PYA First Championship Appearance

PYA Football Stars
PYA Football Stars

The Port Youth Athletics (PYA) Travel Tackle Football tTeam was congratulated earlier this month at the PAL Football Awards Dinner for taking second place in the Nassau County Youth Football League (NCYFL) 12-year-old Division 2 Championship.

The team members were Christian Alacqua, Michael Bazzini, James Elliott Brady, Jacob Braunschweiger, Matt Castillo, Matt Deleonardis, Matt Freeman, Henry Haberman, David Johnson, Colin Langton, Jack Magilligan, Zach Montalbano, Andrew Pizzardi, Gilly Rivera, Jack Roszko, Tyler Roszko, Walker Rudes, Andrew Stein, Alex Vivona and Declan Welch.

The PYA Travel Tackle Football Team has played in the Nassau County Youth Football League (NCYFL) for the past three years. This is the first year that a PYA team has made it to the championship game.

This year’s team ran a high-powered spread offense run by quarterback Matt Freeman and a stellar defense headed by Henry Haberman, Jacob Braunschweiger, Matt Castillo, Matt Deleonardis, Matt Freeman and Alex Vivona.

Special recognition should be given to kicker Vivona for kicking multiple points after touchdowns, which are worth two points at this age level. He is the first kicker from PYA Travel Tackle Football that has accomplished this feat during game play.

The majority of this year’s team was also was also last year’s PYA Travel Tackle Football 11U Team that made the playoffs for the first time in the 11-year-old Division 3 playoffs, losing to the Garden City team that won the championship.
The team would like to send special thanks to head coach Ron Rochester, assistant coaches David Braunschweiger, Jason Freeman, John Magilligan and Brian Wiggins, videographer Edward Welch and special assistant Frank Pizzardi for all their support throughout the season.

PYA, founded in 1963, is a nonprofit youth sports organization whose fieldhouse is located at Lions Field, which is at the end of Glen Lane in Port Washington. Early registration for PYA Travel Tackle Football (for ages 9-13) begins the first week of February and continues until the third week of August. Register early, as the teams begin practice the first week of August and the final weigh-ins for final rosters must be completed before the end of August (final date TBD).

To learn more about PYA football, visit for more information about the team and ask PYA Travel Tackle Football Commissioner Ron Rochester for detailed information on rules, practices, weigh-ins, cutoff dates and registration.