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May 15, 2017 - 8:47am
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, sports.


The Genesee Region USBC bowling association inducted Robert J. "Bob" Foss Jr. posthumously into its Hall of Fame at an awards banquet Saturday night at Batavia Downs Gaming. Representing him are, from left, his brother, Jim, and children Cassidy and Curtis. Foss won many tournaments, including the GRUSBC Masters and Memorial Scratch Eliminator. He died last October at the age of 55. For more, click on the Pin Points tab at the top of this website's home page.

May 13, 2017 - 11:30pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in oakfield-alabama, Oakfield, sports, baseball, news.


There was no rain today, but there were a few tears. There were also memories and smiles as Coach Dan Gilbert was honored by his former colleagues and players in a ceremony on the field where he won games and molded men for more than a decade.

The ballpark will now be known as the Daniel Gilbert Memorial Field.

Gilbert passed away March 1 at the age of 47.

"It’s with mixed emotion that I say I’m the varsity baseball coach here at Oakfield-Alabama this year," said Nathan Klos, who took over the varsity team this season after Gilbert's passing. "On one hand, it’s a dream come true for me to come home to the program that built me and that has a great tradition in this community. On the other hand, Dan and I were supposed to coach these boys together this year."

The stories Klos told during his remarks were the stories that perhaps encapsulate the impact Gilbert had on the community. Gilbert became his P.E. coach when Klos was in the first grade and taught him sports and fitness until fifth grade. Klos spent his middle school years looking for ways to impress Gilbert, hoping it might serve him well when his turn came to play varsity baseball.

Gilbert put him on the varsity squad just before the end of the regular season in Nate's sophomore year and it was Klos who came to bat in a Section V playoff game with the game on the line, down by one run, runners on first and second, and on a 3-2 pitch, Klos delivered the decisive base hit and won another Section V championship for the Hornets.

Klos said it was the biggest highlight of his baseball life, and one made possible, because he knew, he said, that Gilbert believed in him.

Klos, Brandon Hall, and James Patrick all said Gilbert was the kind of coach who made great players better and elevated the lesser athletes into top contributors. He had a way of making every player believe that he believed in him.

"He got the very best out of every single us one of us," Hall said. "He focused hard and had more determination than any player actually on the field."

Patrick said Gilbert taught him how to be a family man and how to be a coach.

"One thing that is always in our lives that shows today is the support we have for each other because of an amazing man," Patrick said. "He was a loyal, hard-working guy who believes what is right is right and what wrong is wrong and he always treated kids fairly."

Gilbert was a 1987 graduate of O-A and returned to the school after college to be a teacher's aide and Special Ed instructor. After a stint in another job, he returned and became a teacher and coach.  

He loved baseball and his former players described a man who knew the game better than anybody they've met. That passion, they said, came through.

Sue Gilbert said the family will always be grateful for the day in his honor and the field that will carry on his memory.

"Our hope is that all who knew Dan will remember the passion he had for life," Sue Gilbert said. "Whether he was teaching his students, coaching his players or loving and caring for our children, he stayed true to what he believed -- the belief that every child had the potential to be great. Dan had a passion for helping each child become just that, through hard work, determination and drive. His students and athletes overcame obstacles and learned to believe in themselves."

Such a humble man, Superintendent Mark Alexander suggested, might not expect a day like today.

"I’m not sure how Dan would feel about the celebration here today, but he’s earned it and it’s well deserved," Alexander said.

Hall, who played for Gilbert from 1989 through 2003, thought maybe Gilbert was looking down on the day and making sure just this one time, rain didn't ruin something good.

"There’s only two times in all the years I played for him where I seen him upset," Hall said. "That was my freshman year after we lost in a torrential downpour. We had a stellar team and we would have went to states that year. The second time was my senior year, the day we got rained out at states. We were fired up and he was more fired up than anybody. I was watching the weather forecast this week and saw it was going to rain and I thought, ‘you know what, there ain’t no way he’s going to let that happen.' The two times I seen him the saddest was then. He ain't going to let that happen to us today and sure enough," he said as he held his palm skyward, "look."


Mark Alexander, superintendent


Jeff Schlagenhauf, athletic director



Brandon Hall presented Sue Gilbert with a plaque he made to commemorate the day.


James Patrick




Sue Gilbert

May 13, 2017 - 7:14pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Empire Cup College Showcase, soccer, sports, batavia, news.


Thousands of people -- high school soccer players, coaches, officials, and parents -- are in Batavia this weekend for the Empire Cup, a soccer showcase that gives high school players from throughout the Northeast a chance to play against other top players and display their skills for college recruiters.  

In the parking lot were license plates from New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Ontario, Canada, and, of course, New York.

Players were at both the Batavia Sports Park on State Street Road and at Genesee Community College.

The event brings an estimated $500,000 into the local economy. The Empire Cup is supposed to go for two weeks, but the boys' event was rained out last weekend.








May 10, 2017 - 2:35pm

Press release:

Representatives from Western Regional Off-Track Betting Corporation (WROTB) announced Tuesday that wagering at WROTB locations on Saturday’s Kentucky Derby was its highest total ever at $2,031,741, beating 2014’s record handle.

Handle was up over $200,000 over last year’s handle -- a 12-percent increase. Batavia Downs Gaming also posted a record gaming handle of $3.5 million for the day.

“This was an incredible day of wagering," said WROTB President Henry Wojtaszek. “We at WROTB want to thank our patrons for coming out to our branches, EZ bets, Batavia Downs and for using our online service Batavia

"We appreciate their patience on our busiest day. We could not have pulled this off if it wasn’t for our dedicated OTB branch and Batavia Downs staff, who worked tirelessly on Derby Day. We send congratulations to all our winners including the 34 patrons who hit the Trifecta and to the person who hit the $75,000 Superfecta.”

Derby wagers placed just at Batavia Downs Gaming totaled $91,330, an increase of nearly 58 percent over last year. Wagering using, WROTB’s online website, on the Derby was $98,352.50, a record. Batavia signed up 720 new accounts on Friday and Saturday, also a new record.  Buffalo ranked #4 in the country in terms of Derby viewership.

“It’s exciting to see that interest in the Kentucky Derby is alive and well in Western New York, “ said Todd Haight, general manager of Racing at Batavia Downs Gaming. “We had a record number of attendees at our onsite party.

"We’ll have another party for the Preakness with live mutuels sellers, food, free play and a complementary Preakness wager like we had for the Derby.”

The Preakness Stakes, the second leg of the Triple Crown, is scheduled for 6:48 p.m. on Saturday, May 20.

About Batavia Downs/WROTB

Owned and operated by 15 Western New York counties and the cities of Rochester and Buffalo, Western Regional Off-Track Betting Corporation is a public benefit corporation with headquarters in Batavia, NY. WROTB owns and operates 19 branches, as well as Batavia Downs Gaming, a standard bred racetrack and gaming facility. Since its inception, Western Regional OTB has generated over $215 million in operating and surcharge revenues to the taxpayers of those participating municipalities.

May 5, 2017 - 10:12am
posted by Howard B. Owens in baseball, sports, batavia.

Press release:

The Batavia Rotary Club 19th Annual High School Baseball Tournament scheduled for Saturday, May 6, has been canceled due to unplayable conditions caused by this week’s rain.

Due to scheduling conflicts the tournament, which features Batavia, Notre Dame, Oakfield-Alabama and Attica high schools, could not be rescheduled this season. This is third time in the tournament’s 19-year history that weather has forced cancellation with no games played in 2004 and 2014.

May 5, 2017 - 10:04am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Empire Cup College Showcase, sports, soccer, news.

The 2017 Empire Cup College Showcase is a two-weekend event a big financial boost to the local tourism industry, but a week of rain, some of it heavy at times, has saturated playing fields and forced the cancellation of this weekend's games.

As for next weekend's games, that depends on the weather.

"We've got to hope for a couple of dry days this week," said Kelly Rapone, director of tourism for the Genesee County Chamber of Commerce.

Over two weekends, more than 3,000 soccer players from all over the Northeast were expected to fill up local hotels and eat at local restaurants, but that $1.1 million of expected economic impact has been cut in half.

Everybody, from the hoteliers to the event's hosts to the participants are hugely disappointed by the rainout, Rapone said.

The event is a chance for top high school players to showcase their talent for college recruiters and give them a chance to play against some of the other top players in the Northeast and Canada.

This weekend, the boys' championship games were scheduled to be played. Next weekend, girls' games are scheduled.

May 1, 2017 - 12:07pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in tourism, business, batavia, sports.

Press release:

The 2017 Empire Cup College Showcase has teamed with Elite Tournaments and U.S. Youth Soccer Region 1 to bring the Eastern Regional League to Batavia. Over the next two weekends (May 6-7 and 13-14) Genesee County will host more than 3,000 soccer players, plus coaches, families and fans, as the tournaments are played at the Batavia Sports Park and Genesee Community College fields.

Historically this tournament draws teams from throughout New Jersey, Delaware, New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, and Canada. With this new partnership, the event has shown significant growth and the influx of visitors and the Genesee County Chamber of Commerce estimates that this event will create an economic impact of more than $1.1 million during the span of the two tournament weekends, from both hotel stays as well as visiting local restaurants and shops. The tournament will generate more than 1,200 room nights at area hotels.

This tournament invites all USYSA and U.S. Club Soccer affiliated boys and girls U13 through U19 teams to participate. Players not only get the opportunity to play with and against the top teams in Region 1; they also get the chance to showcase their abilities and talents to recruits at the collegiate level.

The Genesee County Visitor Center will be open to assist visitors in finding local destinations by providing the new dining guide, maps, visitors guide and area coupons from participating merchants.

April 29, 2017 - 7:04pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in oakfield-alabama, Oakfield, sports, baseball, little league.


The Oakfield-Alabama Little League kicked off its 2017 season today with a parade down Main Street in the Village of Oakfield.

Opening ceremonies also commemorated the lives of Dan Gilbert, James "Beef" Soggs, and Brayden Salvaterra.

Gilbert, baseball coach at Oakfield-Alabama High School and longtime active supporter of Little League, passed away March 1.

Soggs, dedicated to youth sports in Genesee County and a coach in Batavia, was also remembered as part of the moment of silence before the first game.

Brayden was just two weeks shy of his 6th birthday when he died unexpectedly and of a cause that has never been determined. He loved baseball and he and his dad were the third in line for Little League sign-ups for this season. 

His coach -- he played on the Washington Nationals each of the past two seasons -- Normand Fluet, purchased a bench and the Town of Oakfield installed it overlooking one of the T-ball fields with a commemorative plaque.

"The final product is full of memories and certainly ensure that Brayden’s memory is going to live on forever," said League President Andy Merkel.

"One of the things that is great about the Oakfield and Alabama communities is that Little League is a big part of it," Merkel added. "I grew up playing in the Little League program, most of the coaches grew up in the Little League program, most of the parents grew up in the Little League program, and it’s great to see the people from throughout the community who maybe don’t have a connection any longer, don’t have a child or relative playing, but they still come out to support our program, have a hot dog and watch a baseball game. It means a lot to have that community support."












April 28, 2017 - 12:46pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in sports, softball.

Submitted info:

Wednesday Night Coed Softball Game 1 results and box score...
TF Browns Blind Squirrels (away)- 3,3,3,1,0,3,1
The Misfits (home)-                          0,0,3,0,0,1, mercy
Final 14-4 (away)
R. Sumeriski 4-4 3rbi
C. Harrington 2-4 2rbi
A. Ford 1-4
J. Dykstra 2-4 1rbi
M. Jamil 4-4 2rbi
L. Leto 2-4 2rbi
J. Janes 2-4 2rbi
J. Lee 2-4 1rbi
H. Dempsey 2-3
J. Petry 0-3 1rbi...
B. Whitehead 2-3
M. Ayers 2-3 1rbi
C. Weibel 0-3
J. Potter 0-3
S. Curry 2-3
K. McGill 0-3
D. Pirincci 3-3 1rbi
M. Greene 1-3 1rbi
J. Maskell 0-2 1rbi...
The New Batavia Softball League's Coed season begins at Kibbe Park and so do the hopes for 7 teams as they chase the championship trophy. Game 1 unfortunately was over before it started as the TF Brown's Blind Squirrels (1-0) reassure The Misfits (0-1) that the team name does fit in a 14-4 final. Proud of every player on both sides. Fun natured trash talk amongst many friends and some new faces have joined which we are always proud to have. TF Brown's Blind Squirrels (1-0) will be visiting against Wii Not Fit (1-0) Wednesday May 3rd in a rivalry game starting at 6pm. Kibbe Park is where all the games will be held.
Wednesday Coed Week 1 game 2 results and box score...
Final 19-11 (away) Kibbe Park
Allstate (away) 0,0,3,6,7,3,0
97 Rock (home)0,1,0,1,6,3,0
D. Leach 2-4 2rbi
T. Maurer 1-5 1rbi
J. Huertas 5-5 4rbi
T. Lazik 3-4 3rbi
R. Funke 2-4 1rbi
A. Page 0-2 1rbi
D. Callahan 3-4 1rbi
C. Spurling 1-3 1rbi
M. Funke 3-4 2rbi
V. Redman 3-4 1rbi
B. Spurling 2-2 2rbi...
L. Phillips 2-3
N. Cummings 3-4 2rbi
S. George 2-4 1rbi
D. Cervone 2-4 2rbi
D. Marshall 3-4 3rbi
D. Cummings 2-4 1rbi
J. Quinn 1-3 2rbi
D. Ball 1-4
K. Cervone 1-4
T. Quinn 1-3

Game 2 of opening night was a pretty high scoring afair that started off slowly as the rust was getting removed from the off-season for these teams. Andrew Steinbrenner's Allstate (1-0) spread the wealth with everybody batting in at least one run in their matchup against the respected bunch from 97 Rock (0-1) who made a push later but it was too much to overcome. Andrew Steinbrenner's Allstate (1-0) next week go on to face The New Batavia Softball League's sponsored Slapnut Magoos (0-0) starting at 9pm. 97 Rock (0-1) will be also facing The New Batavia Softball League's sponsored Slapnut Magoos (0-0) as they come off their needed bye week right into a double header to catch up. Start time 8pm at Kibbe Park.

Wednesday Night Coed Week 1 game 3 results and Box Scores...
8-7 final (home) Kibbe Park
The Gallaghers (away)0,1,0,2,2,2,0
Wii Not Fit (home)       0,0,6,0,1,0,1
N. Gaudy 2-4 
C. Dowling 4-4
E. Davis 1-3 1rbi
M. Dwyer 3-3 3rbi
J. Stymus 1-2 1rbi
G. Hodges 2-3 2rbi
J. Palaszynski 1-3
V. Redman(roster sub used) 1-3
P. Mutter 1-3
D. Gioia 1-3
N. Nicometi 1-3 1rbi
D. Coley 1-3...
TJ Sauka 1-4
T. Sanchez 1-4
Tom Sauka 2-4 2rbi
T. Towner 1-4
L. Tillery 2-3
J. Marucci 2-3
A. Prusinowski 1-3 1rbi
M. Saxman 3-3 2rbi
J. Martinez 2-3 2rbi
J. Vasi 0-3... (illegal lineup! no more than 3 males in a row)
Now the final game of our opening night for Coed softball under the lights at Kibbe Park Wednesday's turned out to be the game of the week. Absolute prime time deserving. Wii Not Fit (1-0) jumped out to a five run lead after The Gallagher's (0-1) scored first. The Gallagher's then chip, chip, chipped away to tie the game as Wii Not Fit stranded the bases loaded with only one out in the sixth inning. Tom Sauka hit a triple in the top of the seventh inning to avenge a bad news bears base running blunder earlier in the game, but would not get any further. Wii Not Fit the home team with last ups loaded the bases again with one out and M. Dwyer delivered a walk off high sacrifice fly as The Gallagher's could not get out of the bases loaded jam this time. Wii Not Fit (1-0) will be looking at their first loss of the season as they take on the TF Brown's Blind Squirrels (1-0) next week at 6pm. Very fun and entertaining opening night of sofbtall at Kibbe Park.
April 27, 2017 - 2:39pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, alexander, batavia.

Submitted photo and press release:

Last month, the Genesee Amateur Hockey Association held its Beginner Timbits Cross-Ice Jamboree at the Falleti Ice Rink.

For the event, Coach Jim Kujawski divided the 60 plus Beginners into six teams featuring the Blue Line Bandits, Orange Blaze, Purple Rhino’s, Yoda Force, Rowdy Red Rascals and The Avengers.

The teams played three “cross-ice” (Benches to Bleachers) against one another. The games were 16-minutes long with 4-minute shifts. A great time was had by all.

At the beginning of the Jamboree each player’s name was announced as they came onto the ice and they lined up for the National Anthem sung live by Shawn Calmes, of Alexander. They were so in the moment and so excited to begin play.

The players range from age 3 to 14 and their hearts are 100 percent into the learning to skate if needed; and then into developing hockey skills. Coach Kujawski and his team of on-ice helper coaches and dads as well as several GAHA student on-ice helpers follow USA Hockey’s American Development Modules (ADM) and you can experience each player’s development week after week.

The bleachers were packed with parents, siblings, grandparents, aunts and uncles, as well as cousins and friends. At last count there were 375 spectators for this Jamboree. The space along the boards was also filled to capacity. Everyone was into the games.

The GAHA Beginner Program is sponsored by Tim Hortons’ who provided the jerseys and also provided refreshments for the players and family after the event.

GAHA offers this program in two Sessions – Session I begins the first week of October and has 15 on ice sessions; and Session II begins the first week of January and also has 15 on ice sessions. Players are encouraged to attend both sessions.

If interested, you can contact Sharon Valyear-Gray, the Beginner Player coordinator, at [email protected]

April 27, 2017 - 8:57am
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, sports.


The New York State USBC championship tournaments are taking place in Tonawanda (Women) and Endicott (Open), and 22 teams from the Genesee Region -- 19 at the Women's tournament and three at the Open tournament -- are among the participants.

To see who is hitting the road over the next several weeks, click on the Pin Points tab at the top of this page for Mike Pettinella's final bowling column of the 2016-17 season.

April 27, 2017 - 8:53am
posted by Mike Pettinella in Bowling, sports.

With the major tournament season upon us, bowlers are traveling far and wide in an attempt to capture a slice of the hundreds of thousands of dollars up for grabs.

Nationally, the United States Bowling Congress Open Championships run through July 15 at South Point Bowling Plaza in Las Vegas, and the USBC Women’s Championships continue through July 9 at Raising Cane’s River Center in Baton Rouge, La.

(The 2018 USBC Open Championships are scheduled for the Oncenter in Syracuse, but that’s a story for a future column).

In New York, the 93rd NYS Open Championships started last weekend at Ideal Bowling Center in Endicott, near Binghamton, and continue for three more weekends, skipping Mother’s Day weekend of May 12-14.

And the 81st NYS Women’s Championships are in the middle of a five-weekend stay at Tonawanda Bowling Center.

Three Genesee Region USBC teams are entered in the NYS Open Championships – J.E. Currier I and J.E Currier II, captained by Bruce Kraus of Corfu and Roger Stone of East Pembroke, respectively, and the Pretty Birds team captained by Mike Johnson of Batavia.

The Currier teams compete this weekend in Team, Doubles, Singles and All-Events, while Johnson’s team is scheduled for the last weekend, May 19-21.

At the NYS Women’s Championships, 19 teams of bowlers from the Genesee Region USBC are among the 405 teams entered. Only the Syracuse, Rochester and Johnstown local associations have more teams than the GRUSBC contingent.

The GRUSBC teams entered are as follows:

Creekside Construction and Rebels (Bonnie Willey, Geneseo); Huber Farms (Debbie Huber, Attica); Cartwright Racing, Just Us and Wiltsey Girls (Dawn Luckenbach, Caledonia); Crawford’s (Tiffany Crawford, Albion); Star Theatre (Lois Furioso, Wayland); Dogwood Florist (Cheryl Robson, Dansville); Burgio Tire & Co. (Lois Preston, Albion).

Also, MJ Graphics (Mary Jean Durfee, Attica); Thing I and Thing II (Roxanne Clar, Avon); Three Mrs. & A Spare (Amanda Quait, Nunda); Ubi Caritas and Friends (Susan Boring, Albion); Strike Out Cancer (Judy Bzduch, Perry); North Pole (Darleen Balduf, South Byron), and Medina Ladies (Jackie Jurinich, Medina).

You can find complete standings and updates for the NYS Open and Women’s Championships at the NYS USBC website –


While tournament bowling may be all “fun and games” for the competitors, those managing these events are faced with the sometimes difficult task of determining entering averages that truly reflect a bowler’s ability.

Bowlers establish their averages by competing in leagues and, normally, tournaments use a bowler’s highest average over a period of time -- ranging from last season to three seasons ago -- based on at least 21 game in a particular league (although some tournaments are now using 12-game averages).

At one time, all averages were treated equally, regardless of whether a league bowler was competing in a bowling center where it was hard to post high scores for a variety of reasons (by design, improper lane maintenance or too much/too little oil on the lanes).

Several years ago, the USBC implemented “Sport” leagues featuring oil patterns that took away the wall of oil in the middle of the lane that makes it easy to hit the pocket.  With that, leagues were categorized as either Standard (or House) or Sport.

The USBC also established a Sport league conversion scale which gave tournament managers a tool to adjust a bowler’s average. For example, an average of 192 in a Sport league converts to 216 – a number that represents the bowler’s “house shot” average.

Earlier this week, the USBC introduced a third league designation – Challenge – which is meant to take into account leagues that are bowled on lane conditions that fall between Standard and Sport conditions. As in the case of the Sport league, a Challenge conversion chart will be posted on the USBC’s website –

In announcing the move, USBC Executive Director Chad Murphy said many bowlers compete in leagues that are not designated as Sport, leagues where tougher oil patterns are used and where oil patterns are changed periodically over the course of the season.

 “A thorough examination of bowlers who have competed in both Standard and Challenge leagues showed a discrepancy that needed to be addressed,” Murphy said. “The data showed us that using a Sport conversion for some leagues might not be appropriate, but the averages of bowlers competing on certain conditions did warrant a conversion to ensure they are not gaining an unfair advantage when they compete on Standard conditions.

“This is part of our ongoing commitment to ensure the averages of all bowlers accurately reflect a bowler’s ability.”

Starting with the 2017-2018 season, when a league submits its certification, the league secretary must choose one, and only one, of three lane condition options – Standard, Challenge or Sport.

Standard will be for leagues conducted on traditional house conditions, Sport will be for true Sport leagues, while Challenge will be for leagues that use a variety of difficult patterns but are not classified as Sport-only leagues.

The USBC also is looking at data to determine a league’s lane condition designation. Leagues with an average difference of 20 or more pins when compared to a Standard league still will be considered Sport.  Leagues with an average difference between 10-19 pins will fall into the new Challenge condition.

Leagues from the 2016-2017 season will be moved into the appropriate lane condition designation based upon final averages and an analysis, and those leagues will be notified they have been moved into a new classification.

I applaud USBC management and staff for their efforts to create a fair tournament playing field. I hope we will see further measures – possibly a bowling center rating system and stiffer penalties for “sandbaggers” and those who report incorrect averages – down the road.


Congratulations to Vincent Mack of Perry and Cory Hyde of Mount Morris on their entrance into the “300 circle” earlier this month.

Mack, 49, posted his perfect game on April 7 in the Friday Nite 4 League at Perry Bowling Center. Using a Storm IQ, the 194-average bowler finished with the 300 for a 695 series.

Hyde, 35, used a Columbia Ransom Demand to shoot 300-193-209—702 in the Sunday Night Mixed League at Mount Morris Lanes on April 16. He has a 184 average.

For a list of all honor scores in the GRUSBC this season, go to


Genesee Region USBC members planning to attend the association’s banquet/hall of fame dinner have until May 1 to make their reservations by sending an email to [email protected] or [email protected].

The dinner is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. on May 13 at Batavia Downs Gaming on Park Road.

Tournament champions, scholarship winners and Hall of Fame inductee Robert Foss Jr., who is being enshrined posthumously, will be honored.

Tickets are $25, with GRUSBC directors, league secretaries and Hall of Famers receiving a 50 percent discount. No reservations will be taken after May 1.

This is final column for the 2016-17 season. Thank you to all of the businesses who have supported this column. To them and our readers, have a great summer and hope to be back in September.

April 26, 2017 - 6:41pm
posted by Billie Owens in Oakfield, Alabama, sports, little league, news.

From Andy Merkel, president, Oakfield-Alabama Little League:

This Saturday, April 29, will be Opening Day for the Oakfield-Alabama Little League.

There will be a short parade beginning at 9 a.m. at the Oakfield Fire Department, walking on Albert Street to the town park and ball fields on Drake Street.

Participants who'd like to be in the parade are asked to assemble at the fire hall at 8:30 a.m.

Opening day ceremonies immediately follow the parade. At that time, teams, coaches and the Board of Directors will be announced.

This year, a special moment of silence will be held in honor of Coach Dan Gilbert, who recently passed away, and who was instrumental in the OACS baseball program as well as Little League. Also, a bench will be dedicated to a young player who passed away suddenly earlier this year.

Games will kick off at 10 a.m.

April 26, 2017 - 5:58am
posted by Howard B. Owens in sports, track and field, byron-bergen, alexander.

In track and field yesterday, Alexander beat Byron-Bergen 83 2/3 to 57 1/3 in boys and 72-69 in girls.

Boy's results:

Long Jump


Brandon Burke


Triple Jump


Brandon Burke


Shot Put


Paul McDermott




Zach Jasen


Pole Vault


Justin Hannan


High Jump


Brandon Burke




Anderson Bradshaw,

Ben Slenker,

Bryce Davis,

Trevor Zauner








Terrez Smith




Trevor Zauner




Chris McClinic,

Terrez Smith,

Job Smith,

Tyler Cook




Job Smith












Tyler Cook




Trevor Zauner




Phelps, Gardner, Swaps, Burke


Girls results:

Long Jump


Olivia George


Triple Jump


Kelsey Mauer


Shot Put


Olivia George




Nicole Hume


Pole Vault


Reanne Dressler


High Jump


Lauren Hume




Dressler, Fuller, Gonyea, Caballero




Hailee Lowe




Olivia George




Lauren Hume




Hailee Lowe, Hannah Cline, Macie Riggs, Lauren Schmieder




Olivia George




Morgan Fuller




Siomara Caballero




Miriam Tardy




Katie Rebmann




Caballero, Dressler, Rehwaldt, Gonyea


April 22, 2017 - 6:58pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in softball, sports, batavia, news.


After running teams for a couple of years in Byron-Bergen, Stan Kaus and Matt Landers got to talking last year about getting more girls involved in fastpitch softball and bringing the teams back to Batavia.

"After last year we decided there are more girls in Batavia who want to play softball, so we kind of looked at each other and said, ‘Are you sure you want to go bigger?’ and we said, ‘as long as the parents step up and help,' " Kaus said.

The response, Kaus said, "has been phenomenal."

The new Batavia Girls Fastpitch is incorporating as a nonprofit with an eight-person board. There are eight new coaches, 17 sponsors and so far 35 girls signed up.

There are two 12-and-under teams and for the first time a 10-U team. Next Tuesday, they will host a meeting to form at least one, and maybe two, 15-U teams, which will add another 12 to maybe more than 20 more girls participating.

"I think the word will get out," Kaus said. "I think a lot of girls felt their only choice for playing ball was Little League. I think if they can come out and watch softball and see fastpitch, I think it will be great."

The Stingers, as the teams are known, also have new uniforms.

"The fact that it's back and we're breathing new life into fastpitch softball is kind of exciting," Kaus said.






April 21, 2017 - 3:59pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, sports, Announcements, dan gilbert, Oakfield, Alabama.

On Saturday, May 13th  the community and school district in Oakfield-Alabama will be having a varsity baseball field dedication ceremony for the late Dan Gilbert. The longtime coach and teacher was a great guy and is sorely missed after losing a long and couragous battle with cancer.

  • At 10 a.m. on May 13, there will be a community softball game for adults and home run derby for kids. There will also be basket raffles, concessions and face painting.
  • At noon will be the field dedication and ceremony.
  • At 1 p.m. there will be a varsity baseball game O-A vs. Lyndonville. 

Organizers are asking the public to consider donating an item to be raffled or making a monetary donation to benefit the Oakfield-Alabama Central School baseball program and to fund a scholarship in honor of Coach Gilbert. All proceeds to benefit the OACS Baseball Program in memory of Coach Dan Gilbert.

Anything that you can donate to help make Dan's dedication ceremony a special day will be greatly welcomed and appreciated. Make checks payable to: OACS, and send attention to Dan Gilbert Memorial, 7001 Lewiston Road, Oakfield, NY 14125.

If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact Mary Kalinownski at: --  or Marc Johnson at 948-5838, or [email protected]

Here is a summary of Coach Gilbert's coaching achievements:

●  Section V Coach of the Year – 2001, 2003, 2005, 2008

●  Genesee Region Coach of the Year – 2000, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2008, 2010

●  Genesee Region Coach of the Year, Softball – 2011 (Dan’s only season as softball coach)

●  Coach Gilbert’s teams won 12 Genesee Region League Baseball titles

●  Coach Gilbert’s teams won four Section V titles (2000, 2001, 2003, 2009) and advanced to States in 2003


●  Overall record of 284-Wins against 58-Losses

According to his family and friends, "less quantifiable, yet just as impressive as his coaching accolades, was Dan’s uncanny ability to see something special in each of his students and/or players. He made believers out of his players and students which allowed them to dig deeper, become more confident and excel at levels they never knew were possible. This talent seemed to come easy to Dan, and for that, thousands of kids from our community are grateful."
April 12, 2017 - 7:33am
posted by Mike Pettinella in Bowling, sports.

If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again – with a different bowling ball -- until you do succeed!

For Harris Busmire, a lifelong Bergen resident and 25-year assistant chef at the Viking Valhalla Restaurant, that was the story of a memorable night of league bowling last Tuesday (April 4) in the G&W Vending League at his hometown lanes, Rose Garden Bowl.

Busmire recorded 30 strikes in his three games – a notable achievement – but what makes it more remarkable is that all of those 1-3 pocket hits came after the fifth frame of the first game. In other words, the 52-year-old right-hander struck on 30 of his last 31 deliveries!

His games were 214, 277 and 300 for a 791 series, with the last game marking his third USBC-certified perfect game. His previous 300 was part of an 811 series (his lone 800 effort) in March of 2003.

“I really struggled early,” Busmire said, pointing out that he used two bowling balls in the first five frames before switching to a Columbia 300 Enigma in the sixth frame. “Nothing was working.”

Indeed. He missed a single pin spare in the first frame and spared in the second frame with a MOTIV Talon before leaving two splits (and failing to convert them) and then getting a spare with an Ebonite Disruption.

“When I switched to the Enigma, the whole lane opened up,” he said. “I just kept my hand behind the ball and I was able to use three different lines.”

Busmire said every ball from the sixth frame of game one to the end of game three was solid in the pocket except for the fourth frame of game two when he left the 3-6-10 on lane 8.

“I came too much off the side of the ball, almost over the top,” Busmire said of the errant shot. He did pick the spare, however, and went on to string 20 consecutive strikes.

Despite chronic knee problems (he wears a knee brace when he bowls, along with a hat and shorts), Busmire bowls in three leagues at Rose Garden and averages 203 on Tuesday, 195 on Wednesday and 190 on Thursday.

Busmire wasn’t the only high scorer last week as Chris Bardol of Rochester continued his super bowling in the G&W Vending League with a 299 game and 811 series – his third 800 set to go along with a pair of 300 games and the 299.

Other recent honor scores:

-- Scott Budde of Albion registered his first 300 game, capping a 716 series, on April 2 during the New York State Elks 70th Annual Bowling Tournament at Boulevard Bowl in Schenectady.

His perfect game came on the first weekend of the tournament, which runs for five weekends at Town & Country Lanes in Guilderland (Team event) and at Boulevard Bowl (Doubles & Singles).

Budde, who turned 53 last month, started with 202 and 214 before burying all 12 balls in the 1-3 pocket for the 300.

A sales rep for Kaman Automation in Tonawanda, Budde said he was more nervous after the game was over than during it.

“I didn’t know what do to after it was over,” he said.

Budde used a new Roto-Grip Daredevil bowling ball to eclipse his previous high game – what he termed a “wacky” 284 in the early 1990’s.  He took about 18 years off from bowling before starting up again a couple years ago.

His 300—716 came during the Doubles event where he and his partner, Dan Ward, posted 1,470 with handicap (1,260 scratch) to top the standings.

-- Danny Hunt of Geneseo posted a 300 game at Livingston Lanes in his hometown on April 9 in the Sunday Evening Mixed League.


Perry residents Joann Van Duser and daughter, Rachel, combined for a 1,306 score with handicap on the final day of competition to claim the Women’s Doubles title at the Genesee Region USBC Association Tournament.

Joann (143 average) rolled 431 scratch while Rachel (176 average) posted 603 scratch to edge another mother-daughter team in Laurie Cole and Virginia Metzger of Albion (1,278). Ironically, both teams were bowling on the same pair of lanes during the tournament’s last squad.

While the number of entries continues to lag, there were more bowlers than last year. In the Open Team event at Letchworth Pines in Portageville, entries rose from 16 to 20, and in the Women's Team event, entries increased from five to 10. Also, in Open Doubles, (Doubles & Singles took place at Perry Bowling Center) entries jumped from 32 in 2016 to 51 this year.

According to GRUSBC President Tom Fluker, a committee of GRUSBC directors and selected bowlers will be put together to evaluate the tournament and to implement changes next year in an effort to increase participation.

Unofficial champions:

Open Team -- McClurg Five, Perry Bowling Center, 3,755. Members are Tracy Werner, Steve Werner, Wes McClurg, Beth Ann Kaczmarek and Dave Kaczmarek.

Women's Team – King Brothers, Bennington Lanes, 2,572. Members are Debbie Huber, Carley King, Angela Zymowski and Mary Meyer.

Open Doubles -- Casey Palmer Sr. and Casey Palmer Jr., 1,623.

Women's Doubles -- Joann Van Duser and Rachel Van Duser, 1,306.

Open Singles -- Al Vlietstra, 860.

Women's Singles -- Caroline Appleby, 664.

Open All-Events -- Casey Palmer Jr., 2,358.

Women's All-Events -- Patricia Gilbertson, 1,913.


The Genesee Region USBC East (Wyoming and Livingston counties) defeated the GRUSBC West (Genesee and Orleans counties), 45-43, in the third annual Senior Cup match at Scopano’s Lanes in Oakfield on Saturday (April 8).

Competition in the 50-and-over event took place in Doubles, Singles and Baker Team. The teams tied after the Doubles, and the East led by two points after Singles. The teams split the 18 points awarded during the Baker Team match, enabling the East squad to break a 1-1 tie in the series.

Bob Santini led the way for the East by winning all three of his matches, posting 290—732 in Singles. Team captain Kevin Gray Sr. also won his three matches while Brenda Komenda averaged 220, second only to Santini’s 234.

Other East members were John LaGeorge, Jerry Davis, Al Vlietstra, Mark Comstock, Eric Galton, Brett Van Duser and Don Parrott.

For the West, Roger Stone and Bruce Kraus each averaged 217.

Other East members were captain Paul Spiotta, Scott Gibson, Scott Shields, Joe Mortellaro, Gregg Wolff, Bob Hodgson, Jerry Currier and Joe Trigilio.


The GRUSBC Association Banquet & Hall of Fame Dinner is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. on May 13 at Batavia Downs Gaming on Park Road.

Tournament champions, scholarship winners and Hall of Fame inductee Robert Foss Jr., who is being enshrined posthumously, will be honored.

Tickets are $25, with GRUSBC directors, league secretaries and Hall of Famers receiving a 50 percent discount. Reservations can be made through May 1 by sending an email to [email protected].

No reservations will be taken after May 1 and no one will be allowed to “walk in” on May 13. The banquet is open to all GRUSBC members.

The final Pin Points column for the 2016-17 season is scheduled to appear on The Batavian on April 27.

April 11, 2017 - 1:08pm
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, sports.

Chris Bardol tacked on another 800 series (811) while Harris Busmire struck on 30 of his last 31 deliveries for 277-300--791 in G&W Vending League play last week at Rose Garden Bowl in Bergen.

For a list of high scores from the week of April 4, click on the Pin Points tab at the top of this page.

Fans of Mike Pettinella's Pin Points column can read his article a day early this week as it will appear on Wednesday, exclusively on The Batavian, the area's No. 1 source for online news.

April 6, 2017 - 3:13pm
posted by Billie Owens in GCC, sports, golf, Bocce, news, Cougar Classic Golf Tournament.

Press release:

The 2017 Cougar Classic Golf Tournament is just a few months away and registration is now open for the second annual event scheduled for Monday, July 24, which will once again take place at the prestigious Stafford Country Club, 8873 Morganville Road, (Route 237) Stafford. With 88 golfers, 22 teams, 60 sponsors and tons of fun the inaugural event in 2016 raised approximately $25,000 for student scholarships!

The registration deadline is June 16, so don't wait until the last minute!

"We're looking forward to building on last year's success," Jerry Reinhart, who is returning as chair of the Cougar Classic Golf Tournament. Reinhart is member of GCC's Class of 1971, founder of Access Rentals and president of Reinhart Enterprises Inc.

"Although we saw a few raindrops last year, we're anticipating another day of quality golfing among friends and colleagues, and all for a great cause," Reinhart said. "As an alumnus myself, I can attest to the value a GCC degree and the important contribution the College makes to our community overall."

Up to 36 foursomes will once again take part in the 18-hole event, which tees off in "shotgun" style at 12:30 p.m. New this year will be a bocce tournament, welcoming more than just golfers to join the fun. Registration will begin at 11:30 a.m. with a light lunch available. Beginning at 5:30 p.m., participants are invited to attend dinner in the club house where a silent auction and prize drawings will conclude the event. Games including Skins, Beat the Pro, Longest Drive (Men's and Women's), Closest to the Pin and a Putting Contest add excitement to the day and gives everyone a chance to walk away with one of a number of prizes.

Sponsorships of all kinds are currently being sought to support the event and student scholarships. The sponsorship levels are: Platinum $3,000; Diamond/Dinner $2,000; Gold/Lunch $1,500; Silver/Beverage Cart Sponsor/$1,000; Titanium/Tee $500; and Bronze/Hole $100. In-kind support, golf games, and clever or creative sponsorships are also appreciated. The first gracious sponsor is the John W. Danforth Company, which pledged at the $1,000 Silver Level.

The cost per foursome is $500, or $125 per individual golfer. The cost to participate in the Bocce Tournament is $200 per team of four or $60 per individual player. For anyone interested in attending the event and supporting local students but cannot make the golf tournament, the dinner-only option is only $20 per person.

To receive a Cougar Classic printed invitation, participate as a golfer, bocce competitor, sponsor, volunteer or dinner guest, please contact Jennifer Zambito at (585) 343-0055, ext. 6265 or email the alumni office at [email protected]. For further information, including golf and sponsorship registration and event updates, check out the Cougar Classic website at

April 5, 2017 - 10:39am
posted by Howard B. Owens in sports, wrestling, track and field, schools, education, news, batavia.



The Batavia High School wrestling team, and boys and girls track teams, were honored by the City School District board on Tuesday night with proclamations for their 2016-17 Section V titles.

The wrestling team: Joseph Allegue, Richard Lamkin, Lazavia Price, Bohdan Andriychuk, John Folger, Eric Gimlin, Zeshan Armstrong, Jeffrey Cherry, Ryan Kuhn, Gavin Schmidt, Dylan Zurek and Kaden Marucci, and coaches – Richard Stewart, Kenneth Darch and Thomas Garlock.

Boys track: Campbell Andersen, Samuel Bartz, Ryan Bieniek, Isaiah Ciociola, Freddie Cunningham, Trey Kemp, Jerry Reinhart, Ian SanFratello, Chandler Baker, Andrew Cunningham, Eric Davis Jr., Damian Escobar, Marques Hargrave, Ryan Kabel, Nathan Loria, Luke Maltese, Nichalas Neid, Anthony Ray, Tyler Stewart, Julio Vazquez, Valentino Zinni, Matthew Adams, Cameron Austin, John Bruggman, Evan Bartz, Taiyo Iburi-Bethel, Zakariah Jantzi, David Pillo, Jaheim Smith, Jaydon Barber, Brock Every, Garrick Havens, Daemon Konieczny, Mario Rosales, Nate Crane (Letchworth CSD), Job Smith (Alexander CSD), and Kyle VanSlyke (Letchworth), and coaches – Nick Burk, William McMullen, Richard Boyce, William Buckenmeyer, Andrew Cowan, Daniel Geiger, Aaron Sherman and John Williams.

Girls track: Natalie Bigelow, Edmarie Calderon-Torres, Margaret Cecere, Samantha Cohen, Lindsie Cook, Alexis DeLong, Taler Fonda, Aja LeCointe-Wilkinson, Madison Moore, Katherine Wiseley, Rachel Denise, Kiaya Franklin, Tanner Kolb, Madison Murray, Alexis Stork, Paige Wasilewski, Claire Zickl, Brianna Bromley, Emily Caccamise, Elisabeth Cohen, Hannah Finkney, Regan Henrici, Sarah Adams, Juliana Branche, Arianna Brown, Camryn Buck, Sydney DellaPenna, Brianna Gutman, Madeline Taggart, Jadin Vasciannie and Kaitlin Ange, and Coaches – Nick Burk, William McMullen, Richard Boyce, William Buckenmeyer, Andrew Cowan, Daniel Geiger, Aaron Sherman and John Williams.

Photos: Top, wrestlers Joe Allegue and Jack Folger with school Board President Pat Burk and Coach Rick Steward; and girls track members Katherine Wiseley and Madison Murray with Burk and Coach Nick Burk.


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