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Mike Wertman, Sports Writer


Barker boys, Akron girls repeat as N-O cross-country champions

Photo by Chery Wertman
Barker's Sergio Cruz leads the pack at the start of today's Niagara-Orleans All-League meet race at Lakeside Beach State Park. Cruz successfully repeated as the individual champion and the Barker boys likewise defended their team title.

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 25 October 2014

Making a successful title defense, both the Barker boys and Akron girls teams captured first place honors at the annual Niagara-Orleans All-League cross-country championships this morning at Lakeside Beach State Park.

Making it two championships seasons in a row and six of the last seven years, the Barker boys romped to a 42 point victory. The Raiders, which posted a perfect 7-0 record during the dual meet portion of the N-O season, finished with 24 points. Albion was a distant second with 66 followed by, Newfane 98, Roy-Hart 126, Wilson 130, Akron 134, Medina 152 and CSAT 215.

The Akron girls made it three straight N-O championships by edging out runner-up Newfane 38 points to 44. Albion finished third with 61 points followed by Roy-Hart 117, Wilson 129 and Barker 131. The Lady Tigers likewise compiled a perfect 7-0 record dying the dual meet portion of the season.

Photo by Cheryl Wertman
Akron's Margo Henley (607), who took first place honors, leads the pack early in the girls race. The front pack includes Medina's Holly Heil (648) along with Albion's Madyson Coville (619) and Meredith Patterson (625) along with Akron's Emily Ludwig (610) and Newfane's Kimberly Goerss (661).


Barker's Sergio Cruz repeated as the N-O individual champion winning the race in a time of 17:42.9. The Raiders in fact had five of the top nine finishers as Doug Bachman placed 4th, Jack Hopkins 5th, Dustin Walters 6th, Casey Webb 8th and Christopher Sweeney 9th.

Newfane's Samuel Auernhamer finished 2nd, Roy-Hart's Avery Green 3rd and Medina's Austin Heil 7th to round out the first All-League team which is comprised of the top seven finishers.

Albion's trio of Aaron Chen (10th), Brady Meakin (11th) and Jason Downs (14th) along with Newfane's Tyler Arnett (12th) and Barker's Brent Bachman (13th) complete the second All-League team which includes runners finishing 8th through 14th.

The Honorable mention team, which is comprised of runners finishing 15th through 21st, includes Albion's Evan Steier (15th) and Evan Papallardo (16th), Wilson's Trey Rees (17th) and Jordan Stoelting (18th), Medina's Daniel Heil (19th) and Roy-Hart's Ethan Gagne (20th) and Tanner Bulmer (21st).

Photo by Cheryl Wertman
A group of runners makes they way along the Lake Ontario shoreline.


The Akron girls squad was led by the 1-3-6 finish of champion Margo Henley (20:21.8), Emily Ludwig and Kylee Schultz.

Newfane's Kimberly Goerss who finished 2nd and Nina Burkard (5th) along with Albion's Madyson Coville (4th) and Barker's Gabrielle Baker (7th) round out the first All-League team.

The second All-League team includes Newfane's Lydia Chunco (8th) and Allie DeBiase (11th), Albion's Meredith Patterson (9th) and Hannah Grammar (14th), Medina's Holly Heil (10th), Roy-Hart's Chelsea Herriven (12th) and Akron's Alexandra Erb (13th).

The Honorable Mention team includes the Akron trio of Hope Cummings (17th), Emma Chubb (18th) and Amanda Ciurzynski (19th) along with Albion's Emma Mathes (15th), Wilson's Victoria Couturier (16th), Newfane's Laura Auernhamer (20th) and Roy-Hart's Katelyn DiBenedetto (21st).

Photo by Cheryl Wertman
Roy-Hart's Chelsea Herriven (671) Medina's Holly Heil (648) makes the turn along the scenic lake shore.


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Kendall girls roar to sectional victory with big second half surge

Photo by Cheryl Wertman
Kendall's Maya Rutland (13), who scored three goals, works to keep control of the ball against Campbell-Savona defender Megan Lyke (11) during the host Lady Eagles sectional victory this evening.

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 24 October 2014

Putting together a huge second half scoring barrage, No. 2 seed Kendall rolled to a 6-0 victory over visiting No. 7 Campbell-Savona this evening in the quarterfinals of the Section V Class CC girls soccer playoffs.

Maya Rutland scored three goals to lead the big uprising for Kendall which improves to 15-1-1 on the season.

Breaking away from a 0-0 deadlock, Kendall scored what proved to be the game winner 8 minutes into the second half as Rutland tallied off an assist from Elizabeth Rath.

The Lady Eagles quickly doubled their advantage just three minutes later as Jenna LoSapio scored her first goal of the season.

Photo by Cheryl Wertman
Kendall's Taylor ReQua (10) works to take control of the ball against Campbell-Savona's Monica Cartas (7).


That opened the scoring floodgates as the Lady Eagles tackled on two more goals by Rutland, off assists from Taylor ReQua and Rath, along with one goal each by ReQua and Keri Furness, off an assist from Marisa Hanlon.

Kendall next faces No. 6 Warsaw Tuesday at a site to be determined in the Class CC semifinals.


Section VI Class B
In Section VI Class B playoff action, Wilson nipped Fredonia 2-1, East Aurora shutout Roy-Hart 3-0 and Falconer/Cassadaga Valley trimmed Akron 3-2.


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Mustang spikers oust Lady Rams

Photo by Cheryl Wertman
Molley Gross (10) registers a spiking kill for Medina during the host Mustangs sectional win over Roy-Hart this evening.


By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 24 October 2014

No. 7 seed Medina ousted visiting rival No. 10 Roy-Hart in straight sets this evening 25-15, 25-22, 25-14 to open Section VI Class C1 volleyball playoff action.

Nicole Blount had 11 spiking kills, Emma Ambrose 9 kills and 5 service aces, Emily Kams 21 assists an 2 kills, Molley Gross 2 kills and 2 blocks and Brittany Schultz 4 kills to lead the way for the Mustangs which next visit No. 2 seed City Honors on Tuesday.


Setting the tone for the evening, Medina jumped out to a 13-4 lead in the opening set as Ambrose served up points 1-4 (3 aces), Abi Smith points 7-10 (1 ace) and Kams 12-13 (1 ace). Ambrose had two kills during that stretch.

Ambrose then served up points 24 and 25 in the second set and Gross scored points 20-23 and Smith 25 in the decisive third set.

The Mustangs also defeated the Lady Rams twice during the Niagara-Orleans League season in a pair of five set matches.


Akron 25-25-25
JFK 22-11-18

Taylor Jonathan had 12 digs, 4 kills and 2 aces and Emily Hoerner 9 kills and 4 blocks to lad No. 8 Akron to a straight set wn over No. 9 JFK in a Class C2 opening round match.


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Barker/Roy-Hart trims Tonawanda


By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 24 October 2014

Dominick Snider had a huge night rushing 18 times for 226 yards and four touchdowns to lead Barker/Roy-Hart to a 26-21 victory over Tonawanda this evening in an interdivisional game at Middleport.

Snider scored on runs of 77 and 55 yards in the second quarter to keep Barker/Roy-Hart even with Tonawanda at 14-14 at the half as Brandinlee Woods added a two-point conversion.

Snider scored on a 1 yard run in the third quarter to put Barker/Roy-Hart up 20-14. He then scored what proved to be the game winner in the fourth quarter on a 2 yard run.

Defensively for Barker/Roy-Hart Ryan Ulrich made 10 tackles, Josh Mead 9 and Snider 8.

Now at 3-5, Barker/Roy-Hart next visits Pioneeer for another interdivisional game on Wednesday.


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Top seeded Bennett ousts Medina


By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 24 October 2014

Leading by a narrow 8-6 margin, top seeded Bennett scored two touchdowns to close the first half keying a 42-6 victory over No. 8 Medina this evening in the quarterfinal round of the Section VI Class B playoffs at Buffalo's All High Stadium.

Medina had pulled to within 8-6 early in the second quarter on a 10 yard touchdown pass from quarterback Jason Hellwig to Brett Pecoraro. A 29 yard run by Hellwig, who had a total of 140 yards passing and 74 rushing on the night, set up the score.

However, Bennett answered right back with touchdown runs of 56 and 3 yards by Andrew White to extend the lead to 22-6 at the half.

Medina did drive to the Bennett 9 late in the second quarter but could not capitalize on the opportunity.

Bennett put a lock on the victory with a pair of third quarter touchdown on runs of 10 yards by Isaiah McDuffie and 17 yards by Bradon Brown upping the Tigers advantage to 36-6 at the three-quarter mark.

Bennett improves to 8-0 while Medina slips to 5-3.


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Dunkirk gridders edge past Albion

Photo by Cheryl Wertman
Albion's Tyler Rotoli breaks loose for a first half touchdown during the Purple Eagles narrow 22-20 home field loss to Dunkirk this evening in the Class B Consolation Bowl semifinals.


By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 24 October 2014

A last minute rally fell just short as Albion dropped a narrow 22-20 decision to visiting Dunkirk this evening in the semifinals of the Section VI Class B Chuck Funke Memorial Consolation Bowl.

Trailing 22-14, Albion sliced the deficit to just two with just 46 seconds to go on a 35 yard touchdown run by quarterback Kyle Smith. A 35 yard Smith to Manwell Taylor pass on the preceding snap set up the tally.

However, the Purple Eagles run attempt for the two-point conversion fell just short enabling the Mauraders to maintain a slender 22-20 lead.

Dunkirk then put a lock on the win by recovering Albion's ensuing on side kick attempt.

Albion had jumped out to a 7-0 lead early in the second quarter on a 49 yard touchdown run by Tyler Rotoli and an extra point kick by Alex Bison. A 39 yard pass completion from Smith to Trey Hart set up the opportunity.

Dunkirk used a big special team play, a 55 yard punt return for a touchdown by Richard Pickens, to briefly gain the lead at 8-7 with 1:49 to go in the opening half as Miguel Alicea added the two-point conversion run.

Photo by Cheryl Wertman
Albion's Trey Hart intercepts a pass near the end zone.


However, Albion answered right back with a 15 yard touchdown pass from Smith to Manny Thompson with 47 seconds to go to regain a 14-8 lead at the half as Bison again added the extra point kick. A 34 yard pass completion from Smith to Des Blackmon along with a 15 yard penalty against Dunkirk set up the threat.

The Purple Eagles though could not find the end zone again until the final minute of the game as Dunkirk used two long ground attack drives in the second half to regain the lead for good.

First, Leroy Gilbert scored on a 1 yard touchdown run with 8:13 to go in the third quarter to pull Dunkirk even at 14-14. Then, Tristan Peck scored on s 20 yard run with 5:41 to go in the fourth quarter to put the Mauraders back on top to stay at 22-14 as Alicea added what proved to be the deciding two-point conversion run.


Two pass interceptions by Hart, along with a fumble recovery by Mike Laine, highlighted the defensive effort for Albion which also had Aaron Burnside and Nate Trembly in double figures for tackles.

Albion finishes the season at 4-4 while Dunkirk advances to next week's Class B Consolation Bowl final against the winner of the Olean vs. Alden game.


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Barker posts shutout to open field hockey sectional title defense


By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 24 October 2014

Getting goal prduction from five different players top seeded Barker opened defense of its Section VI Class C field hockey title by posting a 6-0 victory over visiting No. 8 Holland this afternoon.

Mellssa Grosshans scored two goals as Gabby Clare, Becky Stoloski, Lydia Dewart and Erin Greenwald each netted one for Barker which led 2-0 at the half. Clare also assisted on both of Grosshans' goals.

The Lady Raiders will next face the winner of the No. 4 East Aurora vs.No. 5 Eden game in the semifinals next Thursday.

In the other quarterfinal games which matched N-O foes No. 2 Akron defeated No. 7 Roy-Hart 3-1 and No. 3 Wilson nipped rival No. 6 Newfane 2-1 in overtime.

Molly Jennings scored two goals in the first half and Loriann Blenker one in the second half to lead the way for Akron which will next face Wilson in the semis.

Rielly Albee scored the goal for Roy-Hart.

Wilson advanced on an overtime goal by Rachael Cobo.

Liz Soles scored Wilson's other goal in the first half .

Olivia Mitchell assisted on both Wilson goals.

Lydia Garaughn scored Newfane's goal.


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A busy week on the 'Y' volleyball courts

Orleans County YMCA Happenings


Contributed story, Posted 24 October 2014
We are back with another action packed week of fall indoor volleyball at the Orleans Countyl YMCA. This week had plenty of eventful moments; ranging from devastating spikes for victories, to unbeaten streaks coming to an end.


We will get right into the action, starting off with our C division as always. Our first match was an intense one as two time defending champions Main Liquor took on middle of the pack Serves You Right. Main Liquor got off to a quick lead. Their effort was lead by Kevin Fraiser slamming the ball like a pro. Hailey Jakubowski of Serves You Right helped her team fight back as she set Mat Hungerford for some great throw downs. However, there just wasn’t enough fire power as Main Liquor took the set 3-0 with a score of 75-44.


Our next match up was V8 Launchers vs. Bumper Cars. Bumper Cars looking for were looking for their first win but V8 Launchers didn’t want to let that happen. V8 Launchers looked better this week, but maybe it was because they didn’t have Roz Tonndera. Regardless, they were on fire this week, taking the set 3-0 with a score of 75-40.


In our final match of C division, Sets on the Beach took on Kiss My Ace. In the first game both teams went back and forth until Sara Page came up huge with a pinpoint spike to win the game 25-23. After a crazy game, one Sets on the beach destroyed Kiss My Ace with a 25-3 thrashing. It didn’t get much better from there as Set on the Beach took the third game 25-11, winning themselves the set 2-1 with a score of 73-39.

Moving over to our B division, we had an action packed set of games. In the first match up we had 3rd place Mundion Watts taking on 4th place We Showed Up. Both teams were evenly matched. However, neither of the teams were able to get a large lead. We Showed Up played the stronger game, as they were able to take it 25-20 in the first game. This effort was led by Adam Hellwig as he dominated at the net with his height. Mundion Watts didn’t have an answer for him in the first two games, but the third one was a different story. Starting the game off was Matt Mundion himself, serving line drives to each member of We Showed Up, propelling his team to an early lead. Husband and wife Marcus and Jenn Watts, capitalized his effort and finished off the game with a flurry of spikes. Despite a great game three performance, We Showed Up took the match 2-1 with a score of 64-68.


In our next match up, Bridget’s Bashers looked to continue their win streak as they took on Smart Bumps. Smart Bumps were looking to stop their own losing streak. As they battled for a couple wins. Bridget’s Bashers wouldn’t be denied as they played great defense to win game one 25-15. Smart Bumps couldn’t figure out a way to combat Bridget’s conservative style. Priding themselves on making the least mistakes they can. Jamie Glass and Cory Lewis brought the fire power for Bridget’s to lead them to a 3-0 victory with a score of 75-46.


In our last game of B division, 2nd place Victorious Secret took on 1st place and undefeated How I Set Your Mother 2. In an incredible set of games, both teams battled to take each and every point. The Welker brothers stood strong in game one as Victorious Secret won 25-18. In game two, it was all Secret as Nicci Moore connected with Danny Anderson for multiple spikes. In game three, however, How I Set Your Mother 2 changed a few things around and got rolling to a quick lead. Jenna Carpenter was a huge asset to her team, as she set everyone she could for a spike. With a great team effort, How I Set Your Mother 2 was able to take game three 25-18.However, Victorious Secret still took the set 2-1 with a score of 68-58, along with reclaiming first place. This won’t be the last time these teams face off, as they will continue to battle for first place all season long.

Finally, we move on to our A division where T-Shirts Etc had the double header. Their first match up saw them taking on Zacher Construction in a very strange set. In the first game it was all Zacher Construction. Even missing captain Scott Grimm, they still seemed to be rolling because of the all round play of Ben Wadhams and Jody Zacher. Then game two came around. And the whole team of T-Shirts Etc. were on point as they handed Zacher Construction their first loss of the season. Game three would not end well for T-Shirts though, as jump serve after jump serve destroyed T-Shirts in game three, 25-9. Zacher went on to take the set 2-1 with a score of 71-41.


In their second game of night T-Shirts took on Shockers 2. Already being tired from their first game Shockers 2 took full advantage of T-Shirts. Nate Ralph made it look easy with the thunderous spikes he was throwing down on the opposing defense. He couldn’t be stopped; he was like Thor slamming down his hammer with every swing. T-Shirts improved after every game, but they couldn’t snag a win from Shockers 2 as they fell 3-0 with a score of 75-46.

Youth Soccer
We are back with soccer this week as two fantastic games got underway. First were our 4-6 year olds, battling out for supremacy. Boe Preston dominated everyone with swift dribbling and crafty moves to set him apart, and scored a hat trick of goals for his team. On the other side TJ Champney made quick work of everyone, darting from end to end for two goals for himself. After that TJ went on to play stellar defense to keep his team in the lead.


Moving over to our 7-9 group, The Panthers took on Sharks. DJ Hale of the Panthers started the game out strong with a stunning shot to the net. This was followed up by Joshua Slingerland playing lock down defense to keep his team ahead. Claira Keppler of the Sharks came up big as she got the Sharks only goal. Sadly, that wasn’t enough get them the win as the Panthers took the game 3-1. However, they have a rematch next week. Stay tuned to see who comes out on top.


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Youth football playoffs begin Saturday


Contributed story, Posted 24 October 2014

The Niagara Orleans Football Association playoffs will get underway on Saturday with six games at Medina's Vets Park.

The Mini Division semis will begin at noon with No. 3 seed Tri Town (6-2) vs. No. 2 Oakfield/Elba (7-1) followed by No. 4 Medina (6-2) vs. No. 1 Albion (8-0) at 1:40 p.m.

The JV Division will then have No. 4 Roy-Hart (5-3) vs. No. 1 Akron (8-0) at 3:20 p.m. followed by No. 3 Newfane (5-3) vs. No. 2 Medina (7-1) at 5 p.m.

Finally, the Varsity Division will have No. 3 Oakfield/Elba (6-2) vs. No. 2 Albion (7-1) at 6:40 p.m. followed by No. 4 Newfane (6-2) vs. No. 1 Tri Town (7-1) at 8:20 p.m.

The championship games will also be held at Medina on November 1 with the Mini Division at 11 a.m., the JV at 2 p.m. and the Varsity at 5 p.m.


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Mustangs, Purple Eagles to renew soccer rivalry in sectional semifinals Saturday

Photo by Cheryl Wertman
Medina/Lyndonville and Albion will renew their soccer rivalry Saturday in the Section VI Class B1 semifinals at 5 p.m. at Hamburg. Here Albion's Jacob Squicciarini (6) and Medina/Lyndonville's Brian Anderson (7) battle for the ball during a regular season meeting.


By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 24 October 2014

A berth in the sectional finals will be at stake as defending champion Medina/Lyndonville faces rival Albion in the Section VI Class B1 semifinals at 5 p.m. Saturday at Hamburg.

No. 3 seed Medina/Lyndonville, which bested Albion twice during the regular season by scores of 4-2 and 3-1 in route to capturing the Niagara-Orleans League championship, advanced to the semis by nipping No. 6 Alden 1-0 Thursday in the quarterfinals at Vets Park.

"Medina/Lyndonville has a very good team and they have the experience of having been there before," said Albion Coach Keith Akers. "We know we'll have our work cut out for us."

Albion romped past No. 7 Burgard 7-0 in the opening round and then nipped No. 2 seed Bennett 2-1 in double overtime Thursday in the quarterfinals to gain a spot in the semis.

"Albion is playing very good soccer right now," said Medina/Lyndonville Coach Steve Luksch. "They've started the sectionals strong so we know it will be tough. They know us and we know them."

Offensively Medina/Lyndonville is led by Brian Anderson (16 goals, 6 assists) and Steven Anderson (11 goals, 7 assists). The Mustangs have also received good point production from James Ianni (6 goals, 10 assists), Kristian Snyder (4 goals, 3 assists), Aaron Feltz (3 goals, 3 assists) and Greg Husung (3 goals, 3 assists).

Albion has been sparked on offense by Marcos Sanchez (9 goals, 11 assists), Jacoby Miller (9 goals, 3 assists), Cam Usselman (6 goals, 4 assists), Connor McQuillan (5 goals) and Dylan Bader (4 goals, 1 assist).

Medina/Lyndonville brings a 13-3-1 record into the semis while Albion is at 6-12.

The N-O League will also be represented in the other B1 semifinal as No. 4 Newfane will take on top seeded East Aurora in the 7:30 p.m. contest at Hamburg. Newfane nipped No. 5 Tonawanda 3-2 in the quarterfinals Thursday.

The N-O League will also have two teams in Saturday's Class B 2 semifinals at Hamburg as No. 4 Wlson will face No. 1 Lackawanna and No. 6 Akron will take on No. 7 Falconer/Cassadaga Valley. Wilson nipped No. 5 City Honors and Akron blanked No. 3 Fredonia 2-0 in Thursday's quarterfinals.

Section V playoffs
The No. 2 seed Kendall girls team will host No. 7 Campbell-Savona at 6 this evening in a Section V Class CC quarterfinal game.

The top seeded Kendall boys squad will entertain No. 8 Marion at 6 p.m. Saturday in a Class C2 quarterfinals contest.

Also at 6 p.m. Saturday, No. 4 Holley will host No. 5 Williamson in a Class C1 quarterfinal.


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Medina/Lyndonville, Albion booters win to advance to sectional semi showdown

Photo by Cheryl Wertman
James Ianni (10) does a header for Medina/Lyndonville against Alden's Conrad Boucher (19) during the Mustangs Class B1 quarterfinal round win over the Bulldogs this afternoon at Vets Park.


By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 23 October 2014

Settiing the stage for a semifinal round rivalry showdown, Medina/Lyndonville and Albion both scored narrow one goal victories this afternoon in the quarterfinal round of the Section VI Class B1 boys soccer playoffs.

No. 3 seed Medina/Lyndonville made a lone first half goal stand up for a narrow 1-0 victory over No. 6 Alden at Vets Park and No. 10 Albion upended No. 2 Bennett 2-1 in double overtime at Buffalo's All High Stadium.

Medina/Lyndonville and Albion will now meet in the B1 semifinals on Saturday at Hamburg High School at 5 p.m. The Mustangs downed the Purple Eagles twice during the regular season by scores of 4-2 and 3-1 in route to capturing the Niagara-Orleans League championship.


Medina/Lyndonville 1, Alden 0
Brian Anderson's team leading 16th goal of the season with 16:34 to go in the first half, off an assist from Steven Anderson, provided the margin of victory for Medina/Lyndonville over Alden as goalie Justin Morgan and his defensive teammates did the rest to notch the shutout.

"It was what we expected. Every game in sectionals will be tight like that," said Medina/Lyndonville Coach Steve Luksch. "Our defense came up big for us."

Alden goalie Brian Long made several huge saves to keep the Bulldogs in the game.

Defending Class B1 champion Medina/Lyndonville advances to the semis with a 13-3-1 record.

Photo by Cheryl Wertman
Medina/Lyndonville's Kristian Snyder (8) brings the ball up field against Alden's Jack Merritt.

Albion 2, Bennett 1 (2OT)
A goal by Connor McQuillan at 11:08 of the second overtime period, off an assist from Marcos Sanchez, lifted Albion past Bennett.

Albion had grabbed a 1-0 lead in the first half as Jacoby Miller tallied off an assist from Sanchez but Bennett battled back with a second half goal to knot the contest.

"They were fast and our defense really had to play with their backs to the wall but they played hard and did the job," said Albion Coach Keith Akers. "It was a gutty performance."

Morgan Seielstad and Devin Gaylord shared in the goaltending duties for Albion which also got strong defensive efforts from Nick Reed and Jacob Leggat.


Newfane 3, Tonawanda 2
Trevor Moreland scored two goals and Jon George one to lead No. 4 seed Newfane to the narrow 3-2 win over No. 5 Tonawanda as the Panthers became the third N-O team to advance to the Class B1 semifinals and will face top seeded East Aurora Saturday at Hamburg at 7:30 p.m.


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Kendall's sectional contest has a special moment, a special goal

Contributed Photo
Zach Adams, center, who is shown here with his brother Jake and mother Kelly, scored a special goal in Kendall's sectional opener against Bolivar-Richburg Wednesday.

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 23 October 2014

All too often today the true value and meaning of sports and sportsmanship gets lost in the quest to win, especially at playoff time when the determination, fervor and drive to win among players and teams is greatly intensified.

However, that was not the case this Wednesday during a boys sectional soccer game between Kendall and Bolivar-Richburg when a special moment took place that reflects what sports and competition is really all about.

With about five minutes to go and top seeded Kendall holding a 6-0 lead over Bolivar-Richburg, Kendall Coach Brian Duffy subbed in Zach Adams, a senior with Downs Syndrome who was one of several players called up from the JV team for the sectionals.

What followed was a storybook picture of true sportsmanship, caring and compassion for a fellow athlete as players from both teams worked to help get Zach get into position to score his most memorable first varsity goal which fittingly came off an assist from his brother Jake.

"It's just so overpowering I think I went into shock. At first I didn't even realize that Jake had assisted on the goal. It's really hard to put into words what it means to Zach and to our family," said Zach and Jake's mother Kelly. "The Bolivar-Richburg players just took it upon themselves to help make it possible. It was just so overpowering."

The congratulatory celebration by players from both teams which followed was a a display of true sportsmanship and a respect and compassion for one's opponent that is all too often lacking today.

"The kids on both teams saw just something bigger and more important that the score," said Kendall Athletic Director Kevin Watson. "It was just a really neat thing and to have his brother get the assist on the goal was the icing on the cake."

"I was just amazed to see how quickly the Bolivar-Richburg players realized that the Kendall players were trying to get Zach the ball and all of a sudden it clicked," said Zach and Jake's dad Tom. "He's never scored a goal before. It was beautiful. It was great. This will be the highlight for him. I can't say enough about the Bolivar-Richburg players. I think they took it upon themselves to do that. They are a group of impressive young men. They played with class the whole game."

Zach, a senior, has played on the JV team the past two years.

"Zach is a good athlete. He has completed in the Special Olympics and he plays every sport to the best of his ability," said his dad. "To have that kind of drive to play sports is really something. He contributed to the JV team and put in some quality minutes. But for him just getting called up to the varsity, to the big club, for the sectionals was a big thing and then to score a goal, that will really be the highlight. That will be tough to trump."


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Medina gridders facing big challenge at No. 1 Bennett in Class B quarterfinals

Photo by Cheryl Wertman
Brett Pecoraro and his Medina teammates will visit Bennett Friday evening in the quarterfinal round of the Section VI Class B playoffs.

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 23 October 2014

Having earned a spot in the sectionals for the second straight year and the third time in the last five seasons, No. 8 seed Medina will visit undefeated (7-0) No.1 seed Bennett in the Class B quarterfinals at 7 p.m. Friday at Buffalo's All-High Stadium.

The contest will be a rematch of a week 2 regular season game which saw Bennett romp past Medina 46-14 in route to posting a perfect 6-0 B North Division championship campaign.

"They are a very good, very talented, very big and very athletic team but I definitely think we are a better team than we were in week two. We have everyone healthy now," said Medina Coach Eric Valley.

The Mustangs rebounded from that setback to win three of their last four B North contests, including a regular season ending 46-30 victory over rival Albion, to earn a sectional berth.

"It's a great opportunity anytime you get into the sectionals," said Valley. "We're excited about the opportunity."

Medina, which brings a 5-2 record into the sectionals, is led offensively by senior quarterback Jason Hellwig who as completed 78 of 133 passes for 972 yards and 11 touchdowns. Hellwig, who is already the Mustangs career TD passing leader with 40, has 4 scoring passes to Brandon Schoolcraft, 3 to Dylan Lewis, 2 to Brett Pecoraro and 1 each to Ty Hrovat and Tom Follman.

Pecoraro leads Medina in rushing with 949 yards and 9 touchdowns as Devin Joy has 373 yards and 7 TDs.

Defensively, the Mustangs have been led by Follman with 48 tackles, Charles Beach 46, Pecoraro and Eric Neace 44, and Tyler Howard 37. Pecoraro also has 9.5 sacks and 2 fumble recoveries, Beach 3.5 sacks, Joy 3 fumble recoveries and Trevor Bentley 2.

"We are going to have to try and match them physically," said Valley. "And we're going to have to eliminate mistakes and breakdowns."

The other Class B quarterfinal match ups will have No. 7 Maryvale at No. 2 East Aurora, No. 6 Depew at No. 3 Cheektowaga and No. 5 Fredonia at No. 4 Burgard.

This will mark the 11th year that Medina has qualified for the sectionals since the playoffs began in 1979.

Medina's playoff history:
1980 - Finals : Medina 20, Silver Creek 14

1982 - Finals: Medina 26, Cassadaga Valley 7

1987 - Semifinals: Salamanca 29, Medina 7

1988 - Semifinals: Medina 18, Cheektowaga
         -  Finals: Medina 14, Albion 7

1997 - Semifinals: Springville 33, Medina 0

1999 - Semifinals: Lackawanna 38, Medina 8

2005 - Semifinals: Southwestern 27, Medina 0

2007 - Semifinals: East Aurora 29, Medina 25

2010 - Quarterfinals: Pioneer 24, Medina 16

2013 - Quarterfinals: Alden 25, Medina 0


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Volleyball sectional opener will have Medina hosting Roy-Hart on Friday


By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 22 October 2014

Seeded No. 7, Medina will face a very familiar foe in the opening round of the Section VI Class C1 volleyball playoffs as the Mustangs will host No. 10 Roy-Hart at 6 p.m. Friday.

Medina (8-4) defeated Roy-Hart (3-9) twice during the Niagara-Orleans League season, both times by narrow margins of three sets to two.

N-O champion Albion (12-0) is seeded No. 2 in Class B2 and the Purple Eagles will host No. 7 Dunkirk in the quarterfinals next Tuesday.

In other C1 openers Friday involving N-O teams, No. 9 Newfane (7-5) visits No. 8 Fredonia and No. 12 CSAT(0-12) travels to No. 5 Southwestern.
In a Class C2 opener Friday, No. 8 Akron (5-7) hosts No. 9 JFK. Then next Tuesday, No. 5 Wilson (7-5) will visit No. 4 Falconer.


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Holley, Kendall booters roll in sectional openers

Photo by Cheryl Wertman
Holley's Jon Bower (12) goes up for a header off a corner during the host Hawks 4-1 sectional victory over Sodus this evening.


By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 22 October 2014
Jumping out to an early 2-0 lead, No. 4 seed Holley went on to defeat visiting No. 13 Sodus 4-1 this evening in the opening round of the Section V Class C1 playoffs.

Top seeded Kendall likewise opened postseason play strong as the Eagles romped past No. 16 Bolivar-Richburg 7-0 in a Class C2 contest at Perry.

Gabe Mendoza scored 12 minutes in off an assist from Jon Bower and then Justin Parker tallied just four minutes later from Andrew Carey to give Holley the early 2-0 lead.

Sodus did cut the deficit to 2-1 three minutes later on a goal by Maleak Burton but the Spartans would get no closer.

Holley regained a little breathing room at 3-1 when Mendoza scored with 14:24 to go in the first half off an assist from Flint DiLella.

The Hawks later picked up an insurance goal 10 minutes into the second half when Mendoza completed his hat-trick as DiLella again earned the assist.

Holley, which improves to 9-5-3, will next host No. 5 Williamson, a 2-1 victor over No. 12 South Seneca Romulus, in the quarterfinals on Saturday.

Photo by Cheryl Wertman
Holley's Andrew Cary (9) passes the ball up field which set up a goal by Justin Parker.


Kendall 7, Bolivar-Richburg 0
Six different players contributed goals as undefeated (14-0-3) Kendall rolled past Bolivar-Richburg 7-0.

Jake Adams gave Kendall an early lead with a pair of goals, both off assists from Riley Iqbal.

The Eagles then had Skyler Heller score from Will Condo, Sage Summers from Justin Barrett, Barrett from Condo, Cody Travis from Jake Adams and finally Zach Adams netted his first varsity goal off an assist from his brother Jake Adams.

The Eagles will next host the winner of the No. 8 vs. No. 9 Perry game in the quarterfinals on Saturday.


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Lyndonville girls win sectional opener

Roy-Hart scores upset win; Albion, Medina bow


By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 22 October 2014

Scoring twice in each half, No. 7 Lyndonville defeated No. 10 Avoca 4-0 this evening in a Section V Class DD opening round playoff game at Warsaw.

In Section VI Class B opening round action, No. 14 Roy-Hart upset No. 3 Tonawanda 1-0 in overtime, No. 2 Wilson blanked No. 15 Medina 4-0, No. 7 Fredonia shutout No. 10 Albion 2-0, No. 4 Akron routed No. 13 Eden 12-0 and No. 9 Newfane downed No. 8 Alden 3-0.

Lyndonville jumped out to a quick 1-0 lead on a goal by Gabby Dusett just three minutes in off an assist from Aubrey Lewis.

The Lady Tigers doubled their advantage when Kaity Albone scored with just 1:47 to go in the first half as Dusett earned the assist.

Lyndonville then put a firm lock on the victory as Rhiannon Burgess scored two quick goals midway through the second half, the first off an assist from Albone and the second from Maddy Boyle.

Makenzie Muck earned the shutout in goal for the Lady Tigers.

Improving to 7-8-2, Lyndonville will next visit No. 2 Arkport at 6 p.m. Saturday.

Avoca finishes the season at 4-12.


Roy-Hart 1, Tonawanda 0 OT
Emma Lindke scored a goal in overtime off an assist from Ava Bligh to earn No. 4 seed Roy-Hart a 1-0 upset victory at No. 3 Tonawanda.

Ashley Bower made 16 saves in goal for the Lady Rams to earn the shutout.


Wilson 4, Medina 0
No. 2 Wilson blankied No. 15 Medina 4-0 as Kasey Neumann scored two goals and Lauren Austin and Jessica Deline each netted one.


Fredonia 2, Albion 0
No. 7 Fredonia scored a goal in each half to oust No. 7 Albion 2-0.

Albion Coach Bruce Blanchard cited defenders Cristal Quintana, Mandi Covis and Jacia Schick and midfielder Emily Blancard for playing strong games.


Akron 12, Eden 0
Getting goal production from 10 different players, No. 4 Akron romped to a 12-0 victory over No. 13 Eden. Katie Apholz had 3 goals and Cailin Regan 1 goal and 5 assists to lead the Lady Tigers.


Newfane 3, Alden 0
No. 9 Newfane bested No. 8 Alden 3-0 as Kayleigh Daniels scored two goals and Emily Foltz one for the Lady Panthers.


Field Hockey
Holland 5, Medina 1

No. 8 Holland defeated visiting No. 9 Medina 5-1 this afternoon in the pre quarterfinal round of the Section V Class C field hockey playoffs.

Sarah Granchelli scored the Medina goal off an assist from Bailey Allen.

Holland will next visit top seeded Barker on Friday.


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