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April 2013 www.branchburgnews.com


High Flying SHS Cheerleaders Are National Champs


On Feb. 23, Somerville High School Competition Cheerleaders competed at the Reach the Beach National Championship in Ocean City, MD. They came back with a first-place finish.


The team members show off their championship rings at Willie McBrides.


Championship Bulldogs Have Ring Reunion


Members of the 14U Branch- burg Bulldogs baseball team -- the team that won the 2012 Babe Ruth Baseball 14-Year-Old World Se- ries on Aug. 25 -- had a reunion on Feb. 24 at Willie McBride’s, and Branchburg Baseball Club Presi- dent Steve Sokol presented the boys and coaches with champion- ship rings.


Sokol first announced the plan for rings at the Bulldogs’ welcome home event, Aug. 30 at White Oak Park.


Thirteen Branchburg boys, most of whom played together for six years, made it to the World Series in Murray, Utah. Most of them had gotten there once before, in 2008 when the Cal Ripken World Series was held in Abbeville, Louisiana. That time they placed third. In 2012, they went all the way, be- coming world champs by beating the Jacksonville, Florida team in the final game.


Players are: Daniel Bacon #15 Right Field; Joshua Dela Cruz #3 Short Stop, Pitcher; Christopher DiCostanzo #20 Second Base; Kel- len Hardy #5 First Base, Pitcher;


Here the boys encircle their champion- ship trophy with their freshly ringed hands.


Paul Huff #11 Right Field, Short Stop, Pitcher; Jake Kobuta #10 Right Field, Left Field, First Base; Ethan Kornbrek #32 Pitcher; Austin Markowski #1 Left Field, Pitcher; Joe Mosca #44 Third Base; Hunter Muratore #7 Second Base; Andrew Prescott #6 Right Field; Robert Quick #55 Center Field; Tommy Scharnikow #24 Catcher, Pitcher.


Coaches are: Tom Scharnikow, manager; Rich Muratore; Bill Mosca, Clay Hardy


Pizzazz and Prizes to BEF Bash Lasers, adult beverages, kids games, a full buffet, amazing prizes and more will add some new flavor to the Branchburg Education Foundation’s annual springtime fundraising event this year.


“Spring Fling FUN’raiser” on Saturday Apr. 6 adds


The successor to the annual Taste of Branchburg is the new Spring Fling FUN’raiser at Branchburg Sports Complex on Saturday, Apr. 6 from 7 to 10 pm. Consistent with the Taste of Branchburg, the goal of the new event is to raise funds for innovative and enriching educational programs for Branchburg and Somerville High School students. All proceeds from the Fling will support this cause.


Attendees will enjoy music by RockitDJ Entertainment, a full cash bar and the option for one free round of adult laser tag at the end of the evening. Prizes are top shelf: a one-night stay at a highly rated New Jersey inn, a fam- ily pass to the NJ Festival of Ballooning, bread for a year donated by Panera, and Walt Disney World passes valued at $500, and much more. Price of admission is $40 per person if pre-registered and $50 per person at the door. Admission price includes full buffet meal, including appetizers and desserts.


For the first time in the history of Somerville High School, the cheer- leaders are national champions. Over 250 school and recreational teams competed over the weekend. The SHS girls competed against six teams in the small varsity ad- vanced division and earned the highest score of their session. Based on this significant achieve- ment, the team has gained the op- portunity to advance to the U.S. Finals Cheer Competition in Ana- heim, CA, on Apr. 13. The U.S. Finals is an end-of-the-year series of six events aimed at crowning true champions in all divisions and levels of cheer and dance, giving teams a chance to see where they rank against other teams in their respective divisions from coast to coast and around the world. To raise funds to help them


Members of the SHS Competition Cheerleaders Team practiced on the beach at the Castle in the Sands Hotel in Ocean City, MD. Here they are seen perfecting their spectacular “basket toss” technique. –photo by Michelle Morris


reach their goal, the SHS Compet- itive Cheer team has organized a Family Movie Night event featur- ing “Wreck-It Ralph” at Somer- ville HS auditorium on Apr. 5 at 7:30 pm. Tickets are available the


night of the show for $5, or can be pre-purchased for $4. For info and advance purchases, contact Diane Stickel at 908-725-4957 or Diane Massa at 908-369-6685. –submit- ted by Ellen Kaplan


Schools Name Teachers of the Year


Jane Blaus


Branchburg schools have an- nounced their teachers of the year for 2012-2013.


Jane Blaus, speech and language specialist, has won recognition at Branchburg Central Middle School. Michael Clark, physical educa- tion teacher at Stony Brook School, has won recognition from both the school and the district.


Dawn Eelman, third grade teach- er, has won recognition from Whi- ton Elementary School.


There are two options for kids: Field Games Package for $12 per child – includes an opportunity to play soccer and other field games all supervised by BSC staff. Laser Tag/Arcade Package for $25 per child – includes two rounds of laser tag, a $10 arcade card, unlimited play maze time and field time. Both kids’ packages include McDonald’s, pizza, drinks and dessert. Pre-registration forms for the Spring Fling FUN’raiser are available at www.branchburgeducationfoundation.org and on Facebook at https://www. facebook.com/pages/Branchburg-Education-Foundation/290297994766. For more info, email befspringfling@gmail.com. –submitted by Liz Rogers


An effort by the New Jersey De- partment of Education to identify and encourage highly successful per- formance, the New Jersey Teacher of the Year program recognizes and honors the contributions of highly- effective classroom teacher leaders who possess a special talent for in- spiring a love of learning in students of all backgrounds and abilities. The process for selecting teach- ers of the year varies from district to district. The nomination process in the schools may involve input from


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In alphabetical order:


Michael Clark


teachers, parents and the principal. District teachers of the year are se- lected by a panel convened by the superintendent. The Branchburg winners are expected to be honored at an upcoming Board of Education meeting.


The Branchburg News asked prin- cipals for comments about the win- ners in their schools.


Dawn Eelman


BCMS Principal Matthew Bar- bosa wrote the following about Jane Blaus: “Mrs. Blaus is a speech and language specialist and has worked in Branchburg for 23 years. Dur- ing that time, she has worked with countless students in each of the district’s schools. Using her knowl- edge and degrees in English, Special


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