The Berlin High School Athletic Hall of Fame will celebrate its Class of 2020 on Sunday, April 26 at the Aqua Turf in Plantsville. The inductees are: Steve Baccaro (Class of 1947), Phil Perretta (Class of 1961), John Steurer (Class of 1980), Cynthia Gozzo Dastoli (Class of 1990), Robert Manzo (Class of 1990), Allison Murphy Semenuk (Class of 2002), Matt Carasiti (Class of 2009), and the 1999 and 2000 BHS wrestling teams.
For more information, visit bhshalloffame.org.Steve Baccaro, Class of 1947
Baccaro was a four-year letterman in baseball, basketball and football. He was the captain of the football team his senior year when Berlin set a new team record, winning five games while losing just two under new coach Bill Gibney.
Baccaro was the first recipient of the Richard Patterson Award, which takes into consideration outstanding ability in the field of sports, as well as good scholarship and sportsmanship.
After high school, Baccaro played for the New Britain Machine in the Industrial League and the Mohawks in the Berlin town league. He also played golf for New Britain Machine and was a member of the Knights of Columbus bowling league.
Baccaro married his high school sweetheart, Louise Sokolowski, who was a cheerleader while Baccaro was playing.Phil Perretta,Class of 1961
Perretta was a four-year varsity athlete in both football and basketball. He was captain of the football team his senior year when he received the Babe Ruth Award for best athlete in the class.
Perretta’s interest in athletics began in 1954 when he was a pitcher on the Cubs with Berlin Little League. That year the team went 7-1 and won the town championship. Perretta later competed in what was then the Alumni League and in the Hartford Twilight League.
After high school, Perretta played with a local softball team and in a town basketball league with fellow Hall of Fame members Bob McCann and Tony Legnani.
Perretta was always interested in the Summer Olympics, so in 1964 he spent two weeks in Tokyo where he saw Bob Hayes compete. Hayes went on to play for the Dallas Cowboys. Perretta’s biggest thrill was being able to dine with Jessie Owens, one of the greatest athletes of all time.
In 1968, Perretta spent two weeks in Mexico City and was in the arena when John Carlos and Tommy Smith put up their fist for the black power movement. He also saw Bob Beamen shatter the long jump record.