12/11/14 9:10am
12/11/2014 9:10 AM

Horses killed Manorville Center Moriches

Suffolk County police are on the lookout for two horses that somehow escaped a Wading River Road ranch in Manorville early Thursday, according to a release.

One other horse from the same ranch was killed after being struck by a 2005 Peterbilt tractor trailer traveling eastbound on Sunrise Highway in Center Moriches, about one half mile west of Exit 59, police said.


11/09/13 4:30pm
11/09/2013 4:30 PM

BILL LANDON PHOTO | Shoreham-Wading River senior Tyler Anderson scored five touchdowns in Saturday’s playoff win over Center Moriches.


More than anything, it was a testament to the offensive firepower of Shoreham-Wading River’s football team and Tyler Anderson’s running ability.

To put things in perspective, Center Moriches is not a bad offensive team itself, with several weapons to draw upon. So, perhaps a shootout was inevitable in the Suffolk County Division IV qualifying round game on Saturday in Shoreham. The statistics put up were video game-esque. Just look at them: A total of 85 points were scored. Over 1,100 yards of offense were registered. The Wildcats picked up 504 of those yards on the ground alone. Their star running back, Tyler Anderson, ran for 401 yards himself and scored five touchdowns.

Incredible numbers.

Of course, the numbers that counted most favored the Wildcats, who on their record day picked up their second career playoff win, 56-29. It was the most points the Wildcats have ever scored in the six playoff games they have played in their history. Now the fourth-seeded Wildcats (7-2) want to set another team record — for the most playoff wins in a year. To do that, they will have to upset No. 1 Babylon (9-0), the defending Long Island champion, when the teams play in a county semifinal Friday night. No easy task. Babylon defeated the Wildcats, 36-14, on Sept. 20.

But Saturday was Shoreham’s day.

No one had a bigger game — and more gaudier numbers — than Anderson. The senior was handed the ball 27 times, ran for four touchdowns (including as 78-yarder to help cap the scoring) and caught a 19-yard pass for another touchdown. He also had scoring runs of 36, 32 and 18 yards. In addition, he had 51 receiving yards from two catches.

Three of the five completions by Shoreham’s quarterback, Danny Hughes, went for touchdowns, two by Isreal Squires (two catches, 84 yards). Hughes also ran for a touchdown and had 92 yards on nine carries.

Following Anderson’s first touchdown of the day, a surprise onside kick by Shoreham’s Zack MacAuley was recovered by teammate Daniel Smith. Two plays later, Hughes hooked up on a 48-yard connection for Squires’ second touchdown. MacAuley’s extra point — one of a school-record eight for him in the game — with 5 minutes 32 seconds left in the first quarter, made the score 21-8.

The Wildcats were off and running. They generated 658 yards worth of offense.

Center Moriches (6-3), which came off a 1-7 season, picked up most of its 446 yards through the air. Tyrell Thomas threw for 288 yards and two touchdowns from 14-of-22 passing. Tarik Rountree (nine catches, 126 yards) caught two of those touchdown passes and John-Cody Cerverizzo (three catches, 136 yards) pulled in the other.

Herbert Plummer (seven carries, 88 yards) took a lateral and darted around the left side 53 yards for Center Moriches’ first touchdown. A Thomas pass to Cerverizzo for the 2-point conversion gave the Red Devils a brief 8-7 lead. It lasted 65 seconds before an Anderson touchdown dash put the Wildcats ahead to stay. The Wildcats produced touchdowns on their first three possessions.

Center Moriches, which has reached the playoffs four times in six years, has yet to experience a playoff win. Their cause wasn’t helped by five turnovers. Shoreham, which has won five of its last six games, did not turn the ball over once.

Chris Rosati recovered two fumbles for the Wildcats and Brennan Gorman came up with another one. Rosati also intercepted a pass, as did Squires. Aaron Harley-Rey led the team with 8 tackles, 5 of them solo.

Thomas made 9 tackles and defended three passes for Center Moriches.


09/20/13 11:10pm
09/20/2013 11:10 PM
GARRET MEADE PHOTO | Reggie Archer, who ran for 116 yards, scored Bishop McGann-Mercy's first touchdown of the season.

GARRET MEADE PHOTO | Reggie Archer, who ran for 116 yards, scored Bishop McGann-Mercy’s first touchdown of the season.


Call them playmakers. That is what the Center Moriches High School football team has. Tyrell Thomas, Tarik Rountree, Zachary Brady. They all have the ability to make a big gain on any play.

That big-play ability was shown Friday night when the Red Devils, coming off a 1-7 season, brought their record to 2-0 in Suffolk County Division IV with a 24-6 defeat of visiting Bishop McGann-Mercy.

McGann-Mercy’s rushing defense did well, holding Center Moriches to 91 yards on the ground. It was in the air, though, where Center Moriches did most of its damage.

Thomas threw for three touchdowns, passing for 199 yards. Rountree was on the receiving end of 110 yards worth of those passes, two for touchdowns, giving him four for the young season. Brady caught the other touchdown pass.

Center Moriches was ahead, 24-0, by the time McGann-Mercy scored its first points of the season. Reggie Archer powered his way across the goal line from three yards out 1 minute 21 seconds into the fourth quarter. Archer ran for 116 yards on 26 carries.

K. J. Santacroce twice stopped Center Moriches drives by picking off passes.

08/07/12 12:54am
08/07/2012 12:54 AM

GARRET MEADE PHOTO | Shoreham-Wading River’s Greg Canelly, right, scored the Wildcats’ second goal against Center Moriches from a direct free kick.

The way the summer has gone for the Shoreham-Wading River varsity boys soccer team, one goal would have been enough. But the Wildcats got two, just in case.

Two first-half tallies and another superior defensive effort propelled Shoreham-Wading River to a 2-0 victory over Center Moriches in the Town of Brookhaven Summer League small schools championship game Monday evening at Diamond in the Pines Park in Coram. The win improved the Wildcats’ summer record to 11-0-1, with all 11 victories coming on shutouts.

“The defense has been playing great all summer,” said Shoreham-Wading River coach Andrew Moschetti, lauding the defensive work of players like Anthony Cusano, Garrett Budney, Travis Qualley, Michael McDonnell and Vincent Alese, along with goaltenders Evan Kearney and Adam Pietrowski, who have split time in the nets.

“The guys in the back, with the two keepers, to only give up two goals all season? That’s a pretty solid defense,” Moschetti added. “They say defense wins championships. So it seems to work.”

The victory pushes Shoreham-Wading River into the overall Brookhaven championship game Wednesday against Sachem North, which defeated Northport, 1-0, in the large schools title game. Wednesday’s game will be at 6:15 p.m. at Diamond in the Pines, and the winner of that game will face the Town of Babylon champion Thursday at St. Joseph’s College.

GARRET MEADE PHOTO | Matthew O’Gorman of Shoreham-Wading River rose above the crowd for a header.

Moschetti expected the Wildcats to be good this summer, thanks to nine returning varsity starters and 14 seniors — just maybe not along the lines of 31 goals for and only two allowed in 12 games. “I didn’t know what to expect during the summer, but they’ve all been playing great,” he said. “I’ve been waiting for these guys to come up since they were freshmen, and now they’re starting to jell together, and it’s senior year, you know. They’re older now, they know the game, they know each other, and it’s showing on the field.”

Shoreham won the Brookhaven small schools regular-season championship by finishing 8-0-1, the only blemish a 2-2 tie with Mattituck in the third game. That turned out to be the only game in which the Wildcats allowed any goals.

Shoreham-Wading River advanced to the small schools title game with a 2-0 playoff win over Bayport-Blue Point, followed by a 1-0 win over Miller Place in the semifinals. Center Moriches blanked Southold and Eastport/South Manor in its two playoff games by identical 1-0 scores.

The Wildcats dominated possession in Monday’s final against Center Moriches, limiting the opposition to only a handful of chances and even fewer shots that were actually on net.

Shoreham-Wading River opened the scoring with 12 minutes left in the first half when Charles DeMaio scored off a cross from William Mileski. Three minutes later, Greg Canelly fired a direct kick from 25 yards out past Center Moriches keeper Jeff Carpenter, and the Wildcats led at halftime, 2-0.

The second half saw more outstanding defense by the Wildcats. Pietrowski made two solid saves, and Cusano foiled another Center Moriches scoring opportunity by running down an attacker midway through the half.

Moschetti noted that the small schools title is the first won by the Shoreham-Wading River boys in his four seasons coaching the summer team; he won a summer title previously coaching the Shoreham girls. He said while winning is “great,” it’s not what the summer season is about.

“I never really stress winning in the summer,” he said. “It’s more of an opportunity for the kids to keep playing together, for me to see some of the younger kids who didn’t play varsity last year. That’s really the emphasis.”

That said, winning a summer title is a just reward for the hard work the team has put in the past three months.

“It’s a good feeling; the kids are excited,” Moschetti said. “They’ve been playing well, they’ve been training hard in the summer, working their butts off. The seniors have had them running twice a week at the track, kind of knowing that we might have something special here, and they want to be prepared for the [fall] season.”

09/09/11 10:59pm
09/09/2011 10:59 PM

JOHN NEELY PHOTO | Wayne Harris of Center Moriches found the end zone on a six-yard run for the game's first score despite the efforts of Bishop McGann-Mercy's Pat Stepnoski.

What happens when friends coach against each other?

What else? A fight breaks out.

They had been in the same huddle before as teammates and on the same football sideline before as coaches, but Friday night marked a first for both Jeff Doroski and Steve Failla. For the first time, they faced each other on opposing sidelines as head coaches, Doroski of the Bishop McGann-Mercy Monarchs and Failla of the Center Moriches Red Devils.

The game must have prompted mixed emotions for coaches on both staffs. Failla was the best man at Doroski’s wedding and is the godfather to Doroski’s son. Not only that, but they were both teammates at Mercy, as was one of the Center Moriches assistant coaches, Craig Rupprecht. All three are Mercy Class of 1992 graduates. On top of all of that, Failla and Rupprecht are both former Monarchs coaches themselves.

And, as if that story line isn’t tangled enough, a McGann-Mercy assistant coach, Phil Lombardi, is a another former Mercy player who had served as a Center Moriches assistant coach for five years before coming to the Monarchs this year.

Finally, to add even more spice to the season-opening Suffolk County Division IV game at Center Moriches High School, it just happened to be Doroski’s debut as a varsity head coach.

“Me, Steve and Craig, we go back a long ways,” Doroski said. “Yeah, we’re close. We go to barbecues at each other’s house, and they’ll be at my daughter’s baptism in two weeks and stuff like that.”

No doubt, there will be some talk during that occasion about what happened on Friday night. Myles Bell ran for touchdowns on his first two carries as Center Moriches rolled, 32-14, spoiling Doroski’s debut. The game was interrupted for about 20 minutes when a fight broke out 4:22 into the third quarter. Coaches rushed on to the field to separate players. A game official took a fall during the flurry and was quickly helped to his feet by McGann-Mercy’s Pat Stepnoski. After order was restored, Jack Strnad of McGann-Mercy and Wayne Harris of Center Moriches were ejected. The ejections carry automatic one-game suspensions.

JOHN NEELY PHOTO | Bishop McGann-Mercy's Rudfil Paul Jr. swatted away a pass intended for Center Moriches' Mario Mayen in the end zone.

Stepnoski said he wasn’t sure what prompted the fists to fly.

“I just turned around, and there was a big group of everybody fighting,” he said. “It kept going and going and going. I didn’t know what was happening.”

Failla said: “I couldn’t tell you who hit who and how it started, but everyone’s got to walk away, and our guy certainly didn’t walk away. They got learn, it’s a selfish act in an unselfish game that’s very unforgiving.”

Similarly, Doroski voiced his disapproval of the fisticuffs.

“It’s just frustrations got out of hand,” he said. “You never want to see anything like that. We just reacted to something that we don’t need to react to. We’re better than that. We represent something else out here, and that’s not what we represent.”

Both teams will feel the absence of those players. Strnad is a starting guard and defensive end. Harris plays running back and linebacker.

In addition to Bell’s two touchdown runs, Harris and Patrick Teich both ran for Center Moriches touchdowns as well. Another Red Devils score came through the air, an 18-yard connection from Jeff Foster to Nuquan Mathis.

Bell wove and sped his way to 111 yards on 10 carries, including runs of five and 28 yards that brought him into the end zone.

“I try my hardest every game, and whatever God gives me, it is what it is,” he said.

A four-year varsity starter, Bell is an undoubted talent.

“Myles is a special athlete,” Failla said. “He can accelerate on a dime, and he’s got nice vision. It seems like he cuts so fluidly, his hips never move.”

McGann-Mercy has a back who can run well, too. Stepnoski scored both of McGann-Mercy’s touchdowns in addition to making a team-leading nine tackles and recovering a fumble.

The Monarchs fell behind by 19-0 in the opening 14:32, but didn’t quit. On the final play of the first half, Keith Schroeher (8 of 18, 120 yards) lofted a pass down the right sideline that Stepnoski ran under, collected and kept running until he reached the end zone, 78 yards away.

Stepnoski also brought the Monarchs their second touchdown in the third quarter when he burst through for a 32-yard scoring run on a fourth-and-three play. Drew Rajotte’s extra point cut Center Moriches’ lead to 26-14.

The bulk of McGann-Mercy’s offense came from Stepnoski’s three receptions, 98 of the team’s 159 yards of total offense. The Monarchs had difficulty moving the ball, generating only two first downs, 39 rushing yards and converting two of 11 third-down plays.

But the Monarchs showed fight (in more ways than one).

“We don’t give up,” Stepnoski said. “We fought all the way until the end, even though it was not the closest score in the world. We didn’t give up, and that was heartening to see.”

Failla said: “They were outgunned, and they kept fighting. Nobody told them that they were outgunned.”

For three hours, Doroski and Failla had to put their friendship aside and focus on the task at hand.

“You’re trying to win a football game, you know,” Doroski said. “We work with these kids all year long. You want what’s best for them, obviously. He’s doing what’s best for his kids, I’m trying to do what’s best for my kids, and we go from there.”

Now that this game is out of the way, Failla said, Doroski and him can “go back to being friends.”


03/31/11 7:39pm
03/31/2011 7:39 PM

BOB LIEPA PHOTO | Meghan Donnelly of Bishop McGann-Mercy won the triple jump with a distance of 28 feet 2 1/2 inches.

The Suffolk County League VII girls track and field meet on Thursday at Bishop McGann-Mercy Diocesan High School offered something of a surprise. Cold rain was one thing, wind was another, but how about some hail on the last day of March?

And then there was something that wasn’t surprising at all: another win for the Monarchs.

That’s just what they do.

The Monarchs didn’t allow nasty weather or the Center Moriches Red Devils to prevent them from continuing their winning ways. With their 92-37 season-opening victory, the Monarchs extended their dual-meet win streak to 20. Their last loss was to the Port Jefferson Royals on April 15, 2008.

“It’s a lot more motivation,” said McGann-Mercy senior Kayleigh Macchirole, who has never experienced a team loss in her three years with the Monarchs. “That’s a reason why I give everything I have at dual meets, because I want to win the dual meets, keep the winning streak alive.”

Winning has become as much a part of McGann-Mercy’s program as the equipment and the athletes, so much so that when one of the team’s throwers, Catherine Andes, was asked if the result was what she expected on Thursday, she replied: “Of course I expected it. Why wouldn’t I?”

BOB LIEPA PHOTO | Bishop McGann-Mercy triple jumper Michelle Borge came in second place at 24 feet 2 1/2 inches.

Defending league champion McGann-Mercy, which went 7-0 last year, was led by Sasa Vann, who won three events. The junior finished first in the long jump (15 feet 7 inches), the 100 meters (13.5 seconds) and the 200 (28.2).

Two seniors, Kayleigh Macchirole and Olivia Schumann, won two events each for the Monarchs. Macchirole led a sweep in the shot put with a throw of 28-4 and breezed in the 400 with a time of 1:02.9. Schumann took first in the high jump at 4-2 and the 400 intermediate hurdles in 1:12.2.

What wasn’t entirely expected, however, was the weather. The meet was contested in difficult conditions to say the least.

“There was hail, there was sleet, there was wind, there was rain, a little bit of everything,” said Tricia Nunez, who is in her second year as McGann-Mercy’s coach.

Macchirole called the weather conditions the worst she has ever experienced while competing in a track meet. “They were horrible,” she said.

In light of the weather, athletes were permitted to compete in warmup suits and, since they had no bearing on the final result, the three scheduled relay races were not run.

Having lost only four athletes from last year’s team, McGann-Mercy remains a squad to be taken seriously. “They’re a great group of kids who are so committed and they’re very, very hard working,” Nunez said. “When you have that combination, there are all sorts of possibilities.”

Andes did well, winning the discus with a throw of 63-0 and taking second in the shot put at 22-10. Other Monarchs came though with winning performances. Meghan Donnelly’s triple jump of 28-2 1/2 landed her in first place. Emily Venesina was the first to cross the finish line in the 1,500 with a time of 5:44.2. Delina Auciello clocked 2:45.2 in the 800. Isabella Franz took second to no one in the 3,000 with her 12:06.1. In consideration of the inclement weather, the 1,500 race walk was shortened to 800 meters; Lindsay Gelling of McGann-Mercy was the first finisher in 4:34.5, beating out teammate Colleen Edwards by 2.8 seconds.

It was a convincing showing across the board.

“I knew they were going to be good, but I didn’t think they were going to be as good as they were,” Center Moriches Coach Dan Fournier said. “What makes a good team is working together and being consistent. They had some good athletes out there today.”

Last year McGann-Mercy capped its dual-meet season with a four-point win over rival Port Jefferson. The schedule-maker apparently has a sense for drama. Once again those two teams will face each other in the final dual meet of the year in Port Jefferson on May 11.

Hail is not in the forecast.


03/24/11 6:55pm
03/24/2011 6:55 PM

BOB LIEPA PHOTO | Carolyn Carrera won 23 of 24 draws in addition to recording six goals and two assists in Riverhead's first varsity game, a 17-8 win over Center Moriches.

CENTER MORICHES — The big day finally arrived, or at least that is what the members of the new Riverhead High School girls lacrosse team must have thought.

With the start of their inaugural varsity season already pushed back a couple of days, there was some uncertainty as to whether they would play their first game on Thursday. Some morning snowfall put a question mark over the status of the non-league season-opener that afternoon against the Center Moriches Red Devils.

Riverhead had already seen its scheduled season opener two days earlier against the Mattituck/Greenport/Southold Tuckers changed at the last minute to a scrimmage.

If nothing else, Thursday morning’s weather might have calmed the nerves of Riverhead’s coach, Rich D’Alsace.

“The sun came out, the weather warmed up and we were excited,” he said. “It was a little cold, but my girls have always played better when the weather’s against them. They seem to step up to that challenge.”

They stepped up to this one. The Blue Waves made their varsity debut a memorable one. By the time they had played their first 6 minutes 26 seconds of varsity lacrosse, they were already on the positive side of an 8-0 score. They held a commanding 13-5 lead at halftime and won, 17-8, in the season opener for both teams.

Not bad for starters. Not bad at all.

“I come out here to win, to be competitive and we did it,” Riverhead center middie Carolyn Carrera said. “It’s awesome.”

BOB LIEPA PHOTO | Riverhead's Emily Oruc tried to charge past Samantha Fitzgerald of Center Moriches.

Awesome was a word Carrera used seven times in a two-and-a-half-minute interview.

D’Alsace liked what he saw as well. “It was very encouraging,” he said.

No greater encouragement could be found than in the play of Carrera, a freshman with undoubted ability. Carrera pumped in six goals from 10 shots, assisted on two other goals and, perhaps most impressive of all, won 23 of 24 draws. Now that’s a full day’s work.

“We know that she’s an experienced player and she’s had a lot of time on the field with a lot of different travel teams and elite teams, so it’s not a surprise to see her do well, but what’s good is that she is doing well and excelling in areas where she needed to make improvements, so she’s really becoming a well-rounded player,” D’Alsace said. “She continues to surprise me. She steps up. She has an extra gear that she finds, and I still don’t know how far she’ll reach, but it will be far.”

Carrera and junior Kristin Peragine had two goals and two assists each during that game-opening 8-0 run. Peragine ended up with four goals and one assist. Another Riverheader, Bethany Peters, put up three goals and two assists while Danielle McCabe added a pair of goals. Sandra Ruttkayova and Amber Kemperman also found the net for the winners.

Riverhead’s junior goalie, Alycia Kratoville, was credited with five saves.

Center Moriches captain Samantha Fitzgerald was the only multiple-goal scorer for the Red Devils. The junior middie/attackman struck for four goals and one assist. Emily Fey, Brianna Mascia, Samantha Alcus and Jackie Maida had the rest of the goals. Samantha Nankervis registered two assists.

After falling behind by 8-0, Center Moriches twice pulled to within six goals of Riverhead, but no closer than that.

While Riverhead, a Suffolk County Division I side, made its varsity debut, Division II Center Moriches opened its second varsity season. The Red Devils went 2-14 last year.

D’Alsace appreciated the way his team corrected some weaknesses that were exposed in the scrimmage against Mattituck/Greenport/Southold. He especially liked the way the Blue Waves spread the field, created space, communicated and moved the ball. At the same time, however, he knows it would be unwise to make too much out of one game.

“I’m excited we have a win and I’m definitely happy, but I don’t want to have any false sense of where we are,” he said. “This is the first game. … While I’m happy, we definitely have some improvements to make and we’re definitely going to face some tough teams.”

In the meantime, Carrera was looking forward to a happy bus ride home.

“We’re going to do good this season,” she said. “I can definitely see it. We have potential. A great start to the season.”