Samantha Vetter of Saratoga Springs has been selected the girls’ cross country 7th/8th-Grader of the Year by the New York State Sportswriters Association.
Vetter and fellow fourth-team Class A all-state pick Danielle Jordan of Shenendehowa are among 25 Section II athletes who were honored by the association.
Vetter was best among all eighth-graders at the state Class A meet and the Federation event that followed, placing 19th and 28th, respectively. She won at the Suburban Council title and took second at the Section II meet.
Jordan, a sophomore, placed fourth at the Suburban Council meet and third in Section II before finishing 39th at the state level.
Schalmont sophomore Julia Flower was tabbed a Class C third-team all-star after a stellar debut season of cross country running. The former swimmer placed second at the Colonial Council meet, captured the Section II crown and later took 17th at the state meet. One of her regular season victories came at the Grout Run at Central Park in Schenectady.
Section II and state champion Tori Spiezio of Greenwich made the Class D first team for the second year in a row. Kaylee Scott of Holy Names, who won the Colonial Council meet, was third in Section II and fifth in the state, made the Class B second team.
Also landing class runner of the year awards were Katie Lembo of Penfield (senior), Annika Avery of Fayetteville-Manlius (junior), Megan Reilly of Warwick (sophomore) and Jessica Lawson of Corning (freshman). Lawson was picked as the Overall Runner of the Year after winning the state Class B and Federation titles.
Danielle Jordan, Shenendehowa, 10 (fourth team); Samantha Vetter, Saratoga Springs, 8 (fourth); Emily Burns, Guilderland, 11 (fifth); Spencer Hayes, Saratoga Springs, 11 (fifth); Bellame Bower, Colonie, 10 (honorable mention); Peyton Engborg, Saratoga Springs, 8 (hm); Maryanna Lansing, Shaker, 10 (hm); Sarah Morin, Saratoga Springs, 12 (hm); Jenna Robinson, Guilderland, 12 (hm); Estela Smith, Saratoga Springs, 11 (hm); Kathryn Tenney, Colonie, 7 (hm); Carly Vetter, Saratoga Springs, 8 (hm).
Kaylee Scott, Holy Names, 11 (second); Emily Guinther, Queensbury, 11 (third); Megan Kellogg, Queensbury, 12 (fourth); Danielle Soprano, Queensbury, 8 (fifth); Emily Digman, Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake, 10 (sixth); Sherri Metcalfe, Queensbury, 10 (sixth); Courtney Breiner, Emma Willard, 11 (hm).
Julia Flower, Schalmont, 10 (third); Alexandra Bartolotta, Hudson, 10 (fourth); Ashley Watson, Schuylerville, 9 (fourth).
Tori Spiezio, Greenwich, 10 (first); Sarah Lapham, Greenwich, 12 (second); Monica Strain, Maple Hill, 9 (hm).
Record for Nails
With two free throws in the final seconds, Columbia junior Jahlil Nails set a school scoring record with 44 points in an 81-78 loss to Schenectady last Friday night at the Arthur Hilliard Memorial Basketball Tournament.
Nails had 18 fourth-quarter points, including four three-point baskets to top the Columbia record by one. Conrad Zampier piled up 43 points last season when the Blue Devils beat Mohonasen in double overtime, 80-73.
“He gets in a groove,” said Columbia coach Jim Obermayer. “He was like that in practice the other day. He didn’t miss anything.”
Nails’ performance ranks among the best ever in the tournament that began back in 1961 as the Schenectady Christmas Festival. In the 1963 title game, Lew Alcindor of Power Memorial, who later became NBA career scoring leader Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, scored 44 points to go with 19 rebounds and nine blocked shots in a 101-64 win over Linton.
Nails finished with nine three-point baskets to tie the Columbia one-game mark. John Lyons made nine threes against Mohonasen in the 1990-91 season, and Alex Zampier made nine threes against Shaker in the 2005-06 season.
Nails was the second player at the Hilliard to reach 40 points Friday. In an earlier junior varsity game, Schenectady 10th-grader Neftali Lind amassed 40 in a 75-72 win over Columbia.
Sabres break through
Schalmont snapped a pair of losing streaks when it beat host Mohonasen, 56-33, and then Lansingburgh, 53-35, to claim the Kirvin Cup basketball championship last week.
Schalmont had dropped eight straight opening-round games to Mohonasen before Devin Murphy’s 21 points lifted the Sabres to Thursday’s win. The Sabres’ previous tourney win over the Mighty Warriors came in 2004 in overtime, 62-60.
Schalmont lost in the 2004, 2003 and 1997 finals to Scotia-Glenville and also lost to Notre Dame-Bishop Gibbons in the 1996 title game. That drought ended against Lansingburgh Friday when tourney MVP Zac O’Dell had 13 points, 14 rebounds and three blocked shots. Schalmont won previous Kirvin Cup championships in 1995, 1990, 1989, 1988 and 1987.
Dragons score big
Columbia Prep continued to press, and Gloversville had success breaking it, in a 103-70 win at its Coach Kabuskie Holiday Tournament Sunday.
“Our intent was not to get 100 points. They dictated the game,” said Gloversville coach Mark LeFever. “They pressed us. They went with a 1-2-1-1 the whole game, and we were getting layup after layup. And when we did miss, we were getting second and third opportunities.”
Hunter Goodwin scored 24 points, Asa Barnhill totaled 21, Barceem Dukes netted 20 and Keyshawn Arnold added 19 in the first-round win. Gloversville finished with 45 field goals (six three-pointers) on 77 possessions.
“After talking to a few guys, we think it’s a Gloversville record for points in a game,” said LeFever.
Ciaccio’s No. 12 retired
Former Gloversville standout Chris Ciaccio had his No. 12 uniform retired Sunday as part of the festivities at the Coach Kabuskie Holiday Tournament.
Ciaccio graduated in 1990 as Section II’s all-time scoring leader with 2,373 points, and held that distinction until 2006 when Jimmer Fredette of Glens Falls moved to the top of the list with 2,404.
Ciaccio was named the Foothills Council most valuable player four times, made the Schenectady Gazette All-Area first team three times, and was twice selected to the all-state Class B first team. In 2009 he was enshrined into the Capital Region Basketball Hall of Fame.
Gloversville went 83-14 with Ciaccio playing a lead role and won four league titles. In 1988 and 1989, Gloversville won Section II and regional titles, and both times lost by one point in the state semifinals to the eventual champion.
Ciaccio set a Gloversville record with 53 points against Shaker in his first game as a senior, and later had outings with 41 and 42 points. His high as a junior was 44.