Senior Ryann Gaffney Hopes to Enjoy the Little Things

Huntington's Ryann Gaffney chases down the ball. (Mike Connell photo.)

September 07, 2016

Ryann Gaffney is determined to have as much fun as possible during her senior year at Huntington High School. The teenager already knows where she will be attending college, so that’s one bit of pressure that’s been lifted from her shoulders.

Ms. Gaffney is an athlete; a very good athlete. She’s set to be one of the top players on the Blue Devil soccer, winter track and lacrosse teams, but she’s also a fine student.

“This year I am taking Advanced Placement Literature and Composition, AP Government and Politics, AP Environmental Science, Science Research, Honors Spanish, Calculus and Economics,” Ms. Gaffney said. “I am also interning for my sophomore year Algebra 2 Trig teacher, Mrs. [Lynn] Hendricks, who taught one of my favorite classes that I have taken in high school.”

Huntington senior Ryann Gaffney.

Already a member of the National Honor Society as well as the English and Spanish Honor Societies, Ms. Gaffney is planning on applying for membership in the Math and Social Studies Honor Societies, too.

“I hope to enjoy the little things this year,” Ms. Gaffney said. “All of my friends who have graduated have reminded me that it flies by so I’m going to take in every last moment and have a great time during my senior year.”

Ms. Gaffney has verbally committed to Boston University, which is giving her a scholarship to play on its women’s lacrosse team. “After considering many college recruitment opportunities I became sure that Boston University was the best fit for me,” she said. “Academically, I look forward to studying in the School of Communications and athletically I was fortunate enough to receive a full athletic scholarship for lacrosse.”

The senior’s father is a 1980 Huntington High School alum. Bill Gaffney capped off a stellar Blue Devil wrestling career by compiling a 34-0 record and winning the New York State championship as a senior. He was voted the Most Outstanding Wrestler Award recipient at the 1980 state tournament. He went on to captain the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill wrestling team and win the Atlantic Coast Conference championship.

A cheerful young woman, Ms. Gaffney makes the most of every day. “Transferring to Huntington High School as a sophomore is easily the best decision I have ever made,” the teenager said. “Whether on or off the field, everyone wants what’s best for you. The opportunity for anyone to excel is right in front of you if you choose to put in the work. Overall, my experience at Huntington is better than anything I could’ve imagined. I’m excited for all that’s to come this year.”

Ms. Gaffney is easy to get along with. Her pleasant personality makes her popular with classmates, teachers and coaches. She’s known as a hard worker who gives everything she has to her studies and the teams she plays on.

Ryann Gaffney is a Huntington
soccer star. (Mike Connell photo.)

“I came to Huntington High School as a sophomore not knowing very many people,” Ms. Gaffney said. “As the years have progressed, my experiences on the soccer, track and lacrosse teams have helped me to make friends that I feel as if I’ve known forever. One of my favorite memories is of last winter when the girls’ indoor track team won the county championship for the second consecutive year. Huntington had never won the county title before so to be a part of two championships is something very special to me. That day I broke three school records in the 55m hurdles, 55m dash and the 4x200m relay. The relay in particular was awesome because my teammates and I were able to break the small school county meet record, which is very cool. All these accomplishments wouldn’t have been possible without Coach [Debra] Cheskes and Coach [Shawn] Anderson, who are unbelievable people that I’m very grateful to have had teach me and inspire me to perform my best the last two years.”

Ms. Gaffney has built strong relationships with high school faculty and staff members. “In addition to Mrs. Hendricks, other teachers such as Mrs. [Jessica] Mammone, Mrs. [Stacey] Byrnes, Mr. [David] Moriarty and Ms. [Michelle] Wenz have helped me to reach my full potential in their class,” the senior said. “The great thing about Huntington is not only do teachers want what’s best for you, but everyone in the entire school does, too. Mr. [Steve] Lashin, Coach Todd Jamison and Mr. [Robert] Gilmor are some of the best people I have ever met and help me to push myself to be the best person I can be even though they all don’t formally teach a class.”

As her final year of high school gets underway, the genial Ms. Gaffney is determined to make every day count and to lead her three teams to as many victories as she can all while having as much fun as she possibly can.

Ryann Gaffney in action for Huntington. (Darin Reed photo.)
Ryann Gaffney races to the ball. (Darin Reed photo.)
Ryann Gaffney in action for Huntington. (Darin Reed photo.)