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Tuesday, March 24, 2015: Wrapping up a weekend of basketball

   Leading off today: Principal Joseph Troy of Albertus Magnus has apologized to Jamesville-DeWitt basketball player Jamie Boeheim and her teammates, Syracuse.com reported Monday.

   Boeheim is a freshman on the J-D team and the daughter of Syracuse University men's basketball coach Jim Boeheim.

   In a letter, Troy offered what he called "a sincere apology" for the "inappropriate remarks at the end of our game" by Albertus Magnus students, who taunted Boeheim by chanting, "Where's the cheater?" in Saturday's NYSPHSAA girls Class A basketball semifinals at Hudson Valley Community College.

   Troy said the behavior was not "a true indication" of his school's community. He said those students who targeted Boeheim and other J-D players "violated our Mission Statement which includes, 'showing respect for the dignity of each student.'"

   The principal said school officials will meet with students to discuss appropriate behavior at sporting events. Troy, who will retire in June after 20 years as head of the school, said Albertus Magnus officials had not decided on a punishment as of Monday evening.

   Troy told The Journal News the offending students had not been identified. He said he will ask members of the student body to step forward in exchange for a lighter punishment.

   J-D fires McKenney: In a powerful acceptance speech at his induction into the New York State Basketball Hall of Fame on Sunday in Glens Falls, Syracuse CBA boys coach Buddy Wleklinski recalled how he was almost fired after his second season at the school. Wleklinski noted that a four-win season followed by a .500 record in year 2 didn't exactly give him mush leverage as he sought to hang on.

   On Monday, fellow Section 3 coach Bob McKenney found out that 500 career wins and five NYSPHSAA championships don't earn a guy much good will front the administration either.

   Syracuse.com reported that Bob McKenney is officially out as boys coach at Jamesville-DeWitt. Superintendent Alice Kendrick released a statement announcing the decision.

   "The Jamesville-DeWitt School District has received much feedback about Bob McKenney's contributions over the years as varsity boys basketball coach and is appreciative that many have had a positive experience," said the statement. "At this time the District believes it is appropriate to move in a different direction."

   McKenney, who just completed his 19th season with the Red Rams, could not be reached for comment.

   Attendance climbs: A total of 18,363 people attended the weekend's 15 boys games at the Glens Falls Civic Center, besting last year's attendance by nearly 3,000, The Post-Star reported.

   The 2015 number was boosted by Lake George, Shenendehowa and Scotia-Glenville giving Section 2 three championships for the third straight year.

   This year's tournament fell short of the 18,915 tickets sold in 2013 when Lake George, Watervliet and Argyle won state championships.

   One weekend to go: The season concludes this weekend with the Federation basketball marathon at SUNY Albany. You can check out the schedule here.

   Behind the scenes: It was a relatively uneventful weekend for the state boys basketball committee. To paraphrase one observer, you know there's not much meat on the agenda when the selection of an official basketball is one of the major items.

   The NYSPHSAA recently reviewed bids in nine sports for the state-wide ball adoption program; not surprisingly -- they've

  

  • 2015 Federation basketball schedule
  • 2015 NYSPHSAA boys basketball brackets
  • 2015 NYSPHSAA girls basketball brackets
  • 2015 NYSPHSAA boys hockey brackets
  • N.Y. wrestling championships (PDF): Div. I | Div. II
  • N.Y. indoor track championships: Boys | Girls


  • already been a player in smaller New York deals -- Spalding was the winner.

       The program will begin with the 2016-2017 school year, and the 11 NYSPHSAA sections have until April 24 to decide whether they want to participate in five-year deals. Those opting to use the official ball for their soccer, volleyball, football, basketball, baseball and softball tournaments, will receive a guaranteed rights fee and product credit for five years.

       A few examples courtesy of the NYSPHSAA announcement to its members:

        • Spalding's Alpha football is already used by Sections 3, 6 and 11 and has been designated the official 2015 ball in 10 states and the National Junior College Athletic Association.

        • Sections 3, 6 and 11 also already use the TF 1000 Classic basketball. It's the official ball in 20 states and the NJCAA.

       Coaching stories: The Post-Star did a short item over the weekend on Spring Valley boys coach Willie Worsley, who was on the first all-black starting five in the NCAA, a group that led Texas Western to the 1966 national title over an all-white Kentucky squad. It was indisputably a moment that changed both sports and society.

       Asked about the significance of the game, Worsley says the team being underestimated was motivation enough without the race element.

       Last month, Worsley published his autobiography with co-author Terry Mulgrew, a Spring Valley teacher. In it, he expressed regret over having never coached a champion -- a dry spell that ended weeks later with a Section 1 crown. "In my career, I had been a player and I won at every level," Worsley said in Our Reward Will Be History. "I just wanted to complete the circle, I call it. I just wanted to win a championship as a coach."

       On a separate note, The Observer-Dispatch asks a pretty interesting question: Is Bernie Hughes the only boys basketball player to win a New York State Public High School Athletic Association championship and officiate a state tournament game at the Glens Falls Civic Center?

       Hughes was a Brookfield junior guard when the Beavers edged St. Patrick's 40-38 in the 1983 Class D final. Hughes, 48, a Mohawk Valley basketball official for 25 years, returned to the Glens Falls Civic Center court this past weekend, this time wearing a striped shirt.

       "Yeah, it was very emotional," Hughes told the paper. "I've been back there before, but I've never been down on the court. That brought back a lot of great memories."

       He worked the Woodlands-Ogdensburg Class B semifinal and the Shenendehowa-Mount Vernon Class AA semifinal.


      
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