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A WATCHUNG COMMUNICATIONS, INC. PUBLICATION The Westfield Leader and THE TIMES of Scotch Plains - Fanwood Thursday, October 28, 1999 Page 27




Number Three Blue Devil Gymnasts Sparkle; Out-Twinkle Somerville Girls, 109.025-108.475 By DAVID B. CORBIN

Specially Written for The Westfield Leader and The Times

Knowing your opponent has a very special desire to defeat you is tough; however, it is especially rough when your opponent is the fourth-ranked Somerville girls whom you defeated, 107.2-107.05 last year to break their 28-meet winning streak and you must compete with them on their home turf. It happened on October 18 and the t h i r d r a n k e d We s t f i e l d High School gymnastics team met the challenge a n d s p a r k l e d with an awe inspiri n g , 1 0 9 . 0 2 5 1 0 8 . 4 7 5 , victory over the Pioneers in Somerville.

“They were definitely out to get us. They wanted to get revenge,” said Blue Devil Head Coach Ellen Kovac. “Of course we wanted to remain undefeated. And, usually when you are away, your team doesn’t have the home team advantage. I knew that we had to do especially well.”

The Blue Devils’ team total of 109.025 tops the previous Westfield High School record of 108.95 set at the state championships when they finished fourth last year at Shawnee High School in Medford on November 13.

“The scoring typically has been a little higher in that area (Somerville) over the years,” commented Kovacs. “So that is one reason why I felt that we could beat them even though we haven’t scored any

where near t h a t high here (Westfield area).”

Last year the Blue Devils enjoyed superb performances from Laurie Hogan and Julie Elmuccio who have since graduated and there had to be some speculation on the part of the Pioneers as to the strength of the Blue Devils.

“I am sure that they noticed that the Star Ledger ranked us above them even though the Courier News ranked them above us,” pointed out Kovac. “They had to know that we were

looking pretty good. Cindy (Wagner) is a good coach and I knew that she would take whatever talent she got and make the most of it.”

Blue Devil s o p h o

more L a u r e n Caravello performed marvelously and seized first in the all-around with an amazing total of 37.35. As last year’s state champion on the uneven bars, Caravello defended her crown magnificently, matching her score at the states with a 9.6. Pioneer sensation Jamie Day was second in the event with a 9.25. In probably one of her finest achievements, Caravello nailed her stunt in the vaulting to out-point

Day 9.3-9.2. “Lauren did her Tsukahara vault again and as far as she can remember, that was her first vaulting score over a nine,” commented Kovac. “The girls were able to use a Stratum board which is

a springier b o a r d than the one we have at Westfield. I guess that helped a little bit because our scores were good on vaulting. It was the highest event total on three of the

four events.” Lauren also scored quite

well on the balance beam and tied for

second with P i o n e e r s L a u r i n d a Sutpen and Diana Garrett at 9.1. “She used a higher level d i s -mount. She did a round off to a full-twisting back somersault,” explained Kovac. “She did it very well.”

Jessica Caravello aced her balance beam routine and took top honors with a 9.25. She was also very strong on all events and placed third in the all-around with a 36.325.

“Jessica has a beautiful beam routine but she did not do the side aerial because her routine was a sure enough thing and she did not want to risk falling off,” said Kovac. “The beam can be unforgiving and can ruin your meet.”

Caravello did, however, perform a very pretty but very difficult back

walkover (pausing in the middle nearly touching her hands to her heels), then reversed her direction to return to her starting point. This stunt displayed her amazing flexibility and balance.

“She also has two very wonderful back handsprings in a row which shows her power,” added Kovac.

Sophomore Christina Massa has been a tremendous addition to the team this year, especially in the vaulting where she placed third with an 8.95.

“She has a very nice handspring full-twisting vault,” said Kovac. “She is just about our best vaulter other than Lauren’s Tsukahara.”

Westfield Recreation Commission Sponsors

Haunted House Haunted House Haunted House Haunted House Haunted House

For More Information, Contact the Westfield Recreation Department at (908) 789-4080

WHO: WHO: WHO: WHO: WHO: Westfield Resident Youth and Their Parents

WHA WHA WHA WHA WHAT TT TT: :: :: A Night of Spine Chilling Thrills Through the Haunted House

WHEN: WHEN: WHEN: WHEN: WHEN: Sunday, October 31, 1999

WHERE: WHERE: WHERE: WHERE: WHERE: Memorial Pool Complex


COST COST COST COST COST: :: :: $1.00 per person. Children under 5 are free. NOTE: Event will be held under the roof at the Pool Complex. Rain is not a factor, however, the complex is not fully enclosed or heated, so please dress accordingly.

Speci Speci Speci Speci Special Thanks T al Thanks T al Thanks T al Thanks T al Thanks To Our Communit o Our Communit o Our Communit o Our Communit o Our Community Support y Support y Support y Support y Supporters: ers: ers: ers: ers:

Optimist Club of Westfield


The Party Stop/Costume Corner


Breakaway Run Claws Tigers Past Blue Devil Gridmen, 6-0


Specially Written for The Westfield Leader and The Times

Trench warfare and field position dominated the game, but it was one breakaway run that gave the Linden High School football team a 6-0 victory over a stubborn Westfield squad

in Linden on October 23. Blue Devil punter Ryan MacDonald raised eyebrows with 63-yard, wind-aided punt from scrimmage.

Because of the wind, the Tiger offense kept mostly to the ground but Blue Devil quarterback Chris

Giacone completed nine of 21 passes in an attempt to break the scoring deadlock which held until late in the fourth quarter.

The Blue Devil defense was involved in no less than 17 gang tackles when the Tigers attempted to establish their running game.

“It was a game of field position and weather,” said Blue Devil Head Coach Ed Tranchina. “The punts both teams had with the wind went long.”

Receiving against the strong wind, Blue Devil Mike Mroz grabbed the opening kickoff and returned it 15 yards to the 18; however, the drive stalled and MacDonald’s first punt from the 24 was caught by Tiger Mike Roman on the Tiger 45 and returned to the Devil 45. The Tigers moved the ball to the 18, then on the next play Blue Devil linebacker Pat Tuohy recovered a Tiger fumble on the one as the quarter ended.

The Blue Devils gobbled up four minutes in the second quarter on a 13 play drive which pushed as far as the 43 but later stalled at their own 33. After the punt, the Tigers drove back to the Devil 33 but Blue Devil defensive end Brian Gallagher killed the drive with a three-yard sack.

A nice 21-yard Giacone to Josh Ray pass play put the Devils in Tiger territory. Giacone, on a roll out, penetrated the 37 then three plays later, another reception by Ray placed the ball on the 20 with a fourth and one, MacDonald came in to attempt a 37


Rough County Seaters Repel Early Raider Invasion, 18-7


Specially Written for The Westfield Leader and The Times

Thoughts of remaining unbeaten vanished in the mountains of western New Jersey as a rough and determined Belvidere High School football team refused to let the Scotch Plains-Fanwood boys overrun them, taking to the air three times to grab an 18-7 victory on October 22. Raider halfback Nathan Jones had two breakaway runs, one which resulted in a touchdown.

The absence of senior offensive/defensive tackle Dan Loomis due to a hand inj u r y seemed t o have h a d e f fected t h e Raide r s b o t h offensively a n d defensively, but both the Raiders and the County Seaters exhibited plenty of spirit while waging one of the hardest hitting games of the season.

The “cracking” sounds of the pads began immediately as each team

wanted to exert its dominance, but it was the Raiders who won the initial battle. On the opening kickoff Raider Clifton Freshwater received the ball on the 15 and returned it to the 28. Jones sliced left to the 31, then on second down, Jones cut off tackle and sailed 69 yard for the touchdown with just :50 off the clock. Brian

Schiller’s kick put the Raiders up 7-0.

An out-ofbounds

kickoff gave the County Seaters the ball on the 35. Using a varied selection of running plays, the Seaters plowed to the Raider 36 where the drive was about to stall; however, two consecutive Raider penalties revved

up their engines at the eight with minutes left in the first quarter. From there quarterback Matt Sosnovik hit receiver Josh Costantino on the right side of the endzone

Throughout the second quarter, it was a battle of the trenches with neither side gaining any dominance. Crushing tackles by Raiders Ron Jenerette, Dave Herrmann, Jones and Andrew Pavoni countered the smashing tackles of the Belvidere defensive

line. Late in the quarter, Jones n e a r l y

pulled it off again as he slashed

through from the R a i d e r 17 and

sailed 59 y a r d s

before he was brought down at the Seater 24. Unfortunately, the stubborn Belvidere line held.

The real turning point came late in the third when Herrmann’s punt was picked up by Seater Jeff Kolodziejczyk on his own 25 and returned to the


Ghostwriter Blair for The Westfield Leader and The Times

BLUE DEVIL DEFENSE HOLDING THEIR GROUND…Several Blue Devils converge on a Tiger to make one of 17 gang tackles. Linebacker Mike Ciacciarelli, No. 59, heads in to assist. Linden did get a breakaway, 96-yard touchdown run for the only score of the game.
Copyright 1999 - The Westfield Leader and The Times of Scotch Plains-Fanwood
Covering Fanwood, Mountainside, Scotch Plains and Westfield, Union County, New Jersey (NJ)