Challenges of Starting a New School Team


Courtesy of Catherine Taubner

Sophomore Catherine Taubner takes to the green as she practices her swing.

Nic Franchini, Staff Reporter, Sophomore

Three new teams were added to the Pelham Memorial High School athletic program this year. A winter sports addition was a freshman basketball team coached by varsity soccer assistant coach Tony Caccuri. A boys swim team joined the roster of sports, and for the spring season, the girls got their own golf team coached by Ms. April Clapp. But starting a new team isn’t easy. It takes drive, persistence and the stamina to keep the team going.

To start a new team, students must make a proposal to the Board of Education. Seniors Kiera Mallinson and Lauren Hade, junior Sara Veteri, and sophomore Catherine Taubner were the proponents of the new girls golf team.

”Kiera, Lauren, Sara Veteri, and Catherine spearheaded the operation,” said Ms. Clapp. “I was excited about helping to start something new and enlightening for the girls.”

The girls golf team’s season just started and it began with a bang. In their first match, they beat Edgemont, powered by good performances from Kiera Mallinson, Sara Veteri, Catie Woods, and Caroline Veteri.

Coach Clapp said, “Winning the first match was awesome, and I was proud to be part of the historic moment.”

The girls have most of their season in front of them and hope to excel.

Sophomores Lance Brady and Dylan Nordstrom were instrumental in the formation of the boys swim team. Interest grew incrementally, and the roster of boys grew. The fledgeling team was spurred on by its initial success, eventually ending the season with a record of 6-4 and advancing to the Section I finals. When a team takes off right out of the gate, it is a reasonable guess that they will continue to attract new members even as veterans like senior Mason Brady get ready to graduate.

The freshman boys basketball team was another new team to Pelham sports, finishing its first season over the winter. While some wondered why PMHS needed a whole new basketball team, parents and players argued that a level of competition above recreational basketball for freshmen was necessary. Many freshmen wanted to play for the school but did not make the JV basketball team.

Coach Caccuri had a great time coaching this new, young team this season and is excited to begin next season.

Though the team had limited success this year, they hope to continue on to next year. That will only happen if there are enough players to fill the roster.

This is true for each of the newest Pelham athletic teams: their continuation depends on whether they can attract adequate numbers to maintain a team. In any case, the tenacity of these newest additions to the Pelican roster is to be admired.