Sport Shorts The Diamond Star U11 AAU baseball team, coached by former professional pitcher Bill Lehman and Jim Muldowney, is in need of a pitcher and a catcher for the upcoming summer season. Please call (732) 398-1715 or (732) 821-0271 for more information. The Goodwill Ambassadors are currently accepting applications for high school teams, club teams and individual high school-age volleyball players, in the USA and Canada, to participate in the Goodwill Ambassadors Volleyball exchange to Europe in July 2004. Members of this team will represent their country and community in volleyball tournaments and local competitions in London, Paris, Geneva, Venice and Rome. The program is open to all players ages 15-20. School coaches and club team coaches — the coach travels free with their team of 10 or more. For additional information, call (425) 255-8102. The Central Jersey Predators, a Premier U11 travel baseball organization, is seeking one or two quality players to fill out the fall 2003 roster. Interested players must possess advanced baseball skills (advanced pitching skills a plus) and not turn 12 before Aug. 1, 2003. The Predators are based in Millstone, but there are no residency requirements. Those interested in scheduling a tryout should call (732) 625-0959 or (609) 259-8701 or e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. Middletown Youth Athletic Association fall baseball and softball will run from Sept. 2 to Oct. 26 for ages 5-18 (league age is participant’s age as of July 31, 2004). The fee is $50 (late fee is $20 after Aug. 1). Little League baseball and softball in-person registration at the MYAA field house at Bodman Park will be held July 12 from 9 a.m. to noon, and July 18 from 8-10 p.m. For mail-in registration forms, visit the Web site www.eteamz.com/middletownll. Pay with credit card (service fee additional). For more information call (732) 747-2410 and leave a message or e-mail email@example.com. In what may have been the greatest game in Mac’s Fun Ball Basketball League (Middletown) history, the Lions held off a ferocious comeback by the Celtics on Friday to get an important 92-89 double-overtime win. Cody Chalmers and Mike Niesz led the way with 42 and 32 points, respectively. In the second game, Billy Garrison led a balanced Titan team to a 73-64 win over the Rockets. Bob Miller led all scorers with 21 points. In the night cap, Kyle Costello scored 15 points and the constant hustle of Tom Fischer led the Eagles to a 69-50 win over the Colts. Sean Gilbertson led all scorers with 19 points, including five three-pointers. On Saturday, Anthony Garrido, last season’s Rookie of the Year, played an outstanding game to lead the Lions to a 79-77 win over the Titans, finishing with 12 points, eight assists and four steals. Justin Linkletter snatched 18 rebounds, and Sean Mulhern had a strong floor game for the Titans. In the second game, Tom O’Neal scored 14 points and John Schultz 12, as the Rockets beat the Eagles, 60-49. Nicky Rufo and Tom Passaforo had good games for the Eagles. Tatum Park, Holland Road, Middletown, will host the Woods Hollow Classic Mountain Bike Race on Aug. 2. The event, sponsored by the Monmouth County Park System, is ideal for both beginner and sports mountain bikers. The course winds through open fields and woodlands. The year’s race will be divided into two divisions — Beginner and Sport. The Beginner race, which starts at 8 a.m., is a 7.5-mile race; the Sport race starts at 9:30 a.m. and is an 11.25-mile race. Pre-registration fee is $16 for each category, and includes a commemorative shirt. Deadline for pre-registration is July 26. Race day registration is $20, and will accepted from 6:45-7:45 a.m. for the Beginner race, and 8:15-9:15 a.m. for the Sport race. All competitors must wear ANSI, ATSM or Snell approved helmets. For additional information, call the park system at (732) 542-1642. For persons with hearing impairment, the TDD machine number is (732) 219-9484. The Monmouth Power Sports Club and Icon Sports, Inc. will host the Fifth Annual Basketball Clinic Monday through Wednesday in Marlboro area schools. The camp is open to ages 10-17, and will run from 6-8:30 p.m. Cost is $90 per camper. Call (732) 833-5020 for additional information or e-mail Icon13@optonline.net. The Shore Athletic Club All-Comers Track and Field Meets, at Ocean Township High School, will be held throughout July starting at 6:15 p.m. Tonight, the events on tab are: the 200-meter dash, 1,500-meter run, one-mile walk, 800-meter run, 4×100 relay, long jump, shot put and discus. On July 16, the events are: the 100-meter dash, one-mile run, 400-meter run, one-mile walk, 4×200 relay, long jump, shot put and discus throw. On July 23, the events are: the 200-meter dash, 1,500-meter run, 600-meter run, one-mile walk, short sprint medley relay (200-100-100-400), long jump, shot put and discus throw. The meets will be staged in the following divisions: men’s and women’s open; boys and girls, 9 and under, 10-11, 12-14, 15-18; and men’s and women’s Masters, ages 40-49, 50-59, 60-69, and 70 and up division. Entry fees are $3 per meet. Volunteer officials are welcome. For additional information, call (732) 222-9080 or (732) 222-1348. Middletown Soccer Club is forming a new U8 boys/girls teams for this fall. Players must be born between Aug. 1, 1995 and July 31, 1996. For information on tryout times and dates, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call (732) 780-2155. Players who signed up previously should also call or check the Web site to get the latest information. There will be soccer tryouts for players seeking to compete at a premier level or above for U16, U17 and U18 for Hazlet Select at the Union Avenue Field. The tryouts will take place every Wednesday in July from 6-8 p.m. The team is professionally trained and will compete in showcase tournaments as well as the MAAPS League. For more information, contact trainer Phil Fluhr at (732) 566-3908. Back for its second year, the Lions Pride Basketball Camp will host three weeks this summer: July 14-18, July 21-25 and Aug. 4-8. The camp runs from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. and is held at Middletown High School North. Camp director is Will Mayer, the head boys basketball coach at Middletown North. The cost is $110 for one week, and discounts apply for more than one week. Enrollment is limited to 60 campers to ensure quality of instruction. Call (732) 306-4015 or e-mail mayerw@middletownK12.org for more information.
ATLANTIC CITY – The New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association, Boardwalk Hall and B2 Networks, for the first time ever, will broadcast the NJSIAA’s state wrestling finals around the world via B2 Networks. This historic event will take place from Atlantic City’s Boardwalk Hall on Sunday, beginning at 2 p.m. One of New Jersey’s most anticipated and exciting annual athletic competitions, the NJSIAA New Jersey High School Wrestling Championships, return to Boardwalk Hall on Friday. More than 38,000 participants and attendees are expected to be on hand throughout the four sessions. Through a partnership with B2 Networks LLC, based in Las Vegas, fans that are unable to attend Sunday’s 2 p.m. championships can click on the “Watch the Wrestling Live” icon at the Boardwalk Hall Web site, www.boardwalkhall.com, or the event Web site, www.njsiaa.org to purchase and watch the event. The broadcast is available to viewers for a charge of $10. A high speed internet connection and a current version of Windows Media Player are required to view the event. “We are extremely proud to be able to broadcast the NJSIAA Wrestling Championships on our network,” said Greg P. Bell, B2 Networks Owner and CEO. “High school athletics creates a unique atmosphere where family, friends and entire communities rally together. B2 is happy to provide a live broadcast for those who cannot attend in person.” B2 Networks is a premier provider of reliable and secure international television and video broadcasting systems, pay per view and billing systems. Its network of arenas, stadiums, local venues, billing systems and data centers are currently in use to distribute live events to computer and television screens around the world. For more information about B2 Networks, visit www.b2now.com.
BY WARREN RAPPLEYEAStaff Writer With the bulk of its starting lineup back, the Mater Dei High School softball team is looking to improve upon the 13-8 record it posted a year ago and contend for the Shore Conference Class B Central title. The Seraphs are coming off the best defensive showing in team history; Mater Dei’s fielding percentage was a glittering .967, and coach Jeanne Dickinson expects her team to be as good if not better with the gloves this spring. The team’s lone defensive meltdown came against Bishop Eustace in the NJSIAA Parochial B South semifinal when the Seraphs uncharacteristically committed seven miscues. “This is an excellent fielding team; they’re aggressive and smart,” Dickinson said. “We rarely give away runs. The only time it happened was in the state playoffs and that was just one of those games.” Steady Jamie Coppa at first base and junior Lauren Florio at third give the Seraphs strength at the corners. Junior shortstop Tess Gagliano and sophomore second baseman Kristin Philpot are sure-handed as well. Junior Elyse Parker, who volunteered to move from second base to catcher last season, returns behind the dish. Lefty-hitting sophomore Katie O’Brien is in reserve. Speedy Danielle Murphy, a sophomore, patrols center field, flanked by junior Lauren McKeown in right field and sophomore Jessie Sobko in left field. Freshman Danielle Locicero provides outfield depth. In addition, versatile junior Erin Carroll, who transferred from St. John Vianney, can do a little bit of everything: play outfield, infield and catch. Mater Dei lost ace pitcher Lara Vega, who will play at Georgian Court University this spring, to graduation, but junior Sara Cline will more than fill the void. A transfer from Keyport, Cline combines good speed and control on the hill. Amy Brandon will also see time on the mound. Although the Seraphs occasionally had difficulties in pushing runs across, plenty of players can hit. Philpot is coming off a .370 campaign with a homer, four triples and 20 RBIs. Gagliano whacked a pair of round-trippers, drove home 23 runs and stole eight bases, while batting .320. Florio also hit .320, and struck out just once in 59 at-bats. Brandon, who will DH or play the outfield when not pitching, ended up at .353. McKeown and Parker both started off slowly but gradually rounded into form. McKeown finished at .310 and Parker ended up at .255. Dickinson also expects Cline to contribute offensively. “We don’t have a lot of power, but our girls generally get the ball in play,” the coach said. “My main offensive goal this year is to be more productive. We need to find more ways to score some runs and take some of the pressure off our pitching and defense. Last year we had some games where we just couldn’t score, and this team hits too well for that to happen.” Thus far, the Seraphs have played to a 1-1 mark, with four games – against Asbury Park, St. Rose, Keansburg and Henry Hudson Regional – on the slate for this week. Mater Dei needs to get off to a good start, as the schedule is loaded with divisional games early on. “We’ll know a lot about where we stand after the first two weeks,” said Dickinson, whose team finished third in B Central last year behind St. Rose and Shore. “Six of (their first seven) games are in our division, so it’s important that we get off to a good start. Last year we showed that we can play with anyone. We’ve never won a state title, and we’d like to change that this year.” BY WARREN RAPPLEYEA Staff Writer
BY WARREN RAPPLEYEA Staff Writer Two years ago, the Middletown High School South girls tennis team won just one match. A year ago, the Eagles won five times, this time around coach Pat Ouellette’s team has already hit the five-win mark. The Eagles are 5-6 overall, but more important, Middletown South has been a competitive team this fall. Ouellette’s girls qualified for the Shore Conference Tournament and defeated Southern Regional in an opening-round match before falling to Shore Regional in the second round. North also qualified for the NJSIAA Central Jersey Group III tourney and was scheduled to square off against Freehold Borough on Tuesday in the opening round. The winner will meet Wall, likely on Friday. “The last two years have been struggle, but we’re starting to get back to where we want to be as team,” said Ouellette, whose teams frequently contend for the Shore’s A North crown. “This is a very young team and we still have a way to go. They have a lot of spunk and they work hard. So, I’ve been pretty pleased.” The Lions’ singles lineup comprises a pair of sophomores and a freshman. Christine Liu, a sophomore, holds down the first spot. Despite having to match up regularly against some of the Shore’s top players, Liu has posted a 5-6 mark —forcing Manalapan’s Ashley Klein to a tiebreaker before bowing. Liu relies on a strong, top-spin forehand and seems to get stronger as her matches go along. Julie Russell, meanwhile, has been solid in the second spot. The hard-hitting freshman is 6-5 and continues to improve in her first full season as a tennis player. Russell has displayed good footwork, a dangerous drop shot and a natural athletic ability, the coach said. At third, Jenna Kolakowski has battled her way through several tough contests. Along the way, the talented sophomore has developed a strong forehand and an accurate cross-court shot. Ouellette has been particularly pleased with the play of her doubles teams. Juniors Rebecca Handlin and Caitlin Stack are 4-4 in the first slot, including a victory over Manalapan that avenged their loss the first time the two teams played. Junior Lauren Stroz and sophomore Wendy Wei own an impressive 7-1 mark at second doubles and the two complement each other well. In Middletown South’s Shore tourney win over Southern, Stroz suffered an injury during the match. Sophomore Christine Conlon came off the bench and combined with Wei to score a 6-1, 4-6, 7-5 success. Conlon’s play provided an excellent example of the Lions’ depth, which also includes four seniors — Daria Akansu, Alyssa Teehan, Becky Truscott and Liz Stallmeyer — as well as juniors Page Fulton, Stephanie Keefe and Loren Lucyk, and sophomores Lydia Gunn and Emily Kazmac. With nine matches left, not including tournament play, Middletown South will have plenty of opportunities to add to its victory totals. “We want to continue rebuilding the foundation for next year and beyond,” the coach said. “The girls have done an excellent job so far, and we want to finish up strong.” Meanwhile, Ouellette, now in her 29th year of coaching, was recently voted the New Jersey State Coach of the Year by her fellow tennis coaches. She was also named Coach of the Year for the Northeast region by the National Federation of High School Coaches. In addition to her duties at South, Ouellette also coaches boys tennis at Middletown North.
Monmouth Women’s Basketball League, a competitive/recreational league, is looking for individual players and teams for the fall/winter 2009-10 season. All games are played Sunday night at the SalvationArmy community Center gym in Red Bank October through March. All players must be 18 yrs. old by Oct. 1, 2009. Call 732-213-8216 or email MWSL2002@ yahoo.com for more information or signup.
By Nemanja BjedovMARCOS Baghdatis has been beaten 6-1 6-4 by fourth-seeded Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov in the Round of 16 of the Abierto Mexicano Telcel in Acapulco.This was Dimitrov’s fifth win over Baghdatis in their six meetings, in a match which lasted just over an hour.After this win Dimitrov secured at least 90 ranking points which could help him break into the Top 20 once again, while Baghdatis could also improve his ranking.The 28-year-old Cypriot secured 45 points at this 500-event. He is currently ranked 149th with 365 points.In the quarter-finals, Dimitrov will now take on in-form Latvian Ernest Gulbis who defeated him two weeks ago in Rotterdam at the same stage of the tournament, while Baghdatis is expected to feature in the qualifiers for the first Masters event of the season – the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells.
By Staff ReporterFOOTBALL Association (CFA) chairman Costakis Koutsokoumnis has his fair share of detractors, but he may have found a rare sympathiser in Loukas Fanieros.Fanieros, who runs Ermis football club, currently in the top division, has come to Koutsokoumnis’ defence.Speaking to the Sigmalive news outlet, Fanieros suggested that the CFA boss, whatever his shortcomings, is unfairly being cast as the villain of Cypriot football.“I think we have got the wrong end of the stick. A lot is happening against the CFA chairman and he cannot fulfil his duties as he would have liked.“He and his family are threatened, five bombs were planted against him, and no one breaks a sweat,” Fanieros said.“He is under tremendous pressure. A bomb is planted against him, but the next day it’s as if nothing happened. Instead of protecting him and catching the perpetrators, the police are concentrating on computers, red files and discovering the wheel.“They are allowing him to be the object of prey and pushing him to resign,” the Ermis chairman added.“The CFA chairman has my support, but he needs to change tactics. Mr. Koutsokoumnis is trying through all of this to satisfy everyone. I think he cannot operate as he’d like to. They have turned him into the worst person in Cyprus. Koutsokoumnis is blamed for everything. If the Cyprus problem isn’t solved, they’ll blame that on him too,” Fanieros remarked.The Ermis club chairman is the son of convicted felon and suspected gambling kingpin Antonis Fanieros. The elder Fanieros was the target of a gangland hit in 1997 when he took a bullet to the neck in a drive-by shooting. Loukas Fanieros himself was also the target of a hit in 1998 but escaped injury.Koutsokoumnis has lately been in the spotlight after allegations of match-fixing brought by referee-turned-whistleblower Marios Panayi.In a press conference late last year, Panayi named CFA deputy chief Yiorgos Koumas as the man behind the extensive match-fixing. On Koutsokoumnis, Panayi said that he was a “strawman who does as he is told.”The referee’s allegations have since led to a police investigation.Ermis was one of a number of Cypriot clubs cited by Belgian-based match fixing watchdog Federbet, in its annual report on Europe issued last June.Cyprus had seven games flagged, based on irregular betting patterns. One of the matches was the Ermis Aradippou versus Kouklia FC on September 30, 2013 (Ermis won 5-2).
Apoel regained a firm grip on the Cyprus football championship after beating Omonia 1-0 to move seven points clear at the top of the table. The two chasing teams, Apollon and AEK, both lost to Anorthosis and AEL respectively. In the Relegation Group, Aris have been sucked into the scrap following their loss to Ermis and they are now just three points above Doxa, who earned a point against Ethnikos in an entertaining 3-3 draw.A goal in the fourth minute by Lorenzo Embecilio was enough to give Apoel the three points against bitter local rivals Omonia. Embecilio, who was making his first league start following his January move, powered in a free-kick from near the corner flag that somehow went past a number of players before beating Omonia goalkeeper Panayi at his near post.Apoel were by far the better side in the opening 45 minutes, controlling play and carving out a number of goal-scoring opportunities.Omonia were poor. They had to wait until the 34th minute for their first serious assault on Apoel’s goal, while in the second half, even though they had more of the ball, they managed just one goal attempt, a fierce shot from inside the penalty area from Christophi that Apoel goalkeeper Waterman managed to tip over the post.AEL’s new coach Bruno Baltazar made it two out of two as his team defeated championship hopefuls AEK thanks to two goals by Mikel Arruabarrena, the second in added time.The Limassol team got off to a lively start and took the lead in the 18th minute through Arruabarrena after AEK’s keeper had spilled Airossa’s cross. AEK replied though Florian ten minutes before the breakIn the second half AEK pushed forward searching for the winner and AEL goalkeeper Romo had to be alert on a couple of occasions, first to stop Mitrea putting through his own goal and then tipping over a rasping shot by Malokou.Arruabarrena though had the last word as he ghosted into the box in added time to slip the ball past Giorgallides for the winner.A spirited Anorthosis caused an upset at the Antonis Papadopoulos on Saturday as they comfortably beat Apollon 3-1. The win was all the more important as Apollon were unbeaten in league and cup games since October 2016.Anorthosis raced into a 2-0 lead by half-time with the usually reliable Apollon goalkeeper Bruno Vale at fault with the opening two goals scored by Errero and Rayos. An own goal by Pelaghias 20 minutes from the end extended Anorthosis’ lead and all but ended the tie as a contest.All that Apollon could manage was to pull a goal back through Papoulis in the 75th.Ermis Aradippou fought back to defeat struggling Aris 2-1. Aris had taken the lead just before the break though a Martins penalty but de Melo equalised just after half-time with a great solo run, with Martynyuk getting the winner with five minutes left.Doxa and Ethnikos shared the spoils in a 3-3 draw with all the goals coming in a frantic first half with Braulio (2) and Eninful scoring for Doxa and Kipiani, Zelayia and Kyprianou the Ethnikos scorers.In the final game, Karmiotissa pulled six points clear of the relegation zone after defeating Nea Salamina 2-0.Marco Adamovic opened the scoring with a thunderbolt from just outside the area while Polianec made sure of the points with a deft finish in the 82nd minute.Highlights
Manchester United have set their sights on winning the Europa League as an alternative route into next year’s Champions League, defender Luke Shaw has said ahead of the first leg of their quarter-final against Anderlecht on Thursday.United are fifth in the Premier League, four points behind Manchester City, who occupy the final qualifying spot for next season’s Champions League.The Europa League winners, however, also qualify for the Champions League.“Every single game is massive now, but I think the one on Thursday is huge,” Show told British media. “We have to treat every game in that competition now like it’s a final. We want to win that tournament.“The Europa League is a massive thing for us now – it’s a trophy and it gives us qualification for the Champions League. With the players we have got, we can be unstoppable.”Captain Wayne Rooney will miss the match due to an ankle injury, manager Jose Mourinho said on Wednesday.The England forward, who has sat out United’s last two matches, did not travel to Brussels for the game.“He is not happy with his condition,” Mourinho told reporters.“He has bad feelings with his ankle and he’s not ready to play. Let’s see for the weekend, let’s see for next week. We don’t have many players and need everyone to try to be available.”United right-back Antonio Valencia should be fit to return after missing the last two games and Mourinho said his side would have to be at their best against dangerous opponents.“They are a good team and have a certain way of playing, adapted to the qualities of their players,” he said.“They play well, press well and have talented players. I think we have to play at our best level.“When a team arrives at this stage of the competition, everyone feels it’s possible to win it. The motivation is high for everyone.“We still have two open doors (for Champions League qualification) and my feeling is that we are really going to fight in both competitions,” Mourinho said. “Honestly, I have a special feeling with the Europa League, it’s a competition we can win.”
The controversial Gatlin came into the final on a 28-race unbeaten run and apparently relishing his role as the sport’s bad guy.But at the same Bird’s Nest stadium in Beijing where Bolt announced himself to the world with two Olympic golds and two world records in 2008, the Jamaican superstar came past a faltering Gatlin at the death to snatch victory by one hundredth of a second.Bolt’s 9.79 seconds was more than two tenths off his world record, but this was a night for athletics to celebrate victories rather than times.Canada’s Andre de Grasse and young American Trayvon Bromell were both awarded bronzes in 9.92secs.Few noticed. This was once again the Bolt show, even as the world doubted him, even as his own struggles this summer continued in a semi-final when he stumbled and almost fell.Gatlin had looked unbeatable in running 9.77secs in his own semi-final, but starting out in lane seven – US team-mate Tyson Gay between him and Bolt in five – he was the slowest of the main contenders from the block. In every race this season his technique has been as certain as his reception has been chequered. Yet, with Bolt out faster and level with him at 50m, he tightened up horribly in the last 30 metres and staggered through the line as Bolt flew through.The characterisation of this showdown as good versus evil was always overplayed. Neither is it redemption for a sport when the final contained three other men who have also returned from doping bans.Yet it is another reminder, if any were needed, of both Bolt’s peerless competitive and athletic abilities and how much his sport owes him. Reigning Olympic and world champion Bolt had struggled for form throughout 2015, with his best time of the year coming into the final a run of 9.87secs at London’s Anniversary Games in July.”This means a lot because I’ve been struggling all season, it’s taken me a while to work things out,” Bolt told BBC Sport.”It’s been up and down but it’s OK now.”