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Former HS teammates, Dakota Barnathan & Danny Vitiello, reunite as Riverhounds

What are the chances that two Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC teammates would come from the same Long Island town and were once high school teammates?

In a special Zoom meeting interview session, Pittsburgh Soccer Now‘s John Krysinsky hosts an interview session and learns more about the one-time Massapequa High School teammates: midfielder/defender Dakota Barnathan & goalkeeper Danny Vitiello.

Vitiello, who attended University of Albany, then spent his rookie campaign with Nashville SC, made his second start as a Riverhounds SC keeper count last Wednesday, earning his first pro career shutout in the Hounds 2-0 win vs Loundoun United FC and a spot on the USL Team of the Week.

Barnathan followed up an impressive collegiate career at Virginia Commonwealth University playing for the 2017 Swope Park Rangers club that made it to the 2017 USL Cup Final. After two years with Swope Park, then another year in Ottawa, the versatile Barnathan has made six appearances and two starts with the Hounds as a defender and midfielder.

The three Long Island natives discussed a number of topics, including:

  • Barnathan and Vitiello’s Long Island roots, youth and high school careers and when they were teammates at Massapequa High School
  • Their previous professional soccer experiences and how they both came to Pittsburgh as trialists during the 2020 preseason
  • What it’s like to play for veteran coach Bob Lilley
  • Dealing with COVID-19
  • impressions of Pittsburgh
  • Thoughts on Massapequa High School’s most famous alum  and more…



John Krysinsky has covered soccer and other sports for many years for various publications and media outlets. He is also author of 'Miracle on the Mon' -- a book about the Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC, which chronicles the club, particularly the early years of Highmark Stadium with the narrative leading up to and centered around a remarkable match that helped provide a spark for the franchise. John has covered sports for Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, DK Pittsburgh Sports, Pittsburgh Sports Report, has served as color commentator on Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC broadcasts, and worked with OPTA Stats and broadcast teams for US Open Cup and International Champions Cup matches held in the US. Krysinsky also served as the Head Men’s Soccer Coach at his alma mater, Point Park University, where he led the Pioneers to the first-ever winning seasons and playoff berths (1996-98); head coach of North Catholic boys (2007-08), associate head coach of Shady Side Academy boys (2009-2014).

Riverhounds MF Danny Griffin

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