Holmdel girls soccer looks to continue excellent start

first_imgBY WARREN RAPPLEYEA Staff Writer On the heels of a 10-7 campaign last fall, the youthful Holmdel High School girls soccer team is poised to contend for the Shore Conference’s Class A Central title this fall. PHOTOS BY ANDREW MILLER staff Left, Holmdel High School’s Isabelle Li (l) takes a shot on goal as St. John Vianney’s Nicole Baretta defends during Holmdel’s 3-1 victory at home. Right, SJV’s Nicole Margaritanda (center) wins a header over teammate Jackie Freeman (r) and Holmdel High School’s Angela Pento during Holmdel’s 3-1 victory at Holmdel High School. Though still early, the Hornets took a big step in that direction Friday with a solid 3-1 victory over division rival St. John Vianney. Marybeth Lesbirel scored her third and fourth goals of the season and Kayla Nelson added another goal to propel the Holmdel attack. The first tally came off a long pass from sweeper Danielle Esposito to Lesbirel, who made her way past an SJV defender before scoring. Esposito and Angela Pento, a sophomore forward, combined to set up Lesbirel’s second goal. “We generally moved the ball up the field well against SJV,” Hornets coach Jennifer Conroy said. “The real difference was in the second half when the girls took control of the game. Our girls wanted the game and it showed because they won the bulk of the battles for the 50-50 balls.” The win improved Holmdel’s overall record to 3-0 (2-0 in conference), with the other successes coming against Manasquan, 3-2 in a game that saw Holmdel down 2-0; and Red Bank Regional, 3-0. Conroy’s team can solidify its position this week as it has home games against Raritan, scheduled for Monday, and tomorrow against Red Bank Catholic. The Hornets showed much promise a year ago, downing Middletown South in the first round of the NJSIAA Central Jersey Group III tourney before bowing to Morristown in the second round. Holmdel also reached the second round of the Shore Conference Tournament, where they lost a 1-0 heartbreaker to Freehold Borough, after downing Toms River North in the opening round. Conroy’s team boasts a strong balance between experienced seniors and talented underclassmen. Lesbirel, who scored 11 times a year ago, sets the tone up front, with Esposito and Kim Fiorentino in the middle. Katie O’Neill and Jackie Oren are on the backline. Another key is the presence of junior Isabelle Li in the middle. A three-year starter, Li is calm and quick with the ball and is rarely caught out of position. “Those girls all work well together and they’re unselfish so they set a good example for the younger girls,” Conroy explained. “You can’t underestimate the importance of having good senior leadership.” In addition, the Hornets have a cadre of sophomores, including Pento who has two goals and three assists after posting nine markers as a freshman. Stephanie DeSousa and Rebecca Galaraza shuttle between fore and midfield, and Nelson is a midfielder. Lindsay Ippolito and twins Alexa and Jamie Martinez are all solid defenders. Holmdel is solid in goal with freshman Sara Killough, who made eight saves to help secure the triumph against SJV, and sophomore Liz Keenan. In reserve are seniors Jessica Alvino, Christina Cianci, Alexis Vergas, Gloria Wu and Gianna Zito, along with junior Paula Lobaccaro and sophomore Gulia Picascia. “We wanted to get off to a good start; now we just have to keep the momentum going and not get ahead of ourselves because we’re in a tough conference,” Conroy said.last_img read more

10 questions with Woman Grandmaster Qiyu Zhou

first_imgOnce in a while, we get the chance to spend time with a young person who truly inspires us to be and do more. One such young lady is 17-year-old Qiyu Zhou, the reigning Canadian Women’s Chess Champion. She also holds the titles of Woman Grandmaster (WGM) and FIDE Master (FM). Qiyu arrives in Jamaica this week to participate in the first-ever Jamaica International Chess Festival to be held in Kingston from Oct 13-15. While here, Qiyu, along with three other International Youth Grandmasters, will visit schools, give a motivational talk, and play against local youth in the grand finale Chess tournament. We had a chat with Qiyu as she prepares to come to Jamaica. Of all the chess titles you have won, which is your most memorable and why? The World Youth Chess Championships in South Africa when I won the gold medal in 2014, for sure, was my most memorable one. It was quite, literally, a dream come true because I’ve had that goal since I was about five. Just the feeling of being on the stage and standing on the podium with a gold medal – it’s a pretty good feeling. What is it about chess that you love? I really like the competitiveness factor of chess. I am a very competitive person, and I need somewhere to put all this energy. I think chess is perfect for this because I can direct my attention when I want to. My passion for chess lies in all the things that chess brings to me. It’s a lot about the outside factors of the game – the friends I’ve made and the number of opportunities it has given me. I’ve been able to travel to so many places, and if I didn’t play chess, I would never have gone to South Africa or Iran or half of these countries that I have been to. How do you prepare for a chess match, and what do you do to keep your focus when playing? I usually look over my opponents’ games and then think about what I’m going to do. But outside of chess, I do a lot of exercise and eat well. I eat a lot, actually. And I sleep considerably more during chess tournaments than I do during regular school time. When I’m playing, I keep thinking, “I really want to win this”, so my mind is on the game. It’s sometimes really difficult to keep your focus because the games last a long time. So I drink a lot of water and I walk a lot. I wonder around the halls. It helps to keep my mind fresh. Do you prefer to play long or short games? I like to play all types of chess. I don’t really have a preference. It really depends on the occasion. With friends, of course, I prefer to play Blitz Chess, but in tournaments, I would rather play long games. I don’t play Blitz or Rapid Chess tournaments very often. Were you surprised by your invitation to Jamaica, and what are you most looking forward to about your visit? Yeah! I was very, very excited! I’m very excited to see the country. It’s my first time in the Caribbean, and from what I’ve heard, the place is amazing, and, of course, it’s warm there. And just the whole Caribbean mindset. So, it’s going to be a really neat experience. I’m most looking forward to being able to experience the culture of Jamaica. As a youth champion, how do you hope to inspire the children you will meet in Jamaica? I’m very excited to be able to give speeches and to teach the local youth about chess and show them what it means to play chess. I really want to encourage them to chase their dreams. It doesn’t have to be as a world chess champion, but to give them the idea that if they want to do something, they can do it if they put in the effort and put their minds to it and really focus – to give their lives purpose. Many may argue that competitive chess is not a sport. Do you agree or disagree with this and why? I’ve debated this topic with many people, but for me, chess is a sport because I’m playing this game to win! I want to win. I want to be the best at what I do. I put a lot of energy into it and I try hard. So just as any runner would have a strategy on how to run his race, I have to approach chess in the same way. Chess is surprisingly very tiring. In a previous interview you mentioned that you wanted to be an ambassador. If you were to become one today, what world issue would you seek to address? I really want to address the disparity between the rich and poor. I’ve travelled a lot and seen a lot of different aspects of the world. For example, in South Africa, I was staying in a very fancy hotel on the coast with beautiful beaches, and then there were quite a few beggars there as well. It was a very stark contrast to my own circumstances. So I want to address what causes these problems. I want to do something that matters. Qiyu wants to study economics and, hopefully, follow her dreams of attending Harvard University after high school. She dreams of making a real difference in the world, living by her personal motto: “If you try really hard, and if you work for it, you’ll probably get there.” For more information about Qiyu Zhou and the Jamaica International Chess Festival, please visit www.jamaicachessfestival.com.last_img read more

‘Johnnie Was a Good Man’

first_img“As Bob Marley wrote in one of his songs,” said Episcopal Archbishop Jonathan B. B. Hart at a moment during the funeral discourse of the late Liberian Chief Justice, Johnnie N. Lewis, “Johnnie was a good man. He (Johnnie) served his church, the Episcopal Church of Liberia, and his country with dedication and commitment in the diligence of duty.”And as if to extend the concepts of service and commitment, the Archbishop quoted William Shakespeare, the English playwright, saying, “Life is a stage and we all are actors. We come on stage, play our parts and then exit.”He noted that this concept also applies to all public servants and government officials, whether appointed by the President or elected by the people, they are only there for an appointed time, thereby urging them to do their very best and leave a legacy when they exit.“It (a government job) is not your farm or private property. We are to use our positions to serve God’s people and not to mistreat and overlook them. Instead of being the servants, we become small gods. These positions are not meant for eternity,” he told a congregation comprising many top officials from all three branches government, the diplomatic corps, civil society leaders and people from the general public.Delivering the funeral discourse on the theme, “Time is up”, Archbishop Hart preached from the Old Testament book of Ecclesiastes 3:1-15, in which King Solomon examines the brevity of life. “Everything that happens in this world happens at a time God chooses.” Solomon then proceeds to illustrate and demonstrate his thesis, “There is time for everything.”“The key word here is time,” Archbishop Hart noted, “and this is used thirty times in Ecclesiastes 3:1-8. The first pair of contrasts, birth and death, sets the parameters for the events that follow.  In the fullness of time, Bro. Lewis was born in 1946 and died on January 21, 2015. God has an eternal plan that includes the purposes and activities of every person on earth.“Time is everything,” he said.  “Time is essential when dealing with people. For the business people we hear them say, ‘Time na money.’ Time is important in finance and investment.  This should be evidence to us.”Archbishop Hart described the late Chief Justice as a man of impeccable character, who brought pride and dignity to the Supreme Court, yea the Judiciary.  President Sirleaf, in her panegyric, had earlier described the Late Chief Justice as a Patriot.“I recalled once in the print media [that] during his birthday, a long time friend decided to present Cllr. Lewis a gift of booze (12 years old Dewar’s Whisky)”, the Archbishop narrated, “and his friend was jailed because Bro. Lewis thought it was a bribe.  How many Johnnies will we have in Liberia? Bro. Lewis stood tall and firm on issues that concern the welfare of the state. We all are old enough to remember the old impoundment lot used by the Liberian National Police.  As a property lawyer, Cllr. Lewis found the deed for the Government land up Capitol Hill and proved that the piece of property was for the Judiciary and, when the Police could not disprove it, he built what we now know as a new Annex to the Temple of Justice Complex.  When God puts us in positions of trust, He expects us to be firm in making and implementing decisions.  Sometimes a few of our friends may get hurt by those decisions and actions.  In the end we will be doing good for all God’s people,” Archbishop Hart said.The late Chief Justice is credited for reforming the Judiciary and ruling in cases that have been labeled ‘landmark’. As Professor of Law and Dean of the Louis Arthur Grimes School of Law, he taught Criminal Law, Criminal Procedure and Estates and Trusts, amongst other courses.  He executed a complete renovation of the Temple of Justice and during his time built new court houses in various jurisdictions.One of the most impressive Court edifices built during his tenure is the 16th Judicial Circuit Court in Gbarpolu County.Paying tribute on behalf of the Liberian Judiciary, Associate Justice Cllr. Phillip A. Z. Banks presented a very vivid picture of the late Chief Justice at the funeral.  “Johnnie Lewis served as Judge at the 3rd Judicial Circuit in Greenville, Sinoe County. Liberia has lost a legal luminary, an astute lawyer and statesman; a no-nonsense judge. You must be adequately prepared to stand before him as a lawyer. He will be missed,” he said.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Karen Country Club to host ‘The Fistula Golf Challenge’ Friday

first_img0Shares0000The Fistula Challenge Golf Tournament will be held on Friday at the Karen Country Club. Photo/COURTESYNAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 22 – The Karen Country Club will on Friday host a charity golf tournament dubbed ‘The Fistula Challenge’.The tournament is sponsored by the British Chamber of Commerce (BCCK), Rotary Clubs of Kenya and Amref Health Africa who are seeking to raise over  Sh5mn for reconstructive surgery for women suffering from fistula complications. Meshack Ndirangu, Country Director, Amref health Africa in Kenya said proceeds from the golf tournament will be channeled towards free surgeries to restoring dignity to women suffering from fistula.“All proceeds from the charity Golf tournament will directly support Amref Health Africa Fistula programme which aims to improve the quality of life for women with debilitating childbirth injuries through surgical interventions and community interventions to prevent Obstetric Fistula,” Ndirangu said.The Rotary Club of Nairobi Industrial Area, Rotary Club of Karen, Rotary club of Muthaiga North, Rotary Club of Hurlingham and the Rotary club of Parklands are some of the clubs which have confirmed participation in the tournament.The tournament has attracted 160 golf players and at least 30 Corporate Sponsors. The District Governor Elect, Rotarian Jeff Bamford and BCCK Chair, Mr. Graham Shaw are expected to participate in the tournament.It is estimated that over 3,000 women each year in Kenya experience obstetric fistula, a hole in the birth canal caused by obstructed or prolonged labour and lack of access to skilled health care. Obstetric fistula is a debilitating condition, often causing women to feel ashamed.Amref Health Africa’s Obstetric Fistula programme, established in 1992, aims at improving the quality of life for women with debilitating childbirth injuries through surgical interventions and community interventions to prevent Obstetric Fistula.0Shares0000(Visited 7 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more

United sign former Barca keeper Valdes

first_img0Shares0000LONDON, January 8 – Manchester United signed former Barcelona goalkeeper Victor Valdes on an 18-month contract on Thursday. Valdes left Barcelona, where he had spent his entire career, at the end of last season and has been training with United since October as he recovers from an anterior cruciate ligament injury suffered last March.The deal, which includes an option to extend Valdes’ stay at Old Trafford for an extra year, reunites the 32-year-old with Louis van Gaal, United’s Dutch manager, who gave the Spaniard his debut during his second spell as coach of Barcelona.“It is a real honour to sign for Manchester United,” Valdes told United’s official website.“I would like to thank Louis van Gaal and the club for allowing me to do my rehabilitation and to train with the team.“From my short time here I can already see this is a very special club.“I worked with Louis van Gaal during my time at FC Barcelona and to have the opportunity to work with him here at Manchester United is a dream come true.”Valdes won six league titles, three Champions Leagues and two Copa del Rey crowns during his time at Barcelona, while he was a member of the Spain squad that won the World Cup in 2010 and the 2012 European Championship.He is expected to provide cover for his compatriot David de Gea, United’s first-choice goalkeeper, who has earned plaudits for some stunning performances this season.“I am delighted Victor has signed for the club. Victor is a very experienced goalkeeper and his record speaks for itself,” van Gaal said.“I have said on many occasions that Manchester United will always be interested in the best players.“Victor has remained very professional throughout his rehabilitation from injury and has been very impressive during his training sessions with the first team over the past weeks.“He joins the club as the number two goalkeeper and is a great addition to the first team.”United’s other goalkeepers are Denmark international Anders Lindegaard, Ben Amos and Sam Johnstone, who is currently on loan at second-division Doncaster.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more

Exclusive – Hazard in ‘same bracket’ as Messi and Ronaldo, claims Chelsea team-mate Cahill

first_imgGary Cahill believes Chelsea team-mate Eden Hazard is in the same bracket as Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.The Blues flyer has been in superb form this season and has helped the west London club to the top of the Premier League table, along with securing a Champions League last-16 place.And Cahill claims the Belgian has all the required skills to emulate the La Liga pair, commonly refered to as the two best players in the world.“Eden certainly can go to the same level as Messi and Ronaldo,” he told talkSPORT. “I haven’t obviously played with either, but I’ve seen a lot of them. Training and playing with Eden has shown me he’s certainly in the same bracket.“He’s still such a young lad, but he’s devastating at times when he gets the ball at his feet and runs at defenders.“There aren’t many better than him. I’m sure he’ll keep improving, he’s already got better from last year to this season.”last_img read more

Wayne Rooney is a true ‘great’ and can win Man United the derby, says Red Devils legend

first_imgSteve Bruce has launched a passionate defence of Wayne Rooney, insisting the Manchester United captain is far from finished.Rooney has come in for criticism over his form this season and many fans feel his best days may be behind him.Bruce, however, has nothing but praise for the 29-year-old, claiming he is the ultimate team player.And he is backing Rooney to shut up the critics as he prepares to lead United against rivals City in Sunday’s Manchester derby.The legendary former United defender told talkSPORT: “There can’t even been a question of what he has achieved and what he is going to go on to achieve. “Wayne suffers a little bit from being the great team player he is. He can play wide on the left, he has played off the front, he plays as a centre-forward, he plays as a midfield player. That is his greatest strength. He is one of the greats we talk about. “Even his poor game or his average game he always gives you everything he has got. He is a fantastic team player and he has been the outstanding English player for the last ten years. “He has got to deal with getting a bit older but I still think there is a load in the tank.“At the moment he is going through one of those spells but he is a fantastic player and one that can win a derby, that’s for sure.”talkSPORT has live and exclusive national radio coverage of Manchester United v Manchester City on Sunday, kick-off 14:05last_img read more

NASA to release results of airline-safety survey

first_imgThe results of an $11.3 million national survey of pilots will finally be released by NASA on Monday, two months after federal officials said the report could upset passenger confidence and damage airline profits. The study is a compilation of nearly four years of telephone surveys with about 29,000 commercial and private pilots who were asked to discuss situations that could have led to crashes in the air and on runways at the nation’s airports. Pilots also discussed instances in which air traffic controllers changed landing instructions at the last minute. NASA suspended the survey last year when the agency shut down its National Aviation Operations Monitoring Service. NASA initially refused to disclose the findings to The Associated Press, which had unsuccessfully tried to obtain the report under the Freedom of Information Act for more than a year. The NASA report comes on the heels of a congressional study released earlier this month that found the nation’s airports continue to run a “high risk” of runway incursions, due to a combination of technical problems, poor federal leadership and overworked air traffic controllers. FAA officials on Friday were quick to point out that NASA’s methods in collecting the data were vastly different. Runway incursions are typically reported by controllers and supervisors working in the control tower, while midair close calls between planes are reported by the pilots to the FAA. Conversely, NASA conducted telephone interviews with pilots, inquiring whether they had “collided or nearly collided” with another aircraft, according to Peggy Gilligan, the FAA’s deputy associate administrator for aviation safety. “We collect hard data, while the NASA study is based on pilot perception,” Gilligan said. “They may give the best answer to their knowledge, but it might not be the way the FAA collects data.” Additionally, Gilligan said that pilots may not be aware of the final outcome of “perceived problems” experienced midair or on the runways. Gilligan said that NASA’s year-old findings may be slightly outdated, but the agency’s report will be compared with other safety information collected by the FAA. “I think when we combine it with a number of other databases, it’s just another data point,” Gilligan said. “This will be another data source. Now we must find a way to merge that data source.” art.marroquin@dailybreeze.com160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! In a letter to the AP, NASA officials said in October that the report could damage public confidence in the airline industry and sink airline profits. The agency reversed itself on Oct. 31, when NASA Administrator Michael Griffin said that some of the results would be released before the end of the year. “Griffin said we would have to release this by New Year’s, and that’s exactly what we’re doing,” said J.D. Harrington, a NASA spokesman. “We’ve been going through the report very diligently to make sure it does not identify any of the pilots and has no commercial information that will hurt anyone,” Harrington said. “It’s taken a while already, but we’ll keep working on it through the weekend.” The report is expected to reveal that runway incursions, midair “close calls” and bird strikes occur more frequently than previously recognized by the Federal Aviation Administration, the agency that tracks such data. Nine runway incursions have been reported at Los Angeles International Airport since Jan. 1, according to the FAA and airport officials. last_img read more

Safe and sound

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORESurfer attacked by shark near Channel Islands calls rescue a ‘Christmas miracle’Admittedly, the first few days of the line’s debut seemed to bear out Alarc n’s warning about safety. But MTA officials correctly attributed early crashes to drivers getting used to the new detours and crossing lights. Indeed, the busway is now considered by transit officials to be the system’s safest bus line. Despite one recent accident, it’s still safer than the light-rail line between downtown L.A. and Long Beach. Now, as the Valley celebrates the first anniversary of the long-anticipated busway, it’s important that transit officials capitalize on the popularity of public transportation by Vals, and not spend all their attention on the billion-dollar boondoggles over the hill. The Chatsworth extension of the line must be a priority. And it’s imperative that north-south busways are built to connect with the Orange Line through the heart of the Valley along a corridor in the East Valley. The first year surpassed all expectations. There’s no reason the second year can’t as well. BEFORE the San Fernando Valley’s Orange Line busway opened to great fanfare a year ago today, a lot of predictions were made about how it would fare. Transportation officials thought it would take 15 years for the busway to attract 20,000 riders a day in this car-loving culture. Metropolitan Transportation Authority officials anticipated 5,000 to 7,000 boardings a day. State Sen. Richard Alarc n predicted death and destruction, because the bus was “unsafe at any speed.” The predictions were way, way off. And what’s clear is that the Orange Line is safer and more sound than anyone could have imagined when the $350 million project was first unveiled. Within the first few days, rider estimates were blown out of the water with 11,000 daily boardings. Soaring fuel prices kept people from returning to their cars once the allure of the bus commute wore off. Now, an average of 21,000 people board the sleek silver buses every day. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

Killed in Iraq, local patriot knew danger but enlisted

first_imgIn Nicholas “Nick” Steinbacher’s last e-mail from Iraq on Dec. 9, the soldier who had just turned 22 told his family he was feeling great and was excited to be in Iraq. Steinbacher, an Army specialist who grew up in La Crescenta, had celebrated his birthday the previous day. He had been in Iraq just six weeks. “Nick told his guys (Army buddies), `If I wasn’t happy, I wouldn’t be here,”‘ Steinbacher’s older brother, Daniel, 23, said. A day after the soldier sent the e-mail, he was traveling in a Humvee caravan patrolling a section of Baghdad when the unit ran into roadside bombs. Steinbacher – his family was notified this week – died in that attack. Just a few credits shy of his Associate of Arts degree from College of the Canyons, Nicholas Steinbacher enlisted in the Army. He did his basic training at Fort Bragg, Ga., and infantry training at Fort Hood, Texas, where he was stationed until his deployment. “Nick had enlisted in special-forces training,” his older brother said, “but during airborne training he’d broken a leg on his first jump, and that had taken him out of special forces and got him into infantry. “But he loved doing what he was doing. He had gotten a military package. He was going to have money to go to college, and he had the G.I. Bill, and he saw it as a way to prepare to be a police officer if that’s what he wanted to do.” His family was nervous when he was heading to war-torn Iraq, but he knew his mother and brothers – Daniel and Kirk, 18 – could draw on experience in coping with anxiety about a loved one’s work. “My dad (Paul) is a Los Angeles firefighter,” Daniel Steinbacher said. “We’re used to dealing with a certain level of stress just from that. “But the more nervous we got for Nick, as time for him to go got near, the more excited he got. He was proud to be going.” News of the death quickly circulated in the tightly knit La Crescenta community. “We’re extremely lucky to have the support of our community, the high school, our family, friends and the firefighter community,” Daniel Steinbacher said as he cherished memories of his brother, who “loved fishing and the outdoors,” having fun. “We camped out a lot growing up, and that’s what he loved to do. He loved to fish with his grandfather and with his buddies. “Mom had said to him that, being where he was, he might want to take advantage of some of the fishing. … But he said, `No, I want to come home and fish with my buddies.”‘ Funeral services are pending. The death has not shaken confidence among Nicholas’ family and friends that he was glad he enlisted, Daniel said. “Nick’s heroes were George Bush and Bill O’Reilly,” Daniel said. “He didn’t discount the fact that he might re-enlist and possibly make the military a career.” tony.castro@dailynews.com (818) 713-3761160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORESurfer attacked by shark near Channel Islands calls rescue a ‘Christmas miracle’On Wednesday, as his parents busied themselves with the logistics of having their son’s body returned home, Daniel Steinbacher eulogized his brother as a modern American patriot willing to pay the ultimate price for his country. “He was proud to go to Iraq,” Daniel Steinbacher said. “Nick couldn’t stand being on the outside of the action. He didn’t like the idea of somebody else doing something that he could be doing, too. He thought there was a job to do over there and that it was his duty to do it.” Had it been up to Nicholas Steinbacher, he would have enlisted right after graduation from Crescenta Valley High School, where he had lettered in football four years and been the starting center his senior year, his brother said. “Nick wanted to be a police officer and had scored really high on his military-aptitude tests and was getting all kinds of (military) recruiting letters, but our parents persuaded him to go to college for a couple of years,” Daniel Steinbacher said. “He truly lived life in the moment,” his mother, Carolyn Steinbacher, said. last_img