The Williamsville Central School district approved a $22 million-dollar capital improvement project to upgrade the athletic fields at it’s three high schools. A complete overhaul of the football fields and baseball diamonds are being reconstructed complete with turf and lights. Williamsville North was the first school to put shovels in the ground. On Friday, the Spartans will host Niagara Wheatfield in the first varsity football game at the new field.
School officials and local dignitaries will be on hand for a ceremonial ribbon cutting prior to the Falcons and Spartans 7pm kick-off. Williamsville East and South will begin construction at their fields next spring.
I’ve been to the Williamsville North Athletic Complex and it is a game changer. It’s one of the reasons my wife and I decided to move into the area. Last week the JV football and girls varsity field hockey teams played and won on the new turf.
“Everybody has been talking about the new field. We are getting positive feedback” North’s Athletic Director Steve Serenczy said “It’s the biggest project since I’ve been here. We have great kids here and they are all very excited to be a part of this.” Serenczy added that some cosmetic work was still being completed in preparation of Friday night’s game. It’s homecoming week as well.
“Friday will be a very exciting day” said senior Andrew Hwang. “From what I hear, everyone is very excited for the game. Especially with it being the opener and homecoming.” I asked the three year starter his thoughts on the old field. “I think I’ll just miss the fact that it’s the field I’ve played on ever since I started playing football. The new field is gorgeous though and we are really looking forward to playing on it.”
There won’t be a dedication or naming of the field after a previous coach or administrator. “Williamsville doesn’t do that like other schools” said Serenczy.
Coach Mike Mammoliti has been at the school for 32 years. “I’ve had a lot of special moments here during my career. Taking the new field, under the lights, it’s going to be special.” Mammoiti has been head coach for the past 16 seasons and is also the strength and conditioning coach.
“We also upgraded the weight room two years ago. We put $185,000 into it and it’s for everybody here. Not just the football team” Coach Mammo said.
Mammoliti is just the 3rd head coach in North’s history. The first, Lou Martini and then Jim Calandra were big influences on Mammoliti. As well as Jack Hartman who passed away in 2010. He was not sure if Calandra or Martini would be able to attend Friday but Mammoloti will be thinking about all of them.
“I’m going to have goose bumps, that’s for sure” coach Mammo said. “Our coaches have done a great job preparing us for the game, staying focused” Hwang said.
Niagara Wheatfield lost the first two games. They need to get RB KJ Welch going and QB Matt Mixon some protection if they are going to turn the season around.
For North, they are currently undefeated after winning their first two games on the road. In week one they took down Jamestown and then last Saturday Kenmore West. They have a great running game with Jason’s twin brother Andrew and a very stingy defense.
Friday can’t come soon enough.
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