first_img Mater Dei’s Non-Public B boys cross-country state championship was a year in the making. Head coach Mike Tursi said his harriers began thinking about the state title last November after the Seraphs finished third at the State Group meet. A strong finish at the Meet of Champions the next week convinced them that it was within their reach. “We knew we were capable of winning it,” said Tursi. The Seraphs made it look easy on Nov. 16 when they beat runner-up Moorestown Friends, by 34 points, 36-70, to win their sixth State Group title (first since 1999) But it wasn’t that easy. Tursi could recall some anxious times back in August. “I remember thinking we could do what we wanted,” he said. The Seraphs top runner Curtis Jensen had suffered a stress fracture at the end of the outdoor track season, and that slowed his summer training. Tom Daley suffered the same injury and was also undertrained. The injury bug didn’t stop there; Jonathan Urena had back problems and No. 2 runner Patrick O’Boyle missed a week with a concussion from a skateboard accident. No wonder Tursi had questions about his team’s ability to achieve its potential. But, August turned into September and things began to turn around. First, the Seraphs picked up their first invitational title in 10 years winning their Division at the Stewart Memorial in Elizabeth convincingly. They would win their Shore Conference Division (B Central) crown for a third year in a row. Outstanding finishes at Monmouth County (fifth) and the Shore Conference (seventh) boosted the Seraphs confidence even more. Jensen and O’Boyle, in the meantime, were establishing themselves as the conference’s best one-two. They finished onetwo at the Stewart Memorial. At the SC, O’Boyle set a Holmdel Park school record (16:15) and Jensen was close by running (16:18) for the third fastest in school history. Together they were third and fifth. The Seraphs had never had more than three runners under 18:00 at Holmdel Park in one race before and here, they had five and a school record team average of 17:16.20. The stage was now set for a big Seraph Day at the NJSIAA Group Championships and Mater Die was ready. Jensen (16:46) ran second to Gill St. Bernard’s Doug Smith (15:44), the MOC favorite. O’Boyle gutted it out through a cramp to finish third (16:53) giving the team what it wanted up front, two-three, although maybe not the way they expected with O’Boyle needing a late spring to take third at the line. Ryan Lundy (17:47) and Mike Woyak (17:47) both came up with Holmdel Park personal bests in 10th and 11th place. Fifth scorer Urena was near his personal best at 18:02. He finished 13th overall. Sixth and seventh runners, Daly and Mike Amato, were 29th and 37th overall. Mater Dei’s team average was 17:27. “They worked hard; they are a great bunch of kids,” said Tursi, who won his third state title as the Seraphs head coach. During the season, the Seraph harriers got to break in the school’s new allweather track. The old cider track has been retired. With the depth the team has shown in winning this state title, Tursi is looking forward to putting together 4×800 and Distance Medley Relay teams that can post qualifying times for the Penn Relays next spring. BY TIM MORRIS Staff Writer last_img read more

first_imgThe NJ Marlins, a travel baseball organization, is looking for players between the ages of 9 and17 to compete this upcoming summer and fall.Tryouts will be held 5-7 p.m. May 19, 20, 25, 27 and June 1 and 2 at Cross Farms Field in Holmdel.Email njmarlins@gmail.com or visit www.njmarlins.com and fill out a Player Prospect Form. Details: Ed Graziano at 732- 614-2277 The inaugural Atlantic City International Triathlon will be held Sept. 18. The event will consist of a one-mile ocean swim, a 27-mile bike route, and a 10K run on the world-famous Atlantic City BoardwalkWith the addition of the first-ever staging area in Historic Boardwalk Hall’s main event arena and a bike loop through the tunnel portion of the Atlantic City Connector, this race will be a unique experienced for the competitors.Beginning at 7 a.m. on Sept. 18, competitors will begin the one-mile swim portion of the course by entering the Atlantic Ocean at Albany Avenue and swimming along the shoreline to Mississippi Avenue in front of the Pier Shops at Caesars. Once there, competitors will leave the beach for the first transition in the Boardwalk Hall event arena. Then, leaving Boardwalk Hall through the Pacific Avenue loading dock area, competitors will travel the bike route to Atlantic City Expressway exit 4, where they will exit the westbound lane and re-enter on the Expressway eastbound lane. Exiting the tunnel section of the Atlantic City Connector marks the turnaround to begin the second and third loops. The final loop has competitors re-entering Boardwalk Hall for the second transition into the 10K run on the Atlantic City Boardwalk, finishing in front of Bally’s Atlantic City.Registration for the Atlantic City International Triathlon is now open and available on www.active.com for a fee of $150 until May 31. After May 31, registration increases to $175. There will not be any same-day registration available. Only the first 1,000 registrations will be accepted.last_img read more

first_imgFourteen girls from Mater Dei Prep trudge into the Middletown Ice World rink a few minutes before another 8 a.m. practice on most school days.“They come walking in tired, and then everything is fine. You can see their passion for the game,” said coach Olivia Mucha, who will guide the Lady Seraphs into their maiden season as one of the few girls ice hockey teams in New Jersey. “They want to be there, and they’re excited.”Because of that, they’ll play a tri-state schedule against teams from Pennsylvania and Long Island, N.Y., as well as New Jersey.Garden State opponents include Summit High School, Pingry School, Morristown- Beard School and Princeton Day School.Mucha seems pleased with the team’s progress. Their time spent before the start of the school day is regarded as part of their academic curriculum in physical education.Although it’s a new team, half of the players have played before for Mucha’s New Jersey Titans U16 travel team that plays in the Mid-Atlantic Women’s Hockey Association with five other teams and is 7-4-1. She also coaches a Titans U12 team that plays in a division against six other teams. She started coaching in July after graduating from Princeton University, where she played women’s hockey from her freshman year and was sidelined midway through her senior season last winter with a “health issue.” She could not play after that. Now she’s director of the Titans’ women’s ice hockey program that has four age-level teams, including her two squads, a U8 team and a U10 team.A few of Mater Dei’s girls play for the Brick Hockey Club and another with the New Jersey Colonials out of Morristown.Mater Dei will open its season on Dec. 1 against Portledge School in Long Island. “My biggest thing is teaching basic skill — all the little things [like] passing, give and gos and breakouts in the zone,” Mucha said. “Every goal scored comes from working together.”Mucha understands the value of the finer points of the game. She said she has played hockey since she was 3 years old and excelled in her high school years at The Hotchkiss School, a private school in Lakeville, Conn.“Every game at Princeton was memorable,” she said. “I just loved every game to put on a jersey and the challenge of it. I always enjoyed working with my teammates, getting advice from my coaches.”She earned a degree in developmental psychology at Princeton and said her biggest challenge is that each player is motivated differently.The most enjoyable part of it all, she said, is “every kid brings attitude and different skills. It’s getting to see it all work for the game.”She hopes to see that come together when the team plays Summit at Middletown Ice World at 5:45 p.m. on Dec. 4.The roster includes juniors Alexa Kaminski, Samantha Gatti and Jordan Pirrello; sophomores Tabitha Franceschini, Jesse De- Vito, Mia Beuthe, Elisabeth Hill, Brianna Haviland and Sarah Gallagher; and freshmen Mackenzie Materese, Lexie Tedeschi, Caitlyn Keenan, Tea Ferrara and Ally Freeman.After the Summit home opener on Dec. 4, the Seraphs play another home game at 5:45 p.m. on Dec. 11 against Pingry, followed by a Dec. 19 game against Summit in Bridgewater at 5:15 p.m.After the holiday break, action resumes on Jan. 8 (6:30 p.m.) against Princeton Day, on Jan. 15 (3:30 p.m.) against Pingry in Bridgewater, on Jan. 17 (3 p.m.) at The Hill School in Pottstown, Pa., on Jan. 30 (5:00 p.m.) against Morristown-Beard in Twin Oaks and on Feb. 2 (5:45 p.m.) at Princeton Day. By WAYNE WITKOWSKI Correspondent last_img read more

first_imgBy Brian HomewoodGermany dominated the FIFA Player of the Year shortlist, with six nominees among the 23 candidates announced on Tuesday, while the 10-man coaching shortlist was full of anomalies and controversy.Jurgen Klinsmann was included among the coaches after leading United States to the last 16 of the World Cup but Jorge Luis Pinto and Jose Pekerman, who took Costa Rica and Colombia respectively to the quarter-finals, were overlooked.Jorge Sampaoli, whose hugely entertaining Chile side knocked out defending champions Spain on their way to the last sixteen, and Vahid Halilhodzic, who took an inspirational Algeria to the knockout stages, were also ignored.On the other hand, there was room for Bayern Munich’s Pep Guardiola, even though his team’s most important match of the year, a Champions League semi-final at home to Real Madrid, ended in a 4-0 defeat.Almost inevitably, Chelsea’s Jose Mourinho also sneaked in despite failing to land a trophy on his return to Stamford Bridge.The players’ list showed similar anomalies and appeared to be based more on European club football than FIFA’s flagship tournament.Manuel Neuer, Thomas Muller, Toni Kroos, Mario Gotze, Philipp Lahm and Bastian Schweinsteiger were six players from world champions Germany to be included and beaten finalists Argentina had three, Lionel Messi, Angel Di Maria and Javier Mascherano.Last year’s winner Cristiano Ronaldo was duly named along with his Real Madrid team-mates Gareth Bale (Wales) and James Rodriguez(Colombia).Manchester City and Ivory Coast midfielder Yaya Toure was the only African player short-listed, Neymar was Brazil’s sole representative, and there were none at all from CONCACAF region or Asia.Notable absentees included United States goalkeeper Tim Howard and Costa Rica stopper Keylor Navas, both outstanding in Brazil, and Costa Rica defender Giancarlo Gonzalez, who many critics saw as one of the tournament’s most influential players.FIFA, who organise the award jointly with France Football, said the final three candidates for both awards, officially known as the Ballon d’Or, would be announced on December 1 with the award ceremony in Zurich on January 12.“The list of 23 male candidates has been drawn up by football experts from the FIFA Football Committee and by a group of experts from France Football,” FIFA said.“The list of ten coaches has been drawn up by the committee for Women’s Football and FIFA Women’s World Cup and by the FIFA Football Committee, as well as by a group of experts from France Football.”last_img read more

first_imgPremier League-based trio Diego Costa, Juan Mata and Santi Cazorla were among a high-profile list of absentees when Spain coach Vicente Del Bosque named his provisional 25-man squad for Euro 2016 on Tuesday.Costa injured his hamstring against Liverpool in Chelsea’s penultimate game of the season. Atletico Madrid striker Fernando Torres was also absent from the squad despite his improved form towards the end of the season, as were Arsenal midfielder Cazorla and Valencia forward Paco Alcacer, Spain’s top scorer in their qualifying campaign.Manchester United midfielder Mata, Barcelona’s Sergi Roberto and Villarreal’s Mario Gaspar were also excluded from the defending champions’ squad despite being involved in the March friendlies with Italy and Romania.Spain will play three friendlies, against Bosnia, South Korea and Georgia before starting the defence of their title against Czech Republic on June. 13.last_img read more

first_imgSummaries from the World Cup Qualifying European matches on MondayMonday, September 5 Serbia           2 Filip Kostic 62, Dusan Tadic 69penIreland          2 Jeff Hendrick 3, Daryl Murphy 80– – –Wales            4 Sam Vokes 38, Joe Allen 44, Gareth Bale 50,90+5penMoldova          0– – –Israel           1 Tal Ben-Haim 35Italy            3 Graziano Pelle 14, Antonio Candreva 31pen, Ciro Immobile 83Red Card: Giorgio Chiellini 55– – –Spain            8 Diego Costa 10,66, Sergi Roberto 55, David Silva 59,90+1, Vitolo 60, Alvaro Morata 82,83Liechtenstein    0– – –Ukraine          1 Andriy Yarmolenko 41Missed penalty: Yevhen Konoplyanka 83Iceland          1 Alfred Finnbogason 5– – –Croatia          1 Ivan Rakitic 44penTurkey           1 Hakan Calhanoglu 45+3– – –Finland          1 Paulus Arajuuri 18Kosovo           1 Valon Berisha 60pen– – –Georgia          1 Jano Ananidze 78Austria          2 Martin Hinteregger 16, Marc Janko 42– – –Sunday, September 4Czech Republic   0Northern Ireland 0– – –Norway           0Germany          3 Thomas Mueller 15,60, Joshua Kimmich 45– – –Romania          1 Adrian Popa 85Missed penalty: Nicolae Stanciu 90+7Montenegro       1 Stevan Jovetic 87– – –Malta            1 Alfred Effiong 14Red Card: Jonathan Caruana 59, Luke Gambin 90+1Scotland         5 Robert Snodgrass 9,61pen,84, Chris Martin 53, Steven Fletcher 78– – –San Marino       0Red Card: Christian Brolli 53Azerbaijan       1 Ruslan Gurbanov 45– – –Kazakhstan       2 Sergey Khizhnichenko 51,58Poland           2 Bartosz Kapustka 9, Robert Lewandowski 35pen– – –Denmark          1 Christian Eriksen 17Missed penalty: Christian Eriksen 72Armenia          0– – –Slovakia         0Red Card: Martin Skrtel 57England          1 Adam Lallana 90+5– – –Lithuania        2 Fiodor Cernych 32, Vykintas Slivka 34Slovenia         2 Rene Krhin 77, Bostjan Cesar 90+3last_img read more

first_imgChelsea manager Antonio Conte gave short shrift to media reports linking him with a move away from the English Premier League leaders and said he was eager to build “something important” at Stamford Bridge.The former Juventus boss, who admitted last month he has struggled adjust to life in England without his family, has been linked with a return to Italy with Inter Milan.Speculation went into overdrive, however, after Italian agent Federico Pastorello said Conte might find offers from “historical clubs” difficult to resist.“I don’t like it when others speak for me. Pastorello is a friend, I know him well, but I don’t like when others speak for me,” Conte told British media.“If someone wants to know something about me, then they must ask me. We’re fighting for the title and we want to achieve this goal, then we’ll try to build something important together.”When asked whether that meant he will be at Chelsea next season, Conte added: “Yes, for the next season.”Winger Eden Hazard is another Chelsea employee who has been linked with a move away from the club with British media reporting strong interest from Real Madrid.Chelsea’s Belgian goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois, however, felt his compatriot would not become distracted by such talk over the last few weeks of the season.“Eden is not affected by the speculation. He is just calm,” said Courtois, who has also been linked with a move to the Spanish giants.“He knows that he is important to Chelsea, like I do. We are both very happy to be here. The game against City was my 100th for Chelsea, and I hope to have many more.”Chelsea, who have a seven-point cushion over second-placed Tottenham Hotspur with eight games remaining, visit 13th-placed Bournemouth on Saturday.last_img read more

first_imgGatlin upstaged the Jamaican with the top time in the first round, even though the American got a little push from nature with a strong back wind of 2.1 meters per second during his 9.83-second race.Bolt could count on an adoring crowd but faced a slight headwind as he cruised to a time of 9.96, the fifth fastest overall.”It was OK. It was not perfect,” Bolt said. “I still have some adjustments. Just have to concentrate on my technique now.”Gatlin had no such complaints after his run.”I felt safe, like, after 50 meters so I did not have to push it too much,” said Gatlin, who was .13 seconds faster than Bolt.Those results will mean nothing by Sunday’s semifinals and final, when the crowd at the Bird’s Nest will be hoping for a memorable head-to-head between the sport’s biggest star and the 33-year-old American who has not been beaten in two seasons after returning from a second doping ban.Bolt has been struggling with injury and form during Gatlin’s comeback streak and on Saturday even his showboating was turned off. Beyond a few perfunctory waves and smiles, it was all business from the bearded Bolt. The flashiest part of his showing at the stadium where he won 100 gold with a world record seven years ago were his lemon-yellow colored shoes.Gatlin, who served a four-year doping suspension midway through a career that started with a gold medal at the 2004 Athens Olympics and a sprint double at the 2005 worlds, faced some scattered boos from fans but nothing like the hostile media reception he has had in several nations.He flaunted his form, though, looking left from the outside lane just past the midway mark and coasting from then on to set the top time.Bolt, who celebrated his 29th birthday on Friday, was slow out of the blocks but once he was fully upright he used his massive strides to make victory look easy.Even though they were only heats, the 100 dominated the opening day of the nine-day event. In the morning session on a sweltering but clear day, 19-year-old Ghirmay Ghebreslassie became the youngest man to win the marathon at the world championships and the first world champion from Eritrea.Ghebreslassie finished in 2 hours, 12 minutes, 27 seconds, holding off Yemane Tsegay of Ethiopia by 40 seconds. Solomon Mutai of Uganda was third, while his teammate, defending world champion Stephen Kiprotich, was sixth.The biggest surprise of all was the wipeout of the Kenyan team, which some favored to get a sweep in Beijing. Instead, world-record holder Dennis Kimetto and Kenyan teammate Wilson Kipsang dropped out of the race while Mark Korir finished 22nd.Olympic 800 champion David Rudisha, one of the many great runners on the Kenyan team, led from start to finish with his majestic stride in full motion to reach the semifinals of his event.And after the marathon setback, Rudisha was glad to see all three Kenyans advance in his event.”This,” Rudisha said, “is a boost for morale.”last_img read more

first_imgIt landed in the middle of the stadium and was brought out by Sports Minister, Justin Tkatchenko, PNG NRL Chairman, Sudhir Guru and Digicel’s Head of Consumer, Khattar Fehmi.A lively crowd of about 15 000 people have packed the stadium, many bearing flags and banners of both teams.last_img

first_imgHe will be assisted by local Josaia Rabele Dakuitoga. Potter was a former Wests Tigers coach who took in blockbusting winger Marika Koroibete and helped in his development before Koroibete left for the Melbourne Storms. FNRL development manager Rabele confirmed this yesterday saying Potter has been appointed by the Fiji Sports Commission. “Our new coach Mick Potter, he came last year, we were doing basic training to elite squad together and he has been confirmed to be our head coach and I will assist him,” Rabele said. For now, Rabele said Potter had sent him some names of players that he had seen and would like to include in the May Test. “We have some NRL available players with other players that Mick has named, most of these players that have been selected by Mick are players that I have not heard of but I hope to send him some players who have been impressive during fitness tests hoping they would make the May test team against PNG but the final call is his,” Rabele said. Yesterday a fitness test was conducted for the local players, revealing that majority of the players were those in the 18 to 20 years category. “Most of these boys came through our junior program and from having this fitness test I’m hoping to gauge their performance and monitor their training from here,” Rabele said.Caption: Michael Potter during his stint as the Wests Tigers’ coach.last_img read more