NUTLEY, NJ — Nutley High School held a National Signing Day ceremony for 10 student-athletes who announced their college choices.
The ceremony took place at NHS on Feb. 12, attended by family members, friends, coaches and administrators.
The following NHS student-athletes were honored:
- Samantha Gabriele, soccer, Montclair State University
- Isabella Fogle, softball, Muhlenberg College
- Jamell Quiles, softball, Bloomfield College
- Aislin Scarpelli, rowing, Rutgers University
- Johnny Matrona, lacrosse, Piedmont College
- Dominic Contella, lacrosse, Susquehanna University
- Kevin Hogan, baseball, Felician University
- Trevor Santos, baseball, Manhattan College
- Peter Haverick, wrestling, Davis & Elkins College
- Abigail Scheidel, basketball, Muhlenberg College
Quiles transferred to NHS from Bloomfield HS this year.
A few student-athletes expressed the reasons for their college decision and their memories of competing for NHS.
“Felician was the right fit for me. It’s where I felt most wanted. The coaches there seem genuine and they know what it’s like to win. That’s who I am’ Felician is getting someone who doesn’t know what losing is. Academically, Felician has a very good criminal justice program. I want to be a cop when I’m older so that’s what I will be majoring in. In terms of my favorite memory, I’d say (it was ) my walk-off grand slam in states last year. I cut my finger the night before and wasn’t sure I’d be ready to play. However, I wrapped up my finger and texted (coach) Harb, “Im gonna help us win a baseball game today” And surely, I did. I have never ‘bat-flipped’ a home run before that. As soon as it left the bat, I launched it.
“This spring we are getting underestimated and I look forward to shocking people. I want to bring this school a GNT title with the odds stacked against us. Over the years there has been a lot of unfinished business. Trevor Santos and I will be sure to put an end to that.”
“I plan on going to veterinary school after college and Rutgers has an amazing acceptance rate for graduates getting into vet school, which is even harder to get accepted to than medical school. They also have a lot of opportunities for students who want to really be hands-on in their subject of choice and I really liked the campus as well as the new organization of the school. They also have a lot of research opportunities with schools in the Big 10 program which allows for me to take advantage of the resources of other schools as well.
As for the athletics, Rutger Women’s Rowing has been completely revamped over the last few years and I really like the direction they’re going in. Just hearing Coach Price speak about his team and what they’re doing is so motivating. If I’m going to do such a challenging and time-consuming sport in college, I should do it with a leader who motivates me the way this team already has.
“There is so much I have experienced at Nutley High School as a student-athlete, especially since we spend so much time at the boathouse. If I’m being honest I think I spend more time with my team than my actual blood family during the time between March and May (although both my father and my brother are members of the team, coaching and rowing respectively). They really do become a second family to you. I think some of my favorite memories have been from when I’ve gone to the Stotesbury Cup or Stotes, as we like to call it, and we race and live together for a couple of days. I’ve always felt closest to my teammates then and it’s a really good bonding experience for everyone who goes. As for my plan for the 2020 season? I would love to medal in States and make it to semifinals for Stotes, and of course, win the cup for the Passiac River Sprints.”
“I was looking for a small school with a good criminal Justice program. I met Coach Boland and many other coaches at a wrestling recruiting showcase last summer. After two visits to Davis and Elkins, I had a chance to meet the team and sit in on a criminal justice class. I also like that half the students are athletes and have the same mentality as me. I knew it was a great fit. It is a new Division II wrestling program and the coach and many of my future teammates are from New Jersey.
“My favorite memory of being at Nutley High School is competing with longtime friends. We have created a brotherhood. I love how we always support each other through our journey on and off the mat.”
“Academically, Bloomfield is a great fit for me. It has my major, which is nursing, and is known to have one of the top nursing programs around. Athletically, I get along with the team. I’ve known the coach for years. Phil Delgado helped me become the athlete, and more importantly, the young lady I have formed into today.
“I’m new here at Nutley High, but my favorite memory was beating Matawan last season. We were down late in the game and Brianna Cruz hit a gram slam, wrapped around the foul pole to tie it up. This season, I hope to win the section, have fun and have a winning record. I can’t wait for the season.”
“There were several things that attracted me to Muhlenberg College. When I visited, I was immediately drawn to the beauty of the campus. As I went on a tour everyone was very friendly, welcoming, and seemed to know each other. At Muhlenberg, I also like that there is a small student- to-professor ratio, as it will give me an opportunity to really get to know my professors. I also knew I always wanted to go away to school but be close enough to come home, if needed. In the fall, I will start Muhlenberg, undecided but am leaning towards business with my main interest being in sports management.
At Muhlenberg, I had the opportunity to spend the day with the softball team. This allowed me to meet the coach and all the players on the team. They immediately made me feel welcomed and comfortable. The coach was very open and honest about her expectations for the team and where I would fit in. After spending the day with them I knew this was the softball program I wanted to be part of.
“My fondest memories of playing softball at Nutley High School are the bonds I have made with my teammates and our yearly trips to Disney. We spend a great deal of time together bonding and really getting to know each other. We are always focused on working as a team-for the best of the team.
“My goal for my last season is to be an example for the younger players. I want them to know that they can achieve anything they put their minds to, with hard work, determination and the mindset of never giving up on your dreams. “
“Some academic things that stood out to me about Muhlenberg was the high academic programs that are offered there. I am also interested in majoring in communications and Muhlenberg was the only school that I looked at that had the distinct major offered. During my college search, my academics definitely came first. Athletic-wise, Muhlenberg women’s basketball has been a winning program under Coach Ron so I think being a part of that will be really cool. I was also able to catch a game this year and I see myself fitting in really well with the team and program.
“Nutley Basketball has given me so many memories and I am so grateful that I got the opportunity to play with so many amazing and supporting girls. My first memory was my first game against Newark Academy, just because I remember being so nervous on the bus ride there. My favorite memory would be scoring my 1,000th point, though. Being mobbed on the court by teammates is a feeling that I will never forget. My team, coaches, and family made it a real memorable and fun night. I am going to miss them all so much next year.”
The thing I love about Manhattan most is what they have to offer for their business program. When my coach told me 7/8 athletes who attend Manhattan already have jobs before graduating, (it) immediately grabbed my interest. Athletically, playing against Division 1 teams will be my biggest… yet potentially in my opinion, the competition I will be facing will be my most thrilling baseball-related experience. Over the past decade Manhattan has been battling against mainly Quinnipiac for taking first in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) while finishing third last year. In addition, I have been blessed to be given the opportunity to play both positions, outfield and pitching on the baseball team.
“My first huge memory was my freshman year in the county quarterfinals (Greater Newark Tournament). Two nights prior, I asked the NHS baseball group chat if we will have the day before the big game. One of the seniors, Jake Ifverson, being his sarcastic self replied to me, ‘No, Trevor, we will be going to the zoo.’ The next day, the team was prepping and practicing, only I haven’t attended the practice because I thought we were going on a field trip to the zoo. The seniors were in total disbelief because I was ready to go to the zoo while everyone else was getting ready for the GNT game.”
“I truly feel that Montclair State was the best fit for me both academically and athletically. The team was very impressive and the coaching staff was great to work with. As for the school itself, as someone who wants to pursue a career in the the communication and media arts field, the location, combined with the great program they have, will set me up for a great future.
“Playing soccer was one of my favorite parts about being in high school. Not only did I meet some of my best friends through the program, but I also got to grow a lot as a player. I’ll never forget my memories on the team, such as scoring my first goal, getting Coach Dip’s 100th win, celebrating our senior night, and endless more things. Overall I am very thankful for the experience and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.”
Academically, what I like about Susquehanna is mainly focused around my major of accounting. The business school and accounting program especially have been spoken highly by all the people that I have spoke to. The business program has a great abroad program and they do a great job for their students after graduation. Most kids actually have a job lined up before they leave Susquehanna.
Athletically, I am very excited to play on a competitive lacrosse team for the university. The athletic fields and facilities were some of the best that I’ve seen at any college that I visited. Also besides lacrosse, the other sports at Susquehanna are very competitive. The football team is nationally ranked in the top 25 and the men’s basketball team has just won the landmark conference for 2020. Overall, I am really excited for both aspects of my college experience.
During my playing days at Nutley High School, there have been many memories that will stick with me forever. My first and most memorable memory was the day of my first high school practice. I was as nervous as I could be because I didn’t know how my skills would look at the high school level. This nervousness soon went away after a few days, but that first day of practice always sticks out in my mind. I’m definitely gonna miss all the times that I spend with my teammates over the course of the season. For this upcoming season, I believe our goal is to win our conference. We have come close in the past few years, but we just haven’t been able to get over the hump. I hope for the best for the team this season all around. Go Raiders.”
Editor’s note: This article will be continuously updated with comments from the student-athletes.