Kylie O’Melia – First County Bank Athlete of the Month

Bobby Valentine’s First County Bank Athlete of the Month for March is ten-year-old Kylie O’Melia. Kylie is currently in 4th grade at Strawberry Hill School in Stamford, and entering just her second season of playing softball. Despite it being her first full year of playing, she was able to make the Stamford Stars 10u travel softball team. How was she able to do this??…

“She is the most dedicated 4th grader we have in the facility. She is working hard to be the best she can be. She pushes herself to do better with each lesson. When she is not training with me, she is working with her dad here twice a week. The best three words to describe her are driven, dedicated and determined!” – Danielle Simoneau, Softball Instructor

In addition to her dedication, she is extremely versatile. She can be found all over the infield, from pitcher, to both corners, or even behind the dish. She always has a positive attitude, a smile on her face, and when you hear someone screaming from the dugout cheering on her teammates, that is Kylie you hear.

On the rare occasions when she is not playing softball, you can find her playing basketball or doing boxing training. You read that right, do not mess with Kylie! She also did gymnastics for years when she was younger, so it has always been nonstop sports for Kylie.

Kylie is all for new challenges, whether on the field or in the classroom. Her favorite subjects are math and science, and wants to be a scientist when she is older. That is of course after her collegiate career playing softball for the UCLA Bruins.

We here at BVSA want to congratulate Kylie once more on earning this honor of First County Bank Athlete of the Month for March. Her dedication and commitment to so many activities at such a young age is absolutely remarkable, and we are so excited to watch her continue to grow both on and off the field!

Jack Conway – First County Bank Athlete of the Month

BVSA Athlete of the Month February 2022 - Jack Conway

Bobby Valentine’s First County Bank Athlete of the Month for February is eighteen-year-old, Jack Conway. Baseball is not just a game for Jack, it is a lifestyle. You would have to go back 16 years (when BVSA first opened their doors) to where Jack first fell in love with the sport. All the way back from the age of two, Jack was hooked.

Jack plays the game with great passion and tenacity, while at the same time, spending hours and hours analyzing statistics, history, and current and former players alike. You could call Jack a utility player, but only in the greatest form of the phrase. He is a utility player in the sense that he plays numerous positions, and plays them extremely well. He is the definition of versatile. He wants to learn about every position, and thrives on getting better and better at each and every one.

When Jack was twelve years old, he realized he had a great opportunity to play this game at a high level. Since then, it’s been full steam ahead, working relentlessly to accomplish his goals. Coach Anthony Conte had this to say; “Jack and I had our first session on June 6, 2014 and WOW has it been such a fun journey watching him grow into the young man he’s become! Jack is one of those athletes that comes in, listens, applies, and works his tail off to achieve his goals. He’s one of the few local athletes I know who wakes up before school to hit the gym so he can dominate the rest of the day! Fun to work with someone who knows how to work, compete and still be one of the kindest people in the room.”

Not only is Jack a work horse on the field and in the cages, but he also is a tremendous student at Darien High School, where he will finish this past semester with a 4.0 GPA. He is still considering all of his college opportunities, but the plan is to major in Business. Wherever he ends up, he is confident that baseball will be in his future plans.

As a mentor and a role model to so many kids in his community, from baseball to church and town organizations, Jack continues to share his knowledge of the game, and the lessons he has learned throughout this journey. Baseball is so much more than just a game or a sport to Jack, it is something that has helped mold him into the outstanding young man he is today.

We here at BVSA want to congratulate Jack once more on earning this honor of First County Bank Athlete of the Month for February. His dedication and commitment to the sport speaks volumes, but the life lessons and the impact he is able to make on so many kids is truly remarkable, and why we all choose to be a part of this great game. We are beyond excited to see where Jack goes from here!

Connor King – First County Bank Athlete of the Month

“Connor is one of the most exuberant and fun kids to be around in any setting at BVSA. From baseball to our All Sports Clinic, nobody is ready to learn while at the same time having a blast doing so more so than Connor. To top it all off, he has such an unique personality that sets him apart from his peers. He really is a pleasure to coach and be around, and there is definitely a bright future ahead!”
Justin Virgulak, BVSA Facility Director


Bobby Valentine’s First County Bank Athlete of the Month for January is nine-year-old Connor King. Connor is simply everywhere, constantly on the move. He started his 2021 playing for the BVSA Fury 9u team, and then continued into the summer with Darien Little League. He played for the Darien AA summer travel team in the Friendship League where he competed against teams throughout Fairfield County. Heading into 2022, he’ll be playing for the Darien Blue Hawks 9U-A team and he could not be more excited.

Connor throws lefty and hits both righty and lefty. You read that correctly. He is probably the first switch hitter in the history of little league. The craziest part about it is that when you watch him hit from the right side and then the left side, you would not be able to tell which side is his natural side. He is THAT good and THAT comfortable from both sides of the plate. He is definitely a must see at BVSA. When we asked him about how he got into switch hitting, he said one day he just simply mixed up his left and his right and accidentally started hitting the other way. If only it were that easy for the rest of us.


“Connor brings positive energy to every practice and game, and always puts in the maximum effort to improve. He has taken huge strides in all aspects of the game, especially with his must see switch-hitting ability.” 
Matt Diurno, Coach/Instructor


When Connor is not playing baseball, you can find him on the ice. He plays for the Connecticut Junior Rangers 2012 Elite team, competing against the best teams in the country all year round. If not on the ice, he is on the lacrosse field playing for 2Way and the Greenwich Warriors.

Across all three sports, Connor is known for his work ethic, his coachability, and his overall positive attitude. He prides himself on being a good teammate and a good playmaker, and his selflessness is remarkable to say the least, especially at such a young age.


“Connor gets it in a way I’ve never seen most high school players understand. What I mean by “it” is a couple of different things. He comes into BVSA wanting to improve in all aspects of the game, both as a player and as a teammate. He demonstrates to other nine year olds, as well as to his little brother, the near impossible balance of hard work, fun, and some messing around with friends and coaches, and then how to put all three together. He carries himself with such a high level of respect, kindness, and genuine happiness. He is always just smiling and happy to be a part of a game he so clearly loves.” 
Joe Wanderlingh, Instructor 


Connor’s favorite teams include the New York Yankees and the New York Rangers, and he particularly enjoys watching Aaron Judge take the field and Adam Fox on the ice. In the classroom, he loves reading and math. He somehow finds the time for hobbies on top of the three sports, and those hobbies include reading, fishing, and golf. When he grows up, his dream is to become a three sport professional athlete. If anyone can accomplish that, it is definitely Connor. 

We here at BVSA want to congratulate Connor once more on earning this honor of First County Bank Athlete of the Month for January. Both the commitment and the love for so many things at such a young age is impressive and flat out remarkable to say the least. Combine that with the respect and care Connor has for everyone, from his coaches, to teammates, to teachers, to his little brother, Chase, and it is safe to say we are beyond excited to watch Connor grow both on and off the field.  

Ava Biasotti – First County Bank Athlete of the Month


"Ava is a very special athlete. She’s extremely hard working and competitive. Her want to get better is nearly unmatched by any of our other athletes, but what really sets Ava apart from the crowd is her attention to detail. She always makes sure her form is perfect and all the little things are right in her movement and exercises. You combine that with her work ethic and attention to detail, and you have one special athlete. I believe those attributes really shine through not only in the weight room but also on the field. I really can’t say enough great things about Ava. She will be a force to mess with as she begins her career at the collegiate level."

Our First County Bank Athlete of the Month for November is Ava Biasotti from New Canaan. Ava, now seventeen years old, has been consistently adding to her extremely impressive resume since the age of five. From a very early age, she was representing her town in multiple all star tournaments. It was around the age of ten when she really started to fall in love with softball, particularly as she continued to develop as a pitcher.

Ava began her travel softball career at the age of twelve, where she solidified her primary position as a pitcher. However, when she was not pitching, you could find her over at the hot corner playing third base. She quickly became known for both her pitching velocity and also her movement on her pitches. Her control followed very shortly after that. By the time she was sixteen, she was regularly racking up the strikeouts and had already enjoyed multiple tournament championships with her fellow CT Angels.

The local competition was fun and all, but Ava really wanted to challenge herself. She really wanted to go up against the very best. She earned herself a spot on a national team with the Jersey Intensity organization, giving her that exact opportunity to go face some of the best competition in the country.

She was able to pitch in high profile tournaments including the Texas Bombers Showcase, IDT in Colorado, and PGF Nationals in California, where the norm was facing Power 5 Conference commits. She has continued on with the organization with their 18u team, and is looking forward to attending these events again in 2022.

In addition to travel softball, Ava absolutely loves representing New Canaan High School by taking the field with the same girls she first started playing softball with. She has been starting on the mound since her freshman year. She has received honorable mention in All-FCIAC both her freshman and junior year, as well as being selected to the Junior Select L/LL game.

Ava is a senior, she is an honors student, and she is a member of the National Honors Society. She is enrolled in and enjoying multiple AP and Honors classes across her curriculum, particularly really taking a liking to science and her Mandarin language classes. She plans to pursue Astrophysics and Aerospace Engineering in college. She recently accepted an offer to continue her academic and softball career for the Bowdoin Polar Bears.

You can most often find Ava working on her spin and her swing, but especially in the winter you can find her snowboarding down the slopes in Southern Vermont. If not there, try the New Canaan Softball League, where she spends a significant amount of time volunteering. She helps out with both team practices and pitching clinics. Bottom line, Ava cannot get enough softball, as she loves giving back and helping those coming up the ranks behind her, in addition to playing. She genuinely loves surrounding herself with both coaches and players who are just as committed to the game as she is.

We here at BVSA want to congratulate Ava once more on earning this honor of First County Bank Athlete of the Month! The hours of hard work and success both on and off the field do not go unnoticed. We are excited to see what the future has in store for you! Congratulations!

Maddox Hoffman – First County Bank Athlete of the Month

“I have watched Maddox play for a few years now and have had the good fortune to work with him over the last several months. Hoffman is an outstanding athlete who can do everything. His work ethic is unmatched and his desire to be his best is so evident. His knowledge of the game of baseball and of his own skill set is very impressive. More importantly he is one the finest young men I have ever met. Always looking to lend a hand, courteous and thoughtful of others around him and so mature for his age. I look forward to working with him and watching his career evolve, it has the potential to be very special!!! Congrats Maddox, well deserved!”

Frank Ramppen, Private Instructor Tweet

BV’s First County Bank Athlete of the Month for October is thirteen year old Maddox Hoffman from Saxe Middle School. Maddox, also known around friends, family, and teammates as “M”, is the definition of a multi-sport athlete. He prides himself on being exactly that as he steps foot on the baseball diamond, the football field, and the basketball court throughout the calendar year. His “down time” from all of that comes on weekends during the winter months where he laces up the skates and hits the ice for some ice hockey. Ask him which sport is his favorite and he will probably go with whichever one he just finished playing. Safe to say, he loves it all.

Baseball has been particularly kind to Hoffman recently. He was fortunate to be a part of a World Series team this summer, in which he pitched and played shortstop for the New Canaan Rams. He finished his 2021 spring and summer campaign with a remarkable .433 batting average in 134 at bats. Out of those at bats, he led the team in doubles with fourteen. His numbers certainly speak for themselves but his leadership on the field is what makes him stand out from the rest. 

Just in case Hoffman’s baseball resume wasn’t impressive enough, he is also the captain of his seventh grade football team. What position does he play? Quarterback, of course. His team is headed to the championship game, with him leading the charge with his 1,000+ yard, 12 touchdown season. Did I mention he plays linebacker too? At this point is anyone even a little bit surprised? Hoffman was voted on by his teammates to be captain this season, and that honor and accomplishment is extremely well deserved. 

“He is probably the best quarterback in our grade, and it’s crazy how he is always working so hard to be even better. He does a great job at being a leader.” – Henry Reagan, Football Teammate

Academics are just as important as what athletes do on the field, and Hoffman is no exception to that. He not only maintains straight A’s in the classroom, he takes it a step further. He has recently started community service initiatives in order to give back as he is very thankful for everything he has. On top of that, he also does baseball lessons for his two younger brothers, Cole and Brody, as well as with some of their friends too. Last but not least, he is in the process of launching his own baseball card business. 

Success is something Hoffman is very familiar with so far in his young life. Success comes with respect for the game, leadership on and off the field, and becoming a role model for those that come after him. The leadership comes with a ton of responsibility and accountability. Hoffman has become that role model for his two younger brothers, giving them some big shoes to walk into as they continue to grow and get older as well. 

“Maddox is one of the most consistent, diligent, and competitive athletes we have working in the building. At such a young age to be so conscious of the process it takes to become better and then dedicate the time to it is not just a given. This work ethic extends into the classroom and his side hustles as well and it is amazing to see, but more so be a small part of.” – Justin Virgulak, Assistant Instructor 

We here at BVSA want to congratulate Hoffman once more on earning this honor of First County Bank Athlete of the Month for October! The hours of hard work and success on the field do not go unnoticed, and the leadership and the way Hoffman carries himself on and off the field are second to none. We are so excited to see what the future has in store because it is only going to get better from here!

Sam Abdelwahab – First County Bank Athlete of the Month

Sam Abdelwahab

Our September, First County Bank Athlete of the Month is 10 year old Sammy Abdelwahab. Abdelwahab who is our youngest athlete to be recognized for this honor to date is easily one of the most deserving we have had. The young standout puts in the time and effort in like very few. Abdelwahab is either at the academy with Abate Training, with his team through NC Select, or on his own at home constantly working to be a better baseball player. What should not go understated though is the swag he walks through life with. Abdelwahab is easily noticed with matching attire for his favorite team, repping New Canaan, or any combination of loud colors which is reminiscent of a young Zack Ramppen (August FCB Athlete of the Month) at the old academy. Abdelwahab’s swag, confidence, and awareness to name a few, are qualities that help separate him from other players his age.  

Abdelwahab is predominantly an infielder (shortstop specifically) who is also a solid option on the mound as well for his teams. He can get the job done no matter where you put him or how intense the game situation might be. This is only helped by the fact that Abdelwahab has been playing baseball since he could stand up. The game is in his blood! New Canaan Travel has been the beneficiary to this point of Abdelwahab’s abilities on the field, as a teammate, and as an example to other players around him. However, those skills are only improving as he moves into his third year of working with Abate Training. The results are becoming more and more noticeable. Recently Abdelwahab played in a Perfect Game tournament in New Jersey and lit up the competition. At the plate he went 7-9 (.778) with 2 home runs and 9 runs batted in and on the mound he was 2-0 helping his team reach the championship game. A stellar run of games that only help solidify what we can all see coming in his future.

Mike Abate had this to say, “​​Extremely proud of this young man. Just a young kid playing the game the right way. With addition to his MVPs and player of the month awards, to leading his team to both a state and regional championship. What you don’t see is all the hard work he puts in not only on the field but off. He plays the game with heart and a great deal of passion. This is the way it’s suppose to be played at any level! Keep working hard Sammy and these Home-runs will be the first of many!

Success is something that Abdelwahab is very familiar with so far in his young life. He has already been a part of two Cal Ripken state championship wins and regional title where he was recognized with the MVP award. He and his team will be headed to the Cal Ripken 10U World Series this coming summer, which is another chance for more to see his incredible skill set. With all this success though Abdelwahab is just like most other kids his age. When he is playing or working for baseball he is playing football and basketball with his friends. He is a mega sports fan – watching his Mets and Giants any chance he gets! Abdelwahab also enjoys fishing, video games, and playing with his younger brother. He is a good student who loves to read short stories but best to make them about sports, those are his favorites! When he grows up he wants to play baseball in Florida and then ultimately professionally but additionally wants to be a team doctor.

We here at BVSA want to congratulate Abdelwahab once more on earning this honor of FCB Athlete of the Month! The hours of hard work and success on the field do not go unnoticed. We are excited to see what the future has in store because it is only going to get better from here on out!

Zack Ramppen – First County Bank Athlete of the Month

Zack Ramppen – First County Bank Athlete of the Month

Zack has always been different. Anytime you evaluate talent, the great ones have the ability to make the game look slow. In a world full of “size matters“ Zack makes those comparisons mute. This kid just knows how to play the game of baseball. He’s special and has the “it” we all look for in players. I have a great deal of confidence in Zack on being the best he can be. West Virgina is getting a great player and I wish him luck!

BV’s First County Bank Athlete of the month for August is Zack Ramppen, a senior at New Canaan High.  Ramppen is one of the most athletically gifted members of the BV Community.  He is also unequivocally one of the most unique personalities we have at the academy.  There is no other individual who is similar to Ramppen in his approach to baseball, his relationships with teammates, coaches, people in general, and life as a whole.  For those who have known Zack for the entirety of his time back state side since Japan, have had the pleasure of seeing him go from the little guy over at Camp Ave to the mature future Mountaineer headed off to West Virginia roughly a year from now.  His drive, determination, instinct and relaxed outlook on baseball allow him to not just compete but stand out amongst his peers and opponents.  Headed into his Senior year as a captain of the baseball team at NCHS, this being his 4th year on Varsity – Zack is ready to make an impact on the field with his play, and more importantly as a leader of this Rams squad.

Ramppen is pretty synonymous with baseball in this area, so it isn’t too much of a surprise how in his blood baseball has been from the beginning. Ramppen spent his developing years in Japan while his father Frank coached with none other than Bobby Valentine.  So his second home was a stadium – not much more need to ingrain baseball into you.  Ramppen spent so much time in the stands, in the dugout and out on the field soaking up what it took to be a top level athlete.  Satozaki was Ramppen’s favorite player in Japan and the reason he wanted to start catching (an amazing decision that was).  It didn’t take long for Ramppen to display some unbelievable talent even at such a young age.  Between the fun had at the field and the seriousness of Japan’s little league baseball it gave the perfect opportunity for Ramppen to start developing.  Once the Ramppens came home he picked up right where he left off, New Canaan baseball and the academy didn’t know what hit them!  Everything about him was different; the little things clicked so much faster and with ease then for others.  This was clear for everyone he was exposed to, including long time BVSA employee Tim Giuliano, who had this to say:

“Zack is one of those players who clearly makes a physical difference on the field. But the beauty of his ability is not realized until the car ride home. As you reflect on all the little events that influenced the game it’s obvious that not only is Zack involved in every moment, he creates the pulse of the game.“ 

As Ramppen got to the high levels of Ripken in New Canaan and even in his early years on the big field his play never skipped a beat.  Ramppen always found a way to affect the game – offensively, defensively, on the bases, or simply as a teammate (and is still the same to this day).

It didn’t take long for heads to turn once Ramppen walked into New Canaan High.  His impact much like his older brothers was going to be felt on the baseball team from year 1 as a freshman.  That is exactly what happened, Ramppen made Varsity as a freshman and started the first three games at third base until he took over behind the plate.  Ramppen showed out and brought an energy to the team, one of youthful exuberance along with leadership that would go a long way for future years.  Unfortunately, there was no Sophomore year due to COVID but the comeback Junior season was definitely one to write home about.  Ramppen lit up the field, leading his team in nearly all offensive categories (if not all of them) and was an exemplary leader amongst a relatively inexperienced Varsity squad.  What separated Ramppen throughout the entirety of the FCIAC though, was his stellar play behind the plate.  Controlling the pitch staff, limited past balls, and a non-existent running game against it was clear the level he was playing at.  This led to being named to the All-FCIAC East team and being drafted in the CT Fantasy Baseball draft. 

The momentum steamed rolled into the summer as Ramppen, in his first summer playing Time To Sign, continued to stand out and garner recognition.  Between his coaches, his teammates, opposing coaches, and opposing players it was clear to all Ramppen came to play.  Play he did. Ramppen during his first tournament in Georgia got noticed by the right eye.  For four straight days the West Virginia scout came back to see how Ramppen was going to not just impress but top his performance from the previous day.  It was not too long after the offer was extended and accepted to commit to playing at West Virginia University.  Founder of Time  To Sign, Berg Ohanian had this to say, “How lucky are we as coaches to have a player like Ramppen – plays it the right way 100% all the time. From a good baseball family, and we can see why Zack is so good. It was a pleasure being around and having this kid with us. Bright future ahead.” It has all come together for the once little guy who used to be running all over the academy having a blast and now will get to pursue his dream of playing Division One college baseball in the Big 12 Conference. Taking him one step closer to reaching professional baseball.

Outside of baseball Ramppen is a dedicated student and has been able to achieve making honor roll every quarter of his high school career except for one.  It’s this commitment that makes it so clear that when Ramppen sets his mind to what he wants anything is possible.  His ability to stay cool, calm, and relaxed under pressure only allows for the game or whatever endeavor he takes on to slow down so he can reach the highest.  We are proud to have such a great person (more than an athlete) representing B.V.S.A.  The future is so bright and we cannot wait to see what he is able to accomplish!

Jake Benner – First County Bank Athlete of the Month

Jake Benner – First County Bank Athlete of the Month

Jake “The Terminator” Benner is a coach's dream. He started training at about 165lbs, through his hard work he’s transformed himself into a 210 lbs powerhouse in about 2 years. He’s one the most determined and hardest working athletes I’ve ever come across.

For the month of May, our First County Bank Athlete of the Month is 17 year old Jake Benner. Benner is easily a stand out amongst his peers, both in stature and what the young athlete has accomplished on and off the field. He earned this recognition long before the month of May but after a solid season for the Vikings the timing couldn’t have been better. We at B.V.S.A. were fortunate to see Benner develop over the past couple off-seasons, spending countless hours with B.V.T. Lab working hard with Renick and Mike. It was in the Lab where you could see the different motor in Benner and the effort he is willing to give to make even the most minor improvement day to day. Those “minor improvements” have been gaining forty pounds and getting not just stronger but faster and more agile. 

“Jake is one of our hardest working athletes. Ask Jake to jump and he says “how high coach”?! He’s the type of guy that comes in, puts his head down, and gets to work every single day with no questions asked. He always puts 110 percent effort into everything he does and it really showed not only in his progression in the weight room, but also on the field this spring. We could not be happier for Jake and his accomplishments and we are excited to see what comes next for this amazingly hard working athlete.”

This is apparent on the ball field if it be for practice or in the heat of a game. The infielder and pitcher is an exemplary leader no matter his performance and a player that his teammates can lean on throughout the season.

Benner is a player that can be relied upon on all sides of the ball; a big bat, with a solid glove and a strong arm on the mound. However it is his calm presence in any moment on the field at the plate, out in the field, or on the mound that raises his value to any of his coaches and teammates. This has been something that he has developed over a long period of time being a ball player. Benner has been playing since the age of 5 and fell in love with the game immediately. It was a perfect fit that was apparent and anybody in Stamford American could easily see as he played through Little League. Benner played for their 11U and 12U All-Star teams with early signs of being a dominant force. He then went on to play Stamford Legion for three years before finding his home with the Clubhouse in Fairfield. The now Junior Captain of the Westhill Vikings has also played basketball for the school in previous years as well but the diamond is where he excels the most. 

“Jake is one of the most talented, hardest working student-athletes to come through our program in years. He is 110% dedicated to everything he does regardless of what it is. In the class-room (4.5 GPA), the weight-room, or on the diamond you will not find a harder worker. Do not be fooled by his quiet and calm demeanor. On the field, he is a fierce competitor who will do whatever he can do to help us win. In my opinion, Jake is one of the best two-way players in the State. I am beyond thankful that he is on our team and we don't have to play against him!"

This made him an easy choice for the Ruden Report to nominate him for Player of the Week, which Benner ultimately won. However, it is with all this behind him as a ball player that will help him excel at the next level in the coming years.

The recognition is not just for his on-field or in the weight room work ethic because it doesn’t stop there for him. As stated above he has a 4.0 GPA and 4.5 weighted GPA. Benner also finds time to be involved with the Academy of Finance at Westhill with future plans to pursue a degree in business at a high academic institution. You can also see him spending a lot of his free time volunteering if it be with Stamford American for their winter workouts, Stamford North in their Challenger League, at the St. Leo’s Church or at Kids Helping Kids. It is simply impressive what he has been able to accomplish and do not just for himself but so many others in such a short period of time. 

We were happy and excited to be able to recognize Benner with this honor of FCB Athlete of the Month. Looking forward to seeing another year of hard work in BVT and what he will be able to achieve on the field but in his personal life as well. 

Congratulations and keep striving to best yourself each and every day because few are as hardworking, dedicated, and determined as you are. It will be a fun ride the next few years to see it all unfold.

2021 Statistics:

Offensive – .510 AVG, .576 OBP, 1.059 SLG, 25H, 8 2B, 1 #B, 5 HR, 18 R, 22 RBI, 5 SB,  

Pitching – 17.1 IP, 2 W, 2L, 2Saves, 7ER, 2.82 ERA, 4 BB, 34K


      • Academy of Finance Member – 2019 to present
      • Extracurricular Activities:
      • Westhill High School Varsity Baseball – 2020-present, named Captain Spring 2021
      • The Clubhouse Baseball – Elite baseball club providing top notch baseball instruction to aid in player development and college recruitment – National Team (2019-2020), Prospect Team (2020-Present)
      • Westhill High School Bee Club Member – Present (2021-2022) – Provide bees with shelter and harvest honey to be sold for funding school-based programs
      • Westhill High School Kids Helping Kids Club Member – Present (2021-2022)
      • Westhill High School Freshman Baseball Captain – 2019
      • Stamford Recreational Basketball League – 2019 Season
      • Westhill High School Freshman Basketball – 2018 Season – Coaches Award Recipient
      • Stamford Legion Baseball – 2017-2019 – MVP Award Recipient 2018, Coaches Award Recipient 2017
      • Stamford American Little League – 2009-2016

Volunteer Work:

      • Stamford Challenger Little League – Spring 2021 – Provide baseball instruction to players with special needs and assist with coaching games.
      • Stamford American Little League – Volunteered at winter work out clinics to aid in the development of young baseball players – Winter 2020
      • St. Leo’s Annual Church Fair – Summers 2016-2018 – Assisted with Fair set-up and breakdown; worked various game booths.
      • St. Leo’s Annual Clothing Drive – 2017 – Organized clothes to be provided to the Covenant House for under privileged families.
      • Clothes to Kids of Fairfield County – 2017-2018 – Organized and stocked the store floor to help ensure that the clothing needs of students visiting the store are met and to make the shop a welcoming place for families.
      • Still Meadow Elementary School – Volunteered at family fundraising events – organized events and assisted children with various sport competitions – Spring 2017 & 2018
      • The Food Bank of Lower Fairfield County – Volunteered throughout 2017 & 2018 – Sorted donated food items and stocked shelves

Work Experience:

      • Peak Performance Sports Camp CIT – Summer 2019 – Taught young children various sports such as soccer, basketball, and baseball
      • Stamford American Little League Junior Umpire – 2018 & 2019 Seasons & hopefully 2021!
      • Awards/Accomplishments:
      • The Ruden Report Player of the Week for outstanding baseball performance – April 2021
      • Westhill Varsity Baseball Captain – Spring 2021 to present

Clete Wheeler – First County Bank Athlete of the Month

Clete Wheeler

Clete Wheeler – First County Bank Athlete of the Month

Clete Wheeler

Our April, First County Bank Athlete of the Month is 18 year old Clete Wheeler. Wheeler is a true standout amongst his peers. A genuinely nice person,  with an unmatched motor, and a player every coach dreams of having lead his team.  A member of the BVSA community since his family moved to New Canaan many years ago. Wheeler became even more rooted into BVSA when this past year he started as instructor on top of his busy schedule. Wheeler’s daily routine would consist of church, school, baseball, work for the academy, and then school work. He does all of it with a positive, fun loving attitude.  This makes each endeavor that much more worthwhile because it serves a greater purpose.

Wheeler is currently a senior at New Canaan High School and a Captain of the Varsity Baseball team. Serving as their starting Shortstop, Wheeler can play every other position on the field, as well as pitcher. This dynamic and versatile ability makes him so valuable to the Rams roster.  Clete can do it all above the level of an average high school player.  His Head Coach, Anthony Bloss has this to say, “Clete is one of our 4 captains and has been a leader both on and off the field. He leads by example and takes ownership of his performances. His teammates respond to him in a positive way, and he is always smiling and encouraging.” 

Wheeler started this journey back in Utah as a first grader when he initially picked up the glove and bat for the first time. His development and passion for baseball has only grown with each passing year no matter the state he was in. Wheeler joined the NC Select Rams when the family moved to CT and immediately integrated himself into the program. The then 11 year old Wheeler would become a main stead of New Canaan baseball as well as our own Fury baseball program for many years.

Wheeler has trained with Coach Frank Ramppen of Ramp3 Baseball at the Academy, on top of all the teams through the years.  He credits a great deal of his development to the years spent in the cages with Frank honing in and making the adjustments necessary to improve his game. Frank had this to say, “Clete is so deserving to have been chosen as athlete of the month.  He has been my hardest working student over the last 6 years and has developed into a great player. He trained 2-3 times a week throughout the year, regardless of his busy schedule but that is such a small part of the big picture.  Clete is one of the greatest young men I have ever had the pleasure to meet. He has accomplished so many things in his young life but most importantly exemplifies how a young man should behave.  I have never seen Clete in a bad mood.  His infectious smile and kind, energetic personality are so consistent, so uplifting and so present. I can’t wait to see how many more great things he does in his life and how many people he will make better around him along the way.  Congrats Clete!!!”

Wheeler has and continues to be multi dimensional as an athlete and as a person. His athletic endeavors prior to his junior year was that of being a football player and a wrestler as well. Two sports that take unwavering commitment, breed a brotherhood mentality and build your character as an individual. Wheeler is a 3-time state champion for football, twice in Utah and once here in Connecticut with New Canaan. He is just as dominant in the classroom as he is on the wrestling mat, on the football field or on the diamond. Wheeler maintains a 3.7 GPA and plans to major in finance at Brigham Young University in Utah this upcoming fall. But, what is likely the most defining part of who Wheeler is an athlete, a student, and as a person is his religious backing as a devout Mormon. It is such an integral part of his everyday life but he plans on serving a church mission for The Church Of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints after his freshman year of college to help spread the word of Mormonism.

If you have the pleasure of having Clete Wheeler in your life in any capacity, you are likely better off for it. There is some impact and lasting mark from your interactions with Wheeler.  He embodies what we hope all of our athletes can and will be in whatever endeavor they choose to put time and effort into.  We couldn’t be more proud and excited to be able to award him this honor and recognize Clete Wheeler as not just an athlete but as an individual. Looking forward to seeing what he can accomplish in the future as we know great things are on the horizon.

Hannah Murray – First County Bank Athlete of the Month

Hannah Murray – First County Bank Athlete of the Month


Our First County Bank Athlete of the Month for March 2021 is Hannah Murray.  Murray is a fourteen year old 8th grader who attends Greenwich Academy. A veteran of Bobby Valentine’s, she is a hard working and dedicated athlete.  Hannah is constantly working to improve her craft as well as her athleticism. Her diligence to being her best is not limited to the cage or the field as she excels in the classroom as well. Murray is well on her way to becoming an impressive student-athlete at the high school level. Which only helps exemplify and confirm her selection as FCB Athlete of the Month.

“A coach’s dream!!!” – Danielle Simoneau

Her long time instructor Danielle Simoneau, is the director of our Lady Titans program.  Danielle had this to say of Hannah, “Hard working, enthusiastic, and always with a smile! A coach’s dream!!!” This can truly be felt as a spectator outside any of her lessons, practices, or games.

Murray’s desire and interest in softball came from the time spent at her brother Zach’s baseball games. She started off playing baseball as early as 4 years old and fell in love with the game. Murray picked up the game very quickly and her talents shined through. At 8 years old she played for Norwalk’s 8U Cal Ripken All-Star team, where she got to travel the state competing. She was the only girl on the team, which did not intimidate her at all, and even at the young age she was confident in her skills on the field.  Shortly after, Murray made the transition to the softball diamond, playing her first season with a Greenwich Parks and Recreation team. This is where she focused on mastering the fundamentals of the game and began her journey to be a great softball player.

“She puts in the work and always has her team’s back.” – Quianna Diaz Patterson

The next stop in her path was a stint with Tucci Lumber Elite. Here she continued to grow and develop as a player. The smaller details of the game became much more important. This only helped narrow her focus. Her most recent home is here with our Lady Titans. Her coach Quianna Diaz Patterson had this to say about her player, “Hannah’s hardworking, easily coachable, and an enthusiastic leader for her team. She puts in the work and always has her team’s back. You’ll never see her without a smile and her team can count on her fully. Totally deserving of player of the month!”

Entering her second season Murray continues to improve her skills and overall game play. Murray has been a more than solid pitcher and outfielder throughout her playing career so far. However, she has started to play first base to be more versatile and valuable to her team.  Most importantly and in Murray’s own words, “One thing I love about softball is all the amazing coaches and teammates I have met along the way. They help push me and get me closer to achieving my dream of playing in college each and every day.” Without any doubt, Murray’s coaches and teammates feel the same way she does.

“Totally deserving of player of the month!” – Coach Diaz Patterson


As mentioned earlier Murray is a force in the classroom as well. An honor roll student at Greenwich Academy with high expectations on herself. A class that she is passionate about and excels at is science, where for the year she is averaging an ‘A’. In addition, her passions extend to painting, doodling, and experimenting with recipes in her kitchen.  This allows her creative expression to take over and be free. One of her favorite things to do is play with her puppy, Albie Sassafras! Murray wants to work with children when she is older, either as a teacher or a pediatrician but also stay involved in the game.  Passing on her softball knowledge and experience to the next wave of superstars.

We here at BVSA are extremely proud and so happy to be able to give Hannah this honor. The hard work in the cage, at practice, on the field, and especially in the classroom made this such an easy choice. Continue to work hard and make this place proud, big things are on the horizon. Everybody is very excited to see what the coming years have in store! Congratulations!