By Rob Potter
ROSCOE September 4, 2007 There are two new football teams in Sullivan County.
Earlier this month, the Rockland Youth Football Program formed two football teams and a cheerleading squad for Town of Rockland youngsters in the Livingston Manor and Roscoe Central School Districts.
The two Rockland Devilcats football teams are the Mighty Mights/Juniors, which consists of players ages 7 to 9, and the Seniors, which is for players ages 10 to 12.
Bill Hendrickson, who is the Program Coordinator for Rockland Youth Football, noted that the two neighboring school districts had a team in the youth football league in Hale Eddy in the mid-1990s.
Hendrickson is happy to see a youth football program return to the Town of Rockland.
“This is a great program,” Hendrickson said. “This is a good feeder program for the combined Manor-Roscoe varsity football team. Even with a combined team, we are still a small Class D squad. You need at least 30 kids to have a good varsity football program. Having these kids play in this youth football program means that we will have enough players for the combined varsity Manor-Roscoe team for future years.”
A host of adult volunteers are helping Hendrickson guide the two Rockland Devilcat teams. Coaches for the Mighty Mights team include Andy Bury, Heath Carlson and J.R. DeVantier. Coaches for the Senior Division squad are Dusty Bury, Roger Hathaway, Kevin Hendrickson, Frank Kuttner and Andy McCrell.
The coaches of the 25-member cheerleading squad are Donna Baker and her daughter Ashley Baker, who will begin her senior year at Roscoe Central School next week.
Both Bill Hendrickson and Donna Baker noted that despite the fact that Livingston Manor and Roscoe teams have been rivals on the Sullivan County high school athletic scene for decades, the parents, players and cheerleaders have really come together to support each other and the program.
“Just look at all these parents here supporting their kids tonight,” Bill Hendrickson said last Wednesday evening as a couple dozen parents watched the two football teams and cheerleading squad practice at the Roscoe Central School football field.
“The kids have learned that it’s OK to be from different schools,” Donna Baker said. “They know that they don’t have to be rivals. Everybody has been getting along very well and working together as a team.”
The members of the Mighty Mights/Juniors team are: Daniel Bolles, Spencer Carlson, Daniel Clancy, Joe Cubero, Khristopher DiBartolo, Dalton Diescher, Brandon Edelglass, Josh Evans, Donovan Hendrickson, Kyle Hendrickson, James Marshall, Jacob May, Paxton Mentnech, Manuel Miranda, Cody Parks, David Pautard Jr., Matt Rampe, Angelo Rivera, Michael Rivicki, Anthony Roache, Dustin Rogers, Dylan Smith, Ethan Torah, Joseph Valentin and Patrick Valentine.
The members of the Senior Division team are: Trevor Bolles, William Brochius, Dillon Dawna, Mike Dawna, Brad Dreher, Liam Fogarty, Jacob Hathaway, Frank Kutner, Logan May, Joseph McDoal, Matt McRell, Demetrious Miranda, Devon Pagen, Dolton Rankin, James Rankin, Melany Reisner, Collin Tallman, Kris Taurino, Michael Taurino, Robert Taurino, Brandon Williams and Eugene Wolcott.
The members of the Devilcat cheerleading squad are: Michelle Andrea, Mackenzie Browne, Brittany Closs, Cheyenne Closs, Samantha Cruz, Alyssa Diaz, Dallas Diescher, Alyssa Edelglass, Emily Gorr, Dakota Helms, Gem Helper, Camille Hondromarus, Ceili Horton, Lucy Kunz, Victoria Rose Madera, Kylea May, Rebecca McAdams, Megan McMichael, Reyana Miranda, Maria Muller, Amanda Rampe, Christina Rodriguez, Saige Roberts, Brooke Rogers, Key Aleace Sherwood, and Kassandra Will.
Hendrickson has talked with coaches of youth football teams in the Fallsburg, Hancock and Sullivan West school districts about playing scrimmages or games this autumn. Whether or not the Rockland Devilcats play those teams, they have a few games versus the Liberty Youth Football Program teams already penciled in on their schedule.
The first of those Liberty vs. Rockland Devilcats games is slated for 9 a.m. on Saturday, September 8 at Liberty. The teams will also play two night games this fall. On Friday, Sept. 21, the squads will meet at halftime at a Livingston Manor/Roscoe Devilcats varsity football game versus Eldred at Roscoe Central School. On Friday, October 12, the Liberty and Rockland youth gridiron teams will play a game at Liberty Central School.
The Liberty and Rockland squads also plan to square off at 9 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 22 in Livingston Manor and at 9 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 13 in Liberty.
The Rockland Devilcats football and cheerleading teams will wrap up their 2007 season on Wednesday, Oct. 17 at the Roscoe Firemen’s Park. On that evening, the players and cheerleaders will turn in their uniforms and enjoy a recognition ceremony and chicken barbeque dinner with their coaches and family members.
While the Rockland football program recently held a fundraiser, Bill Hendrickson noted that the program can still use financial support. Any local business or individual who would like to make a donation to the Rockland Youth Football program is asked to please call Hendrickson at (607) 498-5329.