Vullo saves best effort of season for last Holmdel junior runs a personal record despite seeding at MOC JERRY WOLKOWITZ Christina Vullo got a bit of redemption by blowing away the field in her heat of the 3,200 at the Meet of Champions and running a personal record 11:11.55. SOUTH BRUNSWICK — Christina Vullo paid a big price for a bad day. Vullo, a Holmdel High School junior, was burned by the heat in Egg Harbor Township and turned in a disappointing 11:49.29 for the 3,200 at the state group meet on June 2. While that time was good enough to qualify her for the Meet of Champions, it is well off her typical effort and kept her out of the more competitive 3,200 at the Meet of Champions in South Brunswick. “The heat really got to me,” Vullo said of the state group meet. “I wanted to come back here and run really hard.” JERRY WOLKOWITZ Ryan Cahill of Holmdel High School ended his high school career on a high note with a second-place finish in the pole vault at the Meet of Champions. There’s no doubting she did that. Faced with a field that was not in her class, Vullo ran virtually alone for nearly the entire race. She finished in 11:11.55 with her closest competitor being nearly half a lap behind. “It’s a little tough trying to concentrate,” Vullo said of running alone, “but I have to be happy with running a PR (personal record) in my last race of the year.” Vullo bested her previous top effort by nearly 7 seconds; she ran 11:18 at the Shore Conference meet on May 20. While Vullo was demonstrating that she should be counted among the best distance runners in the state, school mate Ryan Cahill was rising to the top of the class among the state’s pole vaulters. Cahill cleared 14-6 to take second at the meet. He and Josh Moline of Gateway Regional, Woodbury, were the only two vaulters over the bar at 14-6 and both missed at 15-0, but Moline won on fewer misses at the previous height. Cahill was using a new, longer pole at the meet and would likely have benefited by being a bit more comfortable with it. His third attempt at 15-0 looked good, but he nicked the bar late to bring it down. “I got it with my chin,” the senior noted. “This was the first time I made a height in a meet with the new pole.” Cahill’s teammate and training partner Craig Weindorf also qualified for the meet, but did not clear the opening height of 13-0. The Hornets’ Georgie Fear also made the trip to South Brunswick to compete in the girls discus. She finished 21st with a toss of 101-6 in her final high school competition. Middletown South had a pair of medal winners with Nicole Lombardy taking sixth (2:18.67) in the 800 meters and Katie Pachuta finishing in the same spot (40-2) in the shot put. Lauren Dike also ran in the 800 for the Eagles; she finished 15th. Christian Brothers Academy’s large contingent garnered a number of medals, including a pair by Nat Glackin. The Colts junior was sixth (1:54.79) in the 800 and seventh (4:23.23) in the 1,600. Teammate Andrew Filachek was on his heels in the 1,600, finishing eighth. Thomas Falvey was the third CBA runner in the race; he finished 17th. In the 800, Glackin was followed by Stephen Schaefer and Patrick Lenaghan for the Colts. Schaefer was 14 and Lenaghan was 18. Brian Hoffman and Jeff Dichiara both medaled in the 3,200. Hoffman was sixth (9:31.86) and Dichiara eighth (9:37.62). Brian Kerwin ran 11th. Michal Socha finished 14th in the long jump while Doug Coppola gave CBA another top-20 finisher with a 13th in the high jump. Matawan had a pair of Top-10 competitors in Casandra Crawford, who just missed medaling in the javelin, and Chris Cashin, who finished 10th in the pole vault. Gaerrick Bennett, 19th in the 3,200, and Stuart Littlewood, 16th in the discus, were also at the MOC representing Matawan. Jody Benedict was a Top 10 finisher for St. John Vianney. She was 10th in the 3,200. Teammate Laura Carpenter was 17th in the same event. Catherine Schmierer was the only Mater Dei performer to crack the Top 20. She ran 19th in the 400. By lindsey Siegle Staff Writer
BY WARREN RAPPLEYEAStaff Writer CHRIS KELLY staff Bryan Felice and his Middletown North teammates have cruised to the Southern Conference White Division crown, and now set their sights on making some noise in the upcoming state tournament. On the heels of winning the New Jersey Interscholastic Ice Hockey League’s Southern Conference White Division crown, the Middletown High School North ice hockey team is preparing itself for the divisional playoffs set to begin Feb. 20. Coach Joe Campisano’s team sports a 13-3-1 ledger with its lone divisional loss coming against Wall. The Lions’ other defeats came at the hands of CBA, 7-3, and Bridegwater-Raritan, 3-2. A year ago, Middletown North struggled through a 4-13-3 campaign while playing in the Southern Conference’s Red Division. “The experience our guys got a year ago while playing at a higher level showed them what it really takes to get there,” the coach said. “We have several of those players back this year and working through all of that really benefited them. They also have bought into our defense first system.” The Lions also scored a lot of goals, 76 in just 17 games. Junior forward Mike Crisculo leads the way with 25 goals and 23 assists. Crisculo, who missed a large chunk of the 2005-06 season with a broken ankle, has been spectacular this season, often drawing extra attention from opponents that opens opportunities for his linemates. Nick Brown, for example, has eight goals and 14 assists, while Drew Koehler, the Lions’ captain, has 11 goals and 13 assists to his credit. Brown suffered a broken wrist three weeks ago, but it expected back for the playoffs. In his place, Walter Heid has stepped up. The sophomore has scored a pair of game-winners, victimizing Old Bridge and Brick Memorial. Defensively, Middletown North has been solid as well, permitting just 43 goals for a 2.53 team goals against average. Senior Joel Mazzola has carried the bulk of the load in goal, with Shane Hall playing well when called upon. A pair of sophomores, Richie Meyer and Bryan Felice, have been North’s top defensemen. Both players take care of business in their own zone and can contribute offensively; each has a goal and seven assists. Hard-hitting junior Scott Palmer has battled through a shoulder injury to give his team a physical presence on the blue line. Another sophomore defender, Joe Vega, gives Campisano an offensive threat, as evidenced by his eight goals and 10 assists. Historically Campisano’s teams have been known for their diligence in the corners and ability to battle in the trenches. This year’s edition is generally faster and more talented, the coach said. “Sometimes they take it for granted and they don’t compete the way they should,” he said. “They’ve learned that when you play the top teams, they have to bring it all out for every period and every shift. Sometimes they don’t do that in the games they feel we should win. And we’ve had a couple of narrow escapes.” To help prepare his team for the playoffs, the coach scheduled yesterday against Bishop Eustace (9-5-2), which sits in second place in the Southern Conference Red Division. The Lions close the season with games against Middletown South, St. John Vianney and Toms River East. “There’s not an easy game in there and this will give us a good test before the playoffs,” Campisano said. “They’ve learned what it takes to play at a high level, but they can’t turn it on and off. I’ll be reminding them about that.” BY WARREN RAPPLEYEA Staff Writer
By MATTHEW ROCCO Correspondent A fter coming within one win of a NJSIAA Tournament of Champions (TOC) title, the Holmdel High School girls tennis team will be in good shape to make another run at it next year.The Hornets were undefeated this season until the TOC finals against Millburn High School last week. Holmdel ran away with the Group II championship. Seeded No. 2 in the TOC, Holmdel jumped into the semifinals and beat West Windsor-Plainsboro High School South, 3-2.In a 4-1 decision, top-seeded Millburn captured the TOC crown by dealing the Hornets their first loss of 2014.Millburn, which now has 49 consecutive team victories, clinched its seventh TOC title at third singles. Senior Jane Bary secured a 6-4, 6-2 win over Holmdel sophomore Brianna Gibbs.Holmdel’s lone point came after Stephanie Pugh and Emily Kong posted a second-doubles win over Rebecca Blevins and Ingrid Waung, 6-0, 6-4.It took a super tiebreaker for the Millburn first doubles tandem of Anya Zakusilo and Sydney Zirlin to outlast Angela Tu and Tiffany Chen of Holmdel, 6-7 (5), 7-6 (4), 10-7.Hornets head coach Chuck Chelednik said the championship berth was a significant accomplishment for the program. The faceoff with Millburn marked Holmdel’s first appearance in the TOC title game in nine years. “We knew we needed to at least win the bottom three. Millburn’s top two are so strong,” Chelednik said. “It was a lot of pressure on our bottom three to come through.” Indeed, Millburn was most dominant in singles play. Sarah Yan, Holmdel’s competitor at second singes, lost her first match of the season to Millburn freshman Anna Brylin, 6-0, 6-0. At first singles, Holmdel freshman Alexandra Wojciak lost, 6- 2, 6-0, to Stephanie Schrage. Chelednik said he was happy that Pugh, a senior, was able to go out with a win. He also praised Chen and Tu, another senior, for bringing the first-doubles matchup down to the wire. Holmdel’s prospects appear bright for 2015, considering the return of its entire singles lineup. Two doubles competitors, Chen and Kong, are due back as well. “Hopefully, we will do even better next year and win [the TOC],” Chelednik said. “We’re hungry now to get another chance at it.”The Hornets secured their fourth group championship when they swept Summit High School, 5-0. Wojciak, Yan and Gibbs were at the top of their games, sacrificing just three games or fewer in each set they played.The Group II victory, which came on Oct. 17, was Holmdel’s first state title since 2005.“I knew we had a chance to win Group II, but getting to the [TOC] finals was a little above even my expectations,” Chelednik said.
Thiago Silva and Roberto Firmino scored either side of halftime to fire Brazil to a 2-1 win over Venezuela at the Copa America on Sunday, sending the five-times world champions into a quarter-final meeting with Paraguay.The victory completed the quarter-final line up that will see hosts Chile face Uruguay on Wednesday, Peru take on Bolivia on Thursday, and Colombia line up against Argentina on Friday.Saturday’s tie between Brazil and Paraguay will be a repeat of four years ago when the Paraguayans advanced on penalties.“Paraguay is a hard opponent, anyone who watched the last Copa America could see that they got to the final and deservedly so,” defender Thiago Silva said on Brazilian television after the game.Venezuela had never beaten Brazil in six Copa America games and their job was made all the harder after just nine minutes.Thiago Silva, recalled to the side for this match after being dropped, opened the scoring in spectacular style when he volleyed home a corner from former Real Madrid striker Robinho.Firmino doubled their lead six minutes into the second half when he leapt to volley home a cross from Willian on the left.Nicolas Fedor got a consolation goal for Venezuela six minutes from time when he stooped to head home from close range after Jefferson had touched a free kick from Juan Arango onto the post.The result takes Brazil’s goalscoring record against Venezuela in the Copa America to 27 goals for to two against.Colombia were left sweating on their Copa America hopes after a lacklustre 0-0 draw with Peru on Sunday.The result took Peru into the quarter-finals but Colombia’s advance is dependent on the result of the day’s later match between Brazil and Venezuela.Colombia were the better side and Peruvian keeper Pedro Gallese got down well to stop Radamel Falcao opening the scoring in the third minute. Pablo Armero then shot into the side netting after a defence splitting pass from James Rodriguez.Jackson Martinez missed a great chance to guarantee Colombia’s advance when he scuffed a weak shot straight at the keeper in injury time.The draw left both Colombia and Peru with four points in Group C and ended Ecuador’s chances of progressing as one of the two best third-placed teams.The winner of Group C will play Paraguay in the quarter finals, while the team in second place will face Bolivia. Uruguay, one of the guaranteed best third-place teams, face hosts Chile.
By Iacovos ConstantinouLeaders AEK faltered for a second consecutive week, this time against Nea Salamina, allowing Anorthosis and APOEL to move to within one and two points off the top of the table. Elsewhere, relegation-threatened Enosis and Paphos FC could only draw while Ermis went down to a last-gasp penalty against Omonia.In one of the most pulsating games of the season so far, ten-man Anorthosis came back from two goals down to clinch a most unexpected victory against Apollon.Even the most die-hard Anorthosis fans could not have expected such a turnaround in events after Holgersson scored an own goal to give Apollon a two-goal lead in the 58th minute. Eight minutes earlier, the home side had been reduced to ten after Gabriel got sent off for hitting an opponent.At that point Apollon, who were by far the better team from the outset, were cruising and it seemed a matter of time before they got the third. However, as happens so often in football, when you fail to take your chances you are made to pay. Anorthosis got the break they needed when Hollgerson pulled one back in the 66th minute and the complexion of the game changed completely. Lifted by the goal, the Famagusta team took control and pressed forward for the equaliser. They were rewarded when Laifis beat keeper Vale from the edge of the box with 15 minutes still on the clock.Both teams went for the win but it was Apollon who came closest but were denied by the post with Anorthosis keeper Koprivec well beaten.Then with seconds left Ndlovou fell in the box and the referee (wrongly) pointed to the spot. Pele sent Vale the wrong way to give all three points to Anorthosis.For a second consecutive game AEK were left to play the best part of the 90 minutes with ten men, this time against Nea Salamina.AEK’s Polish left-back Marciniak got a straight red for a two-footed challenge.Despite their numerical disadvantage, AEK were the better team and could have taken all three points if their top scorer Alves and tricky winger Tetey showed more composure in front of goal. For their part Salamina seemed content with a point.Champions APOEL continued their surge back to the top with a convincing 1-0 win over AEL in Limassol.The only goal of the game came early in the second half from their Portuguese captain Nuno Morais who beat Degra from the just inside the area with a fierce drive.The game was riddled with some amateurish mistakes by the referee who managed to infuriate both sets of players.Ethnikos meanwhile were unable to take advantage of their superiority and even though they took the lead through Pinceli, Paphos fought back and equalized, earning a valuable point in their fight for survival.Enosis were also unable to take the three points against Aris with the teams sharing the spoils in a 2-2 draw.Of the relegation threatened teams, Ermis were the worst off after the weekend games as they lost to Omonia. Sheridan hit the winner from a fiercely disputed penalty deep into injury time. Doxa beat bottom of the table Ayia Napa 2-0 in the final game of the round on Monday night, in a match interrupted for 25 minutes due to floodlight failure.Anorthosis vs Apollon 3-2Ethnikos vs Pafos FC 1-1Omonia vs Ermis 1-0Paralimni vs Aris 2-2AEL vs APOEL 0-1Nea Salamina vs AEK 0-0Video highlights courtesy of the Cyprus Football Association
By Mike CollettJohn Terry will pass into Chelsea folklore as their greatest captain during the most successful period in their history and his announcement on Sunday that he will leave at the end of the season marks the end of an era.Along with keeper Petr Cech, who quit last year, Frank Lampard, who departed in 2014, and Didier Drogba, who left in 2012, Terry was key to Chelsea’s success in the Premier League, FA Cup, League Cup, Europa League and the Champions League.In many ways he was even more important than the other three because he was the skipper and the heartbeat of the side no matter who was in the managerial hotseat at the club.Despite off-field controversies, including a charge of racist abuse for which he was cleared in court, and an alleged affair with a former team-mate’s ex-girlfriend, in almost 18 years Terry hardly ever let Chelsea down on the pitch.Including caretaker and interim managers, 13 different coaches have been in charge of Chelsea since Terry made his debut as a 17-year-old in 1998.None of them, apart from Jose Mourinho who managed Terry twice, has had more impact on Chelsea’s transformation from a run-of-the-mill Premier League team to European champions under billionaire Russian owner Roman Abramovich.In almost 700 appearances for the Stamford Bridge club, Terry was the one who represented an old school, never-say-die, thunderous approach that helped bring Chelsea more success than at any time since the club was formed in 1905.Never the quickest player, he has supreme positional sense, a clever tactical brain, and a fearless drive in the opposition goalmouth that has brought him more headed goals than any other defender in the Premier League era.MASSIVE PLAYEREarlier this season, after the champions’ stuttering start to the campaign, former Premier League manager Harry Redknapp said: “I still think John will be a massive player this year.“He is close to irreplaceable and, if Chelsea are going to win the league again, I think they will need him at his best. I simply cannot see them winning it with any combination of Gary Cahill, John Stones or Kurt Zouma at centre-back.”Stones has remained at Everton and Redknapp’s words have rung true because Terry, now 35, has not been at his best.Ray Wilkins, who skippered Chelsea some 40 years ago and was one of the men to take charge of the team on a caretaker basis, in February 2009, summed up what many Chelsea fans are thinking.“He will be a tremendous loss to Chelsea and I think there was another year left in him,” Wilkins told Sky Sports.“Not everything has gone right in his career, as we all know, but his performances on the field have been absolutely outstanding.”Former England captain Terry’s season could yet finish on a high. Chelsea have improved dramatically since interim coach Guus Hiddink replaced Mourinho in December and they are through to the last 16 of the Champions League and FA Cup.Terry’s final matches for Chelsea could thus bring more honours and while that appears unlikely given their inconsistent form this season, his legacy at the club is forever assured.On Monday, Chelsea left the door open for Terry at Stamford Bridge, indicating that Terry’s impending departure was not set in stone and that he could be offered the chance to stay on in the coming months.“John requested a meeting with the club the week before last,” a Chelsea spokesperson said in a statement released by Talksport’s Ian Abrahams on Twitter.“In that meeting he asked about the possibility of an extension to his existing contract.“John was advised that while no new deal was currently on the table, that situation could change in the coming months.“The club has the utmost respect for John and everything he has helped us to achieve to date. He is a fantastic servant of Chelsea Football Club and a superb captain and, as such, the club will keep the channels of dialogue open.”
THE lure of reaching the Champions League quarter-finals for the first time will weigh heavily on Manuel Pellegrini’s mind as Manchester City and Chelsea prepare for a heavyweight FA Cup fifth-round clash on Sunday (6pm).With City flying to Ukraine to face Dynamo Kiev just 24 hours after their showdown with Chelsea, the FA Cup tie could not have come at a worse time for Pellegrini, who is reluctant to field his strongest side.“I think it (the FA Cup) is a serious competition and not a competition you can throw away,” said the Chilean, whose side were beaten at home by the Premier League’s top two, Leicester City and Tottenham Hotspur, in their last two matches.“But at this moment… the chance to try and get to the Champions League quarter-finals for the first time, I think it’s a case where we are going to prioritise.”While both teams will line up at Stamford Bridge on the back of defeats, Chelsea are no doubt aware that the Cup presents their best chance of ending the season with a trophy.Hovering in the bottom half of the Premier League is bad enough but a 2-1 defeat at Paris St Germain on Tuesday has left Chelsea in danger of going out of the Champions League at the last 16 stage – with the second leg to come on March 9.Hiddink had led Chelsea on a 12-match unbeaten run since taking over from the sacked Jose Mourinho in December but that streak ended on Tuesday when he was forced to reshuffle his back four for the PSG clash after captain John Terry was ruled out with a hamstring injury.Asked if Terry would return for the City game on Sunday, Hiddink said “Difficult.”Holders Arsenal will take on second tier Hull City on Saturday (2.45pm) as they try to take another step towards becoming the first club since Blackburn Rovers in 1886 to win the FA Cup three years in a row.It has been a quarter of a century since Arsenal’s north London rivals Tottenham Hotspur won the Cup but Mauricio Pochettino’s men will be eager to continue their high-flying league form when they host Crystal Palace on Sunday (5pm).While Spurs and Arsenal are chasing a league-and-cup double, with both teams trailing Premier League leaders Leicester City by two points, Manchester United’s chances of landing any domestic silverware lie solely with the FA Cup.The managerial axe has been hovering above Louis van Gaal’s neck for several months and, with rumours of former Chelsea boss Mourinho waiting in the wings to take over, the Dutchman knows he cannot afford any more false moves with United.Last Saturday’s league defeat by Sunderland dented United’s hopes of securing a Champions League place next season and, should they lose to third tier Shrewsbury Town – the lowest ranked team left in the FA Cup – on Monday (9.45pm), Van Gaal is likely to be denied any further stay of execution.In other fifth-round matches, Bournemouth host Everton in an all-Premier League tie on Saturday (7.15pm), Watford play second tier Leeds United (5pm) and West Bromwich Albion and West Ham United travel to Championship sides Reading (5pm) and Blackburn Rovers (Sunday, 2pm) respectively.
These players are raking in the cash.
MSA President Ray Romo raised the matter at a press conference yesterday.Romo says the Besta Cup finals is one example that Koima says only 5 NSL players are allowed to play in each gam; 3 to take the field and 2 on the bench.Romo says they respect the rules but it does not suit this type of game like Besta cup.They fielded 3 of their NSL players while Manus fielded 7 NSL players but were allowed to play.He said this was not fair.Roma said Hagen raised the same issue but walere turned down by Simon Koima.Romo said the reason they do not want this rule to apply to Besta Cup because Besta Cup is also a semi professional competition and a pathway to identify NSL.He said the rules must be allowed to take place in other competition like PNG Games and Provincial Games and not Besta Cup because it undermines the team and players potential to move forward.Romo also said once the competition is over NSL pkayers have the right to play with the local associations and take part in competitions like Besta Cup because they are registered members of the local Provincial association.Romo wants PNG FA to look into the matter.
The tie is scheduled for April 7-9 at the 5,000-capacity Palais des Sports de Rouen, known as the Kindarena, which previously hosted France’s win against Israel in 2013.World No 1 Andy Murray sat out Britain’s 3-2 victory over Canada in the last round but has said that he expects to return to the side for the clash with France, who advanced by beating Japan 4-1 in Tokyo.Britain last faced France in the 2015 quarter-finals and went on to lift the cup after winning that match on grass at Queen’s Club.It will be the 22nd Davis Cup tie between the countries, but the first to be staged on clay since 1978.The surface may take some adjusting to because the match will get underway the week after the Miami Open, which is played outdoors and on hard courts.