Lori Mahan

Lori Mahan

Thursday, 11 October 2018 11:35

Gun Ban at Saratoga Springs CSD

SARATOGA SPRINGS — After weeks of debate, the Saratoga Springs City School District board of education voted 5 to 4 on Tuesday, October 9, to end the practice of school hallway monitors carrying firearms. In a public forum in the beginning of the meeting, several community members, parents and students alike, came out in favor of voting no, while another community member and teacher urged the board to vote yes to keep the guns.

The people who spoke out against the guns reasoned that the school has not done enough research on the matter, commenting that there was “no task force, no committee, no public forums, no question-and-answer periods.”

Michelle King, a member of Saratoga Conservative Chicks, was in favor of a yes vote, explaining that the hallway monitors are there to protect their children and “they can’t do it without the tools.” Superintendent Michael Patton reminded those in attendance that the district’s main concern is the safety of the students and staff.

Thursday, 04 October 2018 10:39

S. T. O. P.

SARATOGA COUNTY — Jim Mangano, a licensed high school varsity girls’ soccer referee for the last 20 years, is involved with the S.T.O.P. Movement, which stands for: Stop Tormenting Officials Permanently. S.T.O.P. was started over a year ago by a referee named Brian Barlow, from Tulsa, Oklahoma whose goal is to decrease the incivility, violence, and referee abuse in all sports.

“The environment itself… Either it’s winning is everything or it’s the only thing that will make you happy is if you win,” said Mangano.

Mangano appears in all games that he refs wearing his S.T.O.P. vest. He spends time at each game talking to fans, players, and families about what the movement is and how they can help.

“When it comes down to a ref being on a field, we’re held to a standard where we can’t turn around and say anything, because for one, we’re licensed, we recertify every year in every group that we’re in. Then people look at us and say, ‘but you get paid to do this.’ So, it’s like I get paid to take the abuse. That just doesn’t fly,” Mangano explained.

Mangano has refed games where he’s taken it to the extremes. If he sees a player who is knowingly aggressive, he’ll blow the whistle before they actually do something to someone because from watching them, he knows they’re going to hit that person, which then puts him in a conundrum because the parents say there was no contact.

“One of the things I’ve also had to do over the years is intervene between parents and players on the field. I’ve had to say, ‘by yelling at them, you’re taking your child’s head out of the game.’ That’s a dangerous situation for them because they’re not focused, they might get hurt. Then that also leads to what comes back to us as refs is when they say, ‘you’re not looking out for the safety of our players,’” he explained.

As Mangano explains it, there are four different groups while refereeing a game: the coach, the parents, the players, and the refs.

“Everybody comes to the game, except the referee, because they want the win and they also point fingers. You call a foul on a player; the parents want revenge, the coach wants revenge,” Mangano said.

The bottom line is: Mangano has seen it all over the last 20 years. Parents physically fighting each other; parents and coaches threatening him and other refs; police officers having to escort refs off the field for their own safety. While he doesn’t imply that it’s every parent or coach who is volatile, it’s the few that are who put a damper on the environment for the rest.

“I haven’t refed a game in five years without having a cell phone in my pocket,” he explained.


Because he believes that if he can catch the bad behavior on video, parents and coaches alike would be too ashamed to act that way again.

For more information on the S.T.O.P. Movement, visit www. facebook.com/youreoffside, the original site for the movement created by Brian Barlow.

Thursday, 04 October 2018 13:50

Local All-Star Moments



- Saratoga Central Catholic hosted Mechanicville in a Wasaren League match on Thursday, Sept 27. The Saints won 3-0. Scores 25-18, 25-14,25-18. 
Highlights for the Saints: 7-1 league 7-2 overall; Catherine Darcy 20 service points, 9 aces, 3 digs; Elise Browell 11 assist, 8 service points, 2 aces; Kennedy Murphy 5 kills; MaryClare Pikus 5 digs; Grace O’Reilly 6 service, points 3 kills. 
Highlights for the Red Raiders: 5-3 league 7-3 overall; Kaitlin Coleman 7 service points, 3 aces, 6 assist; Lyndsay Robens 4 points, 2 kills.

- Saratoga Central Catholic hosted Tamarac in league play on Monday, Oct 1. The Saints won 3-0. Scores 25-20,25-18,25-20. 
Highlights for the Saints: 8-1 league, 8-2 overall; Elise Browell  11 points, 3 aces, 20 assist; Kennedy Murphy 8 kills; MaryClare Pikus  3 kills, 7 digs; Grace O’Reilly  11 points, 6 aces, 7 kills; Molly O’Reilly 11 points, 5 aces. 
Highlights for the Bengals: 6-5 league 7-5 overall; Maddie Murphy 6 blocks. 1 kill; Bella Realbuto 5 kills, 4 blocks; Kerianne Bugbee 3 kills, 4 blocks, 8 service points, 6 aces.




Saratoga 4 v. Warrensburg 1 
Saratoga Scoring: 
Lindsey Frank assisted by Molly Russell. 
Hunter Yourch assisted by Lindsey Frank. 
Kylie Folts assisted by Lindsey Frank.
Jane Ginley assisted by Danielle Geils.
Warrensburg Scoring:
Abigail Ranous assisted by Marina Callahan. 

Saratoga Scoring: 
Olivia Vukelic 
Lindsey Frank 
Warrensburg Scoring: 
Sara Langworthy
Final Score:
Toga 6 v. Warrensburg 2 
Corners: Toga - 8 | Warrensburg - 7 
Shots: Toga - 30 | Warrensburg - 18 
Saratoga Goalies: Kristen Rodecker and Emma Piccirillo  - 11 saves 
Warrensburg Goalie: Bella DeAmelia - 15 saves 
Saratoga 9-2



COLCHESTER, VT — In the home opener against Southern New Hampshire, St. Michael’s College first-year, Grace Fornabia, of Saratoga Springs/Saratoga Central Catholic had six kills and a block.



SARATOGA COUNTY — The Saratoga Springs Blue Streaks walloped the visiting Niskayuna Silver Warriors football team by a count of 56-13 in Friday’s league outing. With the win, Saratoga Springs upgrades its record to 4-1 on the season. The Blue Streaks travel to Guilderland to confront the Flying Dutchman in a Section II AA outing on Friday, October 5. The Troy Flying Horses football squad scored 27 points and limited the host Ballston Spa Scotties to 14 in the Flying Horses non-league win on Friday, Sept. 28. The Flying Horses now possess a 4-1 record. They play next when they host Columbia for a Section II A- Capital battle on Friday, October 5. In Friday, Sept. 28, non-league match, the host Schuylerville Horses football squad scored a good 56-34 victory over the Schalmont Sabres. In their next game, the Horses clash with the Hudson Falls Tigers (Hudson Falls) in a Section II B-North match, on Saturday, October 6. Schuylerville will attempt to move on its 3-2 season record.


Thursday, 04 October 2018 13:46

Athlete of the Week: MaryClare Pikus

SARATOGA SPRINGS — MaryClare Pikus, a senior at Saratoga Central Catholic, is a star on the volleyball court. She has been playing volleyball for the last six years.

“The season is going great! Everyone on the team is working really hard and giving it their all, every single game,” Pikus said.

Pikus’ sister was also a volleyball player and watching her play inspired her to give it a try.

“My older sister played volleyball in high school and I watched almost every game when I was younger. Watching her and her team work hard together made me want to play volleyball myself, and I did as soon as I could in seventh grade,” Pikus explained.

Aside from volleyball, she also played softball for six years and stopped last season.

Teamwork makes the dream work and Pikus is inspired and in awe of her team.

“We all get along so well and it makes the experience so much fun. Playing volleyball with my team is like playing with a group of my close friends. I am going to miss it very much,” she said.

While Coach Maria Izzo has high praise for Pikus, she has high praise for her beloved coach as well.

“Coach Izzo is a great coach. She always knows what to say and when to say it. She can pick us back up when we begin to fall down in games and tells us exactly what we need to hear,” Pikus complimented.

She credits her dad as her biggest supporter.

“He always comes to my matches, even if they are a long distance away. He always makes me feel better when I don’t play my best during tough matches,” she said. Pikus has big dreams for the next ten years. “I hope to be a neuroscientist and work on research to help those with memory issues and other diseases affecting the brain,” she stated.

To see Pikus and the Spa Catholic Saints in action, check out our Sports at a Glance page for upcoming matches.

Thursday, 04 October 2018 13:43

Skidmore Excellence

SARATOGA SPRINGS — Skidmore College has recently been recognized in national rankings for their excellence in liberal arts, innovation, and student life. Skidmore has been ranked No. 41 by U.S. News and World Report in the National Liberal Arts Colleges; ranked in the top 50 for “Most Innovative Schools;” “High School Counselor Rankings;” “Best Value Schools;” and “Best Undergraduate Teaching.” Skidmore was also on The Princeton Review’s 2019 list of The Best 384 Colleges, along with earning top 50 positions in the “Best Campus Food,” “Great Financial Aid,” and “Best Quality of Life” categories.

It was also listed as a “10 Best Green School in America” by The Knowledge Review magazine and a “Top 50 Green College” by the Princeton Review in 2017. Among other accolades, Skidmore is also considered a “Hidden Ivy.” Skidmore does not submit themselves for these accolades, rather, they let their publicly available information and data speak for them, as well as student surveys.

“We have a wonderfully inclusive community at Skidmore. We don’t have fraternities and sororities and I think as a result there is a cohesiveness to the community that’s very appealing to students. There’s also a supportive environment amongst students, and that contributes to quality of life,” said Mary Lou Bates, vice president and dean of admissions and financial aid.

A typical class size for Skidmore is roughly 690 students and this past year they had just under 11,000 applications. The reason the campus earned a top spot with their food? The students have a say in the menu.

“They provide feedback on a bulletin board in the dining hall and our award-winning Culinarians use that input when making their menus and recipes. Students also offer ideas for special themed meals —like our upcoming Nightmare Before Christmas and Harry Potter dinners. We create our own four-week rotational cycle each semester and adjust it based on the seasons and student feedback. We use only high-quality ingredients and support local farms and businesses as much as possible,” explained Mark Miller, director of dining services.

Skidmore’s sustainability program speaks for itself.

“The Sustainability Office serves as a hub for sustainability at Skidmore. While we lead several student programs and initiatives on campus, we also partner with colleagues across campus and with community members and organizations in Saratoga Springs, all with the goal of advancing sustainability in our community. Sustainability is a broad concept and requires collective community effort, which has been growing for decades at Skidmore,” said Levi Rogers, director of sustainability programs and assessment.

Tucked away in Saratoga Springs has a lot of advantages.

“Our location in Saratoga Springs is a significant factor in students’ decisions to choose Skidmore. They like the fact that they are in a city but it’s not an urban environment. Saratoga Springs is a city with lots going on, with a strong cultural base and great restaurants and coffee shops — it complements everything that happens on campus. Students like being in the beautiful foothills of the Adirondacks and having easy access to New York City, Boston and Montreal,” Bates explained.

If anyone is on the fence about attending Skidmore, Bates has the perfect pitch for that: “What makes Skidmore unique is our strong sense of community, the breadth of choice and flexibility in our curriculum and programs, our outstanding faculty and our interdisciplinary approach that equips students for success.”

SARATOGA SPRINGS - The Saratoga Springs City School District will honor five individuals for their extraordinary contributions to athletics for the 2018 Blue Streak Athletic Hall of Fame induction ceremony at 4:30 p.m. Friday, October 12 in the Robert Meade Teaching Auditorium at Saratoga Springs High School. The program was established to recognize and celebrate the accomplishments of athletes, coaches, administrators and supporters.

This year’s inductees are Brianne Bellon, Claudia Didziulis, Rory Pedrick, Bill Scott, and Lawrence Youngblood.

Brianne Bellon, class of 2010 and member of the undefeated cross-country team, which was the suburban council, sectional, and federation champions for five years. Bellon is the current 800-meter record holder for Saratoga Springs.

Claudia Didziulis, class of 1952, participated in varsity basketball, varsity cheerleading and varsity softball. She received the first ever Section 2 Athletic Director’s Secretary of the Year Award in 1999 at the NYS Athletic Administrators Conference.

Rory Pedrick, class of 2004, participated in varsity football and varsity lacrosse. He earned the National Football Foundation Hall of Fame Scholar Athlete Award. Pedrick went on to play Division 1 Lacrosse at UMASS and made it to the National Championship. Pedrick was the first Blue Streak to be recognized twice on ESPN’s “Play of the Day.”

Bill Scott, class of 1929, participated in varsity football, varsity basketball, and varsity baseball at Saratoga Springs High School. He became the Athletic Director for Ballston Spa where he began the sports program and was the first football, baseball, and basketball coach.

Lawrence “Toby” Youngblood, class of 1975, participated in varsity basketball and varsity baseball. He was awarded Outstanding Male Athlete, Section 2 Leader in stolen base percentage, baseball’s most valuable player, and was a Booster Club Award Winner. Mr. Youngblood is currently involved in the Saratoga American Little League, high school sports, NY Mets semipro baseball team, and Black Student Alliance All-Star Basketball.

SARATOGA SPRINGS — Saratoga Springs native, Dean Butler, has just been awarded the prestigious honor of being inducted into the Canterbury Park Hall of Fame for Outstanding Jockey. He has been riding for 26 years. During the summer, Butler resides in Minnesota and in Tampa in the winter with his two daughters, Kendall and Kayleigh.

“Well, I grew up on North Broadway in Saratoga and went to the track every day with my dad during the summer time when he was off work and I saw the little guys that got on the horses and I was like, ‘wow!’ and I tugged on my dad’s pants one day at about 5 and said, ‘that’ll be me one day’ and he laughed,” Butler chuckled.

“When I was in high school, I got a job, I was actually working at The Hub. My sister was a bartender there and I worked in the kitchen. One day, one of my sister’s friends came in, and he asked me if I’d ever thought about being a jockey,” Butler explained.

His sister’s friend then offered to get him a job with the best trainer in the country.

“I went to the farm and learned basically from the bottom up.”

He cleaned stalls, built fences and learned all about the horse before he even rode one. At 47 years old, 5’2”, and 108 pounds, Butler has no intention of stopping any time soon.

“Eventually, there is probably something else down the line that I would get into, but right now, I’m not sure. I’m in Florida right now and I’ve got a little time before they start down here so I’ve got 2 months off which is a good break,” Butler said.

He has raced in Saratoga before, where he says he didn’t do very well.

Either way: “it was amazing. I dreamed of it all my life... It was like a check on the bucket list, as they say,” he explained.

Butler is greatly appreciative of his family and friends supporting him throughout the years.

Thursday, 27 September 2018 12:12

Local All-Star Moments

Suburban Field Hockey
Columbia at Saratoga
First Half:
Saratoga 2 v. Columbia 0
Hunter Yourch- 2 goals assisted by Molly Russell and Lindsey Frank
Second Half:
Haley Waghorn assisted by Molly Russell

Olivia Vukelic assisted by Molly Russell
Molly Russell assisted by Kylie Folts
Final Score: Saratoga 5 v. Columbia 0
Corners: Saratoga - 17 | Columbia - 4

Shots: Saratoga 27 | Columbia - 0
Saratoga Goalies: Kristen Rodecker and Emma Piccirillo -  0 saves
Columbia Goalie: Maddy Hogan - 9 saves Saratoga 7-2

Spa Catholic Volleyball
SARATOGA SPRINGS — Saratoga Central Catholic hosted Waterford Halfmoon on Wednesday, Sept. 19. Saints won 3-0.
Scores 25-10, 25-22, 25-23.
Highlights for the Saints 6-0 league and overall: Elise Browell 9 service points 16 assist; Kennedy Murphy  8 kills; MaryClare Pikus 2 kills 2 blocks; Emy Murray 6 service points; Molly O’Reilly 18 service points 6 aces.
Highlights for the Fordians 3-3 record: Nikki Lajeunesse 10 points, 5 digs; 1 assist Ashley Formosa 7 serves, 8 digs, 1 assist; Ayden Richards 8 serves, 3 digs, 15 assists.

Ballston Spa Boys Soccer
BALLSTON SPA — Guilderland visited Ballston Spa on Saturday, September 22. Griffen Leggieri scored the first goal for Ballston Spa, assisted by Jeffery Matthews. For the remaining 30 minutes of the first half, Guilderland couldn’t get a goal off. To start the second half, Guilderland’s Friquietto scored. The game was tied 1-1 at the end of the regular play. In overtime, Guilderland’s Tynan scored on a corner kick to finish the game 2-1 Guilderland.

Suburban Council Cross Country Dual Meet Results
Tuesday, September 25 — Ballston Spa/  Niskayuna/ Shaker at  Burnt Hills - Ballston Lake
Course:  Saratoga State Park | Distance:  3.05 miles

Girls Team Scores:
Ballston Spa - 27      Niskayuna - 28
BH – BL  - 28      Ballston Spa - 29
Niskayuna - 20      Shaker - 26
BH – BL - 35      Ballston Spa - 33
Shaker - 18      Shaker - 21
BH – BL  - 41     Niskayuna - 37

Individual Results:
1. F. Demars, Ballston Spa - 18:43
2. K. Higgins, Shaker - 18:49
3. L. Griffin, Shaker - 19:09
4. R. Graham, BH – BL - 19:13

5. O. Skylstad, Ballston Spa - 19:33
6. C. Kokernak, Niskayuna -19:42
7. K. Hesler, Niskayuna - 19:44
8. R. Bashant, Ballston Spa - 20:02
9. O. Miles, Shaker - 0:03
10. M. Miles, Shaker - 20:23

Boys Team Scores:
BH – BL - 18      Ballston Spa - 25
Ballston Spa - 40      Niskayuna - 34
BH – BL - 21      Ballston Spa - 22
Niskayuna - 39      Shaker - 33
BH – BL - 15      Shaker - 25

Shaker - 44      Niskayuna - 34

Individual Results:
1. E. Brennan, BH – BL - 15:43
2. T. Berg, BH – BL - 15:43
3. T. Ragone, Niskayuna - 15:50
4. M. Dolan, Niskayuna - 15:52
5. B. Guerin, Ballston Spa - 15:58
6. A. Gillooley, BH – BL - 16:22
7. N. Hunziker, BH – BL - 16:22
8. D. Metacarpa, BH – BL - 16:28
9. TJ Randall, Shaker - 16:36
10. B. Fletcher, Ballston Spa - 16:4

SARATOGA SPRINGS — In a push to strengthen healthcare education enrollment, Stat Staff Professionals, Inc. and the Saratoga Chamber of Commerce are co-sponsoring the first Healthcare Education Summit in Saratoga Spring on October 19.  The event grew out of Stat Staff’s education initiative to assist not only its own caregivers, but to enable all prospective nursing and allied health students to have access and aid to healthcare education.

“Our goal is to encourage students in our community to consider a career in healthcare, and to provide a means to connect, learn, and engage with prestigious schools in person,” said co-organizer, Victoria McCartney of Stat Staff.

“As a staffing company, we are on the frontlines of these shortages in healthcare professionals and that is why we’ve decided to take a stand, starting with our community.  Our goal is two-fold; we want to encourage career paths that will improve this shortage but also, we want to help people find their passion,” McCartney continued.

Event co-organizer and registered nurse, Kristina Rolfes BSN, RN, expanded further on the importance of increasing the number of highly-educated nurses and healthcare professionals in the field:
“Healthcare professionals serve our community by caring for our loved ones in times when it’s most needed and we need them now more than ever. We act to be an advocate for those professionals by encouraging others to pursue a career who will ultimately stand by their side in the near future. The better the healthcare system is in a community, the heathier and more stable a community will be.”

The event is being held in the Peerless Room of the Embassy Suites in Saratoga Springs from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and will feature at least a half a dozen schools and two guest speakers.  Students will have the chance to talk with prospective schools and in some cases, submit their transcripts for on-site enrollment.  There will be raffle prizes and refreshments provided for all attendees. The organizers are asking that anyone interested register at: 2018healthed.eventbrite.com (those who register in advance will receive an extra raffle ticket). Stat Staff Professionals, Inc. is a nurse-owned and nurseoperated professional staffing organization specializing in staffing registered nurses and allied health professionals.  Stat Staff believes that highly qualified, compassionate caregivers are the key to caring for the future of healthcare.

Find out more at: www.statstaffpro.com.

Thursday, 27 September 2018 11:40

For Freedoms Sign Project

SARATOGA SPRINGS — The Frances Young Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery at Skidmore College held a nonpartisan voter-registration drive and the launch of a For Freedoms public art project from 5 to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, September 25, which was also National Voter Registration Day, in conjunction with the exhibition Give a damn. Skidmore College students from the Student Government Association registered people to vote ahead of the November 6 midterm elections. For the public art project, participants were invited to share their own definition of freedom on yard signs, which was inspired by campaign signage, by completing one of following phrases:

• Freedom Of  ________.
• Freedom From ______.
• Freedom For  _______.
• Freedom To ________.

After participants articulated a vision of freedom in their own way, they were then invited to have their signs installed outside the Tang. They will stay on view as part of a public art project called For Freedoms through the November election. Those who wished to display their signs at their own homes were encouraged to share images of their signs on social media with the hashtags #ForFreedoms, #50StateInitiative as well as #TangMuseum. The public art project is a collaboration between the Tang Teaching Museum and For Freedoms, an organization founded by the artists Hank Willis Thomas and Eric Gottesman that seeks to use art to deepen public discussions of civic issues and core values, and to clarify that citizenship in American society is defined by participation, not by ideology. The For Freedoms public art exhibition is organized by Assistant Director for Engagement Tom Yoshikami and the Tang Student Advisory Council, in conjunction with For Freedoms.

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