Player with island ties on USA Baseball radar
Baseball fans: Remember John Kilichowski’s name.
This 18-year-old has strong island ties as part of the Busciglio family pyramid and Island roots that go back to the early 1950s, when his great-grandparents purchased a home on Anna Maria Island. John’s parents, Debbie and Bill, met on the island and much of the extended family now own homes and spend summers here.
The Tampa Jesuit left-handed pitcher has been identified by USA Baseball as one of the top high school baseball players in the nation following an arduous two-and-a-half-week tryout.
Kilichowski and 143 other high school players went to Cary, N.C., to go through a USAB tryout process that pared the group to 40 and again, to the top 28 players.
USAB used to pick the Olympic baseball team, but baseball is no longer an Olympic sport. Still, USAB takes part in international competitions and the selection process is the same.
Kilichowski made a strong case to be included in this elite group when he fanned five batters and allowed zero hits in his three innings of work during a June 26 intrasquad tryout game.
The 28 elite players will proceed with USAB to California Aug. 17, where they will play in both the Los Angeles Dodgers and Anaheim Angels stadiums. After a few days of play, USA Baseball will trim the roster to 20 and that group will travel to Seoul, South Korea, and Taiwan to represent the USA in the IBAF Junior AAA/18U World Championships
When asked how it felt to be identified as one of the 28 best high school players in the country, Kilichowski said, “Incredible.”
He continued, saying, “I can’t explain how difficult the whole process has been, playing all day every day, having coaches scrutinizing and critiquing every pitch or movement. Plus being away from my family and living in a hotel. And then to make the final 28 is just incredible.”
Kilichowski said his favorite team is the Tampa Bay Rays and his favorite player being David Price, and went on to say it was almost surreal, having coaches like Terry Francona, Jack McKeon, Jack McDowell and others work with him. The most exciting thing though, he said, was getting to wear the USA uniform.
It’s not just all baseball all the time with Kilichowski. He is in the AP-plus honors program at Jesuit and has a 4.2 grade point average. He volunteers in the community and takes part in a yearly mission trip to Belle Glade, Fla., to mentor younger kids.
Each year the family — approximately 80-100 Busciglio family members of which he is part — spends July 4 on Anna Maria Island. They have met on the beach for 15 years between Palmetto and Willow avenues to take an annual and friends and family pyramid picture. And that photo has frequently been featured in The Islander.
Kilichowski, who has already committed to attend Vanderbilt University on a baseball scholarship, can reach 90 mph on the radar gun, but his best pitch is his curveball, which he used to strike out Kevin Biggio, son of longtime Houston Astro great Craig Biggio and a great hitter in his own right.
Kilichowski said his father spoke to Craig Biggio after the strikeout, and he told his dad that his son had never struck out looking at three straight curve balls, adding that he could easily be a left-handed relief specialist in the big leagues.
Congratulations to John and his family from The Islander. We wish him the best of luck at his final tryout in California.
Indoor soccer action continues
Players saw another exciting week of indoor soccer at the Anna Maria Island Community Center, 407 Magnolia Ave., Anna Maria.
The 8-10 division is about as close as it can be with Beach Bistro leading the pack on a 2-1-1 record, while Lapensee Plumbing, Gettel Toyota and Beach Bums follow in a three-way tie for second place.
The 11-13 division has Eat Here on top with a 4-0 record, followed by Waterfront Restaurant and Air & Energy, in a tie for second with 1-3 records.
Air & Energy won its first game of the season July 18 when it defeated Waterfront 8-3. James Whyte led the way with six goals, while Stephen Whyte and Conal Cassidy each added a goal in the victory.
Ryan Fellowes scored two goals to lead Waterfront, which also received one goal from Robbie Fellowes in the loss.
Eat Here remained undefeated in the 11-13 division with a 5-4 July 16 victory over Waterfront. Sydney Morrow led the way with three goals, while Nika Ukhurgunasvili and Danielle Capparelli each scored one goal in the victory.
Robbie Fellowes scored two goals to lead Waterfront, which also received single goals from Morgan Burns and Ryan Fellowes in the loss.
Beach Bums defeated Gettel Toyota 6-4 during 8-10 division action July 18. Luke Marvin and Ozzie Lonzo scored two goals apiece to lead the way for Beach Bums, which also received a goal each from Didier Avila and Madelyn Rogers in the victory.
Sam Bowers scored two goals and Ava Zink and Lilah Bowers scored one goal each for Gettel.
The second 8-10 division game of the evening saw Beach Bistro roll past Lapensee Plumbing by a 10-6 score. Julius Petereit and Jayse Berzowski scored four goals each, while Thomas Fellowes and Andrew Burgess each notched single goals in the victory.
Tyler Brewer’s five goals and one goal from Chris Snyder led Lapensee in the loss.
Brewer dug the ball out of the corner and dribbled the length of the court to score the game-tying goal with 9.2 seconds remaining in a 2-2 tie between Lapensee and Gettel July 16. Ashton Pennel added the other goal for Lapensee.
Sam Bowers and Ava Zink each scored one goal to lead Gettel in the tie.
Adult flag football
Duffy’s Tavern Raiders and Agnelli Pool & Spa Dolphins continue to lead the adult coed flag football league at the Center. Both teams sport perfect 3-0 records, but that will soon change as they meet at 9 p.m. Wednesday, July 25.
Tyler’s Ice Cream Vikings and Jessie’s Island Store Jets are tied at 2-1, while Miller Electric Chargers and Sato Browns follow in the standings at 1-2. Meanwhile, Slim’s Place Titans and Beach to Bay Construction Saints are still in search of victories.
The July 19 game of the week saw Tyler’s edge Miller 41-40. Both offenses moved the ball up and down the field, scoring six touchdowns each. The difference in the game was a safety and 2 points for the Vikings 50 seconds to go in the half.
Chargers quarterback Chuck Bucky lateraled the ball to Eric Gledhill on an option play. Gledhill, looking to pass the ball, found nobody open so he spiked it to stop the clock, but he was in the Charger end zone, resulting in the safety.
Ryan Moss threw for 179 yards and four touchdown passes, while adding a 7-yard touchdown run. Jonathan Moss caught six passes for 75 yards and four touchdowns, while adding another 41 yards on the ground. Rob Alderson caught two passes for 72 yards and a touchdown, and Brent Moss added five catches for 46 yards and an extra point to round out the Viking offense.
Jonathan Moss led the defense with three flag pulls and an interception, while Caleb Roberts also contributed an interception.
Bucky completed 19-of-21 passes for 313 yards and six touchdown passes to lead the Chargers, which also received a huge game from Gledhill, who caught 10 passes for 159 yards and three touchdowns and a pair of extra points. Jordan Pritcahrd added seven catches for 127 yards and three touchdowns, while Robert Kasten finished with three catches for 27 yards, including an extra point.
Gledhill also led the defense with five flag pulls, while Matt Ray finished with four pulls in the loss.
In other center football action last week, Jessie’s opened the July 19 action by defeating Beach to Bay 26-19 behind Matt Piermarni. Piermarini completed 22 of 29 passes for 298 yards and four touchdown passes. Ian Fetters was his top target, catching 10 passes for 170 yards and a touchdown.
Larry Berkery passed for 128 yards and a touchdown to lead the Saints, which also received a 45-yard touchdown run from Shawn Kaleta in the loss
Duffy’s squeaked by Sato 12-7 thanks to an interception return for a touchdown by Kevin Gregorich and a touchdown reception by Dustin Swain. Mike Gillum and Swain also keyed the victory with interceptions.
The Browns were led by Lexi Braxton’s six catches for 41 yards and an extra point and Nick Sato’s two catches and one touchdown in the loss.
Agnelli remained undefeated with a 46-13 win over Slim’s. Frank Agnelli paced the Dolphins with six catches for 95 yards, including three touchdown receptions and a pair of extra-point catches. Brianna Shaughnessy added three catches for 42 yards and a touchdown in the victory.
Tyler Bekkerus passed for 190 yards and a pair of touchdowns, while Ben Conlon added five catches for 40 yards and a touchdown in the loss.
Sam “Six-Pack” Samuel and the team of Jerry Disbrow and Norm Good were the only teams to make it into the knock-out round during July 21 horseshoe action at the Anna Maria City Hall horseshoe pits. Samuels had his way with Disbrow and Good as he earned the day’s bragging rights with a 22-16 victory.
The July 18 games had Norm Good as the walker, proving the old adage, “if you want something done right, do it yourself.” Good rolled past the team of Jerry Disbrow and Hank Huyghe by a 21-12 score.
Play gets under way at 9 a.m. every Wednesday and Saturday at the Anna Maria City Hall pits. Warmups begin at 8:45 a.m. followed by random team selection.
There is no charge to play and everyone is welcome.
AMICC summer indoor soccer league schedule
July 30 6 p.m. Bowes Imaging vs. Southern Greens
July 25 6 p.m. Beach Bistro vs. Gettel Toyota
July 25 7 p.m. LaPensee Plumbing vs. Beach Bums
July 30 7 p.m. Gettel Toyota vs. LaPensee Plumbing
July 30 8 p.m. Waterfront vs. Air & Energy
NFL adult coed flag football schedule
July 25 6 p.m. Vikings vs. Saints
July 25 7 p.m. Browns vs. Jets
July 25 8 p.m. Chargers vs. Titans
July 25 9 p.m. Raiders vs. Dolphins
July 26 6 p.m. Vikings vs. Jets
July 26 7 p.m. Saints vs. Dolphins
July 26 8 p.m. Browns vs. Titans
July 26 9 p.m. Raiders vs. Chargers
AMICC adult coed volleyball schedule
July 31 6 p.m. Lobstah’s vs. FL Discount Signs
July 31 7 p.m. Best Buy vs. The Feast
July 31 8 p.m. Best Buy vs. The Feast