- This is Poly
The champion Poly Prep Blue Devils will have a shiny new baseball diamond to play on this spring with the Grand Opening of the Matt Roventini Field on April 30, Reunion Day. The Poly community is invited to the dedication and ribbon cutting at 12:00 PM as part of a pre-game celebration. Food trucks will arrive at 11:00 AM so you can get your hot dog and settle into the new bleachers for the 1:00 PM first pitch of an exciting game between two powerhouse teams, Poly Blue Devils vs Don Bosco Ironmen.
Since 2004, Head Coach Matt Roventini ’92, P ’21, ’25 has led the Poly Prep Baseball program to national prominence, earning 13 consecutive Ivy Prep League titles, nine NYSAIS championships, and one undefeated season (2007).
“It is an exceptional honor to have the field named for me,” Roventini said. “Poly baseball has a long-standing tradition of excellence. It is heartfelt to be recognized in this regard. I hope that during my tenure at Poly I have had a positive lasting effect on the student-athletes. This is also a testament to all of those players and coaches whom I have had a privilege to coach and work with over the years. The success we have as a program is a direct reflection on those involved. It takes a village to build a program to the national level. The new field will be not only a tribute to me, but also to all the alumni who have played for Poly. I am excited for the future.”
Take me out the ballgame! Come fill the bleachers in the Roventini Baseball Field on April 30 and cheer on your 2022 Poly Prep Blue Devils baseball team!
A very generous $5 million lead gift was donated so that Poly’s athletics complex including baseball, softball, soccer, and lacrosse fields could be renovated and renewed. The project will be fully funded by donations. It was the intention of the donors to honor Roventini for his long, successful tenure and his impact on young athletes throughout his career by naming the baseball field for him.
“What Matt has done for Poly Prep Baseball has been remarkable,” said Assistant Coach Matt Durando ’96, P’30. “He is a true leader and knows how to get the most out of each and every player in the program. He sees the value in each player and finds ways to help them develop. I have learned so much from his leadership as both a teacher and baseball coach.”
Poly Blue Devil Devan Kodali ’22 said he can’t wait to play on the new field.
About Roventini being honored, Kodali said, “I think it is very much deserved. In his time as head coach, ‘Roves’ has created a program that is built on a culture of camaraderie, hard work, and winning. You hear about a small private school in Brooklyn, and a winning baseball program packed with D1 talent is not necessarily what comes to mind. This being the reality is a testament to who Roves is as a coach and person.”
The Athletics Fields at Poly’s Dyker Heights campus serve 800 students in Grades 5 to 12, providing facilities not only for baseball, softball, lacrosse, and soccer, but also daily physical education classes. In the past, poor drainage of the fields has left them unusable after heavy rains. “The bullpen and batting cages will allow for players to safely prepare for a game and enhance practice planning,” said Durando. “With outdoor bullpens and batting cages, coaches can allow time for drills to take place in those spaces, thus maximizing time and efficiency.”
The Board of Trustees approved a plan for replacing the fields including:
Here’s a sneak peek of what the newly upgraded fields will look like:
Durando recalls that Poly players “cared and were deeply committed, creating a family atmosphere in the dugout and everywhere we went. I still honor those friendships today and treasure those memories. Playing baseball at Poly was incredible. Stepping on that new field will cause me to shed a few tears. Some very special people are looking down on us and I know they would be thrilled with this new facility. Joseph Della Pietra ’95, Terence Gazzani ’95, and Mark Hindy ’91 will be thought of and remembered before each game. The field will be a reflection on the rich history of our program.”
“Generations of baseball alums will be playing on the Matt Roventini Field and the idea of my son stepping foot on the new field in the future makes me feel incredibly excited.”Assistant Coach Matt Durando ’96, P’30
Come celebrate Poly’s world-class field renovations and the dedication for the Matt Roventini Field on April 30 (Reunion Day!). Show your Poly spirit by rooting for our 2022 Poly Prep Blue Devils baseball team!