AFLAC Amazing Athlete: Shawn Mayes, Westhill boys basketball. It was Mayes who earned Most Valuable Player honors as the Warriors claimed the state Class B championship in Glens Falls by defeating Newark and Catholic Central.
Byrne Dairy Prime Performer: Pete Fiorini, a graduate of Baldwinsville lacrosse who netted a goal for SU men’s lacrosse during its 22-6 victory over St. Bonaventure on March 21.
Empower Federal Credit Union Rewarding Effort: Jameson Bucktooth, LaFayette boys lacrosse. Bucktooth’s 113 points from 62 goals and 51 assists makes him the top returning scorer in Section III this spring.
Ethan Allen Award of Excellence: Freddy Fowler, Liverpool boys basketball. Fowler had 14 points and almost hit the game-winning shot in regulation during a 57-55 overtime defeat to North Rockland in the state Class AA semifinals March 17.
Fitness Forum/Ultimate Goal/Sports 481 Fabulous Effort: Jack Byrnes, Cazenovia baseball. Byrnes recorded an 0.79 earned run average in the 2022 season, and he returns for his senior season having thrown 62 innings a year ago.
Holbrook Heating and Air Conditioning Outstanding Athlete: Luke Gilmartin, Westhill boys basketball. Gilmartin did it all in the Warriors’ 63-36 win over Newark in the state Class B semifinals getting 12 points, 13 rebounds, seven assists and four steals.
Mooney Marketing Group/Bristol 7 Enterprises Major Performance: Zach Philipkoski, New Hartford boys basketball. The Spartans lost 58-48 to Tappan Zee in the state Class A semifinals March 17 in Glens Falls but Philipkoski still managed 27 points.
Nye Automotive Mark of Excellence: Abby Reed, Stockbridge Valley softball. Of all the great Section III pitchers returning in 2023, none had more strikeouts last spring than Reed, who fanned 160 in just 87 innings.
Purcell Paints Prime Performer: Valerosa Gambitta, Cortland girls basketball. During the Purple Tigers’ 73-50 loss to Waterloo in the state Class B semifinals March 17 in Troy, Gambitta tied for the team lead with 14 points.
Revitalize! CNY Rewarding Performance: Delaney Wiley, Thousand Islands softball. Wiley had a remarkable .661 average during the 2023 season – 39 hits in 59 at-bats – and returns this spring.
Syracuse Orthopedic Specialists Student-Athlete: Sam Cotton, Fulton baseball. No Section III player returns this season with a better batting average than Cotton, who put together .479 during the 2022 campaign.
University Sports Shop/Manny’s Major Moment: Westhill boys basketball defeating Catholic Central 66-61 on March 19 at Cool Insuring Arena in Glens Falls to win the state Class B championship for the fifth time since 2010.
Upstate Urology Upstart: Julia O’Connor, Skaneateles girls lacrosse. O’Connor leads the large group of returning scorers for the Lakers as she had 55 goals and 33 assists during the 2022 season.
U.S. Army Athlete of the Week: Hudson Idzi, Hamilton boys basketball. Idzi did manage 10 points and four assists during the Emerald Knights’ 64-41 defeat to Avoca-Prattsburgh in the March 18 state Class D state semifinals.
Wilkins RV Winning Player: Jessica Cook, Cicero-North Syracuse girls basketball alumna was part of the Toledo women’s team that defeated Iowa State and reached the second round of the NCAA women’s tournament.
Zero Draft Defensive Standout: Neveah Wingate, Liverpool girls basketball. Wingate earned 10 rebounds and three steals to go with her 21 points in the Warriors’ 57-46 loss to White Plains in the state Class AA semifinal March 17 in Troy.