SPRINGFIELD, NJ – Dayton senior Joe Kastner will play one more football game before starting college at Farleigh Dickenson University when he represents Jonathan Dayton High School in Snapple Bowl XXIV this summer.
The game features Union County All-Stars against the Middlesex County All-Stars. Forty senior players were named to each team. Middlesex leads the series 14-9. Union won Snapple Bowl XXIII.
Kastner learned he was selected to the team a few weeks ago. He said, “It is an honor to play in the game and represent Jonathan Dayton High School and the Township of Springfield.” Of living in Springfield he said, “Everybody knows everybody. Things are straight forward and that makes it easy to have lots of friends.”
Lance Jacobs Supervisor of Athletics said, “Being selected as the Dayton representative participating in the Snapple Bowl is a great acknowledgment of all Joe's years of hard work and dedication to football.”
Head Football Coach Dominic Cuniglio said, “The best word to describe Joe is resilient. Joe has a great work ethic and it was really evident this past season. He began the season as our starting quarterback and was hurt in the first game. When he came back he was sharing the duties of the quarterback position while also playing cornerback. In the third game he hurt his elbow and was unable to throw. Rather than give up he worked himself back into shape and came back to play wide receiver. He earned the spot on the Union County team.”
Assistant Football Coach and Head Basketball Coach Robert Martin said, “Joe was one of our leaders on and off the field. He had a great summer in the weight room and it paid off this season. Joe threw for over 1,000 yards as a junior and was a 2 way player his senior year, playing receiver and defensive back. Joe is a competitor and we are proud to have coached him. This honor is well deserved.”
Joe Kastner was born in New Jersey and went through Springfield’s public school system. In high school, he lettered in three sports. Aside from football, he was the shooting guard on the basketball team and the pitcher of the baseball team. Kastner was a Captain of the football and basketball team and is a captain of the baseball team.
A good student, he made the honor roll several times. This year he is part of Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) and attended the State Leadership Conference in Atlantic City.
In football, Kastner earned a letter his junior and senior year. In the Snapple Bowl he will play wider receiver, which is not the position he first played for Dayton’s varsity team. During his junior year, he played quarterback and threw for almost 1,200 yards. He was going to be the starting quarterback his senior year, but he injured his throwing arm making on a defensive play in the third game. When he was able to return he was shifted the position of wide receiver and did well enough to be the Dayton senior to make the Bowl.
He received a varsity letter in basketball this year. As shooting guard, he played 19 games, made 25 field goals, 14 free throws and 32 three point shots.
This is his third season on Dayton’s varsity baseball team. He is a pitcher and lettered all three years. He will be playing baseball for Farleigh Dickinson at their Florham Park Campus. He plans to major in Sports Administration.
Baseball Coach Michael Abbate said, “Joe and his family have been a pleasure to get to know over the years. He is a great kid who deserves this honor and there is nobody that I would want to represent Dayton Athletics more than him.”
Kastner does not just play sports, he is also a fan. His favorite professional teams are the New York Giants, the New York Yankees and the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Snapple Bowl games benefit the Edison-based Lakeview School, which is a program of the New Jersey Institute for Disabilities, and the Children’s Specialized Hospital in Mountainside. Almost $600,000 has been raised with the last year’s game reaching a record $55,000.
At least one senior from every high school gets to play. Kastner is Dayton’s only representative this year. Last year three Dayton seniors played in a game Union County won. This year’s game will be played on Thursday, July 20, 2017 at Kean University at 7:00 p.m.