St. Francis Classic Warms Up Basketball Courts
By Keith Goldberg and
The weather has been heating up and so has the action at the St. Francis Summer Classic. This year’s edition, the 21st, is one of the biggest Classics ever with 88 teams in 12 divisions, and approximately 1000 participants. Rain in late June and early July threatened to disrupt the schedule, but games have been made up and the regular season is nearly complete.
The Graybeards division held the first championship this Thursday. Orange and Green survived the Season of Attrition to battle it out for the title. Commissioner Kevin Lunny did a fine job adjusting rosters that resembled the Yankee pitching rotation. The Women’s Open League sprouted a new B division under the direction of Kelli Donohue. Play has been spirited with longtime favorites coming out of retirement to draw large crowds to the gym on Tuesdays. All four teams had even records heading into the regular season finale. Semifinals are Tuesday August 2 and the Championship Thursday August 4.
The Women’s A division narrowed to 5 competitive squads. Kenny Whelan has done a fine job and it has been a pleasure to witness the reunion of Clare Droesch, Janelle McManus, and Tricia Tubridy with DJ’s@Work. Semifinals are Monday August 1 and the Championship Wednesday August 3. Both Womens’ Championships will be preceded by the start of Girls High School play that will run through August.
Tom Morgan and Jim Moriarty have done a wonderful job with the co-ed 2nd grade league in the gym. One week remains in the season. Although no score is kept, the kids are learning, and will be ready for their first CYO experience in the fall. Everyone goes home a winner. Score is kept for the Boys Grammar Junior and Girls Grammar Junior divisions, but there are no playoffs or standings. There are 10 teams in each division and one week of games remaining. Keith Goldberg handles the boys while Ronald Whelan and Elaine Scotto guide the girls.
The Boys Grammar Middle division also consists of 10 teams. The season ended with a three way tie for first place among Belle Harbor Chemists, Design Tech Construction and Sands Point Physical Therapy. Playoffs began on Tuesday with TAG Maintenance ousting Lawrence Pharmacy and Rockaway Little League edging Baily’s Construction. Quarterfinals followed on Wednesday. Semifinals are Wednesday August 3 and the Championship Tuesday August 9. Jeff Mercer and Dan Donohue have done a terrific job with this group.
Walsh Properties enters the Girls Grammar Senior playoffs as the top seed with 6 other teams in pursuit. Quarterfinals are Monday August 1, Semifinals Tuesday August 2 and the Championship Wednesday August 3. Kudos goes to Commissioner Jay Boyle.
The Boys Grammar Senior 10 team division finished regular season play on Wednesday. Commissioner Ray Corrigan’s playoff schedule has games August 1,2,3,8, and 9 (Championship). Boys High School guru Dan Edwards predicts exciting playoffs with quarterfinals on August 3, semifinals August 8 and Championship August 9.
Frank Dima heads a staff that includes Tommy French and Brian McKeon. Not enough can be said of the job they do night in and night out, setting up and breaking down, coordinating referees, timers, and scorers, operating the concession stand and maintaining the wonderful atmosphere that makes the Classic a community jewel. Don’t miss the action at the St. Francis Summer Classic.