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September 25, 2016 - 10:27am
posted by Howard B. Owens in football, sports, pembroke, alexander, Notre Dame.

C.G. Finney/Northstar 36 Notre Dame of Batavia 7

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Pembroke edged Holley 34-26. (Photos by Rick Franclemont -- more here)

Alexander moved to 4-0 with a 46-0 win over Oakfield-Alabama/Elba.  QB P.J. Brennan was 5-10 passing for 116 yards and three TDs. He had two carries for 20 yards and two TDs. Jacob Bykowski, 12 carries for 51 yards and one TD. Chris McClinic, six carries for 47 yards and one TD reception. Dustin Schmeider, two catches, 26 yards and one TD, and three carries for 53 yards and a TD.  Derrick Busch, two receptions for 85 yards and a TD. Dan Hebelein, nine carries for 52 yards. On defense, Heberlein had one interception an three tackles. Job Smith, six tackles and a fumble recovery.

Notre Dame lost to C.G. Finney, 36-7.

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September 24, 2016 - 2:46pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, harness racing, Batavia Downs.

(Photo of Snapshot Springs with driver Drew Monti.)

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

Fresh off a solid win in Open II company last week, Snapshot Springs moved to the top class for resident trotters and took a new lifetime mark in winning the $10,500 Open at Batavia Downs on Friday night (Sept. 23).

With three horses leaving off the gate, it took until the quarter for the favored Kahoku (Kevin Cummings) to clear in :28.1. He then proceeded to lead the pack in single-file order to the half in :57.4. At that station, Snapshot Springs (Drew Monti) pulled first-over from fourth and motored up on the outside.

Up the backside, Snapshot Springs pulled even with Kahoku and at that point, Monti popped the plugs before they hit the three-quarters in 1:27.1. From there he cleared and opened up a two-length lead around the last turn. Then with mild urging from Monti down the lane, Snapshot Springs coasted home to a fairly easy two-length win in 1:57.

It was the seventh win of the year for Snapshot Springs ($8.40) and it enriched his 2016 earnings to $41,085 for owner/trainer Allan McCarty.

Bob Davis won both $5,000 divisions of the C.K.G. Billings races. In the trotting leg he scored a wire to wire win with V I P ($15.80) and in the pacing division he went from worst to first with Helena’s Hope ($7).

John Cummings Jr. had a driving triple while Drew Monti and Shawn Gray scored doubles. Trainers Edgar Clarke and Jeff Amann both sent two horses to the winner’s enclosure.

Racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Saturday night (Sept. 24) with a 6:15 post time.

September 24, 2016 - 2:27pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Le Roy, sports, football.

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It was supposed to be Le Roy's night -- new stadium facility at Hartwood Park, crowning a homecoming queen, a new half-time show from the marching band -- but there were some long faces after Hornell's Jack Henby stole the show.

The Red Raiders' back carried the ball 16 times for 229 yards and four touchdowns as the visitors quashed any high spirits with a 42-0 win.

Henby, fast and strong, hit holes quick and carried tacklers five and 10 yards at a time.

The first quarter looked like it might be a tighter game than some might have predicted, but with the score only 7-0 near the end of the quarter, the Oatkan Knights squandered a scoring opportunity with a couple of penalties. It was all Red Raiders the rest of the way.

Le Roy's OB Josh Laurie was 9-22 on the night for 98 yards. Ryan Boyce caught three passes for 36 yards and Reece Tresco, Canyon Roster and Gaven Cassidy each had two receptions. 

As a team, the offense managed only one yard on 20 rushing attempts.

Gaven Cassidy had six tackles, and with five each were Justin DiFalco, Luke Hogle, Josh Laurie and David Privatera.

In other local football news from Friday Night:

  • Ray Leach rushed for 136 yards and three touchdowns on 19 carries as Batavia notched another win, 32-7 over Attica. It's the fourth win for the Blue Devils. Jerry Reinhart was 10-17 passing for 107 yards and a touchdown. Antwan Odom caught six of those passes for 91 yards and a TD. Anthony Ray came up big on defense with eight tackles and a sack.
  • Bath over Cal-Mum/Byron-Bergen, 42-0​
  • Perry/Mount Morris over York/Pavilion, 38-14.

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To purchase prints, click here.

September 24, 2016 - 9:31am
posted by Howard B. Owens in outdoors, veterans, batavia, news, sports, hunting.

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Photo and story by Alex Feig, with our news partner, WBTA.

Operation Injured Soldiers was hosting military veterans for the beginning of geese-hunting season at the Wounded Warrior House in Orleans County from Wednesday through Sunday this week.

OIS as it’s called by volunteers, began its presence in the Batavia area around six years ago when veteran Edward Spence got together with several other vets in the area, one of which was Floyd “Skip” Hulburt.

“Ed Spence and I and a fellow veteran, we had talked about establishing OIS in New York, and once it was established Ed Spence just took off with it.”

Skip had just gotten back from another successful hunt but his focus was on a fellow soldier, “My main focus was Jack who is a Vietnam veteran. This is his first time waterfowl hunting so I wanted to get him into it and see how he likes it, and that's a lot of why I do this. I'm not as bad (off) as some of these guys. I'm pretty mobile still.”

Jack Olson, a Vietnam vet, lives just down the road from the Warrior House and was very grateful for the opportunity.

Olson said “I had a good time, I enjoyed it.  Great people, great guides, great veterans I was with.  All good, all good, nothing bad I can say.”

Olson. like many veterans. is not just receiving help but is providing for others like himself.

“I think more people should get involved in veterans organizations and volunteering at the Batavia VA," Olson said. "I am myself a volunteer at the VA and it's a very rewarding experience and there's always stuff to do. Somebody will find something for you to do at the VA.”

For more information on Operation Injured Soldiers, you can visit www.injuredsoldiers.org or message Edward Spence on Facebook.

September 23, 2016 - 1:47pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, Batavia Downs, harness racing.

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

When racing resumes at Batavia Downs tonight (Sept. 23), the early Pick-5 pool will be guaranteed at $2,500. The early Pick-5 wager runs from race one through race five and is a 50-cent base wager.

America’s oldest lighted harness racetrack currently races every Wednesday, Friday and Saturday night with post time for the first race set at 6:15. The 2016 season continues through Dec. 10.

 
September 22, 2016 - 4:14pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, Pavilion, Le Roy, Basom.

Press release:

About 150 students have joined RIT's fall sports teams, including men's and women's soccer, men's and women's tennis, men's and women's cross-country and women's volleyball.

They include these local students:

Dakota Kegler, of Pavilion, who is studying Mechanical Engineering Technology, is on the men's soccer team.

Montana Vescovi, of Le Roy, who is studying Nutrition Management, is on the volleyball team.

Jennifer Crossen, of Basom, who is studying Chemical Engineering, is on the women's cross-country team.

Becca Schwan, of Le Roy, who is undecided on a major, is on the women's cross-country team.

Rochester Institute of Technology is home to leading creators, entrepreneurs, innovators and researchers. Founded in 1829, RIT enrolls about 19,000 students in more than 200 career-oriented and professional programs, making it among the largest private universities in the United States.

September 22, 2016 - 3:41pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, Batavia Downs, harness racing.
(Photo of Susie's Delight with driver Ray Fisher Jr.)
 
By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs
 
Susie's Delight proved patience is a virtue as she laid in wait before pouncing on her foes in the $9,500 mares Open pacing feature at Batavia Downs on Wednesday night (Sept. 21).
 
Kaitlyn Akeeper (Jim Morrill Jr.) set the pace as the heavy post time favorite All Charged Up (John Macdonald) couldn't get the front and didn't find a hole. That was the start of a long journey for her as she was parked the rest of the way. So with Memumsnotnice (Kevin Cummings) sitting second and All Charged Up hung out like laundry, Kaitlyn Akeeper cut fractions of :27.1, :56.3 and 1:25.2.
 
At three-quarters, All Charged Up was making her way to the rear and that freed Susie's Delight (Ray Fisher Jr.) from her encumbered position in fourth and she began a run up to the leader. Coming out of the turn, Susie's Delight drew even with Kaitlyn Akeeper and the mares battled into the stretch. Fisher began bouncing in the bike like he was sitting on a trampoline, urging his mare ahead. And ahead she forged to a half-length victory in 1:54.2. 
 
It was the fourth win of the year for the 6-year-old daughter of Bettor's Delight ($13) and the time of 1:54.2 was a new seasonal mark for the winner. Susie's Delight is owned by the Swift Racing Stable and trained by Ryan Swift. 
 
Drew Monti, Dave McNeight III and Ray Fisher Jr. all scored driving triples on the night while John Mungillo, Bradley Jackson and Dave McNeight Jr. conditioned two winners apiece. 
 
Racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Friday night (Sept. 23) with post time for the first race set at 6:15.
September 20, 2016 - 4:38pm
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, BHS, sports, news, Blue Devil Athletic Hall of Fame.

The inductees into the 15th annual Batavia Blue Devil Athletic Hall of Fame were announced this afternoon.

They are:

  • David Dedman (1989)
  • Karen Thomas Dupuis (1982)
  • Christopher Kane (1986)
  • John McGowan Jr. (1995)
  • Frank Pontillo (1991)
  • Susan Salvador Tresco (1986)

Biographical information about the honorees has not yet been released.

They will be honored at Terry Hills Restaurant and Banquet Facility in Batavia on Saturday, Oct. 22.

Cost is $30 per person. Social hour begins at 5; dinner is at 6.

Tickets are available at the Athletic Directors Office at Batavia High School.

For more information, call 343-2480, ext. 2003.

This event is sponsored by the Batavia Coaches Association.

September 20, 2016 - 6:10am

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Batavia varsity Lady Devils Volleyball Team played last night in their annual matchup at home versus the Notre Dame Fighting Irish and won 3 sets to 1. Batavia’s first set came out on top, winning 25 to 16, led by freshman Courtnee Yasses serving one ace and servicing numerous times. Senior Courtney Burns added five kills.

In the second set, Batavia continued to start strong going on a 10-2 run, Notre Dame called time-out. They changed their game up a little and then slowly chipped away Batavia’s lead, which eventually tied the game at 18. Batavia called time-out to regroup but Notre Dame won the set 25-21. Thea Bochicchio and Julia Streeter added combined four kills. Natalie Thorton had seven digs.

Third set, Notre Dame continued the momentum to lead by a few points 10-7, then Batavia’s Courtney Burns served an ace and Batavia called time-out. Notre Dame increased their lead to eight points until Batavia regained the serve and Courtnee Yasses started to serve. The freshman continued to win points for Batavia to tie the set 19-19, Notre Dame called time-out.

Both teams exchanged the lead until the end where Batavia won by two points 25-23 to lead two games to one after three. Batavia Junior Taylor Stefaniak had six digs and Senior Maria Canzoneri had three aces and four digs.

Fourth quarter, Batavia jumped on a lead of 16-3 then Notre Dame called time-out. The Irish made some errors that let the set slip away; Batavia won 25-10, to win the match three to one. Batavia’s Stefaniak sisters each had three kills and senior Maria Canzoneri added three aces.

For more photos and to purchase prints click here.

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September 19, 2016 - 10:01am
posted by Howard B. Owens in football, sports, Le Roy, news.

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Special teams play put Le Roy on the road to victory with two quick scores in the first quarter in a game that was unique in a couple of ways.

First, it was a home game played on the road. Second, it was played on a Sunday.

Regardless of the strange circumstances, the Le Roy team displayed vintage Oatkan Knights' dominance as it cruised to a 52-7 victory over Wellsville.

The game was played in Perry because Le Roy's home field won't be ready for players and fans after a major upgrade until this coming Friday's homecoming game, and the game was delayed until Sunday because of a massive thunderstorm that passed through Wyoming County right at game time Saturday night.

The game started early, about 10 minutes before the scheduled 3 p.m. time, and Le Roy scored before the official kickoff time when Jason Doemling scampered 39 yards on a punt return.

Later in the first quarter, Le Roy scored its second touchdown, to take a 14-0 lead, when Josh Laurie blocked a field goal attempt and returned it 75 yards.

Wellsville never again mounted a serious offensive challenge, until the team scored late in the fourth quarter when the game was already out of reach.

Laurie had quite the game. Besides the blocked field goal, he had two interceptions. He rushed for 96 yards on seven carries and scored two TDs in the process. He also was 7-13 passing for 148 yards and a TD.

Nate Flint also had an impact, going 85 yards on 11 carries with a TD. Dom Filio carried the ball nine times for 54 yards and two TDs. Luke Stella added 61 yards on six rushes.

Pass catchers included Reece Tresco, two for 87 yards, Filio, three for 34 yards and a TD, and Ryan Boyce, two for 27 yards.

Luke Hogle had five tackles and a sack, Canyon Roster, five tackles and Cole Biggins, five tackles.

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To purchase prints, click here.

September 18, 2016 - 2:17pm
posted by Billie Owens in harness racing, sports, Batavia Downs.

(Photo of China Dream.)

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

Track conditions were sloppy at best after torrential downpours swept through Genesee County, but China Dream didn’t seem to mind the mud as he came first-over and put in a gutsy effort while winning the $10,000 Open pacing feature at Batavia Downs on Saturday night (Sept. 17).

From the pylons, Heaven Rocks (Kevin Cummings) took the lead by default as no one else in the field left. From there Cummings proceeded to cut pedestrian fractions for the class of :29.1 to the quarter and :59.1 to the half with his competitors following in post position order. 

Shortly past that station, China Dream (Shawn Gray) pulled first-up and drew alongside Heaven Rocks. The two matched strides up the backside and around the last turn. At the head of the lane, China Dream wore down Heaven Rocks, but met another challenge from Foreign Officer (John Cummings Jr.) who had tipped three wide and was driving. But China Dream was the better horse this night and held all comers at bay to win by length in 1:56.2.

It was the ninth win of the year for China Dream ($10.80) and it raised his annual income to $65,055 for owners Jack and Maria Rice. China Dream is trained by Maria Rice.

Shawn Gray posted four driving victories on the night while Ray Fisher Jr. won two. Trainers Maria Rice, Angelo Nappo and Richard Lareau all sent two winners postward.

Racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Monday afternoon at 4:30 for the final twilight card of the year.

September 17, 2016 - 3:37pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Godfrey's Pond, Stafford, outdoors, sports.

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The folks at Godfrey's Pond hosted an open house today, called Hunting and Fishing Days.

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September 17, 2016 - 3:19pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Genesee ARC, elba, sports, 5K, news.

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Eric Boyce had the best time for the men.

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Kim Mills had the best time for the women (she also had the best women's time in the GLOW Corporate Cup).

September 17, 2016 - 12:33pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, sports, harness racing.

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

The last time BZ Glide visited the winner’s circle was on May 27 of this year, but that absence was quelled when he got up late to win the $10,000 Open trotting feature at Batavia Downs on Friday night (Sept. 16).

As the race got underway, habitual leaver Kahoku (Kevin Cummings) took a stay-at-home approach and let Studio City (Dave McNeight III), Noble Legend (Jack Flanigen) and Serendipitious (Ray Fisher Jr.) all go for the top. Those three battled three-wide to the quarter in :27.4 before Noble Legend finally cleared and then Serendipitious overtook from him. But the action was far from over before they reached the half as Studio City pulled first over with Kahoku shadowing the move.

The field was in two rows at three-quarters in 1:27.3 when Cummings pulled Kahoku three-high around the far turn. Not to be outdone, Mike Caprio pulled BZ Glide from the back of the pack and swung four-wide at the head of the lane. With horses coming from everywhere, four had a shot in mid-stretch. But it was BZ Glide who brushed the best to win by a neck in 1:58.1.

It was the second win of the year for BZ Glide ($4.30) who is just rounding into form after being off two months over the summer. So far in 2016, he has earned $18,625 for owner Caprio Stable LLC. BZ Glide is trained by Alana Caprio.

The Downs leading driver, Kevin Cummings and Drew Monti both had triples on the card while Mike Caprio checked in with two winners.

Racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Saturday night (Sept. 17) with the first post set at 6:15.

September 17, 2016 - 9:39am
posted by Howard B. Owens in sports, football, Notre Dame, pembroke, news.

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Through three quarters of football, Pembroke battled Notre Dame to a draw, but when Jake Weatherwax dashed into the end zone from six yards out with five minutes left in the game, the Dragons were unable to answer and fell to 1-2 on the season, 34-27.

It was Notre Dame's first win of the season.

The Dragons and Irish were pretty evenly matched throughout the contest, with each team averaging 5.8 yards per play on offense and only being a minute apart on time of possession for the game.

Weatherwax finished with 187 yards rushing on 29 attempts (he scored four times) and Pembroke's Zach von Kramer had 187 yards on the ground on 27 attempts, and he had two TDs. 

Pembroke's Reid Miano had 13 completions on 29 attempts for 209 yards and two TDs.

Notre Dame's Brendan Klotzbach was 8-19 in the air for 126 yards. He was intercepted once.

"Pembroke’s a great team," said Notre Dame Head Coach Rick Mancuso. "They’re very well coached and they have a couple of great athletes on that team. We knew we would have our hands full. Their quarterback threw the ball fantastic and Von Kramer is just a phenomenal running back. We had our hands full. There’s no doubt."

Von Kramer also caught a TD pass and gained 74 yards on three receptions.

Mancuso thought it was a great win for his team, which struggled a bit through the first two games of the season.

"I think we're getting better each week," Mancuso said. "We're not there yet, obviously, but I think the kids had a great week of practice."

Mancuso was impressed with the game Weatherwax had.

"Jake did a fantastic job," Mancuso said. "He's a gritty, hard runner. He makes great cuts. He reads the blocks. I thought he did a terrific job."

Defensively, Notre Dame played tough, but the team still has some holes to plug.

"Defensively, we brought it," Mancuso said. "We really worked hard this week on staying diligent to our plan and working hard and I thought the kids stuck with it. I thought they did a very nice job of executing."

Caleb Wolcott had 10 tackles and a sack. Brad Misiak had 10 tackles.

"We’ve got a lot to work on," Mancuso said. "I mean, they put up 27 points. I’m not ecstatic about that, but those are things we need to clean up and each week we’ll get better."

For the Dragons on defense, von Kramer had 12 tackles.

Four Notre Dame receivers had two catches each -- Ryan Moffatt, Nico Zambito, Misiak and Jordon Weatherwax. Moffatt gained 45 yards and Zambito gained 42.

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To purchase prints, click here.

September 17, 2016 - 9:27am

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U-Prep and Batavia kept everyone on their toes in a hard-fought game where mistakes were made on both sides last night at Salen's Stadium in Rocheter. Pictured above is Ray Leach for Batavia, catching a pass from quarterback Jerry Reinhart to win the game with 0:07 seconds left on the clock 30-26.

Highlights of the game: First quarter – Terrance Bethel Touchdown scored early 4:25, missed two point conversion, giving U-Prep a 6-0 lead. Batavia and U-Prep exchanged the ball until Batavia recovered a fumble.  

Second quarter -- Batavia scores midway to tie it 6-6. U-Prep carried the ball and converted on a fourth down to score at 7:52 and lead 12-6. Batavia's Eric Davis goes out on a leg injury. Near the end Jerry Reinhart passed a 38-yard touchdown pass to Chandler Baker, two-point conversion is good. Batavia leads 14-12.

John Garlock recovers an onside kick, which Ray Leach scored for Batavia and led at halftime 22-12.

Second half -- Jonathan Williams touchdown for U-Prep at 6:17 thrown by Amari Masse; two-point conversion is good. Batavia's lead is cut to only two points, 22-20. 

U-Prep runs 45 yards to Batavia 10-yard line at 7:36, batavia and U-Prep exchanged a fumble and interception. U-Prep scores late in the fourth to lead 26-22 with 2:52 left.

Batavia dominated on driving down the field with 7 sconds left on a pass caught by Ray Leach. Batavia wins 30-26​.

Batavia moves to a 3-0; U-Prep moves to a 2-1 record.

To view photos and purchase prints click here.

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September 16, 2016 - 3:03pm

Press release:

YWCA of Genesee County has decided to step things up with its annual Domestic Violence Awareness Walk by offering a USATF (Track & Field) certified 5K for runners and walkers alike.

Described as a mostly flat and fast course, this race will also include family activities, Limited Edition purple baseball caps, a few words from Notre Dame High School Principal Wade Bianco and a purple powder finish line celebration. Bianco recently earned an honored spot in the Coaches category for the Section V Football Hall of Fame.

The event is set to begin at 5:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 6, at YWCA, 301 North St.

“We don’t ever want to lose sight of why we started the walk in the first place: to honor victims and survivors of domestic violence,” Executive Director Jeanne Walton said. “But we are also aware that people love 5Ks! Three miles is just far enough for serious runners to feel competitive and not too far for walkers to enjoy as well. We strongly encourage people of all ages to wear some purple and help us to highlight Domestic Violence Awareness Month.”

A professional timing company will be on site with an inflatable arch and results will be available to participants during and after the event. Prizes will go to overall fastest male and female finishers and to the top two male and female finishers in each age category: 19 and under; 20-29; 30-39; 40-49; 50-59; 60-69 and 70-plus.

Perhaps the most notable aspect will be the haze of purple powder as participants engage in friendly interaction of tossing the clothing-safe powder on one another and in the air. Purple is the signature color of domestic violence awareness and will play a key role in coloring the day, organizers said.

For those that may work up an appetite, the YW’s traditional Harvest Supper will also be served that day from 4 to 7:30 p.m. Takeouts will be available. The supper is a way to highlight the area’s agricultural industry with hearty soups, stew, crusty breads, fresh fruit desserts and many other items that highlight ingredients provided by local farms and ag producers.

Cost is $25 for the 5K, $8 for the supper, or $30 for both events. Kids 10 and under may walk for free and Limited Edition 5K baseball caps will go to the first 150 paid registrants. For more information, go to https://results.score-this.com/RegisterThis.php?raceid=20161006STIL or call (585) 343-5808.

September 16, 2016 - 2:29pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, harness racing, Batavia Downs.

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs 

Batavia, NY---The draw for Wednesday (Sept. 21) which was originally scheduled for today (Sept. 16) has been postponed until Saturday morning (Sept. 17).

The box remains open for all classes until tomorrow at 9 a.m. and if you have already entered, you do not need to re-enter.

If you have any questions, please contact the race office at 585-344-6161.

September 16, 2016 - 7:50am
posted by Howard B. Owens in football, sports, alexander.

In a rare Thursday night game, the Alexander Trojans moved to 3-0 on the season, defeating Holley 41-14.

Job Smith gained 107 yards on only four carries for the Trojans. Derrick Busch had three receptions for 103 yards and Dustin Schmeider caught two passes for 71 yards. Sharing the point-after duties, Grant Cox kicked three through and Hannah Paolucci hit two attempts. On defense, Schmeider had five tackles and eight assists.

TDs were scored by Chris McClinic, Busch, P.J. Brennan, Smith, twice, and Mitchell Gordon.

Tonight:

  • Batavia plays University Prep at Sahlen Stadium. Game time is 7 p.m.
  • Oakfield-Alabama/Elba hosts Akron, 7 p.m., at Oakfield
  • Notre Dame travels to Pembroke to meet the Dragons at 7:30 p.m.
  • Cal-Mum/Byron-Bergen is at home against Dansville, 7:30 p.m.
  • York/Pavilion hosts Bolivar-Richburg in York, 7:30 p.m.

Tomorrow, Le Roy is the home team against Wellsville, but the game is being played in Perry at 7:30 p.m.

September 15, 2016 - 12:20pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, Batavia Downs, harness racing.

(Zack’s Zoomer with driver Marcus Miller.)

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

The 2-year-old trotting colts and geldings who came to Batavia Downs on Wednesday night (Sept. 14) to compete in the $107,000 New York Sires Stakes (NYSS) put on quite a show, but none more than Zack’s Zoomer, who set a new track record for age, gender and gait.

Zack’s Zoomer (Deweycheatumnhowe-Passageway) had finished second to division leaders Devious Man and Money Macintosh racing from off the pace his last two starts, but tonight driver Marcus Miller took no prisoners and sent Zack’s Zoomer right to the front along with Neon Lights (Chris Lems) and Money Macintosh (Andy Miller) in the first $53,500 division. As they headed into the first turn, favorite Money Macintosh made a break and left Zack’s Zoomer to dictate the fractions with Neon Lights parked out right next to him.

The two colts continued to battle; one in, one out, through fractions of :29, :58.2 and 1:28.4 before Neon Lights tired and Zack’s Zoomer found additional momentum. Rounding the final turn, Marcus Miller was just line driving his horse as they sped away and opened up a three length lead by mid-stretch. At the wire, Zack’s Zoomer was a wrapped-up winner in 1:58.1 by a comfortable two-lengths.  

The time of 1:58.1 was a new lifetime mark for Zack’s Zoomer ($5.40) as well as a new track record for 2-year-old trotting colts at Batavia Downs. The old record of 1:58.4 was set by Dejarmbro in 2010.

“He has been drawing poorly, but he’s just been getting better and better. So when he got the rail, this is pretty much what I had planned tonight” said Marcus Miller. “I think he’s a very nice horse.”

This was also the second track record Marcus Miller has set at Batavia Downs in just over a week. On Saturday (Sept. 3), Miller drove Pointomygranson to a five-length, 1:53.2 win to set a new standard for 2-year-old pacing geldings.

This win was the second in six starts for Zack’s Zoomer and it pushed his earnings for the year to $71,265. The 50 points earned for the win, moved him up to fifth in the NYSS standings (155) and solidified his spot in the $1.8 million Night of Champions at Yonkers Raceway on Saturday (Sept. 24). 

Zack’s Zoomer is owned by Ervin Miller Stable Inc. and Harvey Elsman and is trained by Erv Miller.

In the first $53,500 split, Devious Man (Credit Winner-Miss Garland) displayed why he was sent off 2-5 as he overpowered the field from post six.

Stick With Me Kid (Chris Lems), Volare (Mark Macdonald) and Devious Man (Andy Miller) all left the gate. Volare tucked in second behind the front running Stick With Me Kid while Devious Man floated in fourth. Just past the eighth pole, Stick With Me Kid made a break and simultaneously, Devious Man pulled and proceeded towards the front. That march was completed by the top of the far turn and from there, he took total control.

(Devious Man with driver Andy Miller.)

Devious Man led the field to the half in 1:01.1 and then proceeded to close out the race. He opened up and immediate three-length lead and with Miller sitting chilly, hit the three-quarters in 1:31 before trotting home in :28.4 to be a gapped winner in 1:59.4.

“I was a little worried about the six hole, but he just cruised around there; it didn’t really seem to matter,” Andy Miller said. “After that horse made a break and he cleared the front, he was pretty much on his own from there.”

It was the fifth win of the year for Devious Man ($2.90) and the fourth in a row during his current streak. The purse enhanced his coffers to $167,733, making him the richest 2-year-old trotting colt in the NYSS this year. The 50 points gained for the win also made him the highest point-earner (287) for his category.

Devious Man, who is a three-quarter brother to 2005 Hambletonian winner Vivid Photo, is owned by Story Inc. and is trained by Julie Miller.

There were also three divisions of the $15,000 Excelsior A series on the card.

The first $15,000 division was won by American Cheque (Conway Hall-Cheque Lavec) who was driven by John Campbell in 2:00.3. American Cheque ($3.30) is trained by Linda Toscano for owner Michael Keeling.

The second $15,000 leg went to Top Flight Angel (Archangel-Top Photo) who was driven by John Cummings Jr. in 1:58.4. Top Flight Angel ($8.60) is trained by Megan Wilson for Legendary Standardbred Farm.

The final $15,000 split was won by Barn Winner (Credit Winner-Hallmarker) who was driven by Jim Morrill Jr. Barn Winner ($4.50) is trained by Steve Pratt who also owns him along with Nancy Pratt and the Out In The Country Stable.

Several horsemen had outstanding performances on Wednesday. John Cummings Jr. scored a driving triple while John Campbell, Marcus Miller and Jim Morrill Jr. all had doubles. Trainers Erv Miller and Jim Graham each sent two horses to the winner’s enclosure for portraits.

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