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Photos from the May 5th WNYAFA Junior Combine
Nesbitt, Smith honored by Alliance
The Western New York Amateur Football Alliance honored the Scholar Athletes at a banquet at Ilio DiPauloʼs Restaurant last night.
The Alliance was formed 11 years ago by several local football fans who wanted to support and promote amateur football at all levels.
“Weʼre devoted to amateur football,” Alliance President Tim Jerome said.
“We want to support amateur football from the Little Loop level all the way up to the colleges in Western New York.”
The Alliance was born when two local groups decided to merge.
“We were all members of different national organizations,” Jerome said.
“We collaborated on a lot of the same stuff. We decided that we should merge and form one group and itʼs worked out well.”
Jerome said that Chuck Funke was the driving force for the Alliance.
Funke, the former Section 6 Football Chairman, died in 2010.
“Chuck really wanted to promote anything that had to do with local football,” Jerome said. “He did an amazing amount to support amateur football in our area.”
The Youth Alliance honored the Western New York Scholar Athletes for the 11th time last night.
Pete Nesbitt, a senior at Albion High School, was named the Section 6 Scholar Athlete.
Nesbitt has an academic average of 97 and ranks fifth in his class. He scored a 2020 on his SAT and is the Senior Class President. He is currently looking at several Ivy League Schools to attend college next fall and wants to major in Pre-Med.
Nesbitt was named the Player of the Year in the Class B North division as he played several positions for the Purple Eagles, leading them to the Section 6 playoffs.
Nesbitt led the team in rushing and receiving as he scored 10 touchdowns. He rushed for 851 yards and also caught 10 passes for 189 yards. He also started at defensive back and intercepted 2 passes.
Nesbitt, who is 5-11 and 170 pounds, has been timed at 4.6 in the 40-yard dash.
St. Francis senior Joe Smith was named the Msgr. Martin Scholar Athlete. Smith is a two-way lineman for the Red Raiders and helped his team win the Msgr. Martin Association championship.
The Raider beat rival St. Joeʼs 37-16 in the title game at Ralph Wilson Stadium.
Smith, a four-year starter on the offensive line, was named a firstteam All-Catholic player and a first team All Football Weekly lineman.
He has an academic average of 97 and scored an 1870 on his SAT.
Smith also plays baritone Saxophone in the St. Francis Concert and Jazz Bands.
He is hoping to major in Math at Princeton and wants to be a teacher.
Vince Tobia, the team captain for Erie Community College, was named the Katsʼ Scholar-Athlete.
Tobia, ECCʼs starter at center, anchored an offensive line that led four different running backs to 100-yard rushing games this past season.
He has an academic average of 3.1 and will attend Ashland College in Ohio next fall.
Kimani George was named the Scholar Athlete for Buffalo State College.
George, a native of Grenada, came to the United States after a hurricane destroyed his home city. He attended one year of high school in
Brooklyn before joining the Buffalo State Bengals.
George was a 4-year player and a starter at defensive end for his final two seasons. He played 33 games and made 126 tackles (18 for lost yardage) and recorded 12 QB sacks.
George, who was named a Team Captain this season maintains an academic average of 3.6 and is majoring in Criminal Justice.
The University at Buffalo honored Aaron Connacher as the Bullsʼ Scholar Athlete.
Connacher, who started at tight end and H-back for the Bulls, was a senior at Jamestown High School and had received more than 30 scholarship offers when he chose UB.
He is a 4-year letter-winner for the Bulls, a starter the past two seasons. Connacher has maintained a 4.0 academic average in the past two semesters and is majoring in Science and Sociology.
The Buffalo Bills Alumni Association, led by Booker Edgerson, Lou Piccone, Adam Linger and other past Billsʼ players, named Cheektowaga lineman
Mike Morganstern the winner of the Tom Day-Tom Sestak Award for Defensive Player of the Year.
Morganstern was a two-way starter at center on offense and at defensive tackle as he helped the Warriors reach the Class B semifinals and a 7-2 record.
He led the team with 68 tackles and 4 QB sacks.
Morganstern also maintains an academic average of 97 and was named to the All-Western New York Academic Team. He is currently deciding whether to attend Kent State University or the University of Pittsburgh.
The Buffalo Bills Booster Club named the winners of the Bob Kalsu Memorial Scholarship Award of $1,000. Billsʼ lineman Bob Kalsu was the only NFL player who was killed in action in Viet Nam.
Richie Moore, a two-way starter at Orchard Park, was a major contributor to the Quakers run to a 13-0 record and the New York State Class AA championship this past season. Moore played defensive end, outside linebacker and middle linebacker on defense. He also played tight end and fullback on offense.
Moore has an academic average in the high 90s despite taking a class loaded with Advanced Placement courses, including AP Calculus.
St. Francis senior Dan Mangino was also named a scholarship winner by the Booster Club.
Mangino has an academic average of 102 and is deciding to attend Dartmouth or Cornell.
Mangino is the President of the Franciscan Youth Ministry and will shortly earn the rank of Eagle Scout. He returned from a knee injury this past season and also played basketball for two seasons and track for four.
Gil Eaton, of Lockport, was honored for his Contributions to Amateur Football. Eaton has coached in the Lockport Little Loop while serving as NYFL Secretary.