Class of 1947
Many of us remember Mike D’Alessandro as the history teacher who instilled in his students a love of Collingswood. During the fall, if you were a student in one of his classes, his weekly Friday/ Monday combos were legend. He would place a chart on the board on Friday which showed the win/loss comparison between Collsand our weekly opponent. Of course, Collingswood usually held the lead in wins in many of those series rivalries which stretched back many years. On Mondays, following the Saturday games, he would show diagrams of how the touchdowns were scored so that the Colls could (in most cases) go on to victory! What many may have not appreciated at the time was that Mike D’Alessandro lived this history!
Although relatively small in stature, he played the position of two-way tackle during both his junior and senior football seasons. He also played on the special teams. His teams were successful winning Group IV Championships in both his junior year (1945) and senior year (1946). As a senior co-captain, Mike earned 1st team All-Group IV honors as well as 1st team All
South Jersey honors. A graduate of Glassboro State (Rowan), Mike went on to coach and teach at Collingswood
for over 30 years. While he has decidedly left his mark in the annals of Colls sports history as an athlete, he has also left a lasting mark on all of the Collingswood students who were privileged to call him teacher and coach!
ADRIENE STOY DABBENIGO
Class of 1976
Adrienne was an exceptional Varsity Letter winner in field hockey and lacrosse. In field hockey she was a 3-year starter under Coach Bea Markwick, and led as team captain and MVP in 1975. Individual awards in hockey included 1st team ASJ,
1st Team All Group III, 1st All Colonial Conference, and WIBG Radio “Athlete of the Week” in 1975. Adrienne was instrumental in three field hockey Colonial Conference Championships (’73, ’74, ’75), and 1975 Courier Post Cup for #1 SJ hockey team. She also won the CHS Outstanding Achievement Award in 1975-1976. She expresses great gratitude to have been part of the winning tradition of CHS girls sports embodied by motivating coaches and inspirational teammates.
Adrienne went on to earn a BS Degree at the College of New Jersey. She and husband Pete are proud parents of daughters Dana, Amanda, and Alyssa.
Class of 1990
Darren was a standout five-varsity letter winner in football and track, who also participated in basketball during his sophomore year. In football he earned the Brooks-Irvine Scholar Athlete Award and John Sohanchak Memorial Scholarship. He also earned All Colonial Conference and All Group II honors. In track, he was an All Colonial Conference selection and set a school record for the 110 meter high hurdles in 1990. He further distinguished himself academically as member of National Honor Society and other extracurricular school activities. Wallace often relives the hard fought, heartbreaking loss in football to Woodbury 21-20 that otherwise spoiled an undefeated season. He also pays special tribute to football coach Bob Barikian for support in many ways during his athletic career including rides to and from practices. Darren went on to earn a BA in Computer Information Science at Fordham University. He and wife Tasha are proud parents of young children Olivia and Preston.
BETH DiGIAMARINO RODGERS
Class of 1991
Beth excelled as a player and leader in earning three Varsity letters in soccer and two letters in softball. As a charter member of the girls soccer team, Beth recalls persevering through early years of tough losses, but keeping faith with a positive attitude shared by her teammates. She vividly recalls playing West Deptford in the first ever CHS Girls Soccer playoff game where she made a great defensive play that foiled a game tying goal with less than one minute on the clock resulting in a historic
win. Beth extends special thanks for inspiration from softball and soccer coach Doug Schmitt who gave a “five foot nothing” incentive to grow. Following her senior season, Beth earned 1st team Group II team honors and was also named
to the 2nd team ASJ.
Class of 1992
Gerry was a star Varsity Letter winner in football and baseball. In baseball, he was named 1st team All Colonial Conference as well as being an All Group II selection who also had the honor of participating in the Carpenter Cup as an Infielder. That football season he was 7th leading scorer in SJ with 102 points and over 1,500 yards rushing. His 1991 gridiron team was undefeated (9-0) Colonial Conference Champs; Gerry’s final-seconds, come-from-behind touchdown against Haddonfield was well remembered for preserving the perfect season and title. Following the 1991 football season, he was named to the 1st Team All Colonial Conference and 1stTeam All Group II squads, and was a 2nd Team ASJ selection by both the Courier-Post and Philadelphia Inquirer newspapers. Gerry went on to Rutgers and Temple Universities earning a BA in Economics
and a MBA in Finance. He and wife Kimberly are proud parents of children Julia and Jackson.
ALEXANDRA FINIO HANDZA
Class of 1993
Alex was a leader of the tennis team earning four varsity letters as #1 women’s singles player for four years. She was a
repeat recipient of All Colonial Conference, All Group II and All South Jersey honors. Following her 1993 senior season,
Alex was named the South Jersey Player of the Year—the highest honor awarded a high school tennis player. Alex attributes much of her life’s success to the strong foundation provide by Collingswood teachers and specifically her tennis Coach, Ms. Mary Baldwin. She further distinguished herself academically as member of National Honor Society and served as Student Council VP. Alexandra received a tennis scholarship to Lafayette College graduating with a BA in History and Government & Law earning Magna Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa honors. While competing at Lafayette, Alex was awarded College Player of the Year. She and husband Jason are proud parents of daughter Nicolette.
Class of 1995
When Glen Ambrosius finished his outstanding athletic career at CHS, he had earned 11 letters— three in football and four each in basketball and baseball. Post-season honors in football included being named to 1st Team All- Group and 1st Team ASJ; in basketball, Glen was named Honorable Mention All-Group II in both his junior and Senior years; and in baseball, he was named to the 1st Team Colonial Conference, 1st Team All-Group II, and 1st Team ASJ. While a student at CHS, Glen was member of both the National Honor Society and the Student Council. Glen is a graduate of The University of Pennsylvania where he received a B.A. in Psychology and a minor in Communications. Glen has fond memories of Friday night football games and of winning the Colonial Conference Championship in baseball during his junior year. Glen’s older brother, Jim, was inducted into the CHS Athletic HOF in 2010. Married to Donna, they are the parents of a 10 year old son, Colin.
Class of 1996
Karen was a highly memorable 3-sport athlete earning 12 Varsity letters in soccer, basketball, and lacrosse squads. In
soccer, she earned 1st team All-Conference and All-Group honors and was named to the 2nd team ASJ. Additionally,
she received All-State recognition. In basketball, she was named to the 1st team All-Group and scored 1055 pts, hitting the 1000 point milestone with a 3-pointer which she recalls may have been the only 3-point shot she ever made. She treasures
unending support from her Mom and Dad, and fondly recalls a sport reporter’s comment that she was “the best player that no one ever heard of.” Karen notes that her competitive spirit was at its highest when playing rival Haddonfield especially when they won. She further distinguished herself academically as member of National Honor Society. Karen went on to receive a BS degree from Drew College where she continued her sports career. She and husband Ky are happily still living in the South Jersey area.
SUE GLASER TRACEY
Class of 1972
Sue joins her sisters, Bonnie and Lori, as well as her mother, Ginny, and uncle, Donald “Dee” Douglass, as a HOF Inductee. While a student at CHS, Sue lettered in Field Hockey and Lacrosse and was awarded the Silver Medal upon graduation.
Following her graduation from Glassboro State (Rowan), Sue began her teaching and coaching career. Among her fondest memories of her coaching days at Collingswood are her 7th and 8th grade Lacrosse teams which numbered over 100 girls which she coached with no assistance. Moving on to Moorestown Friends School, Sue initiated the Fencing Program
which she would go on to coach successfully for six years. During her tenure, her teams won six Individual District Championships, three Individual State Championships, three District Squad Championships, and four Foil Squad State
Championships. Her son Douglass, a member of two of her District winning Saber Squads, was also a two-time Individual State Saber Champion. Sue was also the 1st woman to serve as a Boys’ Lacrosse coach for the Medford Black Storm team. While an assistant coach for the Middle School team, her team had an undefeated season. Sue has authored a book, Fun Fitness for Kids and is a nationally ranked Veteran Saber Fencer. Sue and her husband, Michael, currently reside in Cape May where she runs a successful personal fitness business.
1966 Colonial Conference Co-Championship Wrestling Team
The 1966 Wrestling Team, coached by Hall of Famer, Sam Coursen, tied with Paulsboro for the Colonial Conference Championship title with a record of 11 wins, 1 loss, and 1 tie. A highlight of the season was the Sterling match when both the Varsity and Junior Varsity swept their matches. The team included two District Champions and another who went undefeated in Dual Meets.
1969 Colonial Conference Championship Boys’ Tennis Team
Coached by the legendary Chester “Chet” Olinger, the 1969 Boys’ Tennis Team captured the Colonial Conference title with a record of 10 wins and 2 losses. In addition, when challenged by Moorestown Friend’s team to determine the best team in Camden & Burlington counties, the Panthers rose to the occasion, besting their opponent by the score of 4-1.
1969 Colonial Conference Championship Field Hockey Team
The 1969 Colonial Conference Championship in Field Hockey was won by Collingswood High. Coached by the late Bea Markwick and Barbara Friedrich (Duus), the team finished the season with a record of 9 wins, 0 losses, and 3 ties.
Seven players received First and Second Team Colonial Conference post-season honors.
1969 Group III Championship Football Team
Coached by the late Jack Ridinger, the 1969 Football Team produced a fine record closing out the season with a record of 7 wins and 2 losses. After losing the first game of the season, the Panthers re-grouped and set about beating Sterling, Audubon, Paulsboro, Haddon Township, and Woodbury. They also defeated rival Woodrow Wilson and shut-out Cherry Hill East, who was at the time ranked 2nd in the state, defeating them 21-0.The team was ranked 9th best Team by the Courier-Post and 12th Best in the Delaware Valley by Dunkel Football Index.