Welcome to 2016! The UNIS winter sports season is well underway, with impressive wins, influential lessons learned, and high expectations for the weeks and months ahead. Read on for our first UNIS Athletics Update of the New Year. –Duncan Davison, Athletic Director
Triple Impact Competitors
According to the Positive Coaching Alliance, a triple-impact competitor makes positive contributions on three levels:
•Making themselves better (personal mastery);
•Making teammates better (leadership);
•Making the sport better (honoring the game).
UNIS Coaches have nominated the following players as triple impact competitors for their contributions over the past two weeks:
Anouk M. and Prajna N. – Girls' Junior Varsity Basketball—After watching center Anouk M. score 16 points and grab 10 rebounds in a victory over Loyola last week, Head Coach Jim Hunter shared some comments on her development: "Anouk makes her teammates better and has a great attitude," he reflected. "She also displays great hustle in every game, and was particularly outstanding in the Loyola win."
Coach Hunter, while praising the effort of his entire roster, also highlighted the recent performances of Prajna Naidoo, labeling the point guard's play as "contagious." We hear that the coach is especially impressed with Prajna's mental toughness, leadership, and teamwork – the signs of a true triple-impact competitor!
Frederick F. and Harry M. – Boys' Middle School Basketball (White)—Head Coach Troy Basso paused thoughtfully when asked to reveal his nominations for this edition of the Athletics update: "I wish that I could put a spotlight on the entire team," Basso lamented. "Each player played a very important role in our first victory of the season. They were so enthusiastic, cheering for each other on. I'm happy to see that our hard work in practice is starting to carry over to the games."
"With that being said, two student-athletes really set the tone for our win with their leadership and enthusiasm – Frederick F. and Harry M."
Nicole L. and Camilla K. – Girls' Middle School Basketball—According to Head Coach Andrew Hoffman, "Nicole and Camilla have constantly shown that they are growing – not only as basketball players, but as people. They both have shown fantastic leadership skills by talking to their teammates, and often leading by example on and off the court. They have always respected the game by coming prepared and ready for every practice and game."
Adam C. – Boys' Middle School Basketball (Queens)—Word on the Queens campus is that Head Coach Bill Axmacher is raving about Adam C.'s unselfish attitude. "He sets a great example for the team," confirms the laid-back Axmacher. "He always gives maximum effort on the court and for that reason, he wins my nomination this time around."
Ben R. – Boys' Varsity Basketball—"Ben works diligently on improving his game, which is very well-rounded given the hybrid nature of his position," Head Coach Barry Gonzalez tells us. "Ben's size, ball handling, and shooting range provides flexibility when making substitutions during the game, and providing opportunities for other players. He does not hesitate offering his opinion during practice or games and to the coaches. His involvement goes a long way towards making it a pleasure to a part of the BVB team."
Lina-Henriette S. – Girls' Varsity Basketball—We approached Varsity Assistant Coach Jah-Leah Ellis to get the scoop on Lina-Henriette, a student-athlete known for balancing her athletic success with her academics. "Lina is understanding just how important she is to our team's success, but she isn't letting that get to her head," says Ellis. "She challenges everyone to be a better version of themselves, and is learning to speak up more as well as lead by example on the court."
Max B. and Anna L. – Varsity Indoor Track and Field—Head Coach Howard Lindsay knows talent – as a veteran of three Olympic Games, the former sprinter has achieved great success while coaching at UNIS. He says that two athletes in particular have caught his eye recently – Max B. and Anna L..
"Max is extremely focused during competition," Lindsay reveals. "He leads by example on the track, and shows good sportsmanship to teammates who don't do so well in competition. In regards to Anna, what is really impressive about her is that she congratulates rivals after a race, even if she loses to them. She constantly pushes herself during a race, and paces the distance runners during practice."
Well done to all UNIS student-athletes who received nominations in this edition of the Athletics Update!
Team Feature: Boys JV Basketball Team—written by UNIS Junior Zachary W.
The Boys Junior Varsity Basketball Team has gotten off to a good start to the season, ranking 4th in the league with a 6-4 record. A large part of their success has been team morale and team chemistry on and off the court, big points of emphasis for co-captains Charles E. and Soyer E.. In separate conversations with each of the two, both emphasized "communication on offense and defense", as keys in continuing to win games. They went on to emphasize that they wished to improve their own personal skills as a means of improving their individual contributions to the team, stating that the ultimate goal of every team member is to "bringing another championship to UNIS".
The growth of these young players as team members on their road to success is to be specifically commended. Even in defeat the boys manage to stay positive, finding humor and inspiration in mishaps. In a recent 50-34 loss against Browning, the team collectively missed four free throws. Instead of allowing the mistake-riddled defeat to get to them, the team, Epstein says, took the loss as an opportunity to learn. "We were missing a couple of players so we didn't blame one person for the loss. As a team, we actually discussed it [after the game], and what we should do in the future to improve."
With such a positive attitude, it's no wonder the team has such high expectations for themselves. Elder said of his ideas for the rest of the season, "I predict that we'll at least qualify for playoffs, and if we show that we want it by playing and working hard for each other, I could see us winning the championship." When asked about how realistic these aspirations were, he replied confidently, "With the kids we have on this team I could see us achieving that."
The Junior Varsity team represents the future of UNIS basketball, as they will soon be taking on the roles of Varsity contributors. Given their maturity and growing success, it appears a bright future is ahead.
Coaches Corner: Brenton Young – Assistant Coach of UNIS Boys' Junior Varsity Basketball
An oft-repeated cliché in sports posits that in order for one to achieve success, they must overcome adversity.
It's a sentiment that JV Assistant Coach Brenton Young knows all too well. As a promising High School senior, his hopes of playing college basketball came to an abrupt end after suffering a spiral fracture in his right hand. "The injury turned out to really limit my potential to play college basketball," he says. "I was able to make a comeback and play high school basketball later in the year...but I was never the same."
Young would not be deterred for long. He used the disappointment as motivation to develop his pedigree as a coach; first by gaining experience at various clinics and camps in his home state of New Jersey, then more recently, by attaining a USA Basketball coaching license. Now 20-years-old and a sophomore at St. John's University, his ambition is matched only by his drive. "I strive to become a big time college basketball coach," he admits. "I have a clear philosophy of the game - I am a defensive-minded coach. I believe defense has the biggest impact on a young player's game, while also being the easiest facet of the game to fix. I am always absorbing ideas and information, and really enjoy the experience of coaching at UNIS."
With a bright future ahead, Coach Young now takes solace in a new adage: "If it is to be, then it is up to me," he says.
Watch this space for another coach profile in the next athletics update!
Upcoming Home Basketball Games
Wednesday January 13
Boys' Middle School Basketball (White) vs. Friends Seminary (4:30pm tip-off)
Thursday January 14
Boys' Middle School Basketball (Blue) vs. Trevor Day School (4:15pm tip-off)
Friday January 15
Girls' Varsity Basketball vs. Leman Manhattan (4:15pm tip-off)
Tuesday January 19
Girls' Middle School Basketball (Queens) vs. Manhattan Country Day School (4:00pm tip-off)
Boys' Junior Varsity Basketball vs. Columbia Prep (4:00pm tip-off)
Wednesday January 20
Boys' Middle School Basketball (Queens) vs. Stephen Gaynor School (4:00pm tip-off)
Boys' Junior Varsity Basketball vs. Martin Luther High School (4:15pm tip-off)
Boys' Varsity Basketball vs. Martin Luther High School (6:00pm tip-off)
Thursday January 21
Girls' Middle School Basketball vs. LFNY (4:00pm tip-off)
Girls' Varsity Basketball vs. LFNY (5:15pm tip-off)
Friday January 22
Boys' Varsity Basketball vs. Columbia Prep (4:15pm tip-off)
Monday January 25
Boys' Varsity Basketball vs. Loyola School (4:15pm tip-off)
Boys' Junior Varsity Basketball vs. Loyola School (5:45pm tip-off)
Tuesday January 26
Boys' Middle School Basketball (Queens) vs. Speyer Legacy School (4:00pm tip-off)
Boys' Junior Varsity Basketball vs. Trevor Day School (4:15pm tip-off)
Boys' Varsity Basketball vs. Trevor Day School (5:30pm tip-off)
Girls' Varsity (2-5; 1-4 in NYCAL)
@ Loyola, 1/5, 27-39 L
@ Calhoun School, 1/8, 36-38 L
Boys' Varsity (8-5; 4-3 in NYCAL)
@ Columbia Prep, 12/16, 70-88 L;
vs. Grace Church, 1/7, 63-47 W;
@ Calhoun School, 1/8, 63-46 W
@ Browning School, 1/11, 57-37 W
Girls' Junior Varsity (3-4; 1-3 in NYCAL)
vs. Loyola, 1/5, 40-18 W
vs. Grace Church School, 1/11, 28-25 W
Boys' Junior Varsity (6-4; 4-3 in NYCAL)
@ Columbia Prep, 12/16, 40-62 L;
@ Browning School, 1/7, 34-50 L
Girls' Middle School (1-4; 1-3 in NYCAL)
@ Town School, 1/6, 14-38
Boys' Middle School (Blue) (1-7; 0-5 in NYCAL)
@ Trevor Day School, 12/15, 32-33 L;
vs. Columbia Prep, 12/17, 22-72 L;
@ Town School, 1/6, 30-56 L
Boys' Middle School (White) (1-4, 0-3 in AIPSL)
@ Trevor Day School, 1/7, 21-18 W
Indoor Track & Field
Ivy League Meet Results – December 9, 2015
Girls 1600m (31 total runners)
Noella K. - 13th (6:10.03)
Janice C.- 17th (6:28.46)
Girls 600m (45 total runners)
Ada S. - 12th (1:57.14)
Girls 1000m (34 total runners)
Natasha C. - 15th (3:40.85)
Savaria S. - 29th (3:59.24)
Defne L. - 33rd (4:30.74)
Girls 300m (99 total runners)
Isis G. – 5th (3:40.85)
Cate T. - 81st (58.33)
Kadijah H.- 83rd (58.99)
Girls 55m (86 total runners)
Isis G. - 19th (8.26)
Manuella H. - 33rd (8.53)
Melina N. - 61st (9.09)
Sophie G. - 83rd (9.77)
Boys 1600m (45 total runners)
Sean W. - 17th (5:08.87)
Ben G. - 40th (6:05.48)
Boys 600m (40 total runners)
Daragh M. - 27th (1:50.18)
Raymond F. - 30th (1:52.49)
Boys 1000m (50 total runners)
Sean W. - 14th (3:07.90)
Max B. - 16th (3:10.37)
Boys 55m (48 total runners)
Matthias T. - 26th (7:69)
Juan L. - 30th (7.88)
Danial R. 34th (8:03
Ivy League Meet Results – January 6, 2016
Girls 1600m (43 total runners)
Anna L. - 10th (5:59.53)
Noella K. - 19th (6:19.26)
Lila O. - 20th (6:24.44)
Girls 1000m (21 total runners)
Natasha C. - 8th (3:41.52)
Defne L. - 21st (4:27.07)
Girls 55m (92 total runners)
Veronika C. - 15th (8.10)
Manuella H. - 31th (8.42)
Melina N. - 61st (8.99)
Boys 1600m(43 total runners)
Sean W. - 14th (5:16.30)
Boys 1000m (43 total runners)
Max B. - 10th (3:04.90)
Sean W. - 20th (3:13.15)
Raymong F. - 37th (3:31.34)
Boys 55m (39 total runners)
Matthias T. - 16th (7:79)
Danial R. - 30th (8:49)
Spring Season Preliminary Survey
On Tuesday, January 19, students will receive a link via Schoology asking them to indicate if they intend to try out for a specific sport in the spring season. It is very important that potential student athletes complete this form to help with planning.
There are a variety of athletic opportunities for students at UNIS on the weekends. The Weekend Sports Programs for Semester 2 will begin on January 30, 2016, and registration is now open. For detailed information & registration, see http://www.unis.org/page.cfm?p=567 (or visit the UNIS website and click on the "Athletics" tab, followed by "Weekend Sports").
Saturday Junior Basketball Clinics – J3 & J4 Students
The UNIS Basketball Saturday Morning Junior Clinics aim to develop and build upon the skills of shooting, passing dribbling, footwork, and ball handling. In a fun, safe, and engaging environment, our young athletes will also improve motor skills such as running, jumping, and sliding while developing a love and appreciation of the game.
Dates: 1/30, 2/6, 2/27, 3/5, 3/12, 4/9, 4/23, 4/30, 5/7
Saturday Tut House Basketball Club (Mixed)
The Tut House Basketball Club is open to T1-T4 students. In a relaxed and safe environment, Tut House students will have the opportunity to participate in an intermural type competition with the focus being on healthy fun, skill development an maximum participation. Open to all levels and abilities.
Dates: 1/30, 2/6, 2/27, 3/5, 3/12, 4/9, 4/23, 4/30, 5/7
Saturday Volleyball Club (Mixed)
The Volleyball Club is open to all M1 – Tut 4 students. In a relaxed and safe environment, Tut House students will have the opportunity to participate in an intermural type competition with the focus being on healthy fun, skill development and maximum participation. Open to all levels and abilities.
Dates: 1/30, 2/6, 2/27, 3/5, 3/12, 4/9, 4/23, 4/30, 5/7
Sunday Advantage Quick Start Tennis at UNIS (Ages 5-10) *External Registration
Advantage Quick Start is a pathway to tennis skills, confidence, fun- even competition. Designed exclusively boys and girls ages 4 and up, children play with age and size- appropriate racquets on smaller courts using special slow- bouncing balls. Lessons take place at UNIS gym on Sunday mornings and commence Sunday February 7, 2016
Sunday Advanced Tennis Clinics (Mixed)
The Sunday Advanced Tennis Clinics are open to high intermediate/ advanced tennis players (M2 – Tut 4). Students wishing to participate will have at least 2-3 years tennis experience, be able to confidently serve, rally and score. After an initial evaluation session, students are placed in a one- hour time slot (between 9:00am – 1:00pm) with other students according to their abilities at the coach's discretion. Athletes participate in competitive internal scrimmages while receiving specialized instructional coaching.
Dates: 1/31, 2/7, 2/28, 3/6, 3/13, 4/10, 4/24, 5/1, 5/8
Group Assessment Session – January 31st 9-11am
Intermediate Trials: 9am -11am
Advanced Trials: 11am - 1pm
NB: Internal ranked scrimmages commence start February 7th.
Girls On The Run Program
This is a reminder of a very exciting program "Girls on the Run," which will start in the Spring season for Middle School girls (grades M2 - M4). The program was run very successfully in the Junior School over the fall season and had 20 Junior School girls participating. The girls (and their parents) loved the program. In fact, they had so much fun, that the JS "Girls on the Run" program (J2 - M1) is going again in the Spring season.
A number of middle school girls have already confirmed their participation but there are still some places available. The cost of the program is $275. If your daughter [M2 - M4] is interested in being part of the MS "Girls on the Run" program starting the week of March 14, please e mail Helen Stephan at firstname.lastname@example.org. Actual registration will open soon. If you have a daughter in M1 who is interested in being a part of the JS "Girls on the Run" spring program, please also e mail Helen.