Bocce takes a roll closer to states while celebrating the graduating class


Knight Crier

United as one: The Unified Bocce team gathered for a a picture in the center of the Navy gym celebrating their win

Entering the gym lobby Friday afternoon, you could feel a sense of excitement. Students began to line up, holding flowers and celebrating each other. Entering the gym, the bleachers were filled with students, teachers, and families excited to celebrate the graduating class lined up outside the doors and, of course, ready for some Bocce. 

The North Penn Unified Bocce team (2-0) took on Upper Perk Friday, winning three of the four games and advancing to a 2-0 record. 

Before the games began, each senior and post-12 graduate was introduced and ran through the gym as the crowd cheered them all on. 

“It has all been so exciting, and I’m happy I have met all these new people,” Captain Jimmy Shea exclaimed. 

After the introductions, the first games began for both the Columbia and Navy teams. Columbia scored one point in the first frame, and Navy scored two, with the effort led by David Mumford’s first solid roll. 

The second frame made both games more interesting. Upper Perk scored in the Columbia game, making the game closer than the Knights would’ve liked. After two frames, Columbia was tied 1-1, and the Navy team had a more significant lead of 2-0. 

In the third frame, it was all Upper Perk. The Indians scored two points against Navy and one against Columbia, taking the lead in the Columbia game and cutting the lead in the Navy game to only one. In the fourth frame, both games ended tied with the score in the Navy game, 3-3, and the Columbia game, 2-2.  

In the fifth frame of the Navy game, Upper Perk scored two points, sealing their win in the first game 5-2. The Columbia game was a different story. North Penn broke the tie with a few huge rolls making the score 5-2 and adding another point in the sixth frame. The Indians answered with four massive points tying the game back up and sending it to a tiebreaker. 

The tiebreaker came down to the last roll, as senior Katie Mumford had an incredible roll, landing close to the Pallino and pushing another Knights ball closer. The Knights won the tiebreaker and won the Knights’ first game of the match 8-6. 

After a brief half-time, the second game began. Shea had a close first roll in the first frame for Columbia, causing Upper Perk to challenge. The Indians won the challenge along with the first point leaving the score 1-0 Upper Perk. In the Navy match, The Knights took the first point leading 1-0 after the first frame.   

Captain Jimmy Shea starting of the game by rolling the Pallino. (Marissa Leibowitz)

In the second frame, Upper Perk extended their lead against Columbia 2-0 and scored two against Navy taking the lead 2-1. The third frame was a big one for both Columbia and Navy. Columbia started with another great roll from Shea, followed by his teammates Luke Chevoor and captain Nick Luppinacci, scoring three points and taking a 3-2 lead over the Indians.

“I was so nervous seeing the big crowd, and it was all so exciting,” Shea admitted. 

In the Navy game, the first couple of rolls were too far until Devin Anderson used her roll to push the Pallino back, giving the Knights three points and making the score 4-2 after the third frame.

In the Columbia game, the Knights scored two more points in the fourth frame, and the Indians scored one in the fifth, trying to return from a two-point deficit. The Knights were able to seal the comeback after the fifth frame pushing the Knights ahead 2-1 in the match. 

In the fourth frame for the Navy team, the Knights scored another point. In the fifth frame, the Indians answered back with two points of their own, making the score a close 5-4 going into the final frame. 

In the two-minute warning, the Knights came up big with two incredible rolls to win the game 7-4 pushing the Knights ahead with a 3-1 final in their last home match of the year.  

“We still have a couple of meets left, but it’s definitely sad it’s our last home meet. The turnout to the home meets have been great, so it was nice to have a lot of fans that came to watch everyone,” Luppinacci said.

All seniors and post-12 graduates smiling faces hanging up to celebrate the graduating class! (Marissa Leibowitz)

With success the Knights have been having, the only natural reaction is to look for the path to states.

“With this win, we are 2-0 now, and we can’t lose a lot of games to make states. We kinda need every win, so every win really does count,” Lupinacci said. “Our next meet is soon, and all we can do is keep winning because we want to make states again, and that’s been our goal all season.”

“We are just looking to get better, better, and better and to focus,” Shea explained.