It has been a summer of seconds for the Old Bridge Little League 12-year-old All-Stars. The Little Leaguers recently completed a highly successful summer season by placing second in the South Amboy YAA 12-year-old tournament — after also placing second in the District 10 tourney. Old Bridge finished the all-star season at 14-4, with losses only to District champion Woodbridge and to St. Joseph’s of Keyport. Old Bridge boasted a team batting average of .405, led by first baseman George Gonzalez (.654, four home runs, 25 RBIs), center fielder Matt DiPaolo (.636, two home runs, 28 RBIs), right fielder Robert Orrechio (.454, 12 RBIs) and third baseman Joe Caria (.318, four home runs, 12 RBIs). The pitching staff was led by Nick Panos (5-2), Gonzalez (5-2), Dan Avella, Jim Yacabonis, Jeremy Rusakowski and Jeff Jacobs. The team’s defense was anchored by the solid play of center fielder Matt DiPaolo, shortstop Nick Panos, Gonzalez, catcher Greg Padin, third baseman Matt Kondratyk and second baseman Ray Cruz. Other players making significant contributions included Joe Russo, Austin Tomasiewicz, Kyle Naples and Kevin McLaughlin. Although the summer was filled with many memorable moments for the Old Bridge squad, perhaps the most significant included Gonzalez’s two home runs in one inning against Laurence Harbor; Joe Caria’s same feat against South River; Nick Panos’ 6-0 shutout of Franklin; and Matt DiPaolo’s tape-measure, three-run home run against Franklin. The team was coached by Vinny Perchill, Bill Keebler, George Gonzalez and Dan DiPaolo.
The Middletown United Red Devils U10 travel soccer team is looking for a few competitive players to round out its roster. The team competes throughout Monmouth and Ocean counties. Players must be born between Aug. 1, 1995, and July 31, 1996. Please call (732) 671-4159, or e-mail [email protected] for additional information. The following are the results of the Shore Athletic Club Youth Cross Country Series week one competition at Holmdel Park, held on Sept. 4: 800 meters, girls — 1. Cammi Plage 3:34; 2. Erin Walenczyk 3:40; 3. Tara Walenczyk 4:34. Boys — 1. Michael Molloy 5:11. One mile, girls — 1. Kiara Joyner 8:36; 2. Hannah Molloy 9:25; 3. Donna Molloy 9:31; 4. Natalie Santos 9:49; 5. Perri Lee 10:20. Boys — 1. Daniel Figueiredo 9:42. 3,000 meters (9-10), girls — 1. Kiara Joyner 19:57. Boys — 1. Anfernee Joseph 13:32; 2. Jaspal Singh 13:47; 3. Ajay Singh 14:16; 4. John Walsh 14:53; 5. Jonathan Molloy 16:02; 6. Alex Walenczyk 16:24; 7. Filipe Fontes 16:38. 3,000 meters (11-12), girls — 1. Jessica Fonseca 15:54; 2. Lauren Santos 17:11; 3. Lindsay Lee 19:56. Boys — 1. Daniel Jones 14:50; 2. Kevin Molloy 15:35. 4,000 meters, girls — 1. Nicole Cordeiro 21:55; 2. Vanessa Gaspar 24:38; 3. Cristina Da Torre 25:01; 4. Vanessa Silva 25:36; 5. Joana Marques 26:39. Boys — 1. James Steveson 16:20; 2. Ryan Jacobs 16:31; 3. Jonathan Urena 16:49. 5,000 meters, girls — 1. Marta Marques 36:18. Boys — 1. John Daniels Jr. 23:00; 2. Miguel Da Torre 23:26.
Lions want to improve upon 3-7 campaign from a year ago Middletown High School North football looks to continue its improvement this season under third-year coach Joe Trezza, with an eye on earning a playoff berth. Above: Middletown High School North’s Uly Gibson is upended by a St. John Vianney defender during a recent scrimmage. Below: Lions quarterback Joe Dicky looks for a receiver. The team’s first regular season game is slated for Sept. 12 versus Toms River North. Last fall the Lions showed they could still roar, posting a 3-7 mark, and more important, keeping themselves in most games well into the second half. The previous year, Trezza’s first at the helm, Middletown North went winless. “We’re looking to step it up to the next level and keep improving with every game,” the coach said. “Our goal is to be playing some important games late in the season.” With a slew of seniors back, expectations are higher this year, but the Lions have one obstacle: their field or lack thereof. Since Middletown North’s field is being renovated, Trezza’s team will play its home games at Middletown South. JEFF GRANIT staff “We’re not going to be worrying about that,” he said. “Our job is to go out and play the game.” Trezza’s charges should be able to post plenty of points, thanks to a senior-laden offense, which could go a long way toward making the postseason. The Lions return quarterback Joe Dickey (6-0, 175), who threw six touchdown passes a year ago. Dickey will be throwing to a pair of solid receivers in Nick Zinner and Connor Delepine. Zinner pulled in 27 receptions a year ago, while the 6-2 Delepine grabbed three TD passes. Uly Gibson (5-9, 170), who ran for four touchdowns, is the halfback, with Will Enny (5-8, 170) and Joe Ciccone (5-10, 170), splitting time at fullback. Frank Constantini (5-9, 225) lines up at center, flanked on the left by guard Yuri Pinto (6-0, 270) and tackle Tom Booth (6-0, 210). Patrick Donlin (6-3, 280) is the right guard and Tom Constantino (5-11, 180) and Brian McDonald (6-0, 225) will share right tackle duties. “We’re really expecting a lot from the offense,” said Trezza, who will employ multiple sets. “They have some size and a lot of experience, particularly at the skill positions. We have a good mix of passing and running, so we’re going to be looking to open up the game a bit.” Trezza is also hoping that place kicker Dylan Maresca will put up points for the Lions. On the other side of scrimmage, the Lions’ strength is a solid corps of linebackers and an experienced secondary. Dan Wollman (5-11, 175) will be the middle linebacker in Middletown North’s 4-3 set. Dan Meehan (6-0, 180) and Ryan Wagner (5-8, 190) are the outside linebackers. Zinner, Jake Bruno, junior Chris Dura and Chris Trezza, a second cousin to the coach, patrol the secondary for the Lions. North’s offensive line is composed of ends Kevin Lennox (6-2, 200) and Mike Fish (5-11, 185), and tackles Max Gordon (6-0, 223), Nick Marron (5-10, 240), a junior, and Jake Smith (5-11, 245), a sophomore. “Our defense is inexperienced up front, but if they can come together and stop the run, we can shut down opponents,” Trezza explained. “I think teams will have a hard time trying to throw the ball against us.” The Lions’ first test comes on Sept. 12 when Toms River North comes to town. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. at Middletown South. The sports department can be reached at [email protected] BY WARREN RAPPLEYEA Staff Writer
BY TIM MORRIS Staff Writer TheChristianBrothersAcademy distance medley relay team went to the Feb. 7 New Jersey Varsity Classic at the New YorkArmory looking to run fast. The quartet of George Kelly, Cody Barron, Dan Mykityshyn and Mike Mazzaccaro did just that, turning in the fastest DMR in the country this winter, 10:11.0.“This was the first time we ran the DM all season,” said Mykityshyn, who ran the 800- meter third leg of the relay. “We were set and ready to go.” Were they ever. Even though the Colts were basically running by themselves (they finished 14 seconds ahead of runner-up Randolph) after Kelly’s superb lead-off 3:06.3 1,200 leg, they were still able to put down the fastest time in the nation.Barron followed Kelly’s lead, running a fine 50.1 400 split, and Mykityshyn broke 2:00 with his 1:57.4. Anchor Mazzaccaro ran an unchallenged 4:16.8 1,600, bringing the Colts home light-years ahead of the competition.TheColts didn’t want to just run fast for the sake of it, they were looking to break the program’s indoor record of 10:13, which they did.“Anytime you can set a school record at CBA, it’s definitely an accomplishment,” said Mykityshyn.Plans are for this DMR team to run again at the Armory at the New Balance Indoor Nationals, where they would like to add a national championship to their résumé.“This group has never won a national championship, and that’s what we aspire to do,” Mykityshyn said.Last month, Mykitsyn, Kelly, Conrad Lippert and Tom Gorman became the first CBA team towin the Suburban High School 4×800 relay at the prestigious Millrose Games at Madison Square Garden.Along with the upcoming Indoor Nationals, the Colts’ DMR team is already thinking spring and the Penn Relays. Their nationally leading time is fast enough to qualify for Penn, where they will be chasing a Championship of America title in Franklin Field on the campus of the University of Pennsylvania.Before thinking about a national championship, however, the Colts have one big team goal remaining this indoor campaign. Thus far, CBAhas won every championship it has contested, from the Monmouth County and State Relays to the Monmouth County and Shore Conference meets to the New Jersey Catholic Track Conference crown. Saturday at the Bennett IndoorComplex inTomsRiver, CBAwill look to capture the final team championship of the season, the NJSIAANon-PublicAGroup state championship.They enter the meet as overwhelming favorites based on their potential to score in every event. The meet starts at 9 a.m.
Middletown High School South did everything it could to not take its game at Middletown High School North lightly on Thanksgiving. After all, Middletown North was enjoying its most victories (six) since its last winning season, which was in 2000.But there is a state championship game on Dec. 6 at 7 p.m. at Rutgers University’s High Point Solutions Stadium against Jackson Memorial High School — the 12th championship trip in the last 16 years for the Eagles (9-2).Matawan Regional High School also plays for a state championship in NJSIAA Central Jersey Group III when it takes on Carteret High School at 7 p.m. on Dec. 5 at Kean University. MIDDLETOWN SOUTH Middletown South needed a 10-point rally in the fourth quarter on Thanksgiving morning for a 20-13 victory over Middletown North. Matt Mosquera kicked a 36-yard field goal, and Cole Rogers scored his second touchdown of the game — a 56-yard run to give him 26 touchdowns on the season. His workhorse effort of 31 carries for 199 yards gives him 1,557 yards rushing for the season.Middletown North took a 13-10 lead after three quarters when sophomore quarterback Donald Glenn threw touchdown passes of 29 yards to Jordan Pitts in the second quarter and 24 yards to Josh Gomez in the third quarter. It was no surprise to Middletown South coach Steve Antonucci, who said before the game that Middletown North coach Steve Bush has changed the attitude around the school toward winning and contending for championships in his two years there.However, Middletown South, which has shut out six opponents and has a 323-94 scoring margin, held Chad Freshnock, who has had back-to-back 1,000-yard rushing seasons, to 66 yards on 25 carries to score its 14th straight holiday victory over the Lions (6-4).Winning the game — its fifth straight — was important for Middletown South to gain momentum going into the Jackson Memorial game. Coming out of the game healthy was even more important, and both missions were accomplished.Antonucci compares Jackson Memorial to Manalapan High School with the commanding profile of its offensive and defensive lines, which have led to the Jaguars scoring more than 400 points and allowing 156 points in a 10-1 season. Mike Gawlik’s 20 touchdowns and Vincent Lee’s 15 lead the ground game, while Joe DeMaio brings two years of big-game experience at quarterback. Gawlik has averaged three touchdowns a game over the last five.While Middletown South comes off a 27-3 victory over Neptune High School in the Central Jersey Group IV semifinals and is seeking its first state title since beating Moorestown High School in 2006, Jackson Memorial is seeking its first state title since 2005 after routing Brick Township High School, 45-7, in the semifinals on Nov. 21. That win for the Jaguars avenged a 30-24 overtime loss to Brick Township that eventually decided the Shore Conference A South Division. Since then, Jackson Memorial has reeled off seven straight victories.“They have Manalapan’s physicality. Their offense is different, but their mindset is the same with the ability to throw the ball downfield and big kids clogging up the gaps,” Antonucci said.Jackson Memorial coach Walt Krystopik also praised Middletown South’s line play with size and strength that compares to Brick Memorial High School and Red Bank Catholic High School.Both teams also have effective kickers, with Middletown South quarterback Mosquera handling the kicking for his team and Jared Calhoun kicking for Jackson Memorial. MATAWAN Defense will be the key for a Matawan team (7-4) that has won four straight games and lived up to its billing as one of the sleeper teams in the state playoffs after opening its season with two lopsided, shutout losses. It comes off a 23-20 victory over Ocean Township High School and must now clamp down on Carteret’s Rakeem Bennett, who has rushed for 1,554 yards and scored 18 touchdowns, and quarterback Nelson Baez, who has thrown for 1,050 yards and seven touchdowns.Freshman quarterback George Pearson has come into his own for Matawan, completing 51.9 percent of his passes for 1,755 yards and 12 touchdowns. His favorite targets are Justin Ferrara, who has 37 receptions for 781 yards and five touchdowns, and DeJohn Rogers, who has 33 catches for 554 yards and five touchdowns.Freshman Devon Spann leads Matawan’s ground gainers with 138 carries for 799 yards and 10 touchdowns. By WAYNE WITKOWSKI Correspondent
The completion of the French Open semi-final between Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray has been delayed until Saturday after the match was interrupted by a storm on Friday, organisers said.World number one Djokovic of Serbia was leading 6-3 6-3 5-7 3-3 against the British third seed when play was suspended, with organisers later saying the match would resume on Saturday at 1100GMT (7 AM ET).The women’s singles final is due to start at 1300GMT.The winner will face Switzerland’s Stan Wawrinka in Sunday’s final.
By Steve KeatingItalian veteran Flavia Pennetta reached the US Open semi-finals for the second time in three years on Wednesday, outsmarting fifth seed Petra Kvitova 4-6 6-4 6-2 to add to the Czech’s Flushing Meadows frustration.The Italian flag will feature prominently in the semi-finals with the 33-year-old Pennetta joined in the last four by 32-year-old compatriot Roberta Vinci, who booked her spot on Tuesday with a victory over Frenchwoman Kristina Mladenovic.“I was just trying to fight every ball, running and trying to push the most I can,” the Italian said in an on-court interview.“The second set I was really in trouble, but I just kept going, playing and playing. It’s unbelievable.”Pennetta has always been at home on the New York hard courts having now advanced to quarter-finals or beyond in six of her last seven visits to the National Tennis Center.The same courts, however, have not been kind to Kvitova, the two-time Wimbledon champion, who never ventured past the fourth round until this year.Kvitova, one of only two players to beat Serena Williams this season, had been in superb form winning her final US Open tune-up in New Haven and carried that momentum into Flushing Meadows, reaching the quarter-finals without dropping a set.The Czech had looked well on her way to a first semi-final appearance when she easily took the opening but the veteran Pennetta kept her cool on another sizzling day in New York.Serving at 5-4 in the second Pennetta wobbled, missing an easy winner to hand Kvitova a break chance but the Italian did not buckle and hung on to level the match and then dominated the third set as Kvitova wilted in the oppressive heat.“It’s not just the heat, it’s the tension for the match, for what do you think you have to be, what do you want to be, what do you want to do,” said Pennetta.“It’s so many things in your mind. You just try to take everything out of your mind and just play tennis.“I’m sorry for her. It’s not a good feeling when you feel so tired and you cannot move very well.“We played a really tough match, more than two hours running everywhere. She has to be proud of herself because she was playing up to the last point.”
Striker Jamie Vardy may have returned to the headlines as Leicester City closed in on the Premier League title on Sunday, but the contribution by the team’s defenders cannot be overlooked.In the 2-0 victory at Sunderland Vardy became the club’s first player to reach 20 top-flight league goals since Gary Lineker’s 24 in 1984-5.Just as significant, however, was the clean sheet kept by goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel and those in front of him. It was their fifth in succession, the previous four all having earned vital points in 1-0 wins.Earlier in the season Claudio Ranieri’s side were conceding regularly — including five in a home defeat by Arsenal — but since the experienced Italian introduced Danny Simpson and Austrian Christian Fuchs at full back, there have been 13 clean sheets in 22 games.Thanks to that pair and central defenders Robert Huth and Wes Morgan, Schmeichel’s fine save from Fabio Borini in the first half at Sunderland was the only time he was tested.It is now 490 minutes since West Bromwich Albion became the last team to pierce the armour, in a surprise 2-2 draw at Leicester on March 1.West Ham United, in sixth place and on a good run, are the next team to attempt to find a chink when they visit the King Power Stadium next Sunday.Swansea City, in 12th place, follow them, by which time Leicester could be in a position to sew up the title.Their remaining fixtures after that are away to Manchester United and Ranieri’s former club Chelsea, either side of a home game with Everton.The next landmark, still not mathematically certain, will be a place in the Champions League for the first time.Leicester are guaranteed a top-four Premier League finish, but if Liverpool and Manchester City both finished fifth or below, while winning the Europa League and Champions League respectively, then only the top three would qualify for Europe’s elite competition.Leicester have only ever played in European competition three times, the last of them in the 2000-1 UEFA Cup.“The fans must continue to dream but we must continue to be concentrated and focused,” Ranieri told the BBC on Sunday.“Now we have two tough matches at home. The Champions League is not in our pocket but it is on the table and we have to take it. We don’t achieve nothing yet.”
Portugal coach Fernando Santos is counting on Cristiano Ronaldo to use another impressive season with Real Madrid as a springboard to a strong Euro 2016 campaign.Ronaldo joined his national team in training on Sunday, eight days after scoring the winning penalty against Atletico Madrid for Real to lift the Champions League trophy.His presence is a boost for Portugal, who lost 1-0 to England in a friendly last week and take on Estonia on Wednesday in Lisbon in their final warm-up game.Santos had wanted to give Ronaldo and Real defender Pepe a chance to a catch their breath before they joined the team.“They needed to rest,” Santos told Spanish sports magazine Marca.“It’s better for everyone that they arrive happy and with that extra bounce after achieving their aims.”Ronaldo scored 51 goals in 48 games in all competitions for Real this season.“If he is so important for Real, you can only imagine how significant he is for Portugal. Certainly the same or even more.“When you have players that score 50 to 60 goals per season, and who can always score, they are of vital importance. It’s impossible to quantify.”Ronaldo’s fitness is a concern, with tendonitis preventing him from being at his best at the 2014 World Cup when Portugal crashed out in the group stages.“There’s always talk that all the players must arrive 100 per cent,” Santos said. “But that is never the reality.“Obviously, it would be ideal if he was at his best but I would never stop calling Cristiano even if he was at 80 per cent.”Ronaldo, 31, came close to winning a trophy with Portugal at Euro 2004 but Greece beat them in the final.Portugal reached the semi-finals four years ago but were eliminated by Spain on penalties.“If we think of the generation of players we have had, it’s about time,” Santos said.“Portugal should have already won a European title but just like Spain, they took their time and now they have managed to win several trophies.”Portugal begin their Euro 2016 campaign against Iceland on June 14 in Marseille. They also face Austria and Hungary in Group F.
Novak Djokovic brushed past France’s Adrian Mannarino 6-4 6-3 7-6(5) on Wednesday to book his place in the third round of Wimbledon.The defending champion, aiming for his third consecutive title, played well within himself and was rarely troubled during the second-round match.Mannarino, ranked 55, put up spirited resistance in the third set to force a tiebreak but was ultimately swept off Centre Court by the Serbian’s laser-guided groundstrokes.World number one Djokovic holds all four grand slam titles and has another historic mark in his sights.The 29-year-old is aiming to become the first man since Rod Laver in 1969 to achieve the calendar Grand Slam – winning the four majors in a single season.