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Wednesday, Nov. 19, 2014: Two football semifinals being pushed back

   Leading off today: Two NYSPHSAA football semifinals are being moved to Sunday and the start time for prelims at Friday's state swim meet has been pushed back.

   The New York State Public High School Athletic Association announced the schedule revisions Wednesday afternoon in the aftermath of the massive lake-effect storm that dumped snow measured in feet rather than inches beyond the eastern shores of Lake Erie and Lake Ontario.

   With Indian River snowbound in the northern reaches of Section 3, the NYSPHSAA Class A football semifinal vs. Irondequoit at Rochester's Sahlen's Stadium has been moved from Friday night to Sunday at noon.

   The Class B semifinal in Rochester between Maine-Endwell and Cheektowaga at Sahlen's Stadium has been rescheduled from Saturday afternoon to Sunday at 3 p.m. Cheektowaga was among the Buffalo suburbs hit hard by the storm Monday and Tuesday, and administrators have already called off Thursday classes.

   With state finals in those two classes scheduled for the following Sunday at the Carrier Dome, the semifinal winners from the rescheduled games will still have a week to prepare.

   The state swim meet at Ithaca College was supposed to start at 9 a.m. Now, the day's schedule will be pushed back at an 11 a.m. start, with the first swimmers on the blocks for prelims at 1:15 p.m.

   "Anytime our schools and students are impacted by a weather event of this magnitude, we must consider all aspects of the situation and make accommodations where possible," NYSPHSAA Executive Director Robert Zayas said in the announcement.

   NFA star suspended: Newburgh senior running back Anthony Dubose has been suspended for Saturday's Class AA football semifinal for violating a school policy, The Times Herald-Record reported Wednesday.

   Newburgh will be playing Shenendehowa in a bid to reach the NYSPHSAA title game in Syracuse for the second time in four years.

   Jason Semo, the Newburgh AD, would not disclose the nature of Dubose's infraction, but said it resulted in him being suspended from school for five days.

   "Anthony is a kid I appreciate and he has a great work ethic," Semo said. "He accepts responsibility for his mistakes, but Anthony is a good kid. This is a huge blow, but I talked to the kids, Billy (Bianco, the coach) talked to the kids. Nobody has handed us anything all year. This is tough, but our focus is on Shenendehowa."

   In just seven games this season, Dubose had rushed for 1,119 yards and 14 touchdowns. He scored the game-winning touchdown in a 15-7 overtime win vs. Monroe-Woodbury in the Section 9 Class AA final. He missed the first two games of the year after Bianco suspended him for breaking team rules. He also served a one-game suspension for delivering what referees ruled an illegal hit in a game.

   Mattituck coach retires: Mattituck boys soccer coach Mat Litchhult is going out a winner, announcing his retirement on the heels of the team's state championship Sunday in Middletown.

   Litchhult, 37 years old and a Mattituck graduate, made the announcement to the team Tuesday at the Tuckers' celebration dinner following the 3-0 win over Beekmantown in NYSPHSAA Class B. He cited a desire to spend more time with his family.


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  •    "My heart was telling me no, but in the end I think my brain was telling me it was the right move," he told "You never know if you're making the right decision. I know I have a lot of support. My wife supports what I do. My family supports what I do. The community supports what I do. But in the end, I think that in order to be a what I consider to be a good dad, I would like to do it for 12 months of the year instead of sometimes I feel like I'm out for about four months at a time."

       The coach and his wife became parents for the third time on Sept. 25. Litchhult's teams went 181-50-14 and Mattituck won the state 2003 Class C title in his second season of coaching.

       How cool is this? Of all the titles to hold in sports, world boxing champion has to rank near the top. And on Saturday a former St. Anthony's football player and wrestler gets his shot against one of the great champions in the sport.

       Chris Algieri, a native of Huntington who's undefeated in 20 fights after starting out as a successful kickboxer, takes on Manny Pacquiao on Saturday in Macau. Pacquiao has won world titles in a record eight weight classes.

       Algieri, 30, has a bachelor's degree in health science from Stony Brook University and a master's in clinical nutrition from the New York Institute of Technology. His big break in boxing came in February when he pounded out a 10-round decision against the respected Emanuel Taylor.

       That paved the way for a title shot in June vs. Ruslan Provodnikov, the WBO light welterweight champion. Provodnikov sent Algieri to the canvas twice in the first round, but Algieri gutted it out and won by split decision in 12 rounds.

       "You don't have to have a tough upbringing to be tough," Algieri, who lives in his parents' basement and drives a 2001 Honda with nearly 200,000 miles, told The New York Times. "I think that was a big question people had about me, coming from Long Island and being educated. But my drive comes from my passion for the sport and for competition. I like to compete. I like to win."

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