All posts by Kate Snyder

Beaton Brings Family History to Role as Head Football Coach

Coach B, ready for a high five

By Matt Liebowitz

So much of what makes Coach Tommy Beaton tick, and what makes his players follow his lead, is evident in a quiet moment amidst chaos: Coach B standing in the gym during a school-wide event, his infant daughter asleep, her head in the crook of his elbow. Around him, students shuffle, scream, dance, but Coach B remains still. His daughter stays asleep.

As Williston Northampton’s new Head Football Coach, Tommy Beaton projects a steadfast, quiet confidence; he’s commanding, but not in the scream-in-your-face way many top-tier coaches are portrayed in movies. This reserved power is what makes Coach B so effective.

“You know your guys get it when you don’t have to say ‘hustle,’ they just hustle,” Beaton said. Continue reading

At Williston, Sportsmanship is Key

At a recent assembly, Athletic Director Mark Conroy discussed the code of ethics that all Williston teammates (and spectators!) must adhere to. Williston abides by the rules established by NEPSAC, the New England Preparatory School Athletic Council, an association of nearly 170 independent schools throughout New England.

“Fair or unfair, a school’s good name or reputation is often times derived from its athletic program because athletics are played on SUCH a public stage,” he said. Williston will compete in over 600 games during the year traveling throughout the northeast and hosting schools from all corners of New England and beyond. “Because of this,” he said, “I believe that our students have both a privilege and a responsibility to represent our school with the highest ideals of sportsmanship when our they pull on that blue and green jersey every Wednesday and Saturday afternoon.” Continue reading

Athletes of the Week, September 23

Jacob Goodman ’19

Jacob has started off the year strong for the boys varsity soccer team. On Saturday, he scored two clutch goals in a 5-3 win over Canterbury to lead the Wildcats to a win in their season opener. In his first start of his varsity career, Jacob created numerous dangerous scoring opportunities on counter-attacks against a physical and talented Canterbury defense. His tireless work rate put Canterbury’s defense under pressure throughout the game. Continue reading

Two Williston Lacrosse Players Earn All-American Honors

Two student-athletes in Williston’s lacrosse program earned All-American honors earlier this year. Coaches in the New England Secondary School Lacrosse Association recognized Nick Garofano ’16 of Boys Varsity Lacrosse, and Meg Szawlowski ’16 of Girls Varsity Lacrosse as top players in their respective leagues.

Nick Garofano '16
Nick Garofano ’16

Garofano of Yorktown Heights, N.Y., who will continue his lacrosse career at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point next year, is Williston’s all-time assist leader (88), and second in school history in goals (111) and points (199). A captain of the 2016 lacrosse team, Garofano led the team with 34 goals and 19 assists in just 16 games. In addition to being an All-American, Garofano was named to the Western New England Division II All-League team. Garofano also finished his career on Williston’s football team as one of the most accomplished athletes in school history. As a running back, he holds the record for single-season rushing yards (1,123) and career rushing yards (2,214). This past spring, Garofano’s achievements were recognized when he was given the Dr. Frank L. Boyden Award at the National Football Foundation and Hall of Fame scholar-athlete dinner. The award is given to the top prep school scholar-athlete in western Massachusetts. Continue reading

Tori Palumbo ’18 Chosen to Compete in Junior Olympics

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The Girls Varsity Field Hockey team after its November 2015 win.

Tori Palumbo ’18 is one of 128 field hockey players nationwide chosen to play in the prestigious Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) Junior Olympic Games in Houston, Texas, in August.

The AAU Junior Olympic Games are known as the largest multi-sport event for youth in the United States, drawing more than 12,000 athletes each year to compete in 24 sports. USA Field Hockey selects eight teams made up of the top athletes 16 and under from around the country.

Palumbo, who will be returning to campus this fall as a junior and one of three captains of the Varsity Field Hockey team, was crucial to the Wildcats’ November 2015 NEPSAC Class B Tournament win. Continue reading

Jared Freilich ’16 Signs with the University of Kentucky

Jared Freilich '16, center, with his parents, Lisa and Andrew
Jared Freilich ’16, center, with his parents, Lisa and Andrew

Jared Freilich of Worcester, a starting pitcher on Williston Northampton School’s Varsity Baseball team for one year, has signed a letter of intent to play for the University of Kentucky this fall.

“Jared worked very hard in the fall and winter preparing for the season,” said his coach, Matthew Sawyer. Freilich had a back injury several years ago and needed to condition to prepare for play. “Then, he worked at his mechanics and now uses his 6’5” frame very well,” Sawyer added. Continue reading

Williston Athletes Finish Strong

27252799846_5eea5a5137_zAs the school year closes, we’ve been reflecting on what a fine year it’s been for Williston athletics. Five seniors were recently singled out for their accomplishments at the Athletic Awards on May 27 (see photos) and a host of them are headed to colleges where they will continue to compete.  We’ve had senior athletes singled out for honors, including Nick Garofano and Michael Dereus. We had champion softball and tennis teams (the softball team was interviewed on Springfield radio!). That’s what we call finishing strong! Go Wildcats!

Signings to Bring Three Student Athletes College Play

Mark Wilson, Kyle Doucette, and Michael Dereus all signed with Division I college sports programs.
Mark Wilson, Kyle Doucette, and Michael Dereus signed with Division I college sports programs.

Three Williston athletes signed letters of intent to play sports at the college level on April 28 at an event in the Dodge Room of the Reed Campus Center. Michael Dereus ’16, who played football and ran track for two years, will attend Georgetown University. Kyle Doucette ’16 played basketball at Williston for two years and will attend LIU Post. Mark Wilson ’16 played football as a postgraduate and will attend Central Connecticut State University.

Michael Dereus played wide receiver for the Wildcats, and runs track. His football coach, Mark Conroy, praised both Dereus’ quickness at the game, and his character off the gridiron.

“Mike’s success on the field and in the classroom is a result of his dogged determination to take full advantage of his opportunities,” he said. “As a football player, Mike is blessed with exceptional natural gifts but what has allowed him to achieve at such a high level is his exceptional work ethic and desire to improve. Mike’s teachers and coaches all laud his outstanding work ethic and coach-ability.”

For Dereus, motivation to succeed came from the thrill of scoring a touchdown. “It feels like you are on top of the world,” he said. And success, indeed, arrived after he put in the time and effort. “Repetition is more important than pure ability,” he noted. His sister, Ruth Dereus, pointed to his determination, “Michael never allowed any barriers, whether it be on the field, in the classroom, or in his personal life, to distract him from his goals. I’ve seen the various transferable skills Michael acquired from the football field that he applied in life: determination, sportsmanship, teamwork, leadership, resilience, tenacity, and many more!”

Dereus recently set school records in both the 100- and 200-meter races, and for most touchdown receptions. He was named one of the top receivers in NEPSAC when he made the All-NEPSAC team this fall.

Kyle Doucette’s willingness to work hard at improving his game has brought him success on the basketball court. The center excels at defending the hoop—and he’s versatile, according to his coach, Michael Shelton.

“His ability to cover every position was vital to our success in the championship game,” Shelton said. “Offensively he is great around the basket and has improved his shooting over the last two years.”

Rich Doucette, Kyle’s father, added that his son is the “consummate team player. He’s never had a technical foul.” He added that since Kyle began playing the sport at age 9, he’s “absolutely loved basketball.” And at Williston, Kyle said, “I learned to push to my absolute best ability every play and never give up.”

Mark Wilson said football became a way for him to shake off the academic rigors of a postgraduate year. According to his mother, Sue Wilson, Mark has always had his “eye on the prize.” Since he came to Williston, she said, she’s seen his confidence and motivation grow.

“He has the passion and the will to go the distance,” she said. His coach, Mark Conroy, agreed. “He has great football instincts and could always be counted on to be one of our most consistent defensive playmakers,” Conroy said. “He loves football and plays the game with great passion.”

Congratulations, Mike, Kyle, and Mark!

See our Flickr page for more photos!

Two Senior Athletes Sign Letters of Intent

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Meg Rickard and Hannah Touzos

Surrounded by family, coaches, and teammates, two Williston Northampton School seniors signed letters of intent for Division I ice hockey teams on April15. Meg Rickard has agreed to play for the Providence College Friars and Hannah Touzos signed on to play for the University of New Hampshire Wildcats.

Scoring the game-winning goal against a fabled foe earned Rickard a special place in the hearts of her ice hockey teammates, and is illustrative of her role on the team, according to her coach, Girls Varsity Hockey Head Coach Christa Talbot-Syfu. “Meg has stepped up in important moments when she’s been needed,” Talbot-Syfu said.

The forward led the team in points scored this year, her strongest in her three years at Williston Northampton School. “She finished strong,” Talbot-Syfu said. “She’s talented, skilled, and presents an offensive threat.”

MR and parents
Meg Rickard and her father Jim and mother Elizabeth

Rickard, who is from Coventry, RI, starting playing hockey when she was 8—older than many of her teammates. As a child, she watched her brother and father, who played college hockey, and absorbed their love of the game. “She started late but she was filling up the net from the get go,” said Jim Rickard, her father. As a child and early in her hockey career she practiced at the rink at Providence College.

“Growing up I was always an offensive type player who loved to score goals and that was it,” she said. “Coming to Williston, Coach Talbot was on me every day to be a more consistent player in all three zones. For me, the biggest lesson I have learned from Coach Talbot would be not to take anything for granted and always try to play for something bigger than myself. That motivated me to be my best every day.”

Jim Rickard took note of her progression on the rink. “We’re so proud of her and what she’s managed to learn over the last three years at Williston.”

Meg Rickard will be joining her Williston classmate Rachel Rockwell ’16 on the ice at Providence College. “I am so excited to be going to school I grew up around. My parents and grandparents, who have helped me get to where I am today, can come see as many games as they want.”

Hannah and family
Hannah Touzos and her family: sister Jackie, mother Karen, father Rich, and brother Daniel

Hannah Touzos ’16 started skating at about 3 years old in the backyard rink at her home in Foxboro, MA. “She really enjoyed skating and whacking away at the puck and people,” according to her father, Rich Touzos.

Those whacking skills, honed throughout the years, have paid off. Hannah Touzos, a forward, will continue to be a Wildcat—but at the college level at UNH .

“Hannah is a worker. She’s a very smart player, a very good forechecker,” said Talbot-Syfu. “She’s a tremendous penalty killer.”

Touzos has played hockey all four years at Williston. Before that she played in youth leagues in eastern Massachusetts, where she competed in two national tournaments.

“When Hannah joined the Williston Girls Varsity Team in her freshman year we knew she had a uphill battle for playing time,” Rich Touzos said. “This made Hannah’s competitiveness shine. She worked extra hard in the off-season to return in her second season as a stronger and improved player.

“In her third year Hannah finally was able to compete and play a major role in the success of the team,” he said. “We were so proud of her grit and determination to help her team.”

Bottom line: Touzos earned her chance to play. “She worked hard and her determination to play at the highest level never left her sight,” Touzos said. “She wanted it and she accomplished her goal. We are so proud.”

More photos are on Flickr.

Congratulations, Meg and Hannah!