Fort Plain Faculty/Staff Hoops set for Mar. 9

Harry Hoag School Gym will host the 2018 Faculty/Staff Basketball game on Friday, Mar. 9.

Festivities begin at 5 p.m. when students in grades 4-6 take the court for biddy basketball.  At 6 p.m., eight teams made up of a teacher, a junior or senior, and a sixth grader take the court for a skills challenge. The teams race to hit a free throw, a three-pointer, and a half-court shot. The main event, a coed faculty/staff basketball game, tips off at 7 p.m.

The annual event will pit Team Crisman against Team Larrabee. The game promises to be exciting and fun. Everyone is invited to come and cheer on their favorite teachers and school employees.

Admission is $2 for adults, $1 for students in grades 7-12, and free for students PK-6. All students must be accompanied by an adult. There will be a full concession stand.

Half-time of the adult game will feature a half-court shooting challenge. One dollar buys a chance to hit a half-court shot to win five dollars. Hit two shots and win an iTune card.

All proceeds go to the PTA, which underwrites educational and extracurricular activities not funded in the school budget.

Lauri Broady honored as Friend to Education

Woman in black dress wearing a white corsage standing next to a man in a dark suit.
Mrs. Broady and Fort Plain Superintendent Dr. David Ziskin share a happy moment at a CASDA luncheon where Mrs. Broady received the association’s Friend of Education award.

On Feb. 16, Fort Plain CSD’s Lauri Broady was honored with the Capital Area School Development Association (CASDA) Friends of Education Award.

CASDA presents this award to recognize the selfless contributions of individuals who dedicate themselves to serving students and the school community.

Although Mrs. Broady is the school’s food service manager, she is much more.

Many people do not realize that she serves both Fort Plain and Canajoharie. She works together with the cafeteria staffs to ensure students receive appetizing and highly nutritional meals. To make certain that all students had access to those meals, so Mrs. Broady led successful applications to the USDA Community Eligibility Program. Under this grant, all students in both districts receive a free nutritious breakfast and lunch each school day. Her shared responsibilities extend beyond the cafeteria. She co-directs plays and musicals for Canajoharie-Fort Plain Drama Club and coordinates the Canajoharie-Fort Plain Health and Wellness Fair.

Her efforts don’t stop there.

In Fort Plain, she teaches four Talented and Gifted groups. She is the advisor for the Harry Hoag student council and produces the district newsletter that runs in the Pennysaver.

Mrs. Broady is truly a Friend of Education.

Jr/Sr High School Faculty/Staff “Go Red”

22 smiling adults wearing articles of red clothing standing on the stairs inside the schoolOn Feb. 2, faculty and staff at the Jr/Sr High School wore red to school in support of the American Heart Association’s annual “God Red for Women” campaign.

The campaign raises funds and awareness in the fight against women’s heart disease.  Funds raised by “Go Red For Women” activities support research into women’s heart health. They turn that science into materials and tools that healthcare providers and decision- makers can use to help women. The American Heart Association provides the most up-to-date strategies and treatments tailored to a woman’s individual risk. Toolkits, pocket versions of guidelines for women, special reports, and continuing medical education give healthcare providers the means to ensure that women are afforded the best and most current information and services.

Fort Plain Boys Bowling wins WAC Title

Congratulations to the Fort Plain boys varsity bowling team that won the Western Athletic Conference league championship at Spare Time Lanes in Schenectady on Jan. 31.

The team of Brady Fureno, Zach Young, Damien Young, Anthony Paradiso, Jacob Hazlett, and Taylor Gifford combined to knock down 2,944 total pins to top second-place Middleburgh (2,854 total pins).

Fureno led the way with a 224-235-221 series for 680 total pins. Zach Young rolled a 157-157-196, Damien Young had a 180-193-206, Paradiso added a 206-217-199, and Hazlett had a 182-189-182.

The team now moves on to the Section II tournament at Boulevard Bowl in Schenectady on Feb. 8.

Jr./Sr. High School Students of the Month – January 2018

Congratulations to January’s students of the month for the Jr./Sr. High School (nominator in parentheses)!
  • Grade 12 – Emily Marsh (Mrs. Jarabek)
  • Grade 11 – Mackenzie Wintermute (Mr. Jarabek)
  • Grade 10 – Franklyn TenEyck (Mrs. Cooley and Mrs. Jarabek)
  • Grade 9 – Rachel Zuppardi (Mrs. Jarabek)
  • Grade 8 – Noah Norton (Mrs. Wilder and Mrs. Summerfield)
  • Grade 7 – Alex Rivkowich (Dr. Pombrio)

Legendary Fort Plain baseball coach wins national Coach of the Year honor

Legendary Fort Plain baseball coach Craig Phillips was named a 2017 National Coach of the Year by the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) Coaches Association last week.

Philips is the only baseball coach and one of just 23 high school coaches from across the country to be selected for the honor that the NFHS has awarded since 1982.

“To be honored with this award from our small school in upstate New York, I am just extremely honored. I hope I have made a difference, but most of all I am so proud that we have such great kids and such a great school and community that support the program and me,” said Phillips. “To be honored in this way is a great, great honor.”

“Coach Phillips’ selection as National Coach of the Year is a tremendous honor. It is also well-deserved,” Fort Plain Superintendent of Schools David Ziskin said. “Craig’s love of the game and his players has defined his career. He has made a unique and indelible imprint on the athletes he has coached, Fort Plain and on high school athletics in New York State.”

“I have known Craig for a very long time and seen him in action for a very long time and this kind of award recognizes not only the success of his teams, but also overcoming adversity,” Fort Plain Athletics Director Charlie Karker said. “This award recognizes the time, effort, and care that he has given to Fort Plain – not just the school or the team – all of Fort Plain.”

Phillips enters his 45th season this spring with more than 750 career wins – the most wins in the history of New York State high school baseball – and that success hasn’t waned over the last few years either.

Over the past two seasons, the Fort Plain baseball team was a combined 37-6, won the 2016 Class D New York State Public High School Athletic Association (NYSPHSAA) championship and reached the Section II final last year.

Phillips called the 2016 state title “improbable” at the time. The then-No. 3 seeded Hilltoppers beat top-seeded Fort Ann in eight innings, 2-1, in the Section II title game. Fort Plain then went on to beat Genesee Valley, 11-0, in the state semifinal and West Canada Valley in the state championship game, 11-6.

Always the coach, Philips said of his upcoming 2017 team, “We don’t have any seniors this year, but I expect us to still be pretty good.”

Overall, the Hilltoppers have won 24 league championships, 10 Section II titles and a pair of state championships during Philips’ tenure. The first sectional title was in 1981 and the first state crown came in 2007 in Class C. Including the 2016 run, Fort Plain has played in five NYSPHSAA state tournaments.

Even though Phillips tends to deflect his own accomplishments, he was named the NYSPHSAA Coach of the Year in both 2007 and 2016. He has served on the Section II baseball committee for 35 consecutive years and was inducted into the American Baseball Coaches Association Hall of Fame in 2011. He was inducted into the Capital Region Baseball Hall of Fame in 2012.

“There is something so intriguing about the game of baseball. Every year, there is always a restart of the season. It is always fresh and new. Since we are a small district, we always have new players that are question marks, but they have to play. We are lucky enough that they respond to myself and my other coaches,” Philips said. “I have to thank all of my assistant coaches from over the years. I started out alone, but without them, in this day and age, there is no way we would be as successful without them. I also want to thank the community for supporting our program and the school for giving us, and maintaining, such a gorgeous facility that we get to use.”

Phillips has had dozens of league, section, and state all-stars on his rosters over the years including 2016 New York State Sportswriters Association Class D Player of the Year, and 2017 First-Team All-State selection, Drew Fureno. Former players have also followed in the coach’s footsteps into the dugout. Former Hilltopper Jabin Weaver was named the head baseball coach at Hudson Valley Community College this past fall.

“I have coached so many great kids from great families, but I have never coached a grandson yet,” Philips joked as he rattled off name after name he has put on roster cards over the years. “We have a saying here in Fort Plain, ‘tradition never graduates.’ I know I am a tough guy to play for, but the way that the players, school, and community have rallied around baseball they have made that saying remain true for many years and it will remain true for many more.”