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Club Basketball Led by Recent Graduate

By Andrew Smith

Campus Recreation offers several great experiences for our students. These offerings range from a gym with many unique activities, outdoor fields and the ability to play on a competitive team with their peers. Club sports are an excellent opportunity for students to continue the sport of their choice and still play in a live setting and make new friends along the way. Our Club Basketball Team is led by an Adelphi graduate Paul Bevinetto who hopes to keep carrying on the legacy that he enjoyed.

Head Coach Paul Bevinetto was an active member in Campus Recreation as a student and hopes to continue to grow and promote it. Photo by Paul Bevinetto

Bevinetto graduated in May 2023 with a bachelor’s degree in sport management and a minor in psychology. He now works for the New York Mets as a ticket sales representative. While at Adelphi, Bevinetto was an active student in campus recreation. He served as vice president of the Club Basketball Team in 2023 and was even the first-ever club sports assistant. In this role, he was in charge of all club sports on campus and worked closely with graduate assistants and the Director of Campus Recreation.

Bevinetto took the job as head coach in August 2023 because he “wanted to be a part of the team that has given me so much as my college career went on. I want to be able to give back to the team, as well as campus recreation, in any way I can,” he said.

When reflecting on his goals as a coach, Bevinetto said, “By being the coach, I feel I can also educate and mentor some of the kids on this team, as I was during my journey with the team as a player. I hope to help this team win multiple games, help every player become a better man and player, and help elevate this team to reach the NCCBA championship.”

Blake Pomerantz, a junior sport management major who is entering his second season on the team, expressed why he joined the team and what has encouraged him to stick with it. “I joined club basketball because I saw how everyone treated one another like family. I wanted to get involved more on campus by doing something I have enjoyed doing my whole life,” he said.

Coach Bevinetto centers his practices on the team's struggles in their previous game. For example, if the Panthers got beat on the free throw line, he would take time in practice to clean up those mistakes. “I always want my players to be able to run and be exhausted at the end of practice. It lets me know that I am making them work hard and that they are earning their playing time as well as increasing their potential,” he said.

Generally, the schedule consists of league games that are played here on campus and at visiting schools. This season, the Panthers will travel to Fairfield, Sacred Heart and Wesleyan for some of the marquee matchups of the season. The Panthers have been holding scrimmages against Hofstra and Columbia to prepare for their season opener on Nov. 9 against Iona in the Center for Recreation and Sport (CRS).

The scheduling process is quite different from that of a varsity team. In club sports, the e-board or the coach has to contact other schools personally to set up a match or a scrimmage. This can be a challenging process but is well worth the effort when students can continue to play the sport they love and make new friends.

“In my opinion, students should be inclined to participate in club sports as it helps students connect with others around them and provides them with a sense of community and belonging, allowing them to make new friends and connections,” Bevinetto said.

“I’ve met multiple people who I consider my close friends and I always look forward to having a great time during practices and games. I put all my trust and hope in my teammates, as we’ve already had a successful start to the season,” Pomerantz added.

Student leaders are not always found in the classroom. Recreational sports can bring out the best in someone and can encourage them to take on a leadership position they might have never been interested in. “Being a part of club sports helps students mature and grow as they learn how to be a team player, become a leader, and other essentials that are needed in both personal and professional lives,” Bevinetto said. “We are resilient, hardworking, and we will always put up a fight and make you work to beat us.”

Keep an eye out for home games and cheer on your fellow peers at the CRS and also follow their Instagram page @auclubbasketball for schedule and team updates.

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