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Posted 9 April 2020 at 9:08 am

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Veteran group gives Barker netters boost

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 9 April 2020 at 9:07 am

Photo by Cheryl Wertman – Among Barker’s good sized group of tennis veterans is this trio of Thomas Jowdy, Carla Stoloski and Jacob Weller.

A year ago an underclassmen dominated Barker tennis squad struggled through a learning 0-12 Niagara-Orleans League campaign. Now, with a large group of veterans back the Raiders are taking aim at an improved season.

Senior Jacob Harris, who took last year off, returns to man the No. 1 singles spot for the Raiders as senior Wesley Harris and freshman Matthew Ryan are competing for the second and third singles spots.

Two juniors, Ella Gooding and Keith Robinson, look to man the first doubles spot.

In addition, senior Jacob Weller and junior Thomas Jowdy and Carla Stoloski all return with experience at the doubles positions.

The chief losses for Coach Jeff Pyskaty’s Raiders were senior David Newton, who played first singles last year but has moved to Lew-Port, and exchange student Georgio Lignola, who played second singles.

The Raiders, like all other teams, are waiting for schools, which are currently closed due to the coronavirus concern, to reopen so the schedule can begin.

Rams tennis team has large veteran group

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 8 April 2020 at 9:44 am

Photo by Cheryl Wertman – Veteran members of the Roy-Hart tennis team include, in front, Collin Dodge, Dominic Pericciny and Jason Kuchey. In back are Maddie Ciemny, Jenna Gioeli, Kayla Hagen, Jordyn Bobzien and Marissa Scott.

Looking to keep the momentum from strong back-to-back (9-3 and 8-4) seasons, the Roy-Hart tennis team returns a large veteran group.

Heading that contingent is the senior singles trio of Collin Dodge, Dominic Pericciny and Jason Kuchey.

Also returning are doubles players Maddie Ciemny, Jenna Gioeli, Kayla Hagen, Jordyn Bobzien and Marissa Scott. All are seniors except Scott who is a sophomore.

Dodge, Pericciny and Kuchey were all second team Niagara-Orleans All-League honors and Hagen an Honorable Mention selection.

“We do have a pretty good group back with three singles players and a good group of doubles players,” said Coach Doug Meyer.

The Rams graduation losses included Cameron VanBuron and Michael Kuchey, who both earned second team N-O All-League honors, and Aspen Moore who was an Honorable Mention selection.

Like all other teams the Rams are waiting for schools, which are currently closed due to the coronavirus concern, to reopen so the season get begin.

Silversmith earns conference academic honors

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 8 April 2020 at 9:40 am

Contributed Photo – Christian Silversmith

Medina High graduate and Medaille College freshman Christian Silversmith has been named to the Allegheny Mountain Academic All Conference lacrosse team.

Silversmith, who plays attack on the Medaille lacrosse team, is majoring in Criminal Justice.

During his scholastic days at Medina he scored 59 goals for the Mustangs his senior year.

Albion tennis squad eyes rebound season

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 7 April 2020 at 9:40 am

Photo by Cheryl Wertman – Leading the Albion tennis squad is the quintet of veterans including Carson Bader, Josh Riley, Josh DePoty, Matt Rowcliffe and James Salvatore.

Looking to bounce back from last spring’s 3-9 Niagara-Orleans League season, the Albion tennis team returns a large veteran nucleus.

The Purple Eagles veteran lineup includes seniors Josh Riley, Matt Rowcliffe, James Salvatore, Chase Froman and Katelynn Spierdowis along with junior Zach Kilner and sophomore Carson Bader.

Bader earned first team N-O All-League honors.

“We’ve got a good group back so we’ll see how well they do,” said Coach Jay Kovaleski.

Albion’s main graduation loss was Matt Kovaleski, who manned the first singles spot for the Purple Eagles and was a three time first team N-O All-League honoree.

Like all other area teams the Purple Eagles are awaiting for schools, which are currently closed due to the coronavirus concern, to reopen so the schedule can began.

Medina tennis squad has a rebuilding task

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 6 April 2020 at 9:34 am

Photo by Cheryl Wertman – Leading Medina into the Niagara-Orleans League tennis season will be this group of veterans. In front are Carter Green, August Pietrafesa and Isaac Pace. In back are Alex Hetrick, Owen Herman, Mark Barcena and Sam Boyle.

Having graduated six of their top seven players the Medina High tennis squad faces a bit of a rebuilding job this season.

Anchoring the lineup is the veteran underclassmen group of juniors Carter Green, August Pietrafesa, Alex Hetrick, Owen Herman and Mark Barcena along with sophomores Isaac Pace and Sam Boyle.

“We’ve got a good group and we’ll be working to improve as the season goes on,” said Coach Chris Horgan.

The Mustangs graduation losses included first team Niagara-Orleans All-League honorees Ray Paull and Haylee Seefeldt, second team selections Kody Leno and Andrew Houseman and Honorable Mention picks Jonathan Pietrafesa and Ben Zakes.

Medina went 9-3 in N-O action last spring finishing in the runner-up spot behind undefeated (12-0) champion Akron.

Like all other area teams the Mustangs are awaiting for schools, which are currently closed due to the coronavirus concern, to reopen so that the schedule can begin.

Medina and Albion have had multiple state track and field champions

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 5 April 2020 at 9:49 am

Contributed Photos – Medina’s Marcell King captured the state Triple Jump title in 1995.

Over the past 25 years Medina had Albion have both had good success at the state track and field championships as the Mustangs have had no less than four individual champions crowned and the Purple Eagles three.

Marcell King started Medina’s run when he captured the state Triple Jump championship in 1995 with what was then a Section VI record leap of 50-41/2.

King advanced to his third trip to the state championships by not only winning the Section VI Triple Jump title but also the Long Jump and 400 titles.

Five years later, in 2000, the Mustangs had Natalie Knight claim the state Class B 200 title with a time of :25.83.

Medina then had back-to-back Division 2 (small schools) Pole Vault champions in Dan Tierney in 2004 and Janice Keppler in 2005.

Albion’s Joe Riley won the state 200 title in 1997.

Tierney, who also held the state in door record of 15-10, claimed his state outdoor Pole Vault title with a then section VI record vault of 16-1.

Keppler, who finished second in 2004, captured her championship in 2005 with a vault of 12-0.

Joe Riley ignited Albion’s state title run when he captured the Class B 200 sprint championship in 1997 with a time of :21.83.

He also finished second in the 100 with a time of :10.9.

Riley also qualified for the state’s in 1998 but unfortunately a hamstring injury prevented him from defending his 200 title. He had qualified for the state meet by not only winning the 200 at the Section VI championships but also the 100 and the Triple Jump.

The Purple Eagles then had Tyrone Newsome capture the Division 1 High Jump championship in 2005 with a leap of 6-8.

Then in 2008 Albion’s Morris Taylor claimed the Division 1 400 title with a time of :48.45.

Lyndonville also had a state champion during that stretch as Alan Rutherford won the 1997 Class C-D High Jump title with a jump of 6-5.

He advanced to the state’s by registering a school record jump of 6-6 in the Section V meet.

Editor’s Note: Spring high school sports previews will resume on Monday.

It was a special first softball sectional time for Lyndonville, Albion and Medina

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 4 April 2020 at 9:27 am

Photos by Cheryl Wertman – Lyndonville pitcher Maddy Boyle and shortstop Rebekah Hoffee in action during the Lady Tigers 2013 sectional championship game win.

In a memorable six year stretch from 2012 to 2017 Albion, Lyndonville and Medina all captured their first sectional softball championships.  In fact, Lyndonville claimed two sectional titles during that stretch.

No. 3 seeded Lyndonville captured its first postseason title in 2013 with a narrow 6-5 victory over top seeded Romulus in the Section V Class D-1 championship game.

Coming from behind twice, Lyndonville tied the game at 4-4 in the sixth on a two-out, two-run single by winning pitcher Maddy Boyle. Singles by Madison Gardepe and Rebekah Hoffee set up the opportunity.

Keeping the momentum, the Lady Tigers then took the lead for good in the top of the seventh on a two-run double by Gardepe. Singles by Jenna Castricone and Caitlyn Albone set up the threat.

Romulus did rally for a run in the seventh but left the potential tying run stranded at third as Boyle got the final two outs herself on a pop up and a ground out.

Lyndonville advanced to the D-1 final by defeating Avoca 12-6 in the quarterfinals and Arkport 9-1 in the semis.

Three-run homers by Castricone and Alyssa Houseman highlighted the win over Avoca.

The Lady Tigers then scored in each of the first five innings against Arkport highlighted by a two-run double by Castricone and an RBI double by Houseman.

Lyndonville’s bid for a spot in the state playoffs was ended by a 7-3 loss to Andover in the Section V Class D state qualifier.

Breaking away from a 2-2 deadlock, Andover moved on top to stay by scoring two runs in the third inning on three more in the fourth.

Four years later Lyndonville captured its second Section V crown as the top seeded Lady Tigers defeated No. 2 Alfred-Almond 10-1 in the 2017 Class D-1 championship game.

After picking up to quick unearned runs in the first inning, Lyndonville built its advantage to 5-1 by scoring solo runs in each of the next three innings highlighted by doubles by Alecia Hinkson and Ella Lewis.

Another double by Hinkson later ignited a three run fifth inning and a triple by Lewis and double by Makenzie Muck keyed a three-run sixth.

The Lady Tigers advanced to the D-1 final by outlasting Fillmore 10-7 in the semifinals.

Trailing 4-3, Lyndonvlle regained the lead for good by scoring twice in the fourth on a pair of errors.

The Lady Tigers then put together a decisive five run fifth inning uprising on three wild pitches, a fielders choice play and a double by Anna Lewis, the only hit of the frame.

However, just as was the case in 2013, Lyndonville’s big for a berth in the state playoffs was ended, this time by a narrow 2-1 loss to Genesee Region League foe Elba in the Section V Class D stet qualifier.

Albion ignited the title run with a 2012 championship victory
Fresh from capturing a fourth straight Niagara-Orleans League title, Albion claimed its first sectional crown by outlasting Lew-Port 10-7 in the 2012 Section VI Class A-2 championship game.

Albion’s Sarah Papponetti puts down a bunt during the Purple Eagles 2012 sectional title run.

Trailing 3-0, Albion exploded for seven runs in the decisive fourth inning to key the milestone victory.

Ignited by a leadoff walk and a one out single by Erica Edwards, Albion scored the first three runs of the outburst n a wild pitch, a single by Ali O’Hearn and an error.

Then, following a single by Sarah Papponetti, an RBI single by winning pitcher Jenn Knaak drove in the go ahead run. Three straight bases loaded walks then capped off the Purple Eagles huge inning.

Albion tacked on two huge insurance runs in the fifth on a pair of errors and another in the sixth on a single by Edwards.

Lew-Port did make the finish interesting scoring twice in the top of the seventh on errors before Knaak and the Purple Eagles defense ended the uprising to preserve the historic win. Knaak scattered four hits and registered 10 strikeouts on the day.

Albion had advanced to the A-2 final by downing Pioneer 5-1 in the quarterfinals and blanking Maryvale 4-0 in the semis.

Against Pioneer, Albion scored quickly on a two-run double by Edwards and later locked up the win with two runs in the sixth on an RBI triple by Tanisha Moyer and an error.

In the circle, Knaak scattered four hits and struck out eight.

Knaak then hurled a three hit shutout with five strikeouts against Maryvale.

The Purple Eagles moved on top to stay early as Halle Jurs had an RBI single in the first inning and Kelsee Soule a home run in the third.

However, Albion’s dream of advancing to the state playoffs was dashed when Hamburg bested the Purple Eagles 7-1 in the Section VI Class A state qualifier.  Leading by a narrow 2-1 margin, the Bulldogs used a big five run sixth inning uprising to lock up the win.

Medina players and coaches proudly display their championship plaque after capturing the 2017 sectional crown.

Narrow wins earn Medina first title
Narrow one run victories were the rule for Medina during the Mustangs 2017 run for their first ever sectional title.

That successful Section VI Class B2 title run saw Medina nip Southwestern 5-4 in 10 innings in the quarterfinals, Fredonia 1-0 in the semis and Eden 5-4 in the championship game.

In the championship game No. 3 seeded Medina broke away from a scoreless deadlock by scoring four runs in the top of the sixth inning on a fielders choice play off the bat of Alyssa Beyer, an RBI single by Destiny Satkowski and a two-run double by Alisha Scroger.

Top seeded Eden answered back with one run in the home half of the sixth but Medina got that one back in the top of the seventh for what proved to be the winning tally as Ryenn Oliver tripled and came home on a sacrifice fly by Lacey Kenward.

The finish though proved to be a thriller as Eden rallied for three runs in the bottom of the seventh to slice the Medina lead to just one with no outs.

However, Mustangs pitcher Emily Kams and her defensive mates got out of the jam by retiring the next three batters on a ground out and a pop out to Kams and a pop out to Kenward at second to lock up the championship.

In the semifinals, a solo home run by Satkowski in the sixth inning provided the only offense Medina needed to nip No. 2 Fredonia. In the circle, Kams hurled a one hitter with 8 strikeouts.

In the quarterfinals, Medina literally walked home with a wild 10 inning win over Southwestern as Cora Payne drew the decisive walk to force in Ashlee Howell with the game winner in the bottom of the 10th after two other walks had loaded the bases.

Southwestern had rallied from a 4-0 deficit to tie the game with three runs in the fifth and one in the sixth.

However, Kams blanked the Lady Trojans over the final four innings registering 6 of her 14 strikeouts during that stretch.

Medina’s bid for a spot in the state playoffs was ended by Depew in the Section VI Class B state qualifier as the Wildcats downed the Mustangs 5-2. Three first inning runs keyed the win for Depew.

Lady Rams look to defend N-O title

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 3 April 2020 at 10:36 am

Photo by Cheryl Wertman – Veteran members of the Roy-Hart softball squad include, in front, Shelby Wolf and Claire Halstead. In back are Sam Choate, Reanna Perkins and Mallory Steiner.

Looking to keep the momentum from back-to-back undefeated (12-0) Niagara-Orleans League title seasons, the Roy-Hart varsity softball squad is led by a good nucleus of five veterans.

That quintet includes senior infielder Sam Choate, junior pitcher Mallory Steiner and junior first baseman Shelby Wolf along with sophomores Claire Halstead and Reanna Perkins.

Steiner earned first team N-O All-League honors last spring while Choate was a second team pick and Perkins an Honorable Mention selection.

“We’ve got a good group and they have set some pretty high goals for themselves,” said new Coach Mark Kwoka.

The Lady Rams graduation losses include first team N-O All-League honorees cacher Maddie Fry and third baseman Jamie Bower, second team pick outfielder Lexie Lovewell along with Honorable Mention selections Ashley Hill and Jayden Townsend and first baseman Emily Metz.

Along with other area teams the Lady Rams are currently awaiting for schools, which are closed due to the coronavirus concern, to reopen so the season schedule can begin.

Lady Eagles return large veteran group

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 2 April 2020 at 8:30 am

Photo by Cheryl Wertman – The Kendall varsity softball team’s large veteran group includes, in front, Autumn Woodward, Lizzie Sutphen, Brittney Marks and Olivia Caldwell. In back are Kate Pearson, Madison Shonitsky, Sara Mattle and Rebecca Banker.

Looking to improve upon last spring’s 6-12 record, the Kendall varsity softball squad boasts a large veteran contingent including no less than seven starters.

Kendall’s veteran contingent includes seniors Brittney Marks (infield), Lizzie Sutphen (outfield), Olivia Caldwell (outfield), Kate Pearson (outfield), Autumn Woodward (infield) and Rebecca Banker (outfield) along with sophomore Sara Mattle (pitcher) and freshman Madison Shonitsky (infield). Marks earned Genesee Region League All-Star honors last spring.

The Lady Eagles lineup also includes junior Ciera Kupferschmid (catcher) and sophomore Julie Coble ((catcher/outfield).

Kendall’s gradation losses included infielders Kelly Mayes and Abigail Jenks and outfielder Anna Oakley.

“We have a veteran group with seven starters back,” said Coach Jeff Parizek. “That experience will be key as the league is always tough.”

Kendall, like all other area teams is awaiting the reopening of schools which are currently closed due to the coronavirus concern so that the schedule can begin.