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Port's Vikings baseball season gets into full swing starting this week with three games per week for the next five weeks. As we go to press, the Vikings will be engaged in back-to-back cross-over conference AII - AIV games with Hicksville. Port's next home games will be on Friday April 24 vs East Meadow and on Wednesday vs Baldwin. Both games start at 4 p.m.

Last week, Port played two non-league rescheduled games. On April 14 the Vikings trounced a hapless Hempstead team 16-4, and on April 16 the Vikings were humbled by Levittown Division 9-0. Neither game helped define Port's destiny for the year. Every team beats up on Hempstead ( a developmental team) and few teams beat the perennial Class B champions (Division). Port's record to date, is (0-2) league and (2-3) overall. Of the four teams competing against Port in Conference A IV only Herricks has managed to post wins in cross-over games against the stronger AII Conference teams. As a result Herricks leads the conference with a 3-0 record while Port, Elmont and Lawrence are 0-2.

Against Hempstead, Port's junior hurler Aaron Shkuda pitched a nifty 3-hitter and recorded nine strikeouts while gaining his first varsity win for Port. Brandon Kurz hurled three good innings against Levittown Division before three walks and a homerun in the fourth inning helped seal his fate. Mike Katz pitched two innings of relief in the losing cause. Port's batters were kept off balance by Division's ace hurler and managed just one scratch hit over seven innings.

It might be of interest to longtime Port residents that three golfers currently on the Pro-Tour circuit have roots that lead back to Port Washington. Len Mattice ('96 Best Putter) placing in the top 10-15 on the leader board in recent golf tournaments is the son of Otto Mattice. In the mid '40s, the Mattice family lived on South Street before moving to Roslyn. Len's aunt Dorothy Mattice Turner graduated from Port High in '49 and now lives in Venice FL. Her husband Clyde Turner (Port High '47) passed away two years ago.

Two young ladies on the women's golf tour, Danielle and Dina Ammaccapane currently hail from Arizona. However their dad Ralph Ammaccapane once played fastpitch softball with The Rosa baseball team in the local softball league which flourished in the mid-'60s. Many of Port's old-timers may remember eating clams or pizza and downing a couple of beers at Ralph's Restaurant which was located in the building previously occupied by Jimmy's Backyard, now DaMino's Restaurant.

Below is a ranking of sports participation by high schools in the U.S. and the number of participants. The data is derived from the Nat'l High School Athletic Assoc Pub. (1996)
Participation by Schools Participants (Rank)
1. Basketball 16,574 545,596 (2)
2. Track & field 14,505 454,645 (3)
3. Baseball 14,174 444,476 (4)
4. Football 13,004 957,573 (1)
9. Soccer 283,728 (5)
10. Swimming 4,852 81,000 (10)



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