York Prep fared well in every sport this fall, as its boys’ and girls’ teams in volleyball and soccer all finished in the top three of either the Independent School Athletic League (I.S.A.L.) or the Girls Independent School Athletic League (G.I.S.A.L.).
Leading the way was Girls’ Varsity Volleyball, culminating three championship seasons in a row with its first undefeated season. Coach Chris Durnford attributes his players’ perfect 12-0 season to York’s annual volleyball pre-season camp—an intense week with six-hour days of conditioning, fundamental skills, and basic strategies. The camp welcomes middle and upper schoolers alike. Coach Durnford headed the camp this year, assisted by Varsity veterans who mentored newer players, thus adding a level of approachability–“kids working with kids,” said Durnford.
Boys Varsity Soccer almost claimed a championship as well. Coach Doug Hill’s team jelled in mid-season and surged to tie for first place in I.S.A.L. regular play. Closing the season with six straight victories, it lost by one goal in the championship game to Le Lycée Français de New York. Two York players, including the goalie, made the All-League selection.
As with the Girls’ Varsity team, York’s pre-season training camp proved beneficial for Middle School Volleyball. The group won seven straight before dropping games to the Dalton School and the United Nations International School. Reaching the semi-finals, the team placed third in the league with a 7-3 record.
Middle School Co-ed Soccer rebounded from a slow start to finish strong by winning the last five games. They transformed themselves into a fine team and supported each other on and off the field, achieving a third-place finish in the league.
The girls and boys in Varsity Cross-Country may have made the greatest strides of all. Most were first-time competitors, but several had an outstanding season. Four of the six runners on this co-ed team qualified for and competed in the New York State Association of Independent Schools Cross-Country Championship, featuring the top cross country runners in the state. These athletes will provide a strong foundation for York to compete in 2009.
The hidden ingredient in York’s accomplishments was the enthusiastic support of students and parents at both home and away games. “We pride ourselves in school spirit,” said Headmaster Ronald Stewart.