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December 29, 2012
Local leagues, club, teams, companies help families, victims in Sandy relief

Sixty-five teams participated in the Playing for Angels tournament, which raised $10,000 for the Dresch family of Staten Island.
Sixty-five teams participated in the Playing for Angels tournament, which raised $10,000 for the Dresch family of Staten Island.
Photo courtesy of ENYYSA
Several area leagues, clubs and teams and even companies associated with soccer helped provide relief for super storm Sandy.

The list includes:

* SportsSignup in Saratoga Springs made a $10,000 donation to the Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association leagues most affected by Sandy. The Cosmopolitan Junior Soccer League, Long Island Junior Soccer League and Staten Island Youth Soccer League each received $3,333. “We are a national company but New York State is our home and even members of our own families have been affected by Hurricane Sandy,” SportsSignup CEO Anthony Bruno said. “We wanted to give to these organizations to help them get back on their feet.”

* The LIJSL held a food drive on Nov. 10 and 11 at the Peter Collins Soccer Park in Plainview and the LIJSL office in Ronkonkoma. A total of 4,134 lbs. of food, personal care items, home-cleaning supplies and a van full of coats and blankets, were donated by Long Island soccer families.

* Hauppauge Soccer Club coach Joe Grippo organized a fundraiser on Nov. 18 that raised $15,000 in donations and more than 9,000 lbs. in non-perishable items for the American Red Cross and Island Harvest. “He put the event together in six days,” Hauppauge S.C. president Pedro Contreras said. “Although there were many others in our club who assisted, it was his tireless work that made the event so successful.”

* The Boys Under-11 West Babylon Pride assisted with food handouts while the parents cooked some hot meals. The team also collected money to help two families on the team that lost household items and one family that lost the first floor of its home.

* The Girls Under-11 Manorville Starz adopted their division opponents, the Lindenhurst Lightning. “When they found out about the devastation in our community, their soccer families got together and put together donations for our community,” Lindenhurst Coach Tina Sarnicola said of the Manorville team. “Kristin (Mahoney), their head coach, drove out with an SUV load of donations. She drove out again the next day with donations, and they have also helped arrange a truck from Virginia to come with more supplies.”

* The Deer Park Soccer Club held a collection drive on Nov. 9 at their intramural fields. There were donations of food, clothing and household goods. Through a church in Deer Park, the club was able to get the donations to the town of Lindenhurst to distribute to people in need. The club also collected $533, which is being donated to the Red Cross.

* The Bay Shore Soccer Club had a food and coat drive to benefit Sandy victims and adopted several local families for Thanksgiving.

* The East Islip Soccer Club, assisted by the neighboring West Islip Soccer Club, hosted nearly 70 intramural and travel teams on Nov. 18-19 in its “Soccer Over Sandy” tournament. A total of $28,000 was raised for Sandy relief. East Islip also made a $2,500 donation to the EJ Autism Foundation.

* The Auburndale Soccer Club in Queens collected money for a local family affected by the storm. The family has a child that plays for Auburndale, and once the club heard that the family had lost its home and personal belongings, it started a collection at the club’s annual dinner dance. more than $1,100 was raised that night, which was matched by the club. A group of five coaches made additional donations to bring the total to $5,000. Auburndale also set up a pick-up location through the club and shipped three truck-loads of clothes and food to Staten Island.

* Breakaway, a training organization that works with Staten Island Youth Soccer League clubs, hosted a charity indoor soccer tournament, “Staten Island Soccer Over Sandy.” The tourney was held at the Victory Sports Arena on Veteran’s Day and raised $5,000 for the Staten Island families most affected, including the Dresch family, which lost George and his 13-year-old daughter Angela. Clubs that participated were Notre Dame Academy, Richmondtown, St. John Newman, Silver Lake and Staten Island United.

* SIYSL club Our Lady Help of Christians hosted 65 teams on Dec. 8 in OLHC’s Playing for Angels tourney. This indoor/outdoor tournament was played at IS34, Angela Dresch’s school. A total of $10,000 was raised for Dresch Family Funds and OLHC Hurricane Relief. Every player received a bracelet and tournament T-shirt in purple, which was Angela’s favorite color.
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