By tim morris Staff Writer FARRAH MAFFAI Holmdel’s Craig Segal crosses the finish line in 15:32.10 to win the Shore Conference Championship at Ocean County Park on Saturday. Two days before the Shore Conference Cross Country Championships, Holmdel’s Craig Segal and his teammates worked out on the Ocean County Park course which was to be the site of the 2001 championships. The Monmouth County champion used the time to check the course out strategically, to see where runners could most likely strike. With no blind turns where a runner could get away and hide from the field, and no distinguishing hills as at Holmdel Park where he could make a push, Segal decided that the signature point on the course would be the final 150 meters. It’s just after the runners have run around the creek that surrounds the park. There is a short uphill, and then the 150-meter straight-away to the finish. That is where the Hornet determined the race would be won. On race day, however, the outcome was decided well before Segal climbed that brief uphill. As he has all fall, Segal beat his opponents using a long, sustained drive over the final mile of the 5,000-meter (3.1-mile) race, a drive that takes the bite out of his challengers’ finishing kick. “When you make a move, it has to be final,” said Segal. “Right before two miles, I decided that it was time to move. It was an instinctive move.” FARRAH MAFFAI Middletown South’s Nicole Lombardy crosses the finish line at 18:45.60, good enough for third at the Shore Conference Championships at Ocean County Park on Saturday. Segal had sensed that the time was right to make his push and his instincts were correct. Toms River North’s Pete Hess, who had been running in tandem with Segal from the front, did not respond and made the fatal mistake of letting the Hornet open up a gap that the Mariner would never be able to close. The flat Ocean County course was very conducive to fast running and Segal cranked out the fastest 5K at Ocean County Park this year, 15:32.1. Hess followed in second at 15:38.2 and Toms River South’s Eddie Baynes, the Ocean County champion who never made a run at the lead, was third (15:53.2). Segal’s time was 22 seconds faster than Baynes’ when he beat Hess at the Ocean County meet. Segal couldn’t have scripted the race any better than it played out for him as he became the first Hornet to win the SC cross country championship. “I planned to hang behind Hess throughout the race,” he said. “I never raced him before, but I had heard how he ran the Ocean County race from the front, and I expected that he would take it out and that Baynes would make his move late. “I felt really good throughout the race,” he added. “There were so many people around the course. It was overwhelming.” For the second time this year, Christian Brothers Academy saw a 19-year winning streak come to an end. At the Monmouth County Championships it was Red Bank Regional stunning the Colts. At the SC, it was Toms River North, Ocean County’s top team, confirming its top 10 state ranking that lifted the crown from CBA. The Mariners, led by Hess, topped both RBR (98) and CBA (99) with its 70-point total. William Melofchik led the Colts with his sixth place (16:01.3). Patrick Ryan was 13th (16:17.1) and Jeff Peterson, 15th (16:19). Holmdel finished fourth (108). Paul Merces (16:29.7) was second to Segal for the Hornets, finishing in 18th place. Leonard Vignone (16:32.7) and Edward Li (16:37.9) ran 20th and 22nd. Middletown South’s Dan Ciambrone joined the conference elite by finishing seventh (16:03.3). His teammate Sean Rath (16:43.6) was 25th as the Eagles finished fifth (153). St. John Vianney’s Victor Vientos (16:32.5) was 19th. Middletown South’s girls (106) were first among the Monmouth County teams, beating the 2001 champion Red Bank Catholic (136), but it only got the Eagles a third place against the powerful Ocean County tandem of champion Southern Regional (87) and Toms River East (102). Southern is ranked third in the state and Toms River East, eighth. Nicole Lombardy led the way as she has all year. The Monmouth County champion finished third overall after posting an 18:45.6. Rumson-Fair Haven’s Christy Planer, who was second to Lombardy at the county championships, turned the tables on Lombardy with a convincing win over Southern’s Kegga Schaffer, 18:30.1-18:39.5. Tina Morrison ran a strong race for the Eagles, coming up with a top 10 finish. Her 19:21.6 was good enough for ninth place. Rickie Lee DeMaio was the Eagles’ No. 3 runner finishing 28th (20:12.6). Holmdel’s Ashley Folchetti (19:58.2) and SJV’s Laura Carpenter (16:59) were 21st and 22nd. Saturday it’s the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association Group state championships at Holmdel Park. Here, Segal will face his greatest challenge of the season, Haddonfield’s Chris Platt. Haddonfield is the top-ranked team in the state and Platt is rated one of the two or three best runners in the state. Segal can join the group at the top with a win against Platt. CBA will be looking to hold onto its Parochial A state championship. The Colts have won six straight parochial titles. The top 10 individuals and top three teams (plus wild cards) will advance from Saturday’s Group meets to the Meet of Champions on Nov. 17 at Holmdel Park.
For the second consecutive week, Monmouth University, West Long Branch, couldn’t hold on to an early lead and went down to a gridiron defeat in the Hawks home opener, 32-13, to Sacred Heart of New York. Ryan Peterson’s school-record 46-yard field staked Monmouth (0-2) to a quick 3-0 edge, and then the Hawks built on it when Bill Rankin hooked up with Billy Lynch on a 43-yard scoring strike. With the PAT, Monmouth led 10-0 in the first. It was downhill from there, however, as the defending Northeast Conference Champions tied the game in the second quarter and outscored Monmouth 15-3 in the third quarter to take charge. The big play for Sacred Heart (1-1) was a defensive touchdown in the second quarter. With Monmouth leading 10-3 and driving, Pete Athans intercepted a Rankin pass and returned it 52 yards for a touchdown. That enabled the Pioneers to tie it at 10-10 at halftime. The Pioneers scored on the opening drive of the second half as quarterback Joe Kroells hit Doug Geoffrey on a 48-yard touchdown pass. Sacred Heart added a two-point conversion as holder Andy Gonzalez fond Mike Pesier in the end zone. Peterson’s second field goal of the game closed the deficit to 18-13. But on their next possession, the Pioneers scored on Marlon Ward’s fumble recovery in the end zone. Tailback Jason Bonadies was caught from behind as he was nearing the end zone and fumbled the ball after he was hit by Monmouth’s Joe Billups. The Hawks stripped Bonadies of the ball, but Ward was in the right place at the right time to fall on the fumble and the resulting TD. Sacred Heart added to its 25-13 lead in the fourth quarter when Bonadies, who gained 107 yards on 23 carries, scored on a 12-yard run. Rankin was 15-41 for 183 yards and one touchdown. But he was intercepted three times and sacked twice. Lynn caught five of his passes for 74 yards. Billy Smith, Monmouth’s leading rusher, left the game in the first quarter with a sprained ankle. Joe Migliore led Monmouth in rushing with 65 yards on 20 carries. In their season opener at Lafayette College, the Hawks flew out to a 16-0 lead in the second quarter, only to lose 30-29 on a late field goal. Monmouth hits the road Saturday night for a nonconference game with Morgan State University in Baltimore.
BY WARREN RAPPLEYEA Staff Writer PHOTOS BY FARRAH MAFFAI staff Above, Holmdel’s Christina Martorello goes up for a lay-up during the Hornets’ win over Old Bridge on Saturday. At left, Ashley Folchetti drives by Old Bridge’s Kaitlyn Calogera, as the Hornets beat the defending Greater Middlesex Conference champs, 59-42. Coming off a solid nonconference win over Old Bridge, the Holmdel High School girls basketball team is prepping for tomorrow’s Shore Conference Class B North matchup at Monmouth Regional. The Hornets, 6-3 overall, downed the Knights 59-42 as sophomore guard Christina Martorelli scored 20 points and Jackie Klatsky pumped in another 17. Point guard Ashley Folchetti had an outstanding game, scoring eight points, dishing out eight assists and making four steals. Holmdel was scheduled to meet Neptune, 7-1 and 3-0 in conference play, on Monday in another important tilt. The Hornets, on the heels of winning the NJSIAA Central Jersey Group III title last year while going 16-11, are expected to contend for the B North crown, as are both Neptune and Monmouth Regional. Holmdel finished second in the division a year ago. Thus far coach Dawn Karpell’s team has downed Raritan and Red Bank Regional in conference games, as well as Bayonne. Holmdel’s losses have come at the hands of Colts Neck, in the season opener, St. John Vianney and Perry, an Ohio school, in the KSA Holiday Tournament in Orlando, Fla. The Hornets finished second in the tourney. “We don’t have a lot of size so the keys for us are using our team speed, rebounding and taking care of the ball,” Karpell explained. “So far we’ve done pretty well on the boards, but we had a couple of games early where turnovers hurt us.” With a relatively young team in tow, the coach said she expects her players to cut down on turnovers as the season moves on. In addition, the presence of veterans like Folchetti and Klatsky lends a steadying hand. Folchetti has been a mainstay since her freshman year. Besides her offensive responsibilities she is an aggressive defender. Klatsky leads the team with a scoring average of 13 points and is the Hornets’ top three-point shooter. Another excellent defender, she also manages to pull down her share of rebounds. Holmdel has plenty of other talented players as well. Martorelli is a threat from the outside, as is senior Jasmin Rodriguez, who is averaging 10 points. Junior center Mary Orsini is the team’s top rebounder, pulling down six caroms per game, while averaging four points. Sophomore Ibayi Briggs also helps out under the hoop. The Hornets will be without sophomore Marissa Porto, who is out indefinitely with a sprained wrist. Porto alternates between guard and forward and averages eight points. Two freshmen, Ariel Redmond and Liz Mayell, who have played well off the bench, are likely to see more time in Porto’s absence. Karpell’s team has generally played well defensively. Holmdel employs the man-to-man, but takes advantage of its team quickness to press on occasion. “We have to play to our strengths,” the coach said. “That means doing little things like back-door cuts on offense and playing tight defense. The girls understand that; they’re working hard and it shows in our record.” Defending CJ Group III champs look strong early on BY WARREN RAPPLEYEAStaff Writer
Raritan boys hopingto earn another shotat tourney title Raritan boys hoping to earn another shot at tourney title BY DOUG McKENZIE Staff Writer PHOTOS BY CHRIS KELLY staff St. John Vianney’s Courtney Calderon scores on a breakaway during the Lancers’ win over St. Rose on Sunday at Brookdale Community College in the Lincroft section of Middletown. After two rounds of the upset-filled Shore Conference Girls Tournament, both top-seeded Marlboro and fourth-seeded St. John Vianney (SJV) entered yesterday’s action still standing tall. The Mustangs and Lancers avoided the rash of the upsets that had befallen other top seeds, and were poised to battle for the right to play for the tournament title. With their 52-44 win over Monmouth Regional at Brookdale Community College Sunday afternoon, the top-seeded Mustangs advanced to the semifinals for the fourth consecutive year. Awaiting the Mustangs there was St. John Vianney. Marlboro and SJV played last night in Toms River North’s new Ritacco Center with the winner advancing to Friday night’s final, also at Toms River (tipoff at 7 p.m.). CBA’s Brian Freiberger tries to grab a rebound during the Colts’ SCT second-round win over Marlboro on Feb. 20 in Middletown. St. John Vianney beat St. Rose, 42-30, in its semifinal. The Lancers used a balanced team effort to outlast the Purple Roses in what was a close game early, before SJV took the lead late in the first half and never looked back. The Lancers talented backcourt of freshman Alisa Apo and junior Shantel Brown were the top scorers for SJV with 12 points each, while Kristine Perez added nine. Courtney Calderon also earned praise from her teammates and coaches for her stellar defensive effort against St. Rose’s Liz Imbriacco, who finished with just three points. Yesterday’s matchup had all the anticipation of a heavyweight title fight, with most agreeing that the winner would be a heavy favorite to capture the tournament championship Friday night. The Mustangs had a score to settle with the Lancers. Two years ago, SJV edged the Mustangs in the SCT final, the first of two-straight heartbreaking losses in championship game for the Marlboro girls. Now seniors and playing with a sense of urgency, the Mustangs avoided the pitfalls that befell No. 2 seed and defending champion Red Bank Catholic, and No. 3 seed Rumson-Fair Haven last week. The Caseys lost to Toms River North at Brookdale, 47-43 on Sunday, while Rumson lost at home Friday to Toms River East, 43-36. While the Lancers feature a similar makeup and style as in years past, this is a different Marlboro team than the one that has lost the last two SCT finals. The senior quartet of Cole, Pollack, Jenna Gatto and Christie Kastner are playing like they have nothing to lose, as they did as freshmen. They have used the lower expectations of others as a motivation. They have also gone out of their way to get everyone else involved this year and have been providing encouragement. If the ‘Stangs need to go to the bench this year, they will be bringing in more confident players. Marlboro (20-2) has not lost to a Shore Conference opponent this winter, while Vianney seems to have used a recent loss to RBC as motivation once the postseason began. Meanwhile, the Raritan Rockets are cruising along in the boys tournament, and will make their second straight appearance in the semifinals tonight in Toms River. The Rockets simply dominated St. Rose at Red Bank Regional High School on Sunday en route to a 62-47 quarterfinal win. Using an early season loss to the Purple Roses as their motivation, the Rockets jumped out to an early lead and never looked back, displaying the type of depth and ability that has allowed them to be one of the Shore’s top teams all season. St. Rose simply couldn’t keep up with the Rockets’ multi-pronged attack, which was led once again by Marques Johnson (22 points), Mike Nunez (17) and Joe Reyes (14 points, 12 rebounds). It was the type of effort fans have come to expect from a Raritan team that has continually stepped up in the big spot this year. Next up is third-seeded Manasquan, a 78-73 winner over a good Freehold Township team on Sunday. The Warriors (19-1) were led by senior guard Tom White’s 22 points, while senior forward Kyle Laird added 17. Tonight’s contest is just another in a long line of tough games for the Rockets, who have persevered this year against one of the Shore’s most difficult schedules. They’ve answered every challenge thus far and are anxious to get back to the SCT finals after losing a tough contest to CBA in that spot last year. Speaking of which, the CBA team’s hopes of repeating as SCT champs came to an end on Sunday when they were upset by a red-hot Red Bank Regional team playing on its home court. The Bucs played inspired ball against the fourth-seeded Colts, and managed to hold off a late CBA charge to secure the win. This game was tight the entire way, until RBR used a 9-0 run in the fourth quarter to take charge. CBA (17-6) made it interesting when Dan Gallagher cut the lead to three with a trey with seven seconds left, but RBR managed to run out the clock and earn the trip to the semifinals, where it will face top-seeded Neptune, a 60-52 winner over Manchester on Sunday, tonight. This marks only the third time in 22 seasons that CBA has not reached the SCT semifinals. Unlike the girls tournament, in which most people feel the winner of the Marlboro-SJV game will more than likely claim the conference crown on Friday night, the boys final promises to be a great matchup regardless of tonight’s results. — Tim Morris contributed to this story BY DOUG McKENZIEStaff Writer
Freehold Township’s Stephen Talbott (No. 31) easily beats the throw as Middletown North’s Connor Delepine comes off first base during their game on April 11. Middletown North won the game, 14-6, as Delepine led the way, going 3-for-4 with three RBIs. CHRIS KELLY staff
The founder of the Ace Club, renowned pitching instructor Matt Sweeney, has expanded his instructional offerings and has developed The Advanced Pitching Academy. The program is designed to prepare pitchers for the skill-set and mindset necessary to succeed over the course of a long season through a baseline of proper mechanical and foundational strength development to ensure arm maintenance.The four-week instructional program begins on Oct. 8, and players can register at http://www.centraljerseybaseball.com/Player -Development-Programs.html.
By Iacovos ConstantinouTwo goals in extra time by substitute Andreas Papathanasiou sent Ermis through to the final of the Coca-Cola cup where they will now meet favourites APOEL on May 21.It was a historic day for underdogs Ermis Aradippou who defeated cup holders Apollon by 4-1 in a pulsating game. After a goalless first half Ermis took the lead through their top scorer Marco Tagbajumi just after the break. Their joy was shortlived as three minutes later a blunder by their keeper Nikolaos Arabadzis allowed Apollon’s Gaston Sangoy to level the score and put Apollon back on track.With six minutes on the clock however Ermis levelled the aggregate score and sent the game into extra time. With a goal either side of the extra time break team captain Papathanasiou made sure that Ermis’ fairy tale run would see them go all the way.Ermis coach Nikos Panayiotou was ecstatic after the game singing the praises for his unsung heroes. “Today we had passion, we had determination. This is just the beginning of much bigger things to come.” In an apparent jibe directed against the ‘bigger teams’ of Cyprus football he said, “today we played with our hearts, not with pockets full of money”.Their chairman Loukas Fanieros was equally happy and said that they have now proven that they are a team to be reckoned with. “We shall face APOEL in the final. They are a good team but we shall win the cup. All we need is a bit of luck,” he concluded.As expected APOEL had no problems in reaching the final despite fielding a completely different team from the one that faced Omonia on Saturday.In an almost empty Makario stadium APOEL put four past Doxa Katokopias (8-1 on aggregate) with Christos Pipinis, Cesar Santin and a brace from Aldo Adorno getting the goals.This is the thirtieth time that APOEL will feature in a cup final as opposed to Ermis’ first!
By Martyn HermanTHE tepid 0-0 draw in the Vicente Calderon resembled a phoney war but Chelsea and Atletico Madrid will surely up the ante at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday (9.45pm) when a place in the Champions League final is on the line.That semi-final first leg stalemate left Chelsea marginal favourites to progress although with no away goal in their pocket, Jose Mourinho’s side will be vulnerable against an Atletico side capable of much more than they produced at home.Atletico, closing in on a first Spanish league title since 1996, ran out of ideas against a resolute Chelsea rearguard in which John Terry and Gary Cahill spent most of the evening heading away hopeful crosses into the area.The Londoners are sweating on the fitness of Terry, who turned his ankle in the first leg and goalkeeper Petr Cech although both made a return to training yesterday. They will definitely be without suspended midfielders Frank Lampard and John Obi Mikel.Whoever plays, Atletico coach Diego Simeone needs a different game plan if his club are to reach the final for the first time since 1974.They enjoyed 64 per cent of the ball last week but leading striker Diego Costa barely got a sniff of a chance as the two sides effectively cancelled each other out.Simeone’s side, who have conceded the fewest goals in La Liga this season, have won their last nine Spanish top-flight games and are on a 14-match unbeaten run in all competitions.With a relatively thin squad he was unable to rest any of his regulars in the 1-0 win at Valencia at the weekend, although Gabi played down talk of heavy legs as the season reaches its climax.“We are up on a cloud from which we don’t want to get down,” Gabi, who will miss the second leg through suspension, told reporters. “The team has a level of conviction that has rarely been seen.”Simeone, however, issued a word of caution.“La Liga is nothing like the Champions League,” he said before referencing a weakened Chelsea’s 2-0 win at Premier League leaders Liverpool at the weekend.“Chelsea has a great team, the possibility of rotating and winning. We face a very powerful team that will make it very hard for us.”Mourinho is a past master at knocking teams off clouds and while Simeone will demand more imagination from his side at Stamford Bridge where an away goal could prove vital, Mourinho may elect to adopt the tactics that so stifled Atletico and Liverpool in the space of a few days.The onus is on Chelsea to score a goal this time but Mourinho is unlikely to become all gung-ho even if the creative talents of Eden Hazard and the scoring prowess of Samuel Eto’o are at his disposal after they missed the first leg injured.Former Porto and Inter Milan boss Mourinho is attempting to reach his third Champions League final with a third club, having fallen in three consecutive semi-finals while in charge of Real Madrid.He also lost semi-finals with Chelsea in 2005 and 2007 during his first spell in charge so no wonder he appears to have demoted his side’s Premier League challenge below that of winning the Champions League.Despite Mourinho playing down Chelsea’s Premier League title chances, forward Andre Schurrle believes otherwise.“Everybody thinks we can win the league and the Champions League,” the German said.. “We know it will be tough but we have to believe and we do.”
By Alan BaldwinLewis Hamilton battled back from an agonisingly slow start to win the Italian Grand Prix for Mercedes on Sunday and slash team mate Nico Rosberg’s Formula One championship lead to 22 points.Rosberg finished second as dominant Mercedes celebrated their first one-two since Austria in June and seventh in 13 races.With the sport taking a deep breath as the championship rivals lined up together on the front row, two weeks after they had collided in Belgium, the start provided an immediate sensation.Hamilton had taken pole position for the first time since May but problems with the car’s start mode left him struggling to get away and fourth into the first corner as Rosberg sped away untroubled.It was the start of a thrilling chase, with the 2008 world champion fighting back and retaking the lead on the 29th of 53 laps when Rosberg missed the first chicane as he had done earlier in the race.With the German under pressure and driving straight on, slowing and weaving to get back on track, Hamilton seized the lead in the decisive moment of the afternoon.The two crossed the finish line 3.1 seconds apart, with Hamilton celebrating his first win since Britain in July. It was his fifth of the season and 28th of his career, taking him ahead of triple champion Jackie Stewart in the all-time lists.“It was a difficult race,” said Hamilton. “For whatever reason, at the start the button didn’t press which engages the launch sequence.“For the formation lap it didn’t work and when I got to the grid and put it on again, again it didn’t work. It was very strange. I’ve never really had that happen before.“I tried to pull away as fast as possible and the RPM was all over the place. Fortunately I managed to not lose too many places.”Rosberg now has 238 points to Hamilton’s 216, with six races remaining after the end of the European part of the season.Brazilian Felipe Massa finished third for Williams, his first podium appearance since Spain last year with Ferrari, on Brazilian independence day and after the team had announced he was staying for 2015.The points, at the fastest track on the calendar, meant Williams leapfrogged Ferrari into third place in the constructors’ standings.In the absence of their current Ferrari heroes, the passionate home crowd welcomed their ex-driver’s appearance on the podium with cheers as they spilled out in a vast red wave onto the start/finish straight.Rosberg, blamed by his own team for the second lap Spa collision that led to Hamilton’s retirement from that race, was booed for the second grand prix in a row.Massa’s Finnish team mate Valtteri Bottas was fourth following another highly impressive day of overtaking after he had dropped from the second row to 10th at the end of the first lap.Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso retired from his team’s home race on lap 29 with a failure in the car’s energy recovery system, his first mechanical retirement in 86 races, while Kimi Raikkonen finished ninth.Until Sunday, Alonso was the only driver to have scored points in every race this season.Driver and constructor standings after the Formula One Italian Grand Prix at Autodromo di Monza on Sunday Drivers Points1. Nico Rosberg (Germany) Mercedes 2382. Lewis Hamilton (Britain) Mercedes 2163. Daniel Ricciardo (Australia) Red Bull 1664. Valtteri Bottas (Finland) Williams 1225. Fernando Alonso (Spain) Ferrari 1216. Sebastian Vettel (Germany) Red Bull 1067. Jenson Button (Britain) McLaren 728. Nico Huelkenberg (Germany) Force India 709. Felipe Massa (Brazil) Williams 5510. Kimi Raikkonen (Finland) Ferrari 41 Constructors Points1. Mercedes 4542. RedBull – Renault 2723. Williams-Mercedes 1774. Ferrari 1625. McLaren 1106. Force India – Mercedes 1097. Toro Rosso – Renault 198. Lotus – Renault 89. Marussia – Ferrari 210. Sauber – Ferrari 0
By Gideon LongMexico and Bolivia were booed off the pitch after playing out a drab goalless draw in their opening match of the Copa America on Friday, leaving hosts Chile top of Group A after the first round of matches.Bolivia hit the post through Ricardo Pedriel with their first real attack, and Mexican stiker Raul Jimenez should have scored after the break with a close range header, but otherwise neither side created much in the way of clear-cut chances.The Mexicans also had a penalty appeal turned down late on after Javier Aquino went down under pressure from Alejandro Pinedo.While on balance a draw looked to be a fair result, it was greeted by whistles and boos at the Sausalito stadium in Vina del Mar at the final whistle.Mexico have never defeated Bolivia at the Copa America in three attempts, though they have beaten them in each of their nine encounters in other competitions and friendlies.The Mexicans now face Chile in Santiago on Monday while Bolivia meet Ecuador in Valparaiso on the same day.Chile beat Ecuador 2-0 in the tournament opener on Thursday.“We know that Chile are coming off the back of a victory that will give them a bit of confidence, and they have some quality players, but so do we, and we’re going to work hard to beat them,” Mexico striker Jesus Corona said.After two slightly disappointing matches on the opening two days, the Copa is expected to come to life over the weekend when favourites Brazil and Argentina, along with defending champions Uruguay, all open their accounts.Uruguay face Jamaica in Antofagasta on Saturday, Argentina take on Paraguay in La Serena the same day and Brazil meet Peru in Temuco on Sunday