Although 14 of the LIJSL Scholarship Awards are memorial awards, they memorialize seven individuals for the way they lived, rather than defining them by the way they died. These individuals had a passion for soccer, and soccer was part of their life.
We are grateful for the corporate and foundation support that enables LIJSL to expand these awards. The contributions made by many individuals, families, and organizations enable us to honor the exceptional young adults that are a product of the Long Island Junior Soccer League
Bobbi Marks Memorial Scholarship
A native of England, Ms. Marks moved to Port Washington with her husband, a US Serviceman who served in England in World War II, in 1945. She became involved in the LIJSL through her grandchildren, who played in the league. Upon seeing all the positive programs established by the league, she and her husband David set out to give back to the league. They were major contributors to the Special Children's Program, and established the Bobbi and David Marks Scholarship Fund for promising young men and women. Upon her death in 2004, the scholarship fund was renamed in her honor.
Eileen Frazita Memorial Scholarship Female Student Athlete
Not content with the boys having all the fun, Eileen decided it was time for the girls of Deer Park. She recruited and coached their first girls' team in the mid ‘70's. Initially, there were only a few others on LI, nevertheless lively competition developed. Following that first year of competition, more club programs sprung up and the girl's division of LIJSL became firmly established, just as other similar programs were emerging across the country. Eileen was elected to the LIJSL board of directors in 1978. With help of steady volunteers, she successfully managed the summer tournaments at CW Post for years. Peter Collins then asked Eileen to manage the Boys Select Team Program. This became her signature achievement for the league. In 1987, Eileen received the LIJSL Gordon Bradley award and is an LIJSL Hall of Fame member. Sadly, she passed on June 9, 2014. Eileen would be delighted that this award is going to an outstanding female student athlete of the beautiful game.
Addie Mattei-Iaia Presidential Scholarship
In 29 years of dedicating herself to youth soccer on Long Island, Addie Mattei-Iaia touched nearly every aspect of the game. It started in Smithtown, where she continued to coach and then helped co-found the Smithtown Soccer Club. Later, she created, organized, and ran the Smithtown International Tournament that brought teams from around the world to Long Island. Soon she was volunteering at the league level, where amongst many other things, she served for 25 years as the chairperson of the LIJSL Convention. Addie served on the LIJSL Board of Directors for 18 years, and in 2004 she succeeded Peter Collins as president of the league. In ten years under her watch, the league's enrollment grew annually, and she increased sponsorships and revenues to support league programs like TOPSoccer, the Scholarship Program, the Player Development Program and more.
Pat Grecco Scholarship
Pat has personally helped more players get to college, many with full scholarships... than anyone on this planet. Mrs. Grecco has volunteered thousands of hours of her time and always finds time to help a disadvantaged family with a difficult problem. It gives her great pleasure to help others, be they the best athletes, best students, or perhaps a student who struggles in school. She has worked with a diverse group of student/athletes, including a home-schooled soccer player from Florida to many international soccer players, placing a female soccer player from Bangkok, Thailand to Hofstra University on scholarship. Best of all and it is true, she does boast a 100% success rate. "There is a school for everyone to play at as well as to study, that's what makes America such a great country."
Matthew Scarpati Memorial Scholarship
A stellar athlete who played multiple sports, Matthew was a 2008 graduate of Hall Hollow Hills HS East, and a senior captain of the school soccer team. He attended the University of Buffalo for one year before passing away at the age of 19 in 2009. A best friend to his family and friends, he is remembered for his curiosity and generosity, and the energy he had for learning.
Michael Scarpati Memorial Goalkeeper Scholarship
Though he excelled at other sports such as tennis, swimming, and baseball, soccer was Michael's passion, and he became a top flight goalie who went on to play soccer at Chaminade HS and Bryant College. Michael enjoyed working with younger players and was a huge supporter of his younger brothers, who also played soccer. Known for his passion and heart, he died in 2001 at the age of 20.
Eurosport has been an important sponsor of the LIJSL in conjunction with Inaria, and is a willing partner in nearly every league program.
Carolyn Page Memorial Scholarship
A long time coach in the Massapequa Soccer Club intramural and travel programs, and was an integral part of running the club's annual Memorial Day Tournament. She went on to become an administrator in the girls Select program. She passed away after a 14-year battle with cancer, but left us as the epitome of the ultimate soccer mom and consummate volunteer.
Frank Gorman Memorial Scholarship
Gorman started playing soccer at age three as a member of the Brentwood Soccer Club. He went on to become a HS All-America in track and a stellar soccer player at Brentwood HS, and later played college soccer at Hofstra University. A very giving person, Frank served as a youth soccer referee, coach, and trainer, and also coached at the high school level. Known for bringing people together and for his big personality, Frank passes away in 2003 at the age of 26.
Joseph Lombardo Memorial Scholarship
In addition to coaching, Joe helped start the HBC TOPSoccer Program and Special Olympic Soccer League, organized and managed the HBC Peter Renzulli Labor Day Tournament and was a champion of sportsmanship. Joe became President of HBC Soccer Club and in 1989 was inducted into the LIJSL Hall of Fame. You could always find Joe on a soccer field, whether it was watching a game, lining fields or handing out trophies. Joe was a man who touched the lives of so many people. He was a kind, generous and loving husband, father and grandfather. Joe was a man of integrity, who always saw the good in everyone. Joe Lombardo passed away on June 26, 2014.
Modell's has been a sponsor of the Long Island Junior Soccer League for more than 20 years, and are major supporters of the Sportsmanship Program and the LIJSL Convention.
Sandra Atlas Bass Scholarship
This scholarship award was established through the generousity of the Sandra Atlas Bass and Edythe & Sol Atlas Fund, Inc. A real estate executive and philanthropist involved with many charities in the Long Island region founded the fund.
John R. Pinezich Memorial Scholarship
A long-time resident of Northport, where he and his wife of 50 years, Evelyn, raised their three children, he was the founder and first president of the Northport Soccer Club. His love of soccer was endless, and his skill was evident. As a player, he played four years at Penn State and captained the Nittany Lions NCAA championship team in 1954, earning All-American honors. A year later, his team won the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup, thanks to his two goals in the final six minutes of play. A youth coach for over 30 years, he led LI teams to three gold medals in the Empire State Games in 1982, 1983, and 1984.
Throughout his life, he touched us all with his strength, modesty, dignity, curiosity, and passion. His openness of emotion, love and generosity embraced us all. We are honored to establish this memorial fund in his memory.
Michael Secko Memorial Scholarship
Over the course of his life, many admired Mike's overwhelming accomplishments, including a number of Waldlbaum's Cup wins, out-of-state titles, several sportsmanship awards, taking the Sound Beach Wildcat team from 9th Division in 1987 to 1st Division in 1992, and a personal highlight, winning the State Challenge Cup in 1994 with the Sound Beach Breakers. Aside from the medals and trophies, however, Mike's most cherished accomplishment was being an assistant coach and administrator for Terryville Fire in which his youngest son, Mark, was a member. In 2007, the Terryville Fire won the State, Region I, and National Championships. It was a proud journey to have shared with his son. Beyond soccer, Mike was a kind, loving, and generous man. His love of family knew no bounds. For Mike, soccer was about spending time with family, and all three of his sons will forever remember their biggest fan, the man who supported their entire journey. Sadly, in December 2012 Mike lost his battle to cancer, almost one year to the day he discovered his diagnosis.
Peter C. Collins Presidential Scholarship
As president of the LIJSL from 1977 to 2004, Peter Collins oversaw a period of tremendous growth in the league. Long Island Junior Soccer League more than quadrupled in size under his watch, and established benchmark programs like TOPSoccer, the LIJSL Sportsmanship Program, and the Exceptional HS Senior Games, which have been copied by leagues around the US and the world. He oversaw the creation of the annual LIJSL Convention and the LI Soccer Park, and grew the LI Cup into the largest single elimination youth soccer tournament in the world. A long time soccer coach in his hometown of Hicksville, Peter is a member of the LIJSL, Eastern New York, and National Soccer Hall of Fame.
Jonathan Marc Serota Memorial Scholarship
Jonathan Marc Serota was a 9-year old Rockville Center Soccer Club travel team member who passed away on January 9, 1983 after a sudden and brief, yet virulent illness. Even at that young age, he displayed a special gift and passion for soccer that lit up the sport for teammates and opponents alike. He was the leading goal scorer in the travel division and captain of his championship team. Nevertheless his own greatest pride was in making assists, and his greatest joy came from his team's and his teammates' successes. Jonathan Serota is remembered not just as being what many considered the dominant player in the L.I. Junior Soccer League in his division; but as a nice boy, a truly kind human being, who enjoyed the real and mutual friendship of his teammates on and off the field - such that every year on January 9th since his passing, his teammates and their parents continue to make an effort to get together in his memory. For the past 29 years, the Rockville Centre Soccer Club has sponsored The Jonathan Serota Memorial Soccer Festival on the Saturday of each Memorial Day weekend in his memory. Jonathan Serota, who was also known for academic excellence and love of learning, is remembered by the Rockville Centre Public Schools with a playground named after him at the elementary school he attended. As a result of the special outpouring that occurred from the community after his passing, The Jonathan Serota Memorial Foundation was founded. It continues to provide college scholarships each year for the high school graduating senior boy and girl soccer players who are the kind of scholar-athletes that Jonathan hoped to be.
Miles for Matt Foundation Scholarship
The Miles for Matt Foundation was founded after Matt Scarpati, 19, who was cycling on the Wantagh State Bike Path, was struck and killed by a drunk, drugged and speeding motorcyclist, who left the Wantagh State Parkway at speeds estimated to be 100 miles per hour. Matt was killed that day, but our hope was that we would make recreation in the area safer. Through community efforts and those of elected officials, we were successful in having guardrails installed. In addition, the bronze sculpture of a cyclist was placed in the park. This sculpture inspires conversations about many things, such as safety, cycling and life. Through donations and fundraising events, Miles for Matt Foundation supports scholarships, athletics, MADD and medical research.
TOPSoccer Volunteer Scholarship
This scholarship is supported by Modell's and given in memory of George Hoffman, a member of the LIJSL Hall of Fame, and a member of the league Board of Directors for decades before his untimely passing in 1997.