Sachem North’s Amanda Naujokas has bowled her way to the top of Long Island.
At last year’s state tournament individual event, the freshman rolled a team-best 1,176 for the Sachem district team, good for fifth place and a 215.63 season average.
After the graduation of North Babylon’s Skylar McGarrity, Naujokas, now a sophomore, holds the No. 1 spot.
Sachem coach Diane Groneman said Naujokas brings leadership. “She has a great personality and gets along really well with our girls,” Groneman said. “She is a great example for our young bowlers. She goes out of her way to do the extra.”
Naujokas qualified for the USA Developmental team this past summer at the Junior Gold Tournament, and will participate next June. This offseason, Naujokas received lessons from coach Leslie Bohn and improved her footwork with Doug Kent.
Manetta always working
During her offseason, Comsewogue’s Hannah Manetta rolled a new personal-best series, 879, for three games in a youth league, including two 300 games. The series was sanctioned and recognized by the United States Bowling Congress (USBC).
“She is the hardest-working bowler that I’ve ever had in all my years,” Comsewogue coach Brian Frimmer said. “She’s constantly working on her game during practice and after practice.”
Comsewogue finished at 8-2 and placed fifth in the Suffolk Tournament last season.
“I’m really excited about this season,” the junior said. “My game has changed, I’m making way more spares and my average in preseason is a lot higher than last year. I also have gotten a lot of experience over the summer in tournaments.”
Bocamazo the bowler
For the defending Suffolk champion East Islip, Julia Bocamazo possesses the second-highest average.
“She’s a workaholic,” coach Harold Cooley said. “The only sport she does is bowling, and that’s all she does. When you see her, she’s always got a bowling ball in her hand. She’s a student of the game.”
Senior Melissa Mavrich ranks fifth for the Redmen. “She works really hard and is a good team leader,” Cooley said.
Skalacki like a veteran
Despite being a freshman, Hannah Skalacki of Middle Country is an experienced veteran. She opened the season with a 280 game.
“I just come home from school and just put my stuff down and go straight to practice,” Skalacki said. “The boys had a match today and I stayed after and cheered them on.”
Skalacki, who has been on varsity since seventh grade, practices during the weekends to improve. And during the summer, she joined the boys for varied competition.
“She’s just a competitor,” coach Armando Dominguez said. “She’s a perfectionist. She’s an extraordinary talent and a gifted bowler who comes through in the clutch . . . To do it at that age against seniors, and girls who are older, it is just very extraordinary.
TEAMS TO WATCH
n East Islip
Coming off a fifth-place finish at states, the Redmen will be led by junior Bocamazo and Mavrich, along with Jenny Murphy, Julianna Spina and Amanda Kreush. Cooley expects Spina, who averaged 198.07 last year, to average better than 200 this season.
Coming off a 9-1 season, Middle Country averaged 208 in the Suffolk Tournament as a team and placed second for the fourth straight year. This year, Dominguez has four seniors who have been on the team since seventh grade.
After a seventh-place finish in the state tournament, Syosset returns Rebecca Lee and Jackie Tang, now seniors.
“They are both tremendously experienced and they are both excellent teammates and leaders,” coach Wayne Berbert said. “They are both very helpful with the younger bowlers and they are very much up to the challenge to helping us get back to states.”
Lee bowled a high-game of 204 on Dec. 4, and Tang had a 200.
n Small-School Division
In the newly initiated Small-School division, Sewanhaka will be a force in Nassau. Junior Jahnia Phillips had a 197 average last year, and made the individual All-Star tournament. During this year’s season opener, she had a high game of 193 and a 511 series. In their second year as a program, Seaford brings back Paige Donovan, who rolled a 161.
Returning champion Kellenberg brings back tournament MVP Daisha Howard, who averaged 163 last season in the CHSAA Individual Tournament. St. Anthony’s Francesca Rossi, who won the CHSAA tournament, had a 183 season average. St. John the Baptist’s Katie LoPiccolo averaged 169.