Westhill Girls VolleyballSarah Schwartz, Sara Galante, Gianna Militi, Kate Heinrich, Jill Wicks, coach Karla Prince
Christian Brothers Academy Girls Swimming(from left) Lauren Kelly, Kaitlyn Bushnell, Sophia Silver, Ally Howard, Kayla Newman on the October 19, 2019 Inside High School Show.
Allyson Iserau, Cora Keohane, Emma Herrmann at Inside High School Sports Show.
Here are the top 10 topics for the November 23 edition of the Inside High School Sports Show…
1. We have some state champions in Section III thanks to last weekend’s events, starting in boys soccer where, at Middletown, Skaneateles earned its second Class B state crown, the other taking place in 2010. First, the Lakers rallied to knock off unbeaten, state no. 1-ranked Haverling 3-1 in the semifinals, with Owen Cheney scoring both second-half goals to break the tie. Then, in Sunday’s title game against Center Moriches, the two sides went through regulation and one overtime period 0-0. Just when it looked like it would end in co-champions, Cheney scored in the second OT period and the Lakers won 1-0 to take the state championship – and it only had three seniors on its roster, which could make for a 2020 encore.
2. Even more dominant in its run to a state championship was the Poland girls soccer team. Never once did the Tornadoes leave the top spot in the state Class D rankings, and after it blazed to the sectional title undefeated, Poland continued its domination in the state playoffs, capped by a final four where, in the semifinals at Homer High School, it shut out Northville 5-0, and then unleashed a devastating attack on Avoca in Sunday’s state final at SUNY-Cortland. Again the Tornadoes scored five goals — in the first half, maybe a record for any state finals game. Poland went on to defeat Avoca 6-1 to add a second state championship to the one it earned back in 2012 and run its unbeaten streak to 42 consecutive matches.
3. Then there were the cross country runners that cleaned up during their state championships at SUNY-Plattsburgh. F-M swept the boys and girls Class A races, with the girls avenging a one-point defeat to Saratoga Springs a year ago, while in girls Class C Camden emerged as the champions and Beaver River dominated in boys Class D to repeat its 2018 title. Individually, Tully’s Brooke Rauber took her fourth straight state girls Class D race, Camden’s Elizabeth Lucason outlasted several South Lewis runners in girls Class C and Skaneateles’ Caleb Bender beat everyone in boys Class C. Section III also won five of the eight team competitions thanks to their deep pools of individual stars, and CBA was second in boys Class C.
4. With another dose of high drama, the C-NS football team kept itself alive for a state Class AA championship. In the regional final against Corning, the Northstars surrendered a 21-8 halftime lead and trailed the Hawks by one, 22-21, before it put together another clutch fourth-quarter drive, mixing runs and a big J.J. Razmovski pass to Adron Pafford before Andrew Osier kicked a 19-yard field goal on the final play of the game to beat Corning 24-22. For the third year in a row, C-NS is in the state semifinals, where Lancaster beat them in 2017 and Aquinas did so in 2018. Now another Rochester team, McQuaid, opposes the Northstars on Saturday – but the game is at Bragman Stadium, which gives C-NS a true home-field advantage.
5. Carthage is the other Section III football team still chasing a state championship. Though it took a while for the Comets to take control of last Friday’s regional final against Union-Endicott, it did so by the second half and prevailed 38-14 over the Tigers. Carthage improved to 10-1 overall as Fombo Azah remained the Comets’ engine, the tailback gashing U-E for 221 yards on the ground and scoring three touchdowns. In order for Carthage to have a chance at earning its first-ever state championship on Thanksgiving weekend at the Dome, it will have to beat Section V champion Canandaigua Friday at C-NS’s Bragman Stadium in what promises to be a competitive and exciting state semifinal between the Comets and Braves.
6. Three other Section III football champions did not make it out of the regional round, though. Lowville had the best chance in Class C, pushing Susquehanna Valley to the fourth quarter tied before a pair of turnovers proved costly for the Red Raiders in a 44-36. Solvay, in Class B, found Chenango Forks too much as the Blue Devils scored 34 unanswered points in the first half and went on to defeat the Bearcats 48-15, while in Class D Frankfort-Schuyler got overwhelmed by Tioga in a 43-14 loss. The three at-large state tournament teams also lost, Utica Proctor in AA falling to New Rochelle 21-7 despite being tied in the fourth quarter, while Auburn (Class A) lost to Rye 49-13 and Waterville (Class D) fell to Tuckahoe 12-6.
7. Two other girls soccer teams fell just short of a first-ever state title, as in Class AA Fayetteville-Manlius beat Massapequa 2-1 in the semifinals but dropped the title game 1-0 to defending champion Monroe-Woodbury. Central Valley Academy in Class B had an even more painful ending, leading Pleasantville 2-0 late in the state final before surrendering a trio of late goals in the final minutes, one in the waning seconds, to fall 3-2. J-D was again denied in Class A, a lone early goal all the difference in a 1-0 defeat to Shoreham-Wading River, which came just hours after the J-D boys soccer team’s unlikely run to the state final four ended in Middletown with a 2-0 defeat to Greece Athena in the semifinals.
8. The girls volleyball regional finals last Saturday had two successful endings for Section III teams. Baldwinsville finally broke through in Class AA by sweeping Shenendehowa, while Westhill, still undefeated and defending its state title, got a sweep over Honeoye Falls-Lima. Both now go to the state final four in Glens Falls, a feat that the other Section III teams could not quite match. J-D, though playing on its home court in Class A, was swept by Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake, a long-time powerhouse. The magical run of Skanetaeles in Class C was halted in three sets by a terrific team from Portville (Section VI), while LaFayette, in the Class D regional final, suffered a straight-set loss to Galway.
9. It was quite a pair of boys volleyball regional championship matches last Saturday night at F-M. In Division II, J-D twice trailed Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake, but won a close second set and then, down again, rallied to get to a fifth set, where it took out the Spartans to earn a shot at the state championship this Saturday in Albany. C-NS, entering the matach 21-0, badly wanted to make that trip, too, and after losing the first set to Shenendehowa did win the next two sets to go in front in the regional final. The Plainsmen rallied to win the fourth and then, staging another comeback in the fifth set, pulled it out 16-14, a brtual end to what the Northstars hoped would be a run to a first-ever state championship.
10. And this week brings us the state girls swimming championships at Ithaca College. Following Section III meets on November 8 where F-M (Class A), CBA (Class B) and Skaneateles (Class C) took home team titles, the top individuals, including CBA’s Lauren Kelly, J-D’s Amelia Hesler and Mexico’s Alexa von Holtz, will each look to jump into the top 10 of their respective races, though getting to the medal podium might prove too much. There’s also strong relay teams that CBA and F-M possess, while in diving the duo of senior Madeline Thorne and freshman Kaitlyn Carroll posted the two best scores of the season at the sectional meet and lead the local contingent, Carroll having dove in this same meet in 2018.
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