Athletes of the Week
Fall 2 - 3/26-3/31/21
During our first game of the season against JFK, Jenna Kersten only missed one of the serves she had taken. Jenna set for the first two matches and played outside hitter during the third match. While playing outside hitter, she had 3 kills.
-Victoria Link, Varsity Girls Volleyball Coach
Emma Schloss is new to the cheer team and the sport of cheerleading. She has learned all kinds of new skills in a very short amount of time and has been nothing but impressive. Emma has quickly become a great asset to our team because of her newfound basing skills and very positive attitude. She is always asking questions and pushing herself to learn more. It is very clear that Emma puts in a lot of work outside of practice. She has quickly picked up on all the sidelines, jumps, tumbling, and stunts. I'm glad Emma decided to join the team for her senior year!
-Shannon Retzlaff, Varsity Cheerleading Coach
Robert Dudley’s performance really stood out on the lanes in the match against Grand Island. He had the highest two games of the match with a 154 and 124. In the match against Medina, he had the highest two games of the match with a 154 and 136. He continued to bowl strongly in the next game when he competed against Grand Island. Robert bowled a 96 and a 153. He currently has the highest average on the team with a 129. Robert tries hard and gives 100% effort in all of his practice and match games. -Wendy Zelasko, Unified Bowling Coach
Madisyn Ross’ effort, desire, and contribution to the Unified Bowling team has made a difference to her team, her coach, and her teammates throughout the week. Madisyn has been a consistent bowler throughout the season. Madisyn never stops working hard. During the match against Niagara Falls, Madisyn bowled her season high with a 106. Madisyn’s bowling average is a consistent 78. Madisyn is a cheerleader to her peers on the team and she is always cheering everyone else on. For these reasons, and many more, Madisyn is very deserving of this week’s Athlete of the Week. – Wendy Zelasko, Unified Bowling Coach
Senior hockey player Quinn Stoltman is helping lead the team down the stretch to a 9-3 record. He has 4 goals and 7 assists and is averaging over a point a game. His senior leadership on and off the ice is shining through. Quinn's character is a great teaching tool for the younger players in our program. – Duke Ziegler, Iroquois/Alden Federation Hockey Coach
Brianna Boucher has been a member of the Alden Girls Basketball program since the 7th grade. Last night on Senior Night, against JFK, she poured in 11 points…. 9 of which came from three-point land. Bri also had 6 rebounds, 5 assists and 4 steals. She played with great enthusiasm and intensity, which inspired our whole team!! -Lance Cayea, Varsity Girls Basketball Coach
Senior hockey player Aaron Wojtkowiak is helping lead the team down the stretch to a seven and two record. He has 5 goals and 6 assists to help lead our team to a seven and two overall record and has been averaging over a point a game. Aaron’s senior leadership on and off the ice is shining through. His character is a great teaching tool for the younger players in our program. -Duke Ziegler, Iroquois/Alden Federation Hockey Coach
Kaitlyn Partell is a junior on the Varsity Girls Basketball team. She is a very dedicated and loyal member of our team. She is a "silent" leader and works very hard every time she takes the court. This week against Cleveland-Hill, Kaitlyn was our leading scorer with 18 points, all of which were three-point shots. To make 6 three-point shots in a single game is an amazing feat! I believe she is worthy of this week's honor. – Lance Cayea, Varsity Girls Basketball Coach
Matt Hay has been instrumental in Alden winning their last three games in a row. We beat Lackawanna, Cleve-Hill (both teams we have not defeated in many years) and last night was Holland. Matt has been the leading rebounder and in points as well. In all three games Matt has had a double-double in points and rebounds. In the game last night Matt had 30 points 13 rebounds (8 offensive Rebounds). Five of those offensive rebounds directly led to Alden scoring 11 points. With Alden down by 5 with 1:09 left in the game Matt grabbed on offensive rebound and then found Gadd who hit a three pointer. On Alden’s next possession still down by two, Matt hits a shot and was fouled. He then made the foul shot, giving Alden a one-point lead. On Holland’s next possession Matt grabbed another rebound and Holland had to foul him. Matt then calmly sank two free throws to put Alden up by three with 3.5 seconds left in the game. Holland never got a shot off as Alden won 62 to 59. Matt is asked to do a lot for this team as he is the only true “big man” on the team. In the fourth quarter Matt was 6 for 7 from the foul line and had 10 points in that quarter. Matt plays hard and smart and is a good teammate as well. - Tim Stone (Varsity Boys Basketball)
Hannah Bishop, 3rd year member of the Varsity Bowling Team, has been chosen for her terrific performance on the lanes. She played a crucial role in helping the girls' team win the match against the always tough, 2nd place, Tonawanda team. This win secured the Alden team a spot in Sectionals. Hannah bowled a 212 in a game that was very close. The Lady Bulldogs were tied after the three games but ended up winning the last point of the match when it came down to total pins. Alden had 5 pins more than Tonawanda and won with a score of 4 to 3. Hannah works extremely hard in practice and her average has improved by 42 pins in the 3 years she has bowled for the team. She deserves the honor of being named Athlete of the Week. -Deb Stoldt (Varsity Boys Bowling)
Andy Pruetz is a junior on our Swim Team. He has participated in swimming for the last 3 years. This week in swimming Andy has improved all four of his times. Andy is a mid-distant/sprinter on our team. He dropped another 3 seconds off of his 200 free time making it a 2:03.85. He is ranked 3rd in this event for ECIC championship this weekend. For the first time all season, Andy was able to take a first place victory away from our very own Bobby Kersten in the 100 free. His time keeps dropping. He is now swimming a 55.23, compared to a 59.33 from our first meet of the season. Andy is also part of 2 undefeated relays. In the 200 free relay Andy is our fastest swimmer at a 24.91, and in the 400 free relay he is the fastest swimmer with a 56.37. (Nancy Bennett, Varsity Boys Swim Coach)
McKenzie Ezzo has been on the team for 5 years now and is our current captain. She is the first one to arrive and always the last one to leave, and during that time she pushes not only herself to become better at focus and steadiness, but she pushes everyone around her and helps our newest athletes for this year. McKenzie continues to be an inspiration to all other athletes on the team and helps to keep everyone’s spirits high. She helps to keep the team together even during these unsure times. In addition to all of this, McKenzie has continued to push past her own personal records and has improved dramatically over last year. She is always in the top two of the team for each match and has qualified for Sectionals. I could not think of a better person for this week’s athlete of the week. (Art Eggink, Varsity Rifle Coach)
Josh Baker has earned Athlete of the Week for his incredibly strong and consistent bowling performance in our three matches this week. Not only did Josh bowl his highest game ever – a 279 – he also bowled several great games - a 244, 228, 222, 212, a 220. He finished with some fantastic sets as well – a 680 and a 610. Josh is a senior and 3rd year member of the team. In our league, he currently has the 3rd highest average with a 208, and he is tied for first with the highest game being bowled – his 279. Congratulations on an amazing week, Josh! -Deb Stoldt, Varsity Boys Bowling Coach
Varsity Girls Basketball player Jenna Kersten is this week’s Athlete of the Week Winner!! In our first game against Holland on 2/10, Jenna scored 6 points, had 7 assists and 7 rebounds. She played a hard-nosed, man-to-man defense. Jenna is also a natural team leader! – Lance Cayea, Varsity Girls Basketball Coach
Connor Streit is a senior, and Captain on our swim team. In the first two meets of this season, Connor has dropped time in all four of his events, some as much as 13 seconds. Connor’s times in the 200 free and 500 free have earned him ECIC qualification and a chance to compete at our championship meets. Connor has been an individual double winner at both meets and helped his team in two relays secure first place finishes for Alden. This week alone Connor has scored 27 points. Connor’s events are the 200 free, 500 free, 200 free relay and 400 free relay.
Sydney Skimmer is a 5th year member of the Girls' Varsity Bowling Team, has been nominated as the Athlete of the Week for her outstanding performance on February 1st and 3rd, in matches against Cleve-Hill and Depew. She led the team against Cleve-Hill having two high games of a 236 and a 190, and helped the ladies get their second win of the season with a score of 7 to 0. Although the Lady Bulldogs lost a very close contest to the Depew Wildcats, Sydney finished the night with a 608 set. She had three terrific games of a 185, 225, and 198, and averaged a 203 on the night. Syd is a tremendous asset to the team, not only with her bowling skills, but because of the way she serves as another coach on the lanes offering suggestions to those in need. Sydney currently holds 4 of the 4 Alden High School records in bowling: High Set - 692, High Average-209, and High 6 Game Series (at the 2020 Sectionals) -1252. She is an amazing bowler and deserves to be recognized for this week's performance.
Matt is a Senior, Captain, and Forward on the Boys Varsity Soccer Team. He is a consistent force in the team’s offense. He currently leads ECIC Division IV in points with 12 goals and 7 assists.
This week, Matt scored 2 goals in the 3-0 win over Iroquois. He scored a goal versus Lancaster and an assist versus Akron. His biggest impact came in a huge 2-0 win over Lackawanna where he scored the game-winning goal and assisted on the 2nd goal. In his 3rd Varsity soccer season, Matt has demonstrated growth in soccer skills as well as leadership on and off the field. Matthew’s valuable contributions to the team have earned him recognition as this week's Alden High School Male Athlete of the Week. – Allen Turton, Boys Varsity Soccer Coach
Katherine has been a member of the Cross-Country team for three years. In those three years, she has proven to be a dedicated and positive influence on the team. She has been a leader on and off the field. She is currently number one in her senior class with a grade point average of 99. Katherine has been an outstanding team member throughout her career. She has been the lead runner for the past two years and is an excellent role model for Alden Cross-Country. She is a positive influence and motivator with a great attitude. She was selected by her teammates as the captain of the team. Each year, the Letterman’s Award is given to a runner who has displayed leadership, hard work, and a positive attitude, and Katherine’s peers chose her for the award this season. This past week at ECIC championships Katherine was the lead runner for the bulldogs. She placed 5th overall in the division and was a 1st team all-start for Division 4. Katherine was the difference in the victory over Depew by one point (52-53) allowing Alden to finish 2nd overall. -Ed Carll, Girls Varsity Cross Country Coach
Ben is a Senior and starting Goal Keeper on the Boys Varsity Soccer Team. The team has recorded 7 shutout wins so far this season with Ben in net for many of them. During the past week, Ben was in goal for 3 shutout victories. In the game he played on the field, he scored his second goal of the season. During Ben’s 3 Varsity seasons, he has grown as a leader in the high-pressure position of goalkeeper especially in tough games. He has also developed as a “leader by influence” during practices and games. Ben gives 100% every day and is an example of character while finding an excellent balance of intensity and team camaraderie. Ben’s growth over the years and outstanding performance in critical matches this week have earned him recognition as this week's Alden High School Male Athlete of the Week. – Allen Turton, Varsity Boys Soccer Coach
Shealinn Camp is a freshman on the Varsity Girls Swim Team. This is Shealinn's second year at the Varsity Level. She started on the varsity swim team as an 8th grader. She has been a part of our top butterfliers for the past 2 seasons and has shown great dedication and is motivated to always cutting her time down in her event where she made Class qualifying times. She has taken on another event this year, the 200-yard Individual Medley, one of the toughest events in the meet and she has continued to break her time down each time she swims the event. Shealinn is not only one of our top swimmers, she is a great teammate and has been a leader for some of our new swimmers this season. -Liz Osucha, Varsity Girls Swim Coach
Fall Season (10/23/20)
This week Kyle and the team competed against the Depew Wildcats. The boys team put their undefeated record to the test. Not having a point scored on them all season, the goal was to sweep the Wildcats in Bulldog fashion. The team, led by Kyle Urban, did just that. Seven Bulldogs finished before a Wildcat could be found. Kyle was the lone runner out front. Running 3.1 miles is bad enough, but not having anyone to pace you or push you is a whole different game. His discipline and self-motivation was enough to tie the Depew course record of 16:15. Kyle is a leader on and off the field. He is the type of athlete teammates aspire to be like, and coaches love to coach. -Ed Carll (Boys Varsity Cross Country Coach)
Madeline Erhardt is a Sophomore on the Varsity Swim team and this season she has already made original cut times for Championships. Maddie is our top swimmer who can swim any event and guarantee a place. Last meet, she swam the 100-yard backstroke and brought in a second place with an official time of 1:20.89. Maddie also swam the 100-yard freestyle event and swam a 1:06.96, another cut time made. Maddie shows motivation and dedication all season. She is always willing to swim in whatever we need, and is always looking to better her technique and speed work. Liz Osucha (Girls Varsity Swim Coach)
Fall Season 10/16/20
Luke Drew is a Senior, Captain, and Central Defender on the Boys Varsity Soccer Team. Luke has played almost every minute of every game as the Bulldogs have started out the season with a 4-0 record and have only allowed 2 goals. Luke gives 100% at every practice and game. He is the anchor of the defense and a vocal leader on the field. In his 3rd Varsity soccer season, Luke has demonstrated growth in skills and confidence in the high pressure center-back position. Off the field, Luke used his technical skills to lead the Live Streaming project that has enabled remote spectators to watch both boys and girls soccer games this season (www.aldenschools.org/live). Luke’s valuable contributions to the team have earned him recognition as this week's Alden High School Male Athlete of the Week. -Allen Turton, Varsity Boys Soccer Coach
Senior Emily Jablonski had 4-0 in matches this week, keeping her undefeated season alive.
She has an unblemished standing at 7 and 0, dominating a double header against Eden winning 20 games to 1. This week, she won her Springville match against one of the top-rated girls in the area. Emily has worked nonstop with laser focus and an unmatched work ethic to continue her dominating, undefeated season. -Zach Stone, Varsity Girls Tennis Coach
Fall Season (10-9-20)
Liam Ryan has been the lowest scorer for all of our 9 matches this year!! He is currently ranked 10th out of all golfers in ECIC’s large and small schools. Liam has been a role model for the younger athletes on the golf team. The team’s record is currently 8-1 and they are tied for 1st place in our division!
-Paul Casillo (Boys Varsity Golf)
6 goals, 4 assists (leads section 6 as of 10/7)
Alyssa is one of the hardest working girls I’ve had the opportunity to coach. Her soccer IQ and athletic ability have allowed her to become one of the most dominant strikers in all of Section VI. Alyssa has scored a hat-trick in 2 of the 3 games we have played including 2 game-winning goals, with one of those coming with 30 seconds left in a game against Holland. At this pace, Alyssa is on her way to break 50 career varsity goals by season’s end. -Joe Olaf (Girls Varsity Soccer)
Harley Dudley continues to have the highest average of all the bowlers on the Unified Bowling Team. She has the third highest average on the team, which includes partner averages. Harley always comes to the lanes ready to bowl. She has a positive attitude, and she encourages all team members. In addition, Harley is very helpful and often provides advice to other bowlers. Congratulations Harley!!
At sectionals this week, Bobby swam the 200 free relay and the 400 free relay. He set two personal best times. And he helped his team to improve their time. The 200 free relay improved their time by 2 sec. And the 400 free improved their time by 9 seconds. He is Alden's number 2 sprinter behind senior Sam Cansdale.
Allie Petschke played a tremendous game against Holland this week. As one of our Captains, Allie's leadership and drive has proven to be a role model for our younger players. Allie poured in 14 points, had 6 rebounds and 4 assists against Holland. Despite the fact that it was a tough game for our team, Allie played her heart out till the end. Her effort is an inspiration to all.
Connor Streit set two new individual personal best times at the Class C prelims on Thursday, in the 200 free and the 500 free. He placed 7th in the 200 free out of 27 swimmers, and he placed 5th in the 500 free out of 21 swimmers. He and his relay teammate placed in the top 6 and qualified to return to the championship meet on Sat. Connor will also be swimming both of his individual events against some of the fastest kids in small schools. Connor is an outstanding Captain, always encouraging and helping his relay teams to improve. He works hard and it is paying off. So far, Connor will attend sectionals next week for 2 relays and is only 1.2 seconds away from qualifying in the 200 free.
Grace Pastuszynski is a co-captain and leads by example. This week against Tonawanda, she had a Triple Double (21 points, 11 assists, and 10 rebounds). A Triple Double is very difficult to achieve. In the fourth quarter she made 8 out of 10 free throws to seal the victory over Tonawanda by a score of 51-45. Had she not shot 80% from the free throw line, the outcome of that game may have been different. Last night (Senior Night) Grace had 7 points, 7 rebounds and 8 assists. As our floor general (point guard), she managed our offense with great precision using pinpoint passes to get the ball to the people in scoring position. However, one of Grace's greatest assets is her love for the game. Grace loves to compete and her teammates feed off of that energy. The girls basketball program will miss her presence next year.
Jacob Baker is just coming back from a broken collar bone and trying to get acclimated to playing basketball again in a competitive situation. Alden had to play Eden without our top scorer and rebounder (Matt Hay) who was out for that game. So it fell on Jacob to fill that void that was left. Jacob ended up leading the team with 12 points, 9 rebounds, 5 steals and 6 block shots as Alden defeated Eden 45 to 38. Jacob was a big presence in the middle of the defense and played very well for his first extended playing time this year.
Hannah Bishop, an 8th grader, had one of her best nights of bowling in a match against Cheektowaga on January 27th. As a second year member of the varsity team, she has shown amazing progress. This week she had a terrific performance bowling a 164, 182 and a 210 for a 556 set. She averaged a 185 on the night. Her end of the season average was a 143 which is a 37 pin increase from last season. Her kind, friendly, hardworking personality makes her an asset to the team and a pleasure to work with.
Cameron Eastland, first-year member of the Alden Varsity Bowling Team, has been nominated for Athlete of the Week for his terrific performance in a match on January 22, against the Tonawanda Warriors. He bowled three solid games with a 189, 193, and a 190, for a 572 set, and he averaged a 191 on the night. The amazing thing about this is that Cameron’s average at the beginning of the season was a 133. Each week, he comes to practice and works his hardest to improve his game. He has been a wonderful asset to the team. Great job, Cam!
Miranda has been nominated for Athlete of the Week for her outstanding performance on January 22. She is a second year member of the Alden Varsity Bowling Team, and she has already worked her way up to the A Team. Miranda has shown a tremendous amount of improvement throughout the season. In our match against the Tonawanda Warriors, she bowled her career high with a 215, and she averaged a 171 on the night. The unbelievable part is that this is 25 pins higher than her regular season average, which has also increased by 34 pins since November. Way to go, Miranda!
Currently Matt Cole is number two in points scored for the Varsity Boys Swimming team. He is only one of two individuals who have qualified for sectional swimming, and last week and Tuesday of this week he swam so hard that his team took ECIC Division championship. Matt Cole got three 1st places, two 2nd places and one 3rd place. Matt was also part of the 200 medley relay team that just Tuesday qualified for sectionals. Matt is a very integral part of this Varsity team.
Madison Riedel has had her best week of bowling this season. In our match against Depew, she had a 178 game which is over 30 pins above her average. In the match against Cleve-Hill, she bowled all three games well above her average, one of which was a 170. Each week, Madison helps her team bring their best to the match.
Matt Hay has led the team the last two games in scoring (31) and rebounding (26) having recorded a double/double in points and rebounds the last two games. He was a big factor in making Alden’s last two games competitive (Alden has lost most games by at least 20 points). Matt is the anchor of this team on offense and defense. Against Cleve Hill Matt had 6 offense rebounds and 10 defensive along with 11 points as Alden had a shot to win the game at the buzzer but missed and lost 62-61. Against Tonawanda, Matt led the team with 20 points, 10 rebounds and 5 assists. Once again Alden was in the game start to finish but came up short 50-45. Alden was missing 3 starters and their sixth man due to illness. Matt is also the team’s captain and is starting to show his leadership skills. They really showed up with his effort and attitude in that game.
As one of the team’s Tri-Captains, Haley Tyburski is a natural team leader. She averages 14.12 points per game this season. Against Cleveland Hill, our team was down by 4 points at half time in the first round of the Pioneer Waste Management Basketball Tournament. Haley put the team on her back and brought them back to secure the first-round win, propelling us to the Championship game of the tournament this Saturday. She did this by pouring in an amazing 31 points, 22 of which came in the second half. She also had 8 rebounds and 3 steals on the night. Haley's vocal leadership at halftime was a major key in rallying our team to the win. Haley is one of our finest student-athletes here at Alden High School.
Sam is undefeated in our division in the 50 free and the 100 free. He has qualified for both ECIC and Class C championship in the 50 free the 100 free and all three relays. He's been a varsity swimmer since 8th grade and has been always in the top 3 for points. Today he even volunteered to swim some other events out of his norm., due to illness on our team and we have every confidence that he will make Alden Proud and score us points to win again over a division team.
McKenzie has been with the team for 4 years now, and she has constantly pushed herself to be better while also helping the team with everything from scoring, to challenging all teammates to get better. She had one of her best matches this week by reaching a 96 out of 100 on a single target. While this doesn’t seem very high, this is an extremely difficult task. This puts her among the top athletes of the league. She is an amazing choice for this recognition.
Marty Rzepka has been nominated as the Athlete of the Week for his terrific performance in the bowling match against the Depew Wildcats on December 10th. The Alden ‘Bowl’dogs traveled to the Broadway Lanes for a difficult contest, that unfortunately ended in a loss for Alden. However, Marty finished the night with a 636 set after bowling two high games of a 233 and a 234, and averaging 212 on the night. He was voted as Captain by his teammates, and he fulfills this role as an ideal captain should. Marty definitely deserves to be recognized for this week’s accomplishments. Congratulations, Marty!
Sydney Skimmer, 4 year member of the Girls' Varsity Bowling Team, has been nominated as the Athlete of the Week for her outstanding performance on December 10th, in a match against the Depew Wildcats. Although the Lady Bulldogs lost a very close contest, with just a 24 pin deficit, Sydney finished the night with a 617 set, the highest of the match. She had two terrific games of a 214 and 232. Sydney currently holds a 199 average, which only continues to increase each week. She was voted Captain by her teammates and she serves as another coach on the lanes offering suggestions to those in need. Sydney currently holds 3 of the 4 school records in bowling, which she earned last year: High Set - 641, High Average-191, and High 6 Game Series (at Sectionals) -1243. She is an amazing bowler and deserves to be recognized for this week's performance. Congratulations, Sydney!
The Bulldogs played host to the visiting Eden/North Collins Raiders on Thursday, October 17th in their final regular season game of the year. In a back and forth contest, the Bulldogs were able to come out on top by a score of 51-37. One player that stood out was Senior, Felix Luna. Felix carried the ball 5 times for 73 yards in a backup role to Senior Running Back, Robby Motz. What made Felix’s contributions even more meaningful was that he was able to score his first Varsity touchdown on a 44 yard rush that saw him beat the defense to the edge and broke several tackles along the way. This touchdown came at a critical point in the game. Felix is a true program player who has consistently put the needs of the team in front of his own needs and his own ego. He is extremely coachable, selfless, and dedicated to his team. As a coach, it was extremely rewarding to see Felix score his first varsity touchdown on Senior Night. He works incredibly hard and it was outstanding to witness him reap a small benefit. -Rob Currin
Despite only being a freshman, Kyla has made her mark on the varsity cheer team. Her flying skills and top-notch tumbling skills have proved to be a very valuable asset to the squad. Her determination to stick new skills and truly leave it all on the performance mat is what sets Kyla apart. She never lets a bad day stop her from giving 100%. In addition to her athleticism, Kyla also has an amazingly positive attitude and all-around kind personality that she shares with her team every day. Congrats Kyla!
This past weekend Cameron Eastland participated in the 34th annual Bulldog Stampede. Cam ran his best time of the year for a 5k (16:17), which is a personal record by almost 30 seconds. This effort was enough to place him 2nd overall out of 132 runners. Cam's performance helped the Bulldogs upset the Number #1 school (Springville-Griffith Institute) and place 2nd Overall in the small school race.
Senior Natalie Koepf is the second singles player on the Varsity Girls Tennis Team. She finished her second consecutive undefeated regular season with a victory over Springville-Griffith. She followed this up with a first round upset at the ECIC tournament, defeating Orchard Park 6-4, 6-3. Natalie's terrific week and exciting career for Bulldog Tennis should be applauded. Thank you and congratulations Natalie!
This past weekend, Kyle Urban placed 1st out of 100 runners at the Pembroke Invitational. Kyle's 5K time was 16:08. His leadership and performance helped the Alden team to a 1st place finish in small schools. Last week at the McQuaid Invitational, Kyle placed 3rd in the tough-seeded race out of 165 with a 3-mile time of 15:39.
Maya Fronczak is a Junior on the Varsity Swim Team this year. She is our number one breaststroker, and this week she brought in a first place in the 100-yard breaststroke at the Pioneer meet and at last night’s meet against Springville. Her first place wins brought us closer and ended us with a tie in the Springville meet. Alden has never beaten or tied with Springville. This is the closest we have been in the past 8 years! Maya has qualified for the ECIC championship meet and the Class C meet. Maya is hardworking and determined. She has shown great leadership this year. We can't wait to see what she does at our ECIC and Class meets!
Austin Wanat is a junior and has been an excellent addition to the Varsity Cheer team. He has worked diligently to learn and perfect the sport in areas such as motions, tumbling and stunting. Austin has become an outstanding back spot and jumper. Every single week, he works to improve his skills and pushes his teammates to do the same. Austin is the definition of a reliable teammate. His willingness to always spot stunts and ensure his teammates’ safety is extremely comforting. His upbeat attitude is infectious, and he continues to wow his team (and crowds) with his cool dance moves.
Sam Hillman is a senior on the Varsity Swim Team and Varsity Cross Country Team. She placed first in the 50-yard freestyle this week with an ECIC and Class qualifying time at Tuesday’s meet against Tonawanda, while training for the Bulldog Stampede with the Cross Country team. Sam is Alden's first student athlete to participate in two varsity sports in the same season. Sam Hillman was also among 6 of our top student athletes to be present at the ribbon cutting ceremony for the track and field. Sam is a hard worker, dedicated and motivated in everything she sets her mind to.
Ben is a Junior and the starting Goal Keeper for the Boys Varsity Soccer Team who has played nearly every minute of every game this season. His combination of fearless determination and athleticism is critical to the team’s success. This week versus a strong Lackawanna team, Ben made multiple heroic saves to hold the opponent scoreless in the final 60 minutes of the game while the offense scored 2 unanswered goals in the tough 4-2 loss. Versus Holland, Ben and his defense earned their first shutout of season to help with a critical 2-0 win for the Bulldogs. Ben has developed into a leader on the field who is the foundation for our defense and thrives in high-pressure game situations. Ben’s valuable contributions to the team have earned him recognition as this week's Alden High School Male Athlete of the Week.
Alexis Grassl is a leader on the Girls Varsity Soccer team during practice and during the games. She keeps the defense in line, which is probably why Alden has only surrendered three goals in seven games on 33 shots. This stat is good for 91% save percentage and .5 goals per game. Also, vs. Lackawanna on 9/26, Alexis tied the school record for career shutouts with 28. Her hard work and dedication make her worthy of this week’s Athlete of the Week
Liam Ryan is a junior this year. He is Captain of the Varsity Golf Team. Liam definitely leads by example! He was the medalist for both of his matches this week. Liam also had his season low this week with a 38, which was only 2 over par!! Congratulations to Liam, this week’s Alden Male Athlete of the Week!
Junior Shannon Wypij is a leader and an offensive (noun, not adjective…meaning “an attacking military campaign”) juggernaut. She currently has 7 goals & 1 assist at this early point in the season, which leads the team. This week, she scored 3 goals, 2 of which helped secure a 3-0 win over Depew. Shannon has played almost every minute of each game so far this season, and her intensity and stamina have been critical to the team’s success. She has developed into a leader on the field who excels at communication and taking on high-pressure game situations. Shannon’s valuable contributions to the team both during practice and in games, make her worthy of this week’s Alden Female Athlete of the Week!
Senior, Captain, and Defensive Mid-fielder on the Boys Varsity Soccer Team, Luke currently has 2 goals and 1 assist at this early point in the season which is impressive for a defender. This week he earned recognition as an All Star in the Amherst Tournament where he earned a goal and assist in the team 3-2 loss to Amherst. His critical defensive role of marking the Alleghany-Limestone’s best attackers in the next tournament game helped give the Bulldogs a tight 2-1 win. Luke has played almost every minute of each game so far this season and with 4 games decided by one goal, his intensity and stamina have been critical to the team’s success. Luke has developed into a leader on the field who excels at communication and taking on high pressure game situations. Luke’s valuable contributions to the team have earned him recognition as this week's Alden High School Male Athlete of the
Senior & Captain, Emma has been playing for Alden Varsity Volleyball since she was in 8th grade. She exceeds expectations as a leader. All her teammates voted for her not only because of her skills, but also her willingness to help anyone who asks for it. Emma has also racked up plenty of stats, such as 18 aces, 14 kills, and 13 digs already. We have only had two league games so far, but as you can see from her stats, Emma leads the team with her abilities. She is to be commended for her dedication to the sport and the team. She is a Senior Class officer this year, has a job outside of school and even plays travel volleyball for NFVB. Emma has never missed one day of practice, any game, or any tournament in her 5 years of playing volleyball. She deserves to be recognized for all her hard work.
Lucas Jurek pitched 2 games (1 of them at sectionals). He threw 110 pitches against Cleve-Hill (struck out 8, 4 hits, 1 earned run). Lucas then threw 83 pitches against Fredonia last night (6 strike outs, 1 hit and 2 earned runs). In a 5-game stretch, Lucas had a batting average of .389 , which includes 9 hits, 2 walks, 4 runs scored and 4 runs batted in. He is consistently the top pitcher and one of two top hitters on the team. Lucas kept the Bulldogs in the sectional game vs. Fredonia with his pitching and batting. A Senior, leading his team, giving it his all, one final time. After the game, Lucas took time to thank each of the umpires and each coach on the opposing team individually and then came up to his own coach to thank him for a good senior year. This showed Lucas' true character and helped show the younger guys on the team what it means to be a leader/captain and the right way to play the game of baseball. Lucas is recognized as a student athlete who thrives in the classroom, on the athletic field and in the community
This past week, the Girls Track team won the division by defeating Holland. Holland girls have won the division for the past ten years. It was a total team effort. Erica O'Connor led the charge, placing 1st in the 400 hurdles running a personal best of 1:12; 2nd in the pole vault; 2nd in the high jump with a 5' jump and anchored the 4 x 400 team. Her performance was just what the Lady Bulldogs needed to upset the undefeated Dutchmen and also put Erica at the top for most team points…..over 100 points for the season!
Boys Varsity Tennis Junior, Lucas Bush, Co-Captain of the Varsity Tennis Team had a tremendous season – losing only a single match this year and leading his team to another Division 4 Championship.
He advanced to the ECIC tournament and was given the 8th seed out of 32 Players. Lucas won his 1st two matches to advance to the second round. In his 2nd match, he showed real determination by fighting back from losing his first set 1-6 to win the next two 6-2/6-3. This was the first time Lucas ever advanced beyond Day 1 – and he set a personal goal this year to work towards making it to Day 2. He dropped his first match on Day 2 of ECIC’s to a player from Williamsville South – but then won his playback match against Springville 6-3/6-4. Lucas went on to lose his final match to West Seneca 1-6/7-6/6-2. Overall Lucas finished in 6th place which is a tremendous accomplishment and positions him as the 1st alternate for Sectionals. Additionally, this ECIC finish is the best Singles players result in over 20 years for Alden. Lucas has shown his leadership all season and has led by example every practice and every match. He supports the other players on the team, leads all warm-ups, and assists the coaches by working to improve his fellow teammates. He has matured as both a person and a player, and his accomplishments this season and these past few days at ECIC’s earns him the recognition as Athlete of the Week
Samantha is one of our distance runners for the Girls Track Team. Against Cleve-Hill, she ran the 4 x 800, open 800, 1 mile run and the 2 mile. Those four events are the longest and hardest events on the track. It’s not that Samantha wanted to run them, it’s the fact that she stepped up to fill in for other runners who were hurt or not at the meet. She never questioned or complained about doing them. She is a perfect example of a real team player. Someone who sacrifices for good of the team. She was outstanding in all events. She won the 4 x 800 relay, giving the team 5 points. She won the mile run =(5 points), won the 2 mile run =(5 points) and 3rd in the 800 = (1 Point). Samantha is truly a team player and an all-around great person and very much deserving of Athlete-of-the-Week.
Cameron Eastland envisions what he wants to accomplish and then unflaggingly pushes himself to achieve. He sets goals and dreams big. No mountain too high for Mr. Eastland. Alden Track and Field’s distance team was challenged with carrying the day against the sprint-strong Cleveland Hill Eagles on Tuesday, May 7th. The distance group did not let the team down. Cameron ran the four longest events in a dual meet, 4x800m relay, 800m run, 1600m run, and the 3200m run. This adds up to four miles, raced at fast-paced intervals, over the course of about two hours. While earning three 2nd place finishes, Eastland also achieved an ECIC and provisional Sectional time in both the two-mile and the one-mile races. Additionally, he earned his season best team in the 800m run. Even after his coach gave him an out from the four tough races, Cameron never backed down. He was convinced he could finish all four in record time. Eastland did just that. Set his eyes on the prize and tracked it down.
Senior Captain Emma Diebel is a 3rd year Varsity player and has helped Alden improve its team record to 10 wins and 2 losses on the season. Since returning from injury 5 games ago, Emma has helped the team win all 5 games in a row. On the mound, Pitcher Emma has 2 wins and 1 save in that stretch, as well as key wins against Holland and Cleveland Hill and a save against Tonawanda on Monday 5/6. Emma had 20 strikeouts during the 3 games. At the plate, Emma batted 429 to help on the offense. Emma has retaken her role as the NO# 1 pitcher on the rotation for the Lady Bulldogs.
Matt Derenda has had an outstanding start to his sophomore season. Demonstrating leadership and an incredible work ethic, Matt has been competing at a whole other level this year. His discipline at practice has been paying off. At the team’s first dual meet of the year, they squared off against JFK. Derenda earned 8.5 points after taking first place in the 400m, third place in the triple jump, and helped win both the 4x400m and the 4x100m relays. Matt can often be seen leading the pack at practice, pushing his teammates to be their best.
Karlie Hake was selected by her teammates to be captain this year. The leadership she has demonstrated, athletically and motivationally, has been outstanding. She is a leader on and off the field. Additionally, Hake ranks number six in her class and maintains a GPA of 96.37. At the team’s first league meet on Tuesday, April 30th, Hake took first place in both the shot put and the discus throw. Her discus throw of 92’8” was her top throw of the year and qualifies her for ECIC and Sectional competition. Already qualified for postseason championships in the shot put, she tossed the shot 32’4” to earn her second first place finish. Her first place finishes were part of a team effort that scored a big win over the JFK Bears. As a five-year member of the varsity track team, Hake is providing both steady leadership and athletic performances that are grabbing key points for the team.
Cole Carpenter had an explosive start to his senior season on the Track and Field team. On Saturday, April 13th at the Alexander Invitational, Carpenter took the long jump by storm. He grabbed first place out of 45 competitors with a huge jump of 19’8.5”. This is Cole’s first year competing in the long jump. His jump on Saturday already qualifies him provisionally for the ECIC and Sectional Championship Meets. Additionally, Cole competes in the 100m dash, taking 4th place, and the 4x100m relay team, which took 2nd.
Junior Emma Wlostowski, the Varsity Softball shortstop, has played exceptional defense this year on the field. In the game against Holland on April 12th it was her Offensive contribution which helped lead the team to victory. Emma Wlostowski batted 4 for 6 with a double and a triple. Emma also had four RBIs. She helped Alden raise their record to 4 wins and 1 loss on the season. After five games, Wlostowski is batting 500 and has eight RBI’s. Emma bats second in the lineup and is the spark that gets the offense going.
Ryan Becker, a junior, has been with the Boys Varsity Tennis team the past three years. This season, he stepped into a regular starting role as the leader on the 2nd Doubles Team. He has shown tremendous dedication to improving his skills on the court, and his team won his last two division matches against Springville 6-0/6-0 and Eden 6-4/6-4. Ryan has put in the effort at practice and continues to lead the team by example, earning him recognition as this week's Alden High School Male Athlete of the Week.
Captain and Catcher, senior Maddy Gadd is a 3-year starter on Varsity Softball and 2-time All Star (2018/2nd team & 2017/1st team). She picked up where she left off from last season. Maddy helped the Varsity Softball team win three games out of four over the last two weeks. She has an on-base% of 786 and a batting average of 750 after our first four games. Gadd also has 7-RBI’s , 3-doubles and 1-triple. She leads the team in hitting. Maddy Gadd is a mentor to the younger players and a leader on the field.
Sam Cansdale was Alden's only swimmer to qualify for sectionals in an individual event and the only swimmer to swim in both of the two relays that qualified. He improved his 100 free time to a 52.77 which did beat all of our the competitors this season. He is team Captain and leader. Sam is a junior this season, and his coach only believes he will only get better. Every season Coach Bennett has coached him, his 100 free time has gone down. Who knows…maybe the school record’s next? Sam was also part of the 200 medley relay team and the 400 free relay team. The 400 relay team went into sectionals ranked last (31st), and with the help of Sam and his teammates that relay team finished 26th. Great Season Sam!
Haley Tyburski had an outstanding game against traditional power Holland. She had 6 steals, 5 assists, and poured in 17 points. Haley also had a great game against Tonawanda as well, playing outstanding defense and showing great leadership on the floor.
In the last two games, Lucas Jurek has led the team in scoring, rebounding (one rebound shy of a double double each game), assists and steals. He shot 86% from the foul line and was not afraid to attack the basket. Lucas was a leader on the floor and played with confidence. Even though Alden lost both games, they were in them until the end. The first time they lost to Holland by 26 and this time by 12. The game was in reach with 1:30 to go. Against Cleve-Hill, they lost by 36 the first time. This time, Alden had the lead the majority of the game. They tired out, as they only had seven players eligible to play and lost by 10 as Cleve-Hill pulled away in the last minute. Lucas’ overall improved playing was a big reason Alden was in these games and was able to compete.
Emma Sheehan has been a valuable member of the Girls’ Varsity Bowling Team for 3 years. She has always helped the team out by trying her hardest where ever she was put, whether it be on the A Team or B Team. Emma bowled 6 strong games in the Section VI Invitational Tournament on February 2nd, and she finished 52nd out of 129 bowlers and helped the Alden team finish in 10th place out of 22 teams. Emma also bowled 3 fantastic games on February 5th, against the Depew Wildcats. She bowled a 156, a 173, and a 159, averaging 163 on the night, which is 14 points above her seasonal match average. Emma is a kind teammate who never shows her frustration and always has a smile on her face.
Jacob Baker help lead Alden to a win over Eden. Jacob had a double, double with 12 points (second on team) and 11 rebounds (led the team). Jacob also was the anchor of the defense after Matt Hay went out with an injury and Jacob had to play out of position. Jacob also had 4 assists and two steals in that game. In the second game this week Alden lost to JFK. But Jacob led the team in scoring 11 points and securing a team leading 8 rebounds and shot 55% from the floor. In the last two games Jacob has led the team in total points, rebounds and blocks, second in assists (excellent for a center) and steals on the team. Jacob also shot 53% for both games and as a team we only shot 30%. The freshman has improved each and every game and is one of the hardest workers on the team. Jacob is becoming a player teams have to worry about and he is a top player on this team already as a freshman.
This week’s Athlete-of-the-Week is Junior Allie Petschke for Girls Varsity Basketball. Allie had 14 points, 7 rebounds, 4 assists and 2 blocked shots vs. Lackawanna at an away game on Tues., 1/15/19. Congratulations Allie!
Alex Rzepka has been nominated as Athlete of the Week for his unbelievable performance in the Cleve-Hill and Tonawanda bowling matches. On 1-7, the ‘Bowl’dogs defeated Cleve-Hill with a score of 7 to 0. Alex bowled the High Game (267) and the High Set (634) of the night. In our match against the tough Tonawanda team on 1-9, Alex helped Alden clinch the last point of the game and defeat the Warriors with a close 4 to 3 score. As anchor, Alex completed his job in earning his team the critical points needed with his amazing games of 220 and 199. At the start of the season, Alex was voted Captain by his teammates, and he fulfills this role as an ideal captain should. It’s as though there is an additional coach on the lanes. Alex definitely deserves to be recognized for this week’s accomplishments.
Grace Pastuszynski has been named this week’s Athlete of the Week. In games against both Cleve-Hill and Springville, Grace was the defensive leader on the court, as well as the floor general directing the offense. She led the team in steals and assists in both contests. Against Springville, who is in second place in league play, Grade poured in 9 points to lead the team in scoring. Grace Pastuszynski is that athlete who can always be counted on to bring her very best to each and every contest.
Congratulations to Andrew Gabalski for his outstanding performance on December 17th against the Maryvale Flyers. Andrew bowled a 178, 278, and a 246 for a 702 set. These fantastic scores earned him the honor of High Game and Set of the Match, and helped lead the ‘Bowl’dogs to a victory. Andrew is a 5-year member of the Alden Varsity Bowling Team, and he continues to prove his worth each week. He definitely deserves to be recognized for this week’s accomplishments
Sydney Skimmer has been nominated as the Athlete of the Week for her fantastic performance in the December 17th bowling match against Maryvale. Syd bowled a 201, 206, and a 234 earning her the honors of High Game and Set (641) of the match, in addition to breaking the school record for High Set (641), which was previously held by Laura Overhoff with a 635. Her devotion to this sport is commendable. She has proven her worth repeatedly and deserves to be recognized for this terrific accomplishment. Congratulations, once again, Sydney!
Sam Cansdale has been a double winner in the 50 Free and the 100 Free for the Varsity Boys Swim Team in the last three meets. He has been part of two of the three relays which have won in every one of those meets. With his help, the team has secured three victories, all within their division. Sam’s peers have voted on him to be Captain of the team.
Marissa McMurtree has been with the Rifle team for 3 years. She has continued to push herself as hard as she can, as she has wanted to follow in her brother’s footsteps. She made it into the top 4 for the first time on 12/12 with a 272. On 12/13 against Pioneer, she shot an amazing 285 which put her in the number one position for the match. She has an unbelievable three targets, each of which were a 95 out of a possible 100 points. She has shown that she has the determination to go to States and help bring the team to victory. Even more impressive is her positive attitude (even when she may not be shooting her best) on the range, which helps everyone stay positive, motivated, and determined to do their best and have fun doing it.
Cole Kissell won the 2018 Southwestern JV Wrestling Tournament on December 1st in Jamestown. All five of his matches were first-round pins. Cole dominated everyone he wrestled at the tournament, including an experienced senior who was in a higher weight class.
Sydney Skimmer had a fantastic performance in the December 5th bowling match against Tonawanda. Syd bowled a 156, 222, and a 205 earning her the honor of High Game and Set (583) of the match. She trains extensively in the off-season and is a 3rd-year member of the team. She, as a freshman, was voted Captain by her teammates, as she always helps the others by offering tips to improve their game. Sydney has proven her worth repeatedly and deserves to be recognized for this terrific performance that helped lead the Lady ‘Bowl’dogs to their first win of the season.
Bobby Adams is a senior on the Boys Cross Country team, who has been running cross country for six years, four of those years as a varsity starter. In that time, Bobby has been a member of four straight divisional championship teams. He was also on the sectional championship team which placed 4th at states. He is a leader on and off the course. He maintains honor roll status and is an Eagle Scout. Bobby is an unselfish teammate. He been mentoring freshman runner Kyle Urban, and the two together are a force in the section. This week at the Bulldog Stampede, Bobby was the number one runner on the team. He finished 10th out of a field of 82 and ran one of his best times of the year. He was named ECIC Runner of the Week. This Tuesday at JFK, he finished 1st overall and ran his best 5k time. It takes a devoted person who is intrinsically motivated to go out and run each day in Cross Country.
Julia Salim is a senior on the Girls Varsity Swim Team and has been since she was in eighth grade. Julia is one of the only swimmers on the team who can swim any event her coaches put her in. Individually, she has qualified for the 50 Free, 100 Free, 200 Free, 500 Free, 100 Back, 100 Fly and 200 Individual Medley for both the ECIC championship and the Class championship. Julia not only excels in the water but academically as well, achieving 90s in all of her classes. Her work ethic, dedication and leadership on the team as one of the captains, as well as her commitment and competitive spirit, make her a worthy candidate for this week’s Athlete of the Week.
This week Alden's Boys Cross Country put their 8-year division championship streak to the test. On Wednesday, they hosted the Mighty Springville Griffins. The Griffins have been ranked the number one team in division 4. Not only 1st there, they are favored to win the Class C sectional meet. The Bulldogs faced the mighty giants head on. To make a long story short: Matt was behind two Springville runners at the 2-mile mark by 29 seconds, with just a little more than a mile to go. It was all or nothing at this point. Matt was able to close the gap to 10 seconds with just 400 yards left. He made his move and passed the two runners. By doing so, Matt sealed the win for the Bulldogs, giving them 9 straight division titles. Yes that’s right "9"!! The crazy part of the story is that Matt has been injured for 2-1/2 weeks, and this was his first race back!!
Junior Sierra Warner, first-year member of the Alden Varsity Girls Swim Team, has already proven to be one of the team’s top swimmers this season. She is in the top 3 spots for most points for the team. Sierra has made ECICs in the 200 Individual Medley, 50 Freestyle, 100 Butterfly and 100 Freestyle and has achieved a spot in all 3 relays which include the Medley Relay, 200 yard Freestyle Relay and the 400 Freestyle Relay. She has also made the cut time in the Class C Championship Meet in multiple events which include the 200 Individual Medley, 50 Freestyle and the 100 Butterfly. Sierra has one of the strongest work ethics the team has seen. She is strong willed, dedicated and always ready for competition. Sierra is a great athlete who excelled this week in the 200 Individual Medley by dropping her time down to a 2:42.99, a total of 2 seconds. Her goal now is to make sectional times for all her main events.
Zac O’Shei continued his potentially record-setting 2018 football season on Friday night versus Newfane. He notched 16 tackles versus the Panthers, bringing his season total to a whopping 65 tackles in just 5 games. The next closest member of the team has a total of 16 tackles on the season. Despite the outcome of the game, despite the score of the game, Zac consistently puts forth maximum effort. He serves as a vocal leader on and off the field and he sets an extraordinary example for all members of the football program.
On Friday, Natalie kept her undefeated season at 2nd singles alive with an impressive win over East Aurora. Running high on the emotions of Senior Night, Natalie was down 1-4 in the first set before storming back to win 7-5. She then took the second set at 6-2. This allowed Alden to keep their undefeated season alive and moved Natalie to a 9 and 0 record without dropping a single set all season.
At Friday night’s game in Tonawanda, the Bulldogs dropped to 0-4 on the season after losing 27-0 to the Warriors last week. Without one of their best players, the team knew that they were in for an uphill battle. In addition to this, on the twelfth play of the game, starting quarterback Lucas Bush left the game with an injury that he would not return from. This opened the door of opportunity for Alex Rzepka to step in as the field general. Despite not having taken a snap this season as the quarterback, Alex stood in and led his teammates with confidence. Time and time again, Alex stood in and delivered. In the fourth quarter, he took a hit that split his chin open. Alex managed to and insisted upon finishing the game for his teammates. While the team traveled home on the bus, Alex received multiple stitches at a local hospital to close the gash in his chin. On Friday night, Alex Rzepka re-affirmed the respect that his coaches and teammates have for him.
Monday 9/24 vs Tonawanda – Alyssa scored 3 goals in 4-0 win; Tuesday 9/25 vs Eden – she scored 2 goals (one of which was a game-winning goal in OT) in 3-2 win; Wednesday 9/26 @ Wilson she scored 1 goal in OT in 3-3 Tie. That’s 6 goals in 3 games! Alyssa now has 12 goals and 4 assists on the season (11 games) and is only a Sophomore. This week (and season) has been the Alyssa Attardo show on the soccer field!
As a member of the Boys Cross Country team, Kyle Urban has finished 10th at the Knox Invitational and 12th at Bemus Point. This week: with senior and lead runner Bobby Adams out, Kyle placed 1st overall in the small schools race at West Seneca. Kyle was the 1st place finisher of a field of 59 runners with a time of 17:34. On Tuesday at home against Eden, Kyle placed 1st for the Alden: giving the Bulldogs a win over Eden…18 to 38.
Varsity Tennis would like to acknowledge the great work and success this week of first singles player Jen Marino. Against Springville, Jen beat her opponent 6-0, 6-2. She then handed her Depew opponent a loss by the score of 6-3, 6-2 in a tremendous back and forth match. Finally, Jen helped Alden stay undefeated with a 6-0, 6-1 defeat of Tonawanda. Jen’s work ethic and sense of calm in pressure moments makes her a great asset to her team. She is a wonderful leader through example both on and off the tennis courts. Congratulations on a fine week!
Austin Avino is a Senior and Forward on the Boys Varsity Soccer Team. He currently leads the team with 4 goals and 1 assist. This week he scored 2 goals in a critical 4-2 win over Springville and 2 goals in another divisional game against Eden which helped the Bulldogs to a 4-2 win.
His composure under pressure, generous personality and dedication to yearlong self-improvement has given Alden an offensive spark to win. Austin’s valuable contributions to the team have earned him recognition as this week's Alden High School Male Athlete of the Week.
Allie Petschke started out the Girls Varsity Golf season with the lowest score of the match against Depew, East Aurora, and Williamsville South at Lancaster Country Club. She shot a 38! She is currently tied for first in the ECIC rankings. Allie is starting off the season where she left off at the NYS championship meet last spring.
Boys Varsity Tennis Sophomore Lucas Bush fills the leadership role of Co-Captain and plays in the 1st Singles position for the team. This week, he represented Alden in the ECIC Tournament. In the first round of 32, he beat Lancaster’s player 6-1, 6-0. His next opponent in the Sweet 16 was against West Seneca’s 1st Singles and Lucas played tough the entire match though losing to this top player in WNY. His off-season preparation and continuous improvement over the past 3 seasons has made him unbeatable in Division IV at 1st Singles helped the team achieve their 8-0 Divisional Record to clinch the Division Championship for the 3rd consecutive year. Relentless work ethic, acceptance of criticism, and competitive spirit earn him recognition as this week's Alden High School Male Athlete of the Week.
In the sectional Quarter Finals game against Depew on May 17th, 9th grader Maddy Abbott went 3 for 3 batting 1000. She also had one RBI and a triple. Since being called up to the Varsity team, Abbott has played in five games and batted 500 overall, going 9 for 18. Maddy also hit a homerun out of the park at Depew last week.
Jeremy Jeziorski does not accept second place. Repeatedly through his track and field career, he blazes down the home stretch of the 400m dash to defeat an opponent who built a supposedly insurmountable lead. His effort and drive led to his election by teammates to the captainship. On 5/8, the team faced the East Aurora Blue Devils to determine the division championship. Jeremy knew that his competitor had run a time significantly faster than his own personal record. A challenge drives Jeremy. Not only did he pass his opponent in the last leg on the way to the finish line, he set a school record in the process. Jeremy’s time of 50.25 seconds broke Kevin Jarazewski’s 24-year-old school record by almost a second. The new time is good for second best in all of Western New York’s schools, big and small. Adding to his haul this week, Jeremy also earned a first place medal in the 400m dash out of 16 teams at the Pembroke Invitational on Friday.
Over six days, in which Varsity Softball played six games, Sara Pasternack batted 565 and had an OB% of 720. Sara had four assists on pickoffs from the catcher’s position. She had sixteen RBI's, seven doubles and two triples. Sara is a 4-year starter and a captain on the Varsity Softball team and the leader on the field. She will be catching at RIT next year.
Alex Leigh was selected as a captain in both his junior and senior years on the track and field team. His work ethic and leadership has made him a role model on the team. He not only leads by example but also encourages his teammates to be their best. On 4/28, the team competed at West Seneca against 15 other schools on a rainy, cold April day. Many of these schools were from Division I (large schools). Alex earned 20 points for the Bulldogs by winning both the long jump and triple jump. Alden won the meet with 67 points. Second place finisher and host, West Seneca West, took second with 64 points. Leigh’s huge day helped power the Bulldogs to victory. On Tuesday, 5/1, Leigh was back to leading his team by sweeping the long and triple jump in addition to leading off the winning 4x100m relay team. He helped to earn the team 15 points.
Senior captain Jenna Wlostowski is a four year starter and Captain on the Varsity Softball team. Jenna over the past 3 games helped our team win 2 out of 3 games. On defense Jenna had zero errors and had 6 assists and 1 putout over these 3 games. Jenna has only 2 errors in 11 games this season. On offense Jenna went 4 for 10 and had 3 RBI's. Jenna had a batting average of 400 over the last 3 games and an OB% of 545 too.
Quinn Keller had an outstanding week as the leader of the boys track and field throwing team. On Saturday, April 20th, Quinn finished in first place at the Alexander Invitational among large school shot putters. He followed that up with a 5th place finish in the discus. Keller was also part of the 2nd place 4x100 throwers’ relay. On Tuesday, April 24th, the team competed in its opening division meet against Springville. Keller pulled in eight points for the Bulldogs. He threw his personal record in the shot put of 40’ 2.5” to take first place. In the discus throw, he finished second with a throw of 102’ 9”. Quinn is the definition of a good teammate and a leader. He helps lead practice drills and assists his teammates to achieve their personal bests.
Senior Brittany Jordon is a 4-year starter. Varsity Softball played 5 games, starting Friday against Depew 4/20 (win for Alden) and two games 4/21 Alexander Tourney (wins for Alden over Barker and Alexander) and Monday against JFK 4/23 (win for Alden) and Tuesday against Eden 4/24 (loss for Alden). Alden won 4 out of 5 games & and won the Alexander Tourney. Brittany played exceptionally during these games and is the spark that makes the offense go, with an OB% of 730 and a batting average of 611. Brittany is the lead-off hitter. She scored 17 runs, stole 10 bases and had 8 RBI's Brittany has 3 home runs this season. She was named the MVP of the Alexander Tourney.
Joshua Jeziorski is a competitor. He has been scoring points for the Varsity Track & Field team since he was a freshman. On 4/14, the team competed at Cheektowaga against a handful of other schools hardy enough to handle the below freezing wind chill. Josh provided the highlight of the meet as the anchor for the boys 4x800 meter relay. The relay team of Josh along with Jeremy Jeziorski, Matt Schuh, and David Andrzejewski, took first place in the relay after a hard push by Josh to overtake two runners (including host Cheektowaga) in the last 100 meters. Additionally, Josh teamed up with Alex Leigh to grab first place in the long jump relay. When it came time for the team to vote for captains, Josh (along with his brother Jeremy) were selected in a landslide by their teammates. He is a team-first competitor who pushes himself and his teammates to be their best.
Junior Emma Lux is a second-year Varsity Softball player who is the leader of the outfield (Center Field). After Varsity Softball's first three games of the season last week (April 2nd, 4th and 6th), she led the team in hitting with a 556 batting average. Emma had key hits in all three of these games.
ECIC champion Sean Mahaney went in with the fastest butterfly time and finished 1st over all beating his previous best time. He is seated 1st going into the class C championship. On top of all of that he was also part of the 200 medley relay that brought home a 3rd place patch and he also received a 4th place patch in the 500 free. He is Alden's only swimmer to bring home 3 patches and 1 ribbon from the meet. Not many swimmers bring home the patches as you need to place in the top 4 in each event.
Senior Captain Rachael Kueker recorded the Bulldogs 1st double double of the season Thursday night against division rival Tonawanda, scoring 12 points and collecting 12 rebounds. She also played all 32 minutes of the game as well. Rachael’s hard-working, team-first attitude is not only visible in games but every day in practice too. Rachael’s trademarks are the fact that she is consistent, smart and tough..these make her a role model and valuable asset to this year’s Varsity Girls Basketball team.
Sam Cansdale has been part of the Varsity Boys’ Swim team since the 8th grade. He has now qualified in three relays for sectionals. When our last two league meets were so critical he helped the 200 medley relay improve their time for sectionals and they placed first. He was also part of the 200 free relay that also took first and improved their sectional qualifying time. Individually, Sam won the 50 free swimming (his best time of the season), putting him in the top 10 for the Class C championship. He swam his top 100 free time placing him in the top 7 for the Class C championship. He is a captain who is well liked on the team.
Natalie Jennings had a terrific performance on January 31st, at the Airport Lanes in a match against Cleve-Hill. She had the high game of the match with a 177 and the high set for Alden with a 470. She also bowled a 176 to give her one of her best matches of the season. Her kind nature and good work ethic have made her a valuable asset to the Varsity Girls’ Bowling team. Natalie's average has improved this year by 16 points. She always has a positive attitude and gives it her all.
Alex Rzepka had an amazing week of bowling, culminating on Friday, January 19th. Alex bowled his first ever perfect game and finished the night with a 744 set. He currently leads the division with this high set of 744 and high game of 300. He is a terrific bowler, teammate, and overall person.
Junior post player Emma Diebel was an offensive force this past week leading the Bulldogs in scoring with 16 points against two very tough opponents. After a somewhat slow start due to injury, Emma has elevated her play recently to become a threat offensively and on the glass as well. Against Holland, she was given the assignment of defending one of WNY’s premier players and did an admirable job. Emma’s determined play on both ends of the floor has been a key component in the team’s elevated play as of late.
Michael Sheehan, an 8th grader and 2nd year member of the Boys’ Varsity Bowling team, had an unbelievable performance against the Maryvale Flyers on January 18th. Michael bowled a whopping 266 and helped his team win this very exciting match, giving the Flyers their first loss of the season. The match was tied after 3 games and came down to the total pin count. Michael played a huge roll in this outcome.
Cassidy Funk is a four-year member of the Girls’ Varsity Bowling team. Her competitive nature makes her a true asset to the team. This week Cassidy bowled her personal best, twice. She bowled a 204 in a match against Cheektowaga and then a 209 against Maryvale.
Ben Krysczak, at our last meet, improved his Butterfly by 3 seconds qualifying him for Class championship and also improved his Beaststroke time which has also qualified him for Class Championship. In both of these events he is only 2 seconds away from qualifying for sectionals. Ben is also part of the 3 relays that are qualified and going to sectionals this season. Ben never gave up his races last meet, sustaining a superior attitude throughout!
Sydney Skimmer, an 8th grader and 2nd year member of the Girls' Varsity Bowling Team, had her top performance of the season against the Depew Wildcats on January 11th. She bowled a 546 set with games of a 180, 218, and 148. Sydney is a valuable member of the team both with her performances and assistance to her teammates.
This is freshman Tony Cometto's second year with Rifle. He has continually worked hard and has shown great potential as he increased his scores every week. Last week we went against our rivals, the Lancaster Legends, and even though we suffered a loss to them, Tony had a high score for the match of 280 which was his personal best and puts him in the top 4 for the team overall. In addition to being a great athlete, Tony has committed himself to going to GCC and taking college courses, which shows his dedication to both Academics as well as Athletics
Carissa Fisher had one of her top performances at the Tonawanda Bowling Center on January 3rd, against the tough Tonawanda Warriors. Her high games of 201, 168, and 158 were well above her average. Carissa continues to be a valuable contributor to the Lady 'Bowl'dogs. She is a positive role model for others and a terrific teammate.
Andrew Gabalski is a 3rd year member of the Varsity Bowling Team and a valuable contributor in each match. He had a remarkable performance against Depew having the high set on the night with a 684. His games were a 245, 247, and a 192. Andrew helped lead the 'Bowl'dogs to a 6 - 1 victory over the always-tough Wildcats.
Emily Szymanski has been with the rifle team since she was in 8th grade and is now a captain of our team and consistently the top shooter. She has consistently pushed to get better, which is evident as this week she has consistently strived to get a higher score at each match this week, which there were three of. She pushes her self during every practice by staying focused and prepared every day while helping the others on the team do the same. Emily has not only succeeded on the range, but in her schoolwork as well achieving 90’s in most classes. Her work ethic shows by her dedication to become a better student and athlete.
Alex Rzepka is a valuable member of the Alden Varsity Bowling Team. As a captain, he always sets a great example for others and he assists them in improving their game. On December 12th, Alex bowled a 651 set, with a 221, 210, and a 220. His outstanding performance in the match against Depew helped lead the team to its first victory of the season. His devotion and passion for bowling make him a true asset.
Senior Jenna Wlostowski was the Alden girls basketball team’s leading scorer against undefeated Holland last week. A reluctant shooter, Jenna’s scoring was an added bonus to the many unnoticed attributes she brings to this year’s basketball team. Her knowledge of every position on offense and defense combined with her ability to get her teammates in the proper position make her an invaluable asset. Competitive, compassionate, and a natural leader, Jenna’s being selected to captain by her teammates was an obvious choice. Her positive, encouraging attitude sets a great example on how to be a great competitor and teammate.
In Alden’s first invitational at Lockport this season, Sean Mahaney was part of 2 relays which qualified for the sectional meet. He placed the highest individually with a 4th place finish in the 50 Fly. On Tuesday, Sean was a huge part of Alden’s victory against Tonawanda. He had two individual first place finishes in the 100 Fly and the 200 IM. He was also part of two relays which took first place. In his events, he qualified for sectionals in the 100 free, the 100 Fly and qualified for the class meet in his 200 IM. He is one of this season’s captains, and he leads very well by example.
Junior Maddie Gadd came off the bench on Friday, 12/1, to lead the girls Varsity Basketball team in scoring against the Pembroke Dragons with 8 points. Her strong performance earned her a start for the game against Pioneer on Saturday and once again Maddie made her presence felt. She finished second on the team in scoring with 7 points and led the team in rebounding with 6. Maddie’s fine play on both ends of the court for both games of the Alden State Bank Tip Off Tournament earned her a spot on the All-Tourney team. As a first-year Varsity participant, Maddie has been a consistent performer in the early part of the Bulldog season and should only get better as she gains valuable Varsity experience.
Jeremy Jeziorski is a Senior and Captain on the Boys Varsity Soccer Team. He is a dominant goal scorer and leads the division with 20 goals this season. He has scored critical goals in the last 5 games. This week, Jeremy put away goals against Hutch Tech (2), Riverside, Eden (3), and Lewiston Porter. His composure under pressure and dedication to yearlong self-improvement gave Alden the offensive power they needed to finish the season in 2nd place in Division 4. Jeremy’s valuable contributions to the team have earned him recognition as this week's Alden High School Male Athlete of the Week.
Leah Weisbeck is a captain and shows great leadership and motivation for her teammates. She switched from being a flyer for 3 years into being a base for her final year. This was a difficult transition which she willingly accepted and is working at improving in this new role.
Not many teams have a weapon like Christian Snell to move around the gridiron like a chess piece. To help his team stop Newfane’s triple option, Snell lined up as a defensive end this week. After tying for the team lead in tackles with eight, you wouldn’t know that it was his first time playing the position in his school career. Two of those tackles were for a loss and one was a sack.
Offensively, Snell has been the most dangerous receiver in the league. On Saturday, September 30th, his stat line would be the envy of any NFL receiver. He caught nine passes for 142 yards and two touchdowns. Many of these catches were the result of pure athleticism and willpower, jumping up above two or more defenders to grab the ball at its high point.
Snell’s season already sits at fifth on the all-time single season receiving list. With another 211 yards, he will take over the number one spot on the all-time list.
Emma Wlostowski is one of three captains for Alden’s varsity volleyball program which began its season with a 9-1 record. Emma is an outside hitter who is responsible for not only attacking offensively, but defensively she passes the ball the most as well. Emma’s on-court awareness and versatility make her an offensive nightmare to opposing teams because she can attack the ball with power or finesse. Her high skill level of play sets the standards for the rest of the team. Through 11 games, Emma accounted for 101 kills (2nd on team) and 74 digs (team high). Emma is a perfect example of a captain, she always puts the team first, and is willing to help anyone.
Christian Frank is a senior captain on the varsity golf team. He leads by example and is always willing to help out his teammates. This week he led the team to a victory against Tonawanda shooting a 43. He was also the medalist at the match against Amherst with another 43. This helped the team score their lowest of the season….a 284!
This past weekend Sarah Golas won the Victor Invitational. She took 1st out of a field of 50. She was the fastest female of the day. By taking first she put herself and her teammates in a great position to claim the first place TEAM Trophy. She lead the race the entire time and dominated the field.
Justin Evoy is a Junior on the Boys Varsity Soccer Team. He is a dominant goal keeper who coordinates a solid defense in front of him. His composure under pressure and dedication to yearlong self-improvement earned shutouts vs. Akron and Oracle-Maritime to help his team win the Amherst Tournament. Another big shutout vs. Holland is a key reason the team is starting with a 6-2 record. Justin’s valuable contributions to the team have earned him recognition as this week's Alden High School Male Athlete of the Week.
Junior Shelby Kersten is one of the main reasons the varsity volleyball team has started the year with 6 wins and only 1 loss. Shelby is the starting outside/middle of the Bulldogs and is leading the team in kills and blocks. Through 7 games, Shelby has racked up 58 kills and 15 blocks. She is a very versatile player who is playing two positions, depending on the rotation she is in throughout the game. This unique ability shows her thorough knowledge of the game and her true athleticism. In addition, Shelby has been playing club volleyball for the NFVB club for the past two years where she travels on weekends competing with the area’s best talent. She has a very bright future ahead of her.
It was a Don Beebe-Super Bowl XVII type moment. The Roy-Hart runner sprinted down the far sideline. Chasing the kickoff returner from behind for 40+ yards, the Alden quarterback—Bryan Cybulski—caught up, bringing the ball carrier down on the 10-yard line. This type of unrelenting, uncompromising attitude has made Cybulski a leader on the football team. On Thursday, September 7th, Cybulski accumulated five tackles. Offensively, he was the team leader. He ran for 151 yards on nine carries with two touchdowns. He threw for an additional 177 yards and was nine of 14 through the air with another score. When your quarterback physically lays it on the line for his team, every other member of the team plays with an extra sharp edge.
Sara O'Connor is deserving of this week’s Athlete of the Week for leading the team to victories this week in her defensive play. The lady Bulldogs only allowed one goal against in three games. Sara also scored two goals this week and led the team to a victory over Holland when Alden traveled there. The team won three games in a row in a three day stretch!!
Jordan took first place in the high jump on Monday, May 15th at Maryvale and again, on Tuesday, May 16th at Depew. Though he was fighting illness, he ran the longest race on the track (the two mile) and scored a key second place finish for the Bulldogs. Servos has been a four-year member of the track and field team. He has been a mentor to our high jumpers for two years, working with the athletes to solidify a key event for the team. He also willingly jumps at the opportunity to run some of the toughest events, the 3200m run and the steeplechase. Jordan has taken first place in the high jump at every single dual meet this year.
Anne Kocher is a Senior, Captain and 3-year starter. She had 1 of the 2 hits against Depew in the B1 Championship game and played solid defense making 7 big plays. On Offense, Anne had an OB% of 833 tops on the team getting on base 5 out of 7 times. Anne also hit a triple in the Sectional game against City Honors to help Alden's team defeat City Honors for the 3rd year in a row in the Semi Finals.
Boys Varsity Tennis Senior Captains, Everett Gilbert and Dylan Kiener, just capped off their regular season with a win over Tonawanda at 1st Doubles and 5-0 team score. As a pair, the team has not been beat in a divisional match in the past two seasons. Their tremendous effort and consistency has helped earn the Boys Tennis Team back-to-back Divisional Championships. Earlier in the week, they beat Springville in a close two sets (6-4, 70-5) that gave Alden a 5-0 win and beat their Eden opponents (6-2, 6-0). Top notch leadership, acceptance of criticism, and competitive spirit earn them recognition as this week's Alden High School Male Athletes of the Week.
Cookie Altieri set three personal records for the year on her last dual meet of her high school career. High Jump -5'2" which is a state height.
Long jump- 16'0" Tripled Jumped - 33'10". All three events qualified her for the sectional meet. With this performance, Alden was victorious over Depew.
Tom Bednarski, Jr. – Varsity Baseball Pitcher/DH in Monday’s game against East Aurora, Tommy pitched a complete game 2-hitter with 16 strikeouts. He also had two hits. Against Cheektowaga he had 2 hits and 4 RBI. Tommy has had an outstanding season and is one of three team captains.
Junior Captain and two a time division 4 first team All Star, Jenna Wlostowski had a sensational three-game stretch for the Lady Bulldogs Softball Team. Jenna had zero errors on defense over the three games. On offense she helped lead the team to 2 wins out of three games. She had hits in all three games. Jenna batted 555 and had an OB% of 666. She had 6 RBIs over that span and a home run against Cheektowaga. Jenna is a three year starter and a warrior on this team!
TIM PELLITTIERI; SR.; VARSITY BASEBALL
IN TWO GAMES, TIM BATTED .571 ( 4 for 7); SCORES 4 RUNS AND DROVE IN 3 RUNS. DEFENSIVELY, TIM HAS BEEN OUTSTANDING, THROWING OUT 90% OF BASERUNNERS ATTEMPTING TO STEAL. A PERFECT EXAMPLE OF TIMS ATTITUDE AND EFFORT WAS IN THE 7Th INNING OF OUR STARPOINT GAME, AN ERRANT THROW WENT BY THE FIRST BASEMAN AND WITH HIS HUSTLE TIM BACKED UP THE THROW AND THREW THE RUNNER OUT GOING TO SECOND. TIM IS A GREAT LEADER AND ONE OF THREE CAPTAINS OF THE TEAM.
Achievements: Senior Olivia Palizay is being nominated for Athlete of the Week for excellent play on offense and Defense during our 2 wins over Starpoint 7 to 5 and Pioneer 9 to 0. Olivia made 4 catches in Centerfield against Starpoint, 2 were outstanding golden glove plays. Olivia has been our leader in the outfield this season. On Offense Olivia went 3 for 5 during those two games. She had a 600 batting avg. Olivia also had an OB% of 714 during that span. Olivia has helped our team achieve a record of 9 wins and 2 losses on the season because of her experience as a 2 year Varsity Softball Athlete.
Boys Tennis Senior and Captain Timothy Tur is leading the team to a remarkable season. His dominant play at 1st Singles has earned the undefeated team a 7 match win streak. He has beat his opponents in the division: Springville (6-0, 6-1), Cleve Hill (6-0, 6-0), Tonawanda (6-0, 6-0) and JFK (6-0, 6-0). He also took on Clarence’s best player and battled back to win in 3 sets (4-6, 6-1, 6-4) to give the team an impressive win over a tough Division 1 team. Tim’s impressive work ethic, excellent attitude, and desire to help the entire team improve earned him the honor of this week's Alden High School Male Athlete of the Week.
Sara, Captain of the team, led us to a victory over Springville this Tuesday. She led the team in scoring placing 2nd in the 100 meter dash with a personal record of 13:53, 1st in the long jump-personal record with a 16'2.5" which is a qualification jump for sectionals, 1st in the Pole Vault. - Personal record of 10' which qualifies her for the State Meet. She was anchor for the 4x100 relay team that ran 53.01-best time of the year so far.
Bryan Cybulski - Varsity Baseball- Jr.
In two games, Bryan had 5 hits drove in 4 runs and scored 4 runs. He's been asked to play a new position (shortstop) and has done a great job . Bryan is also a captain. Congratulations Bryan!
Brooke Strausbaugh had a batting average of 400 over the 3 games against Newfane , Depew and Cheektowaga. She had key hits in the win over the Warriors.
On the mound Brooke pitched all 3 games over a 5 day period. Brooke struck out 27 batters in the 3 games. Which puts her career total up to 160 K’s. Brooke’s ERA is 1.67 so far this season. She has helped guide the Softball team to a 3 wins and 1 loss on the season thus far. She has pitched all 4 games this season. Congratulations Brooke.
Owen Kissell won the class B championship at 120 last Saturday, 2/4 at Cheektowaga. He won his three matches by pin. He will compete this weekend on 2/11 at the state qualifier tournament at the Salamanca Convention Center.
Ally has been a dedicated member of this team for the past few years, participating in both Fall and Winter seasons. She helps teach her teammates proper stunting techniques and always works her hardest. She has switched positions on the team in order to go where she was needed, and has done so with enthusiasm.
Josh Chester scored a career high 14 points and chipped in a career high 9 rebounds as well. Josh is a senior and one of the leaders on the basketball team. He brings a very high level of intensity, heart and determination to each and every practice and game.
Junior Syd Thompson had a career night on Tuesday against Eden and her team needed every bit of her efforts as they had to go to overtime to earn a 53-51 victory. Syd was the leading scorer with 14 points [she scored 6 of the teams 10 pts. in overtime.]She also led the team in rebounding with 10 [8 on the offensive glass] and an incredible 9 steals [the team had 14]. Syd’s efforts were instrumental in the Bulldogs comeback from a 11 point halftime deficit to pull out a much needed victory. Syd practices hard every day and it translates to success on game days. This season she either is 1st or 2nd in every major statistical category on the team. A 2-year starter and only a junior, Syd unselfish play and tireless work ethic sets her up for many more future successes! Congrats, Syd!
This week’s athlete of the week is Sam Cansdale from the swim team. Sam is a freshman and a sprint swimmer for our team. He bring new drills and strategies to the team to always help us improve. Sam has been a part of three relay teams that has already qualified for the Section VI championship, the 200 Medley relay, 200 free relay and the 400 free relay. Individually he has qualified for the Class C championship in 2 individual races the 50 free with a time of: 24.79, and the 100 free, 54.86. Sam’s two individual times and the 200 free relay qualified for championship meets just during our last meet against Tonawanda. As our swim season comes to an end within these next two weeks, Coach Bennett is proud of Sam’s talents and how they shined the last couple dual meets. As a freshman, Sam will only get better and stronger through his high school years. Nice job Sam and Good luck to the boys swim team as they compete in the three championship meets.
Anne Kocher is a 4 year member and 3 year starter for the girls varsity basketball team. On Monday versus JFK , Anne did what she does best and that is nailing the 3 pointer. She connected on 3 from downtown, giving her 12 on the season, far and away the leader on the team. While her marksmanship from the floor is relied on heavily, her intangibles are just as important to the team. Leadership and competitiveness are qualities she has demonstrated throughout her career and those qualities led to Anne being named to captain by her teammates for the second consecutive year.
Congratulations to Adam Wood for an outstanding performance on January 18th, in a bowling match against Cheektowaga. Adam had the high game and high set of the match with a 237 and a 625 set. Each week, he continues to work hard and improve his game. He is a co-captain and an extremely valuable member of the team. Terrific job, Adam.
Emily Szymanski has been with the rifle team since she was in 8th grade. She has consistently pushed to get better, which is evident as this week she had the highest combined score during a match in many years by any athlete. She pushes herself during every practice by staying focused and prepared every day. Emily has not only succeeded on the range, but in her schoolwork as well achieving 90’s in most classes. Her work ethic shows by her dedication to become a better student and athlete.
Nick King has been with the Rifle team since he was a freshman. He has continued to make strides each year, which has now put him in the top 4 shooters for every match this year. He has been focused during practice and continually trying to be the best athlete he can be. In addition to rifle, Nick also is an athlete with football and is a reporter for WACS news. His commitment to the team and his school is shown through his participation in every event, the extra help he seeks out, and his willingness to do anything to help the team as a whole. He is an integral part of our team.
Cailyn Bennett has been with the Rifle Team for many years and has consistently proven herself to be a strong athlete with the focus and determination that will allow her to succeed at anything. This year she has consistently been in the top 4-5 shooters for each match and has participated in every match and been at every practice. She is the co-captain this year for her passion and continued determination to help the team be the best it can be. She is an inspiration to the rest of the team every day. Cailyn also is extremely involved with other organizations and sports at the school including the National Honor Society. Her academics are outstanding which shows how dedicated she is to being the best she can be.
Andrew Gabalski had a great performance on December 27th at the Festival of Lights Bowling Tournament. The Bulldogs traveled to the Tonawanda Bowling Center and competed against 23 other teams. Andrew started the morning session with a 205, 211, and 209. He averaged a 188 for the day after bowling 6 games. His scores helped to land Alden in 10th place out of the 24 teams that participated. Congratulations, Andrew!
Veronica Froman- Varsity Cheerleading Freshman Veronica Froman is dedicated to improving as a cheerleader and pushes herself to becoming a better athlete. She is a great team player and helps motivate her fellow teammates.
This week’s athlete of the week is Ryan Mahaney from the swim team. Ryan is a senior and an all around swimmer for our team. He is our team captain and his dedication to his sport truly shows. Ryan has been a part of two relay teams that has already qualified for the Section VI championship, the 200 medley relay and the 400 free relay. Individually he has qualified for the Section VI championship in 2 individual races the 200 IM with a time of 2:14.65, and the 100 fly. His 100 fly time is :59.97 which he did Wednesday against Eden. The words of encouragement I hear him give his team mates makes me proud to have him as part of our team. The boys swim season is really just starting and according to Coach Bennett, Ryan’s times will only improve. Good luck to Ryan and the boys swim team as they continue this season.
Hannah Minard-Varsity Cheerleading
As a captain of the Varsity Cheer team, Hannah continuously models good sportsmanship and teamwork. She always tries her hardest and goes above and beyond what is expected of her.
Owen Kissell won the Batavia wrestling tournament outscoring opponents 42-0. Owen also won Most Outstanding Wrestler of the tournament and is currently 7-0 on the season.
Junior guard Syd Thompson scored a career high 15 pts.
Monday night against visiting Holland. The Bulldogs needed every one of those points to secure a thrilling victory over a Holland team they haven’t beaten in seven years. A 2- year starter, Syd also led the team in rebounding with 6. Her contributions didn’t end there. She had 3 steals as well, none bigger than the one in the closing seconds of the game with her team clinging to a 1 point lead. She connected on 1 of her 2 foul shots providing the final margin of victory 44-42 for the Bulldogs. Syd is a humble, tireless worker on both ends of the court whose only desire is to help her team win. After a successful sophomore season, Syd ‘s ceiling for success is limitless, due to her hardworking, team first attitude.
This week’s athlete of the week is Sean Mahaney from the swim team. Sean is a junior and a distance swimmer for our team. He has worked hard and it is finally paying off. Sean has been a part of one relay team that has already qualified for the Section VI championship the 200 medley relay. Individually he has qualified for the Section VI championship in 3 individual races the 200 free, 50 free and the 100 free. He has qualified for the Class C championship for his 500 free. All of this has been accomplished in our first two meets. In our last meet against Amherst where the boys almost beat a team of 18 guys with their 7, Sean earned his team 3 first place finishes (including relays) and one second place finish in the 100 fly an event he doesn’t always get to swim. Sean is a true leader who definitely leads by example.
Cookie Altieri is off to a fast start, in this her senior year. In last weeks’ Alden State Bank Tournament she scored 27 pts. and collected 20 rebounds to lead her team in both categories. Her efforts earned her all- tournament honors for the second consecutive year. This week she picked right up where she left off, spearheading Aldens’ 4th quarter comeback versus Roy-Hart. In this contest Cookie paced the Bulldogs in scoring with 18 pts., 13 in the 2nd half, when her team needed them the most. Her 17 rebounds were indicative of her dominance inside. Thursday against Lackawanna, she continued her torrid pace on the boards grabbing a career high 19 caroms. Her 9 pts. were good for 2nd on the team. The only thing that prevented her from her 4th consecutive double digit scoring game was limited playing time as the Bulldogs were cruising to victory. Cookie’s play will be instrumental to the teams’ success as the team progresses through the season.
It takes guts to play cornerback. Riley Pastuszynski has guts in high supply. Tasked with defending the opposing team’s top receiving threat on a week to week basis, Riley is often on an island in one-on-one coverage. Not once has he ever shied away from this responsibility. He has done an outstanding job of limiting the opponent’s passing attack all season long.
On Friday, October 21st, the Alden Bulldogs traveled to Olean to take on the Huskies in the first round of the playoffs. Olean returned the opening kickoff to the Bulldog 25-yard line. Seven plays later, they put up the first score of the game and took a 7-0 lead. Three plays later, the Bulldogs responded with a score of their own. Riley streaked down the far sideline, running to catch up with the heave from quarterback Bryan Cybulski. Riley just beat his defender, secured the catch, and outran the Olean defense for a 58-yard touchdown. He finished with three catches for 103 yards.
Riley is also the team’s placekicker. He made both of his extra points on the day and hasn’t missed a single extra point kick since the first week of the season (92% success rate).
The game was tied at halftime (14-14). Late in the third quarter, Riley’s number was called to put the Bulldogs ahead. He nailed a 22-yard field goal to give Alden a three-point lead that would hold until the last two minutes of the game.
This past Friday Savannah Warner ran one of her last Invitational for Alden High School. Savannah has been a varsity starter for five straight years and has been a leader on and off the field. This past Friday Savannah ran her best race of the year. The cold and rain could not stop her. Despite slipping into a gully, she was able to pull herself out and continue the race. She placed 2nd in a the 3.1 mile race with a time of 20:27. Her leadership was what the lady bulldogs needed to place 1st overall in the Alexander invitational.
Owen Kissell is a junior on the Boys Varsity Soccer Team. Owen is a central defender and a critical piece of the defensive leadership of the team. Against Albion, in the sectional pre-Quarter Final, Owen led the defense to a shut-out 1-0 victory. While missing another starting defender and working to develop a sophomore goal keeper in his first varsity start, Owen led the implementation of a new formation designed to improve the success against tough teams in the sectional playoffs. This requires high levels of confidence, trust, and communication to be successful. Owen’s leadership throughout the season and especially in this critical game make him this week's Alden High School Male Athlete of the Week.
Sophomore Shelby Kersten is one of the main reasons the varsity volleyball team has started the year with 9 wins and 1 loss only. Shelby is the starting middle of the bulldogs and is leading the team in kills and blocks. Through 12 games Shelby has racked up 122 kills and 65 blocks. In addition, Shelby plays volleyball at the NFVB club for the 17-1’s travel team, a year above her age level. This young lady has a very bright future ahead of her.
Curtis Petschke led the team to it's first division championship since 2009. He also shot well at ECICs which qualified him for Sectionals in the Spring. Curtis was again this year the only one in our division to qualify for sectionals!
Mekenna Walter is a senior and a captain of the cheer team. She is always enthusiastic and supportive of her teammates. She works very hard to be the best athlete and takes constructive criticism well. She does all of this with a smile
Lightning-fast Christian Snell has been leaving would-be tacklers grasping at air since he first laced up the cleats. This season, he leads the Alden Bulldogs Varsity Football team with 67 points scored and is the main offensive weapon in their arsenal.
Going up against the number one ranked large school in New York State is no easy task. On Friday, September 30th, the Bulldogs took on Canisius High School for their Homecoming game. The Bulldogs demonstrated grit, resolve, and refusal to quit. Christian led the team in this respect. Halfway through the fourth quarter, Snell got the Bulldogs on the board with a 76-yard touchdown run. He finished the night with 127 yards on 21 carries.
Carly Hopcia- Varsity Cheerleading
As a captain on the cheer team, Carly has a positive attitude and strong work ethic. She is always helping out her teammates and providing a good example of what it means to be a role model.
Nathan Nuwer (Varsity Boys Soccer)
Nathan Nuwer is a senior and captain for the Boys Varsity Soccer Team. Three divisional games and 3 game winning goals sums up Nate’s performance in the past week. Against Holland, Nate scored a hat trick plus an assist in the 4-1 victory. At Springville, he assisted in the overtime goal for the 2-1 win. Finally, Nate scored the game winner against Eden to clinch the 2-0 win and move the Bulldogs into 2nd place with an incredible 10-2 overall record. Nathan’s leadership throughout the season and especially in recent critical games make him this week's Alden High School Male Athlete of the Week.
Anna Dussault (Varsity Volleyball)
Senior Anna Dussault is one of three captains for Alden’s varsity volleyball program that began their season with a 8-1 record. Anna is a setter in the back row and a right side hitter when she rotates to the front row. Anna’s versatility to play all positions demonstrates her true athleticism and knowledge of the game. Her high skill level of play sets the standards for the rest of the team. In a six match span, Anna accounted for 88 assists (team high) and 27 kills (3rd on team). Anna is a perfect example of a captain, she always puts the team first, and is willing to help anyone.
Jeremy Jeziorski (Boys Varsity Soccer)
Jeremy Jeziorski is a Junior and starting striker on the Boys Varsity Soccer Team. He scored a goal and two assists against St. Mary’s this week and has earned a point in almost every game so far this season. While he credits the team behind him for the sustained offensive attack, his aggressive style of play and generosity with scoring opportunities for teammates is critical to the team’s success and current record of 8 wins and 2 losses. Jeremy’s exemplary performance throughout the season and especially in recent critical games make him this week's Alden High School Male Athlete of the Week.
Martin (Girls Varsity Soccer)
Freshman Emma Martin has stepped on to the varsity soccer team and proven to play an integral role in the success of the team’s defense. This week she was tasked with shutting down the division’s best player. Emma did a tremendous job limiting the opponent’s chances. Emma is a smart player who uses her physicality and vision of the field to help prevent opponents from scoring. She is part of a defense that has shut out opponents three times, and has only allowed 10 goals against all season.
Next to the word football in the Alden High School dictionary is a picture of Brandon Windnagle. The single-minded pursuit of excellence on the gridiron is the hallmark of Windnagle’s game. He won’t be outworked or “out-toughed” by anybody on the field. Teammates are family to him and he will stop at nothing to protect them. As the team’s starting fullback and middle linebacker, Brandon plays two positions most often associated with hard-nosed football. On Friday night, September 9th, at Albion High School, Brandon made the play that turned the game around when he picked off an Albion pass and returned it 47 yards for a touchdown. It was late in the second quarter and the Bulldogs were in a tight ballgame separated by two points. The score turned out to be the difference maker in the Bulldog victory. In addition, Windnagle tied for the team lead in tackles with 10. Brandon’s leadership and work ethic represent the very best qualities of an Alden Bulldog.