Senior Olympics: LA will send 30 athletes to state

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By Special to the Monitor

The Los Alamos Senior Olympic Games concluded with 30 local athletes participating and qualifying for the State Games.

The State Games will be held at New Mexico State University in Las Cruces July 29-Aug. 3.

At the local Games this year, 11 women and 19 men ages 50 to 87 competed. So far, 23 of the qualifiers have registered to compete in Las Cruces.

The most popular sport this year was shuffleboard with 10 registered participants. Horseshoes and table tennis each had eight participants.

In the 60-64 women’s singles shuffleboard competition, held at the Betty Ehart Senior Center indoor court, Ann ReVelle took first with Jackie Peckham finishing second.

ReVelle won 2 of 3 8-frame matches 47-26 and 71-1.

Other qualifiers in women’s singles were Yvonne Johnson, Joyce Blanco and Judy Dudziak.

Men’s singles shuffleboard qualifiers included Tom Pigott, Irving Johnson, John Warren and Don Dudziak.

The Warren-Dudziak match went to three games, with Dudziak winning the first 65-8 and Warren coming back to take the next two 27-1 and 57-16.

In shuffleboard players can lose 10 points whenever their disk ends up in the “kitchen,” so it’s possible to finish with a negative score.

ReVelle teamed up for doubles with her husband Doug and took first place over the Blanco/Peckham doubles team, winning 2 of 3 games 75-51 and 101-11.

The doubles teams of Yvonne Johnson/Irving Johnson and Judy Dudziak/Don Dudziak also qualified.

Most events at the Senior Olympics are in separate women’s and men’s divisions or mixed doubles, but shuffleboard is an exception. A doubles team can consist of two women, two men or one woman and one man.

Horseshoes was played on the court at the White Rock Senior Center.

Qualifiers in women’s singles were Blanco and Johnson. Blanco won their exhibition match — each woman was in a different age group — 17-6.

Local rules allow for pitching 15 innings. At the State Games most matches will be double-elimination with games to 21 points.

In the 60-64 age group, ReVelle topped Patricia Jakubowski 12-4. In the men’s division Johnson, Warren, Abel Castillo and Cy Jakubowski all completed exhibition matches to qualify for the State Games. Johnson won his match against Warren 15-1 and Castillo bested Jakubowski 22-4.

In women’s 8-ball pool, ReVelle and Blanco qualified in an exhibition match with ReVelle taking 2 of 3 games.

The New Mexico Senior Olympics have added a new Recreational Event this year: huachas (washers) which is a popular pastime at picnics, tailgate parties and reunions. Cy Jakubowski made and donated two sets of washer boards which will be available for play and practice at the Betty Ehart and White Rock Senior Centers.

In the local Games, three women competed in the 60-64 age group.

In single elimination games, Nancy Bearss took first, winning 16-9 over ReVelle and 25-13 over Jakubowski, who finished in second.

In the men’s exhibition matches, Castillo put on a clinic besting Warren 21-1 and Jakubowski 23-6.