KINGS POINT, N.Y. (Sept. 26, 2016) – Homecoming 2016 again featured our soccer alumni showing their stuff back at the Academy. Following the Mariners 3-2 Skyline Conference win over St. Joseph's-Brooklyn, some Mariners from yesteryear took to the field. The alums looked as if they hadn't aged at all, as they displayed some terrific soccer.
Nick Palumbo '06, now a professor at USMMA, "schooled" everyone with two goals, one with each foot. Joe Castro '08, the new Coast Guard Liaison at the Academy showed the same level of competitiveness when he left, finishing a right footed blast with style. J.D. Schampera '91, who played on the first Mariner squad coached by Head Coach Mike Smolens, showed how fitness and tenacity don't have to leave you as one ages, as he battled for the ball both on offense and defense.
Recent alum Alex Maney '15 got some revenge on his old mates with a curving finish and a number of other good attacks. Bill Leske '69 was the oldest player who took part and finished a left footed penalty kick into the upper corner.
It was great to see a number of other former Mariners on campus. Among them were: Russ Brown '97, Wes Knapp '91, Kevin Fitzpatrick '93, Gus Proios '69, Ralph Letner '81, Dave Gilmartin '78 and Mike Morrow '61. Also present was the parents of former Mariner standout Kenny Graff '01. Among the neatest parts was when Plebe Patrick McLaughlin (Allentown, Pa.), the son of Academy graduate Bryan McLaughlin '82, scored a goal against the alums.
"It was great for our current players to hear of the success of our grads and learn that all the hard work at the Academy is worth it," commented Smolens.
Following the action, players from both teams celebrated the afternoon by enjoying a delicious lunch together, looking at old pictures, telling stories and sharing the Kings Point soccer experience.
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Release written by Head Coach Michael Smolens