Jerry Voskerichian

Jerry Voskerichian

Jerry Voskerichian was an outstanding lineman at Bennett High School. He was nicknamed the “fire hydrant” because of his stature and being virtually immovable on the line. He was nicknamed “The Perfect Guard” by his coach Nick
Magavero. Jerry played on some great teams at Bennett. The 1959 and 1961 teams were especially noteworthy. They went undefeated in 1959 and won the Harvard Cup and they repeated in 1961. Jerry was the only guard to attain All High status in both the Buffalo Evening News and the Courier Express. In 1962, Jerry had hoped to play in college and was being recruited by Brown University. Unfortunately, a serious knee injury ended any thought of his playing in college.

Although Jerry’s high school career was over he stayed involved in athletics for most of his life. He greatly enjoyed coaching his children in Little League competition. This was not an easy accomplishment as he tragically lost his wife at the age of 26. Jerry also coached his kids in the Connie Mack Little league. He coached hardball and softball at Amherst High School where he also coached his son Kirk.

Jerry also had an outstanding career in the restaurant and real estate business. Jerry’s favorite quote was from the legendary coach Vince Lombardi that sums up his life. Lombardi said, “Winners never quit and Quitters never win” and “it is not whether you get knocked down – it’s whether you get back up.”

Roslyn M. Righetti

Roslyn M. Righetti

Roslyn M. Righetti grew up in North Buffalo. Even at an early age it was obvious that she was very athletic and could play almost any sport. Her mother saw that there was a lack of organized sports for girls. She started an unofficial
softball team at Shoshone Park. Unbelievably, twentyfive girls showed up.

1970-74 St. Joseph CYO basketball. Her senior year her team won the Diocesan Championship. 1970-74 Righetti attended Bennett High School and wanted to play organized sports. Unfortunately, there were no organized sports for girls. The schools gym teachers contacted other schools that had girls that wanted to play sports.There were no uniforms, coaches, referees or buses. The girls had to provide their own transportation. This was the beginning of the movement toward organized women’s sports.

1974-1976 Righetti played basketball and volleyball at ECC North and South. Her team was Intramural Sports Champions in Flag Football and Floor Hockey. In 1976 she played basketball at Buffalo State. 1974-1986 Righetti played on the Buffalo Softball League; winning the championship in 1987. 1979-1986 She played billiards on the Black Rock Women’s Billiard League. She coached boys 7/8 basketball at Hertel North Park and Carroll Turner.

Righetti is the owner of Preservation Pub and still lives in the Buffalo area. She will surely be remembered as one of the greatest woman athletes to have ever gone to Bennett High School.

Carol Caserta

Carol Caserta

Carol Caserta received her Bachelor’s Degree in Spanish from UB in 1964. She received her Masters Degree in Guidance Counseling from the New York University in 1965. She returned to Bennett three months later to teach Spanish. At that time you had to teach at least two years before becoming a counselor. Carol taught Spanish for three years and then started her guidance career in 1968.

She was married in 1969 to her late husband Pat who was a graduate of Lafayette High School. After her daughter and son had grown up, Carol returned to Bennett to teach ESL.

When the opportunity presented itself to join the Bennett High School Alumni Association Board of Directors Carol readily accepted the invitation. Mentoring and tutoring are important components of the association. They certainly had a great impact on Carol. She also became a part of the Redesign Team which has strived to solidify the present and future existence of Lewis J. Bennett High School. A woman of many talents, she joined the Sports Hall of Fame Committee in 2002. She noted that it has been a great pleasure to have taken part in honoring so many outstanding athletes; including the athletes who will be inducted into the Bennett Hall of Fame this coming October at the 16th annual induction ceremony.

Carol is known for her hard work and dedication to Bennett. She truly believes that the best is yet to be at the L.J. Bennett High School of Innovative Technology. She also stressed that former graduates should try in any way to give back to their beloved Alma Mater.

Gary Cohen

Gary Cohen

Gary Cohen starred in baseball from 1958-1961. He was a Cornell Cup All Star and was All High in baseball. He was an outstanding center fielder and was a phenomenal hitter, attaining a mind boggling batting average of .460 his senior year.

The Buffalo Evening News lauded the 1961 All High baseball player with a glowing report on his overall game. Basically, the paper said that Cohen’s .460 batting average was one of the main reasons that helped lead the Bennett Tigers to their winning the league championship. Cohen also stated that Sam Miloro, his Bennett team mate and great friend (Shortstop for Bennett) who batted .430 for Bennett was also a key reason for Bennett’s success.

Cohen also stressed that players had great coaches such as the legendary Fred Braun and Nicholas Mogavero. In addition he noted that the players on his team learned from former Bennett greats such as Carmen Iannaccone, Don Gilbert, Doug Baker and Jerry Obstein.

Cohen graduated Cum Laude in 1968 from SUNY at Buffalo Law School and was the editor of the Law review. He stated that he was extremely delighted to receive the prestige award from Bennett. He noted that Bennett provided some of the greatest moments of his life; especially in sports and scholastically.

Tom Jost

Tom Jost

Tom Jost was an outstanding cross country runner and baseball player. He participated in both sports from 1976-1979. He was All High in cross country in 1978, finishing fourth. In 1979 he achieved a memorable feat by finishing
1st in the cross country run. Awards that he achieved in sports at Bennett were being named cross country captain in 1978 and 1979, cross country Most Valuable Player in 1978-79, and baseball captain in 1980. A moment that he has always treasured was reaching the Sectional final, losing to Trott High School.

After graduating from Bennett he has been a teacher in the Buffalo school system since 1992. He has been the Hutch Tech baseball coach from 2005-2018. His teams were Cornell Cup Champions 2006 and from 2009-2012. He has been Hutch tech assistant football coach from 2007-2018.

He is married to wife Karen and they have two sons, Andrew and Bryan who played basketball, baseball and football at Clarence High School. Even though he is 55 years old Jost still plays baseball and softball four nights a week during the summer and recreation basketball 3 times a week during the rest of the year.

When Jost was notified that he would be inducted into the Bennett High School Sports Hall of Fame he said that he felt honored to be inducted with so many other outstanding athletes and will always remember the caring teachers and coaches at Bennett.