Athletics Highlights #12

The Winter season on the Hilltop proved to be an incredibly rewarding experience for our students. We witnessed teams growing together, winning championships, and getting back to competing in the sports they love after a two year absence. 

Overall, each team improved tremendously as the season went on, with numerous crowned champions and records broken. In all, we celebrated three undefeated league champions as a team, 25 All League recipients, five League Champions, three State Champions, and five school records broken. This time together with teammates proved to be the most satisfying experience of the athletics winter season. 

Varsity Boys’ Basketball
The Varsity Boys’ Basketball team came together in an impressive manner to finish the season with eight wins, beating the #1 seed in the NYSAIS Tournament and making it all the way to the Semifinals. The team finished 5-3 in the last eight NYSAIS games. The team was led by a selfless senior class of Charlie Lee ’22, Christian Wiele '22, Stefan Darmanovic ’22, Jason Berger ’22, and Danny Nuzum ’22. The boys cared and supported each other on the court but organized team meetings on their own, enhancing their bonds away from the court. Jack Perlman ’25 and Jake Hendelman ’24 were the leading scorers down the stretch run. Eleven players from this year's roster will return next season.

Varsity Girls’ Basketball
The Varsity Girls’ Basketball team ended their season with a record of 16-6, placing second in the Ivy League with a record of 9-3, and received the #4 seed in the NYSAIS tournament. The girls exceeded every expectation after not seeing the court for almost two years. They worked together, improved weekly, and most importantly had fun as a team. They reeled off two impressive tournament wins at home before losing to Dalton, the eventual state champs, in the semifinals. Alessa Mendoza ’24 was selected First Team All-Ivy League and Sophia Petriello ’23 was selected Second Team All-Ivy League. We will miss our Seniors Ashley Morgner ’22, Phoebe Naughton ’22, and Destiny Stephen ’22.

Varsity Fencing
The Varsity Fencing program had an exceptional year. Returning from COVID, our expectations were exceeded in all weapons and gender. The Girls’ Foil team placed fifth in the league overall with a 5-7 record and fourth at the League Team Championships. Jessye Salmon ’22 led the team with a 27-6 personal record. The Boys’ Foil team had their third consecutive undefeated season, taking home the top prize of League Champions at the League Team Championships. Freshman Joshua Lee ’25, sophomore Noah Nager ’24, and seniors Maxwel Lee ’22 and Max Calman ’22 led the team to this incredible accomplishment. The Girls’ Epee and Saber teams finished seventh overall, respectively led by captains Afsana Dhali ’23 and Sofia Malhas ’24. The Boys’ Saber team went undefeated in the league for a second consecutive year, and the third consecutive year winning the League Team Championships. The team was led by Nicky Wind ’22, Arjan Sandhu ’23, and Sam Sugiura ’26 who all went undefeated this season in competition. Sid Shah ’22, Sam Sanders ’24, Inkosi Brou ’26, and Aiden Wasserman ’24 lost only five bouts between them. Boys’ Epee placed second in the League, and first at ​the Team Championships, behind Aiden McComiskey ’23 with a record of 23-5, and Henry Beyrich ’22 who went 23-6 on the season.  

Varsity Boys’ Indoor Track and Field
It was a strong year for the Boys’ Indoor Track and Field team. Led by a powerful group of seniors, the team steadily improved throughout the season, while still saving some of their best performances for the championship meets. The team was well rounded and in the biggest meets of the year, Hackley boys scored in each of the major categories of the sport: sprints, jumps, throws, and distance running. For their work, the boys earned fourth place finishes at both the Ivy and the NYSAIS Championship meets. Congrats to the team’s All-Ivy League performers, Harrison Hayward ’22 (300m), Brendan DiStefano ’22 (1600m) and Dylan Ormsby ’22 (Triple Jump).

Varsity Girls’ Indoor Track and Field
The Girls’ Indoor Track and Field team had a stellar season. The contingent of distance runners saw major improvements in their times over the course of the season, at times dropping tens of seconds from their personal bests. Though the crew of sprinters and throwers was small and featured a couple of athletes new to the team, they performed at the top of their events in meet after meet. By the time the team reached the Ivy Championship meet after early-season competitions at The Armory, and the Ocean Breeze facilities, the Hackley girls ran, jumped, and threw their way to a fourth-place finish. Congratulations to All-Ivy performers Eve Spencer ’22 (1500m, 3000m), Skyler Safriet ’22 (600m) and Ava Lattimore ’23 (High Jump).

Varsity Boys Squash
The Boys’ Squash team had a strong showing this season. The biggest compliment about the team was that there were always more boys willing to play than spaces on the team. On the events side, the boys finished at the top of the Ivy League going undefeated, with an overall record of 11-2, which included wins at home and away against Poly Prep. In the NYSAIS Tournament, they comfortably beat Horace Mann in the semifinals but finished second to a strong RCDS team. At Nationals in Philadelphia, the boys had four very competitive matches and lost in the semifinals, before finishing fourth in Division Three. The team was led by Ben Korengold ’23 and the seniors Greg Reich ’22, Hadi Sumaida ’22, and Niky Dhakad ’22. Freshmen Arjun Virk ’25, Rafa Castro ’25, and Matthew Gluckman ’25 added real energy and commitment. The MVP for the season was Shiraz Awan ’24, who not only was the best organized and most committed player, but he also came through with big wins over the course of the season.

Varsity Girls Squash
The Varsity Girls’ Squash season welcomed some ‘normalcy’ back to the squash courts. The team enjoyed regular practices, inter-scholastic matches, and the return to competition at the NYSAIS Championships and the High School Nationals. Although many of the Ivy League Schools were without programs the girls played tremendous squash going undefeated in the Ivy League and finished with an overall record of 7-3. The team welcomed two new players, Skylar van Eck ’26 and Sejal Virk ’25, who added depth and value to the team. The girls made the NYSAIS Championships beating Chapin in the first round of NYSAIS 6-1. The girls put up a good fight against a strong and experienced Spence team in the semifinal. Spence went on to win the event beating Brearly in the final 6-1. The girls on the team could not have worked harder and been more committed after a two year absence. A special thanks to our departing seniors Dechen Sherpa ‘22, Marren McCrossan ‘22, Maya Miller ‘22, Calista Santomero ’22, and Catherine Lapey ’22. 

Varsity Boys’ Swimming
The Varsity Boys’ Swim team, a hardworking but undermanned squad, finished the season 1-5. At the Ivy Championships, the squad finished fourth, led by Max Hardart ’22 who won the 500 freestyle and 100 Breaststroke. At the NYSAIS Championships Hackley's six qualifiers took fifth out of eleven teams with a strong showing in the relay competitions. Special congratulations to captain Max Hardart ’22 who set the Ivy League record in the 200 Freestyle and 200 Individual Medley and the school record in the 500 Freestyle.

Varsity Girls’ Swimming
The Varsity Girls’ Swim team, with the leadership of the five seniors Annabella Grey ’22, Brooke Lopez-Ryan ’22, Grace Park ’22, Katerina Popova ’22, and Kaitlyn Qu ’22, finished the season with a 4-2 record in the dual meet season. Grace Park ’22 led all Hornets in scoring at the Ivy Championships where the girls took third. At the NYSAIS Championships Hackley took fifth out of ten teams, riding the wave of distance specialist Junior Annabel Hardart ’23 who was the top Hackley scorer.

Varsity Wrestling
The Varsity Wrestling Team had a successful season. The team went 5-10 and a fourth-place finish in the Ivy League and at the NYSAIS Championships. Hackley had two Ivy Champions, John Churchill ’23 (189) and Liam Abraham ’23 (215). Captains Cole Joseph ’23 (138) and Connor Kelly ’24 (152) were selected to the All-Ivy Team. Cole Joseph and Liam Abraham were NYSAIS Champions. Both Cole and Liam qualified to wrestle at the NY State Federations in Albany in February. Cole Joseph led the team in wins (28), pins (21), takedowns (48), and escapes (16). Cliff Chapman ’24 led the team in reversals with twelve and Liam Abraham had the most team points with 86. John Churchill recorded the fastest pin of the season in 0:14 seconds. Thank you to seniors Alex Bileca ’22 and Captain Theo Yannuzzi ’22 for their hard work, dedication, and commitment to the wrestling program.