What is it with Tuesdays and snow? The same thing happened last week, and both the Big North and NJIC had bowling matches postponed. The “score ticker” is quiet again today, altough there was some (more) big news made on Monday, plus a whole lot of sights and sounds from the North Jersey Singles Classic at Parkway Lanes over the weekend, so let’s dig in (because it beats shoveling snow)…
First, a couple of notes on the Singles Classic: 1.) This was actually the second time in four years that snow shortened the tournament. I covered the event for The Ridgewood News in 2009 and noted that in the story but can’t remember exactly what time everything ended. Before Saturday’s Classic, tournament director/Fairleigh Dickinson women’s bowling coach Mike LoPresti sent out an email with a condensed schedule that optimistically projected getting everything done by 1:45 PM, so folks could get home before the snow got really heavy. And girls champion Nikki Vucak of Paramus Catholic threw the final ball of the tournament at — ready for this? — 1:45 on the button. Kudos to Mike and the FDU ladies for doing what it takes to “Git ‘R Done”.
Note 2.) The program referred the event as the “2013 North Jersey HS Singles Championships”… except there’s one small issue with that. The original 2013 Singles Classic took place in January. For the first 13 editions of the tourney, it was held on the first Saturday of January, while the FDU-sponsored Holiday Team Challenge took place on the second or third Saturday of December. For the 2013-14 season, the events have been flip-flopped, in part to position what is now the New Year’s Team Challenge (which includes traditional games in qualifying and Baker games in the playoff rounds) on the weekend before the Bergen County girls tournament (which uses a similar format). The idea makes sense, although it may give the 13-lovers in the Varsity Aces audience mixed emotions… technically speaking, there will be no 2013 Team Challenge, but there have been two 2013 Singles Classics.
At any rate, congratulations to Vucak and Glen Rock senior Jake Rollins for their victories in Elmwood Park on Saturday. Both had reached the semifinals last season (2012-13), and if research is correct, both were in the quarterfinals the season before. Seems like Vucak’s quote about moving “up the ladder” in The Record’s tournament recap was more spot-on than either of us realized at the time.
The difference in the finals: marks for the winners. Rollins rolled either a spare or strike (including a 4-bagger/hambone in Frames 4-7) in the first nine frames, then went strike-strike-7 in the 10th. Vucak opened with eight straight marks (including a 3-bagger/turkey in Frames 3-5), got the wood on a 4-7 split in the 9th and finished up strike-strike-6 in the 10th.
Both runners-up also got trophies, as well they should — it’s not easy to reach a 1-on-1 final, let alone compete in one for the first time ever, as was the case for Indian Hill sophomore Alex McGuire on the boys side and Ridgewood senior Kelly Skettini for the girls. Everyone who qualified for the semifinals (8 boys, 6 girls) was honored afterward, making the de facto All-Tournament teams as follows… BOYS: Rollins, McGuire, Lyndhurst’s Jordan Lopez, Daijon Smith and Ryan Donohue, PC’s Brian Rizzi, Bergen Tech’s Steven Doughty and DePaul’s Joe Malyack. GIRLS: Vucak, Skettini, Fair Lawn’s Ellie Schuckman, Paramus’ Haley Hassan, Bergen Tech’s Aimee Balleza and Holy Angels’ Tiffany Sucero.
Speaking of Mr. Donohue…
BABY, IT’S ICYMI OUTSIDE: The “icy” acronym stands for “In Case You Missed It”… On Friday, Dec. 6, Ridgefield Park senior Alex Vorhees bowled the Scarlets’ first 300 game in 10 years at Bowler City in Hackensack (the last had been by Steve Fernandez in the 2003 Bergen County tournament). Want a really far-out stat? Vorhees’ perfecto happened one year to the day after Fair Lawn’s Cory Heitler tossed one in the same house… not to be outdone, the aforementioned Lyndhurst freshman Ryan Donohue fired his first varsity 300 at Wallington Lanes on Monday, Dec. 16, and is the first Golden Bear to do so since his teammate, Lopez, had one in the 2013 Bergen tournament. The last prior freshman to bowl a 300 in North Jersey? Dylan Caruso of Secaucus in 2007… at Wallington Lanes.
Taglines looks forward to catching up with both gentlemen sometime soon to tell their stories in greater detail. A couple readers also have asked when the next Boys Top 10/Girls Top 5 polls will be released, and the answer is the same… very soon, I hope. In the meantime, with two new entries penned in the past 10 days, it’s time to update “The 300 List” — again, this is since 1985 only, and if you spot an omission, please notify the Aces immediately:
300 GAMES BY NORTH JERSEY BOWLERS (IN VARSITY MATCHES)
Brittany Hovan (Paramus), Bowler City, 12/19/2012
Nicolette Vucak (Paramus Catholic), Bowler City, 1/31/2011
Dyanne Robles (Immaculate Heart), Bowler City, 1/19/1999
> To my knowledge, the next girl from Passaic County to bowl a 300 in a varsity match will be the first.
Ryan Donohue (Lyndhurst), Wallington Lanes, 12/16/2013
Alex Vorhees (Ridgefield Park), Bowler City, 12/6/2013
Jake Rollins (Glen Rock), Parkway Lanes, 2/6/2013
Jordan Lopez (Lyndhurst), Bowler City, 1/19/2013*
Cory Heitler (Fair Lawn), Bowler City, 12/6/2012
Dan Wuhrman (Park Ridge), Carolier Lanes, 2/15/2012***
Simon Lezaja (Bergen Catholic), Bowler City, 1/12/2012
Tim Frantin (Pascack Valley), Holiday Bowl, 1/3/2012
Jason Prezant (Pascack Hills), Parkway Lanes, 2/3/2011
Tim Frantin (Pascack Valley), Bowler City, 1/11/2011
Kevin Macchia (Ramapo), Carolier Lanes, 2/17/2010***
Tim Scott (West Milford), T-Bowl II, 1/28/2010
Zach Zuravner (Lakeland), T-Bowl II, 1/16/2010*
Chris Ferrara (Wallington), Wallington Lanes, 1/12/2010
Brian DiMarco (Bergenfield), Holiday Bowl, 12/9/2009
Nick Corvelli (Bergen Catholic), Bowler City, 1/26/2009
Perrin DeFreitas (Hackensack), Bowler City, 1/16/2009
Rob Grippo (Bergen Catholic), Bowler City, 1/14/2009
Lawrence Jackson Jr. (Leonia), Wallington Lanes, 1/7/2008
Jeremy Corporan (Teaneck), Bowler City, 12/20/2007
Dylan Caruso (Secaucus), Wallington Lanes, 1/8/2007
Aaron Danielson (Newton), T-Bowl II, 2/11/2006**
Vinnie Milano (West Milford), T-Bowl II, 2/11/2006**
JC Klein (Paramus Catholic), Bowler City, 1/30/2006
Carlos Duarte (Passaic Tech), T-Bowl II, 1/18/2005
Carlos Duarte (Passaic Tech), T-Bowl II, 12/16/2004
Steve Fernandez (Ridgefield Park), Bowler City, 1/18/2003*
Steve Sinko (Bergenfield), Parkway Lanes, 12/16/2002
Mike Riccardi (St. Joseph), Bowler City, 1/19/2002*
Jason Tenorio (Passaic), Bowler City, 1/17/2002
Joe Anagnos (Ridgewood), Bowler City, 2/10/1999
Joe Bonser (Garfield), Lodi Lanes, 1/31/1996
Tony Park (Demarest), Feb. 1995
Joe Pelissier (Garfield), Parkway Lanes, 3/6/1993**
Dan Blair (Teaneck), Bowler City, 2/13/1991
Dave Nagelhout (Fair Lawn), 2/26/1990
John Epps (Montclair), Bowler City, 2/6/1990
Damon DeLise (Wayne Valley), Butler Bowl, 1/3/1989
Frank Mockenhaupt (Rutherford), Feb. 1988
Jonny Santiago (North Arlington), Wallington Lanes, 2/10/1987
Ray Adam (Wood-Ridge), Wallington Lanes, 1/15/1987
Mike Russo (Bergen Catholic), 1/7/1985
Russ Van Housen (Hawthorne), 1985
* County tournament
** Sectional tournament
*** State singles finals
The pre-Christmas portion of the season is almost in the books. After that, the next major tournament get-together in North Jersey will be the FDU New Year’s Team Championships at Parkway Lanes on Jan. 4… According to Coach LoPresti, the field is limited to 36 teams, and entries are open until Jan. 2.
See you ’round the lanes…