Conal Cassidy cuts back between two defenders during a recent U12 Manatee Magic game at G.T. Bray Park, Bradenton. Islander Photo: Jen Cassidy
James Richards carries the ball forward during a recent U12 Manatee Magic game at G.T. Bray Park. Islander Photo: Jen Cassidy
Morgan Burns controls the ball during a U14 Magic game played earlier in the season. Islander Photo: Courtesy of Tina Burns
Young ‘Magic’ soccer teams conjure competitive league play
Manatee Area Youth Soccer Organization’s competitive soccer program, the Manatee Magic, is just past the midway point in its season in the United Soccer League.
Magic boasts six teams, four of them in Division II, the exceptions being the U12 Magic girls in Division III and the U10 boys, for which there is no division or standings. All of the five competitive teams are having respectable seasons and sit in the middle of their standings or higher.
The U11 Magic boys, including islander Sam Bowers and Luke Marvin, who boasts island connections, are currently in fourth place with three wins, four losses and a tie.
The U12 Magic boys, coached by myself and former islander Ken Richards, is represented by former islanders Conal Cassidy and James Richards. The team is currently tied for third place with four wins, four losses and a pair of ties.
The U12 Magic girls, currently 5-2 and in third place in their division, is the only team without island ties.
The U13 boys are coached by former Island Football Club player Neil Fellowes and represented by some familiar island names, including Lane Bowers, Brennan Bowers, Nicholas Ananicz and Aiden Grumley. They are in fourth place with three wins, three losses and a tie.
The top team for the Magic both in standing and the most Islanders is the U14 Magic girls. They are in second place with four wins and three ties and only have surrendered six goals in seven matches thanks to a defense spearheaded by islanders Emma Moneuse, Grace Bowers, Morgan Burns and Danielle Capparelli. Other islanders on the squad are Brooke Capparelli, Lily Meaker, Jenna Rodgers and Olivia Glavan, while Brooke McIntosh and coach Brett McIntosh also have island ties.
Most, if not all of the players either from the island or with island connections got their start in soccer at the Anna Maria Island Community Center.
MAYSO encourages all players who want to compete at a higher level than the center’s recreational league to give the Manatee Magic a try.
The teams will be back in action after a two-week break for the holidays.
Key Royale golf news
It was another busy week on the Key Royale Club links with many risking a sunburn in the unseasonably warm December afternoons.
The action got started Dec. 7 with an 18-hole, individual-low-net golf match. Jim Thorton grabbed clubhouse bragging rights with a 4-under-par 60 to earn a four-shot victory over Jim Mixon, who was alone in second with an even-par 64.
Dec. 9 saw the men get out for both morning and afternoon rounds of golf. They played a nine-hole, two-best-balls-of-foursome match to start the day.
The team of Fred Meyer, Charlie Knopp, Al Gunn and Jim Auch, along with the team of Bill Schuman, Dennis Schavey, Ron Robinson and Ron Pritchard and last, but not least, the team of Pieter Thomassen, Gerry Taylor and Jim Vicar, all carded matching 52s to finish in a three-way tie for first place.
The afternoon saw the men play a nine-hole, modified Stableford-system match. Dan Richardson road an eagle on the first hole to a plus-8, which gave him individual honors with Quentin Talbert alone in second at plus-5.
The team of Fred Miller, Bob Lang, Gary Razze and Tom Lewis combined on a plus-7 to take the team title for the day.
The club women took to the course Dec. 10 for a nine-hole, individual-low-net golf match. Sue Little fired a 5-under-par 27 to earn a one-shot victory in Flight A over Joy Kaiser and Helen Pollock, who tied for second place at 3-under-par 28.
Flight B saw Meredith Slavin, Kris Landkammer and Barb Estok all card 3-under-par 29s to finish in a three-way tie for first.
Judy Ward’s 2-under-par 30 was good enough for a two-shot victory in Flight C. Rita Allan was alone in second place at even-par 32, while Markie Ksiazek was another shot back in third place.
Sally York had the round of the day, an 8-under-par 24 that gave her first place in Flight D. Nell Bergstrom’s 3-under-par 29 gave her second place, while Marcia O’Brien was alone in third with a 1-under-par 31.
The men were back on the course Dec. 11 for an 18-hole, two-best-balls-of-foursome match. The team of Wade LaDue, Jim Helgeson, Carl Voyles and Jim Thorton combined on a 32-under-par 96 to earn first place. Second place went to the team of Ron Pritchard, Tom Lewis and Vince Mercadante, who carded a 26-under-par 102.
The men played a nine-hole scramble Dec. 12, playing only par-3 holes. The team of Fred Miller, Randy Clark, Rich Papini and Tony Butzek matched the 3-under-par 24 carded by the team of Ken Rickett, Jerry Elson, Dick Mills and Tom Bode to finish in a tie for first place.
Friday the 13th was lucky for the team of Mary Lou Drier, Sue Little, Bob Reid and Jim Thorton, who combined on a 15-under-par 49 to win the coed, two-best-balls-of-foursome match. The team of Marylyn Thorton, Heather Blaine, Mary Lou Kaemmerlen and Barry Martin finished in second place with an 11-under-par 51.
High quality horseshoe play stood out Dec. 11 in the action at the Anna Maria City Hall pits. Four teams emerged from pool play and battled it out in semifinal games that both ended in dramatic fashion — double ringers. Paul Sheatler and Rod Bussey defeated Herb Puryear and Sam Samuels 26-18 in the first match, while John Crawford and Tim Sofran defeated Bob Mason and Dom Livedoti 24-14 in the second semifinal match.
The finals were close until Sofran ended with a six-pack, double-ringer to give he and Crawford a 25-20 win.
Dec. 14 action had two teams qualify for the knockout stage. The team of Gene Bobeldyk and Sam Samuels earned a 23-20, come-from-behind victory over the team of John Crawford and Rod Bussey to earn the day’s bragging rights.
Play gets underway 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.