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Mountain View and Blue Ridge did not need long to start producing in boys' basketball.
The Eagles and Raiders each won games on the first two days of the season to claim tournament championships.
Mountain View won its own William McLaughlin Tournament by defeating Mid Valley, 52-47, and Bishop O'Hara, 56-47.
"We're excited," Mountain View coach Patrick Heaton said. "The guys have a lot of goals for this year. The first goal was to win our own tournament. We've had the tip-off tournament for seven or eight years, but we had never won it."
The Eagles struggled to get through the first win in overtime, then used a strong finish to put away Bishop O'Hara in regulation.
After Mid Valley recovered from a six-point deficit to send Friday's game into overtime, Chris White helped Mountain View regain control.
White scored seven of his team-high 13 points in overtime as the Eagles used a 10-5 advantage to pull out the win.
Tim Bennett added 12 points for Mountain View.
Bennett led the championship game victory with 13 points and 10 rebounds to earn tournament Most Valuable Player honors.
Nick Stoud turned a steal into a buzzer-beating lay-up to give Mountain View a 31-29 lead after three quarters.
Bennett then scored 10 points, with the help of an 8-for-9 effort from the foul line, to lead the Eagles to 25 points in the final eight minutes.
Mountain View won the tournament despite point guard Robbie Johnson, one of the team's top returnees, playing just two minutes of the opener. Johnson was unable to go any further because of a hip injury that has bothered him throughout the pre-season.
"We have outstanding team depth," Heaton said. "Robbie Johnson was hurt both games, but (Saturday) night all 10 guys that we played scored."
Blue Ridge went on the road to win the Sayre Tip-off Tournament by beating Sayre, 47-39, and Oswayo Valley, 62-52.
Azim Griffin scored 22 points in each game to lead Blue Ridge. Nate Pease added 17 in the championship game.
Montrose also got off to an impressive start by defeating Honesdale, 53-48.
The Meteors outscored the Hornets, 16-4, in the second quarter to take a 24-15 half-time lead. Kyle Adriance led the Meteors with 16 points while Tom Burgh added 11.
Susquehanna won its opener, but lost in the final of the Towanda Tip-off Tournament.
The Sabers beat Northeast Bradford, 67-36, then fell to Athens, 63-47.
Elk Lake lost to Carbondale, 42-38, in the Red Wallace Memorial Scholarship Game.
In girls' basketball, Blue Ridge, Elk Lake and Mountain View each recovered from opening losses to win consolation games and take third place in tournaments.
Blue Ridge defeated Susquehanna, 53-35, in the Tony Aliano Memorial Tournament.
Jocelyn Dearborn, who was selected to the all-tournament team, had 13 points to lead Blue Ridge. Kate Donovan added 10.
Beth Kubus, Susquehanna's all-tournament selection, had 12 points. Bridgette Stone added 10.
Susquehanna lost the opener, 69-29, to eventual champion Carbondale, which got 25 points from all-tournament selection Joya Whittington. The Lady Sabers were led by 10 points from Stone and nine from Kubus.
Lakeland defeated Blue Ridge, 54-27, in the other semifinal. The Lady Chiefs were led by their all-tournament pick, Kelly Tratthen.
Carbondale's Natalie Winters was named Most Valuable Player of the tournament, which was played at Blue Ridge this year.
Elk Lake lost to Northeast Bradford, 50-27, in the Tunkhannock Kiwanis Tournament opener, but came back to defeat Wilkes-Barre GAR, 48-32.
Heather Shadduck scored 13 points while Amanda Shingler and Brooke Shingler added 10 each in the win.
Whitney Williams made the all-tournament team for Mountain View at the Times Leader Lake-Lehman Tournament.
Mountain View lost to eventual champion Wyoming Seminary, 66-37, despite 23 points by Williams, then came back to rout West Side Tech, 67-5.
Williams hit six 3-pointers in the first game. She matched Lee Faramelli for the team lead of 14 points in the consolation game.
The Lady Eagles did not give up a point in the second half against West Side Tech.
WEEK IN REVIEW
The Philadelphia Phillies announced that they have hired former American League Manager of the Year Gene Lamont to be the next manager of the Class AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Red Barons.
"We are thrilled to get a guy with Gene's experience and qualifications to handle our triple-A managing role," Mike Arbuckle, assistant general manager in charge of scouting and player development, said in a Phillies press release. "He is a proven manager and will bring solid baseball experience and knowledge to our organization."
Lamont, 57, has 16 years of experience as a professional manager with a record of 1140-1129. He served as third base coach of the Houston Astros from 2002 through the first half of the 2004 season.
Lamont led the Chicago White Sox to consecutive division titles in 1993 and 1994 in the middle of a four-year stint with the team and also was manager of the Pittsburgh Pirates from 1997 to 2000.
The announcement completes the changes made necessary when the Phillies named Marc Bombard as their first base coach.
Bombard is one of two former Red Barons managers added to the Phillies staff this off-season.
Bill Dancy, the team's first manager, is the new Phillies third base coach. Rich Dubee, the Red Barons pitching coach in 2004, will take over that role with the Phillies.
"I have had the opportunity over the last two years to spend a lot of time with these guys," new Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said. "I've traveled with them, coached with them and learned a lot of baseball from them."
Bombard was the winningest active minor-league manager with 1556 victories before leaving to join the Phillies. He took the Red Barons to the playoffs four times in eight seasons.
"Bomby has had great success as a manager in our system," Manuel said. "He is highly respected in the baseball community and has an uncanny ability to communicate and get the best out of his players."
Dancy was drafted by the Phillies in 1973 and has been with the organization for all but two years since.
In professional hockey, Jason Spezza of the Binghamton Senators was the top scorer in the American Hockey League during November with six goals and 15 assists in 13 games.
Both the Senators and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins spent the month locked in a series of tight games.
Binghamton played in six overtime games and three shoot-outs while having 12 of its 13 November games decided by a goal. The Senators went 6-3-2-2 for the month with the third and fourth column in the standings representing overtime losses and shoot-out losses.
Wilkes-Barre/Scranton played in three overtime games and two shoot-outs while having six of its 10 games decided by a goal. The Penguins went 13 straight games without losing in regulation, therefore gaining at least one point in the standings each time, before their streak ended November 27. The Penguins went 6-1-2-1 in November.
In high school football, the last District 2 team was eliminated when Berwick fell to Manheim Central, 16-13, in a Class AAA state semifinal.
Tony Rezykowski, a 6-foot sophomore guard from Elk Lake, has started every game at College Misericordia, which is off to a 2-3 start.
Rezykowski was tied for the second-leading scorer on the team with 12 points in the team's first win, an 82-63 victory over Briarcliffe in the consolation game of the Laurel Line Tournament. He went 5-for-11 and made three steals in the game.
Through five games, Rezykowski is 7-for-28 from the floor, 0-for-7 on 3-pointers and 11-for-15 at the foul line for an average of five points per game. He also has 15 rebounds, eight assists and five steals.
THE WEEK AHEAD
The Elk Lake boys' basketball team will play in the first game of the Lackawanna League season.
Elk Lake is at Mid Valley in a crossover game Wednesday, two days before the rest of the boys' teams open their seasons and one day before the girls' season opens with a full schedule.
The girls' crossover schedule on Thursday features Riverside at Blue Ridge, Carbondale at Forest City, Mid Valley at Elk Lake, Bishop O'Hara at Mountain View, Bishop Hannan at Montrose and Old Forge at Susquehanna.
Boys' crossover openers on Friday are: Blue Ridge at Riverside, Forest City at Carbondale, Mountain View at Bishop O'Hara, Montrose at Bishop Hannan and Susquehanna at Old Forge.
Division III girls' play begins Saturday with Forest City at Blue Ridge, Susquehanna at Mountain View and Elk Lake at Montrose.
The Division III boys' openers are scheduled for December 14 with Blue Ridge at Forest City, Mountain View at Susquehanna and Elk Lake at Montrose.
Tom Robinson writes a weekly local sports column for the Susquehanna County Transcript. He can be reached on-line at RobbyTR@aol.com.
Dale Jr. Looking Forward To New Team
New York City –There was lots of glitz and glimmer at this year’s Nextel Cup Awards Banquet, Friday at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel, including a check for $5.36-million to champion Kurt Busch.
Kurt Busch, Donald Trump and Dale Earnhardt, Jr.
However, it was Dale Earnhardt Jr. that garnered most of the news headlines. First, he was named the most popular driver in NASCAR’s Nextel Cup series for the second consecutive year.
But the realignment of his team for the 2005 season was probably the biggest news event.
In 2003, Earnhardt had said, he couldn’t ever imagine not having his uncle Tony Eury Sr. as his crew chief.
Eury Sr., who had been crew chief on the No. 8 Chevrolet his entire Cup career, has been promoted to Dale Earnhardt Inc.’s, director of competition. Steve Hmiel, previous director of competition, will move to technical director.
During his role as crew chief, Eury Sr. led Earnhardt Jr. to two NASCAR Busch Series championships and 15 Cup victories, including the 2004 Daytona 500 and 2000 all-star race. He also led Dale Earnhardt to 21 Busch victories.
Pete Rondeau has been moved to the crew chief position of the No. 8 Chevrolet. He most recently served as crew chief for DEI teammate Michael Waltrip this season.
Rondeau led Earnhardt Jr. to a Busch Series win at Bristol, Tenn., this year and Ron Fellows to a second-place finish at Watkins Glen, NY.
Tony Eury Jr., formerly Earnhardt Jr.'s car chief, has been moved over as crew chief on Michael Waltrip’s No. 15.
Earnhardt said he believes he and his cousin, Tony Eury Jr., can both enjoy more success in NASCAR now that they're no longer on the same team.
"I'd always heard it's hard to work with family, but I never experienced that. It had always been great," Earnhardt said. "(Tony Jr.) knows exactly what I am thinking at the track at all times. That was a little bit of our downfall at times, we probably expected too much out of each other."
Earnhardt Jr., who finished fifth in the final Nextel Cup standings this year, will have Pete Rondeau as his crew chief next year. Rondeau, along with the core members of his crew, will move over to the No. 8 from Michael Waltrip's No. 15 Chevrolet. Eury Jr. and members of Earnhardt Jr.’s crew from this year will move to Waltrip's team.
Earnhardt Jr. said he had input into the decision to make the changes. "I wasn't in there smashing all the buttons," he said, "but I had input. ...I wanted to make sure everything was fair."
Earnhardt admitted, "it was miserable a lot of the time between the good times" as he worked with the Eurys. The driver's relationship with Eury Jr. was particularly volatile.
"He and I both agreed that each of us needs to work with different people to learn the maturity and the respect side of it that we didn't have for each other," Earnhardt Jr. said. "I think it will be better for both of us. There will be a higher level of respect both ways, coming or going."
Earnhardt Jr. said he knows that Rondeau will be under scrutiny.
"He'll be OK," Earnhardt Jr. said. "He's a pretty quiet guy. It's going to be a big, big relief to work with somebody who's calm and relaxed and not putting any pressure on me. If I tell him I think there might be a problem with the car, he's going to look all over it to find it. That's kind of what I have missed."
Many fans and members of DEI were disappointed that Earnhardt did not finish higher than fifth this season, and DEI believes the moves will help both teams perform better in 2005.
"We all sat down and talked because we want all of our teams to produce even better results," said Richie Gilmore, DEI's vice president of motorsports. "Everyone is excited about this and we're already getting ready for Daytona testing. We think the results will show up immediately."
Each of the top-10 drivers, plus the 11th place driver, Jamie McMurray all received checks for over $1-million at the banquet.
Teams Are Ready To Begin Testing, Concord, NC – Although the season is over and there is no racing on television that does not mean the teams are taking it easy. Only two weeks after the season finale in Homestead, Roush’s two Craftsman Truck Series teams are already preparing for their first 2005 test in a few weeks.
New drivers Ricky Craven and Todd Kluever will get their first opportunity to get behind the wheel of the Ford F-150s at Talladega Superspeedway on December 13-14. The teams will be concentrating on aerodynamics and chassis set-up for the 2005 trucks.
“I’m really looking forward to our first test,” Craven said. “I’ve only competed in one truck race so far in my career (at New Hampshire) so I’m anxious to get going and start working with everybody. NASCAR has a new rear-spring package for 2005 so we’ve got to spend some time deciding how to set-up the truck for Daytona. We’ll be testing there in January, which will be helpful as well.”
Kluever, Roush’s rookie driver, will have a busy month ahead of him. Not only will he be testing at Talladega, but moving to North Carolina from his home state of Wisconsin.
“I’m going to fly to Charlotte next week and spend some time at the shop before we go to Talladega,” Kluever said. “I plan to go back home a few days after the test and move down for good after Christmas. It’s still all a little overwhelming because everything has happened so fast. It was only five weeks ago that I showed up at North Wilkesboro and sat in a truck for the first time. Now in less than two weeks I’ll be going to Talladega to test our Daytona truck. It’s still pretty hard to believe.”
Roush Racing is a subsidiary of Livonia, Mich., based Roush Industries that operates nine motorsports teams; five in NASCAR Nextel Cup with drivers Mark Martin, Matt Kenseth, Kurt Busch, Greg Biffle and Carl Edwards, two in the Busch Series with Martin, Kenseth and Edwards, and two in the Craftsman Truck Series with drivers Ricky Craven and Todd Kluever
Racing Trivia Question: What are Robby Gordon’s plans for 2005?
Last Week’s Question: Who would have won this year’s Nextel Cup championship under the old points system? Answer. Jeff Gordon would have won by 47 points.
Gerald Hodges/the Racing Reporter is a syndicated NASCAR columnist. You can read additional racing stories by Hodges at www.race500.com.
Jessica Squier remained a consistent, dominant force in Lackawanna League meets throughout the season, but the Elk Lake senior came up a bit short running in larger fields during invitationals and the District 2 championship.
For the last event of her high school cross country career, Squier was intent on reversing that trend.
Squier settled down, overcame self-imposed pressure and put together her best race to finish second in the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association Class AA championship.
"I had some difficulties prior to that with stress," said Squier, who was undefeated in league competition. "I was a little bit anxious going into the state race. I was worried. I prayed a lot.
"God helped me calm down and just do the very best that I could."
That meant leading for part of the final mile of the race before finishing as the second-best girls' high school distance runner in Pennsylvania. Squier's second-place time of 18:57 in Class AA was better than the winning time in the Class AAA race and helped her earn the latest Susquehanna County Transcript Athlete of the Month award.
"I knew within the first 200 meters that I was going to be fine," Squier said.
After a third straight finish among the top 10 Class AA runners in the state, Squier was pleased.
"It went really well," she said. "I felt really comfortable, I bettered my time by 31 seconds from last year and I moved up."
Squier was 10th in the state as a sophomore in 19:42 and third in the state last season in 19:28.
After returning from a recruiting visit Saturday, Squier said she has cut her choices to continue her track and cross country careers to two colleges.
"I have my choices narrowed down to Liberty University, a Division I school in Virginia, and Cedarville, a Division II school in Ohio," she said. "They are both Christian colleges with good running programs."
Jessica, the daughter of Will and Laura Squier of Dimock Twp., is home schooled, but is eligible for sports teams at Elk Lake, which is her home district. Will Squier serves as the Elk Lake cross country coach.
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Following are results from assorted leatues at Maplewood Lanes Bolwing, Montrose, PA.
Maplewood Classic (11/19/04)
Team standings: Maplewood Lanes 132; Dandy Mart 127; C&A Vending 122 1/2; Maplewood Pro Shop 105 1/2; Triple C 104.
C&A vending had the top team scratch game of 959 and Dandy Mart had the top scratch series of 2636.
Top scratch series and games for the week were as follows:
Brian Rinker topped all bowlers with a perfect score of 300. Congratulations Brian and a nice 776 series. He was followed by Wes Warner 269-690; Bob Mann 267-706; Therm Silverstrim 257-702; John Polons 247-691.
Dale Hayner is average leader with a nice 223.
Red Wallace Memorial (11/17/04) Team Standings: Snake Creek Marine 206 1/2; Kelley Klan 201 1/2; Dan Warner Excavating 192 1/2; Shirts R Special 180; Nicholson Tire 179 1/2.
Dan Warner Excavating had the high team game of 1248 and team high series of 3412.
Leading all scorers this week was Brad Jenson earning an 11 in a row award with a 290 and 679. He was followed by Chancey Kelley 280-675; Jason Rinker 266-717; Walter Griffin 259; Bill Himko 258-676.
Saturday Nite Specials (11/23/04)
Team Standings: Misfits 31 1/2; Rolling Thunder 28; The Odd Couples 28; Sandbagers 27; All In The Family 27.
High scores for the last two weeks are: Rob Fitting 246-633; Matt Fitting 222; Ray Johnson 269-676; Craig Keller 244-685; Vic Arnold 233; Donna Gow 236-586; CC Spadine 221-552; Anne Hunsinger 188-532; Tamra Webb 177.
This league is made up of peewee bowlers. They use the bumpers and bowl 2 games. This is an introduction to bowling and to prepare the bowlers for the Bantam League. They are coached by a very competent Julie Dailey. There are 9 bumpers who each make up a team.
The standings are: Julia Traver, Brianna Brace, Zachery Alexander, Rebekah Tiffany, Justin Loomis, Kahlan Delahan, Krystal Swingle, Paige Oakley, Jolynn Zawisky.
These bowlers will move on as they acquire skills. The bowling lanes will be writting a report on Bantams, Preps, Juniors and Majors and you will see by scores and awards that our area has some top notch junior bowlers.
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