Random notes and thoughts following a weekend that started off feeling like summer and ended very much fall-like:

The atmosphere Friday night at Middletown South told you it was not just another football game as there were as many members of the media on the sidelines and in the press box as I have ever seen at a game before. The matchup between visiting Toms River North and the Eagles did not live up to what some had hoped because the Mariners took control early and just never looked back.

As the saying goes “you can’t teach speed” and North had too much of it and now owns the longest winning streak in the shore at 17 games heading into this Friday’s annual “civil war” showdown with Toms River South.

Many of you who have been listening to me or reading my blogs for some time are well aware that I’m a longtime Penn State supporter and fan and the father of two Nittany Lion graduates.  So as you might expect I’m still a little bit on Cloud 9 following Penn State’s biggest football win in years Saturday night when they knocked off #2 ranked Ohio State in what was a very Happy Valley.

My phone blew up throughout the evening, my daughter was in tears and the Twitter world went crazy.  It was even better because five former Shore Conference players were a significant part of the victory: Garrett Sickels, Mike Gesicki, Manny Bowen, Saeed Blacknall and Chris Gulla.

The win brought big smiles to the faces of former Penn Stater’s Chip LaBarca and Frank Gianetti, who are current assistant coaches at Wall and Toms River East respectively.

Central Regional has a new head coach for their girls’ basketball program as Dana Cerullo was named to that position late last week.  A former assistant at both Barnegat and Central, Cerullo replaces John Truhan who stepped down last month to become an assistant at Caldwell University.

The former Dana Danziger was an outstanding player at Point Borough High School and then Utica College.  She is currently a 9th grade Guidance Counselor at Central.