Middle School Ice Hockey Season Well Under Way
The Garden City Wings Middle School team, better known as the Freshman Wings, is well into its
eighth season. New to the team this year will be the addition of sixth graders to the roster.
The change was initiated this past August by governing body, the High School Hockey League of
Nassau County. Last season's eighth grade players moved up to Varsity, leaving this year's
freshman team with one veteran, team Captain Tom Greco.
Freshman Wings team Captain Tom Greco fights for possession.
Though the remaining players are all rookies on the Freshman Wings, they are not in any way
new to organized hockey. Eight of the members also play on ice-hockey teams in other leagues,
while committed to the Wings. One such player is seventh grader Michael Carleo. He will be
wearing the "A", Alternate Captain, for the Wings. Michael will take the position of center, and
he brings seven years of ice-hockey experience to the team.
The Middle School Wings take the ice for another game.
On the defense will be seventh graders Tim Moynihan, Tom White, Kenny Zukas, Patrick Donahue,
and Nolan McKeown. They will be joined with sixth graders, Stephen Alonge, and
Patrick Powers. Stephen, added to the team during the final draft,
has proven to be an effective force on the ice. Each is a solid defensemen, and
as a system they are starting to jell. The Freshman Wings' two goaltenders show
much improvement since their start in October. James Morra, a seventh grader is one of the
netminders between the pipes. James is focused, quick, and precise in the net. Sharing
goaltending duties with James is John Bock, a sixth grader. John brings size and good stick
handling to his position. Both have played confidently over the last several games.
Goaltender james Morra taking a breather between plays.
The offensive group will have its work cut out for them this season if size is a factor.
Many of the Wings' forwards will be facing opponents rather sizeable since these teams have
more eighth graders. So far though, this difference in height and bulk has not deterred the
efforts of the offense. Lead scorers, Captain Tom Greco on center and wing, and Eric Diller,
an eighth grader on left wing, will set up the plays with the remaining forwards. Seventh
grader Spiros Markopoulous has speed, and strong skating and stick handling skills. Spiros
Kouroupos, also a seventh grader, is consistently improving on left wing. Sixth grader,
Christian Knoch, whose entire experience in ice-hockey is goaltending, will skate in the position
of right wing for the first time ever with the Wings. Completing the team is Frankie Giammona,
also a sixth grader and a right winger.
Tom Greco and Tim Moynihan speeding back as play goes to the defensive end where James Morra stands ready.
Head coach Richard Peck has had the task of moulding this group of individuals into a team.
Assistant coach Joe Brown, with the help of John Landers will work the defense. Goalie
coach Nick Gaudiosi rounds out the coaching staff. Rich Peck is in his second year as head coach.
He previously coached the Freshman Wings as an assistant coach for five years. When asked
about this year's group of players, he said "There are a lot of positives in this group.
Coach Brown and I see much improvement with each practice and each game, and these kids have
a great team attitude in the locker room, on the bench, and on the ice." His focus for this
freshman team is to work together, and to sharpen their skills, while challenging them to
rise to a competitive level. The Freshman Wings shows improvement with every game, and in
time will meet their coach's challenge. For more information on the Middle School
Garden City Wings, go to www.gcwings.org and click on Freshman archives.
Head Coach Rich Peck (right of center) gives his team a pep talk while Assistant Coach Joe Brown looks on.
Eric Diller on left wing completes the pass.
Right wing Christian Knoch prepares to break the oppenent's pass.