OBHS Athletic Hall of Fame Inducts New Class
Just before the crowd swells for the Homecoming Parade and Baymen pride showers the streets in purple in gold, an historic yet intimate celebration takes place every other year in the gymnasium of Oyster Bay High School. There, just beyond a 360-degree shrine of athletic greatness dating back to the early1900s, the Oyster Bay High School Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony takes place.
If you haven’t gone to one of these ceremonies, you should consider attending as it is truly one of the most iconic celebrations of Baymen excellence. Steeped in tradition, the ceremony encapsulates the milestones and history that embody the district, while honoring alumni, coaches and honorary inductees that have made a significant impact on the high school’s athletic program.
Mr. Elliot “Butch” Garrison, Chairperson of the Athletic Hall of Fame Committee, summed up the program this way: “We’re about history, tradition and future,” he said. In fact, those words prominently adorn a large, wooden trophy case, a central feature in the Hall of Fame located in the upper gym lobby.
Consisting of 12 coaches and retired coaches, the Hall of Fame Committee was established and charged with the arduous process of selecting deserving candidates by researching their accomplishments and ensuring that they meet or exceed certain criteria.
Noting the fine job the committee did in selecting this year’s class, Athletic Director and host of the induction ceremony Mr. Kevin Trentowski also expressed thanks to the “many people who have contributed so much time and effort into making the Hall of Fame and the gymnasium area such a beacon of school and community pride.”
“Anyone who walks through this area cannot help but be touched and inspired by the rich tradition that is abundantly around them,” he said. “Our Hall of Fame is truly a link to the past and a bridge to the future.”
This year marked the eighth biennial Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony, and, in keeping with tradition, was hallmarked by words of thanks and praise by administrators, the Board of Education and local dignitaries. Each inductee stood center court as Mr. Trentowski shared his or her exceptional accomplishments with the audience. Mr. Garrison and Superintendent of Schools Dr. Laura Seinfeld congratulated each athlete and coach, and handed each one a plaque identical to the one permanently mounted in the Hall of Fame. They also congratulated each honorary inductee and presented them with a trophy.
“Today’s induction ceremony continues the long-standing tradition of honoring those individuals committed to school athletics and who have worked hard, excelled and brought honor and prestige to themselves, their families, their school and the entire community,” Dr. Seinfeld said.
Mr. Garrision, an Oyster Bay High School alumnus and former football coach, offered some history, setting the foundation on which the athletic program was built. He noted the purple and gold colors, chosen in 1900; the forming of the Oyster Bay Athletic Association in 1911, and the recovery of the coveted Cornell All-Sports Award presented to Oyster Bay High School in the 1947-48 school year. The award was misplaced, however through research by the Hall of Fame Committee with the support of the Oyster Bay Athletic Booster Club, the trophy was replicated in 2009, based on archives from the Athletic Department and is encased for preservation near the Hall of Fame for all to honor and enjoy.
Newly inducted Hall of Famer Mr. Thomas Hadel spoke on behalf of the inductees, offering words of gratitude to the committee, the athletic department, the district, and to all involved in the success of the athletics program in Oyster Bay.
The new Hall of Fame members and their families were led into the lobby for the unveiling of the plaques, and as they stood gazing at the wall, it seemed as if they were reliving a memory that brought them to this moment today. The celebration continued with photos and a reception lunch provided by the Oyster Bay Athletic Booster Club. Congratulations to the Athletic Hall of Fame Class of 2019:
- Andrew Ilardi, Class of 1952, Baseball four-year varsity player and three-time Captain, two-time All Scholastic/All Conference; Basketball four-year varsity player. Served in the United States Navy.
- Vincent Giamboco, Class of 2005, Cross Country All County, All Class and All Division; Winter Track Record Holder, three-time All County, All Class and All Division; and Track & Field two-time All State, County Champion, four-time All County, Record Holder and All Conference. Earned a master’s degree from C. W. Post.
- Thomas Hadel, Class of 1984, Football All Nassau County “Gridiron 44” Captain and Oyster Bay Defensive MVP, 1983; Received the Donald Lowe Scholarship Award and the inaugural Michael Bruschini Scholarship. United States Militaary Academy at West Point Graduate. First inductee to have graduated from a military academy.
- Ryan Pullman, Class of 2008, Wrestling three-time Nassau County Champion and three-time MVP; 86 career wins over his varsity career; five-year varsity member; MIP award winner. Attended the State University of New York (SUNY) at Brockport.
- Ryan Arnel, Class of 2012, Wrestling 2012 Nassau County Champion, three-time All Nassau County Wrestler including Nassau County Most Outstanding Wrestler Award; Team Captain and Team MVP. Attended New York University.
- Kyle Cartwright, Class of 2013, Soccer, Winter Track and Track & Field; State Champion 400 M Hurdler and All New York State; Holds 400 M Hurdle, 110 Hurdle, 55M Hurdle and 4X400, 4X200 relay records; County Champion and two-time All County, Winner of MVPs, MIPs, and numerous awards for academics and character. Attended Villanova University.
- Dylan Rankin, Class of 2012, Wrestling County Champion and two-time All County, two-time MVP and two-time Captain. Football two-time Captain, Unsung Hero award winner and three-time varsity player. Attended Springfield College.
- Dillon Robinson, Class of 2013, Baseball three-time All Nassau County, League Most Valuable Player, Team MVP, Team Captain; Basketball Team Captain. Attended SUNY Cortland.
- Bruce Levorchick, Social Studies Teacher and Girls’ Basketball Coach, Overall Record 118-62; Nassau County Champions 95-96, 96-97, 97-98, 98-99, 2000-01; Long Island Champions 95-96, 96-97, 97-98, 98-99, 2000-01; New York State Final Four 98-99 and 2000-01; Newsday Coach of the Year 2000-01. Retired 2017.
- Jay Davis, Physical Education Teacher and Wrestling and Baseball Coach; Baseball Coach from 1987-2017; 440 Career Wins; 10-time League Champions, eight-time county Champions, two-time Long Island Champions; South East Regional Champions. Coached 50 All County players, 10 League MVPs; 10-time League/Conference Coach of the Year, eight-time Nassau County Coach of the Year. Started Wrestling Program in 2000 and coached through 2015; Coached 27 Nassau County Champions, 58 All County Wrestlers, 64 All Conference Wrestlers, one All State Wrestler, eight Team Champions, eight-time Coach of the Year. Coached boys and girls bowling for two years. Retired from teaching and coaching in 2017.
- Thomas Neary, Physical Education Teacher and Winter Track and Track & Field Coach; Coached both girls and boys varsity teams; Boys’ Winter Track Coach of the Year; Girls’ Spring Track Conference Champions and two-time Division Champions. Retired from teaching and coaching in 2016.
- Joan James, Class of 1952, Worked in the Athletic Department; Helped create the Team Club, which participated in trips to athletic, music, and other community events; Annually created and distributed Thanksgiving baskets to those in need; Participated and led numerous community fundraisers.
- Frank Imperiale, Assistant Principal 1990-2015, actively involved with all extracurricular activities within the OBHS Athletic Department; attended thousands of sporting events during his 25 years of service. Assisted with Track & Field athletes. Played leadership roles in plays, concerts and other events at Oyster Bay High School; A man of high character and commitment to the district. Retired in 2015.
- Oyster Bay High School Booster Club, Established during the 1969-70 school year to support and promote the athletic programs offered by the district. Consists of parents and community members; has provided numerous scholarships, giving thousands of dollars to deserving graduates; Supports the Hall of Fame, Physical Education, District-Wide Athletic Venues and other enhancement to the district’s athletic programs.