The Verona High School Sports Boosters had its Senior Athlete Awards Banquet on Tuesday night at Primavera in West Orange.
Luke Weiss received the Boosters’ Outstanding Male Athlete of the Year award. In Boosters tradition, Weiss received his award from the previous year’s recipient, who was Frank Greco. Weiss, who played football all four years at VHS, will be playing football this fall for St. Francis University. He has won many SEC Conference awards, including 1st Team SEC Colonial Division Offense 2012 and 1st Team SEC Independence Division Defense in both 2012 and 2013. He also played varsity basketball from 2012 to 2014.
Track and cross country standout Melanie Egan received this year’s Outstanding Female Athlete of the Year award, receiving her award from Amanda Langan of the class of 2013. She earned multiple conference awards during her four years at VHS, and repeatedly qualified for her sport’s championship meets. Egan, who will attend Montclair State University, also set meet and VHS records in the 3200m, the 3200m relay, the 4x800m and distance medley.
VHS Athletic Director Gary Farishian presented the Maroon & White Award, which goes to the male and female athletes who show courage and perseverance. This year, he chose Natalie Wertz, Alex Kaslander and Paul Scully. Wertz, who played softball all four years at VHS, will be attending Princeton University. Scully was a four-year member of the varsity wrestling squad and a captain in 2014, when he scored his 100th win. Also a two-year starter for VHS baseball, Scully will be attending Bloomsburg University. A football and basketball player who achieved 1,000 career points, Kaslander will be playing for Gettysburg.
Track athletes Chris Sweeney and Sarah Conboy won the Varsity Letter Award, which goes to the student athletes with most varsity letters. Sweeney played both soccer and track, and won both the 400m and 110m high hurdles at the state Group Championships this past weekend. He will be attending MIT. Conboy, who can lay claim to school records in both the distance medley and 4x800m, will attend the University of Pittsburgh.
Fred Hill Jr., the assistant basketball coach at Seton Hall University and former head coach of Rutgers University, was this year’s guest speaker.