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Passaic Valley Sends Off Twelve Future College Athletes on Athletic Signing Day

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Derek Pezo '19 and Grace Rose '19
17 June 2019

On June 7th, the 3rd annual Athletic Signing Day was held for twelve student athletes on their way to collegiate athletics. The presentation was held during 2nd period in the Senior Cafe, in which the students were joined by their families to rejoice in their accomplishments. Coaches of the respected sport were also invited to elaborate on the impact their athlete had on PV and officially send them to the college level.

Athletic Signing Day Video Slideshow

Athletic Director Mr. Joseph Benvenuti was in charge of organizing Athletic Signing Day. As a past college athlete himself, he recognizes the importance of such an event and wanted to personally commemorate these athletes. “It's important to showcase our student athletes, since they keep Passaic Valley in such a positive light at all times,” stated Benvenuti.

Between the three seasons throughout the year, it isn't unlikely to see a student’s name in the newspaper for their performance in their sport. Not only are they outstanding on the field, but their work ethic is no different in the classroom. Many of these students are also part of numerous honor societies, and have made the superintendent’s commended list while balancing school and sports.

Athletic Signing Day group photo; photo credit: Kevin Ratta

Athletic Signing Day Photo Gallery

“I think we owe that little bit of gratitude to them, for all their hard work,” said Benvenuti. “Since only twelve athletes are moving on to play in college, it isn’t something that is easy to do.”

There are students from six different sports moving on to the next level:

Arben Adili, Chad Cole, and Steven Nitch were exceptional baseball players. Adili will continue to play at Fairleigh Dickinson University, Cole will play at Susquehanna University, and Nitch will be at the State College Of Florida.

Lacrosse has three athletes playing in college. Catherine Bennett will be at Wesley College and Trinity Toerock will play at The College of Saint Rose. Thien Dinh-Do will play at Georgia Tech.

From field hockey, Emily Hyde will continue her athletic career at Stevens Institute.

These Passaic Valley student athletes are proud to compete at the collegiate level while working toward their future goals. "I am excited to continue playing lacrosse at Georgia Tech while continuing my academic career at a top tier school," said Dinh-Do.

Trinity Toerock is very excited to be part of the College of Saint Roses' first lacrosse program. "It will be such a cool experience and PV has really helped me condition and become fast on the field," said Toerock. "Coach Demsey really pushed us to our limits and helped me grow as an athlete and person."

From track and field, there will be two boys moving on to pursue running on the next level. Franco Iacovo will run at Caldwell University and Derek Pezo will be at Montclair State University.

Football also two players who made their collegiate teams. Matthew Jaeger will be at Lycoming College and Antwan Rogers will be at Albright College.

The final athlete continuing their athletic career at the collegiate level is Alex Papasavas, who will be fencing at Vassar College.