Shaker star to play in lacrosse classic

Shaker High School All-Amer­ican Kat Thomas has been invited to compete for the North team at the Un

Shaker High School All-Amer­ican Kat Thomas has been invited to compete for the North team at the Under Armour Lacrosse Classic July 12 at Towson University’s Johnny Unitas Stadium.

Thomas will be the second Shaker athlete to compete in the North-South All-America showcase, following Abigail Rehfuss in 2007. Halley Quillinan represented Bethlehem at the all-star game in 2006.

The 44 Under Armour All-Americans were chosen by a panel from Inside Lacrosse magazine, and 13 players on the North team are from New York. The North will be

under the direction of West Genesee coach Bob Elmer.

A tall and athletic Duke-bound midfielder, Thomas led Shaker to its second straight Section II Class A championship game and a 16-5 overall record this spring. She scored 63 goals and 28 assists for the Blue Bison after collecting 45 goals and 23 assists as a junior.

“She deserves all of the honors she’s getting,” Shaker coach Leslie Carroll said of the five-year varsity starter. “She’s always been such a hard worker. She’s the kind of kid who, after practice is over, will go out and shoot around on her own, and try new things. She’s always looking to improve her game.”

Thomas was Shaker’s first player selected to the US Lacrosse women’s division high school All-America team as a junior, and gained the prestigious honor again this season. She reached season highs with eight goals and nine points in a 23-13 win over Columbia, and in Shaker’s 18-10 Section II title-game loss to Guilderland, had two goals and five points.

“She’s not only a great lacrosse player, she’s a great person. She has a great head on her shoulders,” Carroll said. “Academically, she does a great job. She puts 100 percent into everything she does.”

Thomas, who also excels in soccer and ice hockey, was recently named Shaker’s top female athlete for the 2007-08 school year.

Joining Thomas on the US

Lacrosse women’s division high school All-America team are goalkeeper Karlee Blank and defender Beth Halayko of state Class B semifinalist Niskayuna, midfielder Kat Sutton of Saratoga Springs and midfielder Alexa Smead of Holy Names. Smead scored a Section

II-leading 108 goals this spring, which included two nine-goal games and five eight-goal efforts.

Honorable mention All-America status went to Abbey Fashouer and Danielle Tetreault of state Class A semifinalist Guilderland, Meg O’Donnell of Bethlehem, Libby Schultz of Emma Willard and

Nicole Borisenok of Section II Class C champion Albany Academy for Girls.

record setter

Lacrosse standout Sara Bonacquist has been named Schenectady’s most valuable player after setting school single-season records with 64 goals, 17 assists and 81 points.

The junior midfielder set school single-game records with 11 goals and 12 points in a game with Emma Willard. Bonacquist also had two games with seven goals and another with six goals.

state rankings

The Niskayuna boys’ lacrosse team (22-1) finished at No. 7 on the final set of state Class A rankings put out by the New York State Sportswriters Association. Niskayuna slipped two spots

after its 9-6 state quarterfinal loss to Yorktown.

The girls’ teams from Guilderland (22-1) and Shaker (16-5) finished at No. 5 and No. 17, respectively, in the Class A rankings. The Niskayuna girls (15-6) are No. 12 in Class B.

The top-ranked boys’ teams are West Genesee (Section III, 21-3, Class A), Rocky Point (Section XI, 21-1, Class B) and Mount Sinai (Section XI, 18-3, Class C). The top-ranked girls’ teams are West Genesee (Section III, 24-0, Class A), Garden City (Section VIII,

21-1, Class B) and Shoreham-Wading River (Section XI, 20-1, Class C). Those six teams won state titles last weekend.

lewis to pittsburgh

Former Albany Academy running back Dion Lewis made a verbal commitment last week to play football for the University of Pittsburgh and head coach Dave Wannstedt.

“I’m really excited about it,” said Lewis, who will be heading to Pittsburgh in January for the spring semester after finishing his final half-year at Blair Academy in New Jersey. “This is something I’ve dreamed about my whole life. I’m going to keep working hard, and make something out of it.”

Lewis helped Albany Academy reach the state Class B championship game in 2006 before moving on to Blair Academy, where last season he rushed for 979 yards (12.3 average) and 14 touchdowns. The 5-foot-7, 185-pounder also caught two touchdown passes, returned a kickoff for a touchdown and intercepted five passes for his 8-1 team.

Tulane, Miami of Ohio and Pittsburgh offered athletic scholarships to Lewis, a 17-year-old Albany

native who, according to the Scouts.Inc. Web site, is “A good [college] prospect. He could become a good starter at the Division I level.”

“When I visited the school [on June 13], I got a real good vibe from coach Wannstedt and the whole staff,” Lewis said. “I knew it was

going to happen. I knew they wanted me to come there. They told me so that day, and offered me a scholarship.”

Lewis’ rushed for 1,368 yards and 25 touchdowns during the 2006 season as Albany Academy went 12-1. He scored the lone touchdown in the Cadets’ 33-7 state title-game loss to Geneva. Lewis was selected to the all-state Class B second team that year.

Pittsburgh went 5-7 in 2007, which included a season-ending 13-9 upset of then-No. 2-ranked West Virginia.

“They’ve got a great running back right now who’s supposed to get drafted pretty high, and they’ve got another senior,” Lewis said. “I’m going to go in there and compete for time.”

cutspec no. 1

With a home run and double against Brushton-Moira in a state Class C quarterfinal game last week, Fort Plain senior Adam Cutspec moved to the top of the career hits list for New York State Public High School Athletic Association baseball players.

Cutspec’s homer and double in the 11-1 win gave him 186 hits, one more than Mickey Collins delivered for S.S. Seward (2002-06). Cutspec added a triple and single in the Hilltoppers’ 4-1 state semifinal loss to Thomas Edison, pushing his five-year hit total to 188 according to Fort Plain statistics.

Cutspec’s 50 career doubles are tied for first among NYSPHSAA players, with Matt O’Rourke of Saratoga Catholic (2001-05) also hitting 50. Cutspec’s 174 career runs scored are second among NYSPHSAA players.

The University at Albany-bound Cutspec is also Fort Plain’s career record holder for RBI (99), stolen bases (47), triples (17), on base percentage (.558) and slugging percentage (.866).

rodeo champion

Schalmont junior Eric Fabian was recently named the Wrangler team roping champion at the New York State/Provincial High School Finals Rodeo held at the Double M Arena in Ballston Spa.

He was additionally awarded a $300 college scholarship from Ariat Boot Company for being named the New York State High School Rodeo Association student president for 2008-09.

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