Dog days of summer set in
|Martine Miller, Molly McDonough, Kelly Guerin, Ashley Waring, Sarah Howard, Coach Ron McDonough, Emma Barlow, Emma Fridenberg and Ally Titsworth pose with their first-place trophies outside the G.T. Bray Park gymnasium. Islander Photo: Courtesy Keith Dearlove
Summer hit Anna Maria Island this weekend. No, not the actual date of summer, or the real dog days of August, but the sweltering heat that drives the Geyers to turn on the air conditioning at Duffy's Tavern.
Along with the stifling heat comes the end to easily finding sporting events to cover for this weekly column, (much to my publisher's chagrin). It's just kind of hard writing a story about going to the beach for a swim, though photography at the beach wouldn't be all that bad from my perspective.
The big story right now (as I'm writing this Monday morning) is the Stanley Cup playoffs where the Tampa Bay Lightning are playing game seven against the Calgary Flames. When you're reading this on Wednesday, the members of the Lightning will be taking turns taking Lord Stanley's Cup home, as is the custom.
And, also by Wednesday, I should be fully recovered from what I think will be the greatest sporting moment that I, along with friends Brett McIntosh, Bill Romberger and Lance Bieker have had the pleasure to experience. Look for a report on the game and our experiences at the finals (yes, we have tickets!) in next week's column.
Lady Spartans bring basketball title to Island
The Lady Spartans defeated the Lady Wildcats 26-24 on Monday, May 24, to win the girls' 8-9-10 division basketball championship at G.T. Bray Recreation Center in Bradenton. The Spartans were pretty much an all-Island team, with Emma Fridenberg the lone Bradenton team member. Islanders on the team were Ally Titsworth, Kelly Guerin, Emma Barlow, Hailey Dearlove, Molly McDonough, Ashley Waring and Martine Miller.
The Lady Spartans dominated in going through the entire regular season and playoffs with a perfect 10-0 record, outscoring their opponents by a 277-105 margin.
In the championship game against the Wildcats, the Lady Spartans jumped on top early and led 16-8 at the half. The Lady Wildcats battled back in the third period, outscoring the Spartans 12-10 to pull to within 26-20. The Lady Spartans were unable to add to their lead in the pivotal fourth period, but hung on to win by two points.
Balanced scoring carried the Lady Spartans as eight of the nine team members scored at least two points, with six points each from Ally Titsworth and Emma Barlow. Ashley Waring added four points, while Sarah Howard, Emma Fridenberg, Hailey Dearlove, Molly McDonough and Martine Miller each finished with two points.
The Lady Wildcats were led by Jessica Fischer's 14 points and seven points from Sienna Bonner. Alexis Reback added two points, while Sadie Montanus finished with one point in the loss.
Lady Spartans 30, Renee 5
The Lady Spartans over-exposed Photography by Renee with a 25-point victory in the first-round playoff game Wednesday, May 19, behind nine points from Emma Barlow. Molly McDonough, Ashley Waring and Sarah Howard each scored four points for the Spartans, which also received two points apiece from Ally Titsworth and Martine Miller in the victory.
Sarah Schields led the Photogs with three points, while Hannah Welch added two points in the loss.
Meet the Center's new athletic director
If you're considering signing up your child for whiffle ball, soccer or basketball, then you are going to get to talk to Andy Jonatzke, the new athletic director at the Anna Maria Island Community Center.
Jonatzke's been on the job as athletic director since March when he replaced Joe Chlebus, who married and left the Center to move to Illinois. Jonatzke hopes to improve upon the already-established sports like soccer, baseball and basketball, while also introducing Island youth to other sporting activities like hockey and ultimate Frisbee.
Jonatzke, 22, was born and raised in Niles, Mich., where he lived until he was 18 years old. From there it was off to Tri State University in Angola, Ind. After two years there, Jonatzke moved to Bradenton to help care for his mother, who suffers from Adison's Disease.
Jonatzke is a recent newlywed and, along with wife April, they are expecting their first child sometime in August.
Whiffle ball returns
The third-annual Island Whiffle Ball League is starting Tuesday, July 6, and continues until Friday, Aug. 6 in three age divisions. Players ages 8-10, 11-13 and 14-17 will compete inside the Center's air-conditioned gym.
You can sign up an entire team or as an individual at a reasonable cost of $20 per player, which includes a team T-shirt. All teams are guaranteed at least 10 games and a championship tournament.
For more information, call the center at 778-1908, or stop by to sign up in person.
Skimboard contest set for August
The third-annual EZ Skimmers Back-to-School Skimboarding Contest is now accepting applications for the extremely popular event which will take place Aug. 21-22 at the Beach House Restaurant in Bradenton Beach.
If you haven't had the pleasure to attend, you're missing out on some serious good times. Last year the contest drew more than 125 contestants, creating a fantastic atmosphere with good boarding by skimmers of all ages along with some interesting commentary, good music and a nice beach view.
Cost for the contest is $25 for an amateur and $75 for professional boarders, with each contestant receiving an EZ Skimmers T-shirt and a grab-bag filled with skimboarding essentials. Age groups range from the Minis (8 and under) up to the Masters (25 and up) in male/female divisions.
EZ Skimmers is also looking for sponsors for the two-day event which already boasts the Beach House, West Coast Surf Shop, ZAP Skimmers, Native Rentals, Fun & Sun Parasail, Sticky Bumps, Block Surf, Skim East, Australian Gold, Oakley, NXTC Surfboards, Timesaver Convenience Store, Skinny's, Dakine, Skim USA and The Islander as sponsors.
Get on board for the most exciting event of the summer!
Registration forms may be obtained at West Coast Surf Shop, 3902 Gulf Drive, or The Islander office, 5404 Marina Drive, both in Holmes Beach. Completed forms and the entry fee should be mailed or delivered to the Beach House Restaurant, P.O. Box 1478, Anna Maria FL 34216. Checks should be made payable to the Beach House.
For more information, call West Coast Surf Shop at 778-1001.