A trio of Hudson Valley high school varsity football standouts have been nominated by their coaches for a prestigious award that is sponsored in part through the New York Giants.
High School seniors Eric Genua (Suffern Senior High School in Rockland), Harry Ravitz (Pelham Memorial High School in Westchester) and Frank Wise (Pine Bush High School in Orange County) have been nominated for the “Heart of a Giant” award, and now will seek their communities’ assistance to help them become finalists.
The “Heart of a Giant” award is “based on an athlete’s demonstration of commitment, dedication, will, character and teamwork. Candidates must possess a strong work ethic, leadership skills, the desire to succeed both on the field and in the classroom and the ability to inspire others to work together to achieve a common goal.”
Only one of the three candidates in this group will be named a finalist, and voting for the nominees will be open for 25 days. One grand prize winner will be chosen based on video submission, stating why they have the Heart of a Giant and they will be celebrated at MetLife Park during a Giants’ home game.
Each finalist will receive $1,500 for their high school’s football program, with the winner garnering an additional $3,500.
Genua’s coach, Bill Delaney, noted that the teen has overcome many obstacles in his life to get where he is, and has become an active volunteer in his community.
“Eric has overcome a learning disability and the divorce of his parents to become our varsity football teams starting left offensive tackle,” he said. “He has volunteered with the Ramapo Police Athletic Leagues Spring Youth Flag Football Program for the last two years.
"He has also volunteered with the local chapter of Pop Warner Youth Football, the Suffern Midget Mounties. Eric is also a member of the Suffern High School Varsity Wrestling Team.
Pelham head coach Arthur Viggiano stated that Ravitz is one of the hardest-working, thoughtful players he has coached in his decade at the helm.
“In my ten years of coaching high school football, Harry Ravitz is the hardest working, most selfless and dedicated player I've ever coached” he stated. “Harry has played through numerous injuries and regardless of a win or loss, he plays with the same passion and love for football. Harry is a two-sport athlete and captain of the football and basketball teams. He also finds time to volunteer by coaching youth football and basketball.”
Wise, who has been known to assist his teammates on and off the field, was described as a “second coach on the field.”
“Frank is the hardest worker on the team, the most dedicated player on the team,” coach James Wright said of his captain. “His football IQ is off the map - he is like having a second coach on the field. In addition to football, he organizes all the fundraisers and academic sessions for the team.”
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