A spring signing ceremony on May 16 honored 10 students who have committed to college athletic programs next fall. Families, coaches, and friends of the athletes were in attendance in the lobby of the Sabina Cain Family Athletic Center as Director of Athletics Mark Conroy summarized these seniors’ accomplishments.
Distance runner Sophia Prouty of Southampton is headed to Saint John Fisher in Rochester, NY, to compete for the Empire 8 Conference Cardinals. A post-graduate student, she led her former school, Hampshire Regional, to the league championships in 2018. “It is an outstanding feeling to cross the finish line in first place,” she said, “but it is an even better feeling when you win as a team.”
Her time at Williston moved her closer to her dream of running at the college level, a goal she set back in middle school. “I truly believe that his year has not only prepared me for college, but it has prepared me for the real world,” she said.
Track and Field coach Chris Pelliccia praised Prouty’s persistence. “She was off to a great start in track before some leg pain set her back in the distance races. As both the weather and her health improved, she was able to spend more time focusing on her second event, triple jump. She would qualify for the New England’s in the triple, despite getting only a few healthy practices devoted to it. Sophia stands to make big gains in college with consistent year-round training, and we’re looking forward to hearing about her success at Saint John Fisher.”
Three-sport (volleyball, basketball, and track) captain Gates MacPherson of Ontario, Canada, committed to the track team of the Endicott College (Beverly, MA) Gulls in the Commonwealth Coast Conference. Coach Pelliccia described her unique set of skills: “Gates came to us as an established track athlete in the discus and high jump. At Williston she was able to pursue both. Throwing and jumping is an unusual double, yet Gates handled the balance in training and competing perfectly,” he said. MacPherson earned a NEPSAC Div II title in the discus this year.
“I hope to be a better, stronger, faster version of myself by being in a new environment and training with collegiate coaches,” she said.
Cole Drugotch said he is excited to hit the gridiron for the Sacred Heart Pioneers in Fairfield, CT. The wide receiver from Stow, MA, is completing a post-graduate year at Williston Northampton School after helping secure a state championship as a senior at Saint John’s High School in Shrewsbury, MA.
“Cole has experienced tremendous growth over the course of the year, culminating in his all-conference selection,” said football head coach Tommy Beaton. “I expect him to have a great college career and am confident we will be hearing big things about him at Sacred Heart over the next four years.”
Reilly Gluz of Syracuse, NY, will take his swimming chops to Wheaton in Norton, MA. Gluz, whose main events are the 100 butterfly and the 200 freestyle, came in third at the NEPSAC championships and was one of four “swimmers of the meet” at Williston’s first Wilmot Babcock Invitational swim meet, which the Wildcats won.
“I drop large amounts of time every year and I hope to continue that,” he said.
“Reilly has been the emotional catalyst for our team over the past three years and his presence on deck will be sorely missed,” said Swimming and Diving coach David Koritkoski. “His attitude and energy are infectious and he has certainly left a lasting impression on our program. I expect he will have similar success at the next level and Wheaton will be well-served by having him with them.”
Lames Lustig will head to Bronxvile, NY, to play basketball for the Sarah Lawrence College Gryphons in the Skyline Conference. Lustig, from Wenham, MA, was a big part of the Wildcats’ run to the NEPSAC finals, which they lost in a heartbreaker. Lustig did not attend the ceremony.
Another Wildcat hoopster, Abood Abuissa of New York City, will attend Sacred Heart in Fairfield and play for the Division I Pioneers in the Northeast Conference. “This three-year player and two-year captain was a huge part of our team’s success as we headed to the championship game,” said Mark Conroy, director of athletics.
“It feels like my work has paid off,” said Abuissa, a combo guard who attended Williston for three years. “I’ve always wanted to play at the college level and at a high level. I’m really excited to see how I’ll adapt to the level of play. I feel physically ready to go into pre-season and start preparing with the team.”
Fellow basketball player, forward John Kelly of Shelton, CT, plans to head to Fairfield University in Fairfield, CT, to play for the Division I Stags in the Metro Atlantic Conference. Kelly, who attended Williston for one year, said it was “nothing short of amazing. The community accepted me with open arms and has helped me to reach my goals as an individual. Words cannot describe how thankful I am toward the Williston community and to be a Wildcat for life.” Playing college basketball has been a dream of his since middle school.
A postgraduate from East Longmeadow, MA, Brendan Nehmer will head to Stonehill College in Easton, MA, to play hockey for the DII Skyhawks in the Northeast-10 Conference. The forward said it has been his dream to play college hockey since he was a child.
Cam Mariani of Wilbraham will head to the Wentworth Institute of Technology in Boston to play hockey for the DIII Leopards in the Commonwealth Coast Conference. “Cam lead our team in points as a senior, but more impressive is that his production nearly tripled from his junior year,” said ice hockey head coach Derek Cunha. “This was a direct result of his hard work on and off the ice and his attitude to continually push himself to be better. Wentworth should be a great fit for Cam as he will be able to play hockey at a high level while combining it with his academic goal of studying engineering.”
Defensive hockey player Timothy Rego of Masnfield, MA, is thrilled to be heading to Holy Cross in Worcester, MA to play for the DI Crusaders in the Patriot League. Although he described it as a “surreal” feeling. Rego began his Williston career in his sophomore year. “If I had the choice, I would restart the whole thing,” he said. “It has been an unbelievable experience here.”
Photos of the event are here.