This week Sidelines recaps a couple victories on the pocket billiards tables, and another title on the lacrosse pitch by a former resident on the Southeast Coast.
Helena pool players Jeff Boucher and Dan Hamper garnered championships in their respective divisions at the Eighth Annual Montana State Open 8-ball Pool Tournament in Butte recently.
The Men’s A Division was an all-capital city battle, with Boucher going up against Frank Kincl in the chipper after the pair worked their way to the finals in the field of 49 shooters. Boucher emerged victorious for his sixth State Open title in eight years.
Hamper competed in the Seniors Division, rising to the top of the leaderboard against 38 other players for his crown. He defeated former Helenan Lance Nelson in the finals. Helena's Tim Webster tied for fifth place in the same tourney.
Helena native Sam Maronick, who attended Kessler Elementary School until the fifth grade before moving to Greenville, South Carolina, in 2014, recently led the JL Mann High lacrosse team to the South Carolina State Championship.
Sam, whose parents are Joe and Katie (Butler) Surkamer and Dan Maronick, now of Missoula, began playing during the inaugural season of youth lacrosse in the capital city. His fourth grade Helena Huskies team was coached by Chris Romano and Bryan Taylor.
During the South Carolina 5A title game, Sam played the entire contest in the Patriots 8-5 victory over Wando, scoring a Hat Trick and garnering the Player of the Game award. The JL Mann senior was also selected to the SC all-state team as an attacker, while finishing the year ranked third in South Carolina in goals scored, and 16th in the nation.
Curt Synness can be reached at 406-594-2878 or firstname.lastname@example.org. He’s also on Twitter @curtsynness_IR