Category Archives: Personal Results

Wildcat Swimmers and Divers Dominate Championships

swim team champsThe girls swimming and diving team traveled to Bristol, Rhode Island, this weekend and won their second straight NEPSAC Division 2 Swimming and Diving Championship with a meet-record 451 points, well ahead of second-place Dana Hall, which finished with 325.5 points.

The Wildcats dominated the meet from start to finish and set a number of meet and school records along the way. The 200 Medley Relay team of Sally Alrutz ’19 (Springfield), Natalie Aquadro ’17 (Northampton), Maya Soley ’18 (South Hadley), and Anabelle Farnham ’18 (Amherst) led off the meet with a victory, paced by the fastest 50 breaststroke split of the meet by Aquadro, to set a new school and meet record with a time of 1:52.09. Continue reading

At the Top of Her Game

Morgan Fisher '16 Shares Her Strategies To Achieve Elite Performance

morgan fisherMorgan Fisher ’16, Williston’s girls varsity hockey goalie, achieved a major breakthrough in her sport when she was invited to play with the U-18 National Team in Lake Placid, New York, this past summer.  She competed against some of the best hockey players on the planet in her age group, and she learned a lot of important lessons along the way. In this interview she shares some of her most memorable experiences from the U.S.A. camp, and her strategies to achieve elite performance.

When did you start playing hockey, and when did it become an important part of your life?

My dad taught me to skate when I was five. He would take me to open ice sessions before school. From there I started playing hockey competitively with the boys team in my town, which was really cool because it gave me a competitive feeling.  The boys game was up-tempo so I had to be that much more aware in net. That experience helped me a lot when I transitioned to the girls’ game.

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Athletic Awards for Spring 2015

v-softball-vs-deerfield-2015_17299056692_oOn Friday, May 22, Director of Athletics Mark Conroy held the annual spring athletic assembly to recognize the outstanding athletic achievements of the past season and to particularly honor the contributions by members of the Class of 2015. The assembly, which kicks off a weekend of end-of-year ceremonies, culminated in a slideshow of the year in Wildcat Athletics.

Spring highlights included such individual achievements as junior rider Lacey Gillis qualifying for the Regionals; freshman pitcher Jordan Strum throwing a perfect game (facing the minimum of 21 batters in 7 innings) during a softball game against Cushing Academy; and Mike Dereus breaking the school record in the 200 with a time of 21.8 in boys track. Sophomore Alexis Ryan won the NEPSAC discus event with a throw of 106’8”.

Among the team achievements, girls crew placed third in the second varsity four finals of the Lowell Invitational Regatta, and Ultimate won the Northfield Mount Hermon Tournament and the Spirit Award at the Amherst Invitational. Girls varsity tennis had  a first-place finish at the Suffield Invitational Tournament, while girls golf finished the season with the second-best overall record for the team in the 13-year history of Williston’s program. Girls softball advanced to the Class A Tournament, the girls water polo program had such first as a winning record and a NEPSAC playoff berth, and the the varsity girls lacrosse team had another outstanding season, finishing with a 12-2 record.

track-at-new-englands-2015_17850471042_oThe varsity boys lacrosse team, led by Coaches Syfu, Dietrich and Johnson, enjoyed their finest season in 16 years, with a record of 12-3. The boys went 6-0 against Western New England Division II foes to win the league championship for the first time in several years. Co-head Coaches Syfu and Dietrich were recognized with the Division II Mike Fuller Coach of the Year award.

The 4 x 100 relay team of sophomore Rebecca Sundel, junior Sideya Dill, and seniors Lena Gandevia and Gabby Thomas broke the school record with a time of 49.76 on the way to becoming NEPSAC champions for the second consecutive year.

Mr. Conroy singled out senior Gabby Thomas in his remarks, noting “I don’t think it is overstating that Gabby enjoyed one of the finest performances by a track and field athlete in recent NEPSAC history and perhaps all of Williston’s track and field history.” Ms. Thomas capped off an extraordinary Williston career by winning four gold medals at the New England Championships, matching an equally impressive performance last year.  In addition to a gold in the 4 x 100, Ms. Thomas won the 200 meters,  and a gold medal in the Triple Jump (where she setting another NEPSAC meet record of 39’11”). Her best triple jump leap this spring was 40’7”, the fifth-best jump in the country this spring.

Ms. Thomas also won the 100 meter title for the fifth year in a row, breaking her own NEPSAC record with a time of 11.71. This time puts her in the top 20 100 meter times run in the country this spring. For the second consecutive year, Gabby was named the MVP of the NEPSAC championship meet. In recognition of all of her accomplishments at Williston, Mr. Conroy presented her with a special plaque. Ms. Thomas also received a Blanket Award and the Alumnae Bowl, given each year to the top girl in the school’s athletic program.

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Athletic Awards Announcement: Winter 2015

16101385964_53f3513003_zThis was a historically strong winter for the Williston Northampton School, with teams winning championships, setting records, and securing personal best times. On Wednesday, March 25, the Williston community came together to honor all of these amazing achievements, and to also recognize the team award winners.

Winter highlights included the boys varsity basketball team securing the NEPSAC Class A tournament title. Coach Mike Shelton was named the NEPSAC Class A Coach of the Year and Ryan Richmond ’15 was named outstanding player of the tournament. Boys skiing also won their NEPSAC championship, securing the title for the first time in 22 years.

The swimming and diving teams had incredible record-breaking seasons. On the boys’ side, David Fitch won a NEPSAC title in the 100 yard freestyle and finished second in the 50 yard freestyle (with the third-fastest time in school history). Gabriella Mercier what was described as the single greatest season in Williston diving history, breaking the school’s dual meet diving record and championship diving record. Sally Alrutz, Natalie Aquadro, Jasmin Movassaghi, and Emily Yeager broke a 15-year old record in the 200 medley relay; Ms. Alrutz, Ms. Aquadro, Ms. Yeager and Anabelle Farnham broke the 400 freestyle relay record by three seconds; and Ms. Alrutz  re-broke her own record in the 100-yard backstroke. She also broke a record in the 100-yard butterfly, and set a new NEPSAC Division 2 record on her way to winning her first NEPSAC title.

ski individualsWrestler and senior captain Sam Atkin had a third place finish at New England’s (after being a sixth seed), while boys squash took second place at the Class C New England Tournament with a first-place overall for Loren Po ’15. Girls squash took third place at the NEPSAC Class C Championship, with senior Hannah King winning three matches to take first place in the #7 flight. The girls also received the tournament’s Sportsmanship Award.

“Wow, what an incredible winter season it was for Williston Wildcat athletics! As I watched our teams compete all winter, I could not have been prouder,” said Director of Athletics Mark Conroy during the special athletic assembly.

“All of our teams at every level played hard, played together, were very well coached, and represented Williston with tremendous sportsmanship,” Mr. Conroy continued. “I also want to say that I am extremely proud of how we continue to support our teams—it is always with a wonderful combination of enthusiastic school spirit AND great respect for the performance of our opponents!”

“Now, the fact that we won more than our share of games this winter was just icing on the cake for me!” he said. “And, make no mistake about it, we did win more than our share of games in making a fair amount of Williston history.”

Mr. Conroy then gave the brief summaries of all nine winter programs.

Jump to the section on:
Boys Squash
Girls Squash
Boys Swimming and Diving
Girls Swimming and Diving
Boys Hockey
Girls Hockey
Girls Ski Team
Boys Ski Team
Girls Basketball
Boys Basketball

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Swimmers Set New Records at NEPSAC

By Coach Koritkoski

Photo by David Koritkoski of the award winning relay teams from the Bud Erich Invitational on February 28.
Photo by David Koritkoski of the award-winning relay teams from the Bud Erich Invitational on February 28.

The boys and girls swim teams competed in the NEPSAC Division II Swimming and Diving Championships at Roger Williams University on Saturday, March 7, 2015 and had a very successful day.  The girls finished in second place behind three-time defending champions Dana Hall, and the boys finished in sixth place.

The girls 200 Medley Relay team of Sally Alrutz, Natalie Aquadro, Jasmin Movassaghi, and Emily Yeager opened up the meet in style, winning the event while setting a new school record. They also broke the previous NEPSAC Division II record by over three seconds, with a blazing fast time of 1:52.88.

Eighth grader Sally Alrutz (Springfield) put forward an incredible individual performance, winning a NEPSAC title, setting a Division II record, and breaking a 15-year old school record in the 100 butterfly with a time of 59.12.  She followed up that swim with a second place finish—and a new school record—in the 100 backstroke with a time of 58.90.

Sophomore Natalie Aquadro (Northampton) took home a pair of second-place finishes in the 200 Individual Medley (2:15.74) and 100 breaststroke (1:09.19), and had the second fastest time in the event in school history. Sophomore Emily Yeager placed third in the 200 Freestyle (2:0287) and fourth in the 100 backstroke (1:03.17). Freshman Anabelle Farnham (Amherst) placed third in the 50 freestyle with a time of 25.83 and finished fourth in the 100 freestyle with a time of 55.37.

On the boys side, the 200 and 400 freestyle relay teams of David Fitch, Calvin Frye, Alex Li, and Chris Lansill put together impressive performances, finishing fifth in both events with times that rank them in the top 15 in school history.

Sophomore David Fitch (Conway) swam two incredible races. He won his first NEPSAC title in the 100 freestyle with a time of 48.71 and finished second in the 50 freestyle with a time of 22.15.

Junior Calvin Frye (West Springfield) placed third in the 200 freestyle (1:52.17) and eighth in the 100 freestyle (51.69).   Junior Chris Lansill finished off a great season, winning the consolation final of the 100 backstroke finishing 9th with a career best time of 1:02.90 and anchored the 200 Medley Relay team with a season best time of 23.83.

Senior captain Alex Li (Longmeadow) capped off a great Williston career, finishing sixth in the 100 butterfly (59.84) and fourth in the 100 backstroke (1:00.32).


Noah te Velde ’19 Ranks 25th Nationally in Saber Fencing

fencingAfter placing fifth in a recent tournament, Noah te Velde ’19 was ranked 25th nationally for saber fencing in his age group (Y12MS) by USA Fencing. While saber fencing is not an official school sport, his mother, T. Susan Chang, said in an email that Williston has been very supportive of her son’s pursuit an outside program.

“We see it as a big deal—regardless of the ranking—because he’s worked so hard to improve his fencing these past few years and had to learn some tough lessons about defeat and perseverance along the way,” Ms. Chang wrote. “The hope is that those lessons translate to other areas of his life as well, in time, and we’re very grateful to Williston for having provided such a rich environment for that to happen.”

Thomas ’15 Sets New 100 Meter Dash Record

Sophomore Gabby Thomas had another outstanding day at the NEPSAC Division II Track and Field Championships held at Williston Northampton School this past Saturday. Her top finishes earned her All New England recognition in four events, and included a record-setting run.

In the 100 meter dash, she earned her third straight NEPSAC title with a final time of 12.06, breaking the NEPSAC Division II record of 12.31. Hers was equal to the fastest electronically timed 100 meter dash in a NEPSAC championship meet at any level.

Ms. Thomas also had a second place finish in the triple jump with a jump of 36’ 6” and a fourth place finish in the long jump with a leap of 17′ 5″.  Along with teammates Rachel Rockwell ’16, Jen Carellas ’15,  and Lena Gandevia ’15  Ms. Thomas anchored the 4 x 100 relay team that finished in third place.

Ms. Thomas is Williston’s record holder for the long jump, triple jump, and 100 meter dash.

Read the article about her achievement on

Aptowitz Represents Williston at All Star Game

Senior softball captain Laura Aptowitz represented Williston on Sunday, May 5th in the annual Western New England Prep All Star game held at Loomis Chaffee School.  Ms. Aptowitz, a four-year starter, went 2-for-3 with a double in helping her team to victory.

As an athlete, Ms. Aptowitz has certainly left her mark at Williston where she has earned 12 varsity letters as a three sport athlete in field hockey, ice hockey and softball.  A slick fielding shortstop in softball, Ms. Aptowitz has had a terrific senior season at the plate, hitting .472 with 5 doubles and 2 home runs.  Coach Molly Ward says that Laura “has been a great pleasure to coach.”

Ms. Aptowitz has been recruited to play softball next year at Union College.  Congratulations, Laura!

Athletic Hall of Fame: Coach Rick Francis

Coach Rick Francis was the kind of person who not only worked tirelessly with athletes on the football field and basketball court, but served as a mentor off the field as well.

“He was always quick with a smile, a hearty hello, and a word of encouragement,” wrote Peter Kostos ’87 in his nomination. “He was also, at least to many of us who played for him, a surrogate parent, somebody we could trust and come to with a problem, concern, or question that we felt we could not ask somebody else.”

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Athletic Hall of Fame: Coach Ray Brown ’55

Coach Ray Brown, who was known to heft more than a few victory cups in his time, has been inducted into not one, but two halls of fame. Both were nods to his long, winning records as the boys soccer coach (1965-1993) and girls basketball coach (1976-2002).

After attending Williston Academy as a post-graduate with the Class of 1955, Coach Brown played soccer and basketball at Kenyon College. He returned to Williston in 1959, where he would remain for the next 43 years.

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