Iron-man trio win 50-and-over benefit hoops event Threesome was pillar of Wooden Nickel team


It's Sunday, sports fans, and that means it's "smorgasbrowse" time. For those of you new to this game, what I do is run a whole bunch of "Q's and A's," plus some notes, and wait for your response.

You may add, delete, criticize, praise, ask or answer anything you read here. To communicate, just dial up the 24-hour Sportsline, 647-2499, any time.

Let's start with a big surprise question:

* How about the Gunning's Crabhouse/Winner Distributing Co.-sponsored 50-and-over men's basketball team winning last

weekend's Baltimore City Hoops Tournament for the benefit of Cystic Fibrosis on the Oriole Park at Camden Yards parking lot?

Did you know that the three 50-and-over guys who performed an iron-man stunt in winning the championship over the favored Cloverdale team from the Druid Hill Park area in Baltimore led the Wooden Nickel to a perfect 10-0 record this past winter in the local league for senior hoopsters?

Calvin Etheridge of Arundel Hills, Paul Zimmerman of Pasadena and Sam Kniseley of Catonsville all played key roles in leading the Nickel to a league title and decided to give the Baltimore extravaganza a shot. Some 700 teams in various age groups and caliber of play competed for the worthwhile charity.

Etheridge, who manages the popular Gunning's Crabhouse in Brooklyn, teamed with the other two to play in Baltimore in what was a 3-on-3 tournament of four teams. Most teams had four players with one guy in reserve, but Bobby Lear tore up his ankle in practice, leaving the trio to play every minute.

Responding to the pressure, the guys went 1-1 on Saturday, but came back to win both games and the title on Sunday, 16-12, over Aaron Johnson-led Cloverdale. In the 50-and-over division, the first team to score 16 buckets or the team leading after a half-hour of play was declared the winner.

"It was rough out there, because we played without referees," said the 6-foot Etheridge, who played his high school hoops at Southern in Baltimore. "Things got so rough Sunday in the championship game that the tournament people had to call in a couple officials to call the game. It was a great experience, but I don't know if I would do it again."

* Can you believe that because Round One Promotions matchmaker Josh Hall said right here recently that boxer Chuck Sturm and his manager, Frank Gilbert, wanted to fight outside the county for more money, that Gilbert called Hall and told him Sturm never would fight here again?

"When that article got back to Frank Gilbert, he really gave me a lecture and put it to me, and said he would never fight for me again, and I can't understand why he was mad," said Hall. "I told him that all I did was tell what happened and the truth. So, anyway, I guess Sturm will never fight in Glen Burnie again."

Now, wouldn't that be too bad, considering that Hall only said the door is open for Chuck to fight at Michael's any time he wants and that he thought the Glen Burnie resident would benefit by fighting locally to build up his record (23-3-1) and possibly get a shot at a lucrative title shot? What's wrong with giving good advice?

* How about this remark from Joe Cannon Stadium supervisor Don Brooks on whether it is a good idea for the two local teams -- Severn Post 276 and the Pasadena Saints -- to play all of their games in the Continental Amateur Baseball Association 18-and-under World Series at the county's best facility?

"I don't think it is, and we here think that every team [16 total teams, 14 from all over the country, including California] that comes in here should get to play in Cannon twice," said Brooks. "The local teams don't draw that well."

* By the way, amateur baseball fans, did you know that the CABA 18-and-under World Series teams are expected to arrive today and attend a gala kick-off banquet at 8:30 p.m. at Michael's Eighth Avenue?

The CABA gets under way tomorrow at 9 a.m., with games at five sites -- Cannon Stadium in Harmans, Arundel High in Gambrills, Northeast High in Pasadena, Kinder Park in Severna Park and Sawmill Creek Park in Glen Burnie. Games run all day, with all 16 teams gathering in uniform for a festive opening-night ceremony at 6:30 p.m. tomorrow at Joe Cannon Stadium.

The Washington state No. 1 team entry from the Northwest part of the United States will meet Severn Legion in a 7 p.m. feature game following the official opening ceremonies. The CABA World Series runs through Aug. 3.

* With Severna Park Post No. 175 headed for the American Legion state tournament in Hagerstown, what kind of a chance does the team have of advancing to the Mid-Atlantic Regional in New Jersey?

"I think they have a great chance," said Mayo Post No. 226 skipper Bernie Walter. Walter's club was the only team to win the local league over the last five years until this season, when it was dethroned by Severna Park.

Two years ago, Mayo won the whole ball of wax, taking the national championship in Oregon, so when Walter gives an vTC opinion on what it takes, you should listen.

"Severna Park can hit," said Walter. "They've got seven guys in their lineup who can really swing the bat, and they should definitely win the state title and move on to the regional. When you get to that level, it's a matter of how good your pitching is and the Brooklawn, N.J., team will probably be the favorite."

It's Walter's opinion that the best pitcher on the Severna Park team of Coach Charlie Becker is Broadneck grad Jeff Vincent.

Vincent was The Baltimore Sun's All-Metro and the Anne Arundel County Sun's All-County shortstop, but he was the man who pitched fourth-seeded Broadneck High to a stunning, 5-4 upset of heavily favored and top-seeded Severna Park High in the Class 4A Region IV playoffs.

* Did you know that Mayo, accustomed to going to the state legion tournament, is playing this weekend in the state 18-and-under Dizzy Dean Tournament for the right to move on to the World Series in Boyton, Ga., beginning Friday and ending Aug. 7?

Mayo is playing in what is just a three-team, double-elimination tournament at Catonsville Community College, along with Harundale and the Yankee Rebels of Baltimore.

* How about congrats to Mayo first baseman Tim Giles and right-handed pitcher Brian Rolocut for being named to the National High School Baseball Coaches Association All-District II Team for their outstanding seasons at Arundel High this spring?

Rolocut, an All-Metro pitcher and the Anne Arundel County Sun Player of the Year after going 11-1 with an ERA of 0.77 and 132 strikeouts in only 72 1/3 innings, is headed for Miami Dade Community College in Florida.

Giles, who joined Rolocut on our All-County team as a junior, batted .400 with 12 extra-base hits and 29 RBI. The left-handed hitter, who Walter said has "the best swing we've ever had at Arundel High," was named the Babe Ruth State Player of the Year last summer.

* Are you interested in entering a high school-age team in the 10th annual Anne Arundel County Fall Baseball League?

If you are, there's a fall baseball organizational meeting at 5 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 2, at Sawmill Creek Park in Glen Burnie. If you have any questions, give league commissioner Frank "Jocko" Svoboda a call at 761-0642.

* Finally, did you Anne Arundel County Sports Hall of Fame members know that the "important" meeting scheduled for 7 p.m. tomorrow has been moved to a new site? The meeting will be held at Joe Cannon Stadium in order to give some of you a chance to see the CABA World Series opening ceremonies.

For information, call Susan at 760-6453 or Vicki at 222-1148.

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