Jim Kramer, who led Schenectady to one of its finest football seasons, has been selected the Section II Class AA Coach of the Year.
Schenectady went 6-3 to match the school’s second-highest total for wins in a year. Kramer’s first Schenectady team also went 6-3 in 2009, while the Pats’ Super Bowl team put together an 8-2 mark the year before.
“There were some great candidates. There are some great coaches in the area,” said Kramer. “To be selected by my peers is a great honor, a humbling honor.”
Schenectady won its final three regular-season games to make the playoffs for the fourth time under Kramer, and beat Christian Brothers Academy in the Section II quarterfinals, 28-27, for its signature victory. Schenectady later lost to eventual area champion Shaker in the semifinals, 28-21.
Schenectady also lost to Shaker by a touchdown and lost to Columbia by one point in the regular season. The Pats beat Ballston Spa, Colonie, Troy, LaSalle and Niskayuna to go with the win over CBA.
“I consider this to be a program award,” said Kramer. “The players and my assistant are a big part of this.”
Schenectady senior quarterback Kwami Jarvis was named the Class AA Liberty Division Offensive Player of the Year and the Daily Gazette All-Area Offensive Player of the Year.
The Schenectady football family lost one of its own just over a week ago with the passing of former Linton High School coach Gerry Baker.
Baker is often remembered as the man who guided Linton to a win over Mont Pleasant in the final game of the storied rivalry between the schools in 1985, though his career also included great success beforehand with the Blue Devils, Gloversville and Rome Free Academy.
Baker coached Linton football for 13 seasons in three different stints beginning in 1966. He guided Linton to its only undefeated season that first year, and the 6-0-1 Blue Devils shared the Class A League title with Mont Pleasant. Linton, with its single-wing offense and 4-5 defense, logged 6-2 records the next two years.
Baker’s final game at Linton was a 33-0 triumph over Mont Pleasant in 1985, and marked the Blue Devils’ most lopsided victory in the series between the Schenectady rivals. Linton held Mont Pleasant to less than 100 yards of offense that November day, and Jim Poirier threw a pair of touchdown passes to Vinnie Pedone to highlight the win.
Baker had a six-season run coaching at Gloversville, his alma mater, and led the Huskies to undefeated seasons in 1958 (6-0) and 1962 (8-0). His 1964-65 Rome Free teams were a combined 15-0-1.
Baker spent time as an assistant coach at Union College and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, and was a successful track and wrestling coach at Linton. The Korean War veteran who attended both Springfield College and Ithaca College ended his 35-year career as a physical education instructor in 1986.
Scotties end drought
The Ballston Spa boys’ basketball team defeated Shenendehowa for the first time as a member of the Suburban Council Friday night, 66-61.
The Scotties had dropped 14 straight games to the Plainsmen, including regular-season and league tournament games, going back to the 2004-05 season. Ballston Spa was previously a member of the Foothills Council.
The contest saw the teams combine for 23 three-point baskets, with Ballston Spa connecting on 12. George Kernochann made five threes for all of his 15 points, while Jeremy Mendrick had a team-high 22 points, and Andre Edgerton netted 17. Clifford Stevens clinched the win with a pair of free throws in the final seconds.
Shenendehowa beat Ballston Spa last season, 66-47 and 79-34, to extend the streak that started with a 54-49 and 73-58 triumphs in 2004.
Gordon swim standout
Ryan Gordon of the host Plainsmen logged three wins to lead all local swimmers at the Shenendehowa Holiday Invitational Saturday.
Gordon placed first in the 100 free (47.07) and 100 back (52.00). The junior also joined with his brother, Luke, Eric Tsui and Mike Conley for a triumph in the 200 medley relay (1:38.46).
Nick Wilkinson of Glens Falls won the 100 fly (53.67), and Niko Brosnihan of LaSalle won the 50 free (22.08).
Pittsford (459.5) captured the team title, and Shenendehowa (354.5) was second.
Cross country stars
Taylor Driscoll of Saratoga Springs has been selected the Senior Runner of the Year by the New York State Sportswriters Association.
Driscoll (Class A) leads Section II’s all-state first-team group that also includes Kaylee Scott of Holy Names (Class B), the Greenwich tandem of Madeline Montague and Tori Spiezio as well as Courtney Tedeschi of Berne-Knox-Westerlo (Class D).
Driscoll followed up her Suburban Council and Section II individual titles with a fourth at the state meet, thirds at the Federation race and Nike Cross National qualifier and a ninth at the national event.
Scott’s sophomore season included a runner-up effort to teammate Catherine Maloy at the sectionals and a fourth at the state meet. Maloy and Holy Names seventh-grader Lydia Williams made the all-state second team, and Williams was tabbed the state’s seventh/eighth-grader of the year.
Montague, Spiezio and Tedeschi were 1-2-3 at the sectionals, and Montague placed first at the state meet, with Spiezio second.
Maryanna Lansing of Shaker (Class A) and Jamie Kasza of Fonda-Fultonville (Class C) made all-state second teams.
Taylor Driscoll, 12, Saratoga Springs (first team); Maryanna Lansing, 9, Shaker (second); Keelin Hollowood, 12, Saratoga Springs (third); Olivia Morrow, 9, Saratoga Springs (third); Caroline Hampton, 12, Shenendehowa (fourth); Felicia Sciortino, 12, Niskayuna (fourth)Bellame Bower, 9, Colonie (fifth); Julia Zachgo, 9, Shenendehowa (fifth); Sarah Morin, 11, Saratoga Springs (sixth); Emily Burns, 10, Guilderland (HM); Spencer Hayes, 10, Saratoga Springs (HM); Audrey Martino, 9, Shaker (HM).
Kaylee Scott, 10, Holy Names (first); Catherine Maloy, 12, Holy Names (second); Lydia Williams, 7m Holy Names (second); Lindsay Bachus, 9, Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake (third); Emily Digman, 9, Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake (third); Estela Smith, 10, Holy Names (fourth); Leah Triller, 11, Holy Names (fourth); Jordan Casey, 10, Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake (fifth); Jacqueline Willsey, 12, Holy Names (fifth); Meagan Roecker, 12, Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake (sixth); Sherri Metcalf, 9, Queensbury (HM); Tyra Wynn, 9, Queensbury (HM).
Jamie Kasza, 9, Fonda-Fultonville (second); Victoria Hathaway, 12, Stillwater (third); Kelly Pasko, 12, Maple Hill (fourth); Ashley Watson, 8, Schuylerville (fourth); Erin Clark, 9, Chatham (HM).
Madeline Montague, 12, Greenwich (first), Tori Spiezio, 9, Greenwich (first); Courtney Tedeschi, 12, Berne-Knox-Westerlo (first); Sarah Lapham, 11, Greenwich (third).
Pittsford Sutherland junior Luisa Schirmer has been named the Gatorade New York State Player of the Year for girls’ volleyball.
The 6-foot-1 outside hitter finished the season with 588 kills, 489 digs, 114 service aces and 71 blocks. She led Pittsford Sutherland to the state Class A final where Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake prevailed.