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May 20, 2019 - 3:21pm

Press release:

A total of 120 teen leaders from New York State, including six from St. Joseph Catholic School and Notre Dame High School in Batavia, targeted Altria Group executives and shareholders on Thursday, May 16th, with an anti-tobacco, anti-nicotine message for the fourth consecutive year.

Their actions, centered outside the Richmond Convention Center in Richmond, Va., and areas nearby, focused on why the tobacco giant baited consumers and public health officials with the promise of withdrawing pod-based nicotine products from the market in order to combat teen vaping use, only to invest billions in an e-cigarette company.

“Altria blamed nicotine pods and fruity flavors for fueling a surge in teen vaping,” said Brittany Bozzer, coordinator of the Reality Check program of Tobacco-Free GLOW. “If that’s the case, then why did they invest in Juul, the company that made these types of e-cigarettes so popular?”

Altria Group poured $12.8 billion into the e-cigarette company Juul Labs. This investment will allow Juul products to be displayed alongside regular cigarettes in the nation’s retail outlets, a combination that undercuts earlier promises Altria made with former Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Commissioner Scott Gottlieb to clamp down on the youth vaping “epidemic.”

“Despite what they say, Altria spends billions marketing their deadly products right in front of us, first cigarettes and now Juul,” said Krysta Hansen, a Notre Dame High School sophomore and Reality Check champion.

“Their goal is to create a new generation of customers—just in a different product. Enough is enough, already!”

The demonstrating teens represent Reality Check of New York and some were dressed in waders and carried fishing poles with a fresh catch of Juul nicotine pods and Marlboro cigarettes dangling from them.

Eight Reality Check teens and two youth leaders were given shareholder proxy tickets and went inside the meeting to address corporate tobacco executives and ask questions.

Some youths took their stories right to the biggest fish – the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Altria Group, Howard Willard.

They want Altria executives, as well as the entire tobacco industry, to know that they won’t be “Fuuled” by Big Tobacco investment in Juul and will continue to carry out the awareness-raising work they start in Richmond in their communities back home.

Public health officials and youth leaders for Reality Check, who have successfully fought to eliminate youth-attracting marketing tactics like colorful packaging and candy flavors in cigarettes through the years, see this as their next big battle to reduce teen tobacco use.

Studies show that kids who shop in stores with tobacco marketing, such as gas stations and convenience stores, are 64 percent more likely to start smoking than their friends who don’t.

Reeling in more information:

Findings on youth tobacco use and tobacco industry marketing in places where children and young adolescents can see it indicate:

  • The average age of a new smoker in New York is 13 years old, and 90 percent of adult smokers say they first tried smoking by age 18.
  • The U.S. tobacco industry spent an estimated $9.5 billion on advertising and promotion of cigarettes and smokeless tobacco in 2013. This includes nearly $220 million annually in New York State, or nearly $602,000 a day.
  • Stores popular among adolescents contain almost three times more tobacco marketing materials compared to other stores in the same community.

Last week's Altria shareholders demonstration was a joint effort between Reality Check NY, No Limits of Nebraska, and Counter Tools of Chapel Hill, N.C., a nonprofit organization that provides training to public health workers who are working on point-of-sale tobacco control.

Reality Check is a teen-led, adult-run program that seeks to prevent and decrease tobacco use among young people throughout New York State.

In preparation for demonstrating on Thursday, the Reality Check youth spent all day Wednesday learning about tobacco control policies; how the tobacco industry contracts with retailers; and how they can stand up, speak out and make a difference in the fight against Big Tobacco.

For more information about Reality Check, visit realitycheckofny.org.

The New York State Department of Health, Bureau of Tobacco Control funds Tobacco-Free GLOW to increase support for New York State’s tobacco-free norm through youth action and community engagement. Efforts are evidence-based, policy-driven, and cost-effective approaches that decrease youth tobacco use, motivate adult smokers to quit, and eliminate exposure to secondhand smoke.

July 20, 2018 - 2:01pm

Submitted photos and press release:

Notre Dame High School sophomores Benjamin Streeter and Krysta Hansen, as well as junior Maddie Payton -- local leaders in exposing what they see as the manipulative and deceptive marketing tactics of the tobacco industry -- have just returned from the annual Reality Check Youth Summit at Cazenovia College in Central New York.

During leadership workshops and teambuilding exercises with 150 other youth from around the state they made plans for raising awareness in their own communities about the impact tobacco marketing has on youth.

“The average age of a new smoker in New York is just 13 years old, and no one wants to see a kid start smoking,” Maddie said.

“It seems like tobacco companies are trying to deceive kids with packaging that looks like candy and thousands of flavors that appeal to kids like strawberry and bubble gum,” Krysta said.“The more kids see tobacco the more likely they are to start smoking. And we’re here to say we’ve seen enough tobacco in our communities.”

“Tobacco companies put most of their marketing in stores where 75 percent of teens shop at least once a week,” Benjamin said. “We’re speaking out in our communities and all across the state to protect youth from tobacco marketing and the dangers of tobacco use.”

Youth Demonstrated How Bright Colors, Tobacco Displays Appeal to Kids

During the Youth Summit, Reality Check members demonstrated how they believe tobacco companies’ deceptive marketing draws kids to tobacco products, using large displays of what would normally be considered kid-friendly items including large cutouts of:

  • A kids’ birthday cake with cigarettes for candles, and a banner reading “The average age of a new smoker is 13”;
  • A crayon box with cigarettes instead of crayons that reflect startling statistics about tobacco marketing and youth smoking;
  • A claw machine filled with packs of cigarettes instead of stuffed animals and toys;
  • An ice cream truck promoting tobacco product sales rather than ice cream sales; and
  • Open packs of cigarettes on the blades of a working 8’ tall x 5’ wide mini-golf windmill.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

At each demonstration, Reality Check youth explained how the supposed kid-friendly exhibits grab the attention of passersby just as the tobacco industry is grabbing youth’s attention with tobacco marketing in stores.

Reality Check empowers youth to become leaders in their communities in exposing what they see as the manipulative and deceptive marketing tactics of the tobacco industry.

The organization’s members produce change in their communities through grassroots mobilization and education.

Reality Check in this area is affiliated with Tobacco-Free Genesee, Livingston, Orleans and Wyoming counties (TF-GLOW).

#SeenEnoughTobacco is an online campaign with the goal of safeguarding children from the billions of dollars of hard-hitting tobacco promotions in places where children see them.

Parents, community leaders and others interested in protecting youth are encouraged to learn more at SeenEnoughTobacco.org.

September 7, 2017 - 3:06pm

Press release:

The families of David Swinton and Christina Volpe are proud to announce "Play It Forward," a basketball event and fundraiser to be held at 6 p.m. on Nov. 4 in the Notre Dame High School gym at 73 Union St. in Batavia.

Join us in celebrating these recently deceased Batavians for their achievements in sports and their impact on local youth.  

Members of the school alumni and staff, as well as former teammates of Christina, will play to raise funds for local charities.  

One-hundred percent of all money raised will be donated to local causes. 

The evening will begin with a welcome and greetings from Wade Bianco, principal of Notre Dame High School, and Mike Rapone, the school's Athletic director. The event will feature basket raffles, and food and beverages will be available for purchase.  

The event will center on an alumni game, which we are certain all will enjoy.

Alumni of all ages and skill levels are welcome to participate. The more the merrier, with family fun being the entire measure of success. We are planning a co-ed pickup style game, with a running clock, in which players can sub in and out as freely as necessary.

We will have officials, but we hope to see a premium of offense, and  minimum defense!

In October 2015, Christina Volpe died suddenly at St. Francis Hospital in Greenville, S.C. A graduate of Notre Dame High School and Roberts Wesleyan College, Chrissy was an outstanding player in volleyball and basketball. Many of her records set at Notre Dame are still unbroken.

Throughout her educational career, she was a source of motivation for teammates and aspiring athletes.

In November 2016, David Swinton passed away tragically while enjoying the great outdoors, one of his many passions. As a beloved and respected teacher, Dave worked with students at Genesee Valley BOCES in crisis intervention. He coached varsity soccer and softball at Notre Dame, as well as modified basketball.  

His kindness and good humor were major keys to his success.

The community is invited to come for an evening of sport and camaraderie as we remember the lives of these two people who eagerly played it forward.  

Please call to get your name on the list to play in the Alumni Game. 

"It is when you give of yourself that you truly give." (Kahlil Gibran)

Contacts:

  • Mike Rapone, ND Athletic Director  

           [email protected]

           [email protected]      

           (585) 343 278, ext. 115

  • Margaret and John Volpe   

           585-813-1110

  • Jane Swinton  

           585-548-2898

August 9, 2017 - 2:40pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, Announcements, notre dame high school.
Liz Barrett and Marguerite Badami are trying to organize a reunion for the members of Notre Dame High School Class of 1972.
 
Tentative plans for a 45th reunion call for a social after the Homecoming Football game on Sept. 30th.
 
Please contact us at the following website if you are a member of our class and share with us your ideas for a reunion:
 
 
Thank you,
Liz Barrett and Marguerite Badami
October 13, 2016 - 4:09pm
posted by Billie Owens in notre dame high school, batavia, news.

From 6 to 8 p.m. next Wednesday, Oct. 19, Notre Dame High School will hold its annual Fall Open House for prospective students. Everyone is invited to come “Experience the Difference” of a Notre Dame education.

Teachers will be on hand along with many clubs and sports coaches. The Notre Dame experience is affordable for all, with more than 80 of students receiving financial aid and scholarships.

Notre Dame is a Catholic school with a physically and emotionally safe learning environment welcoming to all. Its Tradition of Excellence continues with a graduation rate of 100 percent for the Class of 2016, earning $4.6 million in scholarships. Please visit to learn more about this small school community with big school possibilities.

Notre Dame is located at 73 Union St. in the City of Batavia. Phone is 343-2783​. Email is:    ​[email protected]

September 20, 2016 - 6:10am

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Batavia varsity Lady Devils Volleyball Team played last night in their annual matchup at home versus the Notre Dame Fighting Irish and won 3 sets to 1. Batavia’s first set came out on top, winning 25 to 16, led by freshman Courtnee Yasses serving one ace and servicing numerous times. Senior Courtney Burns added five kills.

In the second set, Batavia continued to start strong going on a 10-2 run, Notre Dame called time-out. They changed their game up a little and then slowly chipped away Batavia’s lead, which eventually tied the game at 18. Batavia called time-out to regroup but Notre Dame won the set 25-21. Thea Bochicchio and Julia Streeter added combined four kills. Natalie Thorton had seven digs.

Third set, Notre Dame continued the momentum to lead by a few points 10-7, then Batavia’s Courtney Burns served an ace and Batavia called time-out. Notre Dame increased their lead to eight points until Batavia regained the serve and Courtnee Yasses started to serve. The freshman continued to win points for Batavia to tie the set 19-19, Notre Dame called time-out.

Both teams exchanged the lead until the end where Batavia won by two points 25-23 to lead two games to one after three. Batavia Junior Taylor Stefaniak had six digs and Senior Maria Canzoneri had three aces and four digs.

Fourth quarter, Batavia jumped on a lead of 16-3 then Notre Dame called time-out. The Irish made some errors that let the set slip away; Batavia won 25-10, to win the match three to one. Batavia’s Stefaniak sisters each had three kills and senior Maria Canzoneri added three aces.

For more photos and to purchase prints click here.

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October 8, 2015 - 9:59pm

Stroll, twist, and jive your way to "Let's Go To The Hop!" -- an old-fashioned sock hop dance organized by Notre Dame High School, the Batavia Peace Garden, and the ARC of Genesee and Orleans Counties.

Prizes will be awarded to the best dressed and to the best dancers! And what's a sock hop without having it in a gym? Student volunteers from Notre Dame High School will be decorating the gymnasium for a 1950s dance, complete with streamers, lights and a balloon arch.

Live music will be provided by The Union Blues, playing all of your favorite hits from the '50s and '60s, including songs by Elvis Presley, the Beatles, Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons, Sam Cooke, Buddy Holly, Bill Haley and the Comets, and much more! 

In addition, the ARC culinary program will have a buffet featuring root beer floats, hamburgers, soft pretzels, and more for just $5 per person. All proceeds from the buffet will benefit ARC programs.

Tickets to the dance are $10 general admission and $5 for anyone 18 and under. Tickets can be purchased at the door or at the following locations: Roxy's Music Store (228 W. Main St., Batavia), the Holland Land Office Museum (131 W. Main St., Batavia), from any Peace Garden volunteer or from any member of The Union Blues. Ticket sales are limited to the first 400 people! For more information, call 585-757-2451.

September 23, 2015 - 1:39pm

Press release:

On Saturday, Oct. 3, Notre Dame High School is proud to present the wildly funny, interactive experience of “Joey & Maria’s Comedy Italian Wedding.” You are an invited guest to an anything-but-traditional Italian wedding. The craziest two Italian families you’ll ever meet will make you dance the Tarantella, witness the vows, and take part in some unconventional surprises.

Tickets are $30/person or $55/couple, which includes appetizers provided by the Culinary Arts Department of ARC, salad, homemade spaghetti dinner (sauce compliments of Margie Misiti), homemade meatballs (compliments of ND’s principal, Wade Bianco, his wife Darlene, and Darlene’s 91-year-old mother), dessert, beer, wine, non-alcoholic beverages, basket raffles, 50/50 raffles, and door prizes.

Doors open at 5:30 p.m., cocktails start at 6, and dinner starts promptly at 6:30. Pre-sale tickets are strongly recommended, seating is limited. Seats are filling fast, don’t miss out.

Visit Great Lakes Productions Joey and Maria at www.joeyandmaria.com and watch the video link at the bottom of the page. See you at the wedding!

February 5, 2015 - 2:54pm
posted by Billie Owens in notre dame high school, byron, Blood Drive.

Press release from the American Red Cross:

At a very young age, Matthew Kota, of Byron, knew exactly what he wanted to be when he grew up — a doctor. But sadly, his dreams were cut short. In memory of Matthew and his 24th birthday, the Batavia community and surrounding areas are encouraged to give the gift of life and donate blood at a special American Red Cross blood drive on Saturday, Feb. 7, at Notre Dame High School in Batavia.

The recent winter weather and widespread flu have impacted the ability of some eligible, healthy donors to give blood. Dozens of blood drives have been cancelled and thousands of donations have gone uncollected because of the storms. Despite the weather, hospital patients still need blood.

“Matthew never waited for anything to happen, he made things happen,” said Jason Kota, Matthew’s father. “He was truly one of a kind and I’ve yet to meet anyone else on this earth like him.”

Matthew enjoyed the outdoors and had a smile that would light up a room, but it was his humanitarian spirit that friends and family say was contagious. Matthew had a desire to help people, and that’s one of the reasons why he became a blood donor and also volunteered with the Red Cross. He had hoped to join the Gallon Donor Club and even though he did not achieve that goal, his family and friends are now carrying out his wishes by holding blood drives in his memory.

“Matthew was our son, a friend, leader and now our Angel,” Jason Kota said.
 
Matthew, the eldest of four children, was just 17 years old when he passed away in 2008 from complications of brain surgery. Matthew had a large arterio-venous malformation or AVM. A vein in his head was significantly larger than it should have been. Doctors believe AVM is congenital and dates to birth.

Matthew’s family and friends say hosting this blood drive is a unique way to memorialize what Matthew stood for — helping others. They are now giving back by turning their heartbreak into hope for other families in need. Matthew’s younger brother, Sean, graduated from Notre Dame High School.

Donate Blood in Memory of Matthew Kota
Saturday, Feb. 7
9 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Notre Dame High School
73 Union St.
Batavia

To make an appointment to donate, download the Blood Donor App, call 1-800-RED CROSS or visit redcrossblood.org

All presenting donors will receive a $5 Dunkin' Donuts card as part of the “Dunkin’ Donors Make a Difference” campaign.
The Red Cross urges healthy, eligible donors to make an appointment to give blood or platelets to help hospital patients and maintain a stable blood supply. Blood donors of all types are needed, particularly O negative, A negative and B negative and platelet donors. One blood donation can help save up to three lives.
 
How to donate blood

Simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit redcrossblood.org <http://www.redcrossblood.org> or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) to make an appointment or for more information. All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age (16 with parental consent in some states), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.
 
About the American Red Cross
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission.

For more information, please visit redcross.org <http://www.redcross.org> or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross <http://www.twitter.com/redcross>.

January 31, 2014 - 3:00pm

Join us on February 8, 2014 for Notre Dame's 22nd Annual Trip Night at the Clarion Hotel. The 2014 trips include Hawaii, Key West, Cape Cod, Buffalo A night a Salvatore's Grand Manor & Dinner at Russell's, Erie Splash Lagoon, Sunny Hill Golf Resort, Beaver River Lodge and many more. There will also be a special Veterans vacation giveaway for a lucky veteran and their family.

Tickets are $40 per person or two for $75 which includes dinner and drinks. We're offering a free ticket to any servicemen - retired, reserve or active duty, with the purchase of a regular priced ticket. Reduced room rates are available for the night, live entertainment throughout the eveing with comedian Hiram Kasten & Biggs Sound & Entertainment. Must be 21 or older to be admitted. 

Giveaways will include 50/50's, 60/40's, 70/30's, wagon of wine, dessert raffle, fruit bouquets, lottery giveaway, Muckdog tickets, Darien Lake tickets, Bison game box seats, bus getaways, reverse raffle and more!

For tickets and more information or to make a donation of any kind, contact Notre Dame High School Advancement Office at (585) 343-2783 Ext. 144 or visit us online at: www.ndhsbatavia.com. or contact Anita Strollo at (585) 813-5371 or at [email protected]

March 20, 2013 - 12:21am

In this short video, St. Joe's fourth-grader Andres Mateos demonstrates the use of a Bo, a martial arts weapon from Korea.

Andres was one of many talented youths from Genesee County competing in the "Make Some Noise Area-Wide Talent Show" at Notre Dame High School last night.

Proceeds from this event will be donated to the Western New York chapter of "Make Noise 4 Kids," a nonprofit organization that raises money and awareness in the fight against pediatric cancer.

Here are some of the other performers:

Natalie Matuszak (Notre Dame) singing and playing the guitar for "I Wouldn't Mind" by He is We.

Nathan Beck (Notre Dame) singing and playing the original song "Can't Wait."

Kathryn Fitzpatrick (John Kennedy School) singing a cappella "Wizard and I" (from the Broadway musical "Wicked").

Matuszak and Gabrielle Linsey (Notre Dame) dancing to Rihanna's "Right Now."

Peter Kehl (Notre Dame) singing "Bring Him Home" from "Les Miserables" (dressed as Jean Valjean).

Laura Guiste (Batavia High School) singing "Love Story" by Taylor Swift.

Jon Korzelius, Tyler Hamm and Tristan Korzelius (all from Oakfield-Alabama) performing "The Pit and the Pendulum," a rock medley of original and popular rock songs.

Hailey Natalizia (Pembroke) singing "I'm Gonna Love You Through It" by Martina McBride.

Due to some technical difficulties, I was unable to take pictures of all the performers. My apologies and congratulations on a job well done to the following:

Keara Zerillo, Erin Phillips and Serena Strollo-DiCenso (St. Joseph School), who sang "Wings" by Little Mix.

Kyle Kendall (John Kennedy School), who performed a ball spinning act.

Fiona Beck (St. Joseph School), who sang and played "Don't Know Why" by Norah Jones.

Jake Krajewski, Tyler Barrett, Peter Kehl, Janelle Fancher and Lydia Moens (Notre Dame), who performed a short play called "The Legend of Krately House."

Tyler Hamm and Jon Korzelius (Oakfield-Alabama), who performed a drum duet.

Tracy Read and Beth Johnson-Walsh (Oakfield-Alabama), who sang and played the piano for "Hometown Glory" by Adele.

The winners of the contest were, left to right, Beck (first place), Cheverie (honorable mention), Phillips, Strollo-DiCenso and Zerillo (honorable mention), Kehl (third place), Korzelius and Hamm (second place) and Natalizia (pictured separately).

So as to fit them all in clearly, here is a picture from the other side:

Natalizia was happy to be another honorable mention.

As first prize winner, Beck was awarded $150. He donated his entire winnings to "Make Noise 4 Kids."

February 14, 2011 - 2:39am
posted by Timothy Walton in notre dame high school, sports.

For the second time this year, hockey fans filled the Falleti Ice Arena for the cross-town matchup between the Ice Devils and the Fighting Irish. The Devils were out for revenge after losing the first matchup and succeeded, upsetting the Irish 4-2.

"It felt great to beat a really good team going into sectional play," said Batavia senior captain Tim Finnell. "Now we have momentum to build off of."

The Irish got on the board first as Tyler Kessler set up Brett Perfitt in front of the net, where he put the puck past Batavia goaltender Adam Kurek.

Freshman Rich Francis then put Batavia on the board to even the game at 1-1. Joe Saraceni was credited with the assist.

Conor Holvey beat ND goalie Tom Dehr for his first of two goals to give Batavia the lead off an assist from Trevor Powers.

Zach Blew and Dylan Versage set up Josh Johnson to tie the game for the second time at two goals each to end the 2nd period.

Heading into the 3rd period tied 2-2 was a familiar scenario for both teams. Last time the two teams faced off it was the same situation, and Notre Dame made the most of the 3rd period by scoring 4 goals to win 6-2.

"Last game we got too hyped up going into the 3rd and we came out flat. When a couple bounces went their way we started to hang our heads because things weren't going our way," says Batavia forward Josh Marr. "This time we stayed calm and knew what had to be done in order to win this game...we had no room to take any shifts off."

Finnell led Batavia into the final period as Holvey and Trevor Schimley set him up to beat Dehr right side.

Holvey sealed the win for the Ice Devils, netting an empty net goal as the buzzer sounded to end the score 4-2.

Both Kurek and Dehr made 17 saves for their respective teams.

January 15, 2011 - 5:00pm
posted by Timothy Walton in batavia, notre dame high school, sports.

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The Falleti Ice Arena was packed with both Notre Dame and Batavia fans who were hoping their team would come away victorious. It was the Notre Dame fans that got their wish as their team had a powerful third period and defeated host Batavia 6-2.

"We were pumped to get out there and play them," said Batavia forward Nate Palmer. "It's always a fun game, but unfortunately it didn't end the way we wanted it to."

Batavia Notre Dame got on the board first as Josh Johnson snuck the puck by Batavia goaltender Adam Kurek on a play set up by Dylan Versage. 

Batavia failed to produce a strong offense in the first period, but came out strong early in the second as Conor Holvey set up Tim Finnell to tie the game at 1-1.

Notre Dame responded shortly after by taking the 2-1 as Tyler Kessler stole the puck and beat Kurek for the goal.

Josh Marr capped off the second-period scoring as he broke down the right side of the ice and sniped the puck over the right shoulder of ND goaltender Tom Dehr.

The third period was all ND as they capitalized four times.

The Irish came out hard and Zach Blew lit the lamp off a set up from Josh Johnson and Dylan Versage.

Story continued after the jump: 

January 14, 2011 - 11:38am
posted by Timothy Walton in notre dame high school, sports, Falleti Ice Arena.

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It's one of the biggest games of the year. This Saturday the Notre Dame Fighting Irish (6-1-2-1) will host the Batavia Ice Devils (4-6-1-0) at the Falleti Ice Arena in front of an almost guaranteed sold out arena. The netcasting will begin shortly before the game that is set to faceoff at 1 p.m.

The game will be netcast live right here on The Batavian. It will include play-by-play updates and an up-to-date scoreboard and time-clock. Anyone following the netcast will also be able to participate in game polls, and get the chance to ask questions in a chat room style.

This matchup will be the first time the two teams meet this year. Notre Dame will be led by leading scorer Jack Nenni and goaltender Tom Dehr, who again this year, is ranked one of the top goaltenders in Section V. Batavia will be led by Junior forward Josh Marr, who is currently leading the team in points.

August 27, 2010 - 12:48pm

It all began with Hunter James Kelly, the little boy who wasn't supposed to live to see his second birthday.

Shortly after he entered this world, Hunter was diagnosed with Krabbe disease, a neurodegenerative disorder that affects one in every 100,000 children.

While his battle with the condition did ultimately cost him his life, Hunter beat the odds and made it to age 8. This was partly owing to his own strength and will to live, but also to the tireless efforts of his parents, who worked very hard to make sure he had the care and support that he needed -- both medical and personal.

His father is Jim Kelly, former quarterback for the Buffalo Bills. His mother is Jill Kelly, a former model, a longtime Attica resident and an alumnus of Notre Dame High School in Batavia.

The Kellys were devastated by the loss of their son, and this devastation could easily have shattered their family.

Instead, it brought them closer together.

The same devastation could also easily have snuffed out any faith they had in the possibility of any meaning, purpose or goodness in the universe.

Instead, it drew them into a close, personal relationship with a loving God.

Hunter's ordeal, the hurdles Jim and Jill faced in their marriage, their love for their children, the faith they both found...these are some of the subjects that Jill covers in her new memoir, "Without a Word: How a Boy's Unspoken Love Changed Everything." 

"Without a Word" will be Jill's third published work. The others are "Prayers for Those Who Grieve" and "Prayers of Hope for the Brokenhearted."

As you might expect, the memoir is told mainly from Jill's perspective. But it also includes contributions from Jim and the couple's two daughters, Erin Marie and Camryn Lynn. Each member of the Kelly family shares his/her experience as part of a family that has suffered together, loved together, struggled together, and believed together.

Jill will be featured on NBC's "Today Show" on Sept. 10 (the day after the book's release) and on "Fox and Friends" on Sept. 11.

In the meantime, she was kind enough to take some time out of her busy schedule to talk with The Batavian about the faith that has sustained her throughout all of her ordeals and given her a strength, peace and joy that inspires everyone around her:

February 17, 2010 - 12:52am
posted by Timothy Walton in batavia, notre dame high school, sports.

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File photo: BHS's Adam Kurek prepares to save a shot by ND's Kyle Gannon in the last matchup on January 19, 2010.

Almost exactly a month after the last time the Notre Dame Fighting Irish hosted cross town rival Batavia Ice Devils, the two teams will meet again. This time, there is more at stake. Saturday at 1:00pm the rivalry will continue into sectional play in front of what is sure to be a packed house at the Falleti Ice Arena, as the third seeded Irish will host the sixth seeded Ice Devils.

"I'm not sure if I sure be nervous or excited to play Batavia again", says Notre Dame senior Ivan Madafferi. "It's going to be one of the biggest things I will have a chance to be a part of."

The two teams have already faced off twice this season and split the pair of games. Notre Dame defeted the Devils in Batavia's David M. McCarthy Memorial Tournament 4-1, and Batavia took revenge during the second game and was victorioious 2-1.

"We'll prepare for the game just like we would for any other sectional game", says Batavia senior Will Mulcahy. "For us it helps playing Notre Dame because we always play our best hockey against them, so playing them in sectionals is just a plus". Mulcahy lead the Ice Devils in points during the regular season with 21 goals and 6 assists.

Both Notre Dame and Batavia played in the same division for the season where Notre Dame finished in second and Batavia followed in third. The way the seedings work, more teams join into the bracket for sectionals which gave the two teams the seeding differential and the opportunity to play again.

"We have been preparing for this all season" says Batavia senior Corey Kocent. "Sectionals is a true test to see how far your team has come by season end. At the beginning of the year, we made it clear that we wanted to win a sectional title."

The two teams have not faced each other in sectional play since the 2003 playoffs, where Batavia came away victorious and eventually moved on to the state championship game.

The Irish finished this season with a 12-5-2-1 (W-L-T-OTL) record and Batavia finished at 10-9-1.

Notre Dame has found much success this season with junior goaltender Tom Dehr, who is ranked one of the top goalies in Section V. He finished the season with a save percentage of 91.9% and just 1.92 goals allowed per game.

Although he may be an advantage for the Irish, their tendency to take penalties may be the advantage for Batavia, who was the least penalized team with only 109 penalty minutes, compared to the Irish who had 234.5 this season. To overcome this ND senior Jerod Adams says "we just have to worry about what's going on on the ice and keep focused on not take any bad penalties". "It's going to be key for us to not let the emotions of the building get to us", added Madafferi.

The winner of the game will move on to face the winner of  (2)Victor  vs (7)Canandaigua.

January 12, 2010 - 8:39pm
posted by Timothy Walton in notre dame high school, sports, High School Hockey.

The Fighting Irish (11-3) came out with a plan to do what they have been doing best all season; win, and that's just what they did as they defeated Geneva 4-2.

Coming off a loss last game against Victor, the Irish wanted to get right back on track and Jason Harasimowicz lead the offense  early by putting them on the scoreboard just 1:38 into the game on a one timer off a pass from Ivan Madafferi and Phil Vigneri. Madaferri followed up on his own rebound to score the second goal. Harasimowicz was credited with the assist.

The Irish kept the pressure coming throughout the period and were able to force Geneva's Alex Fitzgerald to take a hooking penalty. Tyler Kessler and Kyle Gannon took advantage of the powerplay and set up Jack Nenni for their third goal with 4:13 remaining in the period.

The third period scoring didn't stop there as Sean Kota and Josh Halle set up Phil Vigneri to cap of the scoring for the Irish, all in the first period.

Geneva came out strong in the second period but only managed to get one goal on the board. Eirik Velta scored off an assist from Emil Siedberg for the Panthers' first goal.

The Panthers had a plan to engineer a comeback as they came out hard in the third and Emil Siedberg posted an early goal to close the gap to 4-2. Notre Dame goaltender Tom Dehr had planned to keep the win secure and he did just that as he finished the game by stopping 17 shots on the day. Zach Koczent made 28 saves for the Panthers (3-8-1).

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