Sports Roundup

Southern Regional Field Hockey Team Could Have a Big Week in Store

Oct 18, 2017

While this season is shaping up to be a big one for the Southern Regional field hockey team, this week in particular seems to be one of the pivotal ones for the Rams. Not only did they earn the third seed for the Shore Conference Tournament and have a shot to end up in the semifinals next week, the Rams (17-1) also are vying for an outright Shore Conference Class A South division crown.

On Tuesday, Oct. 17, Southern kicked off SCT play with an easy 4-0, first-round victory over 19th-seeded Henry Hudson, setting up what should be an exciting next few days. The Rams were slated to visit Toms River North on Wednesday with a shot to win the A South title outright. A loss to the Mariners means a share of the crown, which Southern already had clinched with a 4-0 win over Brick Memorial on Oct. 11. A victory over the Mariners means Southern goes undefeated in A South at 14-0.

But beyond that, Southern’s win over Hudson in the SCT also set up a potential quarterfinals clash with the sixth-seeded Mariners, who were scheduled to play 11th-seeded Wall on Tuesday as well. If the Rams and Mariners square off again, it will be Saturday, Oct. 21, at 10 a.m., according to Southern’s schedule online. A win over North in the SCT sends the Rams to the Oct. 25 semifinals for a potential rematch with second-seeded Shore Regional, which provided Southern’s first loss for the season – a 2-1 contest – on Sept. 20.

Since that loss, the Rams have been on fire, winners of 10 straight after ousting Hudson. Against Brick Memorial last week, Southern scored twice in each half, powered by Sam Minafo’s three goals and Maitland Demand’s three assists. During a 6-0 triumph over Central the day before, Minafo also scored three goals, while Erika Barbera added a goal and two assists.

Southern Gymnasts

Bounce Barnegat

The Southern Regional gymnastic team finally met its match last week, coming up short against Jackson Memorial for its first loss of the season. But on Oct. 16, the Rams bounced back to score a 102.525-86.95 victory over neighboring Barnegat and improved to 10-1 for the fall.

While the Bengals’ Kylie Picaro led the all-around with a 35.35 and teammates Christina Golaszewski took third all-around with a 29.25, the Rams used their high-powered depth to easily secure the win. Sarah Possidel took second on the vault with an 8.65, while Gabi Conforti grabbed third with an 8.625. On the uneven bars, Maria Mezzo took the top spot with an 8.5, followed by Conforti with an 8.25 and Autumn Shackleton and Possidel each with a 7.775. Mezzo tied with Picaro for first on the balance beam with an 8.75, while Shackleton (8.075) and Possidel (7.65) swiped the next two spots. Mezzo won the floor exercise with a 9.5 and Shackleton was third with a 9.125.

On Oct. 12 against the Jaguars, Southern scored a 103.8, but Memorial tallied a 105.05 for the win. Mezzo finished second all-around with a 35.25, placing third on vault with a 9.0, second on the bars with an 8.4, third on the beam with an 8.75 and tied for first on the floor with a 9.1. Conforti also scored a 9.1 on floor as part of a four-way deadlock for the top spot. Shackleton grabbed second on the vault with a 9.1, while Hailey Klimas snagged third on the bars with an 8.1.

Southern Football

Rebounds With Win

After its 1-4 start, the Southern Regional football team had to find some answers on offense if it intended to salvage its season and finish respectably, and on Oct. 13 the Rams started heading in that positive direction with a 20-7 win over Shore Conference Class A South foe Brick.

Senior Joe Miele was outstanding on both sides of the line, rushing for 78 yards and a touchdown while intercepting a pass and coming with four tackles and a sack on defense. The Rams (2-4) first got on the scoreboard in the second quarter, when quarterback Carmen Deo tossed a 2-yard pass to Schneider Juste. Zak Hem booted the extra-point kick for a 7-0 lead. In the third quarter a Matt Barnett TD run of 64 yards and Miele’s 1-yard plunge staked the Rams to a 20-0 lead heading into the fourth.

Meanwhile, Southern’s defense was stellar, holding the Green Dragons to only a half-dozen of first downs and 58 yards of total offense. The defense also forced a pair of fumbles, both of which the Rams recovered. Southern’s offense didn’t turn over the ball once and accumulated 241 yards rushing. Barnett finished with 74 yards on six carries. Deo finished 5-for-11 with 56 yards passing. Rob Gagliardi caught two passes for 38 yards.

— David Biggy

biggy@thesandpaper.net

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