Seniors Bill Stroby, Dan Shannon, Joe Hartman and Joe Porpora are being counted on to help Holy Spirit make a run at the conference and state football championships this year. Spirit is ranked #22 in the South Jersey preseason poll by the Philadelphia Inquirer.
Peter Mora, who retired last year as president of Atlantic Cape Community College, was honored last week at the Stanley W. Marczyk Scholarship Dinner. Mora, Jimmy Mogan and Andy Solari were all stellar athletes in the Holy Spirit Class of 1961. All are members of the Holy Spirit Hall of Fame and standouts in their chosen professions and community service.
Former New York Jets GM Terry Bradway (Holy Spirit) is heading south to participate in the NFL draft as the lead scout for the Miami Dolphins. He has traveled the country evaluating college players. He gave me an interesting insight into how he weighs the strengths and weaknesses of each player before making his final recommendations to the GM and his staff. Terry loves his job and is very good at it.
Turning back the pages to …
1958: Jim Crane accepted the third-place trophy for the Seahorse Pier of Brigantine in the Greater Atlantic City Fast Pitch Softball Tournament. Cal Miller was the Most Valuable Pitcher. He bested Sid Faulkner 1-0 in 10 innings as his Leeks of Egg Harbor City defeated Wimberg's in a thriller. Umpire Joe Bonanni worked an excellent game behind the plate. (Seahorse Pier was located at the tip of the north end of the Island. In 1976 it was converted into the famous Brigantine Haunted Castle managed by the recently deceased Sandy Battaglini. The site was later destroyed by fire and never rebuilt.)
1981: Conference champs Holy Spirit had four players named to the first team Press Football All Stars including offensive lineman Steve Jones and Paul Marrandino, linebacker Marty Weatherby and defensive back A.J. Russo (present head coach of the Spartans). Jim Gallagher of Spirit was named Coach of the Year. He guided Spirit to an 8-1-1 record, including a 15-7 win over Mainland Regional, the top-rated team in the tri-state area. Following the win, it seemed like the whole school returned to 27th Street in Brigantine for a massive celebration.
2013: Junior Bucky Amend was named the most productive hitter on that year’s Absegami baseball team. The selection was made using a complex list of hitting statistics that grades each category of hitting to arrive at the award. (Bucky also scintillated in football for the Braves. He is currently home from La Salle University recuperating from surgery.)
2015: Holy Spirit entered the Non-Public Playoffs with a 9-16 record. On June 6, the Spartans beat Newark Academy 9-4 to win their first state baseball championship in 33 years and turn the “Impossible Dream” theme into “We are the Champions.” Sophomore Billy Kral limited the favored home team to one run in six innings to get the win. Hot-hitting Tommy Burns scored two runs. Stopper Jules Massella ended a Newark seventh-inning rally by striking out the final hitter.
Thought for the day
Children become successful athletes through encouragement not criticism.