A lot was on the plate for this celebration of Riverhead softball.
When Riverhead’s two high school softball teams faced each other Saturday night, not only was it a double senior night, but it was also an intriguing matchup of opposing coaches. Bishop McGann-Mercy’s Rose Horton and Riverhead’s Jackie Zilnicki have been friends since they were Little League teammates. Both went on to play for the respective teams they’re currently coaching. Last year Horton was Zilnicki’s assistant coach at Mercy.
Two friends and former softball players who coached together last season are both now coaching at their respective alma maters, in the same town, less than a mile away from each other.
After one year of coaching at Bishop McGann-Mercy Diocesan High School, Jackie Zilnicki has slid over to take over the team at Riverhead High School, where she pitched, played shortstop and centerfield. Meanwhile, Zilnicki’s former assistant coach at Mercy, Rose Horton, takes over the Monarchs, the team she used to pitch for. Both coaches graduated from those schools in 2008.
Her formal first name is Isabella, although just about everyone calls her Izzy, which Izzy Sorgi prefers.
The Bishop McGann-Mercy Diocesan High School softball pitcher can be called something else: fearless.
The previous meeting between the Bishop McGann-Mercy and Center Moriches high school softball teams was what ESPN would have labeled an instant classic. And Thursday’s rematch? Not so much.
In that memorable game on April 15, Mercy gave Center Moriches a scare before falling short, 7-6, in eight innings. Thursday’s game didn’t last a full five innings. READ
When the curtain on the drama that unfolded on the Center Moriches High School softball field finally fell, Red Devils coach Rich Roberts heaved a sigh of relief. His counterpart, Bishop McGann-Mercy’s Jackie Zilnicki, agonized over what might have been.
McGann-Mercy was one out away from pulling off an upset and winning the Suffolk County League VII game, which was full of chills and thrills. But Center Moriches is undefeated for a reason. The Red Devils can hit the ball and they have a knack for coming through under pressure.
John King makes the move from coaching Shoreham-Wading River’s junior varsity softball team to its varsity team, and yet he is still coaching quite a young team. A young team that can hit and has the ability to do some good things. READ
WESTERN CONNECTICUT ATHLETICS PHOTO | Jackie Zilnicki of Riverhead was named to the 2013 Little East All-Conference Team.
COLLEGE WOMEN’S BASKETBALL: Zilnicki on defensive team Jackie Zilnicki of Riverhead is one of four Western Connecticut State University players who have been named to the 2013 Little East All-Conference Team. Zilnicki joined teammate Sha’Quira Palmer on the All-Defensive Team. Zilnicki, a 5-foot-8 senior guard, averaged 11.3 points and a team-high (along with Carly Murphy) 5.6 rebounds while leading the team with 41 steals.
Western Connecticut finished with an overall record of 19-8, one victory shy of the program’s fifth 20-win season in the past six years.
SUNY ONEONTA ATHLETICS PHOTO | Daniel Stern tallied eight points in a win over Southwestern University.
COLLEGE MEN’S LACROSSE: Stern gets 4 goals, 4 assists Daniel Stern, a junior from Shoreham, led the charge and finished the day with four goals and four assists for SUNY/Oneonta (1-1) in a 12-3 defeat of Southwestern University on Feb. 23. Oneonta outshot Southwestern, 42-26, and picked up 32 more ground balls (56-24). In Oneonta’s opening game of the season, a 17-6 loss to Whittier College, Oneonta started out strong, going up 2-0 on goals by James Reiser and Anthony Laureano, both off Stern assists, before Whittier tied it up by the end of the first period. The second period started much like the first as Stern put the Red Dragons on the board again. Whittier then went on an 8-0 burst to take the lead and never looked back.