This is the second boys’ soccer team to be inducted in the Wall of Fame as a “team of distinction,” joining the 1968 team with this high honor. “JT’s Raiders” as they called themselves in the 1975 yearbook, were led by Coach John Thomas, compiled an overall season record of 18 wins – 1 loss. Co-captains Tom Ketterer and Jim Durr, led the team to the 1st Section VI overall championship ever, by beating Kenmore West 2-1, solidifying the Bulldogs claim the rank of #1 for WNY. Despite Section VI not being able to participate in the New York State championships in 1974, sports writers still listed Hamburg as the overall NYS ranking of #4 in all of State. The team had great balance both offensively and protecting the goal, as the Bulldogs outscored their opponents by a dominating 68 goals for while allowing only 18 goals against. Remarkably, remembered Co-captain Ketterer, in no less than 9 games during the season, the purple and white scored the game’s first goal within one minute from the start of the game!
The offense was led by Bob Minkel and Billy Young while the defense was defended by goalie Jim Durr, Carl Villarini, Todd Rice, Helmuth Wolf, and Tom Ketterer. Eight members of the championship team received post season honors. Named to the ECIC All-Start Team: 1st team: Jim Durr, Billy Young, Tom Ketterer, Carl Villarini, and Bob Minkel. 2nd team: Helmuth Wolf, Todd Rice, Alex Lopez. Tom Ketterer also received All-WNY, All New York State, and regional All-American honors. Bob Minkel also received All-WNY honors. Five players from this team went on to play soccer in college
Hamburg Boys soccer continued to dominate Section VI for many more years, but none achieved the success that the 1974 did in gaining the rank of #1 at the end of year in Western New York.
Head Coach: Richard Van Valkenburgh
Co-Captains: Dave Klemenich and John Pritchard
Complied an 8-1 record during the ’76 season, ranked Top 10 in WNY and 25th in New York State. 10 Players were named Division II All-Star Team: 4-Offense, 5-Defense, 1 Special Teams. Mark Collins and Perry Dix selected as All-Western New York- Buffalo News. Perry Dix set Division II record by blocking 6 punts during the 1976 season. Outscored their opponents 156 points (17.3) to 89 points (9.8).
THE BEAUTIFUL GAME — A DREAM SEASON Those in the know describe soccer as “the beautiful game” and during the 1992 soccer season a group of beautiful young ladies played the beautiful game beautifully for a whole season. To be competitive in Section VI was always a goal, but to advance beyond that, to the NYS playoffs, was a dream. No Section VI, Class A, girls soccer team had ever taken the giant step to “The States.” This ’92 team was made up of six seniors and a bevy of underclassmen. From day one, co-captains, Heather Williams and Jolie Mandell, took the reins of leadership. The other seniors, Molly Sheehan, Chrissy Metzger, Jennifer Funke and Robin Barris bought into the process. The rest of the team also “bought in”. They had no choice, as the positive attitude passed on by the upperclassmen became contagious. As the season progressed it was easy to observe a good team chemistry and team trust being built. Practices had purpose and it showed in games. If there was an individual hero in a game it was because of a team effort. Being the runner up in Division I did not deter the Bulldogs. While Williamsville North took the Division title, they lost to Lockport while the Bulldogs were besting Orchard Park. That set up the Section VI Finals between Hamburg and Lockport. In the finals, it was the “never give up” Bulldog attitude which prevailed. The Hamburg Bulldogs were now headed for uncharted territory. Hornell High School hosted the States and it was the first time the Bulldogs played on an artificial turf field. The Bulldogs were pitted against Webster, Section V Champs. More Bulldog heroics! Being outplayed throughout the game, Hamburg kept Webster off the scoreboard. Goalie, Jennifer Funke, made some outstanding saves during regulation. Overtimes proved fruitless by both teams and it came down to penalty kicks for a berth in the Semi Finals. Forward, Lyneve Lauria, stepped into goal for the Bulldogs PK session and made a key save, while freshman, Mary Watts, tied the contest with a well-placed shot. That set up the winner by another freshman, Kate Dziedzic. She calmly placed a neat shot passed the Webster Goalie and the Bulldogs were off to the Semi’s.
Shenendehowa was a totally different story. National polls had them ranked #10 in the country and the school was more than twice the size of Hamburg. A “David and Goliath” ending was not in the works and a “Dream Season” came to an end. Coach John Thomas had the highest praise for the play and conduct of his payers and felt that this team was not the most talented, but it was the blend of players and the way they played that created the success. The Hamburg ladies were awarded the state playoffs “Sportsmanship Trophy” for their positive attitude. Thomas stated, “I would invite every Hamburg athlete to have an attitude that our kids have. The more they overcame odds the more they believed they could overcome anything. They are a bunch of kids playing for each other. If someone faltered, someone else would step up and it would be someone different each time. Co-Captains Williams and Mandell came together and summarized the season this way. “The team worked on pride, determination and played for the love of the game. We worked together like a unit, a family. We were “All In.” We played through physical and emotional challenges and persevered through it all to be the best team we could be.” “Truly a “Dream Season.”
Front Row: Moira Sheehan, Laurie Giumento, Christine Metzger, Heather Williams (Co-Captain), Jolie Mandell (Co-Captain), Robyn Barris, Nicole Abramo, Maggie Schreier, Jennifer Funke. Second Row: Amy Tomaszewski, Melissa Reinagel, Kristen Kummer, Chun Yu Liu, Lyneve Lauria, Jennifer Stockmeyer, Jennifer Errington, Brooke Catarella Back Row: Tara Manteghi, Sandra Gullo, Laura Sheehan, Mary Watts, Kate Dziedzic, Coach John Thomas
The Hamburg Boy’s Golf teams dominated Western New York for twelve consecutive years, coached by Hamburg Wall of Famer, Jim Henneberg. In the twelve-year stretch the Bulldogs won or shared 12 consecutive division championships, and only losing 3 matches, which is an astounding 97% winning percentage! Several team records were made and broken during the streak, including the team scoring- individual match total team scoring of +4 over par for 72 holes, and the individual match school record, set by Kris Cappuzzo, of -3 under for 12 holes. This school record along with Cappuzzo winning the NYS golf champion, helped launch his induction into the Hamburg Wall of Fame in 2012. In total, there were 50 boys who were members of these twelve teams, and many of them have gone on to careers in the golfing industry. The talent level was so deep that some of the most difficult competitions came in the playoffs for starting positions among the team! That dilemma was solved by Coach Henneberg, who scheduled two opponents on the same day and devised a split squad strategy, which allowed more players to compete without sacrificing a drop in the quality of play. Many team members remain friends and look forward to teeing it up with former teammates. Golf remains one of the “lifetime sports” which can be played for decades after graduation, combining a blend of mental and physical ability, and is one of the few sports which requires a competitor to self-enforce the rules. Our Hamburg golfers displayed this high level of integrity both on and off the course.
Hamburg Boy’s Golf Teams 1988-1999 Coach: James Henneberg
Team Members: Brian Andrea Luke MacDonald Jason Ansuini Brian McElwain Rob Black Rob McElwain Adam Boland Colin Maher Jon Boland Mike Measer Pat Bowman Derek Nicholas Kris Cappuzzo Mike Pallotta Joe Centrich Paul Peccia Tim Claret’ Jason Polisoto Mike Cohoon Jeff Rapini Chad Collins Mike Rapini Kevin Devine Jason Ruh Dave Dunn Craig Saundres Kevin Edson Andy Sheffield Brad Fischer Mark Szarowicz Mike Frydrych Mike Szarowicz Ryan Gannon Chris Thuman Jason Geiger Doug Wagner Joe Gervase Brad Weaver PJ Hoak Jacob Werner Chad Hoisek Dave Will Todd Hoisek Tim Will Jim Jordan Gene Williams Joel Kenyon Andy Zemrac Jeff Kummer Bill Zoeller
This year’s Team of Distinction is Hamburg High School’s 1962, 1963 and 1964 Boy’s Cross Country Teams. These teams were undefeated Division I Champions over three autumn seasons, compiling an impressive dual meet log of 32-0. This was a new record for the Erie County Interscholastic Conference founded in 1954-1955. These ECIC Championships were Hamburg’s 5th, 6th and 7th titles since 1954. The cross country teams during these years faced great competition at the start of their season. Strong competition in the Buffalo State Invitational brought teams from Section V, Section VI and beyond. The 1962 team finished in 2nd Place, 2 points behind the winning team. “Best showing ever out of 33 teams,” Coach Foster stated. The 1963 squad duplicated the 2nd Place finish against 31 teams. In 1964 the entries increased to 40 teams with Hamburg finishing in 2nd Place again. Definitely a signal of things to come. After the ECIC dual meet season ended, the ECIC Divisional Meets were held at Chestnut Ridge Park at the Casino. The championship races were run on a challenging course starting downhill into the meadow, running uphill to the toboggan chutes, along the roadway at the Casino to Benning Loop. Runners retraced the route back to the finish line. In Division I, “The 1962 Team ran in a “pack” to finish with a :12 second spread between runners 1-5 … Excellent work!” was Coach Foster’s reply after winning the championship. Ralph Kelly and Ray Sprickman made the ECIC All-Star Team to lead the squad. The 1963 Team also captured the Division I Championship, but encountered hazards! The prolonged, exceptionally dry autumn left training surfaces hard as rock causing more than eight runners to suffer leg, shin, ankle and broken bone injuries. ‘The squad achieved greatly because of team depth,” stated Foster. Thomas Hoffman, team captain, led this tenacious team while gaining ECIC All-Star status. The teams grew in size, talent and experience. The 1964 Team rolled onward to capture the ECIC 1962 Division I Championship for a third consecutive year, conquering teams, race courses and titles. The Bulldog’s placed Chris Hart, Edd Webster and Bruce Cook on the ECIC All-Star Team.
Foster’s teams grew in size. The 1959 Team had 27 runners. The 1962, 1963 and 1964 teams had 33, 47 and 49 runners respectively. This makes a total of 129 runners for Foster’s last three seasons.
Sectional Championships were the gold standard. Since 1950 to 1959 Hamburg had won 8 Sectional Championships. The 1962 Team lost a pre-season scrimmage to Kenmore East, defending Class MA Champion. The Hamburg harriers returned the favor and defeated Kenmore at Chestnut Ridge to capture Hamburg’s first Class AAA Championship. Leg, ankle, shin and bone injuries prevented the 1963 Harriers from defending yet finished in 3rd Place. The 1964 Bulldogs returned with great desire and won the Class AAA Championship, 10th Hamburg Sectional title and 5th Place at the State Meet in Baldwinsville, NY. “Best team exceeding 1962 Team, Best team in WNY, a top team in New York State.” – J. Foster