by Steev Riccardo
WEBSTER – For the past seven years Bartlett high school head coach Tony Paranto and Bartlett High School have been hosting the Bob Paranto Holiday Tournament during Christmas school vacation, and it has become of a big hit in these parts.
St. Louis School, Thompson Middle School, Bartlett Junior High and Middle School, and St. Joseph’s School all played in the tournament this year which, among its many positives, helps support two Bartlett High School scholarships.
Last year 2012 Bartlett graduates Nick Kobel and Lindsay Bond each received $500 scholarships towards their college education.
Kobel, who was a 1000-point scorer at Bartlett in basketball, is attending Springfield College, where he plays soccer.
Bond, also a three-sport star at Bartlett, is playing soccer, basketball, and softball at Anna Maria College in Paxton MA.
“It’s been a successful girls and boys tournament for the last seven years, and has drawn a lot of community interest,” said coach Paranto, who does a fantastic job putting this event on every year.
The tournament is named after Tony’s father, the late Bob Paranto, who was a hall of fame coach for the Bartlett Indians. Paranto’s 1979 team won the state championship for the Indians.
Paranto also runs a youth basketball league at the Webster-Dudley Boys & Girls Club, which had its finals this past weekend. The league is for 200 boys and girls grades 1-8.
“Its not a high pressure league; its more of a fun league,” said Paranto. “All of my kids participate and are their coaching all the teams and referees. It’s really important to give back to the community and that is what this does.”