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December 3, 2015 - 3:35pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, harness racing, Batavia Downs.

Photo of Mach This Way with driver Ron Beback Jr., courtesy of Paul White.

By Tim Bojarski, Batavia Downs Media Relations

It was round two of the heavyweight fight between Mach This Way and Memumsnotnice in the $9,500 distaff pacing feature at Batavia Downs on Wednesday night (Dec. 2) and when the race was run, Mach This Way avenged last week's result. 

In a complete role reversal from a week ago, Memumsnotnice (Ray Fisher Jr.) was forced to sit in second as Mach This Way (Ron Beback Jr.) forced her way to the lead and made it clear that no one else would head her. Then over a rain-soaked track, they proceeded to splash to the half in :57.3.

As the girls made their way past three-quarters, Mach This Way and Memumsnotnice separated themselves from the rest of the field and it became a two-horse race at the top of the lane. From there, Memumsnotnice pulled and tried to overtake, but Mach This Way dug in and toughed-out a solid length victory in 1:57.

It was the seventh win of the year for Mach This Way ($3.30), including four wins in six consecutive Batavia Downs starts and the winners share enhanced her financial situation to $55,130 for owner William Emmons. James Clouser Jr. trains the 6-year-old daughter of Mach Three.

Several horsemen had multi-win evenings. Ron Beback Jr. scored a driving triple while Kevin Cummings registered a double. Trainers Kirk Desmond, James Clouser Jr. and Russell Bratt all sent two winners to post.

Live racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Friday (Dec. 4) with post time at 6:15 p.m.

December 2, 2015 - 3:55pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Notre Dame, basketball, sports, batavia.



The season opener for the Notre Dame Girls Basketball Team didn't exactly go the way Dave Pero Sr. would have liked, with a tough loss to Gates Chili, 42-33, but Pero couldn't have been prouder of his son.

Dave Perio Jr., was appointed the Gates Chili coach during the off-season, and after three years as an assistant to his father at Notre Dame, the younger Pero gets his first opportunity to run his own program.

"I've been happy for him since the day he got the job," said Pero Sr. "It's a great opportunity for him. It's his second win. He's 2-0. He's got a nice road ahead of him. Let's hope he keeps building and great things are going to happen."

Always intense on the sidelines, Pero Jr. was perhaps even a little more animated making his first appearance as a head coach in a gym where he played high school ball and helped the Lady Irish to a couple of championship seasons.

"Coming in here, seeing my brother on the other bench and my family here, and I've coached these girls on Notre Dame's team for three years, so I know every single one of them," Pero Jr. said. "I know they wanted to beat me as much as I wanted to win. I'm trying to build a program at Gates Chili, so a win at Gates is just as big for my program. I loved my time here, but unfortunately, I had to move on and I'm trying to do the best I can where I am now."

He said the win was bittersweet because he hates seeing his father lose, but he needed his girls to play winning basketball.

"My father is my mentor, one of my best friends," Pero Jr. said. "It was tough coaching against him."

Both coaches said the game was like watching twin teams battle on the hardwood.

"I teach the same things he does," Pero Jr. said. "Hard work, boxing out, diving on the floor for loose balls. Everything I know, I learned from him."

Both coaches are optimistic about their teams' prospects for 2015-16, even though they both have young teams. Pero Sr. said the loss was just a small setback. It doesn't derail the season.

"My expectations are high, even after a loss tonight," Pero Sr. said. 

One roster change that makes Notre Dame a bit younger than expected this season is the departure of Shea Norton, a 6' 2" senior who was one of the area's dominant girls basketball players last season, who decided she would rather be a cheerleader than a hoops star. It's a change of heart Pero Sr. didn't want to discuss other than to say, "We're moving on."






To purchase prints of photos, click here.

November 27, 2015 - 4:31pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, harness racing, Batavia Downs.

By Tim Bojarski, Batavia Downs Media Relations

Racing fans may want to take a break from their holiday Black Friday shopping to check out tonight's Batavia Downs live racing program.

The 12-race card features very healthy carryover pools in both the Pick-5 and Pick-6 wagers.

The Pick-5 that runs from race five to race nine begins with a carryover pool of $864. And the elusive Pick-6, that starts with race seven and runs through race 12, has a carryover pool of $2,137.

First race post time is 6:15 tonight. Racing at America’s oldest lighted harness track continues three nights a week through Dec. 12.

November 27, 2015 - 4:29pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, harness racing, Batavia Downs.

(Kevin Cummings driving Memumsnotnice out in front.)

By Tim Bojarski, Batavia Downs Media Relations

After fading late in her last two outings, Memumsnotnice displayed true grit this week to win the $9,500 top distaff class at Batavia Downs on Wednesday night (Nov. 25)

Downs leading reinsman, Kevin Cummings, rousted Memumsnotnice off the gate and into the lead before pacing unchallenged to the half in :58.1. But it was at that point it became a true horse race. Mach this Way (Ron Beback Jr.) pulled first-over at that station and drew alongside the leader. The pair then paced in tandem through the cold night air, for the next quarter mile in :28.1.

They continued their duel into the far turn before Memumsnotnice got stout-hearted and forged ahead of her foe. When she established a length advantage, Memumsnotnice dug in and would not let anyone get closer than that. She hit the wire first in 1:56.

It was the sixth win of the year for Memumsnotnice ($4.90), including four wins in her last six starts at Batavia Downs. The winner’s share of the purse pushed the mare’s 2015 bankroll to $51,018 for owners Thatsideofthefence LLC and John Mungillo, who also trains the daughter of Jereme’s Jet.

Three drivers won ten of the 12 races on Wednesday. Kevin Cummings had a four-bagger while Shawn McDonough and Dave McNeight III both scored hat-tricks. Trainer Kirk Desmond also sent two of his students to the winner’s enclosure.

Batavia Downs would like to wish all horsemen and fans a very Happy Thanksgiving and looks forward to the next card of live racing which will be held on Friday (Nov. 27) at 6:15 p.m. Just a reminder; there are only eight racing days left in the year.

November 22, 2015 - 2:22pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, harness racing, Batavia Downs.

Adversary Seelster with driver Ron Beback Jr., photo courtesy of Paul White.

By Tim Bojarski, Batavia Downs Media Relations

How do you top a five-win night? Simple; win six! That’s exactly the kind of weekend Batavia Downs dash driving leader Kevin Cummings had.

After winning five races on Friday, Cummings took six of the 12 races on the card Saturday night, including the last five straight races. And he finished second twice and third three times besides. In fact, he was only off the board once all night. That performance translated into a .676 UDR for the night.

Cummings took pictures with Lucky Nadotremblay ($2.80), B Eva’s Lucky Lad ($5.50), In The Clear ($7.20), Camstar ($10.20), Noble Legend ($7.50) and Precise Accusation ($18).

As a result of his two-day winning spree, Cummings now has 115 victories for the meet and that puts him 39 ahead of his nearest competitor. For 2015, Cummings has registered 318 wins and $1.7 million in earnings. That win total is only 16 shy of his career best, which was set last year.

In the $10,000 Open pace feature at Downs, a two-horse duel resulted in Adversary Seelster being the best among seven of the best resident pacers.

Jokerman (Jim McNeight) left fast to take control of the front, but Adversary Seelster (Ron Beback Jr.) came out early to overtake him by the quarter. Positions remained the same until Youwillwishyouhad (Kevin Cummings) pulled at the half and charged hard at the leader.

Cummings pushed the pace to three-quarters, gaining a slight advantage on the outside at that point. But after Beback popped the plugs on Adversary Seelster, the gelding found another gear and responded in kind. He put away Youwillwishyouhad and then fended off a late challenge by Jokerman before hitting the wire first in 1:55.2.

It was the fourth win of the year for Adversary Seelster, and the winning time was a seasonal mark for him. The winner’s share of the purse pushed his 2015 earnings to $35,100 for owners Keith Pinkowski and Curtis Edholm. Adversary Seelster is trained by the currently red hot Mihajlo Zdjelar Jr.

Jim McNeight and Ron Beback Jr. both had driving doubles, while conditioner Alex Giuliani sent three of his trainees to the winner’s circle.

Live racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Wednesday (Nov. 25) at 6:15 p.m.

November 22, 2015 - 2:16pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, harness racing, Batavia Downs.

Lutetium (Kevin Cummings)

By Tim Bojarski, Batavia Downs Media Relations

It’s an old story, but one that’s frequently told in western New York. Lutetium wins another $9,500 Open trot feature race at Batavia Downs on Friday night (Nov. 20).

Leaving from the outside (post six) in an abbreviated field, Lutetium (Kevin Cummings) shot right to the front and took a lead he would never relinquish. With a loose, two-length advantage for most of the race, Lutetium cut quarters of :28.2, :58.3 and 1:28.2. As he opened up a wider margin past that last station, Cummings guided Lutetium to the wire first in 1:58.2 as the rest of the field viewed his efforts while arguing for minor spoils.

It was the tenth win of the season for Lutetium ($3.20) and sixth victory at Batavia Downs this meet. The winner’s share of the purse inflated his 2015 earnings to $80,371 for owner Colleen Girdlestone. Mark Laidlaw trains the 8-year-old gelded son of Credit Winner.

The Downs' leading driver, Kevin Cummings, registered a quintet of victories Friday night, extending his already insurmountable lead in the dash win category for the meet. He finished first with Lutetium ($3.20), Creating A Dream ($3.10), Leave Your Mark ($8.90), Livefreeordiehard ($8.10) and Rebel Teen ($4.80). Shawn McDonough and Ray Fisher Jr. also had driving doubles.

On the training side, John Mungillo sent three horses to the winner’s circle and Mihalo Zdjelar Jr. did the same with two.

November 20, 2015 - 1:23pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, harness racing, Batavia Downs.

By Tim Bojarski, Batavia Downs Media Relations

Wind gusts topping 50 mph could not dissuade the best effort of Mach This Way after she got aired-out for more than half a mile before winning the $10,000 Open mares pacing feature at Batavia Downs on Wednesday night (Nov. 18).

The race was basically the tale of two mares. Memumsnotnice (Drew Monti) who shot right to the front to cut the fractions as she normally does and Mach This Way (Ron Beback Jr.), who was taken back to sixth until past the quarter pole.

Coming to the head of the stretch the first time, Beback pulled Mach This Way first-over and started a slow, methodical march towards the leader. By the time the field hit the three-quarter pole, Mach This Way was almost alongside Memumsnotnice and had no intention of stopping. The pair broke away from the pack, paced stride-for-stride around the far turn and matched steps all the way down the stretch until Mach This Way got a late advantage to win by a half-length in 1:56.4.

It was the sixth win of the year for Mach This Way ($17.80) and pushed her earnings to $48,005 for owner William Emmons. James Clouser Jr. trains the Mach Three mare.

Ron Beback Jr. had an outstanding night in the sulky, winning four races. He took pictures with Dirt Track Momma ($6.90), Mach This Way ($17.80), China Dream ($3.30) and Carman Coyote ($13.20). Drew Monti, Jack Flanigen and Ray Fisher Jr. all scored driving doubles. Trainers James Clouser Jr. and Maria Rice also sent two horses each to the winner’s enclosure.

Live racing resumes at Batavia Downs tonight (Nov. 20) at 6:15.

November 18, 2015 - 1:41pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, baseball, U.S. Baseball Academy.

Genesee Community College is hosting a four week baseball camp starting Jan. 9. Genesee Community College Head Coach Skip Sherman will direct the program in conjunction with U.S. Baseball Academy.

Classes are available for players in grades 1-12 and are limited to six players per coach. Sessions are offered in advanced hitting, pitching, catching, fielding and baserunning. Space is limited. Registration is now under way.

For more information, visit, or call toll-free 866-622-4487.

November 18, 2015 - 1:38pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, batavia downs, harness racing.

By Tim Bojarski, Batavia Downs Media Relations:

Horsemen racing at Batavia Downs are reminded of draw schedule changes for Thanksgiving week.

A double draw will take place on Tuesday (Nov. 24) for races cards on to be held on Friday (Nov. 27) and Saturday (Nov. 28). The entry box will close at the normal time of 9 a.m. You must also enter horses for Wednesday's qualifiers on Tuesday (Nov. 24) by 10 a.m.  

All program information, including driver changes, must be submitted to the judges by 2 p.m. on Tuesday (Nov. 24).

Qualifying races will remain at the regular time of 4:45 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 25.

There are 12 more race cards remaining in the 2015 season that concludes on Dec. 12. Post time for all remaining cards will be 6:15 p.m.

For more information please visit the horsemen's link at

November 17, 2015 - 1:44pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, Notre Dame, batavia.

Submitted photos. Top -- newest Athletic Hall of Fame inductees: Alex Sepi, Lisa Dwyer Lenhart, Dawn Sherwood Norton and Walter Szczesny; middle -- retired teacher and coach Bill Sutherland; above -- and John and Tom Borrelli, who accepted an award on behalf of their father, Nicholas.

Press release:

On Saturday, Nov. 14, friends and supporters of Notre Dame High School enjoyed a “Tailgate Party” themed event as they celebrated Sports Night at Slomba Hall in Batavia. They also honored people newly chosen to be inducted into the Athletic Hall of Fame.

The night started with a welcome from the school’s new principal, Wade Bianco, who spoke about all the exciting things going on at Notre Dame High School.

Athletic Director Mike Rapone introduced the Athletic Hall of Fame inductees who included:

  • Alex Sepi -- ’84
  • Lisa Dwyer Lenhart -- '83
  • Dawn Sherwood Norton -- ’79
  • Walter Szczesny -- ’76

Retired teacher and coach Bill Sutherland, was also honored for his 41 years of service to Notre Dame.

Nicholas Borrelli was inducted for his contributions to Notre Dame High School and his award was accepted by his sons, John Borrelli, who is the current chairman of the Notre Dame High School Board of Trustees, and Tom Borrelli.

All honorees spoke of their appreciation of Notre Dame High School and their educational and athletic experiences there.

Notre Dame High School of Batavia has been ranked #1 among private schools in Western New York for the past eight years by Buffalo Business First. In addition, the Notre Dame Fighting Irish Interscholastic Athletic programs also ranked #1 in Genesee, Wyoming and Orleans counties.

November 15, 2015 - 10:50pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Batavia HS, football, sports.


Cheektowaga's athletic playmakers and Batavia's inability to convert a couple of scoring opportunities in the first half were the big difference in the Blue Devils' second consecutive try at a Far West Regional Championship.

A win would have propelled Batavia into the state championship Class B semifinal. Instead, as happened last year, the team traveling to Syracuse is the Warriors.

Batavia led from the opening drive until nine minutes left in the game, when Cheektowaga tied it up at 36-36. When Batavia couldn't sustain a drive on the following possession, the Warriors moved the ball downfield effectively and scored on a four-yard by Tyr Willingalea with 1:36 left on the clock. A turnover with less than 20 seconds left in the game, and the score 43-36 gave Cheektowaga the championship.

"They played so well and they've been such tough kids," said Head Coach Brennan Briggs. "My heart breaks for them. I mean, right now, my heart's broken, really. These guys, I love them. We've got 18 seniors and it's going to be very tough saying goodbye to them."

Briggs felt coming into the game his team would be able to run on the Warriors and Dom Mogavero put together a great game. He rushed for 125 yards on 33 carries. He carried the ball in twice and scored another touchdown on defense with a fumble recovery. QB Greg Mruczek had four carries for 76 yards, including a long of 61 yards. Ray Leach carried the ball six times for 29 yards, and Jonathan Barber had two carries for 19 yards and a TD.

Mruczek was 7-20 passing, including two interceptions. 

Ryan Hogan caught four of those passes for 108 yards, including a long of 58 yards. 

Batavia scored easily on its first drive and scored again less than a minute later on an Adonis Davis interception, making the score 14-0. Cheektowaga struck back quickly on its next position, but from then on until the fourth quarter, Batavia always managed to keep the game out of reach of the Warriors. Or, the Warriors used their athletic weapons to keep the Blue Devils in reach.

Cheektowaga had the last three scores of the game, a 27-yard run by Willingelea that put the Warriors within eight, a five-yard run by Eric Bartnik and a two-point conversion that tied the score, and then the final TD that sealed Batavia's fate.

"They're an athletic team," Briggs said. "They've been known for it all year. They've been down and they've come back. Even when we were up two scores, I said it to my guys, 'They are the comeback kids. They did it last year and they did it this year. They're a good football team.' "



Leach picking up a fumble that set up a Batavia TD.



Terren Lorrie was defensive player of the game.








To purchase prints of game photos, click here.

November 15, 2015 - 2:51pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, Batavia Downs, harness racing.

Western Alumni and driver Ray Fisher Jr., photo courtesy of Paul White.

By Tim Bojarski, Batavia Downs Media Relations

The weather was clear but Western Alumni made it rain Saturday night (Nov. 14) at Batavia Downs when he went worst-to-first at 12-1 in the field of seven to capture the $10,000 Open pace feature.

It was a jailbreak off the gate as Adversary Seelster (Ron Beback Jr.), Jokerman (Jim McNeight) and post time favorite Cobble Beach (Kevin Cummings) went three deep for the first two furlongs, tripping the timer in :26.4. The field settled itself just in time for Western Alumni (Ray Fisher Jr.) to pull from seventh and start his outside trek towards the leader.

At the half, Button Fly (Shawn McDonough) pulled out in front of Western Alumni and provided a windshield for him to the top of the lane. From there, Western Alumni tipped three-deep and Fisher proceeded to rock-n-knock to a length victory over a fast-closing Best Ears (Jack Flanigen) in 1:54.3.

It was the fifth win of the year for Western Alumni ($26.20), pushing his earnings to $49,986 for 2015. Jerry Nugent Jr. trains the 7-year-old Western Hanover gelding for North Creek Racing LLC.

Trainer JD Perrin widened his lead as the top dash-winning trainer of the meet by sending four horses to the winner’s enclosure. Barn stars for the night included Dancin Thea ($8.40), Meadowlandcampbell E ($2.50), Youwillwishyouhad ($2.50) and Veto Hanover ($5.00). Drivers Drew Monti, Kevin Cummings, Jim McNeight and Ray Fisher Jr. all won two races.

Live racing at Batavia Downs resumes on Wednesday night (Nov. 18) with post time at 6:15.

November 14, 2015 - 1:54pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Williams Park, batavia, football, Turkey Bowl, sports.


Photos from the finals of the annual Turkey Bowl at Williams Park. We expect to hear later who won.







November 14, 2015 - 1:11pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, harness racing, Batavia Downs.

Studio City (#3) with driver Dave McNeight III pullls ahead to win the Open trot Friday night at Batavia Downs. Photo courtesy of Paul White.

By Tim Bojarski, Batavia Downs Media Relations:

Racing brave in a first-over trip, lightly regarded Studio City ($19.80) scored his second straight top-class win, taking the $10,000 Open trot at Batavia Downs on Friday night (Nov. 13).

After Curious George (Jack Flanigen) directed the field to a :28.4 quarter, Studio City (Dave McNeight III) pulled first-over at three-eighths and started his march to the front. The outer flow continued to grow as Write That Down (Shawn McDonough) joined the fray in a :59.1 half.

When the group hit three-quarters, Studio City and Curious George were neck and neck before Write That Down tipped three-deep around the last turn and Justgottogetthere (Ron Beback Jr.) found room in the passing lane. The quartet battled four-abreast all the way down the lane with Studio City getting up to photo out Justgottogetthere in 1:59.2. Write That Down finished third.

Two heads and a neck separated the top four finishers of the race.

It was the fifth win of the year for Studio City and pushed the 2015 earnings of the 6-year-old Conway Hall gelding to $50,407 for owners Scott Woogen and Lisa Denison. Lisa Lederhouse trains the winner.

Sean McDonough continued to be the hottest driver on the grounds, winning four races on Friday. That moved him in to third place among the locals for dash wins this meet. The leader in that race, Kevin Cummings, had a driving double along with Ron Beback Jr. and Dave McNeight III.

Racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Saturday (Nov. 14) with post time set at 6:15 p.m.

November 13, 2015 - 8:45am
posted by Howard B. Owens in byron-bergen, volleyball, sports.


Byron-Bergen put themselves in a position to advance in the state tournament Thursday night, up 24-17 in the fifth set, but let the lead slip away, dropping the game 27-25 to Honeoye. The first four sets were 25-19 Byron-Bergen, 17-25 Honeoye, 25-14 Byron-Bergen and 14-25 Honeoye.

The match, played in Le Roy, was a consolidation round for the Class D1 and Class D2 champions in Section V.

Genesee County's other Section V champion, for Class C, was Le Roy, and the Oatkan Knights lost its state qualifier last night at Pioneer in Arcade to Eden, 25-15, 25-11 and 25-15.












November 12, 2015 - 12:16pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, Batavia Downs, harness racing.

By Tim Bojarski, Batavia Downs Media Relations

Before returning last week, Little Santamonica hadn’t competed at Batavia Downs since early in the 2014 meet when she won back to back Open distaff races. It took her a week, but she regained her old form at the Genesee County oval on Wednesday night (Nov. 11) in winning the $10,000 Open mares pace.

Little Santamonica (Shawn McDonough) took a seat early and watched as three-straight winner, Memumsnotnice (Kevin Cummings), battle her way to the lead in a swift :27 quarter over a track rated “good." Then as she has done for the past three weeks, Memumsnotnice proceeded to lead the field by a loose two lengths en route to tripping the three-quarters in 1:25.3.

At the top of the last turn, Ding (Jack Flanigen) took her best shot, getting almost alongside the leader. But that advance gave Little Santamonica (who had been locked in fourth) just enough room to swing off the pylons and tip three deep. From there, McDonough needed little urging as the mare flew down the lane past the leader to win in 1:55.3.

It was the tenth win of the season for Little Santamonica ($7.40) and the winner’s share of the purse boosted her annual earnings to $79,735 for owner Jordan Hope, who also trains the mare.

Shawn McDonough scored the natural driving hat trick in races five through seven with Enzo Seelster ($13.80), Red Clay ($2.70) and Little Santamonica ($7.40). Kevin Cummings, Ron Beback Jr. and Jim McNeight also scored driving doubles.

Live racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Friday (Nov. 13) with post time at 6:15 p.m.

November 8, 2015 - 11:11pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in football, sports, batavia, Batavia HS.


The watchword for the Batavia Blue Devils this football season has been relentless. Coach Brennan Briggs has it stenciled on the back of his game day windbreaker. But there's another word that can apply to the 2015 edition of the team: dominating.

Over the past six games, no opponent has been able to finish a game within three touchdowns of the Blue Devils. Whether on the ground or through the air, the Batavia offense has scorched every defense they've faced and the defense has been, well, relentless.

The Blue Devils started the year ranked #1 in a coaches' poll, but Briggs wouldn't discuss on the record how much confidence he had in his team. After today's win over Livonia by a score of 52-20 for the team's second straight Class B Section V title, Briggs admitted he believed this team was that good all along.

"It's what I expected," Briggs said. "I downplayed it all year because there was a lot of hype. I don't like the high expectations. I just like to out there and get the job done. The kids have answered the bell every single week."

Briggs (top photo with the trophy) is in his fourth season as head coach and he becomes the first head coach in school history with back-to-back sectional titles in football to his credit.

A lot of credit for today's win goes to the ground game led by Dom Mogavero and Ray Leach, and senior QB Greg Mruczek's performance was certainly title worthy, but what it really comes down to, the players say, is the play of the offensive and defensive lines.

"They've been incredible all season for us," said Mruczek, who was 9-11 passing for 158 yards and two TDs. "They work hard every single day at practice. They work hard. The trenches are where football games are won and I think people overlook that sometimes."

Mogavero put together another stellar performance, rushing for 177 yards on 14 carries, scoring twice, and he gave all the credit to the linemen.

"Those guys work hard in the trenches," Mogavero said. "They played their tails off."

Danny Williams, who has been a team leader on defense all season and had eight tackles today, said it's an amazing feeling to be part of a winning team that works so hard together.

"We're such a family," Williams said. "I've never been on team that's got my back more than this team does. However I play, they've got my back. If I mess up, there's somebody right there to make the tackle. If I don't mess up, I make the tackle or they make the tackle. It's so easy to get down, but they just help me pick up. It's great."

Batavia came ready to play a tough, physical game, Briggs said.

"The nice thing is, they're (Livonia) a smashmouth team and we wanted to show that 'hey, we can beat people up in the trenches and we can do a great job,' " Briggs said. "Our kids just played relentless football all day long. They wanted it and nobody was going to take it from them."

Trevor Sherwood had three catches for 32 yards and a TD, Malachi Chenault had two grabs for 15 yards and Anthony Gallo scored on a 60-yard TD reception, which was the second play of the game and set the tone for the day.

"It was definitely huge," Mogavero said. "It definitely gave us a little kickstart."

That well-balanced game is part of what makes Batavia hard to beat, Briggs said.

"We have athletes all over the field and we also have tough guys in the trenches, and if we want to run the ball we can run it," Briggs said. "If we want to throw it, we can throw it. A lot of it comes down to what we're seeing, what we think we can do and what we can do to open other things up. Our line, our receivers and our running backs -- all of them together just make a great football team."

Next week, we get to find out if Batavia is indeed that good. They will play Cheektowaga for the Far West Regional Championship, a stepping-stone to a shot at a state championship game. The Blue Devils went into last season's regional with high expectations, only to bump into the reality of the Warriors, losing 35-18. The 2015 edition of the Warriors are 12-0 and have as many dominating wins as Batavia.

They players are eager to go against the Warriors, they said, with some thoughts of avenging last year's loss and some just out to prove they deserve the victory.

"We're going to want some revenge, but we've got play hard just like we played today and then we'll see what that score, what that outcome, is," Williams said.

Mruczek is excited at the prospect of matching up with Cheektowaga again.

That's definitely going to be a fun game," Mruczek said. "We're all looking forward to the opportunity to play them again for sure."

Asked if the team was looking for a chance for revenge, Mogavero wouldn't go there, not quite.

"We're definitely grateful for the opportunity to play them again this year," Mogavero said.

Briggs downplayed any talk of revenge, even after saying, "we feel like we owe it to them."

"They're a great football team," Briggs said. "We're going to have to come prepared and I know they're going to come prepared."

Game time for the regional is 1 p.m., Sunday, at Sahlen's Stadium.



Anthony Gallo made a 60-yard TD reception on the second play of the game, and after that, there was no more looking back for the Blue Devils.


Dom Mogavero scores on a two-point conversion after Gallo's TD reception.


Ray Leach on the carry.


Ray Leach headed for the end zone.








To purchase prints of game photos by Howard Owens, click here.

Slide show of photos by Howard Owens:

Slide show of photos by Jim Burns:

November 8, 2015 - 4:01pm
posted by James Burns in batavia, sports.

Batavia defeats Livonia 52 to 20.

Complete coverage to follow.




November 8, 2015 - 3:32pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, harness racing, Batavia Downs.

(Cobble Beach with driver Jack Flanigen, photo courtesy of Paul White.)

By Tim Bojarski, Batavia Downs Media Relations

Not one to be camera shy, Cobble Beach took the overland-route to capture another $9,000 Open pace feature at Batavia Downs on Saturday night (Nov. 7).

Sent off as the 3-2 favorite, Cobble Beach was taken to the back of the pack by driver Jack Flanigen at the start of the race as a contentious battle for the lead was staged between Button Fly (Shawn McDonough) and FB Seelster (Dave McNeight III). The latter took command before the group completed the first circuit in :57.2.

Cruising past five-eighths, If It Rains (Kevin Cummings) pulled first-over and brought Cobble Beach with him in tow. After the herd hit three-quarters in 1:26.4, If It Rains went by FB Seelster around the far turn and Cobble Beach passed If It Rains in the lane to take the lead and the race in 1:55.3.

It was the tenth win of the season for Cobble Beach ($5.10) and his best single-year earnings total continued to rise to $78,680 for owner Leonard Segall. James Clouser Jr. trains the 5-year-old Artiscape gelding.

The red-hot Jack Flanigen has been on a tear of late and Saturday was no exception. Flanigen bagged a quintuplet of victories and lit up the tote board in the process with Stirling Cadillac ($36.80), Cobble Beach ($5.10), Best Ears ($8.80), Peter Pumpkineater ($2.60) and Reachinforthestars ($11.40).

Kevin Cummings, Jim McNeight and Ron Beback Jr. also had driving doubles. Trainers JD Perrin and Maria Rice both sent two starters to the winner’s circle.

The $2,004 Pick-5 carry-over pool provided one lucky bettor a $4,700 payout for a .50-cent bet Saturday after he cashed in his 6-1-6-1-1 winning ticket.

Live racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Wednesday night with the first post set for 6:15.

November 7, 2015 - 8:16pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in hockey, sports, batavia, Falleti Ice Arena.


It was Try Hockey for Free Day at Falleti Ice Arena and Nora, almost 3, couldn't wait to play, said her father Brian Gildner. In fact, Nora is eager to play every time Brian takes her older brother to practice.





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