Category Archives: SPORTS

CD Ram nabs all-state football honor

Ethan Van Buskirk, senior Central Dauphin kicker, recently was named to the Pennsylvania Football News Class 6A All-State Team. He was the only Mid Penn Conference player to be named to the first-team offense.

Plus, he is a 2017 Mini Max High School Award winner and was among those honored by the Maxwell Football Club at an awards dinner in Drexel Hill, Pa.

Topping off his haul of hardware, Van Buskirk was selected in November to the Mid Penn Commonwealth Division first team football all-stars.

The 2017 season was a productive one for Van Buskirk with 72 points. He hit on 36 or 37 extra points (PAT) and 12 of 17 field goal attempts, with the longest boot being a 49 yarder in the season’s opening game against Susquehanna Township.

Van Buskirk also was the team’s punter, averaging 30 yards on 28 punts.

Linglestown Gazette salutes Van Buskirk for a job well done both on and off the field. Congrats!
Central Dauphin junior linebacker and fullback Adam Burkhart got an honorable mention on the Pennsylvania Football News Class 6A All-State Team for his defensive play last season.

Photo: Ethan Van Buskirk (center) is pictured with Central Dauphin head football coach Glen McNamee (left) and strength and Central Dauphin kicking coach Denny Duttenhoffer (right).

Interview with Van Buskirk first published on Linglestown Gazette’s YouTube pagee on Oct. 27, 2017.

Lady Rams Hoops Weekly for Jan. 11, 2018

The week’s LRHW puts the spotlight on senior forward Nadia Romanchock, #25.

Host Joe Gilloway quizzes Nadia’s about the state of her game and has some fun during the “Keepin’ It Light” segment that is becoming a fan favorite.

The show’s title sponsor is Econ Wealth Management. Get more info about this Linglestown-based financial services firm by visiting their website.

Still photography used in this show was graciously provided by Neil Renaldi. Check out his world class sports photography at his website.

Central Dauphin Rams football MVP awarded

Gazette congratulations go out to Noah Hoffman for being awarded the “Ram of the Year” award last night at the Central Dauphin football team’s post-season banquet.

Hoffman, a junior, quietly went about his business last season while playing something like four different positions. He’s listed as a defensive back and quarterback.

Like we did in 2017, the Gazette plans to provide in-depth coverage of Rams football next season.
Hoffman, on the right, is pictured with CD head football coach Glen McNamee. (Note the pencil stuck behind coach’s right ear. Is this a trademark look for the coach?)

BASKETBALL COLUMN: Lady Rams get home cookin’ with secret sauce

By Joe Gilloway
Gazette sports correspondent

Well, I was warned.

It was during an extended conversation Thursday evening with a friend who’s as intimately connected with Pennsylvania high school sports as you’ll find, and even more specifically Mifflin County high school sports.

I was told to expect some home-brewed officiating at the Lady Rams at Mifflin County Lady Huskies girls basketball game. I pretty much brushed it off. And not that my friend isn’t credible. I’d go to him for anything to do with high school sports. He’s been at it for decades. He’s known the players, the coaches, the officials, and anyone else connected to PIAA athletics, for just shy of 40 years. But I just didn’t think it could possibly be this bad.

I arrived at the school, and it was a sight to behold. As nice a school as you’ll find. Or at least close to that. Finished just six years ago I was told, the entrance looked like a courthouse in some upper-crust southern city. Like maybe in Savannah, Georgia, or Charleston, South Carolina. Okay, so far, so good. The place looked legit.

I was treated kindly by a handful of older men who were posing as “Security”. They made no objections when I told them where I’d like to set up my equipment to air my reports, and even asked if there’d be anything else I needed. Nice school … check. Nice people working the venue … check.

But then came what I was warned about.

The game tipped off, and I’d barely gotten my first Laffy Taffy unwrapped before our top scorer received her second personal foul call. Get opposing scorer into foul trouble … check.

Do players commit fouls? Certainly. Should they be called? Most definitely. In my best Ron Popeil voice, “But wait, there’s more.”

Our backup guard, Delaney, was assigned to blanket the Huskies best player, and it looked like more of a sleeping bag. Wherever their #3 went, our #13 was there. I know good one-on-one coverage, and Delaney was playing it. But after a spell of not being able to get into her normal offensive groove, #3 placed a forearm directly into #13’s chest, which literally pulled her off the ground and onto her back. This occurred just near center court, in view of everyone but the man mopping the floors of the palace lobby.

Do officials miss calls? Certainly they do. But are we starting to see a trend here? Yup.

So the game goes on, and it’s a tight one. The Huskies were, for the most part, playing well. They’re coached well, and they were executing. I’m not here to take anything away from a bunch of hard-working kids who were just trying to win a game. My hat is off to them. And they certainly weren’t in on anything outside of following Coach Herto’s plan.

But then came the Lady Rams’ push. They started to wear down the Huskies a bit, took a brief lead, and that seemed to be the signal. Yeah, I’m going there.

Senior forward Jamie Brann, who had no fouls at the time, came hustling up the court in an attempt to alter a shot by the Huskies #3. She committed a foul. Okay, that’s one for her, right? Nope. You see, we had a player with two personal fouls at the time, who was not remotely part of this particular play. And don’t you know, now she had her third. Her being in foul trouble, as it was just early in the second half, had a lot more value than making the call on the player with zero fouls.

I watched as the Rams coaches respectfully notified the official that he’d called the foul on the wrong player. And then I saw the official running down the court, shoulders shrugged, with a look of, “Hey, we ain’t perfect.” Those sitting at the scorer’s table were even trying to notify the official that he’d tagged the wrong player with the foul. What does that tell ya’?

So now we’re in the fourth quarter. Point guard Sam Gress is trapped, but not giving up the ball. She starts to get visibly smacked in her face by the overly-aggressive Huskies defenders. And no, I don’t blame the Huskies players. Again, they’re just trying to win a game. And basketball is a contact sport which often gets a little rough. But I watched Sam approach the official after the play, just to make him aware of what had transpired. She did so with nothing but courtesy and respect. That’s all Sam knows. She couldn’t be any other way if she tried.

But the official took exception, and told her, essentially, that if she didn’t shut her mouth and go away, she’d be assessed a technical foul. Typically a game official prefers a player approach him or her after the play, just as Sam did, and make them aware of things they may not be seeing. Not this guy. Seemed like an ideal opportunity to potentially make things a bit more of an uphill climb for Sam and her team.

So fast forward to close to the end of the game. It’s tight. The Rams are again operating on just a tad bit of momentum. Forward Nadia Romanchock, who was playing a whale of a game, gets the ball down low, just under the basket. She puts up a shot and a foul is called. The CD fans erupt. It’s just what they needed. The clock is stopped, and Nadia, a strong free throw shooter, is heading to the line to shoot two.

The official then walks over to the scorer’s table, and in a moment of what seemed like just a colossal brain fart, signals that the foul is on “#25 in green”. Has to be wrong. He’ll fix it, right? Wrong.

He called an offensive foul on a play we’ve all seen thousands of time. Player gets ball under basket. Player puts up simple little layup amongst two opposing players. Foul is called. Pretty common, huh? But how often to you see the player who is shooting the ball called for the foul? Probably only in settings like this.

Now we’re down to the wire. Somehow the Rams have stuck around and still given themselves an opportunity to win this game.

Our player, we’ll just call her #15, clearly has possession of the ball. The opposing player grabs hold too. Jump ball (or “held ball”, as it’s now referred), right? Possession arrow to the Rams. They’re gonna somehow pull this one out! But the Huskies coach calls a timeout, which was granted, and his team also is given possession of the ball. Cripes.

We are now officially in the Twilight Zone. It’s time to laugh or cry. Total free throw attempts for the Huskies 29, and for the Rams 15.

A college coach in attendance, who was there to watch one of his signees, called it the most poorly officiated game she’d ever seen. And this woman has been around the block. Knows basketball. Knows officiating. Been there, done that. And much more than most of us.

So what do you do? Well, take your lumps. Chalk it up to, “Sometimes that’s just what you get.” Sour grapes? You’d better believe it. Very sour. Extremely sour.

But I’ll never again discount my friend when he warns me of the pending officiating doom waiting up there just off Route 322 in Lewistown. Again, he’s from there. He’s seen it time and time again. Knows the routine. And he wasn’t just making small talk when preparing me for it.

Keep tabs on CD Lady Rams b-ball

Lady Rams Hoops Weekly host Joe Gilloway recaps recent Lady Rams games and tournament play, plus reviews the standings in the Mid-Penn Commonwealth Division.

This week’s special guest is #14, junior point guard Sam Gress.

LHRW is brought to you by Econ Wealth Management. Check out their services by clicking HERE.

Still photography used in this LRHW episode was provided by Neil Renaldi.

Lady Rams b-ballers notch 5th win of season

In high school hoops action Tuesday night, the Central Dauphin Lady Rams (3-2 in division, 5-4 overall) rolled to a 61-36 win over the visiting Chambersburg Trojans (0-5 in division, 4-6 overall).

The Trojans netted the first two-pointer of the game, but CD quickly took command and ended the first quarter with 17-5 lead and never were threatened the rest of the game.

The Rams were led offensively by senior guards Grace Long with 18 points and Sam Gress with 17. Both players were hot from three-point land — Sam had five and Grace knocked down four.

Meanwhile, CD seniors Nadia Romanchock and Faith St. Clair had solid games on the defensive end of the floor.

For more insights on the Chambersburg game, watch the video post-game show with Gazette sports correspondent Joe Gilloway and hist guests, CD Coach G and Grace Long, the game’s top scorer.

The Lady Rams return to action this Friday, Jan. 5 on the road against Mifflin County High School in the Lewistown area.
Pictured above is Grace Long from action in the Harrisburg game on Dec. 18, 2017. Photo was taken by Neil Renaldi.

Lady Rams finish 4th in Delaware tournament

The Central Dauphin Lady Rams basketball team accomplished their mission despite coming home with a 1-2 record in a holiday tournament in Delaware.

The Diamond State Classic held in Wilmington, Delaware, is a national-level tournament and the Rams were slotted into a division that featured at least one nationally ranked team. They finished fourth out of eight teams.

The tournament allowed CD head coach Randy Gambelunghe to give his team experience playing against teams that have more depth and firepower than most local competitors. This is the kind of thing winning programs do.

The Rams won their first game in triple overtime against Ursuline Academy (Delaware) and then were outclassed two times by private school teams to close out the tournament — Mater Dei (California) 71 – CD 24 on Friday, and Sanford School (Delaware) 45 – CD 29 on Saturday.

“Coach G is going deep into his bench [during the two losses) and letting some of the younger players get a taste of this high-level competition,” said Gazette sports correspondent Joe Gilloway. “The girls came to play, and aren’t backing down.”

The Lady Rams return to action this Tuesday, January 2, with a home game against Chambersburg Area. Game times are 6 pm for junior varsity and 7:30 pm for varsity.
Photo by Neil Renaldi Pictured is Central Dauphin senior forward Nadia Romanchock (#25 in white) in action against Harrisburg in a recent game.

For more information on the Lady Rams’ third game in Diamond State Classic, watch Joe Gilloway’s pre-game show recorded on Saturday, Dec.30, 2017.

Lady Rams survive triple OT in Delaware b-ball tourney

By Joe Gilloway
Gazette sports correspondent

WILMINGTON – Swan Lake it was not.

But Central Dauphin girls basketball head coach Randy Gambelunghe will probably take substance over elegance any day, especially in a triple overtime thriller in the team’s opener at the Diamond State Classic tournament in Wilmington, Delaware.

The task at hand was a match-up against the Delaware three-time defending state champion Ursuline Academy Raiders, and no one thought it’d be easy.

This contest was marred by foul trouble, costly missed free throws, and enough turnovers for two games, Top priority on this night for CD Coach G and his Lady Rams was to survive and advance.

And that is precisely what the Lady Rams team did last night. Just when you thought CD’s nine lives may have been used up, they kept figuring out ways to force the fans to stay in their seats for just a little bit longer. And it took until late in the third overtime to finally seal the deal on a Diamond State Classic instant classic.

The Rams jumped out to a 7-0 lead in the first quarter, putting an end to any doubt about whether they even belonged in the game.

But true to champion form, Ursuline did not go away easy. They went on a 7-2 run to finish off the first quarter to get back in the game and only trail by two points after one period.

Then the spotlight started to shine on CD’s Sam Gress. The junior point guard went three for three from behind the three-point arc in the second quarter to lead the Rams to a 19-12 lead at halftime..

Ursuline Academy came out for the third quarter with seemingly one thing on their mind – disruption. They went into a full-court press and the Rams had few answers. The Raiders pressed to near perfection, allowing the green and white only four third quarter points, while picking up 11 to end the third quarter with the teams tied at 23.

The fourth quarter was a back-and-forth affair, with Rams field goals by Jamie Brann and fellow seniors Grace Long and Faith St. Clair, along with Gress going two for two from the free throw line. The buzzer sounded with the contest unresolved at 31 apiece.

Heading into overtime was probably a welcome situation for Ursuline, and one that CD probably felt could have been avoided. But in a tournament like this, with two elite programs on the court … heck, why not?

The Rams spent the first overtime with a five for six showing at the charity stripe that accounted for their only points, but it was enough to earn them a trip into a second overtime period. Ursuline’s Lauren Dorsey and Kaleigh White shared their team’s five points.

Now things were getting fun.

The second overtime added (of course) considerably more drama, and for a moment looked to be getting away from the Lady Rams. Missed opportunities from the free-throw line gave the Raiders some chances to seal the deal, but Long’s clutch three-pointer seemed to turn things back to the Rams.

Down three, Ursuline had one more trip down the court with a last-ditch chance at throwing another four minutes back on the clock. They worked the ball to six-foot sophomore forward Kaleigh White at the top of the arc, and White delivered what Ursuline fans would say was her first-ever three-pointer under game conditions. She picked the best time imaginable to find out how that feels, sending the game to a third overtime period.

The third OT was all Rams, with two field goals from Brann and two clutch free throws from Long. Meanwhile, the Raiders were held to a final stanza goose egg to end this marathon 50-44 in favor of the Rams.

Next up for the Rams on Friday at 3:15 p.m. is nationally-ranked No. 25 Mater Dei from Santa Ana, California, who breezed to an 89-27 victory over Archbishop Spaulding High School out of over Severn, Maryland.


* CD point guard Sam Gress is featured in the photo at the top this article. After missing the Central Dauphin East game last week that the Rams dropped, her presence in the lineup and shooting from three-point land were keys to victory against Ursuline Academy.

* In a nutshell, this game was the kind you can only dream for in a contest of this nature: Two high-profile programs going hard and leaving it all on the court.

* Stats don’t typically matter much in these types of affairs, but here’s some for those interested:

Gress led the Rams in scoring with 17, followed by Brann’s 15.

Long continued her late-game heroics with all of her seven points coming in the fourth quarter and overtime. She’s now scored 21 in the past two games, with 17 coming in the second halves, and 15 in the fourth quarter and overtime periods.

Ursuline Academy freshman Lauren Dorsey led all Raiders in scoring with 15.

* CD senior guard St. Clair was her usual pesky self on the defensive end, holding Ursuline offensive stalwart Maggie Connolly to just five points in what appeared to be a box-and-one defensive scheme. And CD senior forward Nadia Romanchock held down the boards from opening tip to final buzzer, along with altering a good number of easy Ursuline looks under the basket, which kept the Raiders’ points in the paint to a minimum.

Video report courtesy of Delaware Sports Zone.

CD Lady Rams down Harrisburg Cougars

By Bill Bostic
Gazette sports reporter

CD High’s girls basketball team was on the top of their game Tuesday, 12/18/17, in defeating Harrisburg in a home game 45-37.

The Lady Rams were led by senior forward Jamie Brann who netted 11 points and sparked the team during critical points of the game.

Also playing stellar games were Faith St. Clair with 11 points, and Carol Weber who continued to be in good early-season form by dropping in 10.

Both teams will be contenders for the Mid Penn Conference Commonwealth Division title and this contest was a tight one. CD held a thin lead for most of the game and won three quarters.

The win takes the Rams’ record to 2-1 in the division and 3-1 overall

Next up for the Lady Rams is cross-town rival CD East on Wednesday, 12/20/17, with a 7:30 pm tip-off.
Lady Rams b-ball coverage is brought to by Econ Wealth Management, along with helping hand from Fabio’s Italian Restaurant and Pizza and Linglestown Fire House Bar.

Photo — Senior forward Carol Weber is shown in action last season against CD East, the Rams’ next opponent.

Harrisburg is home to new boxing champ

By Bill Bostic
Gazette sports writer

Pro boxing set up shop on Saturday, Dec. 9, 2017, in the Pennsylvania Farm Show’s intimate small arena and a local athlete was awarded a title belt.

Jamaal Davis ( pictured below in the white t-shirt) of Harrisburg bested Antowyan Aikens of Atlantic City, NJ, in an eight-round bout with the World Boxing Foundation USA Super Middleweight title on the line in the evening’s main event.

Davis got off to a shaky start but rallied in rounds three and four to take command of the contest, knocking down Aikens at least two times.

Aikens steadied himself in rounds five through seven to remain in the hunt, but Davis sealed the deal by dominating the final round.

After ring announcer Nicholas Chimienti Jr. (pictured below) informed the crowd of about 450 fans that Davis had won in a split decision, a joyous celebration broke out in the ring as Davis, his trainers, family and friends celebrated his title win.

By the way, Chimienti serves as Dauphin County’s sheriff when he’s not doing his thing in the ring.

Andrew Foy, a doctor at Hershey Medical Center and a former boxer, was the promoter of this event dubbed Proving Grounds III. The show attracted an enthusiastic crowd that witnessed an entertaining card of eight boxing matches that included six Harrisburg pros.

Foy’s company is called Titans Boxing Promotions and he is looking to hold the next event in March or April next year.
Additional info:

Get to know Andrew Foy by CLICKING HERE to view a video.

Did you know that state Senator John DiSanto digs boxing. CLICK HERE to view a Facebook Live video recorded during Proving Grounds III.