Online News. Community Views.

>> Download <<
The Batavian Mobile
Droid | iPhone

Recent comments

Site Sponsors

sports

December 11, 2014 - 4:09pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, football, sports, high school sports, Batavia HS.

The Batavia Blue Devils Head Football Coach Brennan Briggs will be recognized on the field Sunday before the Buffalo Bills game against the Green Bay Packers as the Buffalo Bills/National Guard Coach of the Week for week 11.

The school will receive a $1,000 contribution to the football program as a result of the award.

During the game, Briggs will be seated inside the Red Zone section, complements of the Buffalo Bills.

File photo.

December 10, 2014 - 12:13pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, basketball, sports, high school sports, Batavia HS.

Turnovers bedeviled the Lady Blue Devils in their home-game debut for the 2014-15 season as they suffered their first defeat of the campaign, losing to Mendon 54-33.

This is a better team than they they showed Tuesday night with the four returning starters, Essence Williams, Tiara Filbert, Sam Cecere and Madison McCulley.

"We've got a great group of girls," Head Coach Marty Hein said. "They're all returners. We lost one senior. Our bench is stepping into their jobs. We'll be there. It just wasn't a good night tonight."

It was a sloppy first quarter for both Mendon and Batavia, with both teams struggling to retain possession. Batavia (1-1) took a 15-10 lead. But Mendon started to find its rhythm in the second quarter, scoring 18 points and holding Batavia to nine points.

The game became lopsided in the third quarter, with Mendon scoring 15 while the Lady Blue Devils didn't knock down a single field goal and scoring its lone point on a free throw.

Batavia needs to be more aggressive on offense, Hein said, pushing the ball up the court faster on inbounds and transitions.

"When we push the ball, we're a much better team," Hein said. "In the last five minutes, we were looking ahead, running the floor and we did better. It was the same thing in Albion. We waltzed the ball up the floor, and if you're meeting good pressure, you're not getting into your offense. When we're actually running the floor, at least we're getting their defense below the foul line."

Filbert, a junior, remains the team's offensive fire power. She scored 16 points Tuesday and has 25 on the season along with 13 rebounds and nine steals. 

McCully had seven points and Williams had four.

Now, Hein said, the team knows what it needs to work on.

"There's nothing wrong with a loss as long as we learn something from it," Hein said.

To purchase prints of photos, click here.

December 10, 2014 - 11:58am
posted by Steve Ognibene in batavia, basketball, sports, high school sports, Batavia HS.

Blue Devils got off to a heartbreaking loss in their first game last night versus the Pittsford Mendon Knights.  Senior Jeff Redband led the devils with a game high 32 points and added 15 rebounds, 5 assists, 3 blocks.  The 1st qtr Mendon sunk three from 3pt. range and led 19-14.  

2nd quarter Batavia was down by 10 and rallied back to cut Mendon’s lead to 4 leading at halftime 32-28.  Batavia went on a run where Freshman Tee Sean Alayla and Jeff Redband added a couple 3 pt. plays to take the lead after 3 quarters 45-42. 

Batavia was down by 2 and Jeff Redband sunk a key basket and both teams ended tied 56 each sending the game into overtime.  However Batavia’s turnovers got them in trouble where Mendon capitalized by adding 6 points versus Batavia’s 2 and won the game 62-58 in overtime.  

Mendon’s Zuril Hendrick and Daniel Jacob each scored 17 points on the night.  Batavia’s Junior Malachi Chenault tallied 10 points and 10 rebounds giving him a double, double and Senior Jerrett Laskett added 9 points for Batavia. 

Batavia hosts Brighton this Friday at 7:45pm for their first home game.

(photo above) Batavia #24 Junior forward Malachi Chenault going for 2.  

(photo below) Batavia #3 Junior guard Greg Mruczek getting ready for a pass.

(photo above) Batavia #14 Junior guard Trevor Sherwood jumpshot 

(photo below) Batavia's freshman #0 Tee Sean Alaya shooting for 3 points.

Batavia #40 Senior forward Jeff Redband layup for 2 points in the 4th quarter to tie the game:

December 9, 2014 - 9:21pm
posted by Rhonda Pangrazio in sports.

After suffering a couple of disappointing losses, the Reed Eye Associates’ Batavia Ramparts Pee Wee III team has practiced hard, made small adjustments, and fought their way back to post two recent victories.  The Pee Wee III team started November strong with a scrimmage win over Brockport, but on Sunday, November 2nd, the team suffered their second loss on the season versus Jamestown.  November continued to be a challenging month for the Reed Eye Associates’ Batavia Ramparts Pee Wee III team and misery continued earning a tie during a hard fought game versus the Buffalo Bisons.  Late November brought another agonizing loss for the team during a game at home against the Niagara Purple Eagles.

The Reed Eye Associates’ Batavia Ramparts Pee Wee III team has been powerful all season and has left a difficult November behind.  They have battled back to collect back-to-back wins versus Brockport and Jamestown posting game scores of 4-1 and 5-0.  Every player is contributing to the team’s success, showing great amounts of teamwork and collaborating to gather more victories.  Lighting the lamp during the two recent wins were forwards Colin Dodge, Zackary Geitner, Alex Totten, Sean Pies, and Maxwell Hutchins.  Also adding to the scoreboard was defenseman, Jedidiah Reese.

The Reed Eye Associates’ Batavia Ramparts Pee Wee III team carries their overall season record of 11-3-1 to Hyde Park on Sunday to face the Niagara Coyotes.

December 9, 2014 - 9:05am
posted by Howard B. Owens in basketball, sports, Milestones.

Press release:

Hobart College senior guard Andrew Hoy (Batavia/Batavia, N.Y.) was named to the Liberty League Men's Basketball Weekly Honor Roll by the conference office today. He was named to the All-Wendy's College Classic second team after leading Hobart with 16.7 ppg in the three-game tournament last week.

Hoy shared team-high honors with 18 points and added five rebounds in a 67-60 setback to Division II Roberts Wesleyan in the first round. In the second round, Hoy produced 15 points, three assists, and three rebounds in an 80-78 overtime loss to Brockport. He wrapped up the tournament with a game-high 17 points, four rebounds, and three assists in a 68-59 win over RIT. For the week, Hoy shot 50 percent from the floor, 47.6 percent from 3-point range, and 80 percent from the free throw line.

Hoy is off to an impressive start this year, leading the team in scoring with 14.4 ppg. He's third on the team averaging 5.0 rpg and second producing 2.6 apg. Hoy leads the Liberty League in 3-point shooting, averaging 2.8 makes per game with a league best .452 3-point percentage.

The Statesmen (3-2) are back in action on Wednesday, Dec. 10 when they visit Rochester.

December 6, 2014 - 6:48pm
posted by Andrew Crofts in basketball, GCC, sports.

Despite facing a 17-point deficit at halftime, the Genesee Community College women's basketball team improved to 5-3 this season after a comeback win against visiting Cuyahoga Community College on Saturday afternoon.

Cuyahoga started the game on a 14-0 run to grab the lead five-minutes into the game.

GCC committed 18 turnovers in the first frame and were out-rebounded 22-13. The Cougars trailed 44-27 at the break.

In the second half, Genesee battled back behind Shanell Glover and Elsa Andersson, who scored 12 and 10 points respectively in the period to get GCC back in the game.

Genesee trailed 70-68 with under 10-seconds to play before Thais Matté converted a layup in the final seconds to knot the game, which went into overtime.

Andersson scored the first seven points of the extra session for GCC to put the Cougars in front 77-70. Genesee held Cuyahoga to just one field goal in overtime and outscored the Challengers 14-3 to earn an 84-73 win.

Latricia Stephens led the way for Genesee with a game-high 17 points. Andersson finished with 16 points, Glover added 14 points and seven rebounds, Matté chipped in six points and three assists and Terra Clanton and Breana Gleaton each scored nine points.

Genesee improves to 2-0 at home this season and the Cougars will return to action next Saturday in the Cougar Holiday Classic Tournament against the Community College of Rhode Island at 2 p.m.

 

 

The Genesee Community College men's basketball winning streak is now up to six after the Cougars dropped visiting No. 13 Cuyahoga Community College on Saturday afternoon, 89-74.

After falling behind 8-3 early on, GCC went on an 11-0 run to take the lead and the Cougars did not trail the rest of the game.

Naquil Jones scored 13 of his team-high 19 points in the first half and Genesee shot better than 55-percent from the floor in the opening frame. The Cougars held a 50-27 advantage at the break.

GCC held a lead as high as 26 in the second half but Cuyahoga got to within single-digits late when the Challengers trailed 81-72 with 4:18 to play. The Cougars responded by going on an 8-2 run to end the game.

Genesee had a total of six players reach double-figures in scoring. Ervin Mitchell finished with 18 points and six rebounds, Jason Perry Murray added 13 points and eight rebounds, Joshua Doughty had 12 points and five assists and Didier Antoine and Gabriel Burroughs each added 10 points. Jones also had eight assists and six boards.

Genesee (6-1) will return to the floor at home next Saturday in the Cougar Holiday Classic Tournament. The Cougars will play the Community College of Rhode Island at 8 p.m.

December 6, 2014 - 6:18pm
posted by Jill Franclemont in sports, hockey, GAHA.
Batavia Ramparts (Bantam Empire) vs. Webster Cyclones (Bantam 2)
 
Saturday, December 6, 3:10pm at Webster
 
Final score: 6-4 Batavia
 
Batavia Goals: Matt Saj, assist Seth Seppala; Tom Mellon, assist Matt Saj; Shane McClurg; Tom Mellon, assist Nathan Hamilton; Nick Baumler, assist Eve Murray; Matt Saj, assist Aidan Franclemont
 
Goalie: Mitchel Pangrazio
 
Team sponsor: Clark Patterson Lee - Design Professionals
December 6, 2014 - 12:53pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in basketball, sports, high school sports, Le Roy.

After a pre-season disrupted by a championship run by the football team, three days of practice lost to snowy weather and Thanksgiving, Le Roy's basketball team is still working out some kinks.

A rebuilding team of Warsaw Tigers got a taste Friday night of what a kinkless Oatka Knights might look like.

The Knights pressured on defense, forced turnovers and converted fast breaks into buckets to put 64 points on the board compared to 37 for the Tigers.

The win comes after a season opening 62-47 loss to York.

"Today we played with more energy, more flow to what we want to do," said Le Roy's Head Coach Rick Rapone. "In another week or two, we'll be right where we should be. We'll be fine."

Kody Lamkin had his second double-double in two games with 19 points and 10 rebounds. Nick Egeling had 10 points and 10 rebounds

"Those are the guys we would expect to pretty much do it for us every game," Rapone said.

Dylan Laney sparked the offense early, scoring 10 points for the game.

Mike McMullen was playing on a sore ankle, but Rapone praised his strong performance as the team's floor leader. 

Coming off an 0-18 season, the Tigers are now coached by Steve Baker. Baker has seven years experience coaching basketball. The first six with modifieds and JV. He was Warsaw's boys varsity head coach five years ago, then he became a father and took time off from coaching. He agreed to take the position again this season after he and his wife moved closer to the school.

In Le Roy, the Tigers got a taste of the kind of fast-paced, high-pressure defense and transition offense Baker would like to instill in the Warsaw scheme.

"Instead of sitting in a half-court offense, I'd really like to start pushing the floor," Baker said. "That's a big thing to me."

His team his learning, he said. Last night, when they went man-to-man for part of the second half, they held Le Roy to just eight points. That was a good sign, Baker said.

The goal is to improve every game, every practice and that's happening, he said.

"I notice improvement every day," Baker said. "I'm getting compliments from the other coaches and officials. The kids are playing a lot better."

To purchase prints, click here.

December 5, 2014 - 3:02pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in basketball, sports, elba, high school sports.

Lyndonville got a good taste Thursday night of the kind of team the Elba Lady Lancers hope to be in 2014-15: an aggressive defense that generates turnovers and a disciplined offense that uses spacing and passing to create open looks.

The result, Elba 64, Lyndonville 32.

"We try to share the ball," said Head Coach Tom Redband. "If we don't, we're not going to be very good. And we try to eliminate shot attempts."

Possession after possession Thursday, the Lancers swatted the balls from Tiger hands or snatched passes midflight.

The turnovers were often created by pure pressure on ball handlers.

The Lady Lancers are a team that will be looking to define itself early in the season following the graduation of last year's point guard Kelsey Bezon.

"She was our leader," Redband said. "She was our facilitator. We had to wait and see how everyone reacted to new roles and they're doing a great job of dealing with it. People have been filling roles. They step in and they step up."

Returning as starters are Alex Reigle, Alyssa Bogue, Jennifer Pedro and Haley Brown.

Redband is looking for big things from that core group to help Elba make another run at post-season play.

December 3, 2014 - 7:47pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in basketball, sports, high school sports, Notre Dame.

The thing you'll notice about the Notre Dame Girls Basketball Team this year is they're going to have some big players crashing the boards.

Shea Norton is 6' 2". Rebecca Krenzer is 6' 1". Taylor DiMartino is 6' 2". Michelle Martinucci is 5' 11".

"This is the biggest team I've ever had," said Head Coach Dave Pero.

It's still a young team -- there are only three seniors on the squad and all of the bigs are juniors -- so the girls still have a lot to learn, but they're showing progress, Pero said. 

"I like what we have. We have a really, really nice group of girls. They're working very, very hard."

The goal, as always with Fighting Irish basketball, is to dominate on defense and make points on transitions.

"We always want to keep teams in 40s. If we can keep teams in the 40s, 45, we've got a chance to win."

The three seniors are Krysta Tomaszewski (currently injured), Emily McCracken and Emma Francis.

McCracken and Francis are both guards, team captains, and Pero said they are good shooters who should help score some points.

He said the team is eight or nine players deep. Also expected to contribute are Hannah Bowen and Callie McCulley.

McCulley is a familiar name, of course, to Notre Dame hoops fans and the youngest McCulley (who is 5' 10") to make a varsity roster. She shows a lot of promise, Pero said, even as an eighth-grader.

"When you bring up young players, you're going to live and die with the good things they do and the bad things they do, but we think she's ready and we expect her to come off the bench and give us a hand."

The Notre Dame roster, on paper, looks strong. When the team opens its season at 7 p.m., Dec. 10, in Oakfield, we'll get to see how all those big numbers translate to points on the board.

December 2, 2014 - 9:01pm
posted by Andrew Crofts in basketball, GCC, sports.

The Genesee Community College men's basketball team improved to 4-1 this season after cruising past visiting St. John Fisher JV on Tuesday night, 91-61.

Ervin Mitchell recorded a double-double and led the way with a game-high 26 points and 10 rebounds. Naquil Jones added 17 points and five assists and Devante Carolina finished with 12 points and nine rebounds.

GCC held a single-digit lead at half but outscored the Cardinals 53-32 in the final period and led by as much as 37.

The Cougars shot 50% from the floor in the game and were plus-27 in rebounding on the night.

Jason Perry Murray came off the bench to score 10 points and Didier Antoine added eight points and six rebounds.

Genesee will return to action on Wednesday at Elmira College (JV) at 7 p.m.

 

November 28, 2014 - 2:19pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, basketball, sports, high school sports, Batavia HS.

The Blue Devils will be a team in search of points when the squad hits the hardwood Dec. 10.

We know senior Jeff Redband can hit buckets full of baskets, but we'll have to see who is going to help him out.

It could be Jerrett Laskett, who showed a deft touch at times coming off the bench last season as a sixth man. Or Malachi Chenault, a big man in the front court who has been working on his offense. There's also Alex Canty, who was MVP of the JV team last year. Jake Schrider is developing well as a young big man. Ryan Hogan returns from a sojourn in Brockport and has shown potential. Trevor Sherwood is athletic and will compete for time at point guard. Greg Mruczek is a returning starter. Freshman TeeSean Ayala seems unstoppable from three-point range in practices and scrimmage, but he's yet unproven in a varsity game that counts.

"We've got a lot of returners," said Head Coach Buddy Brasky. "We've got experience and good leadership.  We'll be a pretty good defensive team, but time will tell how good we are offensively."

The team is getting a bit of a late start following the football team's team run in the post season. Among the starters, only Redband didn't play a fall sport and is in "good basketball shape," Brasky said.  There's some rust to scrape off with some of the other players, but "they're working hard at it," the coach said.

The team will look foremost to Laskett to replace the points of graduate Justice Fagan, but he showed flashes last year of scoring ability.

"When he gets it going, he can really get it going," Brasky said.

Chenault is a junior who is looking more athletic coming into the season and Brasky said he worked reallly hard at developing his offensive post presence over the summer.

Then there is Ayala (top photo with Brasky in the background), who can hit 10 or 12 three pointers in a row in practice and scored six times from beyond the arch in a scrimmage the other day.  He's just a freshman. He seems to have the touch, but there's still a lot he needs to learn about basketball, especially in Brasky's defensive scheme.

"We're trying to bring him along slowly, but he's got a skill that's hard to teach and hard to find," Brasky said. "He can really shoot the three."

Even with this looming question mark -- who will the consistent scorers be -- Brasky is feeling good enough about his squad to think a league title or even sectional title isn't out of the question.

"I'm pretty optimistic, but it's going to take some hard work and we're going to have to find some kids who can score a little bit to help Jeff out with the scoring load," Brasky said. "You know, last year everybody boxed-and-oned him and triangle-and-twoed with him and Justice. We need other guys to put the ball in the basket so it doesn't have to do it all himself."

Jeff Redband shooting.

Malachi Chenault with a slam.

Jerrett Laskett.

To purchase prints, click here.

November 27, 2014 - 9:47am
posted by Howard B. Owens in basketball, sports, high school sports, Le Roy.

These are familiar names: Kody Lamkin, Nick Egeling, Tom Kelso and Mike McMullen.

To anybody who followed Le Roy football during the Oatkan Knights' sectional title season, Lamkin, Egeling and Kelso and McMullen are no strangers.

And those four athletes will be important cogs in the up tempo, pressure defense, pressure offense Le Roy's second-year basketball Coach Rick Rapone plans to run.

"Defensively, we're always strong," Rapone said. "We have strong, physical, very athletic kids. Defense has never been an issue for us. We're challenged on offense a little bit, but defensively, we're in pretty good shape."

Just as he did for the football team, Lamkin anchors the defense.

"He's our defensive stopper," Rapone said. "He covers the middle. He's strong, physical and our number-one rebounder last year and our third leading scorer."

Egling is the team's most gifted basketball player, Rapone said.

Kelso is a "defensive juggernaut," according to the coach. 

"He sets the pace for our transition and he covers the other team's best player all the time."

And the field general for football is also is also the captain of the court: Mike McMullen, the point guard.

"He's the key to everything we do. Last year he was predominately a pass-first guy, but we're going to need him to score some points this year. Nobody worked harder than he did in the off season on his shots and we like what we see so far."

At a practice a few days ago, Rapone was putting his team through its paces. Every drill is about movement and speed. The key to Knights' success, Rapone said, is preventing baskets and forcing errors.

"It starts with the defense. We press hard, man-to-man, turn the other team's mistakes into opportunities going the other way."

A successful off season has boosted his team's confidence, he said.

"They know they've improved as players and as a team. I'm excited that they're excited that they've seen some improvement."

There are some kids coming up the ranks as well, who Rapone thinks can contribute this year. Tom Dunn is up from JV and Rapone likes what he sees in sophomores Ryan Boyce and Josh Lowery.

"A sneaky good kid is Dave Englerth. He's the most improved in the off season."

All of this adds up, Rapone thinks, to a run at some titles.

"We're excited about our schedule. We play Avon twice. We think we've grown enough this year to contend for our division title, and that's a team we're going to have to beat."

There's also the cross-county battle of the brothers this year when Le Roy travels to Batavia to play the Mike Rapone-coached Notre Dame Fighting Irish.

"We're very excited about going up there and taking on their 61-game home winning streak. The kids are excited."

Playing against his brother's team, he said, isn't a big deal, though it might lead to some bragging rights at the family Christmas dinner.

"It's a great opportunity for our kids. You've been there. You know the environment you get when you play there, so our kids get the opportunity to go in there and compete. It's going to be great. One thing you know, you've watched these kids play football as well, the one thing they do is compete. They play hard and they compete."

That game is Saturday Jan. 3 at 6:30 p.m.

Le Roy opens the season at home against York, 7 p.m., Wednesday.

November 25, 2014 - 7:02pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in basketball, sports, high school sports, Notre Dame.

This is a first of a series of team previews for boys and girls basketball for the 2014-15 season. We'll get to as many teams as we can for previews before the start of the season.  

The triangle offense. The New York Knicks have been struggling to learn it, Notre Dame Head Coach Mike Rapone reminded his players at a recent practice, and they're a team of full-time, pro basketball players.

He doesn't expect his kids to master it, but a couple of key fundamentals could help a team that may not have a dominating scorer put a few more points on the board.

"We run just a small version of it," Rapone said. "High school students can't handle a real triangle. We don't have enough time to teach it. We concentrate on ball movement and body movement."

The triangle replaces traditional set plays. It relies on spacing and movement to create shot opportunities. With players spaced 10, 12, 15 feet apart and constant movement -- passes are preferred to dribbling, and every pass is accompanied by every offensive player changing their location on the floor -- the triangle tends to open holes and open players. (For more on the triangle, here's a recommended video).

Rapone thinks he has the talent on this team without a dominate big man to run a pretty lockdown defense. The key to winning is going to be transitions and getting open shooters.

"Defensively, we'll be fine, but we've got to make sure we score one more than the other guy, though," Rapone said.

One of Notre Dame's top scorers from last season, Josh Johnson, is back and Rapone hopes there are enough athletes on the team to step up and help distribute scoring opportunities. 

There are five seniors coming back from last season's Section V championship team and 11 juniors.

"Right now, we don't know who's going to start the first game," Rapone said. "Every day it looks like somebody different. We have 15 guys and I can make a case for any one of them."

Peter Daversa, Caleb Nellis, Dylan Fix, James Farmer, Tyler Prospero, C.J. Suozzi, Luca Zambito, Casey Midwick and Dakota Weidman all have the potential to make a difference on the squad.

Among them, however, isn't a kid more than 6' 3".

Size could be a problem, no matter who develops into a credible outside shooting threat.

"We're not going to be able to go inside for a lot of points, I don't think, but I hope I'm wrong, because the key to basketball is balance," Rapone said. "You want to establish one, then when they take that away, when they take the outside away, you go inside, when they take the inside away you go outside. You really need them both."

What Rapone sees as a tough schedule will include a home match against Le Roy, which will be the first time Mike Rapone has coached against brother and one-time assistant coach Rick Rapone.

"I hope he remembers that's his bench over there beause he's used to being on the otherside," Rapone said smiling.

The Le Roy game is at 6:30 p.m., Jan. 3. Rapone expects a full house.

The Fighting Irish kick off the season at home Dec. 11 against Oakfield-Alabama. Game time is 7 p.m.

 

November 23, 2014 - 5:57pm
posted by Jill Franclemont in sports, hockey, GAHA.
Batavia Ramparts (Bantam Empire) vs. Perinton Youth Hockey (Bantam 2)
 
Sunday, November 23, 1:30pm at Paul Lewis Arena, Rochester
 
Final score: 2-1 Batavia
 
Batavia Goals: Shane McClurg, assist Matt Saj; Aidan Franclemont, assist Andrew Freeman
 
Goalie: Chris Klein
 
Team sponsor: Clark Patterson Lee - Design Professionals
November 22, 2014 - 3:59pm
posted by Jill Franclemont in sports, hockey, GAHA.
Saturday, November 22, 11:30am at Bill Gray's Iceplex (MCC) in Rochester
 
Final score: 9-4 Batavia
 
Batavia Goals: Aidan Franclemont, assist from Shane McClurg; Nick Baumler, assist from Scott Tanner; Aidan Franclemont, assist from Eve Murray and Shane McClurg; Tom Mellon (2); Shane McClurg, assist from Tom Mellon; Nick Baumler, assist from Matt Saj and James Reardon; Aidan Franclemont, assist from Tom Mellon and Shane McClurg; Matt Saj
 
Goalie: Mitchel Pangrazio
 
Team sponsor: Clark Patterson Lee - Design Professionals
November 21, 2014 - 3:19pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, sports, harness racing.

Press release:

As a direct result of the relentless snowstorm that has crippled most of Western New York, Batavia Downs has announced that it will forgo live racing for the remainder of the week. The programs that were originally scheduled for tonight (Nov. 21) and Saturday (Nov. 22) have been cancelled.

The decision was made jointly on Thursday by Batavia Downs management and the Western New York Harness Horsemen’s Association (WNYHHA) and both parties agreed it was the only thing to do.

Bruce Tubin, president of the WNYHHA said “In view of the devastating storm that has kept our horses from their daily exercise routine, our trainers from leaving their homes, and our blacksmiths and veterinarians from attending to our horses, I have mutually agreed with Batavia Downs management to cancel our Friday and Saturday race cards. There was physically no way for us to properly prepare our horses to race this weekend.”

Todd Haight, director/GM of live racing at Batavia Downs added “It would have been impossible for the equine athletes to compete at the highest level when most haven't been able to leave the barn for days. The decision to cancel this early takes the pressure off all parties involved.

"Our main goal now is get the barn area cleared of snow and the racetrack in the best possible condition for next Wednesday. We regret having to cancel but it was the right thing to do to make sure we didn’t experience any injuries on or off the track.”

Further concerns cited were about horsemen who ship in from areas that have been devastated by the snow and the changing conditions forecast over the next two days taking the weather from cold and snowy to a rapid meltdown and flooding by the weekend.

In light of these cancellations, pending approval from the New York State Gaming Commission, there will be two double-headers carded on the last two Saturdays of the meet. Nov. 29 and Dec. 6 will now offer two complete cards of racing at 12:15 and 6:35. Live racing at the Downs is scheduled to resume on Wednesday, Nov. 26. That leaves eight cards of live racing over six days.

Please note the new draw schedule. The Friday and Saturday afternoon cards will be drawn on Tuesday. The Saturday night cards will be drawn on Wednesday. And the final two Wednesday’s will be drawn on Friday, as always. The box will close at 9 a.m. If you have any questions please contact Race Secretary Joe Zambito at 585-344-6161.

Haight also noted that starting Wednesday, Nov. 26, the purses will increase by 20 percent in an effort to help the horsemen through the cancellations and as they come to the five week winter break at the end of this meet.

November 16, 2014 - 4:41pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, sports, harness racing.

By Tim Bojarski for Batavia Downs

Western Alumni ($11.40) took full advantage of a perfect pocket trip to score in the featured $9,000 Open pace at Batavia Downs on Saturday night (Nov. 15).

Driver Jim McNeight left hard from post seven with Western Alumni and took the lead from rail-rider American Bull (Kevin Cummings) by the eighth pole. But as soon as they crossed over to the pylons, American Bull completed the give-and-go by regaining the lead at the quarter in :28.4. After a more than pedestrian :59.3 half, the outer flow came fast led by Burton Blue Chip (Lee Dahn) first up, but not as fast as American Bull who upped the tempo with a :28.1 third panel. At that point the leader looked solid. But at the head of the stretch when the passing lane opened up, Western Alumni ducked inside and responded to McNeight’s highly animated urging to gain a head victory over a game American Bull in 1:56.3. Just Frank (Rock C Vinci) bested the rest for third.

It was the eighth win of the year for the 6-year-old Western Hanover gelding and the purse raised his 2014 earnings to $67,739 for owners North Creek Racing LLC. Western Alumni is trained by Jerry Nugent Jr.

The Downs leading driver, Kevin Cummings, followed up his five-win Friday night with a four-win effort on Saturday. He tallied with Tymal Torch ($29) and Union Man Hanover ($7) (to complete the $242.50 early double) as well as Flashy Trick ($4.80) and Fast Fool ($8.40). Drew Monti, Jim McNeight and Jack Flanigen all registered driving doubles.

Live racing reconvenes on Wednesday night (Nov. 19) with a 6:35 post time.

November 16, 2014 - 11:56am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, football, sports, high school sports, Batavia HS.

Six times during Saturday afternoon's regional championship match at Buffalo's All High Stadium the Blue Devils were on the brink of putting six on the scoreboard, and six times Batavia let the opportunity slip away.

The blown opportunities alone represent more points than Cheektowaga managed on their own in the Class B matchup.

"You can't win football games when you do that," Head Coach Brennan Briggs said after the 35-16 loss.

In five of the six times the Blue Devils reached the red zone but failed to score, Cheektowaga got the ball back on turnovers.

"It's disappointing turning the ball over so many times, but that's the game of football, Briggs said.

The other time Batavia came up short -- literally came up short -- was in the closing seconds of the half when Batavia had the ball inside the five with 1st and goal to go.

When fourth down rolled around and less than 10 seconds on the clock, the ball was two inches from the goal line. A Cheektowaga off sides put the ball on the one-inch line.

Batavia couldn't punch it in.

A score there would have made it 21-21 at the half.

Batavia's game plan called for the offensive to use the ground game, grind up precious minutes off the clock and keep Cheetowaga's quick-strike offense off the field as much as possible.

The fewer times the Warriors' Marshawn Gibson touches the ball, the better for any opponent.

Even though Gibson still carried the ball 12 times for 146 yards, plus an 81-yard reception, for four touchdowns, that part of the game plan worked.

On the first drive, Batavia learned that what film study revealed was true: Give the ball to Dominick Mogavero and let him chew up yards and the clock.

Time of possession tilted heavily in Batavia's favor, 33 minutes to 15 minutes, and Mogavero carried the ball 32 times for 160 yards.

"I feel a little bad for Anthony Gallo because he's such a good back, but our style of what we were doing, grinding it out, we saw how well that can work on that first drive, so we stuck with Dom because he's got a little bit more to him," Briggs said. "He just did a great job offensively and defensively."

Batavia made it look easy on the first drive of the game, scoring on a six-yard pass from Greg Mruczek to Gallo, but Cheektowaga struck quickly on its own first drive, as Gibson streaked 74 yards for a touchdown.

With the score 14-7, Briggs once again made a gutsy fourth-down play call. This time, a lateral to Trevor Sherwood who threw the ball cross field to a wide open Ryan Hogan for a 32-yard TD.

Then the wheels started to come off. A fumble, an interception, the failed goal line opportunity, and more fumbles and another interception in the second half just put Batavia in too deep of a hole.

Still, 2014 was an amazing season for the Batavia Devils, going 6-1 in the regular season and winning the program's first Section V title since 1991. The loss doesn't diminish a turnaround season.

"It still hasn't sunk in yet," Briggs said after the game. "We're very disappointed in the loss. We were hoping to keep moving on, but a Class B section V title is something for Batavia to be proud of and I think we can build off of this and do a lot of great things after this."

Mruczek, Gallo, Mogavero, along with Trevor Sherwood, Malachi Chenault, Noah Dobbertin and Danny Williams will all be back next year.

That's the core of any potential winning team right there, plus there are players in the pipeline, either from JV or varsity, ready to contribute.

"This (season) helped the underclassmen of Batavia football realize how important it is to be there in the off season," Briggs said. "Maybe we will get a little bit more commitment this off season from a kid who doesn't want to be there. We have a very good nucleus of kids coming back and I can't wait to get them going."

Top Photo: Gallo with the first score of the game.

Cheektowaga's Hakiem Black with a TD reception in the third quarter.

Dom Mogavero

Mruczek hands off to Mogavero.

Mogavero looks for a hole with Cheektowaga's Dylan Romanczak in pursuit.

Gunner Rapone wraps up Gibson in the backfield in the fourth quarter for one of the star back's rare loss of yardage runs.

Sherwood alone on the bench with his thoughts in the closing minute of Batavia's 35-16 loss to Cheektowaga.

November 16, 2014 - 10:01am
posted by Howard B. Owens in football, sports, high school sports, Le Roy.

It was one of those days for the Le Roy Oatkan Knights. One of those days when nothing goes right.

It didn't go right on the opening kick off, which Maple Grove/Chautauqua Lake's Mitch Padilla returned the ball some 80 yards to set up his team's first play from scrimmage on the Knight's two-yard line.

It didn't go right every time Le Roy had the ball. Not a single drive advanced further than the Dragons' 35 yard line.

For the first time all year, the Knights, who came into the game undefeated and the state's top ranked team in Class C, failed to score. 

As a coach said after the game, "we got beat by a better team. There's no shame in that."

Head Coach Brian Moran conceded his squad just couldn't match up against Maple Grove's speed.

The speed put defensive players in the Knights' backfield to stymie runs and pressure QB Mike McMullen. The speed opened holes for the fast and elusive Ryan Miller, who carried the ball 23 times for 208 yards and four touchdowns.

"That's one of the best Class C teams I've seen in 26 years," Moran said. "They deserve a lot of credit, their coaching staff and their kids, and I wish them all the best."

There was some hope that this talented Le Roy football team could have been the fourth team coached by Moran to reach the state finals, but it's never easy to win games in the post season. The level of competition gets better every week and you don't know how you match up until you play the games.

Moran finishes a 203-win career with a loss, but that isn't what was on his mind during the post game interview.

"I'll think what a pleasure it is to work with the kids," Moran said after being asked to reflect on his time as Le Roy's head coach. "We talk about it all the time, the wins and losses and the sectional titles, but the thing I'll miss the most is the kids."

There were clearly tears welling up behind Moran's Ray Ban sunglasses as he spoke.

Le Roy gained only 95 yards total offense, with 75 through the air as McMullen went 10-26 passing.

Most of McMullen's completions came on swing passes and short routes. The Dragons' defense simply gave him no time to get the ball down field accurately and speedy receiver Ryan McQuillen was double-teamed all afternoon.

"We knew coming in, watching the films, they were going to do that," Moran said.v"We tried to prepare for it, but to be honest with you, we couldn't match up in our preparation with the speed off the corners and their outside linebackers."

Le Roy was held to 20 yards on the ground, with Tom Kelso rushing for 19 on 10 carries.

Maple Grove's attack was entirely ground based. The Dragons' had 371 yards total offense. There wasn't a single yard of offense gained through the air.

The Dragons' advance to the state championship semi-finals with an 11-0 record.

"I'd be surprised to see anybody step up to the speed that they have in the rest of the state," Moran said.

Previously: For Brian Moran, the wins are nice, but boys becoming men is the bigger reward

Top Photo: A.J. Hulton hands off to Ryan Miller and Mitch Padilla runs along side to help disguise the direction of the run play.

Tom Kelso dragged down in the open field after a pass reception.

A Le Roy player with positive yardage late in the game. The ball was marked two yards behind where he's about to go out of bounds.

Mike McMullen pressured during a pass play.

Pages

Calendar

S M T W T F S
 
 
 
1
 
2
 
3
 
4
 
5
 
6
 
7
 
8
 
9
 
10
 
11
 
12
 
13
 
14
 
15
 
16
 
17
 
18
 
19
 
20
 
21
 
22
 
23
 
24
 
25
 
26
 
27
 
28
 
29
 
30
 
31
 
 

Copyright © 2008-2014 The Batavian. Some Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy | Terms of Service
Original content available for non-commercial use under a Creative Commons license.
Contact: Howard Owens, publisher (howard (at) the batavian dot com); (585) 250-4118

blue button