Wheelchair Sports Federation | Adaptive Sports Organization
1st Annual New York Rollin’ Knicks Wheelchair Basketball Tournament Print E-mail
Written by John Hamre   

The #1 Wheelchair Basketball Team in the United States hosted their Inaugural Wheelchair Basketball Tournament at LaGuardia Community College in Long Island City NY on Saturday March 18 and Sunday March 19, 2018.  With 3 Division 1 Teams, NY Rollin Knicks, Medstar NRH Punishers, Toronoto Rapters and the top Division 2 Team in the US, the Nassau Kings, the adaptive athletes competed at the highest level that wheelchair basketball can offer.


All the Teams are preparing for their run at the National Championship in Louisville KY in April 2018 - https://www.nwba.org/2018nwbt


The NY Knicks came out on top with the Medstar NRH Punishers coming in second and the Toronto Raptors taking third.  The Nassau Kings and NY Rollin Knicks played a competitive exhibition game since they are in two different divisions.

Congratulations on a great Tournament and the Wheelchair Sports Federation would like to thank our dedicated volunteers, James and Jeremy Tantsits, Joanna Nieh, Zak Ivkovic and the CUNY staff, All-American Deli & Bagel Company and a special thanks to Kevin Grant who did a great job as Tournament Director.  We all look forward to seeing everyone next year and if you'd like to see the NY Rollin Knicks and the Dallas Wheelchair Mavericks play for the National Wheelchair Basketball Championship in 2017 - Click Here - https://www.nwba.org/

Last Updated on Saturday, 24 March 2018 22:17
Team USA Sled Hockey Gets a Golden Hat Trick Print E-mail
Written by Josh Eisenberg   


Team USA celebrates on the Ice following the 2-1 Victory for gold against Canada – March 18, 2018 PHOTO CREDIT: Michael A. Clubine 

GANGNEUNG, South Korea — In 1812, the Canadian forces tried to invade the USA, but after heavy damages to both militaries fighting the war, the United States navy was able to resist, even with heavy pressure. Fast forward to March 18, 2018. History repeated itself. The United States withheld an attack from a very good Canadian team led by Captain Greg Westlake. Team USA Sled Hockey, led by Captain Josh Pauls and Declan Farmer, took home the gold medal for the third straight Paralympic Games. The final score was 2-1 in OT.

For Team Canada, the home team wearing red with the white maple leaf, it was Dominic Larocque in goal looking across the ice at Steve Cash for Team USA. Both men had yet to let in a goal, all Paralympics long. However, there were two goals looming over the United States: the one in the Italy game, and the one that gave Canada the Championship in the World Cup.

Team USA would be without Defenseman Tyler Carron, who was suspended for the last game against Italy — disqualified at the end of the second period of that game due to abuse of an official. Also not dressed for the match was Defenseman Nikko Landeros, who was coming off a hat trick against Italy in the semi-finals. This meant that the USA would be starting Josh Pauls at Defense along with Billy Hanning Jr.

It was high noon at the Gangneung’s version of the O.K. Corral, the world was watching from the sidelines as this duel was about to take place between the two top seeds of the world. The puck was in the refs hands as the bell sounded. The official dropped the puck at center ice and it was on.

Canada won the opening face off. Both teams were clobbering each other with hard hits, but it was the Canadians who broke through with 2:54 left in the first period. It was Billy Bridges (6) who put the biscuit in the basket on a ricochet off the glove of Steve Cash, assisted by Ben Delaney and Liam Hickey. The Score was 1-0. It was the first deficit all tournament for the United States. This was also the closest lead for team Canada leaving the first period. The United States had no shots on goal in the first period of play. For Cash it was his first goal allowed since Sochi 2014. Rather than fold under pressure, Cash then went on to save everything that came his way and his teammates stood behind him.

“Steve Cash is the best player in the world,” said teammate Declan Farmer, “he kept us in the game… regardless.”

Canada was a team unlike the U.S. had never seen before, as much as the USA kept hitting them hard, and the northern lights of Canada still kept shining.

Team USA’s first Shot on goal came with 13:53 remaining in the second period. At 11:51 left in the second, Canada crashed into the net, and an official review was called. The crowd was getting anxious, chants of “CAN-A-DA!” vs. “U-S-A!” were percolating throughout Gangneung Hockey Centre and the question was: “was it a goal”? After much debate over the headphones, no. it was not. The score remained 1-0 in favor of Canada. That’s how the period would end as well, and the shots on goal were even at eight per team.

At the start of the third period, the in-arena announcers dared the audience to break the sound record in the arena, which was sitting at 108.1 Db. It was broken: 108.9 Db. They were ready. The puck dropped and together everyone was  blasted off toward hockey history.


With just over a minute remaining in the third, things got interesting, Canada’s #6 Rob Armstrong got the puck and shot on an empty net, cleared by the United States in favor of an extra player. It hit the pipe, and Team USA did not go gently into that good night. It was Princeton University Student and PyeongChang stand out Declan Farmer, with 38.7 seconds left, scoring with assists from Kevin McKee and Brody Roybal. The game was tied. We were headed to extra hockey.

Before the game, Declan’s Father Matt Farmer said how honored he is to have Declan as his son,

“We’re so proud of Declan. He’s taken around the world with his hockey and we’re so happy that he found his way in this sport.”

Declan responded,  “I couldn’t have gotten here without my parents, my brother, and they are huge part of how I got here. They drive me to practice when I was a little kid and making sacrifices by driving me to tournaments…so they are as much a part of this as I am.”

Was Papa Farmer ever so proud of his son after the match. In overtime, at the 48:30 mark, Declan received a pass from Josh Pauls and brought the gold home to the United States with one swing of the stick. It hit the back of the net. His second goal of the day and The United States Sled Hockey team stormed the ice. They had done it. Shades of Sochi, coming back from a deficit, going to overtime and winning the whole thing. Redemption for Team USA who have regained the #1  ranking in the world after losing it at this past World Cup.

As it turns out, when the puck hit the pipe, Coach Guy Gosselin nearly had what he called a, “Stage 9 plus heart attack”. He continued, “We kind of regrouped and went down the ice our guys did a nice job of going around the ice tonight.“

Now that the PyeongChang campaign is over and Canada went home with silver, their Captain Greg Westlake, who said this would be his final games, doesn’t know what the future holds. Whether he comes back is still up in the air.

“I have no idea man, but I’ll tell you the last few weeks here was the most fun I have ever had playing hockey and in the last three years. I’ll tell you I those guys, and I wish them all the best.”


For Team USA Sled Hockey the third time’s a charm, but for players like Forward Jack Wallace it’s beginner’s luck. When asked what a gold medal tastes like, he responded,

“I don’t know actually I bumped my tooth on it pretty hard and I was bleeding there for a second. But it tastes like the best thing in the world right now.”

Team USA standout Rico Roman stayed true to his word: “This is America’s gold,” he proclaimed as he held up the 10 pound golden orb, “I got real emotional out there with my teammates and the overall feeling of leaving it all on the ice, getting out there, sweating bleeding… you can see it on our jerseys. I mean, it was all left on the ice and it paid off when it needed to.”

Captain Josh Pauls, says he doesn’t know about playing again for Team USA, but if Team USA calls, he would think about coming back.

“I’m not thinking that far ahead because I wanna just celebrate with friends and family.”

The same can be said for Steve Cash who made certain that reporters know there is a big question mark on a possible Beijing 2022 visit, he said he’s, “Taking it day by day,” continuing, “That’s a question that I get a lot. And I’m just living in the moment right now.”

Brody Roybal, who going into the match with Canada was the overall points leader of the tournament, was named MVP of the Paralympics. As it turns out there was no points battle between Farmer and Roybal, as they were just there to have fun for Team USA,

“We’re just here to play our best for the USA, and we got what we came for. We’re just two guys on the ice having fun,” added Roybal.

There were signs all over the arena saying, “JS” in honor of their late head coach Jeff Sauer who died of Cancer last year suddenly. Some players believed that Jeff was in the building when Armstrong hit the pipe on the open net.  Whether or not Sauer was looking down from above is questionable. What is not, is that The United States can now claim once again that they are the best sled hockey team in the world.

PHOTOS CREDIT: Michael A. Clubine

Last Updated on Thursday, 03 May 2018 13:53
PyeongChang 2018 Closes with the Hope of Moving the World Print E-mail
Written by Candace Cable and Orge Castellano   

PYEONGCHANG, South Korea͢thirty years has passed since South Korea hosted the 1988 Summer Olympics and Paralympic Games, it was the first time both events were held in tandem bringing the Paralympic Games into the global spotlight. A lot of things have changed since that moment, the Games have become a global phenomenon, the 3rd largest sporting event, and it has provided a new light of opportunity to millions of disabled people across the world to play sports. The Paralympics bring billions of spectators every year and break records in every edition. The games have exceeded expectations on all fronts, surpassing previous ticket sales reaching over 320,531, breaking the most tickets sold for a Winter Games edition.

The farewell party didn’t disappoint, and like the opening ceremony it was filled with a good dosage of traditional Korean artistry from music, to poetry, to dancing and phenomenal visual effects. It was a historical timeline combining the ancient and the modern.

asset_SB6_8869_12249_ioc_2018-03-18_154014.jpgA German flag is waved during the Closing Ceremony for The Paralympic Winter Games, PyeongChang, South Korea, Sunday 18th March 2018. PHOTO CREDIT: Simon Bruty for OIS/IOC.

“Tonight is a celebration, a celebration that if you dare to dream, you must do your best to fulfil it.” said International Paralympic Committee president, Andrew Parsons, who charmingly engaged with the audience throwing a couple of sentences in perfect Korean.

The ceremony began with the athletes, flag bearers of each country parading into the arena to join the rest of their teammates. Arariyo, a 600-year-old folk song, stunned the audience with the simplicity and power of its drumming accompanied by a multitude of dancers flowing around the stadium in unison to the music. The highlights of the 10-day journey of joy and sorrow that Paralympians experienced here in Pyeongchang was screened for everyone to enjoy.

asset_SB5_0461_12243_ioc_2018-03-18_154024.jpgArtists perform during the Closing Ceremony of the XII Paralympic Winter Games in the PyeongChang Olympic Stadium. The Paralympic Winter Games, PyeongChang, South Korea, Sunday 18th March 2018. PHOTO CREDIT: Simon Bruty for OIS/IOC.

An essential piece of all closing ceremonies is the revealing of new athletes representatives to the IPC, and the awarding of the Whang Youn Dai Achievement Award to two paralympic athletes. This recognition is given in honour of the Dr. Whang Youn Dai, who is an advocate who has devoted her entire life to rehabilitation sport of Korean people with an impairment. This prestigious award represent all the Paralympic values: Determination, Courage, Inspiration and Equality. The award is given to the best athletes who exemplified the spirit of the games, this year it was the turn of New Zealand’s Alpine skier Adam Hall and Finnish Sini Pyy who is a Biathlon and Cross country para athlete

asset_JM1_0669_12357_ioc_2018-03-18_153944.jpgPresentation of the Whang Youn Dai Achievement Award to Adam Hall NZL and Sini Pyy FIN duringduring the Closing Ceremony for The Paralympic Winter Games, PyeongChang, South Korea, Sunday 18th March 2018. PHOTO CREDIT: Joel Marklund for OIS/IOC

The USA for the third consecutive time of the Winter Games came on top of the medal count with 36 medals in total, 13 gold, 15 silver and 8 bronze.

As the ceremony drew to a close, the show gave the world a chance to rejoice in its central theme “We Move the World” an opportunity to see how the winter festival transitions to the blossoming of the spring. It was a sincere moment of reflection, spring, as an element of farewell encouraging the spectators to march towards the world of coexistence. The flowers in full bloom were a symbol representing a new world that has already begun to change.

Declaring the 2018 Paralympics closed, International Paralympic Committee president, Andrew Parsons, said: “Paralympians, you have once again pushed the boundaries of human endeavour. Your logic-defying performances have focused the world not on what holds you back, but on what motivates you and pushes you forward. You have shown that with a strong mind and even stronger heart, you can achieve incredible feats. Ultimately, you have rewritten the theory of everything and given new purpose to possibility”.

The Pyeongchang games gave a new insight to Korea, providing the nation with a fresh perspective on the values of sportsmanship and inclusion that Paralympians bring when they come together. For the organizers, the staff, the regular citizens, and most importantly, the volunteersthe games makersit was a great opportunity to embrace diversity and differences among people.

asset_TL3_9798_12263_ioc_2018-03-18_154039.jpgArtists perform during the Closing Ceremony for The Paralympic Winter Games, PyeongChang, South Korea, Sunday 18th March 2018. PHOTO CREDIT: Thomas Lovelock for OIS/IOC.

“I hope that these Games will serve the purpose as a turning point to realise its core values of courage and determination never to give up under any difficult circumstances whatsoever on one hand, and to make the world much more friendly and humane, without prejudice or discrimination, on the other” said Lee Hee-beom, president of the PyeongChang 2018 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games Organising Committee at his closing message.

A series of stunning fireworks display exploded all over the Olympic Stadium bringing the performance to its climax, officially closing out the 2018 Winter Paralympic Games in Pyeongchang.

asset_SB6_9237_12571_ioc_2018-03-18_161514.jpgFireworks erupt after the flame was extinguished during the Closing Ceremony for The Paralympic Winter Games, PyeongChang, South Korea, Sunday 18th March 2018. PHOTO CREDIT: Simon Bruty for OIS/IOC.
Winter Paralympics Recap Day 9 – Last Day of the Games Print E-mail
Written by Staff   

PYEONGCHANG, South KoreaThe day felt nostalgic as the Traditional Korean Dancers, the “Samulnori” invited the crowds to joyfully welcome the athletes as they entered the last Cross Country race of the Games. Crowds were cheerful and in force and despite the gusty winds they embraced the venue and enjoyed the performances throughout the entire time.

On the final day of competition in Pyeongchang 2018 two races took place at the Alpensia Biathlon Center: The relays, these races are usually the athletes’ favorite event because the focus is not individual but on a team supportive effort, they are relaxed, filled with emotion and adrenaline as the competitions come to an end.

DSC_5147.jpg(From R) US team Andrew Soule, Mia Zutter, Kristina Trygstad-Saari, Grace Miller and Sean Halsted pose after the Cross Country Skiing 4×2.5km Open Relay at the Alpensia Biathlon Centre. PHOTO CREDIT: Ken King

Though, it wasn’t the time for the U.S. Paralympic Nordic Skiing Team, who at the end, and in spite of great results, finished in 7th- and 12th-place respectively in the 4×2.5-kilometer mixed and open relays, World champions, France took the the gold in the open relay, the silver went to the Norwegian team and the Canadians clinched the bronze.

AU7I4893.jpgGrace Miller competes in the Open Relay on Sunday March 18th, 2018.  PHOTO CREDIT: Ken King

And even though, the Ukrainians were penalized in the open relay missing the bronze spot they claimed gold in the mixed race followed by Germany in second place and Japan taking the last place in the podium.

Overall, The American Nordic team concludes the Paralympic Winter Games with a total of 16 medals, six gold, seven silver and three bronze. Of those 16 medals, nine were secured in cross-country races, and seven were from biathlon events.

At the Jeongseon Alpine Centre they saved the best for last. Women’s Slalom racing tested the agility of the top para women skiers today. In the Visually Impaired category Staci Manella and Danelle Umstead finished in 10th and 11th positions after run 1. In the final second run Danelle and husband Rob Umstead unfortunately were disqualified and Staci Manella and guide Sadie de Baun came in 9th. Slovakia’s Henrieta Farkasova reigned supreme with another Gold, her 5th gold in PyeongChang. The Brits Menna Fitzpatrick and Millie Knight took home silver and Bronze.

asset_SB5_9378_11413_ioc_2018-03-18_104912.jpgLaurie Stephens USA competes in the Alpine Skiing Sitting Women’s Slalom at the Jeongseon Alpine Centre. The Paralympic Winter Games, PyeongChang, South Korea, Sunday 18th March 2018.PHOTO CREDIT: Simon Bruty for OIS/IOC.

In the women’s standing category after Run 1 Marie Bochet finished in the top position. Melanie Schwartz came in 12th. Regrettably Ally Kunkel got disqualified and Stephanie Jallen did not finish. After the final second run Melanie Schwartz finished in 11th position and Marie Bochet won Gold for France. Slalom for the sitting category after run 1 saw Laurie Stephens in the 8th spot and after run 2 she closely missed the podium and finished in the 5th spot. It was an action packed day for the Slalom runs for the Ladies out in PyeongChang.  Overall Team USA won 6 medals in Alpine skimming at the PyeongChang Paralympic Games.

asset_SB5_8695_11318_ioc_2018-03-18_105108Danelle Umstead USA with her guide Rob Umstead competing in the Alpine Skiing Visually Impaired Women’s Slalom at the Jeongseon Alpine Centre. The Paralympic Winter Games, PyeongChang, South Korea, Sunday 18th March 2018. PHOTO CREDIT: Simon Bruty for OIS/IOC.


America, this is a public notice: when Declan Farmer turns 21 on November 5, 2018, please buy him a round of beer. Lots of them. #16 For the United States Sled Hockey team is being called the best in the game after two remarkable goals to get the comeback victory and the goal medal for Team USA. They defeated the Canadians 2-1 in a tight one. After Steve Cash had his first goal scored on him since Sochi 2014, in Paralympic play, it was Farmer, the Princeton University Student who took Canada to school scoring with 37.8 seconds to tie the game and send it into overtime, he got extra credit in overtime netting the game winner from team Captain Josh Pauls.

When asking about Framer, Pauls said, “He’s the best in the game and it’s his time right now.”

The team held signs that said, “JS”, in reference to their late coach Jeff Sauer, who they dedicated this gold medal run.

Paralympics Day 8 Recap: USA Ranks Number One in the Medal Count Print E-mail
Written by Staff   

PYEONGCHANG, South Korea– The crowds were out in full force and the sun was shining as the athletes brought their final individual performances to the stadium competing in the classic technique middle-distance event. Most of the para athletes  who competed today still have one powerful performance to thrill the crowd: the relays on Sunday 18th March. The conditions have been very versatile, one day is cold and snowy and the next day the sun is shining melting the snow.

Jake Adicoff B3 and guide Sawyer Kesselheim led the day in the Men’s Visually Impaired 10km race capturing a silver medal, which is the first of their Paralympic career.

“It was great. We got out here and the skiing was just so good. The skis were maybe the best out there, so it was a big help and the race was just super fun. We started skiing a little bit conservative and then just tried to build throughout the race.” he said.

In the Women’s standing division middle-distance race 7.5km, first-time Paralympian Grace Miller finished her second longest race ever in a place of 18th. When asked about the condition of the course she said “Great race, great snow, sunny and warm, perfect spring scene.”

In the Women’s sit-ski 5km race Oksana claimed her second gold at these games and of her entire ski racing career. She has been voted the honour of carrying the American Flag into the Closing Ceremony of the Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Paralympic Games on March 18. For the rest of the women sit skiers Kendall Gretsch finished 6th and Joy Rondeau 19th.

asset_TL3_3912_10309_ioc_2018-03-17_111052Joy Rondeau USA competes during the Cross Country Skiing Women’s Sitting 5km at the Alpensia Biathlon Centre. The Paralympic Winter Games, PyeongChang, South Korea, Saturday 17th March 2018. PHOTO CREDIT: Thomas Lovelock for OIS/IOC.

For another newcomer Mia Zutter, who raced in the Women’s 7.5km visually impaired class had another chance to improve her technique and build on the relationship with her guide Kristina Trygstad-Saari

“The more we ski together the better we will be at working together and the closer that we would be able to ski together which is really going to help Mia maximize her race experience” Kristina said.

asset_TL3_8304_10325_ioc_2018-03-17_110135.jpgEui Hyun Sin KOR (L) and Bryan Price USA compete during the Cross Country Skiing Men’s Sitting 7.5km at the Alpensia Biathlon Centre. The Paralympic Winter Games, PyeongChang, South Korea, Saturday 17th March 2018. PHOTO CREDIT: Thomas Lovelock for OIS/IOC.

In Men’s sitting class of the middle-distance cross-country race Dan Cnossen claimed another silver, extending his medal streak of a total of six medals, while the South Korean Eui Hyun Sin he clinched the country’s first Gold medal in Cross Country Skiing.  Andy Soule came in 5th, Sean Halsted in 23rd, and Bryan Price in 26th and rounding it out was Jeremy Wagner in 30th.

BQ7I1081.jpgDan Cnossen competes in the Men’s Middle-distance race 7.5km. PHOTO CREDIT: Shannon Galea

The way that you knew that South Korea would not be going down without a fight was simple, they have Seoul.

South Korea entered the Gangneung Hockey Centre to have their match against Italy with one thing on their mind: not letting their country down. The South Korean faithful were stacked in full force for this one. The team did not disappoint, taking home the Bronze medal the score: 1-0.

It was scoreless into the third period when at the 41:42 mark of the game, when Korea got the game winner from the stick of Dong Shin Jang with the assists from Seung Hwan Jung and Jong Kyung Lee.

asset_JM8_2833_10460_ioc_2018-03-17_101540.jpgThe winning Republic of Korea team pose for a photograph after the Ice Hockey Bronze Medal Game between the Republic of Korea and Italy at the Gangneung Hockey Centre. The Paralympic Winter Games, PyeongChang, South Korea, Saturday 17th March 2018. PHOTO CREDIT: Joel Marklund for OIS/IOC.

Now that the Bronze is out of the way, tomorrow is the gold medal match for Team USA and Team Canada the game is expected to be an ol’ fashioned shootout at noon, similar to the O.K. Corral. The U.S. who have allowed one goal in comparison to the 38 scored, will have Brody Roybal, scorer of 11 of those goals leading them while Canada Captain Greg Westlake, who has said this is his last go around for Team Canada, will lead the team that has not let a goal in compared to the 42 they have scored so far this tournament. It’s going to be a barnburner for sure.

asset_JM8_2687_10445_ioc_2018-03-17_101924.jpgPresident of the Republic of Korea Moon Jae-in talks to Seung Hwan Jung KOR and Dong Shin Jang KOR after Korea’s victory over Italy 1:0 in the Ice Hockey Bronze Medal Game at the Gangneung Hockey Centre. The Paralympic Winter Games, PyeongChang, South Korea, Saturday 17th March 2018. PHOTO CREDIT: Joel Marklund for OIS/IOC.

Norway and China were set to go in the gold medal match, after Norway defeated host country South Korea yesterday. But in the end, they would bow to the Chinese in an extra side (End 9) by the score of 6-5.

In Alpine skiing competitions are down to the last discipline: Slalom. At Jeongseon Alpine center it was a crisp sunny day. Perfect skiing conditions for the technical discipline of Slalom where athletes must take several turns through closely spaced gates.  In the first run Team USA’s Kevin Burton and Guide Brandon Ashby finished in 9th position in the Visually Impaired Category. In the Standing category Jamie Stanton came out victorious on top with 48.51 points just 00.03 points ahead of French competitor Arthur Bauchet. Thomas Walsh came in 5th. For the men’s sitting category Tyler Walker finished strong in second position after Run 1.

Run two takes place on a different course to truly test agility. The course length at the Jeongseon Alpine center is 560 meters long. The winner is the one who has the fastest combined score from both runs.  Kevin Burton got tripped by a gate and unfortunately did not finish in the second run. Gold went to Italian Giacomo Bertagnolli in the Visually Impaired category. Jamie Stanton finished run 2 with a Bronze medal for Team USA.

On winning today Jamie said, “It’s been an awesome 7 years but a tough 7 years. I had to sacrifice a lot but it all paid off today.” For the final run in Men’s sitting the course didn’t work out for Jasmin Bambur and Josh Elliot and they did not finish.

However, the New Hampshire native Tyler Walker took home his second silver medal of the Paralympic Games. Afterwards he said “I never ever thought I would be in this position. It’s amazing. I got all my frustration and emotion out in the Giant slalom and so I could relax a lot more today and just go skiing.”

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