Staff Writer Defending champions Titus Mungi and Catherine N’bereba will return to Red Bank to lead a field of more than 3,500 runners in the George Sheehan Classic on Saturday. Another 500-600 people will participate in a variety of other events that begin Friday evening with the Kids Classic, a variety of short races for children ages 4-13, race director Bob Rosa said. In addition to the five-miler, the weekend includes a wheelchair race and a two-mile health and fitness walk. Last year’s race was nearly postponed because of heavy rains that caused flooding along the course. A Herculean effort by Bob Rosa and other members of the race committee resulted in some last-minute course adjustments that allowed the race to go on, albeit at just over 4.9 miles. The last-minute downpour put a dent in walk-up registrations, and just under 3,000 runners competed in the five-miler. “I did order good weather this time,” Rosa joked. “So far our numbers are good, and we’ll be taking registrations right up until race time.” This year, for the first time, participants will be timed by computer chip, Rosa noted. All runners will be issued a chip that they must wear on their ankle. This will enable each runner to get an accurate time based on the time they actually cross the start and finish lines. Runners must pick up their chips at the race registration tent in Marine Park beginning on Friday from 2 to 9 p.m. and on race morning beginning at 6:30 a.m. Chips will be collected at the finish line. Race organizers have also brought back the Friday night pasta dinner, which will be held beginning at 5:30 p.m. in Marine Park. Tickets are $8 for adults and $4 for kids and may be purchased at the door. A free concert sponsored by the Jersey Shore Jazz & Blues Foundation also will be held Friday in the park, beginning at 6 p.m. Rosa said that a minimum of $1 per runner will be donated to the Family Health Clinic of Red Bank, a free medical treatment facility for people without health insurance. The five-mile course remains the same for the fifth straight year (barring inclement weather), starting and ending on Broad Street and meandering through the neighboring towns of Fair Haven and Little Silver. It also includes an out-and-back aspect along Harding Road. Between miles three and four, the course winds through the residential side streets of Fair Haven. Just past the four-mile mark, runners get to climb Tower Hill, but it’s downhill on the other side and relatively flat from there to the finish. Mungi won the men’s race in 23:05, while fellow Kenyan N’bereba was the first woman to cross the finish line with a time of 26:27. Several other world-class runners will be on hand as well. On the men’s side competitors include Gabriel Muchiri and John Korir, who finished second and fourth, respectively, in the Sheehan last summer, and Johnson Muiruri, who finished second in the recent Crescent City Classic in New Orleans. All are from Kenya. Top women include Kenyan Kim Saddic, who won the Sheehan three years ago and finished fourth last year; Catherine Nbereba, who won the Boston Marathon for the second time in April and who is a member of the Kenyan Olympic team; and three-time U.S. Olympian Ann Marie Lauck, who will be running in the Sheehan for the first time. Although the presence of elite athletes lends an air of importance to the event, the Classic is primarily a local race. More than half the field comes from the surrounding communities in Monmouth, Middlesex and Ocean counties, Rosa noted. “We get a lot of support from runners in the area, but we do get a fair number of runners from other parts of the state and New York and Pennsylvania,” Rosa said. “And the three towns along the route have been great,” he said. “We could never have a race this size without their help.” The Kids Classic will begin at 6 p.m. on Aug. 11. A five-mile wheelchair race will start at 8:25 a.m. The five-mile Classic begins at 8:30 a.m. with the Health & Fitness Walk following at 8:40 a.m. Other activities include a Runners Expo in Marine Park from 2 to 9 p.m. on Friday and from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday. Admission is free. Entries for the five-miler are $25. Entries for the fitness walk and Kids Classic are $16. For more information, call (732) 988-7725 or visit www.sheehanclassic.org. Race results will be posted on the site after 6 p.m. on Saturday. The site also includes a schedule and description of the events, race registration information, detailed course maps, hotel information and directions. By WARREN RAPPLEYEA
By Warren RappleyeaStaff Writer Red Raiders are young but off to a solid start By Warren Rappleyea Staff Writer With just three seniors, the Keyport High School wrestling team is looking at this season with an eye to the future. “We’re very young,” said coach Al Smith. “Our goal is to try and pick up some wins and to become a better team by the end of the year.” The Red Raiders got off to a good start by downing St. Rose in its first dual match of the campaign. Keyport was slated to host Point Pleasant Beach yesterday and Cardinal McCarrick on Saturday. Smith’s team also participated in holiday tourneys in Matawan and Holmdel. Keyport’s top competitors include seniors Brian Sims (119 pounds), Al Kester (125) and Ray Siegmund (heavyweight), as well as junior Bill Jensen (160) and sophomore Dave Metz (152). Sims, 22-3 a year ago, has not competed as yet due to a fractured ankle. He’s expected back for the Cardinal McCarrick match. Kester, who picked up 15 wins a year ago, is also out, but should be back by mid January, Smith said. Siegmund, who won 10 times last season, is off to a 3-1 start. Jensen and Metz, both of whom picked up seven wins last winter, have started slowly going 1-4 and 2-4, respectively. A pair of junior newcomers, Carmine Annunazatta (171) and Pat DeNardo (215), are both 3-2 in the early going, and freshman Chris Jensen (125) is 3-3, while sophomore Ilit Ivonov (145) owns a 2-1 mark. Several promising freshmen round out the team. They are Luis Arrufat (119), Dan Cornell (103), John Dorsey (HW), Bob Fox (140), James Henning (145), Joe Martisch (119/125) and James Schmidt (112). Smith noted that he expects Sims, Kester and Siegmund, as well as a few other wrestlers, to make their marks in the District 21 tournament. “We have a lot of potential, but not a lot of experience,” said Smith, whose team finished at 3-12 last year. “Several of our guys will be learning as they go and that can be tough. Our goal is to improve with every practice and match, do the best we can, and to prepare for next year.”
Parade Magazine officially released its 32nd All-America team on Sunday in newspapers across the country. Rutgers women’s basketball saw its five incoming freshmen land on the first three squads. April Sykes (Crawford, Miss.) was named to the first team after averaging 25.5 points, 10.6 rebounds and 3.3 assists for East Oktibbeha High School this past season. Joining Sykes on the first team was Jasmine Dixon (Long Beach, Calif.). Dixon averaged 14.5 points and 10.4 rebounds per game this season for Long Beach Poly, winner of the California Division I State title. Brooklyn Pope, starring for Dunbar H.S. in Fort Worth, Texas, averaged nearly 25 points and 12.6 rebounds to earn a spot on the second team. Chelsey Lee (Miami, Fla.) was tabbed to the magazine’s third team. Lee, out of Parkway Academy, was named a Florida Class 3A First Team honoree last week. Nikki Speed (Pasadena, Calif.) also was named to the third team. The point guard averaged 12.1 points for Marlborough School. The Parade team, made up of 40 players, is selected by coaches, scouts, recruiters and media. Sykes was selected to the MaxPreps All-American first team last week, one of only five players to earn the honor. The second five on theMax Preps list included two Rutgers-bound freshmen, Dixon and Pope.
Monmouth Regional teacher to complete rare feat in September On Sept. 26, Peggy McKean, a resident of Tinton Falls, will travel to Omaha, Neb., to participate in yet another marathon. This marathon, however, is special because it will conclude McKean’s pursuit of “the 50 states,” a feat that is completed once a runner finishes a full marathon (26.2 miles) in every state. “It has been a fun trek, but it hasn’t been easy,” said McKean, who has been a teacher at Monmouth Regional High School for 10 years. “But I figured I could do this if others are in a lot more pain.” McKean began this undertaking at the age of 30when she ran her firstmarathon, the Jersey Shore Marathon in 2000. She will conclude her pursuit of running 50 marathons in 50 states one month before her 40th birthday, but she originally considered 20 years to be a realistic time frame to finish “I just thought to myself that I should set this goal of 50 states before age 50. I soon realized that I could do this much quicker, and everything fell into place,” she said. The pace at which McKean is willing to cross off states from her list is particularly astounding. Based on her plans, she will have completed 23 marathons in 2010, and she ran in 14 marathons last year. McKean recently checked Utah off her list and will head to Oregon, Alaska and Kansas before finishing her 50-state journey in Nebraska. Once she finishes the marathon in Nebraska, McKean will be only the second female from New Jersey to ever accomplish this exclusive feat. “It’s pretty amazing,” she said. In preparation for these marathons, McKean attends exercise classes and runs with other members of the Jersey Shore Running Club. A member of numerous running clubs, McKean has been an active member of the Jersey Shore Running Club for over 20 years. She is also part of a group called Marathon Maniacs, and she often meets fellow “Maniacs” along her journeys giving her an opportunity to share her experience with other runners. “It is really your extended family. I now have good friends in different states, and we understand each other,” McKean explained. “It is nice to talk about [running] and find out what you should do on these trips.” The trips themselves are unique experiences that if it were not for the marathons, Peggy McKean would never have been able to take part in. “I probably never would have gone to these places,” said McKean, who named Mount Rushmore and the French Quarter of New Orleans as two of her favorite sites. “I want to enjoy myself and see different things.” However, with these trips comes a price tag. “It’s an expensive hobby but a good one,” she said. “I have learned to do things by myself. I’ve learned to find my own way.” Back at home, McKean can’t help but plan her next long journey. “In the future, I want to run marathons on other continents as some of my friends have,” she said. “I would like to go to Africa and Rio, and, believe it or not, there is a marathon in Antarctica.” BY MATTHEW ROCCO Correspondent
Rejuvenated Australia paceman Mitchell Johnson blitzed England with a haul of five for 42 to lead his country to an emphatic 381-run victory in the first Ashes test on Sunday.It was a first win in 10 tests for Australia after losing a series 4-0 in India and another in England 3-0 this year, and a first triumph in eight Ashes contests since the Perth test in 2010.The weather, which delayed play twice for more than two hours, at one stage looked like extending the sometimes fractious contest into a fifth day before Johnson stepped up to polish off the final English batsmen in the Gabba twilight.England’s hopes of any kind of result at Brisbane had been slim at best when they were set a record 561 to win and lost two second innings wickets for only 24 runs on Saturday evening.They were shattered when the dismissal of captain Alastair Cook for 65 triggered a collapse from 142 for four to 160 for eight in the 45 minutes between the two weather disruptions.The victory was a confirmation of a renewed sense of confidence in the Australia team after a miserable year and will strengthen their belief that they can stop England winning a fourth successive Ashes series.“As a team, we’ve copped a fair bit of criticism of late, and our performances have probably deserved that,” said Australia captain Michael Clarke.“The win is very important, very special to us, it’s a great way to start the series.“We’ll enjoy it, no doubt about that, but we’re seven or eight days away from the second test match and we know England will come back harder.”Left-arm quick Johnson, who took 4-61 as the tourists were skittled for 136 in their first innings and contributed 103 runs with the bat, was named Man of the Match after claiming his eighth test five-wicket haul.Cook said England would regroup and come out fighting in the second test in Adelaide but needed to take a long, hard look at how they dealt with Johnson.“We’re going to have to be really honest with ourselves about how we go about trying to play him,” he said.“We can’t brush the issue, he’s hurt us in this game and we’re going to come back and show our ability in the next game.”“It’s just one loss, it’s a five-match test series so there’s plenty of time to fight back. We’ve done it before.”England made a reasonable start to the day but Kevin Pietersen (26) and Ian Bell (32) lost their wickets with shots they need not have played.As in the first innings when England lost six wickets for nine runs in one spell, though, it was spinner Nathan Lyon (2-46) who really got the ball rolling for the hosts.HAILSTORM BEFORE COLLAPSECook, who scored 235 not out in his second innings in the last Ashes test at the Gabba, had played a composed and defiant innings with just three boundaries before a dramatic hailstorm forced the players off the field.Six balls after the resumption, Lyon got a little bit of extra bounce out of the surface and Cook caught a top edge with an attempted cut with Brad Haddin taking the catch behind the wickets.England were only able to add only six runs for the next three wickets with Matt Prior (4), Stuart Broad (4) and Graeme Swann (0) quickly following their captain back to the pavilion.Lyon, who later got his first chance to lead Australia in the victory song despite being given the task last January, had Prior caught at leg slip by David Warner after just eight minutes in the middle.A bullish Broad lasted just three deliveries and five minutes before he got the faintest of touches to a Johnson delivery which again Haddin snaffled up.Swann lasted just two balls before a meek fend at a Johnson snorter saw the ball fly into the hands of a diving Steve Smith in the slips.England regrouped sufficiently to survive until the rain started falling again but the storm passed reasonably quickly and the players were back out with an hour of play remaining.Chris Tremlett blocked for seven runs until a rising Ryan Harris ball came off the splint of his bat into the hands of George Bailey at short leg.That left Joe Root (26 not out) and James Anderson as England’s last two batsmen and fittingly it was Johnson who dealt the coup de grace by dismissing his fellow quick caught and bowled to trigger the celebrations.“To get a five-for in a test match in an Ashes series is unbelievable feeling,” said Johnson, who has been lampooned in song for the last four years by England’s Barmy Army of fans.“All the boys just racing in and getting in a huddle was a great celebration for us. It was just a great moment, something I’ll never forget.“We need to celebrate tonight because it has been a while.”
By Pritha SarkarWith everyone ‘feeling hot, hot, hot’ at the All England Club on Wednesday, it was little wonder that Novak Djokovic and Maria Sharapova were eager to escape the Wimbledon furnace as quickly as possible.Spectators sitting under the searing sun on Wimbledon’s Henman Hill were heard breaking out into the Buster Poindexter anthem that aptly summed up the hottest day of the year in Britain – with the mercury hitting 93 degrees Fahrenheit (34C).Champion Djokovic was spared the worst of the heat on the partly covered Centre Court as he kept things simple in a 90-minute 6-4 6-2 6-3 second-round demolition job that ended the Wimbledon career of seasoned Finn Jarkko Nieminen.His opponent in the next round, Australian Bernard Tomic, will be hoping the weather eases for their Friday showdown after complaining it was “too hot”.“I was starting to get dizzy out there with the heat hitting me… I was very dizzy out there,” Tomic said after beating Frenchman Pierre-Hugues Herbert 7-6(3) 6-4 7-6(5).The blazing sun was the least of Sharapova’s concerns, however.“It’s much much warmer in my hometown in Longboat Key, Florida,” the Russian fourth seed said after subduing Dutchwoman Richel Hogenkamp 6-3 6-1.What would have concerned her though is her misfiring serves.The 2004 champion was left red-faced as she fired down three successive double faults to surrender her serve at 4-2 up in the first set but survived that blip to win the eight of the next nine games.Court Two also hosted the other half of tennis’ golden couple with Sharapova’s boyfriend Grigor Dimitrov, the 11th seed, outlasting American Steve Johnson 7-6(8) 6-2 7-6(2).“Everyone was talking about it’s hot, it’s hot. To me it was just such good weather today,” said the 2014 semi-finalist who will next take on Frenchman Richard Gasquet.Fifth seed Kei Nishikori spared his battered body further punishment after he pulled out of his second-round match against Santiago Giraldo with a calf strain.“I was hurting too much,” said the man whose exit will be a huge blow back in his Japanese homeland.Nishikori was not the only one needing medical attention on day three of the championships as a ball boy had to be wheeled off Court 17 after collapsing during American John Isner’s 6-2 7-6(8) 6-4 win over Australian Matthew Ebden.“I saw him on the ground. It was a very scary situation,” said Isner. “I’m not a doctor, but it looked like an epileptic seizure. It was very scary. I have heard that he’s doing much better, which is great.”Milos Raonic was kept on Court One longer than he would have liked by the oldest man in the singles draw.At 37, Tommy Haas proved that his patched-up body still had the ability to fight it out with the best even when he is under heavy bombardment.The German snatched the third set but Canadian seventh seed Raonic hurled down 29 aces, including one clocked at 145 miles per hour, to secure a 6-0 6-2 6-7(5) 7-6(4) victory.Stan Wawrinka moved seamlessly into the third round, wasting little energy to secure a 6-3 6-4 7-5 win over Victor Estrella Burgos in the evening sunshine on Court One.The French Open champion and winner of two of the last six grand slams strolled off court after a volleyed put-away clinched victory in an hour and 31 minutes.The fourth-seeded Swiss has only once reached the quarter-final at Wimbledon, losing to compatriot Roger Federer last year, and will face Spaniard Fernando Verdasco in the third round on Friday.US Open champion Marin Cilic meanwhile survived a huge scare, beating Lithuanian journeyman Richard Berankis in five sets, the Croatian coming through 6-3 4-6 7-6(6) 4-6 7-5 to book a date with Isner.Heather Watson made sure Britain did not suffer a wipeout in the women’s draw as she made it into round three with a 6-4 6-2 win over Slovakia’s former world number five Daniela Hantuchova, while world number one Serena Williams was untroubled in a routine 6-4 6-1 win over Hungary’s Timea Babos.
Dutchman Giorginio Wijnaldum scored four times as Newcastle United won their first Premier League match of the season at the ninth attempt by beating Norwich City 6-2 to climb off the bottom of the table on Sunday.Newcastle scored more goals in 90 minutes at St James’ Park than they had managed in their previous four league matches with Ayoze Perez and Aleksandar Mitrovic also finding the net.The victory lifted them on to six points and 18th place leaving Aston Villa (4 points) and Sunderland (3) below them. Norwich, promoted this season, slipped back from 15th to 16th.The first five goals came in a 20-minute first-half spell with Newcastle taking the lead through Wijnaldum in the 14th minute before Mbokani Bezua equalised six minutes later.Wijnaldum headed Newcastle 2-1 ahead after 26 minutes with Perez making it 3-1 in the 33rd before Norwich came right back to make it 3-2 through a Nathan Redmond volley a minute later.Norwich continually threatened for an equaliser after the break before Newcastle wrapped up their long-awaited victory with another two goals a minute apart,Mitrovic chested down and volleyed home to make it 4-2 after 64 minutes. Wijnaldum headed home to complete his hat-trick a minute later before scoring his fourth with a thunderous long-range strike after 85 minutes.
Wimbledon order of play on show courts on Monday. Prefix denotes seeding. All times GMT.CENTRE COURT (1200)3-Roger Federer (Switzerland) v Steve Johnson (U.S.)1-Serena Williams (U.S.) v 13-Svetlana Kuznetsova (Russia)15-Nick Kyrgios (Australia) v 2-Andy Murray (Britain)COURT ONE (1200)5-Simona Halep (Romania) v 9-Madison Keys (U.S.)8-Venus Williams (U.S.) v 12-Carla Suarez Navarro (Spain)7-Richard Gasquet (France) v 12-Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (France)COURT TWO (1030)Misaki Doi (Japan) v 4-Angelique Kerber (Germany)9-Marin Cilic (Croatia) v 5-Kei Nishikori (Japan)11-David Goffin (Belgium) v 6-Milos Raonic (Canada)
The Dallas Cowboys unseated Spanish football club Real Madrid for top spot on a list of the world’s 50 most valuable sports teams, according to a Forbes poll that was dominated by NFL franchises.The value of the National Football League’s Cowboys rose 25 per cent to $4 billion compared to last year, while the value of 10-time European champions Real Madrid rose 12 per cent to $3.65 billion over the same period, Forbes said in a statement.It marks the first time since the list’s inception in 2011 that a non-football club has taken the top spot on the list.“Blockbuster TV contracts are fuelling unprecedented increases in sports team values around the globe as the average value of a top 50 franchise has doubled over the past four years,” said Forbes senior editor Kurt Badenhausen.“The NFL is still king on TV with contracts worth nearly $7 billion annually from its media partners.”Football’s Barcelona ($3.55 billion), Major League Baseball’s New York Yankees ($3.4 billion) and Manchester United ($3.32 billion) rounded out the top five.The NFL had 27 franchises listed in the top-50 followed by European football and the National Basketball Association, who each had eight teams on the list, followed by MLB with seven.The 10 most valuable teams (in billions):1. Dallas Cowboys – $4.02. Real Madrid – $3.653. Barcelona – $3.554. New York Yankees – 3.45. Manchester United – 3.326. New England Patriots – 3.27. New York Knicks – 3.08. Washington Redskins – $2.859. New York Giants – $2.810. Los Angeles Lakers – $2.710. San Francisco 49ers – $2.7
The event, the 48th edition of the Championships, is due to take place between January 27 and 29 next year. A website has been active since last July and has now been joined by a Facebook page. The Championships are due to be held on the Olympic Bobsleigh Run that was built for the 1976 Winter Olympics.It will be the fifth occasion that Tirol’s capital has hosted the Championships. The first was in 1977 and has then been followed at 10-year intervals in 1987, 1997 and 2007. Other social media channels, including a Twitter page, are due to be launched shortly.