The Top 24 finals of Jim Elliott’s 47th New Year Singles Classic on Saturday at Rab’s Country Lanes will be a family affair for the McAuliffe clan.
Three McAuliffe family members, Tim Sr. and his sons, Tim Jr. and Sean, cracked the Top 24 list as two weekends of qualifying came to a close Sunday at Country.
Tim Jr.’s booming 836, rolled on the first weekend of qualifying, went unsurpassed, giving the 43-year-old righty the top seed. Tim Jr. won this event in 2014.
But both Sean, 35, and dad Tim Sr., 69, the former proprietor of the now defunct Victory Lanes, didn’t want Tim Jr. to have all the fun by himself and qualified 17th and 18th, respectively, checking in with series of 727 and 724.
“It’s so awesome,” said Tim Jr. about competing in the same final field with his father and younger brother. He said it’s the second time it has happened. “Sean called me with the good news (Sunday) night. I’m glad I have a first-round bye so I can avoid my dad until the later rounds. He’s money.”
Sean has been to the finals of this event numerous times, but has yet to win it all. He’s happy, however, to be competing with his dad and brother this time out.
“It’s an honor to represent our bowling family in any tournament,” said Sean. “I’ve bowled my brother Tim a bunch of times — which I have the better record, I might I add — but never my dad 1 on 1 in a tournament. They have both challenged me to always get better in any sport growing up and it will be all business if we do happen to bowl one another but emotions will be high before and after. It would be a dream to see one of them in the final match.”
Proud wife and mom Laurie McAuliffe, who works at Country, will be watching the event with great interest and some angst.
“I think she will be rooting for me. I’m her favorite,” said Tim Jr. with a laugh. “I think she has a Team McAuliffe shirt (from past events) so she will be pulling for all of us.”
Mike Galeotti (786) qualified in the second spot with a 786, while unprecedented six-time NYSC champ George Cretella (780) finished tied for third with Steve Soss, who won this event in 2020.
“George is like Tom Brady (with all those titles,” said Tim Jr. “And if I win this year I’ll be like Patrick Mahomes, chasing George’s record.”
In all, the top eight qualifiers receive first-round byes of the five-game, head-to-head match-play finals format.
Other powerhouses in the scratch finals are past champs Dan Dunleavy, Don Pendleton and Joe Lampariello and Joe Gentile, Joe LaBargo Jr. and Thomas Hollywood Jr.
BOWLER …………..NET SCORE
(* DENOTES SQUAD LEADERS)
- TIM McAULIFFE JR. 836*
- MIKE GALEOTTI 786*
- GEORGE CRETELLA 780*
- STEVE SOSS 780*
- NICK ABBATE JR. 779
- DANIEL COSTANTINO 766*
- DON PENDELTON 761*
- JOE GENTILE 760
- JOE LAMPARELLO 755*
- MIKE GIOVINAZZO 754
- THOMAS HOLLYWOOD JR. 745*
- DAN DUNLEAVY 741*
- CAMERON LAPLANT 740
- JEFFREY MARTIN 736
- KEN CEDEL 733*
- JOHN WINTERS SR. 728
- SEAN McAULIFFE 727*
- TIM McAULIFFE SR. 724*
- PAULA MEDURI 723
- KEVIN NG 723
- JOE LABARGO JR. 712*
- BILL SALVATORE 687*
- KEN RUSSO 679*
- ANDREW LINK III 676*
Note: all averages must be verified