2017-18 Stan Niemiec Youth Travel League Report


Montvale, NJ 11-19-17 – Hi-Tor I escaped the cellar in this week’s youth travelers’ action by taking five of seven points from Montvale in a high-scoring, well-played  match, 3006-2953. As a team, Hi-Tor averaged better than 200/player/game, rolling consistent top-notch net numbers of 812-815-812: 2439. Matt Cona proved to be a lot sharper than his prior week’s initial threesome, firing 816, the session’s high handicap set with a scratch triple deuce 201-226-233: 660; his mates all struck gold as well: Vinny Avallone 240: 622, Mark Shapiro 224-216 and Alisha Khan 224. For Montvale, Pascack Valley junior Brian Biml had a breakout week, posting the morning’s high game 257 and high series 673. Fifteen-year old Chris Torres added a stellar 225-193-213: 631, anchor Henry Tipping 232-204 and Logan Priesel with 196, his highest sanctioned game to date.

With the exception of anchor Mercedes Morel, the high-flying Hi-Tor II distaffers employed a different lineup, again showing their depth, blasting a net 2399 as they took over the top spot via a convincing sweep of Lodi, 2852-2602; the New Yorkers battered Montvale’s maples with eight deuces, led by Nicole Cona 234-223: 644, Olivia Kohut 213-201, Nancy Kohut 213-200 and Mercedes Morel 210-201. Experiencing a below-average outing, Lodi’s solitary “200” was Nick Greco’s third game 206 with Hassan Izzard second high with 197. The two squads will clash again next week in a position encounter at Hi-Tor Lanes.

Holiday regained possession of third place, sweeping three games from short-handed Bowler City I, 2789-2595. Igniting the victors were Jared Duncan 642: 222-197-223, David Neil 633: 206-232-195 and Rachel Duncan with an opening 211 score. BC I’s Arielle Wallace continued pounding the plastic-coats, smashing a closing 253 to finish with 623; the Hackensack H.S. junior raised her average to just shy of 198. Thirteen-year-old Peyton Esposito contributed a second game 178 for the BC I squad.

Surging T-Bowl exploded with a 863 net in its finale to come away with five of seven points in its face off with Bowler City II, 2941-2732. Scorching the pin decks for the winners were a pair of Wayne Hill sophomores: Dylan Heinold 642: 205-181-256 and Tommy Luchetta 639: 203-196-240; leadoff kegler Chris Rysz chipped in with a fine 205: 584 set. The normally high-scoring Bowler City II team, despite using three players averaging 200+, could only muster a pair of deuces in the match: Peter Bondy 211 and Derek Lewandowski 226; Derek posted a 601 set, high for the quartet. Other creditable games for BC II were Steve DeFabiis 198-195 and Mia Aish 193.



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2017-18 Stan Niemiec Youth Travel League


Oakland, NJ 11-12-17 – When the mist dissipated upon completion of Stan Niemiec YTL play at Holiday Bowl, forty-two deuces, six “650+” and eight “600+” had been rolled by the gifted young keglers. In the highest scoring faceoff of the session, Hi-Tor I, despite delivering seven “200s”, was swept by its sister squad, which fired six deuces of its own. Average leader Nick Varano 686 [246-204-236] and 12-year-old Dylan Busalan 667 [234-238-195] chased the maples off the pin decks for Hi-Tor I with Mark Shapiro and Matt Cona tallying fine singles of 217 and 213 respectively; their efforts weren’t enough to stop Hi-Tor II’s freight train. Anchor Mercedes Morel propelled the distaffers with 679 [246-268-165], gaining plenty of help from Isabella Palamaro 603 [163-225-215], Tor Verano 584 [203-170-211] and Akira DeLoatch [190-210]. Known for its talent depth, Hi-Tor II called on Nancy Kohut 646 and Nicole Cona 576 to assist Tor Verano 637 and Isabella Palamaro 610 in outgunning Bowler City II, 5-2 in a completion of a match from opening week. The twin victories catapulted the New Yorkers into second place.

Lodi strengthened its hold on the top rung by capturing seven points in a nail-biter encounter with Montvale, taking the opener by thirteen sticks and a thrilling high-scoring middle game by six pins, 1010-1004; pacing Lodi were anchor Hunter Perry 664 [177-260-227] and Trevor Deliantis with 648 [223-205-220]; Jake Nappi added a 203: 582 and Amanda Madara finished strong with a 210 single. Montvale’s high rollers were Chris Torres 214-279: 648, Matt Russell 190-235-212: 637 and Henry Tipping 218: 599; Logan Priesel celebrated his 14th birthday by matching or surpassing his average all three games.

Bowler City II moved past Holiday by whitewashing the defending champs, 7-0 behind a stellar outing from its quartet: Steve DeFabiis 673, molded via a triple deuce 225-212-236, Peter Bondy 247: 623, Michael Bellifemini 211-190 and Mia Aish 203. Sparking Holiday’s offense was Ryan McGuire 681 [215-235-231], Jared Duncan 233: 604 and Rachel Duncan 202.

T-Bowl broke firmly from the gate and never looked back as it swept its match with Bowler City I, 7-0 behind Tommy Luchetta 619 [217-188-214] and Chris Rysz 192-203; Dylan Heinold contributed a 210 and Mostafa Saleh 183 for the victors. Arielle Wallace was the spark plug for short-handed BC I, firing 614 on games of 192-198-224; Patrick Kane recovered from a forgettable opening game with an impressive 221 and Peyton Esposito posted a 174.

Average leaders [12+ games]: Nick Varano 238, Matt Russell 226, David Neil 220, Tom Chamberlain 219, Dylan Bulusan 217 and Steven DeFabiis 210.


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11/11/17 – Junior bowling leagues have been running for several weeks now and among those young keglers are a significant number of high school students  looking forward to Wednesday when the tryouts/practices commence for the 2017-18 season. The ever popular pre-season and seasonal tournaments have already begun, notably the Central Jersey Challenge Tournament. Talented southpaw Rhianna Smith, now a senior at Mount Olive H.S. in Morris County, won the event and I daresay will again appear Saturday, December ninth at Parkway Lanes to participate in Mike LoPresti’s 18th Annual North Jersey H.S. Singles Championships. Rhianna, one of the state’s top distaff bowlers, won the event in 2016 and reached the semis last year.

Other than those mentioned above, two notable events of interest will take place in early December: The Bob James Memorial Classic at Bowlero North Brunswick [Carolier] Lanes and the 7th Annual Tom Irwin Memorial Crusader Classic at Bowler City in Hackensack.

Adult/Youth Tourneys are engaging as well and are open to all sanctioned junior and adult bowlers, not just high school students. One such event is the Rockland County Annual Junior/Adult Tournament to be conducted at Hi-Tor Lanes in West Haverstraw, NY the weekend of December 2nd-3rd; the squad times are Saturday at 3:00 pm and Sunday at 1:00 pm; bear in mind, though, that entrants must be sanctioned in Rockland County, so if you’re a New Jersey bowler and wish to participate, you will need to pay the local sanction fee; the Doubles event has a 90% handicap of the difference between the team average and 470; entries will close Friday, December 1st, so for those interested, get in touch with Hi-Tor’s Joe Ardiri at [845] 429-8000.

Within the fortnight, the Bergen Record should publish its 2017-18 North Jersey H.S. bowling preview. The playing field may well have leveled somewhat since there were a number of top-notch keglers who graduated this past June. Thus, it will be fascinating to see which schools will rise to the occasion in both the Big North and the North Jersey Interscholastic Conference. In the latter, Queen of Peace closed its doors in June and Paterson Charter has been transferred from the Meadowlands Division to the Colonial Division which, along with the Patriot Division, conducts its schedule at Parkway Lanes. Weehawken, after a several years’ absence, expects to again field a team and be part of the Meadowlands Division which rolls their matches at Bowlero Wallington Lanes.


2017-18 Stan Niemiec Youth Travel League


Lodi, NJ 11-05-17 – When Tappan Zee senior Matt Russell broke the magical “800” barrier with 801 at Holiday Bowl in the Stan Niemiec Youth Travel League’s opener, many observers figured the off-the-charts performance would hold up as top individual net threesome for the season. Not happening because along came another New Yorker [must be the water], 15-year-old North Rockland sophomore Nicholas Varano who matched the 801 set, shattering Lodi’s plastic-coats with scores of 258-266-277. The scorching hot Varano now owns a four-week average of 241 after leading his short-handed Hi-Tor I squad to its first match win of the season, edging Bowler City I, 2681-2658 to gain five of seven points; teammates’ Mark Shapiro and Vinny Avallone chipped in with creditable games of 203 and 192 respectively. Pacing Bowler City’s offense was Arielle Wallace with 210: 585 with help from Trevor Savoye 185-187 and John Behr 184-184.

In an outstanding position encounter battle for first place, Bowler City II and Lodi combined for sixteen “200s” with the latter surviving BC II’s down the stretch finish to come away with seven points. Between them, the quartets averaged 210/player with the amazing gross team scores favoring Lodi: 1004-994, 1088-1081 and 1038-987. Lighting up the leaderboard for the victors were: Hawthorne senior Hassan Izzard 690 [204-217-238], Hawthorne junior Hunter Perry 659 [204-217-238], Fair Lawn junior Nick Greco 628 [194-231-203] and fine singles of 183-192 from Fair Lawn freshman Krista Eskow. BC II’s high rollers were paced by Steve DeFabiis 694 [245-205-244] and Derek Lewandowski 671 [227-242-202] with strong showings from George Ferguson 266-195 and newcomer Bergenfield senior Derek Weigl 209-189.

Holiday regained second place by outslugging Montvale, 2924-2827 behind a flurry of deuces posted by Dave Neil 686 [207-213-266], Tom Chamberlain 247-226: 666, Wade Chamberlain 214: 589 and Michael Milligan 200: 578. Montvale’s Joseph Mahoney was wielding his hammer like Thor, smashing the pin decks with 663 [204-211-248]; adding deuces to the team output were Chris Torres 213 and Michaella Raab 211 while improving newcomer Logan Priesel closed with over average games of +43 and +36 pins.

The Hi-Tor II distaff quartet welcomed back talented 13-year-old Tor Varano who finished last season with an impressive 192 average. Fueling her team’s charge, Tor fired 628 [200-225-203], Isabella Palamaro tallied 213-215: 596, Annamarie Zayas 201-180 and Mercedes Morel 189 in a sweep of short-handed T-Bowl. Top singles from the T-Bowl players included Dylan Heinold 193, Tommy Luchetta 182 and Mostafa Saleh 182.



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2017-18 Stan Niemiec Youth Travel League


Hackensack, NJ 10-29-17 – Hi-Tor I’s Nick Varano continued his relentless assault of pin decks, regardless of the venue. Coming off a stellar 667 at Lodi, Nick punished the maples at Bowler City, firing a session best 245-198-254: 697; coupled with Dylan Bulusan’s triple deuce 225-202-234: 661 and Vincent Avallone’s 181-217-204: 602, Hi-Tor I parlayed these high rollers’ efforts to capture three points from T-Bowl, coming back from a sixty-five stick deficit at the start of game three to snare wood, 2809-2802. The T-Bowl quartet took turns picking each other up in snaring games one and two; Wayne Hills’ sophomore Dylan Heinold led the squad with 234-193 while teammates’ Mostafa Saleh, Chris Rysz and Tommy Luchetta contributed 191-194, 173-192 and 180-187 respectively.

Teaneck sophomore Margaux Lesser, who last rolled in the league two years ago, returned in explosive fashion, blasting 249-190-234: 673 to carry Bowler City I past Hi-Tor II, 2839-2732, earning five points in the process. Teammate Peyton Esposito overcame a rough start to finish with a strong 227 while anchor Trevor Savoye closed with scores of 213-187. Hi-Tor II received a pair of deuces from Isabella Palamaro 203-213 and fine singles from Mercedes Morel 199, Akira DeLoatch 197-180 and Annamarie Zayas 179.

Bowler City II dropped two of three games to Montvale, 2730-2643 and yet regained possession of first place when Holiday was swept by Lodi. Although in fourth place, Montvale is just two points off the lead following its 5-2 victory; Henry Tipping had 264, the day’s best single and followed it with 225-183 for 672; anchor Matt Russell pounded out a triple deuce 236-200-213: 649 while Mahwah freshman Michaella Raab stung the plastic-coats with 190-192. BC II benefited from creditable outings from Peter Bondy 192-222-183: 597 and Steven DeFabiis 209-185-188: 582; Derek Lewandowski and Mia Aish rebounded from below-average games to finish with 215 and 190 respectively.

Holiday was knocked from the league lead and fell into a second place tie with Lodi which lit up the leaderboard with 2334 net in a surprising three-game shutdown of the former. Becton junior Trevor Deliantis put together superb scores of 225-223-214: 662 for Lodi which also garnered top-notch performances from Amanda Madara 190-186-193: 569, Hunter Perry 217-191 and Tyler Nappi 213.

Currently pacing the youth travelers in average are: Nick Varano 232, Matt Russell 231, Tom Chamberlain and David Neil 218, Dylan Bulusan 216 and Henry Tipping 209.

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2017-18 Stan Niemiec Youth Travel League


Lodi, NJ 10-22-17 – Defending champion Holiday regained first place in the Stan Niemiec Youth Travel League by sweeping past Hi-Tor II, 2791-2618. In rolling 2749 [206+/player], the session’s best scratch set, the victorious quartet rattled Lodi’s maples with seemingly reckless abandon, led by red-hot 16-year-old Tom Chamberlain [218 average] 227-213-236: 676 and 17-year-old David Neil [225 average] 236-198-215: 649; 16-year-old newcomer Jack Miller showed off his two-hand delivery with 217-181-211: 609 and southpaw Jared Duncan contributed three steady games, closing with 189: 545. Shorthanded Hi-Tor II’s distaffers fell six pins shy of pulling out game two with creditable outings from Isabella Palamaro 202-196, Mercedes Morel 193-191 and Akira DeLoatch 190.

Bowler City II took five of seven points from a strong Hi-Tor I quartet, 2911-2834, dropping the finale by two sticks after barely holding off the New Yorkers by ten pins in game two. The high-scoring match produced five “600+” sets, led by 15-year-old North Rockland sophomore Nicholas Varano 199-244-224: 667, Hi-Tor I’s talented anchor; also striking high marks for the latter were Tappan Zee juniors’ Mark Shapiro 192-180-236: 608 and Vincent Avallone 223: 574 along with Paramus Catholic junior Alisha Khan’s  laudable 202-174-228: 604. BC II’s Derek Lewandowski, despite some dismay over missed 10-pins, compensated with an abundance of strikes to tally a first-rate 216-195-248: 659, third best threesome for the session; 16-year-old Waldwick junior Steven DeFabiis fashioned a sparkling 194-223-198: 615 and Derek’s other teammates’ Michael Bellifemini and Mia Aish chipped in with 213: 550 and 184-177 respectively.

Lodi’s other quartet from their eight-player roster meshed well in a decisive three game shutout of Bowler City I, 2949-2792. Fair Lawn junior Nick Greco, Lodi’s capable anchor, shelled the pin decks with 190-236-215: 641 and teammate Hassan Izzard set the table with a sterling 232-184-205: 621; Krista Eskow closed with 180 and Tyler Nappi added 178-179. BC I’s Victoria Vucak had trouble figuring lane conditions early on, but caught fire late in game one and finished with 229-213: 607; High Tech freshman John Behr put together a flurry of strikes in his opening game to finish with 254, the afternoon’s top single; Arielle Wallace finished with a commendable 201 and River Dell freshman Jake Edelstein helped with a second game 17 pins over average effort.

T-Bowl exploded with a 972 finish to earn two points against third place Montvale behind Tommy Luchetta 214, Chris Rysz 213 and Mostafa Saleh 191. Chris garnered two other deuces [214-210] for a superb 637 threesome. Pacing Montvale were Joseph Mahoney 191-250-193: 634, Henry Tipping 195-205-193: 593, Brian Biml 201 and newcomer Logan Priesel, a 113 pins over average series.


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2017-18 Stan Niemiec Youth Travel League


West Haverstraw, NY 10-15-17 – In Stan Niemiec Youth Travel action at Hi Tor, Bergenfield senior Peter Bondy led the field with a 721 set, forged on stellar scores of 245-244-232 as he led Bowler City II into first place with a 7-0 conquest of Montvale. BC II’s 3126 handicap set [1050-1022-1054] was the young season’s third best. Sharing in the triumph was Teaneck sophomore Mia Aish 213: 583, Bergenfield freshman George Ferguson 201: 573 and Bergen Catholic sophomore Michael Bellifemini with a third game 189. Shredding the pins for Montvale were Tappan Zee keglers Matt Russell 236-204- 192: 632 and Chris Torres 224-215-: 607 with help from Bergen Catholic junior Ryan Kitz 204 and Mahwah freshman Michaella Raab 180.

Holiday slid into second place with a whitewash of shorthanded Bowler City I, 2879-2658; the victory was largely due to Tom Chamberlain’s outstanding threesome: 215-290-203: 708 with chip ins from brother Wade 211: 565, Rachel Duncan 192 and a breakout 243 finish from Indian Hills junior Jack Miller. Pacing BC I were Hackensack junior Arielle Wallace 209: 585, Teaneck sophomore Trevor Savoye 216: 572 and 14-year-old Patrick Kane with a closing 186.

The league’s two Hi Tor entries clashed and when the smoke cleared, Hi Tor II prevailed, snaring all seven points from Hi Tor I. Newcomer Olivia Kohut led the victors with an impressive 202-211-194: 607 with ample support from Mercedes Morel 231: 579, Isabella Palamaro 200: 553 and Annamarie Zayas 193: 515. Scorching the pin decks for Hi Tor I were Mark Shapiro 254-212: 632, 12-year-old Dylan Bulusan 225: 583, Josh Cruz 207: 580 and Alisha Khan 177: 527.

Wayne Hills’ sophomore Tom Luchetta continued his assault of the maples with 244-202-196: 642, lifting his three-week average to 204 as T-Bowl rallied for a 5-2 [2866-2808] triumph over Lodi. Also scoring well for the winners were 15-year-old Dylan Heinold 209: 562, 14-year-old Chris Rysz 225: 543 and Pompton Lakes sophomore Mostafa Saleh with a 181 finish. Lodi sprung from the gate with a 792 net, capturing the opener behind Jake Nappi 226 and Hunter Perry 224. Becton Regional junior Trevor Deliantis led his squad with 216-200: 601 while Hunter and Jake finished their sets with 599 and 549 respectively. Hawthorne sophomore Amanda Madara chipped in with 174-173: 504.



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