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Somerville HS Pioneers Honored for Championship Seasons by State Senate, Assembly

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State lawmakers honored members of four championship teams from Somerville High School at the Statehouse. Credits: Courtesy Sen. Christopher "Kip" Bateman
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TRENTON, NJ  - Central New Jersey lawmakers, joined by their legislative colleagues, gathered in the Statehouse last week to honor the achievements of Somerville High School student althletes and their 2017-18 championship seasons.

State Sen. Christopher “Kip” Bateman, (R-Somerset, Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex), joined by state Asemblymen Andrew Zwicker (D-16th) and Roy Freiman, (D-16th) invited the teams, their coaches and parents to the state capital for the ceremony and to receive proclamations. Each student received a personalized citation from the lawmakers recognizing their individual performance.

The boys’ football, baseball and unified bowling teams, along with the Lady Pioneers’ basketball team, all had championship seasons.

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The joint legislative resolutions singled out several individual students for their high level of play during the season and championship rounds as well as their coaches’ leadership and guidance.

The Joint Legislative Resolution  honoring the football team, authored by Bateman, Zwicker and Freiman reads:

“Whereas, the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey ae pleased to honor the members of the Somerville Pioneers Varsity Football Team, all admired young residents of the Garden State,  for their outstanding sporting accomplishment, and

“Whereas, the members of the Somerville Pioneers Varsity Football Team concluded a triumphant season with an overall record of 11-1, and playing with the unrivaled determination and unmatched skill, they captured the NJSIAA Central Group III Championship with a score of 20-15 on December 2, 2017 and,

“Whereas the members of the Somerville Pioneers Varsity Football Team have especially distinguished themselves by achieving the eighth Group Championship in their school’s history, as well as it first since 1994 and,

“Whereas, particularly lauded for his uncommon ability is junior quarterback Jalahn Dabney, whose sixty-six yard drive was the game winning turning point, after rival Rumson Fair-Haven had taken a 15-14 lead, and

“Whereas further appreciated are Robert Fiorentino, Joseph Ciempola, and Kyrie Hinton, whose steadfast resolve contributed immeasurably to their team’s impressive win, and,

“Whereas, under the superb leadership of their coaches, including Head Coach Jeffrey Vanderbeek, these exceptional young athletes have demonstrated the finest qualities of true champions, and,

“Whereas, their talent and exemplary perserverence in seeking and attaining athletic excellence have earned for the members and coaches of the Somerville Pioneers Varsity Football Team the high regard of the New Jersey Legislature and the people of this state, now therefore,

“Be it resolved by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:

“That this Legislature hereby honors and congratulates the Somerville Pioneers Varsity Football Team and commends the team’s players and coaches for their singular efforts and competitive spirit as evidenced by their illustrious victory, and,

“Be it further resolved that a duly authenticated copy of this resolution, signed by the Senate president and the Assembly speaker and attested by the Senate secretary and Assembly clerk, be transmitted to the Somerville Pioneers Varsity Football Team.”

Similarly-worded resolutions honoring the baseball, bowling and Lady Pioneers basketball team were also adopted by the Senate and Assembly.

Baseball:

“Whereas, the members of the Somerville Pioneers Varsity Baseball Team concluded a triumphant season with an overall record of 20-5, and playing with unrivaled determined and unmatched skill, they captured the NJSIAA Group III State Title by defeating Allentown High School with a score of 3-2 on June 10, 2018, and,

“Whereas the members of the Somerville Pioneers Varsity Baseball Team have especially distinguished themselves by achieving the first Group Championship in their school’s 114-year history, and,

“Whereas, on the pitcher’s mound were senior Thomas Babalis, who led the way pitching six innings and allowing two runs on seven hits with eight strikeouts and one walk, as well as junior Bobby Wortman, who continued his predecessor’s energy by navigating a bases-loaded, one-out threat in the seventh inning with three strikeouts, and,

“Whereas, further appreciated for his uncommon resolves is freshmen second baseman Matt Miceli, whose RBI triple in the bottom of the fifth broke the 1-1 deadlock, and,

“Whereas, Under the superb leadership of their coaches, including Head Varsity Coach Chris Banos and Pitching Coach Ryan Zamorski, these exceptional athletes have demonstrated the finest qualities of true champaions . . . “

Lady Pioneers Basketball:

“Whereas the members of the Somerville Lady Pioneers Basketball Team concluded a triumphant season, and playing with unrivaled determination and unmatched skill, they captured the NJSIAA North 2 Group III Final by defeating Warren Hills High School with a score of 55-47 on March 5, 2018,’ and

“Whereas the members of the Somerville Lady Pioneers Basketball Team have especially distinguished themselves by achieving their school’s second consecutive Sectional Title, and

“Whereas particularly lauded for their uncommon ability are seniors Christina Cernuto, who scored nine of her elevent points in the fourth quarter, Meghan Douglas, who finished with twelve points and eight rebounds, and Anna McVerry, who collected five of her eight rebounds before intermission and scored a three-point shot with 2:15 of the third period, as well as junior Emily Markowski, who tallied a team-hgih seventeen points and,

“Whereas, further appreciated are Sara Tevares, Kelsey Mehan, and Micole Mallard, whose steadfast resolve contributed immeasurably to their team’s impressive win, and,

“Whereas, Under the superb leadership of Head Coach Matthew Melesurgo, these exceptional young athletes have demonstrated the finest qualities of true champions . . . “

Unified Bowling Team:

“Whereas, the members of the Somerville Unified Bowling Team concluded a triumphant season, and playing with unrivaled determination and unmatched skill, they captured the 2018 NJSIAA Sectional Championship and,

“Whereas, under the superb leadership of their coaches, these exceptional young athletes have demonstrated the finest qualities of true champions . . . “

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