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January 5, 2017 - 8:05am
posted by Mike Pettinella in Bowling, sports.

The year 2016 was a year of numerous “highs” as well as the lowest of “lows” for Curtis Foss of Medina, unquestionably one of the best league and tournament bowlers in Western New York.

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During the 12 months that dissolved into history at midnight last Saturday, the strapping 29-year-old right-hander rolled seven 300 games and two 800 series, cashed in numerous tournaments and averaged a Genesee Region USBC association-best 242 and 241 in two leagues at Oak Orchard Bowl in Albion.

He placed third at the Greater Buffalo USBC’s Obenauer Masters last May, losing only to two of the Queen City’s best bowlers -- touring professionals Ryan Ciminelli and John Szczerbinski.

It was a shining moment for Foss, who has won four Genesee Region USBC Masters titles since 2008, but it also turned out to be the last time that his father, Bob Foss Jr., had a chance to watch Curtis bowl.

The next day, Bob, the 2012 GRUSBC Masters champion, suffered a stroke.  Less than five months later, he died at the age of 55.

Since then, Curtis has immersed himself into bowling more than ever – competing in leagues from Monday through Friday and in tournaments on the weekends -- as he struggles to deal with the loss of his dad and his best friend.

“I think about him every day. I’m just trying to get through each day,” Foss said. “He always was with me when we drove to tournaments.  It’s been hard to get my mindset (in the right place). Dad was always there.”

Curtis has been splitting time between Genesee County and Florida over the past three months, subbing in leagues in Albion, Medina, Oakfield, Batavia, Lockport and Buffalo when not staying with friends in the Sunshine State.

Foss said he will be bowling in the Scott Whittier Memorial three-person no-tap tournament in Albion this Saturday and the GRUSBC Scratch Memorial singles tournament at Medina Lanes on Sunday, before heading to Florida on Jan. 17 for another month-long stay.

His plans there include competing in a PBA South Regional tournament in Tavares on Feb. 4.

“I’m bowling as much as I can,” said Foss, acknowledging that his father would have wanted it that way and that it keeps him from dwelling on his dad’s passing. “I plan to be back here to bowl in the (GRUSBC) Masters on February 11th.”

He already has added to his list of 800 sets in 2017, having recorded 814 on Tuesday night (Jan. 3) at Allie Brandt Lanes in Lockport.

Foss now 25 perfect games and 15 800 series, and coupled with his tournament success, he may be in line to land an amateur staff position with Storm Bowling, since he uses only Storm and Roto-Grip (a division of Storm) bowling balls.

SCRATCH MEMORIAL SET FOR THIS WEEKEND IN MEDINA

Kevin Gray Jr. of Warsaw will be attempting to defend his title this weekend at the 63rd GRUSBC Scratch Memorial Tournament at Medina Lanes. Gray is signed up for the first of four qualifying squads at 10 a.m. on Saturday.

Other qualifying squads (four games) are scheduled for 4 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Sunday, with one in five bowlers advancing to the four-game semifinals.

First place, based on 80 entries, is $1,000.  For registration information, go to www.bowlgr.com to download an entry form.

(To see a list of other local tournaments this month, scroll down to the Dec. 22 Pin Points column on this page).

‘BEAT THE CHAMP’ RECAP: GRAVANDA WINS TWO MATCHES

Just as fellow Batavian Rich Wagner did before him, veteran bowler Fred Gravanda won two of his three matches on the “Beat The Champ” TV show, a regular weekend feature of WBBZ-TV (MeTV) out of Buffalo.

In the show from Mancuso Bowling Center in Batavia that aired on Dec. 24, Gravanda defeated John Danielwicz of Sanborn, 247-224, and Paul Tatone of St. Catharines, Ontario, 246-197, before falling to George Szczublewski of West Seneca, 258-215. The 66-year-old right-hander earned $250 for his effort.

On the final show from Mancuso’s that aired on Dec. 31, the duo of Frank Jarkiewicz of Byron and Laurie Morgante of Bergen captured a mixed doubles event by defeating the brother and sister team of Chris and Jennifer Bardol of Rochester in the title match.  Other competitors were the husband and wife duos of Rich and Jen Wagner, and Mark and Penny Brown.

HONOR SCORES UPDATE: HURLBURT 803; ALLIS, HANKS 300

Shawn Hurlburt of Freedom rolled 803 – his first USBC-certified 800 series -- on Dec. 22 in the Thursday Nite Intertown League at Letchworth Pines in Portageville. His games on lanes 3-4 were 245-279-279.

Hurlburt, a 40-year-old right-hander who works for Bliss Machine in Arcade, said he used a Track Hx05 ball, spotting around the second arrow, to consistently hit the pocket. After the opening 245, he left only a 10-pin in the sixth frame of game two and another 10-pin in the ninth frame of game three.

Hurlburt said he was calm – until the final two shots.

“I was definitely nervous on the 11th ball because I knew I needed that one,” he said. “But I threw it good. On the last ball, it went Brooklyn (crossing to the left of the 1-3 pocket), but they all went down.”

Hurlburt is averaging 213 in the league, which consist of five-person teams.  He said he is choosing a ring as his award from the United States Bowling Congress.

He has three children, including Karson, a ninth-grader who bowls for the Pioneer Central School team.

On Dec. 22, Robbie Hanks registered a 300 game on lanes 7-8 at Oak Orchard Bowl in Albion. Previously, the son of proprietor Randy Hanks notched an 800 series in a summer league on May 19.

And on Dec. 28, Scott Allis of Medina recorded a 300 game en route to a 740 series in the Wednesday Community League at Medina Lanes.  Allis has been red-hot this season, shooting an 811 on Sept. 14 and a 290 game on Oct. 27.

SCOPANO’S TEAM MOVES TO TOP OF YOUTH TRAVEL LEAGUE

A 15-5 victory over Batavia Strike Force propelled the Scopano’s I team into first place at the halfway point of the Genesee Region Youth Travel League.

Mason Cadieux’s 521 series sparked the Oakfield foursome to the win in Dec. 18 action at Mancuso Bowling Center.  Cadieux’s series with handicap was 761, which is high for the season.

The league resumes competition at 1 p.m. this Sunday at Rose Garden Bowl in Bergen.

Scopano’s I holds a 5.5 point lead over Strike Force, with Perry Bowling Center another 10 points back in the 12-team league.

Individually, Matt Hurlburt of Perry led the way with a 210 game and 575 series for the boys, while Emma Miller of Batavia X-Factor rolled a 190 game and 466 series to lead the girls.

(Mike Pettinella’s Pin Points column appears every other Thursday on The Batavian. To advertise on this page or to suggest story ideas, contact Mike at [email protected]).

January 4, 2017 - 1:00pm
posted by Session Placeholder in sports.
Event Date and Time: 
January 28, 2017 -
12:00pm to 9:00pm

Saturday, Jan. 28th will be all about basketball at Notre Dame High School. All four basketball teams will play against Le Roy, starting with the JV Girls team at noon, followed by the JV Boys team at 1:30 p.m.
Varsity teams tip off at 5 p.m. with the girls’ game followed by a ceremony honoring Coach Mike Rapone, Section V Basketball Hall of Famer and winningest coach in Section V Boys’ Basketball history. Then Coach Rapone and the Boys Varsity team take the court at 7 p.m.

January 4, 2017 - 12:23pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, news, Notre Dame, basketball.

Press release:

Saturday, Jan. 28th will be all about basketball at Notre Dame High School.

All four basketball teams will play against Le Roy, starting with the JV Girls team at noon, followed by the JV Boys team at 1:30 p.m. Varsity teams tip off at 5 p.m. with the girls' game followed by a ceremony around 6:30 p.m. honoring Coach Mike Rapone, Section V Basketball Hall of Famer and winningest coach in Section V Boys’ Basketball history. Then Coach Rapone and the Boys Varsity team take the court at 7 p.m.

A tour of the renovated school is scheduled for 4 p.m. and there will be a gathering after the Boys Varsity game in the cafeteria to congratulate Mike.

Coach Rapone was inducted into the Section V Basketball Hall of Fame in November, 2016. He has led Notre Dame Basketball to an incredible 30 Genesee Region League Basketball Championships, capturing nine Section V titles, six Far West Regional Championships and two New York State Championships. He has been honored as Section V Coach of the Year three times and Genesee Region Coach of the Year four times.

January 4, 2017 - 8:26am
posted by Howard B. Owens in basketball, sports, rotary tournament.

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Notre Dame's Hannah Bowen, Gillian Flint, Cal-Mum, Emily Weber, Attica, and Melissa Mountain, Batavia, are all ready for the annual Rotary Basketball Tournament, which tips off tonight at Genesee Community College at 6 p.m.

Notre Dame's Head Coach Tom McCulley, pictured below, said the annual tournament is a great showcase for girls' basketball.

"It's a great atmosphere," he said.

Marty Hein, Batavia's head coach, said he and his players always look forward to the tournament. 

"It’s just nice to do it right here at GCC," Hein said. "Big gym, big floor, big crowd. It’s just a good time."

Batavia enters the tournament at 2-7, Notre Dame is 4-2, Attica is 4-4 and Cal-Mum is 7-1.

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January 3, 2017 - 8:57am
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, sports.

A 300 game by Medina's Scott Allis and three big series by members of the Luce family at Rose Garden Bowl in Bergen highlighted last week's league bowling action around the Genesee Region.

Click on the Pin Points tab at the top of this page to see all the high scores, and watch for another Pin Points bowling column by Mike Pettinella on Thursday of this week.

December 31, 2016 - 4:53pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in sports, Cross Country, oakfield-alabama.

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Submitted by Peter Beuler from Oakfield-Alabama High School.

Junior Cole O'Donnell has been named the 2016 Genesee Region League Male Cross-Country Runner of the Year.          

Cole is a two-time Genesee - Livingston League Cross-Country All-Star and a one-time Genesee Region League Track and Field All-Star. He helped lead his team to their fourth consecutive division championship and the program's first sectional championship since 2008 this fall.

At Sectionals, he finished fifth and came in 28th place out of 122 runners at the State Meet.

December 30, 2016 - 2:41pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Lions Tournament, batavia, Batavia HS, sports, basketball, Notre Dame.

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In a game that was never really close, the Batavia Blue Devils won the annual Lions Tournament at GCC, beating the Notre Dame Fighting Irish, 60-29.

Tee Sean Ayala scored 19, despite a cold hand in the first half. He hit four three-pointers over the course of the game.

Antwan Odom, the tournament MVP, scored 14. He hit three threes. 

It was another big game for Notre Dame's Ryan Moffat, who hit three threes on his way to 15 points.

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December 29, 2016 - 2:07pm
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, sports, Genesee Community College, Mancuso Bowling.

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About 50 students from Batavia High School, Batavia Middle School, Byron-Bergen Central School, Albion Central School and Medina Central School took part in a recreational field trip this afternoon (Thursday) at Mancuso Bowling Center in Batavia. They participated in the Liberty Partnership Program, which is coordinated by Genesee Community College in conjunction with the NYS Department of Education.

Mary Ann Bowman, program director, said the outing provided an opportunity to "keep the students connected" while school is in recess. The students bowled two or three games and enjoyed pizza and pop during their time at the East Main Street facility.

The Liberty Partnership Program, in its 28th year, provides service to students in public and non-public schools grades five through 12 in an effort to maximize high school graduation and to encourage them to pursue higher education or post-secondary vocational training.

The Program promotes collaboration between colleges and universities, community based organizations, school districts, parents, volunteers, businesses and industry in providing comprehensive services for students to enter the workforce prepared with the necessary skills to be successful.

Liberty Partnership provides the following services: Academic/Personal Advisement, Homework Assistance, Career Awareness, Cultural and Enrichment Activities, Family Casework, Mentoring, Home Visits, Parental Involvement, Service Learning Projects/Civic Duty, Preparedness and College Tours and Summer Programming.

Photos -- From the top: Batavia High School students; Novalee Pocock, B-B fifth-grader; Batavia Middle School students with caseworker Kristen Calarco-Gomez; Jayden Doyle, B-B eighth-grader. 

December 28, 2016 - 12:53pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in sports, hockey, Notre Dame.

Press release from Notre Dame High School:

“After considering the information presented to the Section V Executive Committee at the administrative hearing held on Dec. 19, the Executive Committee has ruled that there has been no violation of the New York State Public High School Athletic Association (“NYSPHSAA”) sport standard #24 -- RECRUITMENT AND UNDUE INFLUENCE by Notre Dame of Batavia High School.”

Notre Dame is relieved for these three students, their families, and our hockey coach, Mr. Marc Staley.

It was unfortunate that our students, families, and staff, had to face these unfounded allegations of wrongdoing. Whether in the classroom, on the ice, or through community service, Notre Dame remains committed to instilling in our students the faith, knowledge, and confidence they will need to succeed in an ever-changing world. We are thankful for the thoughtful deliberation and time the Section V Executive Committee gave Notre Dame in making this decision.   

December 28, 2016 - 11:42am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Lion's Tournament, basketball, sports, batavia, Notre Dame.

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Batavia and Notre Dame will meeting in the Lions Tournament final on Thursday at Genesee Community College after the Fighting Irish knocked of Roy-Hart 47-41 and the Blue Devils topped Albion 60-43.

For the Irish, Nico Zambito scored 14, including a pair of threes, Ryan Moffat had 13 points, including three triples, and Anthony Gugino hit a pair of threes for six total points.

In the nightcap, Tee Sean Ayala dropped seven three-point shots for 21 points on the night and Antwan Odom added 16 points.  

For Albion, Lamar Chambers had 19 points.

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December 27, 2016 - 4:53pm
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, sports.

Several bowlers cracked the 700 mark at area bowling centers during the week of Dec. 19.

To see who was hot on the lanes, click on the Pin Points tab at the top of this page.

December 23, 2016 - 8:15pm
posted by Rick Franclemont in sports, alexander, basketball, byron-bergen.

Alexander Boys Varsity took down Byron-Bergen 53 to 40.


Standout sophmore Chris McClinic led Alexander with 21 points, three rebounds, three assists, and four steals.

Adding points for Alexander with strong games:

Matt Genaway -- 12 points, five rebounds
Erik Scharlau -- nine points, 10 rebounds, six blocks
Dustin Schmieder -- nine points

Leading Byron Bergen:
Brandon Burke -- 16 points, seven rebounds
Colin Noeth -- 11 points, eight rebounds


Alexander Coach Josh Bender said "I thought tonight my guys played great disciplined defense. These guys stepped up to the challenge and it was a great team win for us. We are starting to hit our stride and will look to continue to keep improving."

Current records:

Alexander 3-3 overall
Byron-Bergen 3-3 overall

More pictures from this game and other Alexander Varsity games can be found http://francletography.photoshelter.com/gallery-collection/Basketball/C0000f.aPItX_A7o

December 23, 2016 - 6:14pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in sports, Batavia HS, batavia, football, soccer.

Batavia running back and linebacker Ray Leach is the only sophomore to be named to the All Greater Rochester First Team in football.

Leach finished the season with 1,888 yards rushing. He scored 28 touchdowns. He made 62 tackles as a linebacker.

Leach isn't alone on the first team. Also named from Batavia Anthony Ray, a junior, who was Section V Class B Defensive Player of the Year and has been on all three of Batavia's Section V championship teams. He made 82 tackles and nine sacks.

Named to the second team was quarterback Jerry Reinhart.

The other top honor for a Genesee County athlete went to Maggie Cecere, Batavia, who was named to second team in girls soccer.

December 22, 2016 - 9:59am
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, sports, Batavia Downs.

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

On Saturday (Dec. 17), the curtain came down on the 70th anniversary season of racing at Batavia Downs. America’s oldest lighted harness track’s meet that began on Monday (July 25), ran two days longer than originally scheduled after racing was extended for an extra weekend.

As usual, the stake season was highlighted by eight divisions of the New York Sire Stake series, which featured the best state bred horses and Grand Circuit horsemen. The series featured visits from the likes of John Campbell and Andy Miller and produced two new track records.

On Saturday (Sept. 3) Pointomygranson (Marcus Miller) toured the facility in 1:53.2 and set a new standard for 2-year-old pacing geldings and on Wednesday (Sept. 14) Zack’s Zoomer (Marcus Miller) trotted a mile in 1:58.1 and established a new track record for 2-year-old trotting colts.

Racing under saddle (RUS) made its debut at the Downs on Wednesday (Sept. 7) and that produced a new track record as well. Admirable Hanover who was ridden by Vanessa Karlewicz won the $4,000 event in 2:03.4.

On Saturday (Oct. 9), Batavia Downs signature stake, the $50,000 Robert J. Kane Memorial trot saw the $7 million man, Foiled Again (Kevin Cummings) come from well off the pace to win by a length in 1:52.2 on the strength of an exciting stretch drive at 9-1. That win marked the 90th trip to the winner’s circle for the richest standardbred in the history of the sport.

For the first time ever, Batavia Downs offered a new claiming series that ran throughout the whole meet. Claimers of both gaits accrued points month to month in order to make finals worth between $15,000 and $20,000. On Saturday (Nov. 13) trotters Love U Forever and Chrome Finish, and pacers Outoftexas, War Front, Vals Jett, Big Unit and Can U Be Fun won the finals in their respective divisions.

In September, Batavia Downs hosted a new owners' seminar in conjunction with the United States Trotting Association and the Harness Horse Breeders of New York State. Twenty-six people took part in the workshop that took them from the classroom to the paddock and provided them with everything they needed to learn in order to make informed decisions about standardbred ownership.

On the track, one of the best driving colonies in some time put on quite a show. Perennial local favorite Jim Morrill Jr. put in another stellar effort that was highlighted by a seven-win night, two six-win nights and four five-win nights.

But it was 22-year-old Drew Monti who eventually won the dash driving title with 116 wins for the meet. Monti also registered a seven-win night and two five-win efforts as well. It was the first ever driving title won by Monti.

Jim Morrill Jr. did set a new single meet earnings record at the Downs after he banked $849,024 in purses from July to December.

JD Perrin “three-peated” his training crown, finishing first again this year with 47 wins. Perrin’s meet started off strong before many of his horses fell ill. But after a trying middle stretch, the stable got back on track over the last month and Perrin was able to defend his title again.

The winningest post position was post one with 231 wins followed by post two (151), post four (138) and post three (126). Post one also made the board 63 percent of the time.

Also, the favorites won the race 46 percent of the time during the course of the meet.

“We had a very exciting year at Batavia Downs this year. The product on the track was very competitive and having drivers like Jim Morrill Jr., Drew Monti, Shawn Gray and newcomer Larry Stalbaum joining the fray, the competition was fierce every night” said Todd Haight, GM/Director of Live Racing. “Despite our handle being down 5 percent for the meet, we paid out a record $5.9 million in purse money and we look forward to doing that again next year.”

Pending approval from the New York State Gaming Commission, the 2017 live racing meet at Batavia Downs will start on Wednesday (July 26).  

The management and horsemen of Batavia Downs would like to wish everyone in the industry a very happy Holiday Season and the best of luck in the upcoming new year. 

December 22, 2016 - 7:52am
posted by Mike Pettinella in Bowling, sports.

WALTER RAY WILLIAMS JR., the all-time leader in victories on the Professional Bowlers Association national tour, reached another milestone last week at the PBA/PBA50/PBA60 Decker Appraisal Services Baker Trios tournament in Harrisonburg, Va.

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“Deadeye,” as he is known by virtue of his bowling and horseshoe pitching skill, combined with Dennis Lane and Dick Allen to win the trios event for his 100th overall PBA title.

Some of you may remember that Walter Ray put on a bowling and horseshoe pitching exhibition at Mancuso Bowling Center (then Mancuso Lanes) about 30 years ago at the invitation of Mike DiMartino. It was quite a show as Williams, a nine-time World Champion horseshoe pitcher, and DiMartino, at least a nine-time NYS horseshoe pitching champion, tossed ringer after ringer on portable pits set up in the parking lot outside the bowling center's east entrance.

Williams' latest bowling title is his 10th as a PBA50 Regional competitor. He also has 47 wins on the regular PBA Tour, 32 PBA Regional crowns and 11 PBA50 Tour titles.

Fellow Hall of Famer Pete Weber has 99 combined Tour titles.

In other PBA news:

-- Mike Wolfe of New Albany, Ind., won his first PBA Tour title in eight years, defeating Darren Tang of San Francisco, 279-143, in the finals of the Cheetah Championship that was televised on Sunday on ESPN.

The win added $20,000 to Wolfe’s bank account, while Tang, a 21-year-old rookie, pocketed $10,000.

-- The finals of three more “animal pattern” tournaments from last month’s World Series of Bowling will be televised this weekend on ESPN – the Chameleon Championship at 1 p.m. Saturday, and a Christmas Day doubleheader on Sunday featuring the Scorpion Championship at 2:30 p.m. and the Shark Championship at 3:30 p.m.

-- Last month, I cast my vote for three people on the ballot for the PBA Hall of Fame and I am glad to announce that all three – Bryan Goebel, Steve Hoskins and Mike Scroggins – have been elected for superior performance.

All three were forces on the PBA Tour in the 1980s, ‘90s and 2000s. Goebel and Hoskins are 10-time champions with major tournament titles, and Scroggins has eight titles including the USBC Masters and U.S. Open.

Induction ceremonies will take place on Feb. 13 at Grand Casino Hotel & Resort in Shawnee, Okla.

GRAVANDA’S ‘BEAT THE CHAMP’ APPEARANCE IS SATURDAY

Fans of the “Beat The Champ” bowling show on WBBZ-TV (MeTV) were able to watch Batavian Rich Wagner win two matches before losing his third match on Dec. 10 – earning $250 for his efforts – and now will have the opportunity to see another Batavia resident this Saturday at 4 p.m. (with a repeat showing at 11 p.m. Sunday).

Fred Gravanda will take on current champion John Danielwicz of Sanborn in the first match. The winner will go up against Paul Tatone of St. Catharines, Ontario, and the winner of that match will take on Szczublewski of West Seneca.

The fourth and final show from Mancuso Bowling Center (taping took place on Nov. 30) will be televised on Dec. 31. It will be a mixed doubles event featuring four teams of Genesee Region bowlers – Rich and Jen Wagner, Chris and Jenn Bardol, Frank Jarkiewicz and Laurie Morgante, and Mark and Penny Brown.

GRAY SR. CASHES AT 60-AND-OVER EVENT IN ROCHESTER

Three days after undergoing surgery on his left thumb, Kevin Gray Sr. of Honeoye Falls was back on the lanes and found a measure of success at the 60-and-Over Tournament Bowlers Club event at Bowl-A-Roll Lanes in Rochester.

The 63-year-old right-hander, wearing a cast on his left hand, placed fourth out of 46 bowlers, just missing the three-bowler finals by a few pins.  Still, he won $125.

Gravanda and Joe Trigilio of Attica also cashed in the tournament by advancing to the top 12.

BATAVIA YOUTH BOWLERS EARN SCHOLARSHIPS

The team of Tyler Roth, Lily Martin, Jonah Martin and Brock Bigsby captured top honors at the third annual Genesee Region USBC Youth Baker Team tournament at Scopano’s Lanes on Dec. 10.

The Batavia team won $400 in the form of $100 scholarships each for their efforts. Another Batavia squad of Corinne Saluste, Tara Clattenburg, Zach Wester and Skylar Laesser finished in second place, splitting $120 in scholarship money.

Another GRUSBC youth tournament – Adult-Junior Doubles -- is scheduled for Jan. 14-15 at Medina Lanes. For an entry form, go to www.bowlgr.com.

FOUR LOCAL TOURNAMENTS SET FOR JANUARY

Medina Lanes will host two Genesee Region USBC tournaments in January, a month that also will feature a three-person no-tap event at Oak Orchard Lanes in Albion and the annual scratch singles tourney at Mount Morris Lanes.

-- Jan. 7, Scott Whittier Memorial 3-Person Handicap No-Tap, Oak Orchard Bowl. This is the fifth year of the tournament that benefits the Scott Whittier Scholarship Foundation. First prize is $600 and the entry fee is $60 per team. Squad times are 1, 3 5:30 and 7:30 p.m. To enter, call 585-589-6900.

-- Jan. 7-8, GRUSBC Scratch Memorial, Medina Lanes.  A $1,000 first prize (based on 80 entries) awaits the winner of the scratch singles event, which lists squad times at 1 and 4 p.m. on Jan. 7 and 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. on Jan. 8.  Qualifying will be bowled on a 47-foot oil pattern and the finals will be contested on a 38-foot oil pattern. Entry fee is $55.  To enter, call 585-861-0404 or send an email to [email protected].

-- Jan. 13-15, Mount Morris Pepsi Open, Mount Morris Lanes.  First place is a guaranteed $1,500 and one out of five will cash. Qualifying (four games) dates and times are 7 and 9:30 p.m. on Jan. 13, 11:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. on Jan. 14, and 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. on Jan. 15. Entry fee is $70 and the re-entry fee is $50. To enter, call 585-658-2540.

-- Jan. 14-15, GRUSBC Adult-Junior Doubles, Medina Lanes.  Squad times are noon, 3 and 6 p.m. on Jan. 14 and noon and 3 p.m. on Jan. 15 for the handicap tournament, which lists two divisions – 12 & under and 13 & over.  Entry fee is $30 per team. Youth winnings will be in the form of scholarships; adult winnings will in the form of checks mailed from the GRUSBC office. To enter, call 585-284-2637 or send an email to [email protected].

MERRY CHRISTMAS AND HAPPY NEW YEAR!

As 2016 draws to a close, I’d like to express my sincere appreciation to Howard Owens, publisher of The Batavian, and Lisa Ace, his graphic artist, as well as all the businesses who advertise on this page for supporting the Pin Points column that reaches out to bowlers and bowling fans in the GLOW region.

Bowling continues to be a popular organized sport in our area (as well as the nation and world) and I count it a privilege to be able to share bowlers’ accomplishments and information about the sport on The Batavian, the area’s No. 1 source of online news.

We’ll be back with the first column of 2017 on Jan. 5.  Until then, have a Blessed and Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year!

(Mike Pettinella’s Pin Points column appears every other Thursday on The Batavian. To advertise on this page or to suggest story ideas, contact Mike at [email protected]).

December 22, 2016 - 7:50am
posted by Mike Pettinella in Bowling, sports.

Bob Hodgson of Medina notched his second 800 series of the season while Scott Noble of Perry recorded his first United States Bowling Congress-certified 300 game in recent Genesee Region USBC league competition.

Hodgson, 69, a retired sixth-grade teacher for Medina Central School, rolled 279-279-258—816 in the Wednesday Community League at Medina Lanes on Dec. 7.

On Nov. 9, he posted 810, and this past January, he had two 300 games in the Thursday Firefighters League at Medina Lanes.

When it was mentioned to him that he’s on quite a roll, Hodgson said, “It’s been hot and cold. Some nights I’ve had it and some not so good.”

The right-hander said his new ball, the Storm Optimus, has worked very well on the center’s new synthetic lanes.

“I have to play a little wider because the lanes seem to hold the oil better,” Hodgson said. “They don’t dry out as quickly and the oil is longer. It’s easier to pick the 10-pins.”

That’s all Hodgson left in the first two games on lanes 17-18 – rolling nine straight strikes in each before leaving a 10-pin.  He struck on the final ball of each game for back-to-back 279s, and then added nine more strikes in the third game for 258.

He bowls on a team with his wife, Merry; daughter, Tricia, and son, Tim.

“It’s great bowling with the family, especially for Tim, who has Down syndrome,” Hodgson said. “He loves to bowl and he has a 145 average.”

Hodgson holds a 213 average in the Wednesday league. He now has seven 800 series and 10 perfect games.

At Perry Bowling Center, Noble shook off the effects of a mishap at work earlier in the day to roll 300-247-193—734 on lanes 7-8 on Dec. 8 in the Thursday Night League.

“I tire blew up on me and it kind of took the wind out of me,” said Noble, a 32-year-old righty who works for Sedam Tires in Perry. “I was pretty sore later on.”

Despite the accident and the fact that he didn’t get lined up in practice, Noble started with the first 18 strikes before breaking off in the middle of the second game.

“During practice, I couldn’t find anything … the ball wasn’t moving,” he said. “So I decided to throw a totally different shot than I normally throw.”

Noble said he moved back a foot on the approach and moved about eight boards to the right.

“I ended up shooting down the 10-board (second arrow),” said Noble, who used a year-old Hammer Dark Legend. “I usually don’t play that straight.”

He said he will be ordering a ring from USBC, which awards certified bowlers for their first 300 game or 800 series. 

In action at Mancuso Bowling Center, left-hander Rich Wagner (coming off a successful appearance on the "Beat The Champ" TV show) gave himself an early Christmas and birthday present – he will be 34 on Christmas Day – with a 300 game en route to a 781 series in the North Pole Restaurant/Family Affair Boat Repair Thursday night league on Dec. 8.

Jim Dommer of Batavia just missed perfection as he shot 299 in the first game of that night.

Honorable mention goes to Michele Larson of Batavia, who rolled 246-236-215—697 on Dec. 14 in the Wednesday Night Ladies League at Mancuso’s, and to Bobby Donovan, who recorded a 735 series (his first 700) in the Thursday Owls League at Rose Garden Bowl in Bergen on Dec. 8.

December 17, 2016 - 11:22pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in mma, sports, Mixed Martial Arts, batavia, news, Ground Force Fights.

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It's only been a few months since it became legal to hold mixed martial arts events in New York, and one of the first such events in the state drew a sellout crowd in Batavia tonight at the Quality Inn and Suites.

Le Roy resident Richard Mitchell, owner of Ground Force Fights and himself a former professional MMA fighter, was the event's promoter.

First three photos, Mark Murry vs. John Gearhart. Murray won at 1:30 in the first round due to strikes.

In the dual main events, Morgan Cavanaugh vs, Eddie Ortiz Junior. Ortiz won at 1:55 in round 1.  Tom Shelby beat Nick Phelps at 1:55 in round 1.

Previously: Local promoter bringing one of the state's first MMA events to Batavia

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Two photos above, Sean Keough vs. Yuri Panferov. Panferov won at 1:15 in round 1 after a verbal tapout by Keough. 

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December 17, 2016 - 10:22pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, Batavia Downs, harness racing.

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs:

Shady City stuck to script with a strong come from behind effort to win the $9,500 Open pacing feature at Batavia Downs on Saturday night (Dec. 17).

Foreign Officer (Shawn Gray) shot out for the lead quickly and gained that position without any opposition. Once there, he led the group in single file to the half in :57.2. When the race advanced past five-eighths, Shady City (Larry Stalbaum) pulled first up and brought Warrawee Qually (Kevin Cummings) with him as they proceeded to advance toward the leader.

Those positions remained unchanged around the far turn, but at the head of the stretch, Shady City put on another of his furious closing brushes. He went by the fading Foreign Officer, as well as Western Expression (Mike Whelan) who had tripped-out and snuck up the rail, to win by a head in 1:54.4.

It was the sixth win of the year for Shady City ($4.10) who has now earned $68,332 for 2016. The 6-year-old gelded son of Metropolitan is owned by his driver, Larry Stalbaum and is trained by Kim Asher.

In the $9,000 co-featured Open II pace, Rock The Dream (Ray Fisher Jr.) came from last at the half to go three-wide at three-quarters and win a narrow decision over Private Equity (Todd Cummings) in 1:55.1. It was the fourth win in five starts for Rock The Dream ($7.90) who is owned by Tessa Roland and trained by the Downs leading trainer, JD Perrin.

Ray Fisher Jr. had a driving grand slam while Larry Stalbaum got the hat trick and Shawn Gray doubled up. Trainer Kim Asher also had three wins on the night followed by JD Perrin with two.

As the 2016 meet came to a close, the leading driver and trainer were welcomed in front of the grandstand and presented with their winning hardware. Drew Monti was the leading dash driver with 116 wins and trainer JD Perrin was the top conditioner for the third straight year at the Batavia summer/fall meet with 47 wins.

December 17, 2016 - 7:35pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in basketball, sports, Batavia HS, news, batavia.

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The Evens beat the Odds 98-92 today in the annual Batavia High School boys basketball alumni game. 

Batavia's head coach, Buddy Brasky, said the oldest player on the floor today was from the Class of 1998 and there were players who graduated as recently as last year participating.

Brasky said it's just a good time for the players and coaches and fans. Afterward, they all go out for beer and pizza.  

The game was played at John Kennedy School.

The after-game photo at the bottom was posted by Brasky on Twitter.

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December 17, 2016 - 11:22am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia HS, batavia, basketball, sports, news.

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Antwan Odom had 17 points and TeeSean Ayala scored 13, including three three-pointers, to help the Batavia Blue Devils beat Honeoye Falls-Lima 55- 39 in Batavia's home opener.

Batavia is now 2-1 on the season.

Mason McFollins added eight points.

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