Junior Korey Morton set a new school and meet record for the 55 meter dash, competing on January 31st for the FCIAC Indoor Track and Field Championship.
To Morton, beating the school record was the biggest accomplishment he has had in his short career which only began his sophomore year. “I'm surprised someone like me was able to beat the record,” said Morton who trained for this achievement by working during the off-season with Coach Rudy and Coach Bradley.
At the start of the season, Morton’s goal was to make all FCIAC, an accomplishment he achieved quite easily. “All FCIAC is always a goal and something I am happy that I accomplished and there will be more to come.”
Morton started off playing basketball, that was his biggest interest, but after Coach Dustin stepped down as the varsity basketball coach coming into Morton’s sophomore year, he lost interest in the sport and wanted to try something new. This became track.
Despite his success in track, Morton is planning on playing baseball in college, currently looking at schools such as: Bryant and Seton Hall to play at. “Running track is another way for training for baseball, it’s going to help me improve my speed.”
Doing all this work in track, Morton feels that he will be ready for the baseball season to start as they play Norwalk High away on March 30th for their season opener.
Brendan Duddy, captain for the Brien McMahon golf team, feels that this years golf team has potential and will have a chance to have the best record in years.
Duddy started playing golf in the 8th grade but only fell in love with it his junior year. He likes the fact that you can begin to play golf at such a young age and can continue to play into your old age.
Duddy is excited to see what this team will bring. He says he also loves playing for the golf team because of his coach, Robert Kane. “He [Kane] gives us a lot of freedom to develop and he’s super motivational giving us instructions even during our matches.”
Last year the golf team hardly had enough committed players to form a varsity team. Duddy spent this past offseason working on his game as well as recruiting athletes throughout McMahon in order to have a strong team. He says that while he has been focusing on this season and recruiting seniors, he also has been planning for the future of McMahon golf by targeting sophomore and freshman to join the team. Duddy’s efforts have shown, now having more than enough members for even a JV squad.
Coach Kane believes that Duddy has great leadership skills, is very positive and is very encouraging. He says he really shows that he loves this sport. “As a golfer he has much potential as anyone. He seems to have caught the ‘golf bug’ and will probably play for the rest of his life.”
Kane saw the improvement Duddy had made from the first time he’d seen him play in last March. By the end of the season Duddy was a solid 4th player. However, the golf team struggled with not having many players and weren’t able to be a competitive team.
“We were a lot younger last year, but with Peter and Paul Buellesbach, Sexias Aldridge and Brendan Duddy, we have a more experienced team coming back. We just need one or two players to make us competitive” Kane said in terms of what he expects for this season.
“I know that most likely we won’t be able to beat a lot of these teams we play but ik we’re going to be competitive. All we need to do is play our game and try and get into the other team’s head” Duddy added.
The golf team tees off for their first match Thursday, April 4th against St. Joseph at 3 pm. This match could set the tone for the rest of the season, hopefully positively.
As captain of the throwing team for Track and Field at Brien McMahon, senior Vassili Kyrkos has decided to play golf for the spring season.
Leaving track was a major decision for Kyrkos, but once he took into account his future, he knew what his mind was set on. “Going to a college in Canada, I feel like my major is more important than any type of sports career and I don't feel like pursuing track and field will really help me financially in the future,” said Kyrkos.
Kyrkos, wanting to major in civil engineering once he gets to college, understands that sports and school will not mix well. “The courses are very rigorous and I feel like playing a sport will really affect my studying and doing well in school which will prevent me from accomplishing big things in college.”
Kyrkos was Brendan Duddy’s (‘19) captain in the track season, but now the roles have reversed as Duddy serves as Kyrkos’ golf captain. “I mean obviously it’s a huge blow for the track team, but they have Kelete with them and Vassili helped him all winter to improve so I don’t think they’re really losing any points.”
Most student athletes that play different sports want different experiences, but when it comes to track and golf that is not the case being that they are both individual sports. “Track was a very individualized sport for me until the championship season, so I feel if I can focus on myself I can do really good in golf,” said Kyrkos.
Starting golf just in this past October, Kyrkos has already fallen in love with the sport. He feels that it is game of patience and something he could improve on for the future.
“He’s always sending me videos of him practicing at home and always asking me the next time we’re gonna play,” Duddy said. He went on to add “He’s improved so much since the first time I brought him out. I think he’s even surpassed some of the kids on the team last year… we definitely have a chance at a winning record if we all improve like he has.”
As a senior, Kyrkos wants to live up his final year to the fullest and choosing golf will help him to do just that. Kyrkos believes that golf is something he is able to do in future, with his friends or even individually.
While competing at a regular competition at Hill House in New Haven a senior and well known athlete Justin Forde landed wrong while triple jumping spraining his ankle and causing a devastating loss to the Track and Field team of Brien McMahon.
“I don’t want to go out and compete and hurt my ankle more severely, knowing that Nationals is right around the corner” said Forde.
With a positive mindset Forde is determined to come out stronger and better making sure he is doing everything he can. “I have do a lot more to prevent anything else like taking it easy, stretching and icing” Forde added.
Senior Captain for Norwalk High Ashley Wilson said: “I think what makes us successful is that we always work together, but we did more than we usually do so that way we can have bragging rights against our friends from McMahon.”
Coming from halftime much didn’t change except the gap between scores, McMahon played even worse in the second half and finished the game 79-29 taking a sad loss.
From McMahon, Senior Michelle Menard leads the team scoring 8 points throughout the entire game, also doing a good job cleaning up the boards.
“The game didn’t go as planned, but it was my last time playing The High and I think I played my best game trying to fight against stacked up odds,” said Michelle Menard.
From Norwalk High, both Senior Captains Ashley Wilson, and Naeva Rene lead their team scoring 16 and 18 total points throughout the game.
Norwalk High and McMahon both have tough games coming up between Trumbull who has only lost once and St. Joe’s who is 7-10 hopefully they play their best, and finish their last few games strong.
The game started off with Norwalk High scoring two two-pointers within the first two minutes, leaving McMahon at the edge of their seats, wondering why the worst team in the Eastern Division of the FCIAC was beating them 4-0.
“I had a hard time scoring the ball so I had to find others ways to help my team and offense putbacks was my game that night” said Williams.
It was at the turn of the second half of the game when the senators started to communicate and play as a team. Points were coming in left and right and they started to gain a lead with Norwalk High falling behind.
With three-pointers coming from both teams, the lead started to disappear. Key players like Justin Lebron made a lasting impact towards the team's success in the final minutes, and seconds, of the game.
Williams added; “I think Jajuan Wiggins and Latrel Stewart were our key players. Jajuan did a great job at attacking and controlling the flow of the game. He played a solid all-around game. Latrel Stewart was in foul trouble early but he didn’t let that affect him despite missing the whole second quarter. He came in and did a fantastic job on the boards and creating for his team.”
With the end of the game closing in and McMahon in the lead by seven points, it was all looking good until there was an injury on the court that stopped the game for about a five-minute break in the middle of the quarter. McMahon got the ball once it started back up again and luckily, they were able to score another two-pointer, giving them a hard-earned win against their biggest rival: Norwalk High.
“Yes we still won but the game was way closer than it should have been and we let them hang around with us for too long.” (Fitzpatrick ‘20)
Eduardo Vargas (‘19), mostly known by his fellow classmates as ‘Eddy’, has recently committed to Iona College where he will be playing soccer for the next four years. Vargas has been playing since the age of 6, his hard work and dedication paid off and he will be joining the Gael family this upcoming fall.
After playing the sport for many years, Vargas reveals that he hasn’t always been a fan of soccer. “My parents forced me to play soccer, even though I wanted to play football because I was a big and chubby baby. Sometimes I would even cry because I didn’t want to play soccer, but when I noticed I was sort of good, I enjoyed playing and everything went uphill from there.”
Vargas would often travel to different states for soccer showcases where he would show off his wonderful skills in hopes of getting contacted by coaches from many different colleges. This is when he first heard from Iona.
“I first heard about Iona when the coaches reached out to my parents after seeing me at a showcase in Texas, asking about me and if I wanted to train with them over the summer.”
While still getting offers from different schools, he always had Iona on his mind.
“It was not my first choice, but definitely in my top three. Northeastern University was my first choice and Elon University was my second, but they didn’t offer enough money and they didn’t have much interest after I got injured and was out for a while my junior season.”
Vargas got to know more about Iona and built a relationship with the coach, helping his decision of choosing a school a little easier.
“I knew Iona was the right choice when the coach offered me a lot and guaranteed me a good career and playing time as long as I work hard. The people there were great and I am looking forward to be attending.”
Melanie Vargas (19’), a long-time friend of Eddy said, “Eddy is a great player and I think he deserves everything he is accomplishing. I am truly happy for him.”
Vargas’ future plans for his soccer career is to get better everyday at the sport he loves playing the most and to do well in college. He hopes to get chosen for the Major League Soccer (MLS) draft or go pro overseas.
Justin Forde: Senior track star Justin Forde, went to a track meet in Virginia at Liberty University to show what he is capable of. In the Men's High Jump event Forde is ranked top four at 6’10, and in the Men's Long Jump he is number six in the nation. However, what makes Forde stand out is being ranked number one in the nation in the Men's Triple Jump.
Ajia Andrews: Senior Girls Basketball player, Ajia Andrews, worked to help her team to a possible victory against Staples on Friday, January 25th, 2019. Andrews had nine points all from the three point line, along with six rebounds, two assist, three steals, one block, and no turnovers.
Eric Miller: Junior Boys Basketball player, Eric Miller, had a total of twenty-one points in the loss to Staples on Friday, January 25th, 2019. Miller hit a total of five three’s. All of Millers points occurred in the first and third quarter, and ended the game with only one foul.
Peyton McNamara: Junior Track Captain, Peyton McNamara, showcased her skills at the Western Division Championships. McNamara won the 50-meter dash, and participated on the winning 4x200 relay team.
Forde has been voted by the students of Brien McMahon High School as, The Athlete of the Week. Senior Track captain, who is committed to the University of Miami, is a top threat for many other track stars around the country. Forde is number one in the nation for Men’s Triple Jump. He says, “I’m very comfortable,” after being asked how it feels to be number one in the nation. Forde’s freshman year opened up with him being a three sport athlete but for his senior year he had decided to focus on just track and it seems to have been paying off. Not only is he number one but he is also number six for the Men’s Long Jump. The Brien McMahon Track program has been noticed more because of Forde, however, when asked about the chances of BMHS winning a state championship he states, “It isn’t an individual that can win States because of the lack of seniors, so it's going to be hard but not impossible.” Forde is a very important athlete figure to the Brien McMahon community.