World Series of Bocce returns Thursday after 2-year hiatus
ROME — The teams are registered and the forecast is excellent for the World Series of Bocce, which starts Thursday and runs through Sunday at the Toccolana Club, 1412 E. Dominick St. The 47th world series will take place after two years without the event due to COVID-19.
The event typically has 100 or more Open Division teams and another 30-plus for the Women’s Division. This year there are 98 teams in open and 33 for women’s. “We’re almost back to normal. But we’re still the biggest in the nation,” said Joseph Mellace, part of the organizing team at the club. “Those of us that have been involved in organizing the event always had a feeling we’d be about 100 in open and 30 in women’s.”
Event co-organizer Mike Ferlo said: “Any time you’re near 100 teams, that’s great. That’s a big response.” He added, “The numbers are exactly where they were, maybe a bit short.”
The Al Orbinati Memorial World Series Warm-Up Tournament Saturday had 16 teams. “The warmup went great. Good turnout,” Ferlo said. Mellace echoed that.
The team of Eddie Emmanuele, Russell Johnson, Mark Lanzi and Todd Lanzi placed first; the squad of Fred Fox, Nico Fox, Larry Giardino and Lenny Giardino finished second; and the team of Ferlo, Mellace, Frank Costello and Phil Impicciatore placed third.
Opening ceremonies kick off at 5:30 p.m. Thursday, with Women’s Division games starting an hour later.
Here are the opening round matchups:
- 6:30 p.m.: Rizio & Calandra Plumbing vs. David Bruce’s American Martial Arts. Studio 365 vs. Bostwick’s Liquors. Lock City Ladies vs. Joey’s @ 307 & B-52 Bagels.
- 7:30 p.m.: The Back Nine Restaurant vs. Copper City Chiropractic. DB Allen Insurance vs. We’re Back. Toccolana Club vs. Vine & Fig.
- 8:30 p.m.: James Mitsubishi of Rome vs. The SMS Girls. Virago vs. MOD MD. Port Jackson Ladies vs. the winner of Rizio & Calandra Plumbing and David Bruce’s American Martial Arts.
Friday’s Women’s Division games:
- 6 p.m.: Franklin Hotel vs. LC Photography. NYE Auto Group vs. Vacca Financial.
- 6:30 p.m.: Viviani Law Firm vs. Bill Herrig’s Auto. Copper City Brewing vs. DeSalvo’s Restaurant and Catering.
- 7 p.m.: The Mill vs. Kenny’s Home Improvements. D&D Carpets vs. Sweat X.
- 7:30 p.m.: Eye Care Center of Rome vs. Rome Daily Sentinel. CNY Sunrooms & Windows vs. 7 Hamlets Brewing Company.
Open Division play starts at 5 p.m. Friday. Here are the opening round games:
- 5 p.m.: Don’s Ford vs. Seneca Falls Plus. Matrice Club #2 vs. 3 Franks and a Phil. Catullo Prime Meats vs. Bob’s Barber Shop. Toccolana Club #2 vs. Nunn & Harper Funeral Home. Italia Restaurant vs. Adelio’s. Belleville Bocce Club #7 vs. Tomassi’s Posse. Worthington #1 vs. Old School Bar & Grill. Versace Law vs. ABV Contractors. Victory Motors vs. IFH Club. Pazdur Painting Inc. vs. Lock City Rollers. American Bocce Club vs. Tri-State Bocce. Woddman Life vs. Miller. Country Farm & Market vs. The Grand Rehabilitation Center. Gulla Graphics vs. Anelli Bocce. Rizio & Calandra Plumbing vs. The Nitwitts.
- 5:30 p.m.: Tony’s Pizzeria vs. Pontelandolfo Club. Ferlo’s Bakery vs. St. John the Baptist Church. Bottini’s Funeral Home vs. Mopes Around.
- 5:45 p.m.: Sorry Bastards vs. Balls of Dusting. Sons of Italy #1 vs. Cianfrocco Masonry.
- 6 p.m.: DiMezzo’s Pasticiotti’s vs. Waterloo 2000. Waterside #15 vs. DBJ Wealth Management. NY Life #7 vs. East Haven I&A #2.
- 6:15 p.m.: Turin Tech #2 vs. Dirty Inches. East Haven I&A #3 vs. Production Painting.
- 6:30 p.m.: Scorpions vs. Dukolana Club. Ralph Bocce O vs. Short Street Bocce Club. CT Bocce P.H vs. Hubs Auto.
- 6:45 p.m.: Club Molisani #8 vs. AMJ Construction. Allstate Insurance vs. Team Bellini.
The games starting from 7:15 to 10 p.m. include winners of the above matches.
Play continues Saturday, with tournament finals on Sunday.
The World Series will include several contests, such as the pointing contests and the sixth annual Facciolo Brothers Spock Shot Challenge on Thursday.
There will be local bands performing and traditional Italian food cooked up by The Franklin Hotel.
This week’s forecast looks ideal for the event. Thursday’s high is expected to be 78 and Friday’s should be 80. The high Saturday and Sunday should be about 84. One good sign: no rain is expected. “The weather’s going to be great. I think we’re going to do fine. I think attendance will be up, as it always is,” Ferlo said.
Ferlo added: “A lot of good food. A lot of good company. We’re expecting a record crowd again. I’m sure the motels and hotels around here are all booked. Rome should see a good week.”
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