December 20, 2012

Merchant Marine’s Alex Coviello Ends Career Fittingly; Leads Team Stars & Stripes in Mexico

More news about: Merchant Marine

by Director of Athletic Communications, Shaun Ihasz

Midshipmen Lieutenant Alex Coviello (Cape Coral, FL) thought he had played his final collegiate game, a 33-12 victory over St. Lawrence at Brooks Stadium, which he called home for four seasons.   One week later, the senior quarterback walked out of Head Coach Mike Toop's office knowing he had one more game to play.  What Coviello would soon discover is that his trip would be one of the most unforgettable experiences of his football career.

Coviello was headed to Guadalajara, Mexico to represent the USA as part of a team of D-III NCAA all-stars in Tazón De Estrellas, which translates to "Bowl of the Stars".   The American contingent, Team Stars & Stripes, would face off with the CONADEIP all-stars, a squad comprised of players from the national conference of private schools in Mexico.

The game was played Saturday, December 15, but the days leading up to those sixty minutes between the white lines reveal the strong character of a young man who represents the United States Merchant Marine Academy.  Thursday afternoon, Coviello and the rest of Team Stars & Stripes took time away from preparation and practice to visit with the children at Valle del Sol.  While there the team held a football clinic for the kids and helped clean up the community by picking up trash, pulling weeds, and building cement walls.

"This was without a doubt the most beneficial and rewarding experience of the trip," said Coviello.  "The simple joy of throwing a football or having a person to look up to had the children's faces glowing with happiness."

Coviello's leadership was immediately recognized by his new teammates.  Just hours after the trip to Valle del Sol the Head Coach of Team Stars & Stripes, Don De Waard, announced the team would be voting for four captains.  It seems almost poetic that Coviello, whose USMMA helmet bears a U.S. flag on each side, would serve as a captain of the United States' squad.

"Coach told us to vote for who we thought was deserving and showed good leadership skills and play throughout the week," said Coviello.  "I was fortunate to be recognized by my peers and it was a tremendous honor to be named a team captain."

Then came the business of game time.  Coviello completed his experience in Mexico the way any competitor would want to, with a win.  Team Stars & Stripes knocked off the CONADEIP all-stars, 32-15, avenging last season's loss and evening the overall series at 2-2.

"Winning the game was still important," said Coviello. "We did not come back to the U.S. with a loss in 'American' football; a game that I feel defines our country."

One of the great traditions in college football is the playing of a school's fight song after a victory.  Obviously, the United States doesn't have a traditional fight song.  It has something better.  With his teammates circled around him in the locker room, Alex Coviello led his team in the singing of the Star Spangled Banner.  The video of those proud young men evokes an emotion, delivering a message that goes beyond the X's and O's.  In that moment you remember not only what it is to be a proud American but you recognize the strength, unity, personal character provided to our youth by a game we have grown to love.

For Coviello, that anthem is yet another fitting end to his time in a football uniform.  After graduation, he will be commissioned as an officer in the United States Naval Reserve and sail in the maritime industry. 

"This experience was a wonderful way to end my career as a college player," said Coviello.  "It's kind of bitter sweet. I'm thankful that my body will get a break, but at the same time my competitive spirit will miss the game and all the great teammates I have had."

Coviello wanted to make sure he acknowledged those who made his trip a reality, "I would like to thank coach Toop, Croall, Robertson, Carron, and the rest of the coaching staff for making this season the best season of my four years here.  I am extremely thankful to the Mariner Gridiron Club and all alumni donors who made this trip possible. Words cannot describe how appreciative I am for getting the chance to play in the Tazón de Estrellas."

"Being able to represent my country and the Merchant Marine Academy, at the same time, in an international football game is a once in a lifetime occurrence."

Midshipmen Lieutenant Alex Coviello not only represents the United States Merchant Marine Academy.  He embodies the qualities you look for in the best of the best.  Coviello is intelligent, humble, driven, selfless, and honest.  He is a Mariner.

 

 
Sep. 1: All times Eastern
7:00 PM
Coast Guard at Anna Maria
Live Stats
7:00 PM
Defiance at Baldwin Wallace
Video Live Stats
7:00 PM
Washington and Lee at Johns Hopkins
Video Live Stats
7:30 PM
Trine at Manchester
Live Stats
8:00 PM
Belhaven at Millsaps
Video Live Stats
Sep. 2: All times Eastern
6:00 PM
Mass-Dartmouth at Mount Ida
6:00 PM
Delaware Valley at Wesley
Video Live Stats
7:00 PM
Muhlenberg at Wilkes
Video Live Stats
7:00 PM
N.C. Wesleyan at Stevenson
Live Stats
7:00 PM
Western New England at Springfield
Video Live Stats
7:00 PM
Fitchburg State at Becker
Video Live Stats
7:00 PM
Albright at Salisbury
7:00 PM
WPI at MIT
Live Stats
7:00 PM
Salve Regina at Worcester State
7:00 PM
Bridgewater State at Curry
Video Live Stats
7:00 PM
Morrisville State at St. Lawrence
Video Audio
7:00 PM
Nichols at Westfield State
10:00 PM
Adrian at Pacific
Live Stats
Sep. 3: All times Eastern
12:00 PM
Endicott at Framingham State
Video Live Stats
12:00 PM
Washington U. at Carnegie Mellon
Video Live Stats
12:00 PM
Chicago at Case Western Reserve
Video Preview Live Stats
12:00 PM
Husson at Alfred
12:00 PM
SUNY-Maritime at Maine Maritime
Video
12:00 PM
Cortland at Heidelberg
Live Stats
12:00 PM
Otterbein at Buffalo State
Video Live Stats
12:00 PM
Ursinus at Bethany
Video Live Stats
12:00 PM
Sewanee at Kenyon
12:00 PM
Alfred State at William Paterson
1:00 PM
King's at Moravian
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
Kean at Christopher Newport
1:00 PM
McDaniel at Catholic
Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
Lebanon Valley at Franklin and Marshall
Video Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
Plymouth State at Castleton
Live Stats
1:00 PM
Randolph-Macon at Dickinson
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
Oberlin at Kalamazoo
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
Emory and Henry at Ferrum
Video Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
Wooster at Washington and Jefferson
Video Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
St. Vincent at Alma
Live Stats
1:00 PM
Concordia (Wis.) at Finlandia
1:00 PM
Olivet at St. John Fisher
Video Live Stats Audio Audio
1:00 PM
Rowan at Widener
Audio
1:00 PM
Hobart at Brockport
Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
Union at Ithaca
Live Stats
1:00 PM
Susquehanna at Lycoming
Video Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
Utica at Misericordia
1:00 PM
The Apprentice School at Methodist
1:00 PM
TCNJ at UW-Whitewater
Live Stats
1:30 PM
RPI at Norwich
Video Live Stats
1:30 PM
Wilmington at Bluffton
1:30 PM
Monmouth at Hope
Video Audio
1:30 PM
Bridgewater at Gettysburg
Video Live Stats
1:30 PM
Muskingum at Waynesburg
Audio
1:30 PM
Juniata at Grove City
2:00 PM
Wisconsin Lutheran at Trinity Int'l
2:00 PM
Lakeland at Carroll
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
UW-Stevens Point at St. Norbert
2:00 PM
Austin at Hendrix
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
Maranatha Baptist at Martin Luther
Live Stats
2:00 PM
Millikin at Greenville
Live Stats
2:00 PM
Eureka at Knox
Live Stats
2:00 PM
MacMurray at Rockford
Live Stats
2:00 PM
Gustavus Adolphus at Westminster (Mo.)
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
UW-La Crosse at Luther
2:00 PM
Beloit at Lake Forest
Live Stats
2:00 PM
Concordia-Moorhead at Jamestown
2:00 PM
Crown at Hamline
Live Stats
2:00 PM
Carleton at Macalester
Audio
2:00 PM
Bethel at Dubuque
2:00 PM
St. Scholastica at St. John's
Video Live Stats Audio Audio
2:00 PM
St. Olaf at Grinnell
2:00 PM
Buena Vista at Mayville St.
2:00 PM
Simpson at UW-Stout
2:00 PM
Aurora at Carthage
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
UW-River Falls at Coe
2:00 PM
Ripon at Concordia-Chicago
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
Elmhurst at Loras
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
Huntingdon at Louisiana College
Video
2:00 PM
North Central (Ill.) at Robert Morris-Chicago
Video Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
Benedictine at Wheaton (Ill.)
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
John Carroll at UW-Oshkosh
Video Audio Audio
2:30 PM
Southern Virginia at Earlham
Video Live Stats
2:30 PM
Lawrence at Presentation
4:00 PM
McPherson at Nebraska Wesleyan
Live Stats
4:00 PM
UW-Platteville at George Fox
4:00 PM
La Verne at Puget Sound
Video Live Stats
4:00 PM
Central at Whitworth
Video Live Stats Audio
5:00 PM
Hartwick at Western Connecticut
Live Stats
6:00 PM
Wabash at Albion
Video Live Stats Audio
6:00 PM
Maryville (Tenn.) at Berry
Video Live Stats
6:00 PM
Augustana at Mount St. Joseph
Live Stats
6:00 PM
Thomas More at Franklin
Video Live Stats Audio
6:00 PM
Hampden-Sydney at Averett
Video Live Stats
7:00 PM
Denison at Marietta
Video Live Stats Audio
7:00 PM
Hiram at Westminster (Pa.)
7:00 PM
Thiel at Allegheny
Video Live Stats Audio
7:00 PM
Capital at Wittenberg
Video Live Stats Live Stats
7:00 PM
Shenandoah at Gallaudet
Live Stats
7:00 PM
Illinois College at Rose-Hulman
Video Live Stats
7:00 PM
Geneva at Frostburg State
7:00 PM
Greensboro at Guilford
Live Stats
7:00 PM
LaGrange at Birmingham-Southern
7:00 PM
Hardin-Simmons at Southwestern
Live Stats Audio
7:00 PM
Anderson at North Park
7:00 PM
Ohio Wesleyan at Mary Hardin-Baylor
Video Live Stats Audio
7:00 PM
East Texas Baptist at Texas Lutheran
Video Live Stats Audio
7:10 PM
St. Thomas at UW-Eau Claire
Video Live Stats
7:30 PM
Hanover at Centre
Video Live Stats
8:00 PM
Willamette at Rhodes
8:00 PM
Cornell at Iowa Wesleyan
Video Live Stats Live Stats
8:00 PM
Augsburg at Northwestern (Minn.)
Live Stats
8:00 PM
Southwestern Assemblies at Howard Payne
Video Live Stats Audio
8:00 PM
Sul Ross State at UT-Permian Basin
8:30 PM
Redlands at Trinity (Texas)
Live Stats Audio
Sep. 1: All times Eastern
7:00 PM
Washington and Lee at Johns Hopkins
Video Live Stats
Sep. 2: All times Eastern
6:00 PM
Delaware Valley at Wesley
Video Live Stats
7:00 PM
Albright at Salisbury
Sep. 3: All times Eastern
12:00 PM
Cortland at Heidelberg
Live Stats
1:00 PM
TCNJ at UW-Whitewater
Live Stats
2:00 PM
North Central (Ill.) at Robert Morris-Chicago
Video Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
John Carroll at UW-Oshkosh
Video Audio Audio
2:00 PM
Huntingdon at Louisiana College
Video
2:00 PM
St. Scholastica at St. John's
Video Live Stats Audio Audio
2:00 PM
Benedictine at Wheaton (Ill.)
Video Live Stats
4:00 PM
UW-Platteville at George Fox
4:00 PM
Central at Whitworth
Video Live Stats Audio
6:00 PM
Thomas More at Franklin
Video Live Stats Audio
6:00 PM
Wabash at Albion
Video Live Stats Audio
7:00 PM
East Texas Baptist at Texas Lutheran
Video Live Stats Audio
7:00 PM
Ohio Wesleyan at Mary Hardin-Baylor
Video Live Stats Audio
7:00 PM
Hardin-Simmons at Southwestern
Live Stats Audio
7:10 PM
St. Thomas at UW-Eau Claire
Video Live Stats