Category Archives: Schenectady County Sports Trivia

Join Mikey and discuss his hometown sports moments from Schenectady, NY. Linton High School, Union college and more.

75 Pound, 11 ounce Carp

I remember fishing for carp in the Mohawk River as a young person.  We used cornmeal, worms, or whatever bait would attract them to our line.  We often set up on the banks somewhere between Freeman’s Bridge and the Rexford Bridge.  We caught some beauties that fought for long periods of time, but nothing like the world record 75 pound, 11 ounce lunker that was landed by an angler at Lac de St. Cassier, France.

Guns Along the Mohawk

It was the 1950s, and Schenectady’s Fred Pedinotti, a meticulous carpenter, whose workmanship was second to none, and Armando Berti, the father of former Bishop Gibbons and Houston Astros farm team catcher, Don Berti,  were rustling through the Fall brush along the Mohawk River on Aqueduct Road, looking to slay a rabbit.  They toted either a 14 or 16-gage shotgun.

Nice Guy Leo Sykes

Nice guy, athlete and sports fan Leo Sykes passed away recently.  I remember Leo attending our basketball games at Linton High School in the early 1960s. (he lived just a couple of blocks down the street).  He was one of our most avid fans and was instrumental in getting my teammate, Phil Tama, a basketball scholarship to his alma mater, Fordham University.  John Bach was Fordham’s head coach at the time.  Leo attended Mont Pleasant High School, then went on, and I believe played football and basketball at Fordham.  One of his college classmates was Vince Scully.

Mike Lupica

Mike Lupica spoke in mid-November at Schenectady County Community College to benefit the Foundation for Mohawk Valley Libraries.  Lupica grew up in Nashua, New Hampshire and attended Boston College.  He presently writes a column for Travel and Leisure Golf, and he has also written for Golf Digest, Parade and Men’s Journal.  Lupica might be best known for writing sports columns for the Daily News.  The column that I am most familiar with is titled “Shooting from the Lip,” which appears in the Daily News on Sundays.    Over the years, Lupica’s favorite targets have been the New York Yankees (mainly because of their exhorbitant payroll), James Dolan (owner of the New York Knicks),  Isiah Thomas (former Knicks general manager), Michael Bloomberg (mayor of New York City), and Rudy Guliani.  He also loved to get on former President George W. Bush.

Dante’s Inferno

November 11, 2014 – Union College freshman quarterback Dante Cioffi was on fire, passing for 389 yards and six touchdowns in a 49-32 Garnet win over Merchant Marine Academy on Saturday afternoon.  The six TD passes broke a school record, and the 389 yards through the airways was the third highest single-game total in Union history.  Kyle Reynolds, a senior, was at the receiving end of four of Cioffi’s scoring strikes.

The Beast

I’ve seen him play.  I’ve read a lot about him.  I am certain that Class B Schalmont High School football star Nick Gallo, known as “The Beast”, would be a star at the Class A and AA high school levels.  The Sabre quarterback has consistently put up big numbers on offense both though the air and on the ground the last two years.  He also has given opponents fits from his linebacker position on the defensive side of the ball.  The last Schalmont game, played on November 8, was no different.  Gallo led the Sabres to a resounding 40-8 win over a highly-rated Schuylerville team to for the Sabres’ fifth Section II Class B championship in six years. “The Beast”  hammered away at the Black Horses, running for four touchdowns and throwing for another.  He scored on runs of 14, 31, 17, and 30 yards.  There is no doubt that Nick Gallo is truly “a beast”.

MVP Stockade-athon a Very Popular Event

The MVP Stockade-athon, which is run in Schenectady, has shown a dramatic increase in number of participants over the last six or seven years.  This year’s event is expecting well over 1,800 runners.  The race has increased in number of participants every year since 2007.  The race will take place on Sunday, November 9. Runners will begin their trek from Veterans Park and the MVP building on State Street at 8:30 a.m. and finish on Franklin Street next to City Hall.  Runners will run through the Stockade, up Nott Street and over other city streets, through Central Park, and then head downtown by way of Vale Cemetary and Vale Park.  Vince Juliano is the race director.

The “Big Game” That Was Never Played

Schenectady’s 1954 Nott Terrace and Mont Pleasant High School football teams were 5-0 under  coaches Pete Shulha and Larry Mulvaney.  Both teams finished the season at 5-0.  The Red Raiders gave up only one touchdown against Amsterdam, and outscored its opponents 171-6.  The Blue Devils scored 193 points and gave up just 33, extending its two-year undefeated record to 12-0.  Unfortunately, due to an outbreak of polio and postponement of the game, the two juggernauts never got to play each other.  Together, the two “loaded” teams combined to place 11 players on the All-County team that year.  Nott Terrace’s Alonzo Burnham, John Bezio, Derry Cooke, Dick Kaczmarek, and Ed Wilgocki, and Mont Pleasant’s Joe Green, Larry Pivacek, Mickey Petrolle, Lou DeMarco, Mickey Ferraro, and Bob Patrick were named to the team.

Oneida Junior High 65 – Pat Riley 29

Pat Riley played basketball for Central Park Junior High School in the late 1950s.  They competed against cross-city rival Oneida twice yearly.  Oneida always beat Riley’s teams by scores of something like 65-34.  Oneida had balanced scoring, and Riley would score 28 or 29 of his team’s points.  Talk about a man among boys and a real dominant force on the basketball floor.