"She thinks I'm too animated," the Bayside resident said. "It's better if I sit up here, away from them."His son Mike, a guard on the Regis basketball team, was playing against Fieldston in the state Federation Class 'B' semifinal Friday. He was knocking down a pair of free throws to seal a 61-53 win and a date with Palmyra-Macedon in the final when his dad fell silent."Tomorrow will only be the second time in four years that I missed seeing him play," Leo said. "But what can I do? I have to go watch Robert at Notre Dame."When you have three children who play team sports and a brother who has three kids who play sports - it's almost impossible to attend all of their games, so you do do the best you can and enlist the services of your wife for help.On Saturday, Robert Gorynski, a senior at Notre Dame, boxed in the Bengal Bouts, which is an amateur boxing tournament at the school that dates back 70 years. The day after he watched Mike, Leo drove up to Albany and hopped on a plane to travel to Notre Dame to watch Robert fight, leaving his wife, Pamela, and their youngest son, Paul, who will be attending Regis next year, to watch their middle child win a championship. Regis defeated Palmyra-Macedon 64-48 for the Class B Federation state title, its first state title since 1993.Leo and Pamela are professional fans: If they are not watching their kids compete, they're making arrangements to watch them compete."We try to see them together, but if there is a conflict, then she goes her way and I go my way," Leo said. "It seems to work out."It gets tricky when the other side of the family is factored into the equation.Leo's brother Pete, also a Bayside resident, is the football coach at Fordham Prep, but he's also the manager of a smaller, more demanding lineup. His oldest daughter, Dawn was a standout basketball player at St. Francis Prep and now plays at Lehigh University. His son P.J. is a freshman baseball player at Yale, and his other daughter, Emma, is a junior at St. Francis Prep where she plays basketball and scored 1570 on her SAT's. Mike scored 1410."They get their brains from their mother," Leo joked. "You try to see your nieces and nephews play, too. You don't want to leave anyone out.""We're always playing sports in the backyard," said Mike, who might walk onto the Notre Dame baseball tean next year. "It's tough for our parents to watch everyone, but they do a good job of putting in the time. I've been playing a sport for as long as I can remember. My father has coached me in all three sports, and that has made us closer. It shows that he loves me. We're always playing soccer games or basketball games or something."When the Gorynskis play pick-up at barbecues, scouts should be in attendance. When they play catch in the yard, an umpire should be squatting behind them calling strikes and balls.All six kids attended Sacred Heart grammar school in Bayside. Leo was raised in Manhattan and sent his children to Regis. Pete enrolled his kids at St. Francis Prep. They both attended Xavier HS in Manhattan.Pete has coached Mike, Paul and Robert in all three sports, and just completed his final season coaching CYO basketball last month. This season will be his final managing in the Bayside Little League after 17 years."It's been a long season," Leo said as Regis began to pull ahead late in the fourth quarter. "I'm just waiting for it to get to baseball season."Reach reporter Mitch Abramson by E-mail at TimesLedger@aol.com or call 718-229-0300 Ext. 130.
©2005 Community News Group
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