NORTH CALDWELL, NJ – Recently, four West Essex High School students, who are coincidently all from Fairfield, signed their letters of intent to play sports in college at a recent signing ceremony held at the high school. They include Monica Onorata, who will play softball at TCNJ; Erin Keegan, who will play volleyball for Rowan University; Jonathan Agolia, who will play football for Montclair State University; and Michael Panzarino, who will wrestle for Kutztown University.
West Essex Athletic Director Anthony Minnella congratulated all of the athletes for continuing to play their sport in college.
"Congratulations to all of you on a great high school career," he told the student athletes and their families and coaches at several signing ceremonies.
Minnella also told the students that he was "excited" that many of them would be continuing their athletic careers in their respective sports in college and wished them all successful futures. .
“Monica is the type of player and teammate that is a coach's dream,” said West Essex Girls Varsity Softball Coach Andrea Mondadori. “She can fill any role on the team that's needed, is selfless and puts the team before her own personal gain/stats.”
The West Essex softball team closed the season with a record of 16-9.
“Erin was a great all-around player and a true leader on the court,” said Mondadori, who is also the West Essex varsity girls volleyball coach. “She's a great athlete who had a true understanding of the sport and excelled under pressure. It is so fun to watch her play.”
This year, the West Essex football team had a record of 6-5, with Agolia being named a semi-finalist in the North 2 Group 3 state tournament.
"Jonathan was always a player with tremendous physical talent and fortunately for us he put it all together this past year to have an outstanding senior season,” said West Essex Varsity Football Coach Chris Benacquista. “John is peaking at the right time and I believe he will have an outstanding career at Montclair State."
The wrestling team finished the season with a record of 14-6, and Panzarino took second in the county, second in the district, and fourth in the Region.
“Michael was a great leader for us and has had a great career here at West Essex,” said West Essex Varsity Wrestling Coach Greg Ruggiero. “He was Captain as a junior and senior and always led by example. I am very proud of him and all of his accomplishments and think he will do very well in college.”