Ben Pickman, ’15
Derek Zoolander, the title character from the movie Zoolander, once said, “How can we be expected to teach children to learn how to read if they can’t even fit inside the building?” While our school does not have a problem teaching students how to read, we do have a small building. But unlike Derek Zoolander, our small building and limited practice space were not major deterrents to our fall sports teams.
Playing in the Manhattan A division, the toughest division in the city, the Boys soccer team (7-5-1) knew that they had to take every opponent seriously. Even though the Raptors had plenty of experience, the team suffered from the loss of many key players who graduated last year. “This season was very successful considering that many of our important seniors left last season and we had 2-3 freshman who started every game,” said Y2 captain Peter Freitag. He added that “all the other teams in our division are mostly comprised of seniors that are bigger and stronger than most of our players. It’s a huge disadvantage.”
Even with a size disadvantage, the Raptors made it to the playoffs, falling to Newcomers high school 2-0 in the first round. They battled the entire game, but were simply out-played by a superior opponent. Freitag, the team’s leading assist man along with Y2 Alfred Crooks, the team’s vocal leader, acknowledged just how well the team meshed. “One of the unique things about this season [was that] we were a solid unit from the seniors to the freshman and each grade played their part,” said Crooks. Y1 Vinzenz Eckl scored a team high of 11 goals and looks poised to take on an even bigger role next season as a result of the departure of a talented senior class.
Though the Girls soccer team finished with a 5-6-3 record and missed the playoffs, they proved they could compete with some of the best teams in the city. Late in the season, they drew 1-1 with Bronx High School of Science, a city finalist for the fourth straight season. Y2 midfielder and captain Katherine Safter said she was “incredibly proud of all our hard work and solid play throughout the season. On and off the field each and every player put forth their best effort.” She added that “the tie against the number one seed Bronx Science was definitely a highlight.” Freshman Melenia Rahaman emerged as a center piece of the Raptors offense, leading the team with 11 goals. Even though record-wise the Raptors took a step back from last season’s stellar season, the team is in a position to continue to contend in Manhattan A for years to come. Congrats to Katie for being selected to participate in the Mayors Cup, an all-star game for the best players in the city.
While they finished with a 5-7 record and failed to make the playoffs, the Girls Volleyball team seemed to take strides forward as the season progressed. Under new leadership led by Ms. Shultz, the Girls Volleyball team had to adjust to a different style of coaching. Even though they got off to a rough start, losing three of their first five games, the team never got down on each other and continued to be supportive of one another. “We were all genuinely friends. We talked about our lives and gossiped together. We all just loved Volleyball. What a special crew” said Y2 Simone Messer. With five players graduating this year, the Girls Volleyball team will be a young, improving team next year.
This fall also marked a debut season for both the Boys and Girls Cross Country team. With many of the same faces as the Spring Track and Field Team, the Cross Country team seemed to achieve tons of success especially for a new team in a small school.
In the Winter, BHSEC trots out both a Girls and Boys Basketball team. Both teams could actually defeat the Philadelphia 76ers which is either a testament to their talent or just how bad the Sixers are. Check PSAL.org or Dr. Lerner’s weekly email for updates on their upcoming seasons.