Mahopac resident Antonio Giannico was a starting halfback on Stepinac’s varsity football team. Stepinac fell to Cardinal Hayes in the CHSFL ‘AAA” championship game but won the state championship during a perfect season in 2015.
How old were you when you started playing football and how did you get started?
I started playing football when I was 5 years old. My family was a huge influence on how I started, between my father and my grandfather.
What kind of work and commitment do you feel goes into being a successful athlete?
To be a successful athlete, I believe you have to prepare yourself not only physically but mentally. During the off-season I’m training six days a week, two times a day. Preparation is key in becoming a successful athlete.
Reflecting on this past season, how do you feel about the team’s performance? Have you learned anything?
The team’s performance was incredible throughout the entire season — everyone’s effort was honorable. I learned that when adversity hits, you have to keep going and find a way to overcome that obstacle.
What is your favorite team activity, pregame or postgame ritual that you share with your teammates?
Definitely postgame when we play this one song in the locker room and we all go crazy. It’s something I’ll remember from my Stepinac experience.
Who has been your biggest role model over the years and what have you learned from them?
My parents. I learned from them what hard work truly is and that you can achieve anything with it.
Tell us one thing about yourself that not a lot of people know?
I like to draw.
Do you plan on continuing to play football in college? If yes, where are you going and why did you select that school?
Yes, I plan on continuing my football career. I’m not sure where I will be playing next year but I will be making my decision after the season or in February.
Do you know what you want to study in college? If yes, what and why?
I want to study business and finance in college and become a financial advisor. Reason being is because I enjoy math and money so they go hand in hand.
Who is your favorite professional athlete and pro or college sports team?
Adrian Peterson. (My favorite) professional team is the New York Giants and college team is Virginia Tech.
What is your favorite music to listen to warming up for a game?
If you could have one super power, what would it be and why?
Definitely super strength because who wouldn’t want that!
If you could pick one place to visit on vacation that you’ve never been to, where would you go and why?
The Dominican Republic because everyone I know that went there said it was the best vacation they’ve ever been on.
What is your favorite food to eat before or after a game?
Before a game is a Texas BBQ (chicken cutlet, pepper jack cheese and BBQ sauce).
Best place to eat in Mahopac and why?
J.P. Cunningham’s because they have the the best wings in town and it’s a great location.
Facebook, Twitter or Instagram? Why?
Twitter because many more people are on it and it’s a good way to communicate with friends.
For a young athlete growing up in Mahopac, what would you tell them about the experience of being part of the football program?
Growing up in Mahopac and playing Mahopac Youth Football was some of the best times of my life. I met really great friends throughout the years and built bonds that will last a lifetime.