Tag Archives: Sports

BWG soccer teams were at it again this weekend


| agiudice@ridgewoodtimes.com

Photo courtesy of Blau Weiss Gottschee

Many of the Blau Weiss Gottschee soccer teams took the pitch this weekend seeking victory.

The biggest story for the BWG teams was the BWG Girls 98 Blue team winning the 2015 NYC College Showcase Tournament. They defeated the Bridgeport Premier team 1-0 in the finals of the tournament.

The BWG Blue U8 team played a very good game and beat Vera Soccer Club 6-2 in their second game of the Cosmopolitan Junior Soccer League’s (CJSL) A Division. In the same division, the BWG Royals were victorious 1-0 against Korabi SC.

The BWG U9 White team played two games over the weekend, but failed to win either game. BWG fell 1-2 against FC Select Orange and lost 5-0 against Chelsea Piers.

In the second game of the young CJSL season, the BWG 2004 White lost to the Manhattan Kickers 2004 by a score of 3-8.

The BWG pre-academy 2002 teams played over the weekend as well with mixed results. The BWG 2002 White team won their game against Oakwood, 6-5. The BWG 2002 Blue team tied both of their contests, 4-4 against NYSC and 1-1 against Albertson.

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Bayside boxer brings home Golden Gloves


| agiudice@ridgewoodtimes.com

Photo courtesy of JP Yim

One young boxer from Bayside has earned one of boxing’s most prestigious amateur awards, the Daily News Golden Gloves.

Stylianos Kalamaras, 25, defeated five competitors over the eight-week event to capture his first Light Heavyweight Golden Gloves championship during the 88th annual tournament.

“I had one of the most impressive records in the tournament,” Kalamaras said. “I had two TKOs [technical knockouts], there was only one other guy to have that. In the finals, I was the only guy to knock somebody down to the canvas in this tournament.”

In the finals on April 2, Kalamaras faced off against Franklin Johnson in the 178-pound novice division at the Barclays Center.

“I felt confident I would take the tournament,” Kalamaras said.

This wasn’t Kalamaras’ first time at the Golden Gloves, having competed back in 2011, where he lost by decision in the semifinals.

“I feel should have won that fight. I knocked that guy down, too,” Kalamaras said. “I hurt him and they gave him the decision.”

In 2013, Kalamaras won the New York Metro Championship and was victorious in the 31st annual Battle of the Badges charity event that was held in Madison Square Garden. Kalamaras fought for the FDNY and defeated the NYPD’s representative to win the title belt.

“I think that was my best fight to date,” Kalamaras said of the Battle of the Badges fight. “I knocked the guy out. It was exciting, especially since it was my first time really fighting in front of a lot of people like that in boxing at Madison Square Garden.”

Kalamaras has been boxing since the age of 16, “but now in the past two years I’ve been taking it seriously,” he said. Prior to boxing, he earned awards in judo.

Photo by Anthony Giudice

Photo by Anthony Giudice

“My father put me in judo when I was 8 years old and I was really good in judo,” Kalamaras said. “I was a three-time junior Olympic gold medalist, five-time national champion, six-time international champion. I’ve been all over the world.”

The amateur boxer is also a full-time student at Queens College where he is studying exercise science and nutrition, in hopes of getting into a program in the field of physical therapy. Kalamaras hopes to start a career in training and help other athletes as a physical therapist.

He is a Navy reservist as well, having enlisted in 2010 in the Navy’s construction unit as an engineer and is currently a Second Class Petty Officer.

Kalamaras is now looking to earn a national ranking in boxing and eventually try out for either the American or Greek teams in the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. Once he gains more experience and exposure, the young, amateur boxer wants to turn professional.

“My goal is to … get sponsored so I could really focus on doing this full time,” Kalamaras said. “I don’t want to drop school either because school is always important, too.”

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St. John’s baseball wins fourth straight game


| agiudice@ridgewoodtimes.com

Photo courtesy of St. John's Athletics

After sweeping a weekend road series in Indiana against Big East Conference foe Butler, St. John’s Red Storm traveled to Brooklyn to defeat the LIU Brooklyn Blackbirds, 6-3.

The scoring opened up in the third inning when the Red Storm’s Michael Donadio tripled to center field with one out in the inning. Zach Lauricella followed that with an RBI groundout to put St. John’s up 1-0.

The Blackbirds answered right back, scoring three runs in the bottom of the third. St. John’s starter, Joey Christopher, gave up a two-out walk and was lifted from the game. Alex Katz came in for relief, but promptly walked the next two batters to load the bases.

LIU Brooklyn wasted little time making St. John’s pay, as first baseman Mark Hernandez doubled to center, driving in three runs, giving them a 3-1 lead.

St. John’s began chipping away at the Blackbirds’ lead in the fourth inning when second baseman Ty Blankmeyer reached on an error to score Troy Dixon, cutting LIU Brooklyn’s lead to 3-2.

In the following frame, St. John’s tied the game at 3 when Jarred Mederos hit an RBI double into right field.

The Red Storm retook the lead in the seventh inning when Donadio lined a hard RBI single up the middle, scoring Alex Caruso who reached base on an infield single and moved to second on a wild pitch.

With the score 4-3, St. John’s added two more runs in the top of the ninth to increase their lead to 6-3.

This was the Red Storm’s fourth consecutive victory, bringing them to a 16-10 overall record.

St. John’s next game is April 8, as they host Columbia at 3:30 p.m.

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Argonauts finish second in NY State Federation Tournament


| agiudice@ridgewoodtimes.com

Photo courtesy Maspeth High School

After winning the B Division City Championship in the Public School Athletic League (PSAL), the Maspeth High School boys varsity basketball team followed up that performance with a second-place showing in the New York State Federation Class B Tournament.

In their first tournament game, Maspeth faced off against a tough Dwight School Lions team in the SEFCU Arena at the University of Albany.

The Argonauts didn’t get off to a promising start, falling behind 10-2 in the opening minutes. At the beginning of the second quarter, Maspeth put together a 10-2 run to tie the game at 12. The Lions quickly took back control of the game, scoring 18 points in just over four minutes. Dwight held a commanding 35-19 lead heading into the half.

The Argonauts had a tough task ahead of them but were more than up for the challenge. They chipped away at Dwight’s lead during the third and fourth quarters and with two minutes remaining in the game, the Argonauts trailed by only one point, 47-46.

Maspeth’s Paolo Tamer hit a layup with 1:30 left, giving the Argonauts a 48-47 lead. Matthew Nickel followed that up with a 3-pointer, putting Maspeth up 51-47.

Dwight’s Dajuan Piper then hit a layup and was fouled. He scored the free throw and brought the Lions to within one point of the Argonauts with 30 seconds remaining in the game.

Maspeth missed two free throws, giving the Lions one final chance, but Dwight missed a short jumper at the buzzer to cement the Argonauts’ comeback victory, 51-50, sending them to the finals of the tournament.

In the finals, Maspeth faced off against Park School, although their fate would not be the same.

The Park School Pioneers jumped all over the Argonauts from the tip off, leading 18-10 after the first and 35-24 at the half. The Pioneers put together a 15-0 run during the third quarter and led 50-29 heading into the fourth quarter.

The game ended with the Pioneers victorious, 71-50, dashing the Argonauts’ dreams of a state championship.

“It was a tough game for us as the five starters on that team were all over 6 foot 2 inches,” Maspeth coach Anastasia Bitis said. “Our team never gave up even after being down by 20-plus points.”

The Argonauts are looking forward to next year to defend their PSAL title and possibly bringing home the state championship.

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BWG soccer teams open up spring season with big wins


| agiudice@ridgewoodtimes.com

Photo courtesy BWG Soccer

Many of the Blau Weiss Gottschee (BWG) soccer club teams kicked off their 2015 spring seasons on Saturday, March 28.

The BWG U8 Blue team had its first league game of the spring season and dominated the entire match, winning 8-2 against Dutch Total Soccer.

The BWG U9 White team played two matches over the weekend. In the first contest, the U9 team won 3-0 versus the Manhattan Kickers. Goals were scored by Jakub Rembiszewski, Malik Mashrigi and Kevin Uni.

In the second game of the young Cosmopolitan Junior Soccer League (CJSL) season, the BWG U9 White team beat PSG 3-1. Goals were scored by Joaquin Franco, Marco Bogdanovick and Dylan Gage.

In its first game of the season in CJSL, the BWG 2004 White U10 team defeated NY Stars Premier Pulsar by a score of 7-1. The U10 team took a four-goal lead in the first half with a quick passing attack. Fortunately in the second half, the BWG team was able to keep up the pressure and preserve its large lead.

The BWG U10 girls won their opening game against Gotham Girls FC 9-1. Goals by Ashley Keiblesz (3), Ashley Chimborazo (2), Alexa Kieblesz, Sydney Morgan, Isabella Muro and Raquel Gonzalez sealed the deal in this one-sided match.

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Flushing middle schooler is a taekwondo star


| agiudice@ridgewoodtimes.com

Photo courtesy Eagles Tae Kwon Do

Uni Ha is an eighth-grader at I.S. 25 in Flushing who travels around the world living her dream, competing in taekwondo competitions.

Ha, 13, has many achievements in the martial arts discipline of taekwondo and is currently ranked a second dan black belt. Last summer she became the youngest athlete to make it onto the USA National Team in taekwondo.

“It is an honor to just place in the nationals,” Ha said. “To be on the National Team and to be the youngest member is an honor.”

After earning a position on the USA National Team, Ha entered the Costa Rica Open Championship, an international competition, in August. At the event, she came away with a gold medal.

In September, Ha flew to Mexico for a competition and brought home another medal. Then in November, she traveled to Canada for the Toronto Open where she represented the USA and won the bronze medal.

The largest international competition, the U.S. Open Championship, was held in January. Ha was at that event and medaled yet again. In February, Ha also medaled at the Canada Open. During the national qualifier on March 8, Ha took home the gold in her division and defeated a 17-year-old fighter to win the gold medal in that division as well. Ha returned from the Mexico Open in Aguascalientes, Mexico, on March 15 with another gold medal around her neck.

“The Mexico Open is a really great atmosphere and very professional,” Ha said. “It was my second time there and I’ve learned so much through it. After finishing with a silver my first time, I wanted to do better this time.”

“This one was really hard for me,” she said. “It takes a lot of dedication and hard work. It’s a great experience.”

Besides being an adept taekwondo athlete, Ha is a great student, earning a 95 percent average on her last report card. She has an acceptance letter from St. Francis Preparatory high school and is waiting to hear from Townsend Harris High School. She is also heavily involved in community service by teaching taekwondo in local public schools, churches and community centers.

Ha’s coach at Eagle’s Tae Kwon Do in Flushing, Andrew Park, said, “She has done a tremendous job. She works real hard and is a great kid.”

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Maspeth High School boys win championship


| agiudice@ridgewoodtimes.com

Photo courtesy Maspeth High School

The Maspeth High School boys basketball team completed their quest for a perfect season when they defeated Frederick Douglass Academy III, 57-42, on Saturday, March 21, in the finals of the Public School Athletic League (PSAL) B Division championship tournament.

The Argonauts dominated the game at Baruch College from the beginning, scoring 18 in the first quarter and 17 in the second, giving them a 35-17 lead heading into halftime. Frederick Douglass Academy III picked up the pace in the second half, outscoring the Argonauts in both the third and fourth quarters, but the big deficit was too much to overcome.

Maspeth High School had four players score in double digits, and three of those students finished the game with double-doubles. Team captain, senior Damian Piszczatowski, scored 11 points and added 13 rebounds, senior Michael Bugaj dropped 12 points and grabbed 12 rebounds and senior Paolo Tammer put up 13 points and pulled down 10 rebounds. Junior Matthew Nickel added 10 points in the effort.

The Argonauts finished the regular season 18-0, and were unbeaten throughout the playoffs to end their championship season, and first full season in the PSAL, 23-0.

“Honestly, it still hasn’t totally sunk in that we actually made this happen,” Argonauts coach Anastasia Bitis said. “I had a moment with 30 seconds left that I looked up and realized that the game was over and I just broke down. It’s extremely overwhelming—it feels unreal. This was a vision that I had since last year. I’m extremely grateful. I am very proud of my boys!”

The Argonauts head to Albany this weekend for the State Federation Tournament, where they will face off against Westhill.

“We have already started scouting and analyzing them. I believe we are ready,” Bitis said.

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Maspeth High School basketball makes the finals


| agiudice@ridgewoodtimes.com

Photo: Courtesy Maspeth High School

The Maspeth High School Argonauts boys varsity basketball team continued its roll in the Public School Athletic League (PSAL) B-division championship tournament by defeating South Bronx High School on Sunday, March 15, at Queens College by a score of 71-64, advancing to the tournament finals.

The game saw the Argonauts jump out to an early lead, taking a 33-27 score into halftime. South Bronx battled their way back in the second half, scoring 29 points and knotting the game up at 56-56 after regulation. In overtime, the Argonauts dominated, outscoring South Bronx 15-8 to come out victorious.

Senior Paolo Tamer lead the Argonauts with a double-double, dropping 26 points and pulling down 10 rebounds. Junior Matthew Nickel added 18 points of his own to help Maspeth High School remain undefeated on the season.

The Argonauts will face off against Frederick Douglas Academy III on Saturday, March 21, in the championship game at Baruch College’s main gym at 1 p.m.

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Wristband collects fans’ experiences at US Open tent


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

Photos courtesy Dominick Totino Photography

In case you’re at the US Open and wondering what those funky royal blue bracelets are that many people are wearing, they are called MyOpen Passes.

American Express brought the RFID-enabled wristbands to the Grand Slam for the first time, giving users a way to record their experiences in its tent without charge.

During the two-week tennis tournament, fans who enter the American Express Fan Experience area and use its stations will be sent an email with details and pictures of their activities via the wristband technology.

In the swing analysis station, for example, a machine measures someone’s impact position, racquet speed and spin rate, aiming to help players use that data to improve. The results will be sent to the fan through the bracelet.

To use the wristband, fans have to register for it when they enter the tent.

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Besides the swing analysis, fans can pose for images in a station called pro cam, where numerous cameras are mounted in a half-circle. The resulting image moves in 180 degrees, showing the photo from various angles.

And for those fans who want to take a picture with a pro player, but have not been lucky enough to meet one, rest assured, because there is also a station where fans can take a picture with a hologram of Sloane Stephens.

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Serena Williams to host tennis clinic with Queens youngsters


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of Dominick Totino

Defending US Open champion Serena Williams is set to serve up a fun clinic for some lucky local kids.

The 17-time Grand Slam singles champion is hosting a youth tennis clinic on Thursday just days before the 2014 US Open at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows Corona Park.

About 25 children ages 7 to 12 from the Corona-based Elmcor Youth & Adult Activities Community Center are set to meet and play with Williams.

The clinic is part of the “Returning the Love” initiative, where players reach out to surrounding community organizations both on and off the court.

 

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Astoria resident creates social platform to connect fans in time for World Cup


| aaltamirano@queenscourier.com

Images Courtesy Fanspectrum


Next week fans won’t have to make the trip down to Brazil in order to cheer on their favorite teams in the FIFA World Cup; instead, their support will just be one click away.

Sports fan, former athlete and Astoria resident Vibor Cilic is expected to launch a new social platform called Fanspectrum, which will allow fans to show their support, regardless of their location, during the big games and also interact with other soccer enthusiasts.

“I would watch sports, I would watch my favorite team – Barcelona – and I would always ask myself, how do I connect with other fans?” said Cilic, who came up with the idea for Fanspectrum while watching games at Scorpio Cafe & Bar in Astoria. “How do you expand that real stadium into a global stadium?”

Fanspectrum, which will be available for free on the iPhone, Android and at www.fanspectrum.com, will have four features fans can access once they create an account and choose their favorite team.

The first core feature is called a “Fan Battle” where supporters of one team go against those of another and see which has the largest support. In this feature, the user will be able to enter a stream of social media posts for that specific match in which they have entered. The user will be able to post comments, videos and pictures, answer polls, create questions and comment.

In regards to the World Cup, fans will be able to access this feature during specific matches.

“Not everybody can make it to Brazil,” Cilic said. “We offer them a solution, for every fan’s voice to be heard, no matter where they are and what they do.”

Another feature is called a “Fan Map” where users will be able to pinpoint the locations of fans. According to Cilic, this will allow users to see where the larger groups of fans are coming from.

Fanspectrum will also have a Leaderboard which ranks the best fans for a specific team and time period. In this feature, the more fans a user invites, the higher they reach on the board.

The last feature is known as a “Fan Army,” which Cilic says works like a Facebook group but beyond just hitting the “like” button, allowing more user interaction.

“What we want to provide is that real-time engagement and real fans supporting their teams,” said Cilic, who hopes as the social platform becomes more known, fans will be able to receive physical rewards. “The whole point is for fans to be recognized as leaders and for us in the longer term to reward the fans.”

Once it officially launches, Fanspectrum will start with soccer fans, mainly focusing on the World Cup games. However, Cilic hopes to move the social platform forward in order for it to be available for fans of all different sports.

 

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Bayside softball escapes upset in playoff trap game


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photos by Liam La Guerre


The Bayside High School softball team’s reward for being excellent all year was almost the cause for its demise in the 2014 PSAL playoffs.

The city’s second-ranked softball team earned a two-game bye because of its 15-1 record and tie for first in the Queens A Division, delaying its playoff debut until the sweet sixteen round on May 27 against Curtis High School of Staten Island.

But rust from the two-game hiatus quickly showed. Curtis, the 15-seeded team, jumped to an early 2-0 lead in the first inning and Bayside was trailing 5-4 by the fifth inning. Bayside was looking at an upset and early exit from the tournament, when the team quickly woke up in the bottom of the fifth inning led by senior Heidi Gomez, and they won the game 9-5.

“It’s a double-edged sword,” Coach Steve Piorkowski said, referring to the bye. “Skills like hitting and pitching you need to be game sharp, you want to be competing straight through.”

Gomez, the team’s ace pitcher, finished with 12 strikeouts and a complete game, but she gave up four walks and eight hits, including a monster three-run homer, which gave Curtis its 5-4 lead in the fifth.

But following her mistake, Gomez, who went 2-for-3 at the plate, started the Lady Commodores’ rally when she powered a single in bottom of the inning. Her pinch-runner eventually scored on a throwing error to first base to tie the game.

Later in the inning, with one base runner, senior catcher Taylor Moy smacked a triple, giving Bayside the lead. Then Moy scored on a wild pitch during the next at-bat to expand the lead, 7-5.

“I was like, we got to catch back up, we’re going to lose and I don’t want to lose,” Moy said. “So we had to rally, push through, make contact — any contact possible.”

Bayside quieted Curtis’ offensive for the remainder of the game and expanded their lead in the next inning. With the trap game behind them, the team feels that they’ll be in shape for the next round.

“I think if we play how we normally play, we’ll do great,” Gomez said.

Bayside will host George Washington of Manhattan on Thursday at 4 p.m.

 

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Mayor de Blasio to throw first pitch at Mets’ Opening Day


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Liam La Guerre

Follow me @liamlaguerre

 

Baseball season is almost here, and the new mayor wants to get in on the action.

Mayor Bill de Blasio will throw out the ceremonial first pitch for the Mets’ Opening Day at Citi Field on Monday.

The mayor will be accompanied by children from the East Harlem Tutorial Program, who were affected by the recent building collapse.

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Prep teams eye championships


| ncarousso@queenscourier.com

Photos courtesy of Neil A. Carousso

This fall sports season, the Saint Francis Prep Terriers have dominated on the gridiron, volleyball court and in gymnastics — going a combined 22-0.

The Terriers football team is 6-0 in Catholic High School Football League (CHSFL) competition after their 35-14 victory last Saturday night, October 20, in Brooklyn against the Bishop Ford Falcons. The Lady Terriers volleyball team is undefeated as well, beating the Archbishop Molloy Stanners in all three meetings, each one in a three set sweep. The Terriers gymnastics team has blown away their competition in the Catholic High School Athletic Association (CHSAA), winning all six meets this season.

Senior captain quarterback Jack Hurley

The Terriers football team has one regular season game remaining against Saint Peter’s Eagles on Saturday, October 27, before the CHSFL playoffs begin. The program is making a comeback after two poor years in the CHSFL “AAA” division in 2009-2010, before taking a step down to the “AA” division last season and losing in the CHSFL “A” championship game against Bishop Ford. Senior captain and starting quarterback Jack Hurley has remained poised and focused on each game. Hurley’s approach has resonated with his teammates as they embark on their “road to the title.” “It’s so important [to go deep in the CHSFL playoffs]; we want to bring Prep football back,” Hurley said.

The Terriers are confident that they can come away with a championship this season.

“We believe we can go all the way, but we are going to have to work extremely hard everyday in practice,” Hurley said.

On the volleyball court, the Lady Terriers have dominated the last half decade, winning five straight Brooklyn/Queens Division I titles. Four of the last five seasons the Lady Terriers finished the regular seasons. This season the Lady Terriers are seeking another city championship as well as a state title.

“This might be our sixth [straight] title, but we’re not going into [the playoffs] expecting to win. We play each game one at a time,” said senior captain Kelly Flynn.

The Saint Francis girls’ volleyball team has beaten their rival, the Molloy Stanners, but remain humble — in the playoffs anything can happen. “Molloy is a really solid team, there’s no doubt about that, and they play strong each time they play against us. They’re out to get us, as every team

Senior Captain Kelly Flynn

is, but with the way we play, and the players we have, we’re going into the postseason with the drive and intensity to win and show them who we are,” said Flynn, a prospective Division I collegiate athlete.

The Saint Francis Prep gymnastics team is seeking a third straight CHSAA title. They have thrived this season against the Holy Trinity Titans, Kellenberg Firebirds and Saint John the Baptist Cougars. The experienced Terriers are controlling their excitement about the CHSAA Championships, which will be at Prep on Saturday, October 27 at noon.

“After performing at six meets, the mindset of the team is to give it our all, but most importantly have fun. At championships, it’s individual, so we need to still work hard and be very focused, if each one of us wants it and I know we do,” said senior captain Marisa Marden. “This year was great and I’ll remember it the most. We are a family and I’ll miss it so much. We worked hard, but it was fun and successful.”

Saint Francis Prep athletics is flourishing this fall season with football, ladies volleyball and gymnastics all seeking championships. Focus, poise, dedication and work ethic were strengths among these three teams during the regular season, and these attributes will need to be carried over to the postseason if the teams want to bring championship hardware home to Prep.

Funtopia sweeps the week


| hzwillenberg@queenscourier.com

Vigliotti-funtopia-042812

Funtopia racked up two more wins last week in Bayside Little League’s Texas Division, first besting York Electrical 9-5 on the strength of Johnny Douveas’s second-inning grand slam, then battling to a 15-14 win over Castro Law Office.

Danny Bhola’s first-inning homer set the stage for that hard-fought game, which featured great plays from both teams.