Building the Future, One Athlete at a Time
by Cate Murway

Conwell-Egan Catholic Field Hockey team captain, Samantha Ann LaRosa ’07 is so ambitious, patient, responsible, stable, and trustworthy that there should be at least 2 of her! Well, there are.
Sam has a fraternal twin sister, first honor roll student, Lady Eagles' starter basketball guard, Ashley Karen, who added 13 points for the Eagles in the CEC 70, Kennedy-Kenrick, Norristown 54 win.
It was Samantha’s preference to continue her Catholic school education at CEC after graduating from St. Mark Elementary School. This Roman Catholic coeducational, secondary Fairless Hills High School is “committed to enriching, inspiring, and empowering students through academics and a sense of responsibility”. 
Samantha depicts its mission.

Summer sports camps for students in grades one through eight are offered for field hockey, boys and girls basketball, and several other sports. Sam [her name means “Listener”] is building the future, one athlete at a time and sharing valuable life lessons on the court and on the field. Everyone likes to put the ball in the basket and with lots of practice; anyone can become a good shooter. Sam is a Lower Bucks Lightning AAU basketball team player [a proud 17 year old organization known for a high level of competitiveness and elevated caliber of athletes]. Her CEC coach for her frosh & soph years, Larry W. Donofry, Upper Moreland ’78, coached her in the AAU. Larry’s daughter, then a Queen of the Universe student, Kristin, basketball captain CEC’06/LaSalle ’10 Bio major, was her competition throughout grade school. Per Larry, “Sam is a very smart player; very coachable and she would definitely have good coaching ability. She’s an intelligent player and I understand she’s the same way in field hockey. An extremely nice kid, hard working. She played 4 AAU games every weekend for 2 months.”

Sam coached the summer camps, teaching the dribbling skills that are essential to being a well-rounded and solid player and explained footwork and good floor positioning since strength and determination are required, but basketball also demands lots of skill. No matter how good you are, you can always become a better rebounder and more rebounds per game usually means you'll get more playing time. Being a scorer isn't the only way to make a name for yourself: being a tough defensive player (a defensive stopper) can get you in the game, and keep you there! Part of being a good basketball player is being in great physical shape. Stamina is a big part of it [Sam coached at the summer camps throughout her H.S. career], but she instructed the young athletes that foot speed and agility is essential, also. Her aspiring field hockey athletes learn how their practice sessions can translate into success on the game field from a skillful athlete who received the “Hustle” and “Most Improved” awards. This strong team attitude and a solid work ethic athlete can personally emphasize the value of practice sessions contributing toward confidence, and an environment of competition that fosters quality teamwork and unity. Sam is a varsity field hockey player at CEC, a member of the Philadelphia Catholic League (PCL), long recognized as one of the finest leagues in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
Her community service extends far beyond athletics, and Samantha again is a role model for the CEC statement that the school is “designed to produce a well-balanced student who is not only successful in the classroom, but who is also capable of using athletic ability, of working together in extracurricular programs, and of contributing to the enrichment of the school”. As a 3.8 G.P.A. honor student ranked in the top half of her class, Sam willingly shares her time and talents in several altruistic endeavors. Sam participated in VITA [Volunteers in Teaching Alternatives] during her underclass years, reading to Turkish children and assisting them with Arts & Crafts projects.  They not only learned about the importance of creativity, but also exchanged ideas and opened up the lines of communication, sharing different foods and learning about the language. For the past seven years, she and her sister have both performed the responsibilities of a St. Mark altar server, carrying the processional cross and candles or presenting the cruets of wine and water for the priest to put in the chalice. Sam is also a member of the Key Club, a student-led organization, the oldest and largest service program for high school students in the USA that teaches leadership through serving others.
Her parents, General Contractor, James Samuel BHS & Bucks County Technical School‘73/Lincoln Tech ’74 and Snyder-Girotti Elementary School teacher, Donna Ann [Petrizzi] President of her Class BHS ’76/Lycoming College ‘80/Holy Family ElementaryEd Certificate ‘97/Saint Joseph University MS in Instructional Technology ’02 and the twins’ brother, Vincent James, Bucks County Technical School ’11 are Adams Street residents. Generations of the family are longtime Borough residents.

They are extremely proud of their “Royal Blue and White Lady Eagles”.
Sam has received a number of acceptance letters from Kutztown University, and Albright and Alvernia Colleges, Reading.  A potent possibility is to become a purple & gold “Golden Rams” student/athlete for the NCAA Division I Field Hockey team at West Chester University, a “a vibrant campus community whose excellence is reflected in its diversity and student success.”

To recommend a Bristol borough youth to be spotlighted: e-mail