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Thursday, January 15, 2015 at 10:46 pm

No. 16 Cougars pull away from Thudnerwolves; Slow start sinks women

post by Andrew Crofts in basketball, GCC, sports

The 16th ranked GCC men's basketball team shot better than 56-percent to drop visiting Niagara County Community College on Thursday night and improve to 1-1 in Western New York Athletic Conference (WNYAC) play.

The Cougars and Thunderwolves went back-and-forth in the first half with neither team holding a lead higher than four. Ervin Mitchell scored 12 of his game-high 26 points in the opening half and was the only scorer to reach double figures during the first 20-minutes. Both teams went into the break tied at 40 apiece.

Trailing 59-58 midway through the second, Genesee went on an 8-0 run to take the lead and the Cougars did not trail again. GCC led by as much as 17 and went on to win, 98-84.

Naquil Jones finished with 25 points, seven rebounds and three assists, Jason Perry Murray recorded a double-double with 15 points and 11 boards, Joshua Doughty added 16 points and eight assists and Mitchell also grabbed six rebounds.

Genesee (13-3, 1-1) snaps a two-game losing streak with the win and the Cougars will return to action at home on Saturday at 3 p.m. against No. 10 Monroe Community College.

(Naquil Jones (white) eyes up his defender in Thursday night’s win over Niagara County CC. Jones finished with 25 points and seven rebounds for the #16 Cougars)

 

 

The Genesee Community College women's basketball team started off 6-31 in the first half of Thursday night's Western New York Athletic Conference (WNYAC) showdown with No. 20 Niagara County Community College, and fell to 0-2 in conference play after a 68-49 loss to the visiting Thunderwolves.

The Cougars gave up a 12-0 run early in the opening period to fall behind 22-8 and managed only 18 total points in the first half.

Terra Clanton led GCC with 10 points, all 10 of which came in the second half. Breana Gleaton finished with 10 rebounds and eight points, Hillary Rivera added nine points and six boards and Tekia Gary grabbed six rebounds and finished with four points.

Genesee (9-6, 0-2) connected on just two of 16 three point attempts on the night and committed 17 turnovers in the loss. The Cougars will return to action at home on Saturday afternoon at 1 p.m. against No. 6 Monroe Community College.

Thursday, January 15, 2015 at 8:01 am

Athletes looking to improve performance can get an edge at new facility in Batavia

post by Howard B. Owens in batavia, business, sports

Getting young athletes ready to compete at a higher level is one of the primary missions of Athletes Edge, a new training facility on East Main Street, co-owned and operated by Ben Buchholz.

Buchholz is a coach with Batavia High's football and baseball programs and he said what he's seeing today is local schools squaring off against Monroe County schools, and those athletes have taken on more challenging training routines during the off-season.

It's no longer enough just to show up on the first day of practice and expect to be ready to go. Young athletes need to train during the off-season.

"We're falling behind what we have to do to help us get better in every aspect of sports," Buchholz said. "We need to do more off-season stuff and this gives kids a chance to really get in here and do it. Now a lot of kids are doing a lot more off-season work and it shows in season. To compete, you've got to do it because everybody else is doing it."

The Blue Devils' deep run in post-season football is an example of how good off-season training can pay off, Buchholz said.

When you walk into Athletes Edge, if you're expecting a gym, you'll be struck by what you don't see. There are no weight benches, universal machines, dumbbells or barbells.

Modern athlete training is no longer about just pushing around heavy slabs of cast iron.

It's about speed, agility and stamina, and that's where Buchholz puts the emphasis.

The training tools at Athletes Edge involve boxes and stretch bands, but much of what is taught and trained is about body weight.

Plyometric workouts, which involve body weight and explosive movements, are a big part now of even the most elite athlete's daily routine.

"It's getting away from lifting huge heavy weights and getting into more athletic movement with strength," Buchholz said.

The facility's batting cage and pitcher's mound might leave the impression on a visitor that there is an emphasis at Athletes Edge on baseball, and that wouldn't be an incorrect perception, but the facility and training is open to all athletes and all sports. Notre Dame hockey, for example, is considering a team training session, Buchholz said.

Le Roy and Alexander's baseball teams have both already been in for a session since the business opened a month ago.

There's training available, also, for younger athletes. Athletes Edge is sponsoring travel baseball teams for youths from 8 and under to 12 years old.

Buchholz also hosts group events, such as birthday parties for youths. Those events might involve activities such as dodgeball or kickball or other activities.

"Whatever parents want to do, we set it up and just roll with it," Buchholz said.

Athletes Edge is located at 214 E. Main St., Suite #3, Batavia. The phone number is (585) 356-5995. The business is co-owned by Sam Antinore.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015 at 3:00 pm

Photos: Batavia beats Notre Dame in hockey, 4-2

post by Howard B. Owens in Batavia HS, high school sports, hockey, Notre Dame, sports

In the second meeting of the year, with another to come, Batavia beat Notre Dame at Falleti Ice Arena, 4-2.

The win evens the season series at 1-1 and improves the Ice Devils record to 4-4-1.

Aaron Feary scored two goals; Cameron Ells had one and two assists for Batavia/Alexander, with Bryce Polito getting an empty-net goal in the closing seconds of the game.

Reid Rademacker gave Notre Dame an early 1-0 lead and Devin Grimshaw scored with eight seconds left.

James Cryer had 15 saves for Batavia and Ethan Conrad had 25 for the Fighting Irish.

The Irish are now 4-8 on the season.

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Sunday, January 11, 2015 at 7:56 pm

Batavia Bantam Empire Triumphs Over Monroe County - North (2)

post by Jill Franclemont in Bantam Empire, GAHA, hockey, sports
Batavia Ramparts (Bantam Empire) vs. Monroe County Youth Hockey - North (Bantam 2)
 
Saturday, January 10, 8:10pm at Falletti Ice Rink in Batavia
 
Final score: 4-1 Batavia
 
Batavia Goals: James Reardon, assist Eve Murray & Matt Saj; Tom Mellon, assist Scott Tanner; Scott Tanner, assist Nate Hamilton & Issak Ward; Matt Saj, assist James Reardon & Nick Baumler
 
Goalie: Chris Klein
 
Team sponsor: Clark Patterson Lee - Design Professionals
Friday, January 9, 2015 at 4:54 pm

Batavia wins defensive battle to wrest Rotary trophy from Notre Dame

post by Howard B. Owens in basketball, Batavia HS, high school sports, Notre Dame, sports

In an effort to defeat Batavia's anticipated press in the Rotary Tournament championship game Thursday night, Dave Pero gave his girls a great plan -- quick passes down court to open shooters.

The Fighting Irish got a lot of open shot opportunities in the first half of the game. The part of the plan that didn't work is that too few baskets went through the hoop.

In the end, the Blue Devils prevailed in the defensive battle of rivals, 41-33.

"A game like this is great for us come sectional time," said Notre Dame Head Coach Dave Pero. "We're not going to see a team in our sectional bracket that presses like Batavia, so it's a great lesson we learned tonight of how to handle it."

Pero thought his team handled it pretty well, even mounting a bit of a comeback in the 4th quarter that had to make Batavia supporters a little nervous, but Batavia answered and held off the Fighting Irish charge to avenge defeats in the previous two Rotary tournaments.

"These guys hate me at practice, as hard as we run, but there's a reason," said Marty Hein, Batavia's head coach. "In the second half, and we don't turn the ball over any worse than we do in first half, but we seem to force more in the second half than anybody else. I think that gives us an edge."

Hein tightened his defense during half time, putting more pressure on Notre Dame at half court, which took away passing lanes and made it harder for offensive players to get behind his defenders. It created more turnovers.

Pero said his team was ready and primed for this game, but Batavia just did a little bit better.

"We had a great practice yesterday, perhaps one of the best practices we've had," Pero said. "Did we do a lot with the basketball? We did a little bit. We did a lot of talking. The girls were upbeat. They were responsive. When we got to the locker room upstairs, they were focused. When you get girls that are focused, a team like that, I don't care if they're boys or girls, win or lose, that's when you've got to give them credit for the way they prepared. They were awesome. They were ready for what they were going to give us, we just fell short. Next week is another week."

Hein said he and his team thought they were going to do a lot better.

"We're a little down, because we thought we should play better, myself included, but that's just a credit to them and their coach," Hein said.

Tiara Filbert, Batavia, was tournament MVP and scored 22 points Thursday. No other Blue Devil got into double figures. Essence Williams scored eight.

Shea Norton led Notre Dame with 10 points. Taylor DiMartino and Emma Francis each had eight.

(Filbert and Norton in the top photo)

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Friday, January 9, 2015 at 7:16 am

Genesee County football players honored in All-State awards

post by Howard B. Owens in football, high school sports, sports

The following players were honored for their 2014 season in the New York Sportswriters Association All-State awards.

  • Dom Mogavero, linebacker, Batavia, First Team, Class B
  • Tom Kelso, linebacker, LeRoy First Team Class C.
  • Greg Mruczek, quarterback, Batavia, Second Team, Class B
  • Mike McMullen, quarterback, Le Roy, Second Team, Class C
  • Steele Truax, linebacker, Elba/Byron-Bergen, Second Team, Class C
  • Honorable mentions in Class D: Josh Johnson, Notre Dame; Tyler Laird, Alexander; Zach Shivlock, Alexander; Allen Chatt, Oakfield-Alabama

UPDATED to include Tom Kelso. who was inadvertantly left out of the original post. Apologies to the Kelso family.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015 at 2:10 pm

Batavia and Notre Dame advance to finals in Rotary Tournament at GCC

Outside the GCC gym last night, the weather was pretty sloppy, but not as sloppy as the basketball game going on inside.

In the second game of the annual Rotary tournament, matching Notre Dame and Alexander, there were turnovers and missed shots and refs who were seemingly calling an inordinate number of traveling penalties and questionable jump balls. 

The final score was 37-22.

"It's was a sloppy game," said Dave Pero, Fighting Irish head coach. "What more can I tell you. It was just a sloppy game."

Pero knows he'll need a better performance out of his girls Thrusday night when they take on the Lady Blue Devils in the tournament championship.

Batavia beat Midlakes 55-32 in the tournament opener.

Notre Dame has taken the previous two Rotary Tournament finals against Batavia, and both coaches said they're ready to lock horns again.

"They'll throw out all the stops and we'll be ready and they'll be ready and it should be fun," Pero said. "I like our chances, but we can't play like we did tonight. But Thursday's another night."

Give the Lady Trojans credit, they pushed hard on defense and even with a team of girls with perhaps an average height of maybe about 5' 4", they managed to pull down quite a few rebounds against a team with three starters over six foot.  In the first half, nearly every trip down the court resulted in numerous second and third chance tries at baskets.  

Unfortunately for Alexander, nothing fell.

"It'ss been like that all year," said Alexander's head coach, Marcia Hirsch. "Our defense has been so good, but we just haven't been able to score."

The loss puts the Lady Trojans, who've managed as many as 50 points just twice this season, at 4-4.

Alexander applied pressure to Notre Dame at half court with some success, but on those rare possessions that resulted in a basket for the Trojans, they used a full court press and Notre Dame seemed out of rhythm all night.

That's pretty much the kind of defense the Irish will see when they meet Batavia in the championship game.

Head Coach Marty Hein said the Blue Devils will use pressure and the team's deep bench to compensate for Notre Dame's height advantage.

“We talked about trying to make that our identity,” Hein said. “We’re not a big team but we’ve got depth this year, so we run, run, run and press. We’re doing it for 32 minutes if we have to do it for 32 minutes.”

Both Alexander and Notre Dame suffered key injuries that disrupted their offenses.  Brett Stephens suffered an ankle injury crumpled to the court in the second quarter. A possession or two later, Emily McCracken fell down in the same exact spot.  Both are being evaluated and are considered day-to-day.

For Batavia, Essence Williams notched a double-double with a game-high 15 points and 11 rebounds, Tiara Filbert added 14 points, eight rebounds, six assists and five steals. Sam Cecere, recently returned from an injury, scored nine points and added seven rebounds.

Shea Norton and Rebecca Krenzer led the Notre Dame attack, both with double-doubles. Norton had 14 points and 17 rebounds along with four blocks and four assists. Krenzer scored 12 points and grabbed 13 rebounds.

For Alexander, Sydney Breton had seven points and five rebounds. Jayna Wright scored four points and had five rebounds, while Karli Phillips grabbed five rebounds.

Both Pero and Hein expect a tough, competitive game Thursday night in the final at GCC.

"It should be fun," Pero said.

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Sunday, January 4, 2015 at 11:21 am

Le Roy piles up points against Notre Dame in renewed rivalry game

post by Howard B. Owens in basketball, high school sports, Le Roy, Notre Dame, sports

Saturday, on the gleaming polished hardwood of Notre Dame High School, it was the first time brothers Mike and Rick Rapone faced off as head coaches.

It was the first time in more than a half-dozen years Notre Dame and Le Roy met in a regular season basketball game.

It turned out that it was the first time this season that the Oatkan Knights scored at least 70 points.

The offensives' explosion also sent the Fighting Irish to their first home defeat in 62 games.

"We struggled all year," said Rick Rapone, head coach of the now 2-5 Knights. "We haven't made our shots. We had a tough transition from football to basketball. Those kids had a great year. Eleven of my 13 kids are football players. We struggled to shoot, struggled to shoot, struggled to shoot. Tonight, we couldn't miss."

Le Roy was 31-66 from the floor (47 percent) and 10-19 from beyond the arch (52) percent and five players hit double figures in scoring.

Nick Egeling 15, Kody Lamkin 13,Tom Kelso and Ryan Boyce, 11 each and Tom Dunn, 10. Dylan Laney was a point shy of hitting the decade mark.

Mike McMullen scored only five points, but helped lead his team on the court and contributed 10 rebounds, 12 assists, two steals and three blocked shots.

"I told the kids before, our record was not an indicator of the kind of basketball team we are and we probably just beat the top basketball program, them and Batavia High, in this area, on their court," Rick Rapone said. "They had a 61-game home winning streak that we just snapped. It's great for the boys."

The Irish drop to 4-2 on the 78-59 loss.

"The team that wanted it more won," Notre Dame's Mike Rapone said. "We didn't show up with the attitude it takes to win a game like this. I've been warning them all week that records don't mean anything when you play a game like this. Le Roy showed up to play and we didn't."

Josh Johnson had 16 points and Tyler Prospero had 12. Caleb Nellis and C.J. Suozzi each had eight.

Mike Rapone said the two teams used to meet every year, but a Le Roy head coach a few years ago stopped scheduled games with Notre Dame, even though the home-and-home series each year was always a big draw.

Saturday, even the JV game (Notre Dame won 45-36) filled the bleachers and the crowd jammed onto the stage and spilled out into the hallway of the gym. 

Fans of both teams were boisterous and the arena was filled with a championship-game feel.

As for the contest of brothers, both coaches downplayed the significance of the matchup. They embraced before the game and then got down to business.

The scoring outburst by the Knights might signal a turnaround for Le Roy's season, Mike Rapone noted. They made it hard for the Irish to get back in the game, once they fell behind in the second quarter.

"They hit a lot of big shots and they got the lead," Mike Rapone said. "When we made a run at them, they hit the shots they needed."

Rick Rapone said his boys were obviously happy with the win and he was clearly proud of their effort.

"They are excited and they should be," Rick Rapone said. "They beat a hall of fame coach, a top-notch program, I think the winningest program in Section V, on their court. Come on, hall of fame coach, 61-game winning streak, their court, top program, the kids deserve it all. They did fantastic."

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Saturday, January 3, 2015 at 9:11 pm

Batavia Bantam Empire Ties Rochester Youth Hockey (D'Arcy)

post by Jill Franclemont in Bantam Empire, GAHA, hockey, Ramparts, sports
Batavia Ramparts (Bantam Empire) vs. Rochester Youth Hockey (D'Arcy)
 
Saturday, January 3, 6:50pm at Falletti Ice Rink in Batavia
 
Final score: 4-4
 
Batavia Goals: Tom Mellon assist by Eve Murray; Nate Hamilton assist by Tom Mellon; Nick Baumler assist by Tom Mellon; Tom Mellon assist by Nick Baumler
 
Goalie: Mitchel Pangrazio
 
Team sponsor: Clark Patterson Lee - Design Professionals
Friday, January 2, 2015 at 4:37 pm

Elite travel baseball tryouts to be held for 8- and 9-year-olds

post by Billie Owens in sports

Press release:

Team New Era Baseball will hold tryouts for its 8- and 9-year-old rookie elite travel baseball program on Sunday Jan. 18th and Sunday Jan. 25th at 3 p.m. at New Era Park, Depew, 3950 Broadway, Erie county.

For more  information or to register for the tryout, visit www.teamnewerabaseball.com <http://www.teamnewerabaseball.com/> or contact Rich Wozniak at New Era Park at 716-681-3001.

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