Livingston Varsity Bowling Achieves "Trifecta" with Conference, County and Sectional Titles

Senior Co-captains Justin Schoenbach and Zachary Schwartz, Seniors Allen Cai and Alec Ammerata, Junior Louis Farer and Freshman Michael Liu. Credits: Don Schwartz

LIVINGSTON, NJ — The Livingston High School bowling team is coming off the 2016-2017 season with an overall record of 16-2 and what the team is calling the “Trifecta”—winning the conference, county and state sectional titles.

In addition to those titles, the Lancers also set a new school record of 1163 pins in a single game and finished third in the prestigious Warren Wheeler Tournament, sponsored by Westfield High School, at Jersey Lanes in Linden.

“That gave us our first clue that we were going to be decent because that is a pretty prestigious tournament,” said head coach Griff Hughes. “It’s building every year and the best schools come to it.”

Sign Up for E-News

With only six boys on the varsity team, named Livingston boys bowling the “clear favorite” in the Group 4 tournament.

After the first of three games in the county championship, the team was only one pin behind James Caldwell. The Lancers came in behind Millburn in the second game to hold second place, but Millburn failed to break 900 in the third game and Livingston came home with the win by 99 pins. 

After winning the county title, three Livingston boys made it into the top 12 for the individual county series. Each bowler had three games, in which Livingston freshman Michael Liu had the best series overall with 680 to earn the No. 1 seed in the individual tournament.

Despite placing second overall in the individual tournament, Hughes said Liu is an outstanding freshman bowler and was enthusiastic about his future.

In fact, Liu rolled a 792 series to set a new individual school series record for Livingston High School during the season.

“We had an outstanding year,” said Hughes. “All of our bowlers improved in varying degrees over the year with practice and instruction. Our JV squad went 53-1 and only lost one game the entire year, so that was outstanding for them, too.”

The varsity team includes senior co-captains Justin Schoenbach and Zachary Schwartz; senior Allen Cai, who was named Livingston Athlete of the Week earlier this year; senior Alec Ammerata; junior Louis Farer; and freshman Michael Liu.

Farer’s mother, Sharryn Farer, whose older son, Sam, was captain of the bowling team in 2016, said being on the bowling team has been great for both of her boys.

“It's been a wonderful and successful year for the team,” she said. “As parents of the players, we wish the LHS community was more familiar with the bowling team and would encourage their kids to try out each year. Over the years, the bowling team has been one of the most successful for LHS.”

The younger Farer, who has been around the team since 7th grade supporting his brother, said every member of the varsity team was proud of the Lancers’ success this season. Despite losing some key players, Farer said he looks forward to the next bowling season and hopes the team can be equally as successful as it was this year.

“One of the things I love the most about the team is that everyone is extremely supportive of one another, whether someone is playing JV or varsity,” he said. “We will miss four of our varsity players who will be graduating this year who were strong assets to the team.”

Co-captains Schwartz and Schoenbach both acknowledged the junior varsity team for its incredibly successful season and for the support the JV team showed the varsity players throughout the year.

“It was an honor to play with my teammates on varsity and I'm very proud of how we came together as a team during big matches and tournaments,” said Schwartz. “This season is a memory I won't forget, especially with all the hardware we took home just titles what we've been doing all season—winning.”

Schoenbach said the players sometimes felt discouraged and never thought they would make it as far as they did, but were able to accomplish a Trifecta under the direction of Coach Hughes.

“This year has been a success not only from our success as a team but our individual growth as well,” said Schoenbach. “We would always bring each other up when we were down and did our part in helping the team succeed.”

Schwartz thanked the parents for their support this year as well as throughout his four-year bowling career. He also thanked Hughes for all the hard work he has put into the team.

Hughes retired this week as a Livingston educator, but said he would continue to coach the bowling team and encouraged anyone thinking about joining next season to try out.

“It’s a fun sport,” said Hughes. “It’s a non-contact sport, but it’s something they can take with them their entire lives. It’s a sport you can leave high school with and keep doing.”

Bowling is a winter sport and begins in November.

“I advise anyone thinking about joining the team next year to try out and give it a shot because there is a unique level of comradery within our team as well as with the other teams in the conference, which you rarely see in a high school sport,” said Farer. “Being on this team has greatly enhanced my time in high school where I can put my schoolwork aside and have some fun for the afternoon.”

The above photo was provided by Don Schwartz. 

TAP Into Another Town's News:

Sign Up for E-News


Free Class at CylcleBar Livingston to Support Sustainability

June 22, 2018

LIVINGSTON, NJ — Join us at CycleBar Livingston for Uplift Humanity's first charity event! In addition to getting your sweat on for FREE, you can learn about about how we are using a sustainability-first approach to solve poverty in developing countries around the world. Meet our Board and Founder and get information on volunteer opportunities.

We've partnered with ...

Deegan Dental Implant Special!


Deegan Dental is happy to announce our New Dental Implant Special Offer that will give you a reason to smile! Our New Special Offer, that expires 11/30/2018, covers a single Complete Tooth Replacement (including the Implant, Stock Abutment and E-max Crown) for only $2,200 per Implant; a Great Value ...

Upcoming Events

Tue, July 17, 7:00 PM

Livingston Public Library, Livingston

Organically Yours: a wellness experience with ...


Sat, July 21, 7:30 PM

Par 440 Restaurant & Lounge, SHORT HILLS

Solid Gold with Bobby Valli at Par 440

Arts & Entertainment Food & Drink

Former Jefferson School (Maplewood) Staffer Facing Criminal Charges For Alleged Lewd Photos of Students

June 22, 2018

MAPLEWOOD, NJ - A former Jefferson Elementary School paraprofessional has been charged with criminal behavior believed to be related to lewd photos of students at the school that were found on his cell phone after he was arrested in Morris County on an unrelated sexual charge.

It also appears that South Orange Maplewood School District officials knew about the arrests as early as ...

Livingston’s Electronics and Paper Shredding Event: Sunday, June 24

June 21, 2018

LIVINGSTON, NJ - The Township of Livingston is holding an Electronics Recycling and Paper Shredding Event on Sunday, June 24. Livingston residents may take their electronics and confidential papers to the rear and side parking lots of the Senior/Community Center at 204 Hillside Ave. from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.  

Under the Township’s recycling ordinance and New Jersey state law, it is ...

My So-Called Graduation

The last of my children graduated from high school.  


My son and daughter threw their caps high into the air and cheered their liberation from one symbolic institution before contemplating their matriculation into other, much larger institutions significantly further away.  


Or at least far enough away that they won’t be needing rides home from ...

Summertime Air Quality Issues

Summer weather can be harmful to your health due to air pollutants like ozone, mold, and moisture that are more prevalent both inside and outside than they are during cooler months. 

Sunny days, warm temperatures, and light winds don’t allow pollutants to be cleared from outside air. Instead, they encourage the formation of ozone, a leading air pollutant.  Ozone is ...