BY BOB WEINER
For Your Niskayuna
Coach Laura Favata’s three-step plan (fundamentals, lane reading and equipment) for the Niskayuna boys’ bowling team is right on target.
The Silver Warriors worked on fundamentals and dealing with pressure situations during the 2016-17 campaign. The results, including winning the Suburban Council Championship without a senior in the lineup, were impressive. Now, she’s ready to up the ante for next year.
“Our goal with this group is to get to the sectionals next year,” Favata said. “I’ve coached most of these boys since they were in seventh or eighth grade. This year, we worked on their release and their balance at the line. Next year, we will work more on reading the lanes for all the changing oil conditions there are. That’s step No. 2. Once we’ve got that down, they will need to upgrade their equipment, so they will have the right ball for the right condition.”
Favata, the former captain of her bowling team at Catholic Central High School and a former junior league standout herself, said she was not surprised that her young team accomplished as much as it did in the highly competitive SC.
“Three of my bowlers competed in the Joey Schmidt Junior Pro-Scoring league, and two others competed in the Capital District Youth Scholarship Tour events,” Favata said. “I’ve got two more scheduled to compete in a Sport bowling league in May. They want to learn, and they are all improving every day.”
Led by junior co-captains Dominick Favata (225 average) and Marcus Manzoni (204), the Niskayuna lineup included juniors Josh Pauly (190) and Lucas Neufeld (173), sophomores Chris Salamone (199), Nick Armstrong (189), Bradley Burchell (184), David Mennillo (183) and Daniel Palmer (181) and freshman Connor Shoemaker (180). Manzoni rolled his second career perfect game, while Favata finished second individually at the Rotterdam Invitational (244-699) and first individually at the Schenectady Invitational (279-745).
Along with its huge win at the Suburban Council Championships, where the Silver Warriors averaged 221 and won by 160 pins, Niskayuna also picked up big wins over Mohonasen and perennial-power Colonie during the first half of the season. The team’s top five bowlers averaged 195 or better, and the Silver Warriors finished above the .500 mark in the SC at 9-6. Dominick Favata earned first-team Suburban Council all-star honors. Manzoni was named to the third team. Salamone, Pauly and Armstrong were honorable mention.
“The goals for this team are already set for next season,” Favata said. “We finished ninth out of 21 teams in the sectionals this year. Next year, our goal is to win.”