St. Edmund Prep’s New Hall of Fame Class

Newest inductees into the St. Edmund Prep High School Hall of Fame include (from left) Joe Burke, Diane Buono-Haslacher, Anthony Oglesby, Jalilissa Marcus, Dan Wiatre, Guy DeFonzo, Sarah Louison, Jeremy Louison, David Louison, and Andy Louison. They were joined by the 2003 Boys Varsity Basketball team. (Photo: Courtesy of St. Edmund Prep)

St. Edmund Prep H.S., Sheepshead Bay, hosted its Athletic Hall of Fame induction ceremony on April 27 at the Rockaway Hotel.

The Class of 2023 is the fifth-ever group of hall of famers to be recognized by the Eagles’ sports community. The following inductees make up the decorated class:

Diane Buono-Haslacher, 2002

Buono-Haslacher’s St. Edmund Prep athlet- ics career began the fall of her freshman year on the volleyball court, even though she had never played the sport before. This prepared her for her true passion: basketball.

As a four-year member and eventual team captain of the varsity basketball team, she helped lead the Eagles to the 2002 GCHSAA Brooklyn-Queens Division II title. In her career, she scored more than 1,000 points and was named to the Daily News All-City All-Star Girls Basketball Team in 2001. For her senior year, she was named St. Edmund’s Female Ath- lete of the Year.

She went on to play basketball at St. Thomas Aquinas College. Her full athletic scholarship at the time was the first for a St. Edmund female student-athlete in over 12 years.

Joseph Burke, 2001

Burke starred on the baseball diamond for the Eagles. The catcher still holds two impressive offensive records: hitting four home runs in a single game and tallying six hits in one game. He went on to earn All-American honors at Nassau Community College.

He then earned a scholarship to St. John’s University, Jamaica, where he was a back-to-back All-Big East Conference selection. The Johnnies won the Big East Tournament in 2005 and appeared in the NCAA Tournament. That same year, the New York Yankees selected Burke in the 18th round of the MLB Draft.

He played seven professional baseball seasons and finished with a career batting average of .280. After winning two titles with the Somerset Patriots of the Atlantic League, Burke was named to the league’s All-Decade Team.

Jalilissa Marcus, 2013

In just two years with the Eagles, Marcus’ accolades as a track-and-field student-athlete are almost too long to list. As a gifted runner and long jumper, she was a New York State finalist in both indoor and outdoor track as a junior and senior in a variety of distances. With long jump being her top event, she qualified for every major invitational meet during her high school tenure.

She still holds the GCHSAA indoor long jump record while also being a 10-time finalist in the Colgate Women’s Games. She was a long jump All-American and competed at the Nike Indoor Nationals. She earned a full athletic scholarship to Bethune-Cookman University.

Marcus now is a behavior specialist with the Volusia County School District in Orlando, Fla. She is also the head track coach at Port Orange Atlantic H.S. and recently took home Gatorade Coach of the Year honors.

Anthony Oglesby, 1998

Oglesby is widely considered to be the first top male student-athlete in school history. After transferring in as a sophomore, he quickly established himself on the basket- ball court. He owns the distinction of being the first CHSAA All-League player in St. Edmund Prep history.

He continued his hoops career at the University of New Hampshire and later Plymouth State University. He received his degree in business administration.

Oglesby has carved out a career of nearly two decades in managing and operating health clubs. He currently owns two All Out Fitness locations: one in New Hampshire and one in Connecticut. He is also a member of the St. Edmund Prep Board of Trustees.

2003 Boys’ Varsity Basketball Team

Coached by Brian Mullen, this Eagles squad turned in a dominant season, finishing 20-8 to claim the CHSAA ‘A’ division regular season title as well as the intersectional ‘A’ city championship over rival Cardinal Hayes H.S.

Chris Bernard and Matt Irwin paced St. Edmund’s backcourt, with a supporting cast featuring Barry Brown, Shane Gauvard, and Joe Romano. Andy Louison and Matthew DeCostanzo provided the grunt work in the front court to round out the team.

Bernard and Irwin were recognized as All-CHSAA and named as honorable mention selections to the New York Post’s All-City Team. The team still gets together to talk about their run, as well as the team’s city championship win on the junior varsity level in 2001.

Dan Wiatre

For the past 27 years, Wiatre has been part of the fabric of the St. Edmund Prep community. The Mill Basin native is a teacher in the math department, the school’s athletic director, and the boys’ varsity basketball coach. He is one of the longest tenured and winningest coaches in the CHSAA, with 218 wins and counting.

Wiatre attended St. Thomas Aquinas Ele- mentary School, Flatlands, and Nazareth H.S., East Flatbush, where he was a three-sport varsity athlete in football, basketball, and baseball. He went on to play basketball at Concordia College and then Adelphi University.

As athletic director, Wiatre has introduced new sports teams to the school while also enhancing the overall experience for Eagles student-athletes. He comes from a long tradition of athletics in his family, with his younger brother, Rob, already a member of the St. Edmund Prep Athletics Hall of Fame.

The Louison Family: Andy, 2003; Jeremy, 2008; David, 2011; Sarah, 2012

The basketball journey of the four Louison children began on the iconic green floor of St. Thomas Aquinas parish. It was here that the family learned of the academic and athletic tradition of St. Edmund Prep.

All four children played all four years of bas- ketball at the Prep. Andy was the co-captain of his team and routinely returns to his high school alma mater to speak to the student body. Jeremy was the first Black Student Body President and serves as an adviser on best stu- dent social practices.

David captained his team and was the president of the National Honor Society before suiting up for St. Joseph’s University Brooklyn, Clinton Hill. Sarah also was a team captain and served as a freshman mentor and Emmaus retreat leader.

Guy DeFonzo

Given his long career and dedication to Brooklyn sports, DeFonzo was recognized as an honorary inductee among this year’s Hall of Fame class. He’s a product of Catholic ed- ucation, having attended Resurrection School, Gerritsen Beach; Xaverian H.S., Bay Ridge; and St. Francis College, Brooklyn Heights.

For nearly three decades, DeFonzo, a retired NYPD sergeant, held leadership positions among youth sports organizations in Brooklyn, most notably the director of the St. Thomas Aquinas Sports Association. Assisted by his wife, Sheila, of 36 years and their four children, he ensured community children had a safe, engaging place to play sports and develop as young people.

One of the highlights of his career was bringing back the renowned Msgr. King Memorial Basketball Tournament to St. Thomas. Since the tournament’s return, St. Edmund Prep has been a regular participant, and teams from all of the East Coast head to Flatlands to experience the history and atmosphere of one of the top holiday high school basketball tournaments in the country.

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