Tag Archives: Staples High School sports

Roundup: Winter Sports, Papal Prayer, Youth Survey, More


Staples High School’s winter sports season moved a step closer to a (long-delayed) reality yesterday.

The state Department of Public Health told the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference — the organizing body for high school sports — that low- and moderate-risk sports (basketball, ice And fnahockey, indoor track, swimming and gymnastics) can begin practicing a week from today (January 19).

The CIAC will meet Thursday to approve the plan. The first games could be played February 1, though that date may be pushed back.

Safety protocols include masks at all times, including competition, social distancing on the sidelines, and perhaps no spectators other than parents. There can be no multi-team indoor track meets.

High-risk sports (wrestling and cheer) will be allowed only small-group practices, with no competitions.

Still, for winter athletes and coaches — whose seasons were canceled abruptly last March, when COVID first struck — the fact that abbreviated seasons may begin soon was welcome news.


Janine Scotti writes:

I was almost home yesterday morning, my heart still heavy from the events of the last week, when I saw what appeared to be a bag’s worth of garbage strewn along Riverside Avenue.

I knew that if I had called Public Works, they could not arrive before some of the trash ended up in the Saugatuck River. With no other option, and inspired by the images of Congressman Andy Kim on his hands and knees cleaning the floor of the Capitol, I hurried home to grab gloves and a trash bag.

When I returned, a passerby walking a beautiful golden retriever said the garbage had probably fallen from a vehicle on its way to the dump.

As I loaded the mess into the bag I had brought, I realized it had been collected from the nearby church. Amid the papers were handfuls of small cut-out hearts.  As a collector of hearts of all shapes and sizes, I smile as I continued my work.

As I was getting ready to head home, I found one last item: a 3 x 3 laminated card. On the front was an image of Pope John XXIII. On the back, was this prayer:

I am certain it was no accident that the litter caught my attention yesterday, as a way for me to find this message and share it.

After this tragic week in our democracy, this unexpected find gave me the reassurance I was looking for. I hope that no matter what your political party or faith, it also brings you comfort and hope, today and in the future.


Bullying. Lack of non-car transportation. Lack of affordable activities. Vaping, drinking and drugs. Apathy. Gender issues.

Those are some of the things Westport youngsters deal with.

How important are they to kids, and adults? The Westport Youth Commission wants to know.

They’ve developed a needs survey, broken down into elementary, middle, high school and post-high school/college ages. Anyone can take it; you can identify yourself as a student, parent with kids in schools, adult without students in schools, or a professional working with Westport youth.

The goal is to understand what the community wants, to better cater to those needs. Click here for the survey.


A multiracial, intergenerational cat of more than 60 performers — including Westporters — celebrates Martin Luther King Day every year, at Bridgeport’s Klein Auditorium.

COVID changed those plans. This year’s event next Monday (January 18, 2 p.m.) is virtual

Connect-Us — the non-profit suburban and urban partnership that provides after-school opportunities for Bridgeport youth, which sponsors the celebration, notes:

“Dr. King had a dream that inspired the world to create more harmonious, developmental, and humane communities, cities, and countries.” Each year, the Connect-Us community creates performances and writes letters to Dr. King letting him know what their dreams are — or why they don’t have dreams.

This year’s show is called “Bridgeport Has a Dream: Building Bridges Across Fairfield County.” It will be streamed for free on Facebook and the Connect-Us website. It will also be available on those platforms after the event.


And finally … today is National Kiss a Ginger Day. Unfortunately the world’s most famous ginger — Baker — died in 2019.

Staples Wins Prestigious Athletic Cup

Most high schools across the country pay attention to some combination of academics, arts, athletics and activities. It’s tough to do all 4 well.

Staples High School is not “most high schools.”

All 4 of those “A’s” get equal attention, from administrators, staff, parents and (of course) students.

“06880” often highlights Staples’ academics, arts and activities. To the surprise of many, I steer clear of (most) athletics. There’s a good reason: sports gets plenty of newspaper and online coverage elsewhere.*

(Though here’s a plug for my boys soccer team. If you see them, congratulate them on a fantastic run during the state tournament. Those boys became men, and I am intensely proud of them.)

The Staples High School boys soccer team celebrates a state tournament victory in South Windsor. (Photo/Armelle Daniels)

The Staples High School boys soccer team celebrates a state tournament victory in South Windsor. (Photo/Armelle Daniels)

But here’s great news about Staples’ entire athletic program. For the 20th time since 1988, the school has received the Michaels Cup. It’s awarded by the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference for outstanding achievement in 7 areas: sportsmanship, participation, scholarship, personnel, equity, chemical-free initiatives and athletic success.

Staples athletic director Marty Lisevick — who compiled data upon which the Michaels Cup was awarded — says it highlights “not only our coaching staff, but the character education they develop with kids, win, lose or draw.”

block-s-officialHe cites the community service undertaken by many Staples teams. The football squad leads a school-wide breast cancer awareness campaign, for example; the boys soccer team works with the Farmers’ Market to shop, cook and serve meals at the Gillespie Center.

Lisevick also does leadership training with captains, including a conference at NYU.

“Our kids are successful athletically,” Lisevick notes. “But they’re also successful academically. They go above and beyond wins and losses. We try to develop people who will be successful later in whatever they do.”

Staples was honored last night, at a banquet in Southington.

This morning it’s back to work: on the athletic fields, in the classroom, and in all the activities that make up a full, well-rounded life.

One exception: Check out yesterday’s story on the Staples field hockey team. Go Wreckers!

Thanks, But No Thanks

Stamford Advocate sportswriter Dave Ruden has a great nose for good stories.  His “Overtime” blog highlights high school sports — and as often as he can, he features good news.

Last weekend he gave a shout-out to Staples — coincidentally, his alma mater.  Dave wrote that he’d just received an email from a Wrecker athlete, following his blog post about the young man.  It was a few simple lines —  “thanks for the nice writeup” — but because that’s so rare these days, Dave thought it was worth a mention.

Within hours, he took the blog post down.

Turns out the athlete received so much grief from his teammates and friends about his polite gesture, he asked Dave to remove the story.

Like Dave Ruden, I’m usually a huge advocate of today’s teenagers.

But also like Dave, all I can do this morning is shake my head.