Runners on a marathon mission for good cause Pair will participate in San Diego Marathon for victim of leukemia JEFF HUNTLEY Caitlin Moscatello and Jenni Krystopowitz, juniors at Rumson-Fair Haven Regional High School, show off the wristband they will wear when they participate in the San Diego Marathon to help raise money for a Cherry Hill boy diagnosed with leukemia. Caitlin Moscatello and Jenni Krystopowitz will never have to go very far for inspiration as they prepare for the San Diego Marathon on June 3. All they have to do is look at their bracelets to remind them why they are subjecting themselves to one of the most grueling physical tests of athletics, running 26.2 miles. The Rumson Fair-Haven Regional juniors are runners with a mission. They are members of Team in Training, an organization of volunteer athletes who compete in endurance races to raise money for victims of leukemia and lymphoma. Their goal is to raise $10,000 for people suffering from these diseases and at the same time increase public awareness of them. Leukemia, for instance, kills more children under the age of 15 than any other disease. Krystopowitz and Moscatello are running for 8-year-old Ian Effron of Cherry Hill, who was diagnosed with lymphoblastic lymphoma in 1998. Fortunately, Ian is in remission at this time. But Ian is an example of how anyone can be stricken by the illness at any time. “It really can happen to anyone,” said Krystopowitz. “It makes you realize how lucky you are to be healthy.” Moscatello noted that being diagnosed with such a disease is a reality check. “When you realize it’s the No. 1 killer of teen-agers, it makes an impression,” she said. Moscatello and Krystopowitz have been in correspondence with Ian, and each has a bracelet with his name on it to remind them of why they are participating in the marathon. “We’ve both written to Ian and received responses from him,” Moscatello said. “We learned so much about him, how he likes playing soccer and is excited about what we are doing. That alone makes you want to do it.” Krystopowitz noted that corresponding with young Ian and getting to know him adds a personal touch to what they are doing. “It makes it more personal when you know who you’re running for,” she explained. “In most ways he’s like any 8-year-old. He has let us know that he’s happy with what we’re doing. “He’s an inspiration to us,” she added. “It’s motivation for those cold days when you don’t want to go out and run.” Moscatello and Krystopowitz will begin their training for the San Diego Marathon in earnest with Team in Training this week. The organization will provide them with an experienced trainer who will give them a program to follow in the months leading up to the marathon. At times, the Rumson teens will work out with other young Team in Training runners who are also preparing for the San Diego event. Krystopowitz and Moscatello have a background in distance running. They are members of Rumson Fair-Haven’s highly successful cross country team. The Bulldog girls won the Group I state championship in 1999, and last year, the team still ranked among the Top 10 in the state and won a Shore Conference division title. During this cross country season, Moscatello and Krystopowitz began training together for the marathon. They are familiar figures on the local roads. “When we go running, people recognize us and beep their horns,” Moscatello said. Staff Writer By tim morris
The Hazlet Babe Ruth League’s 13-year-old all-star team completed a successful summer with a 19-6 record, while winning their third District 11 title in a row. Many of the players have been together since they were 8 years old, coach Vinny DiCostanzi noted. The team really began making its mark as 11-year-olds when they won both the District 11 and the Babe Ruth state crowns. A year ago, Hazlet again won District 11 as 12-year-olds. As for DiCostanzi, he’s enjoyed coaching this group for the past few years, and is excited about watching them develop as ballplayers over the next few years. “It’s been a lot of fun watching these boys learn the game and develop their skills together,” DiCostanzi said. “They make coaching look easy.” This season, Hazlet again took the district title, and also won the Central Jersey Babe Ruth League championship, finishing in first place for the regular season then going on to win the playoffs. The team also qualified for the state championship, but were eliminated in two games. Hazlet relied on strong pitching and defense, and seemed to get enough hitting to get by, DiCostanzi said. Marc Zecchino and Frank DiRoma were the team’s top pitchers, while first baseman Chris Clayton and Zecchino were Hazlet’s best hitters. Other members of the team included pitcher/catcher Brian Malloy, first baseman/outfielder Glenn Davis, center fielder J.C. Connell, infielders Kevin Boehler and Tom Petry, and outfielders Alex Wanless, Victor Scanzini and Bob VanFechtman. Wanless also saw time behind the plate. Clayton, Connell, and Scanzini also pitched. Frank DiRoma Sr., Pat Zecchino and John Petry served as assistant coaches. — Warren Rappleyea
BY WARREN RAPPLEYEAStaff Writer PHOTOS BY CHRIS KELLY staff Above left, runners take off from the starting line along scenic Broad Street during Saturday’s George Sheehan Classic in Red Bank. Above, weary competitors approach the finish line. Below, Keyport’s Jody Benedict eyes the finish, while below left, Matawan’s Brian Sims does the same. About 2,500 runners competed in the George Sheehan Classic 5-miler in Red Bank on what turned out to be a pleasant Saturday morning. That was the goal of race organizers last year when they moved the event to Father’s Day weekend from the second Saturday in August to get away from the stifling summer heat. Yet the heat came out early a year ago. This time around conditions were excellent. “It was a great day to run. The weather was cool and that’s what we wanted,” said race director Phil Hinck, who also reported that there were no injuries during the race. “People are getting smarter and the weather certainly helped there too. Let’s knock on wood that this kind of weather continues.” As usual, Kenyan runners again dominated the race. Isaac Arusei burst out in from about a half-mile from the finish to win the men’s division in 22:50, holding off a late rush by Ronald Mogaka, who finished two seconds behind. In the women’s division Eunice Chepkirui crossed the finish first with a time of 27:28. Hinck noted that entries were slightly down from last year, but the race director expects the numbers to go up again since the June date occurs before many families go on vacation and also because of the family nature of the event. The Kids Classic, a series of races for youngsters held on Friday night, drew several hundred participants, and a pasta party and runners’ forum, also held Friday evening, were well-attended. In addition, there is a postrace barbecue. All runners who finish receive medals. Hinck noted that the event could not be held without the cooperation from the communities of Red Bank, Little Silver and Fair Haven. The course begins and ends on Broad Street and winds through each of the towns. More than 200 volunteers provided invaluable assistance, he said. “We view this as a fun-family event, and the goal is to continue making it better,” Hinck said. BY WARREN RAPPLEYEA Staff Writer
The Atlantic Baseball Confederation Collegiate League (ABCCL) is looking for host families in Monmouth and Ocean counties for June and July. Anyone interested in hosting a player may call the ABCCL at (732) 500-0634 for additional information. Twenty-one former ABCCL players have signed professional contracts. Each host family provides their guest with a place to sleep. The guest joins the family at meals when he is present, but he will miss at least 50 percent of family meals because of baseball games, practice, work and social activities. He will be responsible for his own meals for those times. The guest will have his own car, or a carpool will be set up to take him to work and his games. Many of the league’s players were all-state athletes in several sports, and they will be happy to teach any children in the host family some of the finer points of the various sports. Guests are between 18 and 21 years of age and are serious student-athletes from universities who were recommended to the league by their coaches. Each guest has a scholarship and is in New Jersey to play competitive baseball to improve his skills and prepare him for his next season. Baseball and work will keep him very busy. The guest will do his own laundry and will need to use his host family’s washer and dryer three times a week to keep his uniform clean. If the host family is going away on vacation, the organization will provide temporary accommodations for their guest until the family returns. Guests will arrive at the end of May and leave the first week in August.
Middletown South’s girls basketball team had another great season to remember, going 19-6 against a brutal schedule and reaching the NJSIAA Group III Central Jersey finals before losing to Neptune for the second straight year, 48-29. But it was the leadership and determination of senior captains Kerry Healy and Kelly Scheurer that set the tone for a program that has gone 77-25 the last four years combined. “I like these seniors who came through the program,” said Tom Brennan, who has coached there the past 14 seasons. “They’ve been there from when we started this run that included a division championship in 2006-07, and being part of our legacy of reaching the sectional semifinals for the past four years.” Junior guard Meghan McGuinness, another captain, led the team in scoring at 16 points per game. Kerri Kinsella, a junior who was the tallest starter at 5-8, had the second best scoring average at 8.5 points per game (ppg), and junior point guard Kelly Haspeth showed poise with the ball in rounding out the lineup, scoring 11 against Neptune’s high-pressure defense that turned around the sectional championship game. But it was the leadership of seniors and best friends Healy and Scheurer that got the team through the challenging times. “I think it was just great team chemistry,” said Healy. “It kept us believing in each other.” And no one showed greater faith than Scheurer, who tore an anterior cruciate ligament in a game against Middletown North midway through her junior season. “I was on the sidelines and had to be a leader [there],” she said. “I didn’t know if I would come back and then I got so much support.” Not only did Scheurer come back, but she also drew the toughest defensive assignment on the team this season, consistently playing against taller players and often the best player on the opposing team. “I just got stronger,” said Scheurer. “This year, I put my body on the line. I think everyone saw I was little but I still have the forward’s mentality. I knew I could have the forward’s mentality. I knew I could body up against bigger girls and that someone on the team would have my back.” “She’s a 5-foot-4 [inch] forward, a special kid who just willed things to happen,” said Brennan. “I knew she was a little overmatched physically and athletically but it was her desire. She shut down bigger players, which allowed our other players to get to the outside on defense.” It impressed Scheurer’s best friend, Healy, who often had her back, as she put it. “I think she was playing great against girls bigger and stronger and she did whatever she could to help the team,” said Healy. Healy likewise impressed her coach who said she “has a motor, an enormous passion getting after a loose ball.” Both players felt the team likewise achieved more than was expected against tough odds, finishing second in the division behind Colts Neck. A victory over Rumson- Fair Haven for the second straight year again was a turning point and showed last year’s surprising victory over Rumson was no fluke, they said. “I think we went above everybody’s expectations,” said Scheurer. “People did not expect us to beat Rumson again.” People other than the Eagles according to Healy. “I don’t think what we did this season was surprising,” said Healy. “We just made it fun and kept going. A lot of people doubted us.” With five losses coming to teams ranked in the top 10 in the state polls at the time, Middletown South certainly proved itself and Brennan attributed the success to the team’s being “pretty steady defensively” all season, holding Neptune to its season-low points as well as holding Holmdel to its season low in a 37-29 victory in the state section semifinals. “I was proud of our team even though we didn’t score much,” said Brennan. “We hunkered down on the defensive side of the ball.” And there is a bright future with only one other senior graduating off this team in guard Nicole Trapasso. Three freshmen also were in the rotation, including guards Carissa Gray and Kiera Gannon, who measured 5-8, and forward Jackie Dlhui, who is 5-9. “The freshmen were more like juniors but they were not used to playing so many minutes,” said Brennan. “They hit the wall for that like many young players do and broke through it and played better at the end.” If the young players can show the determination of the graduating seniors like Scheurer, Middletown South can continue to enjoy successfully long seasons. BY WAYNE WITKOWSKI Staff Writer
The Raritan High School football team has battled through a tough start to the season, playing two games that finished with six-point margins. In their last game, the Rockets defeated Red Bank Regional, 35-34, in a match that went into double overtime. They have almost come to expect close games. “We went the distance and a little more,” said head coach Anthony Petruzzi, whose team is coming out of a bye week with a 3-2 record. “We were upset when we gave up the lead, but we were excited about coming back.” Petruzzi believes his team has shown the ability to climb back into games but must also play entire games with that comeback spirit. “I personally think it is an attitude,” he said. “We have to play a complete game. We’ve seen how close games go and what it takes to win. When we are out there with a certain attitude, we execute. We have lost that attitude from time to time. For us, it’s never about quitting, just losing focus and attitude. Our guys do have a lot of character.” After losing two games, against Matawan and St. John Vianney, the victory against Red Bank Regionalwas crucial if the Rockets expect to make a run this season. “We now have more confidence going into the game with Rumson-Fair Haven. Hopefully we learned our lesson,” Petruzzi said. “Part of getting to the state tournament is winning our next game,” Petruzzi added, referring to Raritan’s game at home against Rumson-Fair Haven on Saturday afternoon at 1 p.m. “We are taking it one game at a time.” The Rockets were happy to have the opportunity to regain their health during their bye week. On the field, the team is concentrating on taking care of their own future. Petruzzi reminds his team to stick to their philosophies. “We need to concentrate on ourselves, and take care of our own issues. We also need to execute on offense,” Petruzzi said. When it comes to the team’s tendency to play close games, Petruzzi does not feel it will be a problem. “Nothing bad is coming out of close games. We are learning to play tight games, and we have had positive and negative experiences,” he said. “We are looking for the kids to fight back against a momentum change,” Petruzzi added. “Every phase of the team has had breakdowns. We had opportunities to finish games and missed those opportunities. The last play is never the play that decides the game.” BY MATTHEW ROCCO Correspondent
Staff Writer BY NEIL BORENSTEIN The Christian Brothers Academy (CBA) ice hockey team targeted a return to the NJSIAA Non-Public championship game all season and was one win away from a rematch against Delbarton School when the season came to a screeching halt on March 6. The Colts fell to Don Bosco Preparatory School in the semifinals, 5-3.“Immediately following the game, when you enter the locker room, you see players burying their heads in their jerseys crying,” head coach Ryan Bogan said. “Underclassmen and seniors alike understand that their high school season has ended in unfulfilled terms … It’s a hard pill to swallow.”The game marked the fourth time this season that CBA played Don Bosco. The Colts owned a 2-1 advantage in the season series with a victory in the Gordon Cup semifinals, 3-2, and an earlier season matchup on Jan. 17, 2-1. The Ironmen took a Jan. 2 contest, 6-4.“We knew this was going to be tough,” Bogan said. “We played them three times already, and the goal differential was zero. Bosco matched up well against us, and it worked for them.”The Ironmen jumped out to an early lead in the state semifinals and ended the first period sporting a two-goal lead. Jim Rainey added to the lead with just over five minutes remaining in the second period, but the Colts chipped away at the deficit when senior forward Glenn Florczak, who is an alternate captain, notched an unassisted tally 37 seconds later. Junior forward Brendan van Riemsdyk brought CBA to within one when he scored off an assist from senior defenseman and captain Colin Kirkpatrick with 3:17 left in the period.“When we went down by three goals in the second period, we knew we had to chip away at the lead to get back in the game,” Bogan said. “It was difficult to understand because we had outplayed them more than in any other match, yet they were winning.”“My message to the team after two [periods] was keep pounding away,” he added.The Ironmen regained a two-goal edge early in the third period when Rainey scored his second goal of the game, but Florczak netted one with 1:49 remaining in regulation to give the Colts a fighting chance. But it wasn’t meant to be, as Don Bosco held them off and put the game away on an empty net marker with just four seconds left in the game.“To me, that proved we, as a team, had the heart of champions,” Bogan said, referencing the Colts’ late third goal. “We never quit playing that entire game. Hats off to Bosco for matching our effort late in the third.”CBA’s road to the semifinals started with a first-round bye. A 9-0 shutout against Seton Hall Preparatory School, led by a four-goal effort from van Riemsdyk and a 13-save performance in net from senior goaltender Chris D’Alessio, was followed by a much closer 3- 2 win in the quarterfinals over Morristown- Beard School. Sophomore forward Conor Tierney closed out the Crimson in overtime off assists from junior forward Anthony Cusanelli and Kirkpatrick.“The hardest part after winning the Gordon Cup was getting refocused,” Bogan said. “I thought we did that well against Seton Hall. [Morristown-Beard] gave us their best effort all season. I thought we were mentally sharp but physically tired during that game.”The finals of the Non-Public tournament was played on March 9 at the Prudential Center in Newark, where Delbarton claimed its sixth straight state title on a 4-0 victory.CBA gained some redemption over Delbarton when it beat the Green Wave in the finals of the Gordon Cup championship, 5-2, on Feb. 23. The Colts were able to solve Delbarton after two matchups earlier in the season ended in ties. CBA made it to the finals after shutting out St. Augustine College Preparatory School, 5-0, in the quarterfinals and then defeating Don Bosco in the semifinals.“CBA was able to defeat Delbarton to end the streak of 66 unbeaten games,” Bogan said, referring to a string of 66 games that Delbarton played against New Jersey opponents without a loss. “And [CBA did so] when it mattered in the Gordon Cup championship. We wanted that game badly because we knew there wasn’t a guarantee of getting back to play Delbarton in the finals [of the state tournament].”Bogan couldn’t put his finger on any particular aspect of the team’s game that it needs to improve upon in order to win the state title.“If you look back at the history of who has won the state championship lately, obviously it has been Delbarton and noone else, despite teams like CBA and St. Augustine coming close,” he said. “Remember, when you advance to a state semifinals or finals, you have made it further than approximately 220 other teams. “Teams need to peak at the right moment and sometimes that isn’t enough,” he added. Finishing the season with 46 points — third highest on the team, van Riemsdyk was CBA’s leading scorer during the state tournament with six points (five goals, one assist). Cusanelli, who was second in goals (21) and fourth in points (45), put up five points during the tournament, while senior forward and alternate captain Matt Langlois, CBA’s top scorer during the season with 51 points and a team-high 27 goals, notched three points.Langlois is one of six seniors graduating off the team this year. Defensemen R.J. Steer (captain) and Kirkpatrick, forwards Chris Deatrick and Florczak and starting netminder D’Alessio have also played their final game with the Colts.“The seniors provided so much to help us compete next season,” Bogan said. “They taught our underclassmen hard work, focus and dedication. They paved the groundwork through excellent leadership that will allow the underclassmen to continue CBA’s successful hockey program.”The goal for the next group of Colts is to get back to the state championship game. Bogan looks at van Riemsdyk to lead the charge offensively along with juniors Billy Antonides and Billy Meyer, as well as sophomores Brendan Murphy and Tierney. Freshman Ryan Bogan, Tim Clifton and James Stanger will build upon the experience they gained this season on defense. In net, sophomore Connor Silverstein and freshman Michael Cernero will compete for the starting job.
By Nemanja BjedovMARCOS Baghdatis recorded his first singles win on the ATP Tour for five months when he beat Slovakian Lukas Lacko 6-7(2), 6-2, 6-4 in the second round of the Citi Open in Washington D.C.The struggling Cypriot’s last win had come in Rotterdam in February.Having lost to Lacko in their first two meetings, at Wimbledon in 2010 and last year in Zagreb, the 16th seeded Baghdatis this time came out on top, and he will now take on the winner of the match between second-seed Kei Nishikori of Japan and American hope Jack Sock.The Limassol native hit nine aces and crucially saved five of the six break points he faced to beat Lacko in just over two hours.While waiting for his next opponent, 28-year-old Baghdatis committed to the Malaysian Open, which will take place between September 21-28 at the Putra Stadium in Kuala Lumpur.“Kuala Lumpur has been a special event for me. When I was in the final they really gave me so much support, which I remember well, so I am really looking forward to the event,” said Baghdatis, the World No 44, who will make his fourth Kuala Lumpur appearance with his best performance coming in 2011 when he reached the final.
By Benjamin GroundsRaheem Sterling’s unsavoury scuffle with Manchester United’s Antonio Valencia marred a productive evening against Ecuador in which Ross Barkley shot to prominence as a serious wildcard in England manager Roy Hodgson’s armoury of attacking options.Under the Miami heat, with shirts clinging to bodies, Sterling’s ill-timed lunged sparked a furious reaction from Valencia, the standard bearer of the South American’s Word Cup hopes who perhaps is still smarting from a leg break sustained four years ago this September.The World Cup has long been the breeding ground of infamous dismissals that have shaped and sealed the fate of many a nation’s hope of glory. Zinedine Zidane’s entrance into the World Cup hall of fame was guaranteed from the moment his head met ball twice from corners to sink Brazil in the 1998 final – but exited infamously when red mist, and Italy’s Marco Materazzi, descended eight years later courtesy of that same beret-hanger.It wasn’t the first time either that ‘Zizou’ had been given his marching orders at football’s main event; stamping a Saudi Arabian in a 1998 group match temporarily left France without their talisman en route to the final. Only Rigobert Song (94, 98) has equalled the former Real Madrid and Juventus playmaker’s tally of two World Cup reds, but with temperatures expecting to stifle free-flowing attacking football this summer in South America, the heat may to be too much for a few others.5. Mario BalotelliThe ticking time-bomb of Milan, Balotelli has been linked with a move back to England prior to a ball in Brazil being kicked, which will crank up the thermostat measuring the striker’s desire to impress.Remembered affectionately in the UK for letting off fireworks from his bathroom window, ‘Crazy Mario’ was sent off for his country in a friendly against Czech Republic last year for two bookings in as many minutes, and has endured several strained relationships with managers in his short career draped in disciplinary problems.Guiseppe Rossi’s omission from the final 23-man squad will mean the burden of a country’s hopes will fall on Balotelli’s 23-year-old shoulders.4 – Nigel de JongAnother from the Rossoneri camp, de Jong’s combative approach has earned him the nickname ‘the terrier’.A career that has seen only one red card to date – for two bookable offences against Rapid Bucharest in Hamburg’s 2005/06 UEFA Cup campaign, betrays his penchant for dishing out the rough stuff.The 29-year-old makes the list purely for the Kung-Fu kick on Xabi Alonso in the 2010 final that referee Howard Webb remarkably believed only merited a booking.3 – Sergio RamosSpain may have felt they were on the receiving end of some industrious tactics by the Dutch in the final showdown in Johannesburg’s Soccer City stadium four years ago, but Vicente del Bosque’s side have a hit-man of their own.Sergio Ramos has a history of violence for his club side Real Madrid, having accrued 19 red cards during his time at the Bernabeu.Remarkably, despite over 100 caps for La Roja, Ramos is yet to receive his marching orders, but in a World Cup where the reigning World and European champions have drifting favouritism, he may well be forced to deploy dirtier tactics.2 – PepeRamos’ Real Madrid counterpart, Pepe, is equally effusive in the tackle and will forever be remembered for his 10-match suspension after he lost his cool against Getafe in 2009.The Portuguese defender, having conceded a penalty, aimed two swipes at the prone Javi Casquero, and his bad boy image reared itself once more in the home defeat to Barcelona this year, when he and Cesc Fabregas resembled rutting stags. His short temper, saddled with the burden of a group of death that pits the Portuguese alongside Ghana, USA and Germany means whatever happens, controversy is likely to tail the 31-year-old in Brazil.1- Wayne RooneyEngland’s great white hope has previously seen his World Cup go up in smoke, having been sent-off in 2006 for a stamp on Riccardo Carvalho.Rooney, who missed the group stages of Euro 2012 following a hack at Montenegro’s Miodrag Dzudovic in qualifying, attacked the British public after a drab goalless draw against Algeria in South Africa, and enters this year’s tournament out of form and short on fitness.Paul Scholes has questioned whether if he is passed his best, and if England toil, Rooney may well implode again.For more articles and the latest football news, check out FTBpro