End — Best Spartans Team In A Decade

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Nov 222018

Back on October 13, I wrote the following:

“The Amity Spartans football team hasn’t gotten, nor earned much credit for several years, but now, under the leadership of new Head Coach Craig Bruno and Asst. Coach John Johnson, the boys are more than impressive this year.”

Throughout the season, I reminded readers not to underestimate the Spartans Football Team, as they were working on the best season in more than a decade.

Amity went onto Vanacore Field at North Haven High School for the traditional Thanksgiving Day rivalry game with a 5-4 record against the Indians with its 7-2 record.

Even though North Haven has crushed many of its opponents this season, I had a feeling that the 2018 Spartans would give them a run for their money. And although I can’t write a decent sports story, or define a particular play, I was right about this year’s team.

Amity showed its true spirit just minutes into the game when Michael Young ran 77-yards weaving and dodging the Indians best defensive players to make the first touchdown of the game, certainly stunning North Haven fans and players. Joe Digello’s 2-point rush gave the Spartans an 8-0 lead.

North Haven struck right back with Devan Brockamer’s 32-yard run TD, extra point failed 8-6, Amity.

At the end of the first quarter, the Indians held a 4 point lead 12-8.

In the second quarter, North Haven’s Shamus Meehan scored a touchdown and Brockamer’s rush added 2 extra points as well, bringing their lead to 20-8.

Then, with no time on the clock, Michael Young scored another touchdown, but the extra point was no good, bringing the halftime score to 20-14 – North Haven.

There was a lot of back and forth in the third quarter, but both teams’ defense was doing their jobs until the end of the quarter when North Haven added another 8 points, credited to Brockamer pushing their lead to 28-14.

Amity’s Nico Semmonella made a 14-yard touchdown, but the rush failed, bringing the score to 20-28 with 7:20 left

With just 3:29 remaining, Semmonella scored a 16-yard touchdown, again the rush failed- bringing the score to a nail-biting 28-26.

Amity had a first and goal at the 7-yard line with 1:30 to go in the game. The Spartans had a couple of opportunities to tie or win the game but, it wasn’t meant to be.



 AMITY                    8  6  0  12  –  26

NORTH HAVEN  12  8  8   0  –  28

I am so proud of the Spartans and grateful to their coaches for leading them this far. We had a great time watching you boys play and admire your integrity and the respect you showed other players on the field throughout the season.

To this year’s 10 seniors: Michael Young, Jacob Lettick, Daniel Beckwith, Gabriel Lipsitz, Andrew Kimball, Brendan Messina, Brenna Dimauro, Ryan Biagetti, Justin Griffin, and James Van Hise, thank you for all you’ve done this year to put the Spartans on the map.

To the fans, remember, next year, we will still have a lot of talent out there on the field when this year’s juniors are next year’s 12th graders leading the team. Among them are: Joseph Digello, James Laubstein, Nico Semmonella, Abyan Nawaz, Andrew Gnidula, Jake Forchetti, Daniel Cavanagh, Aedan Loynsky. With these players and 10 other juniors, along with the 15 remaining underclassmen and any other talent that may be recruited, I think we’ll be in good hands for quite a while.





What Is Thanksgiving Without High School Football? More Time For Family

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Nov 202018

High Schools Across the state are canceling their traditional Thanksgiving Day Football Games due to the subfreezing temperature forecast.

Although some people may be disappointed in the news, I, for one am relieved that I’ll be able to stay for the entire game on Wednesday evening when it will be played in 40+ degree weather, rather than shivering through a couple of quarters on a frigid Thursday morning and being forced to leave because my fingers and toes would feel like they’re going to fall off.

What does it mean for everyone who planned on going to the game on Thursday morning? Well, our Spartans will be able to play their best and we won’t have to worry about Kim, the trainer, having to treat frozen extremities while these athletes battle it out on the field.

Also, it will give families more quality time together, and perhaps time to think about what they are grateful for.

Thanksgiving Day games are tradition, and I wouldn’t want to see it changed every year, but under the circumstances, I think that the decision to switch it to Wednesday evening is wise and in the best interest of the fans and players alike.

Enjoy your Thanksgiving everyone. And to our Amity Spartans, you guys have been awesome this year, and believe it or not, I think you can hold your own against North Haven. Sure, they only lost 2 games (Fairfield Prep and Shelton and their closest game was by one point against West Haven).

But You Gentlemen had the best season of any Spartan Football team in 11 years. No matter what happens we are proud of you and all you’ve accomplished in 2018. We are Thankful for you. Do your best, it’s all we can ask. Have fun and enjoy your last game together.

Girls Swimming and Diving: Amity Splashes Past North Haven On Friday

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Oct 122018

The Lady Spartans Swimming and Diving team was on the road in North Haven on Friday.

Although Amity only won four of the 12 events, the girls outscored the home team by 11 points and defeated North Haven 97.5 to 86.5.

Amity’s Winning Events

200 Free: Julia Snow, 2:03.77

100 Fly: Katie O’Connor, 1:00.11

100 Free: Molly Cox, 57.94

100 Back: Molly Cox, 1:03.04

North Haven’s Winning Events

200 Medley Relay: Nebor, Gambardella, Jooss, Bergin 1:53.54

200 IM:  Gambardella, 2:12.89

50 Free: Bergin, 24.54

Diving: Santacroce, 233.70

500 Free: Bergin, 5:20.39

200 Free Relay: Gambardella, Jooss, Nebor, Bergin 1:44.20

100 Breast: Gambardella, 1:07.62

400 Free Relay: Vogel, Laborde T, Faulkner, Regan 4:14.98

Records: Amity 9-1 / North Haven 6-3

Boys Swimming and Diving: A Victory on Senior Night

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Feb 072017

The Amity Spartans Swimming and Diving team hosted the North Haven Indians in Orange on Monday night.

Prior to the meet, Amity’s six senior members — Zac Babbitz, Jethin Gowda, Matthew Hill, Daniel Madsen, Sergey Savelyev, and Sakkarin Vilay — were recognized for their contributions over the years and for their future endeavors.

The Spartans defeated the Indians 98-73.

There are only three more regular season meets, all of which are on the road this month.

Amity’s winning events

200 Medley Relay: A- 1:49.90 Andy Yu, Colin Roy, Sergey Savelyev, Uranik Klobucishta

200 Freestyle: A- 1:51.17 Kevin Yanagisawa

50 Freestyle: A-24.18 Zac Babbitz

100 Butterfly: A- 58.15 Colin Roy

100 Freestyle: A- 52.73 Tyler Roy

500 Freestyle: A- 5:04.30 Sergey Savelyev

200 Freestyle Relay: A- 1:37.97 Tyler Roy, Jared Sullivan, Sergey Savelyev, Uranik Klobucishta

100 Backstroke: A- 1:03.31 Colin Roy

North Haven’s winning events

200 Ind. Medley: NH- 2:18.95 Will McCleery

Dive: NH- 19.10 Kyle Duby

100 Breaststroke: NH- 1:13.37 Carl Frunzio

400 Freestyle Relay: NH- 3:58.58 John Stoeffler, Will McCleery, John Hildebrandt, Thomas O’Connor

Records: Amity 6-3, North Haven 3-5


Boys Hockey: How Did Amity Do In The Season Opener?

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Dec 192016

The Amity Spartans Ice Hockey team was away at Northford for its season opener against North Haven on Sunday.

During earlier scrimmage games, Orange Live noted that the 2016 team was faster and stronger than in past years, they showed those skills again in this game.

Amity came out on top with a 1-0 win.

Both goal tenders had about 30 shots on each. Senior Tyler Johnston got his first shut out of the season (he already had 2 in the first exhibition games).

We look forward to seeing how far the mighty Spartans can go this year.

Steve Conn submitted these photos from the game. 

Amity is wearing its black “away” uniforms.


Colin Hughes (8) races down the ice


Goalie Tyler Johnston (31) deflects a shot.



Boys Hockey: Indians Defeat the Spartans

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Dec 252015

IMG_8349The Amity Spartans Ice Hockey team hosted the North Haven Indians in West Haven on Wednesday, Dec. 23.

The traditionally strong North Haven team took an early lead with Pasquale Liuzzi scoring the first goal at :44 on assists from Josh Back and J.J. Jenson; less than 3 minutes later, Jenson scored off an assist from Mike Gambardella at 2:41; and Corey Reilly ended the first period with a goal off an assist from Back at 8:04.

First period score 3-0 North Haven

In the second period, Jason St. Peter added an unassisted goal at 6:38 and Amity’s Charlie Csejka, also unassisted, put the Spartans on the board at 12:30.

Second period score 4-1 North Haven.

The Indians never looked back in the third period: St. Peter scored on an assist from Kyle Spring and Jamie Montesi at 1:08, and Jenson closed the game with the final goal assisted by C.J. Kenny and Liuzzi at 10:55.

This was a clear 6-1 North Haven victory.


North Haven outshot Amity 35-28.

Amity’s Goalie, Tyler Cold made 30 saves; North Haven goalie Justin Daddio made 27 saves.

Records—Amity 0-2; North Haven 1-2


Field Hockey: Amity Blanks North Haven in Woodbridge

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Oct 222014

IMG_8344On Monday, Oct. 20, the Lady Spartans Field Hockey Team showed the visiting North Haven Indians how it’s done in Woodbridge.

In the first half Cassie Bishop got one past North Haven goalie Rylee Bathrick on an assist from Lauren Duhl.

The second half saw a lot of Amity action with Marissa Mizzone scoring on an assist from Duhl; then Gabby Torrenti had two goals (one on a Duhl assist). Ending the game at 4-0 Amity.

Rylee Bathrick made 4 saves for the Indians; Ashley Powers made 1 save for the Lady Spartans. 

Records — Amity 5-9-1; North Haven 0-11-1


Amity Boys Varsity Ice Hockey Bows to North Haven 7-4 In Season Opener

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Dec 192013

The Spartans celebrate Brett McNeil's first period goal.

The Spartans celebrate Brett McNeil’s first period goal.

The Amity Spartans have 9 seniors and 5 juniors on its 22-man hockey team this year and their experience is enough to make for an exciting season.

On Wednesday, the team hosted North Haven at the Edward L. Bennett Rink in West Haven. Both teams looked strong in the beginning and with just 2:26 left in the first period, the Spartans Senior Brett McNeil (#8) scored the first goal of the season with an assist from Zach Shelnitz (#14)

Less than 1.5 minutes later, North Haven’s Chris Lion, with assists from Phil Gauvin and Tyler Luedee, evened the score before the break.

North Haven came out with a winning attitude and within the first 42 seconds, Cameron Owens scored his first of two goals, with an assist from Mike Tantorski; 4 minutes later, Vin Falsulo, scored his first of three goals, assisted by Gauvin and Lion; then Owens, again assisted by Tantorski, scored his second goal; followed by Falsulo rounding out the second period with his second goal with an assist by Kyle Van Bramer.

After a pressure-filled period, McNeil came through with his second goal with just 56 seconds remaining in the second period, bringing the score to 5-2 North Haven.

The third period saw another quick goal by the Indians, this time Tantorski scored with an assist from Owens in the first 57 seconds after returning to the ice.

Coming on strong, Spartans Captain Keating Seymour  (#23) slapped one in past Indians goalie Andrew Graziano, unassisted; less than a minute later, Seymour was at it again scoring with an assist by co-captain Adam Shea (#5), bringing the score to 6-4.

But Fasulo wanted more and got one by Spartans goalie Brian Mosher (#30) at the end of the third period, sealing the victory 7-4

North Haven 1 4 2 — 7
Amity               1 1 2 — 4

Amity outshot North Haven 32-31

Amity’s Mosher made 24 saves; North Haven’s Graziano had 28 saves.

Records—Amity 0-1; North Haven 1-0


Volleyball: Lady Spartans Defeat North Haven 3-0

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Sep 122013

Senior Amanda Veccio spikes the ball during Wednesday's game against North Haven.

Senior Amanda Veccio spikes the ball during Wednesday’s game against North Haven.

The Amity Lady Spartans volleyball team won the non-conference match against North Haven on Wednesday, Sept. 11 at Amity.

The three games were as follows: 25-14; 25-13; and the final nail-biter 25-23.

The 2013 team, led by captains Kathryn Pisano and Allison Denny shows a lot of promise.

They play hard, and they play well together just as the 2012 team did.


North Haven Indians Cook Amity’s Turkey in Holiday Game; Attolino Presented Laugeni Award

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Nov 232012


David Attolino receives the Thomas Laugeni Award


Orange Live Sports Writer

Sponsored by Stop & Go Transmission and Auto Center, Bridgeport

Jalon White’s glorious football career has come to an end. North Haven’s 5-foot 10-inch senior speedster wrote the final chapter to his outstanding scholastic grid career Thursday morning at Vanacore Field in North Haven.  He shredded the Amity defense for 293 yards and three touchdowns on 29 carries and also tossed an 18 yard pass to lead his Indians to a 32-7 Southern Connecticut Conference inter-divisional victory.

Following the victory, White was named his team’s Outstanding Offensive Player of the Game. With this win, North Haven ended its season with a 7-3 record. It was the fourth Thanksgiving Day loss in a row for the Spartans, who still lead the series 9-7-1. They closed out their season at 4-6.White’s spectacular senior statistics show that he gained 1837 yards, scored  25 touchdowns on 218 carries, and recorded 150 points.

Looking back at the first half, which saw each team score as the result of a first period turnover, and his Spartans take a 7-6 lead into the locker room, Amity Coach Bert Mozealous said, “We played hard and took advantage of North Haven mistakes. In addition, we did a great job of playing assignment football.”

The Spartans “limited” White to 122 yards and one score on 14 carries, but his fumbled punt led to the Spartan touchdown that gave them their one point lead. Amity was fortunate to escape the first half with that slim lead. On the final two plays of the first half, White dashed for gains of 21 and 33 yards but time ran out with the Indians camped on the Amity 7-yard line.

The entire third quarter belonged to White and his Indian teammates. His runs of 17 and 15 yards got North Haven to the visitors 3. White’s three yard spring into the end zone with 10 minutes, 19 seconds to go gave North Haven a 12-7 lead.  On its next possession, Amity went nowhere and punted the ball away on fourth down.  Setting up shop at their own 42, the Indians gave the ball to White who raced around his left side and went untouched for 55 yards before being rolled out of bounds at the Spartan 3-yard line. Two plays later, White added a one-yard touchdown that made it 18-7 with 7:56 still left in the third quarter.

Amity got the ball back and moved it to its own 49. On fourth down and needing four yards for a first down, Mozealous gambled and went for it rather than punting. That move soon backfired as David Ryan’s pass fell incomplete. Ignited by Ethan Suraci’s 11 yard run for a first down and White’s 14 yard scamper for another first down, North Haven needed eight plays to cover 51 yards. Junior Jim Halloran made it 25-7 as he cashed in on an eight yard TD with 2:22 to go.

On the first play after the North Haven touchdown, Dave Attolino ripped through the center of the North Haven defense for 54 yards and a first down at the Indian 19. Four plays netted only six yards and the ball went back to North Haven on downs. Early in the fourth quarter, Matt Attolino blocked an Indian punt, giving his team the ball at the Indian 35. On fourth down and less than a yard to go for a first down, Dave Attolino was stacked up at the line of scrimmage.

According to Mozealous, “We needed only a yard for the first down but our best back couldn’t get the job done.”

He added, “In the second half, they were able to establish and control the offensive line of scrimmage. We didn’t get outside quickly enough to stop the sweep like we did in the first half. I think having to constantly be chasing White tired us out and we aren’t deep enough to give breaks to our defensive guys. In addition to our lack of depth, we had linebacker injuries and some costly breakdowns on defense.

Following White’s 28 yard dash, his 18 yard flip to Carlos Martinez, and Suraci’s20 yard gallop, the Indians were on the Amity 10. Two plays later Suraci capped the 74 yard-six play drive with his five yard touchdown that extended his team’s lead to 32-7 with 4:23 left in the game.

“We had our chances but they did a great job of stopping us in the third and fourth quarters,” said Mozealous. “We were inconsistent up front, but credit North Haven. They played great second half defense and stopped us in key situations. We were still in the game at 18-7 but once they scored again, they forced us to throw the ball and after that, we were cooked.”

Amity’s first possession of the game ended when Indians’ linebacker Kevin Brennan intercepted a Semmonella pass at the hosts’ 34. Following a 20 yard run by White, Halloran added 12 yards and a first down at the Amity 28. Quincy Pecora moved the ball 17 yards closer and then White cashed in on a four yard run with 6:54 left in the first period, but the score remained 6-0 as the Indians missed the PAT.

Later in the first quarter, White let a fourth down punt slip out of his hands and Matt Attolino recovered the loose ball at the Indian 24. With Dave Attolino leading the way and capping the eight play march, with a three yard TD,  Amity took a 7-6 lead on Lyle Luth’s conversion kick with 16.6 seconds left in the opening session.

While his scholastic career ended on a sour note, Dave Attolino still had an outstanding game, picking up 159 yards and a touchdown on 25 carries. He racked up 1114 yards, 13 scores, and 78 points on 191 carries. At the end of the game, he was named the recipient of the annual Thomas Laugeni Award for being his team’s top player of the game.

Mozealous added, “Dave’s a tough kid and had a great game today.”

Clearly savoring his team’s fourth win in a row over Amity, North Haven’s veteran coach, Anthony Sagnella said, “Going into the game, I thought it was going to be a line of scrimmage battle. During the first half, I thought both lines executed very well, but we took control early in the second half and gained momentum as we went on. Amity did a good job of getting to Jalon in the first half, but we also killed ourselves with penalties in the first half. Finally, we came around in the second half. Our guys rose to the occasion and did a great job in the second half.”

During the first half, the Spartans ran 40 offensive plays compared to only 18 for the winners. The second half told a different story as North Haven held a 34-22 edge in plays. The Indians also held the edge in virtually all offensive categories:  first downs (21-nine), rushing yards (432-209) and total offense (464-242). Amity completed only three of 13 passes for 33 yards and had two throws intercepted. North Haven was good on two of its three throws with one picked off.