Here are the top 10 topics for the May 11 edition of the Inside High School Sports Show.
1. Yet another example of the quality of high school girls lacrosse in Central New York was last Saturday’s action, where Skaneateles, who was atop the state Class D rankings, lost at West Genesee 14-13 on Tara Osterdale’s last-second goal, while F-M, at no. 2 in the state Class B rankings, lost at home to J-D, whose 14-12 win was its most impressive so far this spring. Having perhaps rescued its season with that Skaneateles win, West Genesee will now, on Thursday night, travel to Baldwinsville, who still sits atop the state Class A rankings entering this week with its 11-1 record. The Wildcats nearly beat the Bees in Camillus late in April, and the rematch could preview the sectional final later this month.
2. This is the last full week of the regular season for girls lacrosse. Aside from the large-school drama, there is also a chance to sort out the crowded Class D picture. Skaneateles fell from the top of the state rankings after the defeat to West Genesee, but still was no. 3 this week, just ahead of Westhill, who was no. 4 with its 11-2 record and coming off a big 10-8 win over no. 5-ranked Marcellus, though the Warriors did take an 11-7 defeat to CBA early this week. There’s also South Jefferson at no. 6. J-D’s win at F-M lifted them up to no. 3 in the state in Class C, behind only Cold Spring Harbor and Bayport Blue Point, while F-M fell back to no. 4 in Class B and Auburn has risen into the top 10.
3. Up until last Saturday, J-D’s boys lacrosse team was the only boys or girls team without a defeat in Section III. But that changed at Fairport, with the Red Rams unable to hold a late lead and falling 10-9 in overtime to the Red Raiders. J-D remains in the spotlight throughout the next week, too, whether it’s a Saturday game at neighbor F-M or next Monday’s clash with Victor, who just handled the Hornets last weekend. J-D enters the week having fallen from no. 2 to no. 5 in the state Class C rankings, where CBA has jumped ahead of them at no. 3, largely because the Brothers are in the midst of a hot stretch that included shutting down West Genesee 9-4 last Saturday to improve its record to 10-2.
4. Now we have Skaneateles up to no. 2 in the state Class D boys lacrosse rankings, helped by last week’s come-from-behind, 8-7 overtime win over Westhill where the Lakers were shut out in the third quarter, yet blanked the Warriors the rest of the way and Nick Wamp got the OT game-winner. General Brown is at no. 3 and Marcellus at no. 5 in those same state rankings. Meanwhile, in Class A Baldwinsville, with its 12-8 win over Liverpool last Thursday, avenged an April defeat to the Warriors, but the depth of great large-school teams in the state means that the Bees are still only at no. 15 in the state rankings going into its game at West Genesee on Thursday night.
5. Wet weather lingered into May and kept curtailing the area high school baseball schedules. Before it did, though, Canastota and Holland Patent both found their way into the state Class B top 10 after the Raiders won a 1-0 duel with the Golden Knights late in April, with Oriskany and Thousand Islands in the state Class C top 10. Teams that got off to blazing starts cooled off, such as West Genesee, who was 7-0 before three straight defeats to Liverpool and Rome Free Academy, and J-D, who got to no. 3 in the state in Class A but had losses to ESM and F-M last week.West Genesee and Baldwinsville were set to meet in their first encounter since last May’s sectional Class AA final during this week’s action.
6. High school softball teams, just like baseball team, had to work their schedules around plenty of rain issues. Up until last week, J-D and Sandy Creek were both undefeated, but the Red Rams took a narrow defeat to Victor and the Comets lost to Belleville-Henderson. Oneida’s win over C-NS the week before lifted the Indians to no. 4 in the state Class B rankings. Somehow, Cazenovia remained unranked in Class B despite staying undefeated into this week, a reflection of just how deep the field of contenders might end up since Oneida is there, along with Marcellus, who cracked the top 20 and then freshman pitcher Aubrey Fraher got a 2-0 shutout of defending sectional champion CBA to add to its confidence.
7. It’s the busy part of the season for area track and field. In boys track, last Friday’s New Hartford Invitational had Utica Proctor upend the likes of Baldwinsville and C-NS for the team title, led by Damoy Allen’s 100 and 200-meter sprint titles. Cazenovia was victorious at the Cooperstown Don Cooper Invitational, while Beaver River pulled away for the victory in the CBA Brother Basilian Invitational. This week is the last week of regular-season league meets, including one where Baldwinsville, C-NS and Liverpool will face each other on the Warriors’ home track for SCAC Metro division honors, and all this before large-scale Friday invitational meets at Baldwinsville, Oneida and Weedsport.
8. A big weekend of girls track and field included the East Syracuse Minoa Invitational, where C-NS roared to the top spot ahead of rival Liverpool less than a week before the two sides would go head-to-head in their regular-season showdown. Westhill finished third and Baldwinsville finished fourth. Camden was victorious in the Rome Copper City Classic over the host team from RFA, while VVS edged Canastota for top honors at the CBA Brother Basilian Invitational. Not only did all that take place, but Liverpool’s top distance runners went up against elite competition in the Runnin Cadet Showdown at Hilton, and Jenna Schulz won the 3,000-meter run feature with Madison Neuner second.
9. Quite a battle is unfolding in large-school girls golf. F-M, long the reigning SCAC Metro division team, nearly was upended last week by Liverpool at Green Lakes, led by the Avotins sisters, but the Hornets did just enough to prevail 176-178, and the two still have a match with each other at Liverpool Country Club later this season. CBA has fought its way to the front in the OHSL and J-D has won both SCAC Empire division tournaments so far this spring. Just the same, New Hartford’s boys golf team had to survive a one-shot battle with Rome Free Academy to remain undefeated, with Marcellus and Manlius-Pebble Hill also remaining perfect and atop their respective OHSL divisions.
10. So the quarterly NYSPHSAA meetings last week included a narrow vote approving girls basketball keeping NCAA rules and not adopting national high school rules that would have, among other things, eliminated the shot clock. Also, starting in 2020-21, the fall, winter and spring sports seasons will all start their practices a week later, giving us more of a summer break and more space between the seasons, with the football state championships at the Carrier Dome now on the first weekend of December. The state girls soccer championships will remain in the Cortland-Homer area for the next few years, while in 2020 state boys lacrosse championships move to Hofstra University on Long Island.