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Massachusetts Maritime's Brody Calvert and MCLA's Elizabeth Brown earned post-season honors for their squads this fall.

Local Athletes Earn League Honors with College Teams

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Lee High School graduate Elizabeth Brown was named to the all-Massachusetts State College Athletic Conference first team this fall.
 
Brown, a sophomore at MCLA, led the Trailblazers in digs, with 3.27 per set, and was third on the team in kills with 2.29 per set.
 
She played in all 26 of MCLA's matches, starting 25, and had a season-high 18 kills in a five-set loss to Westfield State.
 
Brown was named second-team all-league last fall after her first season at MCLA.
 
Her former Lee teammate and current MCLA teammate MaKayla Schuerer appeared in 15 matches for MCLA (21-5) in her first year on the squad. Schuerer finished with 23 digs.
 
For the MCLA men's soccer team this fall, Reynaldo Castro (Taconic), David Kankam (Pittsfield) and Avery Manzolini (Monument Mountain) tied for the team lead with four goals apiece.
 
Benjamin Bonso (Berkshire Arts and Technology) had two assists in 15 games for the Trailblazers (5-7-3). MCLA's squad also included Mount Greylock alum Tyler Canata, Hoosac Valley's Jacob Richardson and McCann Tech's Jack Cooper and Michael Harris.
 
MCLA's women's soccer team got contributions from five local student-athletes.
 
Wahconah graduate and MCLA sophomore Eva Eberwein saw the majority of time in the Trailblazers' goal, stopping 133 shots for an .806 save percentage. Eberwein also finished the year with a goal and an assist.
 
Camryn Belilse (McCann Tech) finished with four goals for MCLA (3-9-3). Hoosac Valley's Tia Kareh and Taconic's Jenna Bateman each played in all 15 MCLA games, starting 13 and 12, respectively. Kareh and Bateman each and assist for the Trailblazers. McCann Tech's Addison Hayer also had an assist; she played eight games this fall, starting three.
 
At Westfield State, Wahconah graduate and Owls senior Michaella Moncecchi made three appearances in goal this fall, compiling a .750 save percentage and helping Westfield State (13-7-1) win the MASCAC Championship. McCann Tech grad Isabella LaCasse appeared in six games this fall at Westfield State.
 
Drury graduate Kayla McGrath scored a team-high eight goals as a sophomore this fall to help the Springfield College women's soccer team go 8-5-6 with a run to the NEWMAC semi-finals.
 
Salem State sophomore Huda Ngoynkulu (Mount Everett) finished with a goal in 15 games this fall for the Vikings (4-12-2). She is joined at Salem State by fellow Eagle Maggie Sarnacki, who saw the field in six contests.
 
Wahconah graduate Brody Calvert was named the MASCAC's co-Rookie of the Year after scoring 11 goals and finishing second in the conference in scoring for Massachusetts Maritime (4-11-2). He also passed out a couple of assists, and his 11 goals is the most ever by a first-year player for the Buccaneers.
 
Caleb Besaw (Drury) appeared in 10 games this fall for the Castleton State men's soccer team, starting twice for the Spartans, who finished with a record of 4-11-3.
 
Pittsfield High graduate Kellie Harrington finished 10t at teh Northeast Conference Championships to lead the Stonehill College women to the first league title in school history. Harrington covered the 5-kilometer course in 19 minutes, 9.1 seconds and was named to the all-NEC team for Stonehill.
 
St. Michael's College senior Abby Kittler (Pittsfield) recorded a personal record in finishing 41st and scoring for the Knights in their sixth-place finish at the NCAA Division II East Regional Championships. It was St. Michael's best finish since 2014 at the 21-team event.
 
Pittsfield High graduate Kieran Coscia played in nine games this fall on the offensive line for the Bucknell University football team (4-7).
 
At Westfield State, Wahconah High graduate Ryan Scott appeared in two games in his first campaign for the Owls. He completed one of his three passes for 14 yards and ran once for three yards.
 
Framingham State senior Gwendolyn Carpenter (Mount Everett) is averaging 11 points per game in five starts for the Rams (5-0).
 
At Springfield College, senior Riley Robinson (Hoosac Valley) has appeared in all six games for the Pride, averaging 19 minutes per game and helping Springfield get off to a 5-1 start this winter.
 
Robinson's fellow former Hurricane, Sharaya Keele is averaging eight minutes per game in four appearances for Albertus Magnus (4-3).
 
In the Division I ranks, former Monument Mountain standout Dion Brown is averaging 14 points per game and a team-best 5.8 rebounds per game as a sophomore in six starts at the University of Maryland-Baltimore County (3-3). 
 
At Florida International, Mohamed Sanogo (Taconic) is averaging 5.7 ppg and 4.0 rebounds per game coming off the bench. He also has four blocks for the Panthers (1-6), who host Kennesaw State on Sunday in a game set to be telecast on ESPN-plus.
 
Hoosac Valley graduate Carson Meczywor has started all four games so far at UMass-Boston, averaging 6.8 points per game and passing out five assists for the Beacons, who were 1-3 prior to hosting Tufts on Saturday afternoon.
 
If you know a college student-athlete from a Berkshire County high school who should be included in an upcoming College Collage, please email sports@iberkshires.com
If you would like to contribute information on this article, contact us at info@iberkshires.com.

How can women bridge the retirement gap?

Submitted by Edward Jones

March 8 is International Women's Day, a day for celebrating all the accomplishments of women around the globe. But many women still need to make up ground in one key area: retirement security.

Women's challenges in achieving a secure retirement are due to several factors, including these:

  • Pay gap – It's smaller than it once was, but a wage gap still exists between men and women. In fact, women earn, on average, about 82 cents for every dollar that men earn, according to the Census Bureau. And even though this gap narrows considerably at higher educational levels, it's still a source of concern. Women who earn less than men will likely contribute less to 401(k) plans and will ultimately see smaller Social Security checks.
  • Longer lives – At age 65, women live, on average, about 20 more years, compared to almost 17 for men, according to the Social Security Administration. Those extra years mean extra expenses. 
  • Caregiving responsibilities – Traditionally, women have done much of the caregiving for young children and older parents. And while this caregiving is done with love, it also comes with financial sacrifice. Consider this: The average employment-related costs for mothers providing unpaid care is nearly $300,000 over a lifetime, according to the U.S. Department of Labor — which translates to a reduction of 15 percent of lifetime earnings. Furthermore, time away from the workforce results in fewer contributions to 401(k) and other employer-sponsored retirement plans.

Ultimately, these issues can leave women with a retirement security deficit. Here are some moves that can help close this gap:

  • Contribute as much as possible to retirement plans. Try to contribute as much as you can afford to your 401(k) or similar employer-sponsored retirement plan. Your earnings can grow tax deferred and your contributions can lower your taxable income. (With a Roth 401(k), contributions aren't deductible, but earnings and withdrawals are tax free, provided you meet certain conditions.) At a minimum, contribute enough to earn your employer's matching contribution, if one is offered, and try to boost your contributions whenever your salary goes up. If you don't have access to a 401(k), but you have earned income, you can contribute to an IRA. Even if you don't have earned income, but you have a spouse who does, you might be eligible to contribute to a spousal IRA.
  • Maximize Social Security benefits. You can start taking Social Security at 62, but your monthly checks will be much bigger if you can afford to wait until your full retirement age, which will be around 66½. If you are married, you may want to coordinate your benefits with those of your spouse — in some cases, it makes sense for the spouse with the lower benefits to claim first, based on their earnings record, and apply for spousal benefits later, when the spouse with higher benefits begins to collect.
  • Build an emergency fund. Try to build an emergency fund containing up to six months' worth of living expenses, with the money kept in a liquid account. Having this fund available will help protect you from having to dip into your retirement accounts for large, unexpected costs, such as a major home or car repair.

It's unfortunate, but women still must travel a more difficult road than men to reach retirement security. But making the right moves can help ease the journey.

 

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