the latest regional New Jersey high school sports news

Feature Articles
Page 2
Video Feed
The Buzz
Contact Us


The Pat Sempier Foundation will be conducting the first annual Kicking Clinic on Saturday, June 8th at Montclair High's Woodman Field. Along with remembering Coach Pat, a few of his former kickers will be giving instruction for youngsters who attend clinic including ex-Cranford High School, Rutgers and Tulane University star Valentino Ambrosio, who is seen with Coach Pat at Phil Simms NJ North-South All-Star Classic and also approaching ball for Tulane this past fall. (Sideline Chatter photos and by Richard Morris/SHP and also courtesy of Tulane Univ. Athletics)

'Coach Pat' Kicking Clinic
June 8th At Woodman Field

By Steve Tober

Valentino Ambrosio continues to train for what he hopes will develop into an opportunity with an NFL team. The recent Tulane University standout from Cranford has finished his college eligibility, but his passion for kicking is still very much ingrained in his whole persona.

And, a man who had a major influence in encouraging the highly-successful placekicker to pursue his dream was New Jersey’s late ‘kicking guru’ Pat Sempier.

Ambrosio is one of Coach Pat’s kickers who will be on hand to work with youngsters during the upcoming first annual Kicking Clinic put together by The Pat Sempier Foundation and set for Saturday, June 8th, at Montclair High School’s Woodman Field located at 10 Essex Ave.

Coach Pat passed way on July 1, 2022 at the age of 88 after nearly six decades of working with New Jersey’s high school kickers dating back to the 1960s, but as 2024 moves briskly along his former pupils are not forgetting the huge influence he had on their lives.

“Coach Pat was a big influence on my development as a kicker from my high school days through college, and he always gave me the encouragement to keep working hard regardless of any setbacks along the way,” said Ambrosio, who completed his red-shirt senior season by converting the winning extra point in Tulane’s 46-45 victory over the University of Southern California in the Cotton Bowl. “It’s going to be great to give back to young kickers who come to the June clinic by showing them whatever I can to help them in their own development regardless of their level as a kicker at this time.

“We will have a great group of coaches on hand to work with the kids, that’s for sure!”

Former St. Joseph of Montvale standout Angelo Guglielmello of Nutley, who kicked collegiately at Stony Brook, will also be on hand at Woodman Field to work with kids to work on technique and individual kicking style, along with others including former Mountie star placekicker and punter Gage Hammond, who now kicks for Wesleyan; former DePaul High School standout Matt Wilderson and the Logan brothers, Ryan, a Glen Ridge assistant coach, and Tyler, who kicked collegiately at Central Connecticut and now serves as a kicking coach at Irvington.

The First Coach Pat Kicking Clinic will run from 9 a.m. to noon for young kickers in the sixth through eighth grades, and those in the ninth through 12th grades will be involved in the clinic from 1-5 p.m.

The cost for 6th-8th graders is $150 and $200 for those in grades 9-12.
See full details on camp flyer below for information on registering for the clinic. The email is and the phone number is 973-979-1874.

Coach Pat’s mantra of ‘head down, drive up,’ is his time-honored approach that is still heard by the kickers he worked with more so many years.

“He taught the fundamentals and kept reminding you of what you should do, but there was everything else that was so great about being out there with Coach Pat,” said Tyler Logan, who was a standout kicker for West Essex in 2019. “You hear about all the kickers that he worked with through the years and it’s just an incredible list of past and present greats.

“He was just so special and he inspired you with his dedication and persistence in always trying to help you become better at your craft and encourage you do to the best you can do with everything you strived for in life.”

One of Coach Pat’s former pupils is Atlanta Falcons All-Pro Younghoe Koo of Ridgewood, who went from Georgia Southern to shine with the Atlanta Legends of the Alliance Of America Football league which helped lead to his opportunity with the Falcons as he has become one of the top kickers in the NFL.

Former Seton Hall Prep all-stater Nick Conforti (Yale University), who is another exceptional kicker and punter, wrote on ‘X’ when the beloved kicking coach passed away nearly two years ago, “RIP Coach Pat. Very grateful to have been guided and supported by a legend!’

Now, with The Pat Sempier Fouondation first annual clinic, the late, great kicking guru’s passion to keep encouraging young kickers in perpetuity, will simply continue.               

Follow Steve Tober on 'X' (formerly Twitter) @Chattermeister

Former West Essex standout Tyler Logan and ex-Montclair star kicker Gage Hammond, seen joining coach Pat while holding a Younghoe Koo No. 7 jersey, will be on hand to help instruct youngsters at the June 8th Pat Sempier Foundation firat annual Kicking Clinic. In bottom photo, the late, great kicking coach is seen with grandson John Merkliner, who is a teacher and is a former football assistant coach at Seton Hall Prep. (SC photo and also courtesy of Ashley Hammond and Richard Morris/SHP)

Copyright 2005 Sideline Chatter - comments - contact the webmaster



< /TA