The No. 7 ranked CCRI Knights have found out who their opponent will be in the first game for the double-elimination NJCAA Division II Baseball World Series in Enid, Okla. The Knights will be taking on the Wolf Pack of Madison College, from Madison, Wis. on Saturday at 1 p.m,
The Knights are currently 33-11 on the year, while the Wolf Pack is 43-11. The winner of their game will move on to face the winner of the game between No. 2 Heartland and No. 8 Catawba Valley Community College.
If CCRI were to reach that point, that game would be held on Monday at 8 p.m. If CCRI were to lose to Madison, it would play on Sunday at 6 p.m. in an elimination game against the loser of the Heartland-Catawba Valley game.
The World Series runs from May 26 to June 2. This is the Knights first trip to the NJCAA World Series since 1996.
To find out more about the NJCAA World Series please go to http://www.njcaa.org/.
Knights finish second at nationals
The CCRI tennis team entered the final day of the 2012 National tournament at Collin County Community College in Plano, Texas with members of the team still in the tournament for the first time in the school’s history. All six team members were in competition in at least one flight in some form. By the end of the tournament, CCRI had the national champion in first doubles with Michael Fallone (North Providence) and Anthony Lamborghini (Smithfield) and No. 6 singles with Nick Morin (North Smithfield). In addition, Ross Bouchard (South Kingstown) earned Second Team All-American honors for his second-place finish, and the third flight doubles team of Morin and Nicholas Elkind-DeAngelis (Northborough, Mass.) also earned Second-Team All-American honors. In addition, Timothy Holzinger (Foster) won the No. 5 singles back draw finals, earning the Knights a critical half point, which helped them earn a second-place finish as a team. Rounding out the Knights accomplishments for the week was head coach Deb Panzica earning NJCAA Division III Coach of the Year after the Knights’ best ever finish at the nationals.
The Knights still had a mathematical opportunity to win the championship as well, starting the day with five points in play while being just 3.5 points behind the day three leaders, the Gloucester County College Roadrunners. The final day of the tournament was held at the host site of Collin County Community College. It also included umpires in the chairs of each match, overseeing the matches on court.
In the flight six singles main draw final, Morin took to the courts against the scrappy Robert Mastrantoni of SUNY Adirondack. Morin had upset the No. 1 seed in the first round of the flight, and Mastrantoni had upended the No. 2 seed in the same round. Morin is not unaccustomed to big challenges. When he was six years old, he was diagnosed with Leukemia. He battled through eight months of treatment and defeated that opponent, so the trip out on to the court was a sweet one indeed. Morin battled on the court as well, defeating his Timber Wolf opponent 6-1 and 6-2 in a match that was actually much closer than the score suggests. Morin earned a point for the team and was named the first national champion at any level of tennis for CCRI.
In flight one doubles, the No. 3 seed Fallone and Lamborghini, having defeated the No. 1 seeded pairing of Judd Bahoui and Pasha Shapouri of Nassau Community College in three tough sets in the semifinals, faced off against the No. 2 seeded pair of AJ Moore and Donovan Vassalotti of 2012 National Champion Gloucester County College. The Knights dominated from start to finish, completing the match in less than 50 minutes in a display of supremacy that, in the words of the chair umpire, “had not been seen before in this tournament, especially in the finals.” The victory earned the Knights another point, and it earned Fallone and Lamborghini the titles of National Champions.
When it was all said and done Gloucester CC came away as national champions with 34 points. CCRI finished in second with 29.5, while Nassau was third with 29.
Knights finish second, with Lovechio as medalist at golf regional
The CCRI Knights golf team continued participation in the Region XXI Tournament on Wednesday at New England Country Club in Chicopee. The Knights finished second in the region with a team score of 651, losing to defending regional champions Dean College with a score of 638.
Three Knights qualified for the NJCAA Division III National Tournament at Chautauqua Country Club in Mayville, N.Y. from June 4-8. They are Anthony Lovechio (South Kingstown) who was the tournament medalist with a two-day score of 152 – which included the lowest round of all players of 70 on Wednesday – Patrick O’Connor (North Kingstown) with a 158 and Andrew Schultheis (East Lyme, Conn.) with a 172. Lovechio and O’Connor were named All-Region XXI.
Final team standings for the tournament were Dean College with 638, CCRI with 651, Springfield Tech with 723 and Holyoke CC with 736.
CCRI’s Hajinian honored by R.I. Armenian community
CCRI men's basketball assistant coach Sam Hajinian was honored Friday night May 11 at the 43rd Annual Saints Sahag & Mesrob Sports Banquet. Hajinian received the organization’s annual Special Recognition Award. This honor was given based upon his dedication and involvement with the R.I. Armenian community, as well as his outstanding contributions to the CCRI men's basketball program which led to CCRI making an appearance in this past season's NJCAA DII National Championship game. Hajinian’s speech upon receiving this award focused on his love of basketball, coaching at CCRI and all of the people in his life who support his efforts. Back in 1996, Hajinian's senior year at Cranston High School East, he was the recipient of the organization’s Rhode Island Armenian Athlete of the Year Award. CCRI head basketball coach Rick Harris was a guest at the ceremony back in 1996 and this year was the feature guest speaker at the banquet. The focus of his talk was focused on surrounding yourself with positive people, aiming high in regards to setting your goals and reaching out to help others.
Other award recipients during the banquet included: Jillian DeSimone of Lincoln High School, Benjamin Handanyan of Mount St. Charles and Robbie Buehrer of Bishop Hendricken High Schoo,l who all received the Armenian Athlete of the Year Awards/Charles Yaghoobian Jr. Memorial Awards. The Vaughen Avedesian Memorial Scholarship recipients included Susan Chakmakian of Brown University, Christina S. Parnagian of Assumption College and Talene Taraksian of University of Rhode Island.