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Partly Cloudy,53°
Sunday, April 20, 2014
Oceanside baseball fields saved
empstead Town Supervisor Kate Murray and Senior Councilman Anthony Santino join head coach James Hickey (back 5th left) and members of the East Rockaway High School baseball team who are using Oceanside Park as a practice site after Hurricane Sandy destroyed school fields. Supervisor Murray and Councilman Santino made Oceanside Park available to the “Rocks” during the month of March so the team could hold daily practices in advance of the 2013 season. Varsity players joining Supervisor Murray, Councilman Santino and Coach Hickey include, Damian Amiruddin, Matt Briedenbach, Eddie Carneglia, Mike Delgais, Dylan Delury, Anthony Filoteo, Frankie Gallegro, Ben Giliberti, Vinny Guida, Billy Humes, Patrick Kelly, David McClure, Chris Mulato, Cameron Ralph, Keith Risorto and Tom Scagnelli.

The baseball season at East Rockaway High School has been saved by the team of Supervisor Kate Murray and Senior Councilman Anthony Santino who will open two fields at Oceanside Park a month ahead of schedule to allow the “Rocks” to have enough pre-season practice to compete in the upcoming league schedule. “Our township has rallied to the cause of East Rockaway’s varsity and junior varsity baseball teams who were in danger of being shut out from the 2013 season after losing their school fields to the wrath of Hurricane Sandy,” stated Supervisor Kate Murray.

“Among the areas hardest hit by Hurricane Sandy were the neighboring communities of East Rockaway and Oceanside,” added Councilman Santino. “The buildings and grounds at East Rockaway High School were devastated by the storm, and the ballfields were flooded beyond repair. So, the town has stepped to the plate by pinch-hitting for the school fields with the baseball fields at nearby Oceanside Park.”

“Traditionally, town ballfields open the first week of April, but we’ve gone to bat for the East Rockaway teams so they can schedule enough preseason practice to participate in the regular season schedule,” commented Supervisor Murray.

East Rockaway High School will use two fields at Oceanside Park from March 4th through April 5th. Both the varsity and junior varsity teams will practice on weekdays after school from 4 to 7 p.m. The teams will also have three Saturday morning practice sessions in March.

The use of Oceanside Park is a home run for our school and our kids,” added East Rockaway Athletic Director Dom Vulpis. “The season was really in jeopardy before the town ‘pitched’ in. Now we’re back in the game, and the players can’t wait to take the field.”

“As the rebuilding continues in many town communities, the revitalization of spirit becomes as important as the revitalization of property,” concluded Supervisor Kate Murray. “We want to team-up with residents, businesses and schools whenever we can to provide some measure of relief and some means of happiness.”

“We need to return a sense of normalcy to these storm ravaged communities,” stated Senior Councilman Santino. “Obviously the process is slow and the steps are gradual, but to enable these East Rockaway athletes to take the field when the umpire cries “Play Ball” is a big win for the home team.”

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